A friend of mine recently sent me this video link below. The first 11 minutes or so is a simplified restatement of what is supposedly current science. I have no way of knowing whether it is accurate or not, but regardless of that, once they get to about the 12 minute mark, they begin to assert that quantum physics establishes that mind creates reality, I think they are way over any line of reasonableness. After the 12 minute mark it gets worse and worse. The further you go the clearer it is that the purpose of the video from the beginning was to advocate such "mind over matter" assertions pointing to theism and/or Platonic idealism.
This is pretty much the beginning of what I object to around 12:22, but it gets a lot worse:
And this is the full video:
I have seen this kind of reasoning alluded to many times before, and one of these days I would like to see if we can produce something in response to materials of this type and perhaps this one in particular.
My general expectation is that much of the observational data explained in the first part of the video is accurately reported, but that the conclusions drawn from those observations are not the only ones that can be drawn, and because those conclusions conflict with other aspects of human reality, those conclusions are invalid.
I ran this by Martin, and he suggested that I be sure to note "that we are not interested in wasting our time to debate/refute every nonsense which is out there, but we want to make sure that our friends are aware of such examples of science being misrepresented by charlatans to fool people into believing nonsense."
I know that only a limited subset of people here at Epicureanfriends.com are motivated to pursue this issue, and probably a smaller number of those are qualified to attack it with any legitimate expectations of producing a thorough refutation.
But one of the purposes of this forum is to "group-source" the work that needs to be done in keeping people from being led astray by false philosophies, and surely issues involving Physics are uniquely of interest to those raised in Lucretius and the details of Epicurean philosophy. So with that I'll launch the thread and hope over time we can develop a productive approach to responding to things of this type.
At the very least, perhaps we can begin to compile a list of sources and/or authorities (Victor Stenger?) who are ahead of us in responding to these assertions.
In the meantime, here is a quote from Lucian's "Aristotle the Oracle-Monger" which seems appropriate:
And at this point, my dear Celsus, we may, if we will be candid, make some allowance for these Paphlagonians and Pontics; the poor uneducated ‘fat-heads’ might well be taken in when they handled the serpent—a privilege conceded to all who choose—and saw in that dim light its head with the mouth that opened and shut. It was an occasion for a Democritus, nay, for an Epicurus or a Metrodorus, perhaps, a man whose intelligence was steeled against such assaults by skepticism and insight, one who, if he could not detect the precise imposture, would at any rate have been perfectly certain that, though this escaped him, the whole thing was a lie and an impossibility.