Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Occam and Naturalism

Bill Vacellia is speaking my mind once again:
So this is what I am interested in discussing: Can naturalism explain everything that needs to be explained? If it can, then we ought to be naturalists, or at least the pressure is on to accept naturalism. God might still exist even if everything apart from God could be explained without reference to God. But then what reason would one have to posit God? Mystical experience of God? God's self-revelation through his prophets as recorded in scripture? Perhaps, but then the question of the veridicality of these sources of putative knowledge becomes very pressing indeed. Metaphysical naturalism will most like bring epistemological naturalism and scientism in its train and thus a foreclosing on all sources of knowledge apart from science. So I say that the pressure is on to accept naturalism if it can explain what needs to be explained. Of course, I don't think it can explain what needs to be explained, which is why I am an anti-naturalist. I am not an anti-naturalist because I am a theist, I am an anti-naturalist because naturalism fails to explain what needs to be explained. I have been building my case slowly, but it is far from complete. But note well: to argue against naturalism is to not argue for substance dualism. For there are other options such as absolute idealism. If everything is a mind or a content in a mind, then that is as parsimonious an explanation as an explanation that states that everything is either a body or a construction from bodies.

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