Re: How to prove the metaphysical
Wed, 25 Dec 1996 18:04:56 -0500

Rivka wrote:
>I have a very strong belief in the metaphysical, but all my lecturers think
>Im crazy. how do I prove it to them? I can not be satisfied that my own
>belief is true, unless I find satisfactory answers to all their queries
>(even if they wont belive them, because they don't want to).

>I belive that Torah and science complement each other, and that physical
>and metaphysical are no contradiction, but Im not knowledgeable enough to
>take on the entire Cognitive Science department by myself! Any bright ideas
>anyone? scientific reports where metaphysical phenomena are shown to be
>statistically significant would be especially useful.

I think that the best evidence for the metaphysical is the large number of
things that happen that cannot be explained by the laws of physics. Having
said that, I don't think you can prove the existence of the metaphysical,
because our Western notions of proof have a reductiveness built into them
that almost excludes the existence of such things as the metaphysical.

The better approach is to try to demonstrate the rationality of believing
in the metaphysical, so that your teachers cannot undermine your position.
Antony Kenny, an Oxford don who resigned the Catholic priesthood, wrote a
book called "What is faith?". The first chapter demonstrates convincingly
that there are other legitimate grounds for belief than the empirical, and
this ought to be good enough for your teachers.

Mark Sheinfield