virus: Re: virus-digest V3 #39

Reed Konsler (
Wed, 10 Feb 1999 13:34:15 -0500

>Faith is accepting something without proof and generally refers to the
>untestable. If what you are swallowing is testable, then it would not
>require faith to accept it.

I agree with this (and a great deal of what you said in your longer post). As you pointed out, all living scientists began "in media res" and so accept, without direct evidence, many easily testable principles. Is it that a scientist presumes everything they beleive is *potentially* testable? Is everything a scientist believes testable and, if not, is the presumption itself a kind of faith? Do you think that most "real" scientists actually engage in this process of continuious self-interrogation...or do they often simply disregard questions and challenges to the paradigm?

If ignoring challenges to paradigm (as Kuhn documents) is not a product of "faith", then how would you describe it?

Have you ever known scientists that struck you as dogmatic, perhaps in their pursuit of research, perhaps in their personal lives? Does playing the role "scientist" make one immune to faith? Does playing the role "member of religion" make one particularly succeptible?


  Reed Konsler