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Defending Scientific Materialism Essay, Research Paper

Defending Scientific Materialism:

Carl Sagan s A Demon Haunted World

Scientific Materialism:

What is materialism?

Definition of materialism is; all reality consists only of matter.

So scientific materialism is when all the answers to today s questions are proven by this theory. People who believe in scientific materialism believe that all the answers are definite and legitimate it leaves no room for error. There is proof for everything no unanswered questions. (From Intelligent Systems)

Scientific Materialism vs. Christianity

Richard Lewontin wrote:

Our willingness to accept scientific claims that are against common sense is the key to an understanding of the real struggle between science and the supernatural. We take the side of science in spite of the patent absurdity of some of its constructs, in spite f its failure to fulfill many of its extravagant promises of health and life, in spite of its failure to scientific community for unsubstantiated just-so stories, because we have a prior commitment, a commitment to materialism. It is not that the methods and institutions of science somehow compel us to accept a material explanation of phenomenal world, but, on the contrary, that we are forced by our a priori adherence to material explanations, no matter how counterintuitive, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is absolute, for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door.

Carl Sagan

A Demon Haunted World is a prime view of this.

Carl Sagan a man who is a lover of science, wrote this book as a mission statement for himself. Carl speaks about the dumbing of the Americans.

The dumbing effect is caused because of pesudoscience.

pesudoscience is the fake science: i.e. horoscopes, aliens, bleeding statues

Carl talks about the fact that Americans are the biggest at fault with this, they are obsessed with all of this junk science that it is the only science that they see.

In his Science and hope section he reminds the reader that Despite plentiful opportunities for misuse, science can be the golden road out of poverty and backwardness for emerging nations. It makes national economies and the global civilization run. Many nations understand this. (pg. 37) Then he goes on to say hoe again America is a little slow on this issue.

Most of Carl s book is based on the absurdities of the American people and how gullibly they are to believe some of the things we hear about.


What proof do we have from them. The closest was the Face story of 1976. (it was a blown up picture of Mars, it looked like a human face) So from this, people believed that aliens existed and the government was covering it up. Carl talks about (in the Hallucinations Chapter) how people make this up and then believe it.

Go ahead read the Weekly World News, then when you go to bed wait for the alien to come at night and drain you of all your human thoughts. But if the aliens wanted our inf. and did not want us to know about it they would do it secretly. It is a hallucination of a human being that is completely natural. Some people are so suggestible that this will capture them and then spread the word. (pg. 106-07)

This point then goes into the obsessed reality of humans in today s world.

Basically Carl writes in his book that he is definitely a scientific materialist but you have to know the difference between junk science and the real thing, because then you will never take in account the true pleasure and excitement of science and what it can do for you.

The sad lesson from this book that is true:

One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we ve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It s simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back. So the old bamboozles tend to persist as the new ones rise. (pg. 241)


Relative Rational Credibility, www.bumler.com

Materialism, Intelligent Systems and their Societies,


Carl Sagan, A Demon Haunted World. Ballantine Books, NY. 1996

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