How can we know that reality is not limited to the physical world?

#1

Do you think that reality is purely physical?

There is a claim that says that all things can be traced to a physical cause, e.g. people say that love is physical because it is a result of chemical reactions in the brain.

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#2

People mistakenly take science to be a superior metaphysics. But that is obviously false for anybody who understands the epistemological limitations of the scientific method.

In the experience of love and even in the action of loving somebody we discover it’s meaning, and it is only by that meaning that we comprehend what it is - love. It’s not by the observation of physical structures that we come to know this. Without that meaning we would not know what love is because we wouldn’t experience it. We can artificially stimulate a sense of meaning, but we also find real meaning in the expression of our emotional natures. Meaning is not something that is physically quantifiable - it’s not a physical object, so it doesn’t make rational sense to reduce everything in our experiences to physics alone. It’s like arguing that the measurable words in a book are metaphysically identical in nature to the meaning they represent just because we only see the words. Materialism is an error and is a very shallow and unjustified assumption about the world.

The fact that our experience of that meaning is initiated by bio-chemical reactions is irrelevant. Science is the study of physical reality and it is not the job of science to reduce everything to physics. That is merely the quest of some philosophers pretending to have the authority of science on their side.

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#3

We can’t know in the way we can prove physical realities, but we do understand that there are concepts that can’t be pinned down, such as beauty or justice.
It’s not an enormous leap to non-physical realities such as the concept of “soul”.

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#4

By this logic then we are just another species of animal. However we have a human soul and free will, which they don’t.

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#5

Just don’t play around with Black Magic -
or use love voo doo spells -
Trust in Jesus and use honest2goodness primal prayer !

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#6

There are lots of claims out there. But love, like beauty and truth and life and existence themselves, is trascendent, mysterious, and certainly not explainble by naturalistic or materialistic means-not yet anyway. Until they are, I’d rather stand in the awe that those things call for. Makes life way more interesting and meaningful.

I don’t know why we think we’re so smart for dragging everything down into the mundane anyway. The endeavor is almost fear/pride driven I tend to think.

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#7

Real hard physical reality isn’t so hard or real as you might think. Have you ever seen anything about the quantum world? Very strange and yet it’s all around us. Sometimes parts of reality disappear and pop up somewhere else!

Our idea of reality isn’t real either, it’s a mental construct based only on our five senses, or six if you’re talking to a cat or dog maybe.

Reality also includes other things we’ve never seen, like the view of Pluto from mars, or further into space where very odd things happen like black holes.

And then there’s heaven, and all sorts to do with our faith, they exist too.
Reality was a word created before we knew reality wasn’t real I think.

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#8

No. There is mind and physical.

People says right. We however don’t know what is going on in our brains when we feel love.

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#9

I have a liberal definition of reality. There are spiritual realities. Reality means that which exists. Reality means that which is true. The physical world exists and therefore is part of reality.

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#10

I would actually recommend you pick up a book called Aquinas a Beginners Guide by Edward Feser. Then perhaps Scholastic Metaphysics, a Contemporary Introduction by the same author (if you want more meat than what you get in the first few chapters of the first book). We tend to look at the world through a physical perspective (atoms and such are the fundamental level of reality), but it’s actually without good reason. Metaphysics is what underlies science, it’s how we interpret the scientific facts that we discover and there’s multiple ways to interpret the same data. As of the enlightenment we have begun to take a more mathematical view of the world, but this simply isn’t the best way of looking at things as there are some (many) logical inconsistencies with doing so, even though modern science has increase technology significantly. Read some of that literiture and I think you’ll come to the conclusion that I came too also. We’re asking the wrong questions because we look at the material world in the wrong way. Cheers and love!

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#11

When Jesus said His words are “spirit and life” that covers the seen and unseen, it covers everything that is.

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closed #12

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