[Sca-cooks] Questions on theory and proof

Celia des Archier CeliadesArchier at cox.net
Sun Feb 7 03:19:35 PST 2010

Daniel, wearing his scientist hat said: 
> One can never prove a negative we can only seek to provide 
> reasonable assurance.

Precisely!  I once tried to explain this to a very young, idealistic
atheist... The difficulty behind proving a negative, especially the
"non-existence" of anything is that something which does not exist does not
create data, therefore you're left with simply deducing from lack of data,
which is very flawed, logically speaking.  

> That being said absence of proof is 
> not proof of absence.  

Absolutely true!

>It does however in some cases suggest 
> where to look for proof.

I'd enjoy hearing you expand on the last, however... In what way does absence
of proof suggest where to look for proof? 

At any rate, what you've said is precisely why I say that staying open to
further discovery is a more scientific approach.  I have the greatest respect
for scientists who say, "We can't prove it to be true, so we don't accept it
to be true... But we're open reviewing contradictory data."  Just as I have
the greatest respect for historians who say, "Given the data we've thus far
uncovered, we favor this interpretation..." while accepting the fact that
there are new discoveries every day which may shine a different light on their

In service, 

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