Science makes no philosophical claim to ‘Truth’ but instead provides useful approximations based on its ongoing peer-review methodology. What is reliable information by way of science is the result of similar enough results from replicated experiments that are strictly controlled and abide by the parameters established by a long succession of scientists. Their hand-me-down story is called epistemology.
In the end, all it tells us is that under such and such of circumstances, it is most likely that these results will be achieved regardless of who you are or where you are as long as you abide by the parameters of the experiment. This consistency of results is what allows us to make engineering choices based on scientific ‘truths’.
When people say they believe in scientific ‘fact’, they usually mean engineering applications of the science. No one bothers to question the science behind the combustion engine as long as their car runs reliably.
But the key phrase here is ‘approximations of truth’. More absolute truths, the understanding of ourselves and the objects in themselves requires a different kind of perspective outside of the scientific framework; one that takes the observer and the point of observation into account in the observation.
This involves a separate methodology as structured as scientific methods but with different aims and thus different kinds of conclusions. The overlooked discipline is that of Phenomenology, coined by the mathematical genius turned philosopher and teacher of the great Martin Heidegger, Edmund Husserl.
Husserl believed that our understanding of phenomena was completely based on our disposition towards the apperception (or the incorporation of our perceptions into our existing body of knowledge i.e. our understanding of the perception). Although a mathematician, this view of truth being determined by the perception of the observer as much as the thing-in-itself which can never be truly perceived apart from its set of traits and characteristics is a natural extension of Kant’s Idealism, for which Time and Space are far from objective physical phenomena and more akin to categories of perception. In effect, shared psychological states of awareness.
This is precisely where Phenomenology collides with post-Modernism, Einsteinian physics (Relativity) and Freudian mapping of the unconscious (everything that we don’t know or did know but forgot).
This post-modern relativism owes a great deal to the mystical and alchemic traditions to which it shares a common ancestry with science. Science, after all, derived from mystical and alchemic experimentations by mainly monks who upon separating from the spiritualism of the Church, (thanks to that first and great secular martyr, Giordano Bruno), continued their quest for god’s Truth.
Mysticism (unlike Spiritualism), is not superstitious; rather it engages with the world in pursuit of solving mysteries unknown and unsolvable by science. Mysticism poses questions science would never bother to ask and then attempts to answer them. Metaphysical questions such as ‘Who am I’ outside of my name and a social construct? Why am I here and who really lies behind the many masks upon mask that I wear and why do I wear them in the first place?
Psychoanalysis and Psychology at their best are not sciences at all, they are merely enquiries into the nature of the mind (although the current bias towards quantifiable conclusions might make one think otherwise). They are a result of mystical enquiries into the nature of the mind and how it shapes our most intimate and fundamental perceptions of the world we live in; the space in time we briefly occupy before dying. Medicine is yet another example of a supposed science that in fact is based on a field of knowledge that predates scientific methodology.
Nor is mathematics strictly speaking a science and yet it is by far more predictive of the unknown and unexperienced than science could ever hope to be.
I feel that this is a very relevant issue in the face of the current data-fixation of human experience as well as the current bias of valuing quantifiable truths over qualifiable ones. Just because you can count something accurately doesn’t mean you understand it better.
The truth is never in the data as such, it’s in the interpretation of the data, as long as you’re smart enough to factor in the interpreter.
I’ll take a breath now;
And recall who I am.
So who is this Soul that you sing of?
The silent, invisible witness
Who counts the leaves off of trees
instead of gathering them?
Then raking them into a funerary circle,
Into a giant pile, your better self can fall from,
Or jump into?
Up to your eyeballs,
Up to your own little crown of thorns.
The world is not a mystery, children.
It is an enigma waiting to solved
Or a safe that awaits its own combination.
A puzzle patiently poised for its pieces to coincide
With your hands.
The question is not who made the world we exist in
The question is who made your hands?
I can no longer afford my own vices.
Is this g/d’s way of saving me?
If so, then more salvation and
Less mystery is all I can say.
Lead me to more fortune and less poverty, g/d.
So that I can pave my own way.
Oh what a beautiful morning,
Oh what a glorious day,
I’ve got a wonderful fee-ling,
That Donald is going away!
Paris is the City of Light
Spotted by puddles of darkness &
Forever burning lights.
Who at first, allured us,
Then wouldn’t allow us to leave her side.
Though she may be so much older than you or I,
She was, after all my life is recalled,
My greatest lover, ever.
Please remember Paris with fond tenderness
My toes too numb to step”.
Awareness is larger than the body.
Recent rewrite. When I first wrote and posted it, no one seemed to know what I meant by it. But now it’s becoming a favoured read aloud piece:
We who are hiding in our second bedrooms,
Licking the silver from the backs of our screens,
Are living in a different time zone
Of Insomniac Awareness.
Sometimes two, sometimes three, sometimes four or more
Lives are lived and lost each night.
In our rooms, by ourselves
Sitting precariously on the edge of our beds.
This is our legacy
The lasting perpetuity of our sensory species:
The glow that contests the light that once shone from our eyes,
Right up to the surface of our understanding.
What is not yet known.
Or what was known and long since forgotten.
Dances across the screen you stare into.
Tripping over your coded memories; in Real Time.
Who are you reading this?Do you know
What perturbs your sleep-walk into the night?
Or are you merely waiting for the screen to pull you through?
Into your own quiet world,
Where things that count never change.
And no one is dreaming you but your mother,
Who has left you now for another child.
©Igor Goldkind 2017
Death and his brothers are in my garden again.
Moving my plants around.
They tend to the growth quite delicately
Careful to not reap the harvest until the plants mature
And begin to lose their hair.
Death and his brother are in my garden again,
Whispering to each other as they pull away the weeds.
Poting and repotting each plant as it grows
Making sure the roots are clear of regrets and debris
So that in the end, it’s life can be cut short more easily.
Does death have a sweetheart? I wonder.
A woman whom he woes with words of love?
As much as death can love any living thing, at all.
He gathers my plants into a beautiful bouquet
Of lost souls and freshly cut lives.
To gift to she who holds him near; squeezing his dead heart in one hand,
My faltering flowers in the other.
There is No Escape
None of us gets paroled
From the prison cells, we lock ourselves into.
So that we all can fit together inside
This jigsaw life that we lead.
Which of course, eventually blows apart. We are merely the fragments of ourselves awaiting reassembly.
Each moment of thought is but a small drop in time.
Every piece fits the next piece.
Although we may try to avoid
The murmurs of our own thoughts.
It is our hearts that yawn and awaken slowly
From their long winter night’s sleep.
You and I are mere mortals,
Who dreamt of a life without end.
We are the ones who made up immortality and notoriety.
For the sake of seeking sweet comforts and sad joys.
And this is the story we tell ourselves
Whilst slumping back to our cells.
What I see is the reflection of my eyes
In every direction that I gaze.
Two mirrors face each other
Only the dust can tell the difference.