Academics tell us that the only empirical fact we can be certain of is Rene Descartes's, "I think therefore I am." The more skeptical academics think even this is too much. They limit themselves to, "I think therefore some activity is occurring." Therefore we are told that we can not be certain that either man or apes exist, or ever existed, but that we can be certain that man evolved from an ape that was the most recent common ancestor of man and chimp.
Similarly, we can not be sure that the earth or the sun exist, or ever existed, but we can be sure that the earth orbits the sun.
Cynically one could say that the academics are not sure that people who disagree with them exist, but are absolutely certain that the people who disagree with them are idiots.
So we are metaphysically certain about simple math, and scientifically certain about well established science, what about metaphysics.
Religion is frequently considered, and often dismissed as metaphysics. As the teaching of the Catholic Church is religion it is considered a prime example of metaphysics, particularly when the term is used derisively.
But the Catholic Church does not describe its teaching or doctrines as metaphysically certain, or even scientifically certain. The Catholic Church only says its own teaching or doctrine is morally certain. This is a level of certainty below scientific certainty, the certainty of well established science, like the earth orbits the sun.
So metaphysics is not metaphysically certain. Yes, I know it is confusing.
I replied that this was not in conflict with Catholic teaching. Math is more certain and clearly less likely to be a social construct than medicine, but this does not make medicine worthless. When we get sick we go to a doctor, we do not rush out and find a mathmatician to cure us. Medicine is an applied science, Medicine and all the other sciences provide us with useful information that math does not. So math is not a substitute for the various fields of science.
Similarly, religion addresses different questions than math and science. Science does not claim to protect your from being reincarnated as a tapeworm in the stomach of a starving peasent, or thrown into a pit of everlasting fire. Just as math does not promise to cure you from any disease. A less certain form of knowledge can still be useful because while it is less certain it is more relevant.
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Religion Among the Educated and the Brilliant
Science, and Religion in Education
My secular science work and speculation
My area of expertise, economics
Apologetics, Miracles, Evidence indexs