What is Naturalism ?

There are different views about what we call “naturalism” – in philosophy, science and everyday life.I suppose it’s not about “naturalism in painting,” the most natural representation of things or the like.

First ofall, nature is the opposite of culture.Anything that has been manipulated or changed by humans belongs to culture.Anything that has not been changed by humans therefore belongs to nature.Naturalism therefore deals with all things that have not been directly changed by us.

The philosopher Wittgenstein provided the most apt definition, although he did not use the term “nature”.In the Tractatus Logicus Philosophicus he writes:

“The world is all that is the case.”

I take over this in order to define nature, and thus naturalism:

Nature is all that is the case, that is, the sum of all facts.This includes not knowing all the facts – some are not yet, some never.

Naturalism in the natural sciences therefore deals with everything we can observe in facts and thus forms models of how things work when left to their own devices – regardless of the specific position of an observer. in time and space.Every fact is observable in principle, but perhaps not up-to-date. The number of olives that Aristotle has eaten in his life is an unknown fact forever. It is not to be denied that there has to be a number, but you cannot tell.

Caution: Naturalism, especially in the natural sciences, is often equated with materialism, with polemical-depreciating intent.Materialism is the view that matter is all there is. But naturalism deals with all the facts, whether they are material or not.”1 + 1 = 2″ is a natural fact, defined by human beings, but independent of their will, their subjective point of view and their faith, so it is a fact that belongs to naturalism. Whether they are considered material or intangible does not matter.

The laws of nature are derived from the observable behaviour of things – these are descriptionsof nature in model form.These are not laws that dictate to nature how to behave – as little as the description of an image dictates to the image what it looks like or should look like.

Caution: There are esoteric, occult and religious notions that there is something third besides culture and nature, which is called “transcendence” or “the supernatural”.We remember: Nature is all that has not been changed by man. What then should “above nature” mean? Either it belongs to culture, or to nature, or you are not sure, or you do not know. “Supernatural” and “transcendent” arbitrarily excludes a part of nature about which we know nothing and slams it into another sphere that supposedly does not belong to nature.But this is an arbitrary part of what we do not know – the terms ultimately mean nothing more than “ignorance”, i.e. the part of the world that we could not/cannot observe. They, so to speak, separate an area of “special ignorance” from the field of “ignorance”, without being able to specify criteria for this.

It is therefore clear that if there were God or telekinesis, they are components of nature that should not be split off purely arbitrarily.If God exists, it is a fact, so God belongs to nature. It may not belong to the material part of nature, but naturalism is not the same as materialism. If God does not belong to nature, he belongs to culture, that is, people have come up with it. In any case, if it exists, it belongs to that part of the world about which we know nothing. So when a believer speaks of a “supernatural cause,” he says that the cause is unknown, but means that he knowsit.It’s a self-contradiction – he claims to know something he doesn’t know. In other words, he pretends to know what he doesn’tknow.This is exactly the definition of religiousfaith.

One can also put it this way: when someone talks about a “supernatural cause”, he assumes a different cause than it occurs in naturalism (there are only material causes, something else has not been observed so far), which violates basic principles of physics. violates the energy conservation rates.Science does not deal with the supernatural because it does not deal with nonsense. However, the minimum criterion that a statement must meet for science to deal with it is the inner logical freedom ofcontradiction.As soon as someone talks about “supernatural,” they violate it. This is not, as is often claimed, a boundary between science, but the boundary between meaning and nonsense.

Naturalism is per se limitless.There is a limit, which is what we can observe, but that limit is constantly being extended. A few years ago, you couldn’t make gravitational waves visible – now you can. Before, it was not even known whether they existed at all, they were a prediction by Einstein, i.e. a logical conclusion derived from a law of nature (model presentation). Whether this is true, however, can only be determined by means of observations. Naturalism thus proceeds both empirically and rationally, while in esotericism, occultism and religion no empirical, systematic observations play a role – these are worldviews that do not look at the world, but on purely spiritual reflection.A lot of that is fantasy.

When Einstein said, “Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind,” he meant his understanding of religion.As he put it: “… the sublimeness and wonderful order revealed in nature and in the world of thought. The religious geniuses of all times were distinguished by this cosmic religiosity, which knows no dogmas and no God that would be thought of in the image of men. There can therefore also be no church whose main teaching content is based on cosmic religiosity”. The basis of Einstein’s cosmic religiosity was therefore the feeling of amazement in the face of a largely ordered nature. This is often abused by using a different definition of religiosity than Einstein meant and defined.

One can therefore reproduce the quotation in this way: science without wonder (about nature, its order, including the order of spiritual things) is lame, wonder without science is blind.

The driving force of naturalism – the naturalistic method of science – is therefore the astonishment at the order of things and the desire to find and describe the order behind it, through observation and modelling (logical deriving of rules from the systematically recorded observation data).You can’t draw any boundaries to this quest, the only limit is what we currently have in observations, but collecting the data knows no end, so the boundary flows, it expands continuously. Any new observation can change the models – the laws of nature are also fluid. Any new observation can violate the previously found adopted rules, then the rules must be changed and adjusted, because they are models with which one tries to find a precise description of the rules of the empirical data.

This is what scientists understand by naturalism: the study of the natural, non-man-made rules by which things in our world behave as far as we observe them or make them accessible to our observation. to be able to.The driving force for this is the astonishment at what we see, and without this astonishment, science would have no drive, it would be lame. But without science, we would also be blind to nature.

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