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You can find some neat things when you use the "most recently updated blogs" list. For example, the archetypally frightening blog linked in the last post. But sometimes you run across something genuinely interesting. Like this post. The content isn't so interesting (to me at least, since I know little about "energy medicine"). And she has fairly dismissive words for "occult" traditions. Yet instead of rejecting anything associated with chi or prana or what have you, she is translating their substantive, useful content -- the medical observations that connect them to the real world -- into her own Christian metaphysical framework. This sort of points out some ideas I've had recently about the nature of knowledge. By knowledge I mean any sort of explanation of some aspect of existence. Knowledge, it seems, must be verified in some way -- that is, shown to be useful. There are two main types of verification. External verification means that knowledge is tested against data from your senses. Internal verification means that knowledge is tested against the requirements of your own brain -- is it comprehensible, does it make meaningful sense out of the world, is it intellectually satisfying, etc. In a very crude way, you could say that science is a system of external verification, while religion (and to some extent all the humanities) is a system of internal verification. The two systems -- physics and metaphysics, so to speak -- are linked, so a change in one may require adaptation in another. At the moment I'm tempted to see metaphysics as a sort of spuerstructure, integrating and making sense of externally verified data. It provides a kind of language in which to express externally verified propositions, which can thus be translated back and forth between different metaphysical systems.


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