Can We Have Genuine Knowledge Of An Extrinsic Cause Using Only Logic?

Can we have genuine knowledge of a cause and reason about it’s nature without the use of science?

It seems to me that the resistance i see towards Theistic arguments (mainly from Aquinas) seems to be based on a perceived epistemological problem usually brought up by atheists. It is the idea that the only reliable knowledge is scientific knowledge, and causes cannot reliably be known outside of that method. It is often said that scientific knowledge is open to change and correction while reason by itself is not and remains open to error that cannot be resolved.

Obviously you will find that i disagree because i think those who make this argument are making a contextual error; this is to say they are conflating the objective of science with the objective of metaphysics or philosophy in general. But what do you think?

I don’t have much to contribute on this point, but I’ve run into a similar roadblock, specifically from those who subscribe to some type of German Idealism.

So, in regards to that, I’ve purchased a couple books on Thomist/realist epistemology, philosophy of knowledge, and a response to the so-called Critical Problem.

I haven’t read them yet so I can’t give my own stamp of approval.

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What you’re referring to, though, is what I see more and more called Scientism. Those who use it basically take their epistemological and metaphysical grounding for granted and it’s just terribly inconsistent.

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By idealism are you referring to whether or not there is an extrinsic reality or causes existing apart from our minds?

It’s not there isn’t, it’s just that they hold there’s a skeptical problem between things as they are and the representations we have of those things in our mind. The universal form of a thing isn’t real or existing in nature. The universal forms only exist in our minds as ideals which we then apply to what we sense.

A German Idealist would probably say I’m butchering their worldview, and if there are any here I’d invite them to correct. I just have to be quick right now.

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What do you mean with extrinsic cause?

I just mean an objective cause that we do not have self-evident knowledge of. Probably the wrong word to use.

Yes. There is an extrinsic cause since we constantly react and cause. We experience, decide and cause. This is the cycle. Experience requires an extrinsic cause.

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