On Purposes and Paradigms

On The Usefulness of Different Paradigms for Different Purposes

By Ken K. Gourdin

I just posted the following on BYU Professor Daniel C. Peterson’s blog, Sic et non, at the following thread (this and any other links last accessed January 23, 2019): https://www.patheos.com/blogs/danpeterson/2019/01/the-birds.html.

[Screen name redacted], regarding our esteemed host, Daniel C. Peterson: “This atheist doesn’t think that you hate and fear science, but I do think that you disregard those implications science that would interfere with your religious beliefs.”

Not at all, Our Dear [redacted]! Not at all! I’ll let Our Esteemed Host speak for himself. He is more than capable of doing so, and I’m often entertained (not to mentioned enlightened) when he does. But there’s more than one paradigm for discovering and applying truth, and scientific paradigms are simply one class of such paradigms. I suspect that, along with a great number of his co-religionists (a group which includes more than a few scientists), he employs one or more scientific paradigms when considering scientific truths, one or more religious paradigms when considering religious truths, and so on.

To borrow an example that is wholly outside the religious realm, if I were a juror, I wouldn’t expect E=mc2, notwithstanding the truth of that equation, to be of much help to me in attempting to resolve the question of whether the prosecutor has proven, beyond a reasonable doubt and consistent with the crime(s) with which a defendant been charged, whether Smedley held up the Anytown USA First Bank and Trust on July 1, 2018. So here. Different paradigms are applicable/useful in different realms, and a paradigm which is perfectly useful for one purpose may be wholly unsuitable for another. I’m not “ignoring” E=mc2. It’s simply not relevant to the question(s) I have been called upon to decide.

About kenngo1969

Just as others must breathe to live, I must write. I have been writing creatively almost ever since I learned to write, period! I have written fiction, book- and article-length nonfiction, award-winning poetry, news, sports, features, and op-eds. I hope, one day, to write some motivational nonfiction, a decent-selling novel, a stage play, and a screen play.
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2 Responses to On Purposes and Paradigms

  1. Pingback: Different Paradigms, Different Purposes | Commentary on the passing scene

  2. Pingback: Paradigms Crossed | Commentary on the passing scene

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