[FoRK] Re: Anything to be learned from religion?

Wilkin, Kurt Kurt.Wilkin
Fri Aug 12 03:10:47 PDT 2005

on fork, SDW wrote:
> I look at mathematical axioms as equivalent to theories in
> science (real
> theories, the ones backed up by facts, not conjectures and
> myth called
> theories).  Is not a mathematical axiom a model of a system that is
> testable in the real world (or imaginary world that is, indirectly, a
> model of the real world)?  True if the best explanation for something
> observable and not proven false.
> Many of you have the benefit (or curse) of far more formal
> math training
> than I, but I fail to see how math is less firm of a science than
> science in general.  

Axioms are unprovable (they were originally 'self-evident truths').
Standard example : how many parallel lines are there through a point?

Different values of which will give you (roughly)
1) the sum of the internal angles of a triangle always = 180 degrees
b) the sum of the internal angles of a triangle sometimes != 180 degress
(also true)

(the example I got for b was that if you *could* sum
the angles between 3 atoms, and between 3 universes,
you'd probably find a difference. Think a better one
is a triangle on a sphere)

Coincidentally, science is always testable, so current
scientific truth is based on the best test (guess) so far.
Systems of Maths logically follow from their (unprovable)
axioms, so current truth is based on the best choice of
axioms (guess) so far.
So other than perception being reality, there is none -
well, reality's our current best guess at what reality is :)
(OTOH, as above, some of you have the benefit of 
far more formal philosophical training than I)

But religion and science are orthogonal.
Science, by definition, is investigation of things *are*
provable, that religion is unprovable is the point of
religion (its the reason the Babelfish proves god doesn't
exist: proof denies faith). I'm pretty sure this
convention was started by Aristotle, that it gets
ignored has little to do with either (capital s) Science 
or (capital r) Religion.

Cheers, Kurt.

This electronic message together with any attachments is confidential and
intended for the named recipient's use only.  If you are not the intended
recipient (i) do not copy, disclose or use the contents in any way, (ii)
please let us know by return email immediately then destroy the message, and
any hard copies of the message, and any attachments.  The sender of this
message is not responsible for any changes made to this message and/or any
attachments and/or connection linkages to the Internet referred to in this
message after it has been sent.  Unless otherwise stated, any pricing
information given in this message and/or attachments is indicative only, is
subject to change and does not constitute an offer to buy or sell securities
or derivatives at any price quoted.  Any reference to the terms of executed
transactions should be treated as preliminary only and subject to separate
formal written notification.  Where reference is made to research material
and/or research recommendations, the basis of the provision of such research
material and/or recommendations is set out in the relevant disclaimer.

More information about the FoRK mailing list