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Are the sciences an epistemic hierarchy (purely deductive first: maths, then empirical: physics, chemistry, biology, psychology, sociology)?

Is this accurate? If not, what would you change?


Ps whether or not you include the social sciences of psychology and sociology

Update 2:

@Michael, surely changing the order goes against the idea of a hierarchy?

8 Answers

  • 2 weeks ago

    I wouldn't put them into a hierarchy; both deduction and empiricism are necessary, but perhaps philosophy itself is the grandfather of all science.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    * A scientific inquiry consists of a question and a response. An answer only counts as an answer if it has a reason for being true. If it has no reason for being true, it is simply a meaningless statement (which can mean either "I don't know" or "I don't understand"). Thus, an answer to the question "Is physics an epistemic hierarchy?" has no reason for being true or false, unless it has some good reason for being true.

    * The philosopher is not trying to find out the nature of the reality he is studying, but instead only tries to find out the nature of the thing he is studying. Thus, the philosopher is not looking for a philosophical answer to the question, "Is science an epistemic hierarchy?" but rather the nature of the question itself, whether the question can be addressed without philosophical answers. The question must have an answer which makes a logical sense. That answer, of course, cannot give a reason for being true, only a reason for being valid. (In science, what a scientist does is deduce, or construct, a proper explanation for why the phenomena is what it is. If it is not in his science to deduce an explanation, then it is irrelevant to the question of whether physics is an epistemic hierarchy.)

    * Therefore, the question must be able to be answered without referring to scientific explanations. To be answered without reference to scientific explanations is to be meaningless (which can mean either "I don't know" or "I don't understand"). Thus, the question "Is physics an epistemic hierarchy?" must have some good reason for being true or false.

    * In order for the question "Is physics an epistemic hierarchy?" to have a good reason for being true, it must have a good reason for being valid. The question must have some good reason for being true, and it must have a good reason for being valid. It must have good reasons for being true and for being valid. Both answers are not only equally, but also entirely valid. If the answer for a good reason, but for a bad reason, is the good answer, then the answer is meaningless; the question is not an epistemic hierarchy.

  • ?
    Lv 5
    1 month ago

    I wrote about this in my systems theory. Discovered recently, the hierarchy of the sciences. Have a look at one of the diagrams that represent the levels of reality and you will find those  sciences on it. Tie in some cosmology and you will have a grand unified theory. 

    BQ: Psychology and sociology are surface level and group level/eco level.

  • Joe
    Lv 4
    1 month ago

    I would throw it all out and just say science is the art of looking for a question better than the last question.

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  • 2 months ago

    I figure the first thinker saw he had more than one fish.  Or perhaps that he had none and needed one or two for some reason.  Probably hunger.  And then perhaps the small family, hungry for more, needed four or five fish.  They needed one spread out hand full of fish.  Or perhaps it grew to ten fish in the end.  Imagine having to count enough food for the whole tribe once it got big and counting was needed to encompass its needs.  Oh how complicated we have become.  Philosophy, psychology, medicine, math, etc. etc..  All developed due to some need or other. 

  • j153e
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    Would note that "certitude" qua deductive maths and logics is fundamentally uncertain; that such certitude is typically quite useful re assessing physis; and that such physis-certitude is correlated with the (apparent) Energy-structuring of physis:  the more fundamental or basic the geometrization, the more accurate the metrics, hence the higher the "certitude."  Ironically, not only the maths and logics are godelianly fundamentally and necessarily incomplete...the most accurate certainty, found in quantum mechanics, is also metrically fundamentally uncertain.

    Observer bias is highest among the least-quantified/most opinionated "sciences," e.g. sociology. 

    That said, if the criterion of epistemic certitude is framed as something other than atom-counting, then a Scriptural verse, a Shakespearean play, a Beethoven symphony, a sunrise or sunset, an emerald, may have more epistemic truth.

  • Anonymous
    2 months ago

    I wouldn't include psychology or sociology (not sciences).

  • 2 months ago

    I do think it's accurate. I don't think changing the order matters.

    lol i forgot about that part

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