My goal is to write articles that go against the flow to pique discussion, offer a different perspective and connect some dots.
There are those that believe that there is only one reality and it can only be obtained through the presupposition of valid human reasoning and the scientific method. This method has been useful and successful in discovering and explaining many things through objective experience, but is unreasonable when saying it the only way to explaining the universe.
Can logic and science explain the whole universe and what true reality is even though mankind has not been able to do it thus far?
Science has concluded that our reality is only influenced by our five senses. There is some truth to this statement, but cannot be promoted as fullness of truth.
There are many instruments that can capture the senses (e.g. sound). From these apparatuses, the senses can be defined and measured. Mankind has learned of the five senses that are used to define the perception of our objective reality. Within these senses, we are still limited in our understanding of the universe. Reality is different to each person because human experiences are an opinion on what reality is. Science has been biased by trying to explain everything from a materialistic perspective, but cannot negate the fact that there is still more to discover and things we don’t fully understand. This would mean that the principles of science and logic cannot be applied as universal law to full understanding of our universe.
One of the mysteries of mankind is trying to understand that there may be an immaterial essence of something that is in us. Reality can also be in the mind’s eye from external influences, but there is a unique phenomenon that occurs within us when we experience something internally.
Could there be a dual reality where one is material and the other is immaterial?
An immaterial reality would have to be beyond our limited logic and understanding, meaning that there could be a higher domain of what mere-man decides there is. To comprehend this somewhat, may or may not be attainable for some, but is still a logical pursuit. If logic cannot be applied universally, then logic alone cannot conclude on those who trust in something that is immaterial, because logic as a concept is immaterial. Science does not have the tools or instruments to reach or discover beyond the five senses.
To boldly proclaim that one field of knowledge has no limitations or is superior is an unreasonable statement unless a limitation is added.
Is it reasonable to say that logic has not been capable of solving all the mysteries of the universe?
Therefore, an immaterial reality is plausible.
Has has mankind achieved some understanding of the concepts of an immaterial nature?
Is it rational to say that unless someone offers material proof that an immaterial reality does not exist?
Is it rational to exclude from science something because is not believed to be sensory?
Science tries to limit 'exist' and reduce its definitions within number calculations, instrument measurements and objective observations.
Science strives to be rational, but has been biased and treated some theories as invalid due to prejudicial opinion. An intellectual trick is often used by the sceptic by saying that material proof must be provided for something immaterial, but it is not a rational statement. Definitions are changed to fit the external. Anything that is internal or immaterial is deemed invalid or not worthy of investigation.
It is plausible that a true eternal reality influences our material reality. Through experience, our minds grow, develops and is influence in an immaterial sense.
Mankind are the receptors from the influx of both time-space and non-time space. The immaterial concepts such as truth, purpose, love and interest would not work without the material to influence.
In this context, could it be that the essence of an immaterial eternal power could have created that which is material?
Contemporary science has based a foundation on something dead created itself and then evolved into life and our society as we know it.
An explanation of the cause of the universe must be rational, but trying to reduce everything to materialistic state creates an unreasonable limitation. The mind is immaterial and the brain is material. When they act together it forms our reality. All events that take place in the universe whether material or immaterial cannot be ignored or separated.
True reality must include both the material and immaterial to be rational.
- The Concept of Evil
There is a common deliberation over evil, either God created it, or He didn't. This leaves the question to the origin of evil if God is all-good. If God did not create evil, then who did?
- God in the Concept of Good and Evil
The problem with good and evil are, who is it that really makes the rules and the terms of their definitions?
© 2011 PlanksandNails
Emily on January 05, 2020:
*sigh* I really wish some people would stop freaking out and getting worked up, saying "materialist!", when others say "there is no evidence for immaterial".
Granted, we don't now everything about our reality, but that doesn't mean we should use 'god-of-the-gaps'.
And if/when science does get its hands on the so-called 'supernatural', it would no longer be supernatural. Just natural.
And no, saying things like this does not make me, or anyone a 'materialist'. It just means one is following science and/or neuroscience, not materialism.
I'm with neuroscientists, other scientists, commenters Pierre, and AKA Winston on this one.
PlanksandNails (author) on September 30, 2015:
I added the picture about 4 years ago.
Nicholas on September 29, 2015:
When did you add the picture of the woman with the material and immaterial on her hands becoming one?
Pierre Savoie from Canada on May 26, 2011:
Philosophy has become irrelevant, and it can not supersede an actual understanding of our 100% material universe. Claiming that there is some immaterial superstructure is nothing but the most idle of unproven speculations.
PlanksandNails (author) on May 26, 2011:
I intentionally did not try make this hub religious, but it seems the comments here keep leading to a personal bias or prejudice to my personal beliefs.
I did acknowledge this beforehand that this does happen.
("Show me one iota of evedience that this might be a possibility or better still a reality.")
I never claimed proof, but posed questions and gave my opinions on the theme. Ad hominem does get tiring as it doesn't add any "meat", nor is it an honest attempt to at least see another's perspective.
("BTW, the fact that I may come across as a n idiot to some on here, doesn't prove that this is the case.")
What does your stated fact prove then, of your own self-efficacy? Please clarify.
Chasuk on May 25, 2011:
@PlanksandNails: The article that you linked to Pierre is interesting. I'm reading it now.
Stump Parrish from Don't have a clue, I'm lost. on May 25, 2011:
//Is it reasonable to say that logic has not been capable of solving all the mysteries of the universe; therefore, a true permanent reality is a plausible notion?//
Is it plausable to believe that by going thru what ever ritual your religion requires, one can gain this understanding of the truth? If you cant prove it logically, how can saying I believe it, prove it?
//Science strives to be rational, but has been biased and treated some rational theories as invalid due to prejudicial opinion.//All you hAve done is show the problem with christianity. Nothing happened or will happen that isn't in a book written by pritave goat herders. These cave dwellers knew more about reality than those who have dedicated their lives to investigating. The religious of the world have spent their time defending an acient text in spite of every belief that is destroyed.
//In this context, could it be that the essence of an immaterial eternal power could have created that which is material?// Yes it remains a possibility. Show me one iota of evedience that this might be a possibility or better still a reality.
You seem to be using this for proof. My idea is possible on some distant plane of reality and that proves that it is a reality on this one.
The fact that I believe you are delusional proves that you are. That is your reasoning in action.
The possibility no matter how remote does not prove the existance of anything. Your disregard for reality be damned, lol. BTW, the fact that I may come across as a n idiot to some on here, doesn't prove that this is the case. HAHAHA
AKA Winston on May 25, 2011:
(The origins of the universe cannot be confirmed)
This is where you should have stopped - observation or not is irrelevant. It takes no faith to understand that it is impossible for anyone to know the origins of the universe.
That is all a rationalist/realist such as myself concludes. I don't know. Neither do you.
I can conclude, though, that it seems extremely unlikely that something can be created out of nothing, creation ex nihilo, and, yes, this is ultimately nothing more than intuition that tells me this, but that intuition is also backed by practical experience of the history of mankind that never in man's knowledge has anything been known to spontaneously come into existence from a void.
To think creation ex nihilo possible would for me require a willing suspension of disbelief of a quite compelling induction that it is impossible - suspending one's disbelief is how one enjoys a fantasy, but it is hardly a compelling method to base life choices upon.
PlanksandNails (author) on May 25, 2011:
The origins of the universe cannot be confirmed observationally; therefore, if you believe that all phenomena has a naturalistic cause, then your faith is proposing naturalism.
PlanksandNails (author) on May 25, 2011:
There is a distinction between natural science and the philosophy of nature. From where you are coming from, I understand that natural science has the details on the things that happen to work in our world.
Philosophical analyses and criticism is another field.
The periodic table tells what the world consists of. One of the elements is helium and the properties it does have.
On the other hand, the world still could have existed without it. That is a presupposition of science.
Can the questions of natural science and philosophy of nature be distinguished here?
Pierre Savoie from Canada on May 25, 2011:
No, no, vague pleading for us to consider "the immaterial" won't cut it, nor should anyone LIVE like there is some immaterial dimension giving them instructions.
Chasuk on May 25, 2011:
@PlanksandNails: Not everything pointless is necessarily "drivel." I hope that I've never implied that it was.
All questions can be divided into two categories; questions of fact, and questions of opinion. Questions of fact have "yes/no" answers. Questions of opinion can have multiple contradictory answers, all of them correct.
The existence of the immaterial is a "yes/no" question. If the immaterial exists, it exists regardless of my opinion.
I hope that the immaterial exists. My life would certainly be more interesting if I believed that it did. If I believed in the immaterial, I could begin to reasonably hope for personal immortality.
Unfortunately, I am constitutionally incapable of deciding any question of fact without solid evidence. I've spent decades -- literally -- examining claimed evidence for the immaterial, and none of it passes my admittedly strict criteria. Based on the evidence, the immaterial seems rather less likely than likely.
As for neuroscience, almost no neuroscientists believe that mind is anything more than a consequence of the anatomy and physiology of the brain. I am not a neuroscientist, but I am intimately familiar with their conclusions concerning mind. Neuroscientists do NOT believe that mind and body are ontologically distinct entities. I can provide reading lists, if you are interested.
If every person on earth believes that X is true, it can still be false. To argue otherwise is to fall victim to the logical fallacy known as "argumentum ad populum." Of course, if every person on earth believed that their own mother was the most beautiful of all mothers, they would all be correct.
The Egyptian engineering feats aren't that inexplicable. Even if they were, I don't see how engineering connects to the immaterial.
Thank you for the dialogue.
AKA Winston on May 25, 2011:
All you are proposing is dualism. You make claims about "the mind" but have to admit the mind is only a conception.
Immaterial means without matter. The first thing that must be shown is that non-matter can affect matter. It doesn't have to be shown experimentally, but it should be hypothesized as to how it is possible and then theorized as to how it is accomplished. Explain to us the hypothesis and theory of "the mind" moving a pencil across a table top or Uri Geller's mind bending spoons for real.
Until that is done, it is wishful thinking. Sorry.
PlanksandNails (author) on May 25, 2011:
I am not claiming that the virtue of someones faith has contributed to science no more than the virtue of you being a lover of high heeled shoes. Whether it is relevant or irrelevant, I cannot prove that it may have stimulated a rational theory or conclusion.
(" Lots of people set up "experiments" enough to fool the local newspaper.")
That is true. I am not claiming that I can prove the immaterial, but I believe it is a theory to consider beyond defining it as drivel.
PlanksandNails (author) on May 25, 2011:
("Whenever we hypothesize characteristics of the immaterial, we leave ourselves open to pointless fancy.")
I don't think it is pointless fancy, but that comes down to a difference of opinion or interest in this case. Since different scientific fields, religions, or beliefs have posed these type of questions and theories and also have done experiments on this subject, I also find it interesting and think it warrants continual research into their various facets.
Your "reindeer" statement cannot be given enough credence in this case. For example, neuroscience is considered a legitimate field, and has tried to investigate theories beyond materialistic ontology.
If there are so many people who believe in an immaterial presence, and so many are effected by it (eg religion), then I believe there must be a more rational explanation to these immaterial experiences up to this point. I believe our knowledge and understanding are still limited on many things. I believe we can achieve a greater understanding of these concepts.
For one to say it is drivel or pointless may be so, but may be of interest and importance to another.
For example, one of the interesting things about Egyptian history and archeology are some of the unsolved mysteries behind their fascinating engineering feats and their spiritual way of life. Also, the way they constructed their ships like a puzzle and put them together was quite unique and different from many other cultures.
Thanks for commenting.
Pierre Savoie from Canada on May 24, 2011:
But Planks, I am saying clearly that NO SCIENTIST CONTRIBUTES TO SCIENCE *BY VIRTUE OF HIS FAITH*. Scientifically, faith is a meaningless label that has no effect on the thoughts necessary to construct a scientific hypothesis. You seem to claim that people of FAITH *CAN* contribute to something by virtue of faith.
And I didn't comment on the two so-called experiments you claimed because you gave no published source for them in a peer-reviewed, scientific journal. Until you do, they have no real existence to prove anything. Lots of people set up "experiments" enough to fool the local newspaper.
PlanksandNails (author) on May 24, 2011:
You didn't comment on the two experiments that I gave as examples.
("Also, NO scientist has contributed any knowledge by virtue of applying his religious FAITH to science. There is NO SUCH THING as Catholic insights to fluid dynamics, or Islamic insights into chlorophyll photosynthesis. They put their religion on a hook in the dressing-room as they put on their lab coat!")
I said,"There are scientists who have their own faith and others who don’t. Both have contributed to knowledge in many fields from around the world."
There are no secret hidden meanings to this statement, nor am I changing the definition of who a scientist is.
PlanksandNails (author) on May 24, 2011:
(“I see two distinct psychological issues in your suppositions: arrogance and fear.”)
You presume that two immaterial concepts that you speak have affected my material person.
Your assumptions of my psychological issues are immaterial.
(“If fear is imaginary - emotional - then actions are a choice, and one is not required to follow emotion's lead.”)
Fear, emotion, and choice are immaterial, but may affect us physically or materially.
If I fear heights, I may choose to stay away from elevated places. Although I may fear heights, I may choose to go to elevated places. The reasons the choice may be made, are from the immaterial mind which may influence the material brain to do.
There was some UCL research done on kids who have been exposed to the “immaterial” concept of frightening experiences and how it affected the development of their “material” brains and their probability for violent behaviour.
Pierre Savoie from Canada on May 23, 2011:
PlanksandNails, how is consciousness, love, beauty, hate immaterial? It's all just chemicals, produced in the brain, and not independent of chemical thoughts. If you see something that repels you, you see an image of light impinging on your eyes, which sends nerve signals to your brain, which chemically reacts and seeks associations of what you are seeing to things you've experienced before, and the synapses click and you feel revulsion at something based on that. It's all a chemical process from sensing to response. You are claiming that there is a "mind" beyond the chemical brain. How's about a little proof of that?
Also, NO scientist has contributed any knowledge by virtue of applying his religious FAITH to science. There is NO SUCH THING as Catholic insights to fluid dynamics, or Islamic insights into chlorophyll photosynthesis. They put their religion on a hook in the dressing-room as they put on their lab coat! I say again, NO scientist, not even a religious one, talks as if a God is needed for anything.
PlanksandNails (author) on May 23, 2011:
One of the difficulties in science has been to try to explain what consciousness is and the degree of awareness that we possess. When we experience the immaterial concepts such as love, beauty, hate etc... we cannot deny the effects they have on us.
One research experiment that has been done was that a skull of a patient was opened up exposing the grey matter of the brain. The area of the brain that controls the right arm was electrically stimulated, which caused the right arm to lift without the permission of the patient. The scientist then told the patient to consciously resist while they electrically stimulated the brain again in the same spot. When the patient consciously resisted, the arm did not lift. This was convincing and reasonable enough to say that the mind may control the brain.
This sounds to me like a rational and plausible bit of evidence to continue to explore the “inner-space” of our beings.
Also, there was a UCLA experiment done on two sets of depressed patients where one set of patients received a regimen of anti-depressive medication and the other sugar pills. It was shown that the patients who took the sugar pills had a positive placebo effect where there was evidence that actual changes in the brain took place just by taking the fake pills. From this experiment, the mind actually changed the brain through the “power of suggestion”.
The evidence here would also move towards a plausible distinction between the mind and brain matter; the immaterial effecting the material.
(“If you move among scientists, no scientist talks as if God is needed for anything, that there is a mysterious "Factor X" without which matter or life can't develop.”)
There are scientists who have their own faith and others who don’t. Both have contributed to knowledge in many fields from around the world. Your statement above is bias.
AKA Winston on May 23, 2011:
I see two distinct psychological issues in your suppositions: arrogance and fear.
Arrogance is an unwillingness to accept being anything other than special in the realm of the universal. Fear is the emotional response to the prospect of the loss of that unique special identity and its supportive ego.
The paradox is that there is nothing to fear. Liberation comes with abandoning the need to be considered special. Materialism does not eliminate the immaterial - it relegates it to its proper place - in the imagination.
If fear is imaginary - emotional - then actions are a choice, and one is not required to follow emotion's lead.
Chasuk on May 22, 2011:
I agree that everything experienced via my five senses is ultimately subjective. However, this seldom makes any difference. Your brain sees blue, and perhaps mine sees some other color, but our frame of reference is the same, so we both concur that the color of the ocean is blue.
If our frame of reference were not the same, science wouldn't work, and it demonstrably does.
I have zero reason to believe that anything "immaterial" exists. I'm NOT saying that the immaterial doesn't exist, merely that it defies evidentiary proof. As such, for me -- it isn't productive to consider. An immaterial thing obviously lacks any characteristics over which we can agree; it possesses no mutual frame of reference.
You ask, "Could it be that the essence of an immaterial eternal power could have created that which is material?"
Yes, it is possible. It is also possible that reindeer poop when mixed with a substance only obtainable from the dark side of the moon cures cancer.
Whenever we hypothesize characteristics of the immaterial, we leave ourselves open to pointless fancy. I'm not saying that these fancies aren't enjoyable -- heck, I enjoy them -- but they don't establish the existence of a separate, immaterial reality.
Most of the evidence points to mind as an organic process. For example, drive a spike into your brain, and your mind is affected.
Provide me evidence of the immaterial, and I'd be thrilled. Seriously. I've been looking for decades, and I've yet to discover a single shred.
Pierre Savoie from Canada on May 22, 2011:
If there is an immaterial, if you are trying to claim we are too "limited" to see it, you have the paradox of trying to explain how it was revealed to you, more than to an educated scientist whose modern ability to extend the senses can not be dismissed or ignored. As far as I can tell, scientists hold the MONOPOLY on discovering and making plain to all of society every invisible thing: planets past Saturn, X-rays, electrons, quantum particles. They have furnished all this knowledge to humans, and these form the basis of our electronic instruments, which work for everybody -- even the people who disbelieve in scientific things like quantum particles.
Arguing for immaterial things that never cross over into the material, the REAL, is a waste of time. What isn't real can't affect us. However, the moment you claim some immaterial thing is REAL, the moment you claim it affects the material, it becomes a material object itself and therefore is fully within the purview of science to examine and criticize.
Compared to that, you can name NO invisible thing discovered and made plain to the whole human race by a RELIGION or a SUPERNATURAL BELIEF-SYSTEM.
No more excuses or philosophical drivel. How about a little PROOF of the immaterial? Scientists have made more and more things explainable, which people used to attribute to immaterial causes. There used to be Lightning Gods and Earthquake Gods, until we understood the fully MATERIAL origins of lightning and earthquakes. It is the same for Creation Gods, and Gods in general, they are on their way out too. Scientists are already postulating much better theories about the origin of everything than can be provided by the religious, so we are well on our way to dispelling all the need for any god at any point in the formation of our universe. If you move among scientists, no scientist talks as if God is needed for anything, that there is a mysterious "Factor X" without which matter or life can't develop.
Isaiah Michael from Wherever God leads us. on May 21, 2011:
Wow! Deep, I am glad someone has said to put the two together for a result, material and immaterial