PZ Myers: You can’t say something is real but can’t be examined

How to Determine Something is Real

You can’t say something is “real”, and then claim it exhibits none of the properties of any other real objects, and can’t ever be examined or analyzed empirically. That’s pretty much a good definition of “not real”.

- PZ Myers

Quote Source: Free Thought Blogs

Zaphod's picture
Interesting way of putting it

Interesting way of putting it, but I would put it this way: If you can't prove it exist then why bother trying to talk about it as if its real for anything other than a mental exercise or fodder for the imagination. Both are great things to practice, but lets not begin believing what we or others conjure in the realm of imagination a.k.a. fantasy is real without first proving it. Its important to know the difference between what can't be proven to exist and reality.

Zaphod's picture
Don't get me wrong, I do mean

Don't get me wrong, I do mean to say using the imagination is a great thing to do and is a great mental exercise but its important to discern between imagination and real life.

The use of imagination has lead to many discoveries in both logic and in the real world it helps us to do things with minimal effort compared to what it would take to pull something off in a real world environment. it helps us to determine possible outcomes before applying technique to test for or avoid them.

Finally, imagination is one of the most powerful tools we have and it's important to use it or keep in practice our use of it. So for this reason I don't mind talking about things like god or the origin of the universe but in reality with no way to prove any of these things how can I really think them any more than a theory or conjuration of the mind.

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