> Hi Nolondil,
> > "You continue to make unsupported and unsupportable
> assertions. This is the problem with the Velikovsky method.
> Science isn't done by by Jedi Mind Trick.
> Sure I do,
> Fair criticism.
> In short:
> Surely and equally in support of your comments..."Science"
> itself IS also done and ruled by the the same 'Jedi Mind Trick'
> as you say, but these days cunningly disguised in different
> guises, forms, attires and various other disturbingly
> convincing attributes.
> "Science" is now currently and respectably "accepted" as truth
> (or at least, not far from it), particularly amongst those in
> high places, which is to say the scientific hierarchy and their
> numerous mentors...obedient servants if you will...the
> religious equivalent of Cardinals, Bishops, Priests etc who are
> the guiding pillars of "knowledge" and Society etc and whom
> actually rule the roost...and we are supposed to blindly follow
No, you are not expected to 'blindly' follow them, you are expected to examine the data yourself and follow certain methods of reasoning about it. Most people don't bother, of course. Few even read the popular news releases, let alone the actual papers. But they are available if you are interested. We are not handed scientific truth from 'on high' (well, except in school where everything is handed down from 'on high' simply because we are expected to reach a certain threshold of shared knowledge to become citizens) -- we are given plenty of information about the experiment, the actual data (where other things like privacy concerns don't prevent it) and the actual reasoning that produces the conclusion.
Certainly science can have undesirable and outright deleterious consequences for society at large. "Social Darwinism" is a good example of this. Darwin could never have guessed that his principle of 'natural selection' in the natural world could and would be twisted into justification of brutal classist and racist social policies against humans. But the basic 'tools' were developed by and for scientific thinking, and then were applied in an unexpected way. Similar abuses have occurred with Freud's psychology, and Marshal McLuhan even pointed out how communications technology was changing the way we viewed the world regardless of what was being transmitted. "The Medium is the message." The law of unintended consequences holds everywhere.
But I'm afraid I don't understand how promoting chaff like Velikovsky's personal mythology as an 'alternative' to contemporary science improves anyone else's freedom of thought. The only thing consistent I have found about his writings is that they always uphold Biblical miracles by any means necessary. The plagues of Exodus, manna falling from heaven to feed the Israelites, the 'sun standing still' over the battle of Gibeon (Joshua 12-15), etc. These are the things he's trying to explain and re-establish credibility for. Velikovsky was a Zionist and never tried to disguise that -- though it's not as if he could have! :) -- and he was trying to justify the state of Israel by returning credibility to Biblical miracles and prophecy. Does reinforcing the old totalitarianism help anyone resist the new totalitarianism? I don't think so.
There is plenty of notice taken of both the accidental ill effects and the deliberate misuse of science by modern thinkers both inside and outside the formal 'academic' world. It is possible to recognize the problems brought on by over-extending materialist thinking while still appreciating what it is really good for. Searching on the terms 'scientific materialism' or 'scientific realism' or even simply 'naturalism' will produce loads of interesting articles, many with with links to further resources. Wikipedia is a reasonable place to start:
But there are some radicals out there even in the 'establishment'. Paul Feyerabend argued against science in some quite extreme ways over his career.
How to defend Society against Science by PK Feyerabend
I want to defend society and its inhabitants from all ideologies, science included. All ideologies must be seen in perspective. One must not take them too seriously. One must read them like fairy-tales which have lots of interesting things to say but which also contain wicked lies, or like ethical prescriptions which may be useful rules of thumb but which are deadly when followed to the letter.
> If in my most learned career I had a choice, then the works of
> Velikovsky et al (which I began reading in the early 1970's)
> speaks far much more sense to me (and we are only talking about
> the solar system here, never mind the Universe and beyond etc)
> than conventional science/astronomy purports...with all its
> black holes, dark matter, dark energy, mirror matter, parallel
> universes etc, etc almost ad infinitum.
> As Oliver Hardy said many times to Stan Laurel in times past:
> "Why don't you do something to help me"?
> Joking aside and as you well know, there are so many unanswered
> questions which need to be addressed, particularly those of
> Venus, the Earth and the other planets too.
And promoting mythology over well-established science helps to answer those questions in what way? If you're going to invent a mythology for yourself, or adopt someone else's, that's fine. Mythology has a place in human thought. Just don't claim it is 'alternative science'.
> Any measure of what so-called "science/astronomy" these days
> apparently suggests to be, in order no doubt to suit the
> out-dated "conjecture" (in my view) as to how our solar system
> actually formed ie the 'Nebular Theory', is also being
> continually updated to suit the "status quo" of mainstream
> conventionalism ie once again to support the out-dated Nebular
Out-dated? Lack of proof is not refutation. Is the Nebular theory refuted? Or just not proven? If some sort of solid evidence turns up for a different theory I'm sure scientists will be very interested. The chance to be the 'discoverer' of something new, get a lot of research grants and maybe get your name in the history books is a pretty strong motivation to seek out new ideas in science.
Planetary billiards is not an alternative theory. It violates the most basic known laws of physics, like conservation of momentum.
> Overall, all I am saying to you very briefly, is that in my
> research at least, Venus bears all the hallmarks of being a
> very recent addition to our family of planets.
Research in what, though? Are you following the Velikovsky path of piecing together bits of mythology and then claiming it is scientifically valid? If you can provide a coherent re-interpretation of actual scientific data, that's one thing. If you're just going to assert clear impossibilities based on selected fragments of mythologies you're wasting everyone's time.
Like ancient Rome, we today are once more importing every form of exotic superstition in the hope of finding the right remedy for our sickness.
-- C. G. Jung
Richard Wilhelm: In Memoriam (1930), CW 15: pg. 60