Using Occam’s Razor to Slice a Gordian Knot!
Most science communication is culture.
I’m taking a little break from paying attention to the Science in the Skies Above Ukraine because that’s the type of stuff that will only meaningfully evolve over longer timelines. Still, the nature of that issue has really got me thinking about how easy it is for everyone to become really certain about something they’re some kind of wrong about.
I expect Avi Loeb to come around to the actual nature of the visitations of Unidentified Aerial Phenomena to our planet, and the new physics they represent, before I expect the vast majority of mainstream science to accept that there are real parapsychological phenomena which broadly demonstrate the existence of a parapsychological ecosystem sustained by undiscovered physics of consciousness.
That’s a complicated sentence
Part of the reason this is so hard for everyone to accept is because there’s never been anything like this before. None of our big institutions have ever done a good job of acknowledging when they shit the bed, right? Like ever. They just collapse and the people who corrupted them scurry away.
I guess we probably expected science to do better but… why? Science even tells us not to. Especially now. The schizophrenic nature of the hard vs soft science dichotomy that exists in science discourse — often privately through the natural biases of individuals and publicly through science communicators and influencers — clearly indicates that the systems and institutions of science aren’t any saner than any of the other ones. (I know I’m a crazy wizard on the internet and all but it sure looks like collective intelligences are a form of life and it looks like all of ours are going fucking bonkers right now.)
Here’s a big generalization because that might be all that’s possible here: Most people in the world still seem to believe in some sort of metaphysics despite what western science says, this while western science is at its most potent and many of its loudest preachers confidently declare that what those people believe is wrong.
Religiosity is a beautifully complicated spectrum, and that’s a good thing, but let’s not forget that if the issue were put to a global democratic vote and we had to round it to “yes metaphysics” / “no metaphysics” we’d round the whole planet up to yes. This highlights a profound truth about reality and another one about democratic systems. Pay attention.
This state of affairs persists despite an incredibly large array of compelling and well written blog posts indicating that there are no metaphysics. It’s a bit of a pickle… but then I remember that the CIA says remote viewing is real and that there is as much evidence for the existence of parapsychological phenomena as there is for traditional psychological phenomena.
It’s all fuckin crazy you guys. Every last bit of it. Crazy and true enough that it can’t be ignored or dismissed. Magic is real and science was kinda wrong about it for a real long time… and then our shared systems of science became increasingly dogmatic about it in recent generations. I’m not sure how accurate that last bit is — I’m just a wizard and not a historian — but I suspect this opens up huge fields of inquiry into the history of science.
Where did we go wrong?
Science is obviously right about a whole bunch of stuff. This whole thing will be viewed as an attack because that’s how the world works right now — but of course it’s not an attack. I love me some science. Sure I have some real problems with how we use science, often as a result of corporate interests that quite clearly are not aligned with the best interests of me or all the people I’ll ever meet, but I’m so very happy to live in a world with science.
I like science but I’m distrustful of the economic incentives that drive science and of the personal biases of individual scientists in elite institutional positions of power. I’m always distrustful of those things for everything everywhere though.
How can so many people and cultures — now and all throughout history — have structured their systems and societies around the existence of metaphysical phenomena while mainstream and foundational institutions of modern science reject that any of these metaphysics could be actual physics?
I used to think science was on the right side of that, but that’s because science is bad at communicating what it didn’t know. It’s not like we finished measuring everything, or have come to some consensus about what the fuck everything is and how it all works… right?
So what’s Occam’s razor here?
The easiest way to look at it is this: There are too many significant events of a wide variety of seemingly metaphysical origins — which have not been conclusively disproved despite significant focus and high quality efforts — to simply dismiss the existence of metaphysical events or phenomena as entirely false.
We can’t round down on this and say there’s nothing there because we don’t actually know what it is — or where everything is.
There’s so much wild and crazy shit just around the corner. This shift in the culture of science is inevitable because it’s an accurate description of our shared reality. A bunch of different cultural forces are pushing towards it right now. They have been for years but the world has been so fucking crazy that we haven’t noticed.
3 important takeaways
- I’m sorry to everyone who believes in this stuff because I was super dismissive about your views during most of my adult life. This doesn’t mean I subscribe to any specific theistic belief. All of this makes me very uncomfortable.
- If there’s a parapsychological ecosystem then it seems reasonable to assume that positive and loving feelings make it a good environment for us to be in so this seems like a good reason to be less shitty to one another.
- I will give a high-five to the first science influencer who admits this is reasonably accurate.