25 February, 2018

Dialectical Physics

Naum Gabo

The Philosophical Premises of a Dialectical Physics

There is a Major Crisis in Theoretical Physics.

In spite of being told, on every hand, that we are witnessing a triumph in the subject, we are being asked to applaud a process that is causing ever-increasing contradictions, so devastating in fact, that already by the Solvay Conference in 1927 the Primary Purpose of Science had been abandoned:

To Explain Physical Reality!

This was deemed henceforth impossible, and wholly replaced by merely Describing-It-Formally and Predicting-Outcomes-without-Causes: and to do all this entirely via Mathematics and Experience - by Formulae and Pragmatism alone.

The original source of this crisis is in fact very old, and has caused increasing problems for millennia, alongside very successful technological systems, until finally the very foundations of Physical Theory were shown to be compromised fundamentally, with absolutely NO evident theoretical solution available.

So, explanatory Theory was shelved, and the obviously useable technological methods, involving advanced Mathematics and Pragmatism, were installed instead as the new "Theory" and "Practice". But, the old productive dynamic tensions between Explanatory Theory and Formal Description were lost forever - Thereafter Mathematics ruled OK!

The core of the problem was never realised, as a pragmatic solution had long ago been devised, which, most of the time anyway, allowed some real progress to continue, propped up by an effective, enabling trick! The foundational mistake was the Principle of Plurality. And, the pragmatic frig was "If it works, it is right!" The former patched-up the basic Theory, while the latter overcame any contradictory rational impasses.

And, most important of all, the technologists, doing what they always do best, soon learned how to drastically adjust-and-maintain both investigative and productive situations to get very close to conforming to the Principle of Plurality.

But this impasse must be transcended! 

So, SHAPE Blog, realising the inadequacies of this short Introduction, will regularly publish short informative papers, developing these ideas, and will subsequently publish a series of dedicated Issues of SHAPE Journal to finish the job.

This is important!

And it will only be available from this source...

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