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Why beliefs matter : reflections on the nature of science / E. Brian Davies.

By: Davies, E. B. (Edward Brian).
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookPublisher: Oxford : Oxford University Press, 2011, c2010Description: x, 250 p. : ill. ; 24 cm.ISBN: 9780199586202 (hbk.); 0199586209.Subject(s): Religion and science -- History | Mathematics -- Philosophy -- HistoryDDC classification:
The scientific revolution. Early memories ; The scientific method ; The new astronomy ; The mechanical philosophy ; The impact of technology ; The laws of motion ; Universal gravitation ; Induction -- The human condition. The arrow of time ; Reductionism ; Determinism ; The mind-body problem ; The blank slate theory ; Plato, Popper, Penrose -- The nature of mathematics. An early influence ; Pluralism in mathematics ; Mathematical platonism ; What is mathematics? ; The infinite ; The mathematical brain ; The Mandelbrot set ; The mathematical consensus ; The argument from physics ; Mathematical truth ; Is our mathematics inevitable? ; The irrelevance of Platonism -- Sense and nonsense. Fundamental constants ; Panspermia ; The standard model ; A philosophical digression ; The multiverse ; In praise of observation ; Machine intelligence ; Simulated universes ; Discussion -- Science and religion. Varieties of belief ; The anthropic principle ; The existence of God ; God's nature and acts ; Life after death ; Keith Ward.
Summary: This book explains that the multi-layered nature of our present descriptions of the world is unavoidable, not because of anything about the world but because of our own human natures. It tries to rescue mathematics from the singular and exceptional status that it has been assigned, as much by those who understand it as by those who do not. It provides direct quotations from many of the important contributors to its subject, and concludes with a penetrating criticism of many of the recent contributions to the often acrimonious debates about science and religions. --from publisher description
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Book Science Museum Wroughton
Library D2 Store: STS Books
Science & Technology Studies Collection 215:93 DAVIES (Browse shelf) Available 240255730X

Includes bibliographical references and index.

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