Stan writes:

Popper's contribution of falsification is only valid to point, that point being, "which of the premises for falsifying are valid?" As Stove has shown this produces a similar infinite regression to that of the original proposition / syllogism. However, it can be practical as in the simple case of the black swans falsifying the statement "All swans I have seen are white, therefore all swans are white" (induction). However, falsification is far from a sure thing in complex cases.

I’m puzzled by this objection, because we should all know that a logically sound argument may still be rejected if we conclude there is good reason to doubt the truth of one its premises. Correct me if I’m wrong, Stan, but I don’t think Popper proposed falsifiability as a truth criterion, but rather as a criteria for whether or not a claim could be investigated scientifically. I want to make it clear that, for me, I’m not in the ‘Truth Business’ when I’m practicing science. I think of myself as being in the ‘Model-Building and Testing Business’, and have a modest confidence in science as compared with other methods in most circumstances.

Stan then writes:

The intent here is to try to move OUTSIDE science. The question is whether there is any evidence that might not be meaningful to tactile science, yet might be considered valid in the pursuit of reality outside the clutches of functional naturalism?

OK, Stan, I get that, but it seems to me you’ve really stepped in it now. Believe me, I would like nothing more than to be convinced that there’s a way to connect the dots between ‘evidence’ and ‘belief.’ I would love to be able to reason my way to faith, or at least intellectual assent to the reality of the supernatural. But here’s the thing: if I can’t also connect the dots between those claims and purely natural causes, then practically speaking, I’m not making much headway. It remains but a metaphysical stance only. So we can have that conversation, if you like, but I hope you understand the burden lies with you.

Remember, the question for me is not whether or not I assent to the existence of a realm outside naturalism, because (after all) I hold pretty conventional Christian beliefs. To me, the question is whether or not you can reason your way to such a position on the basis of evidence. For now, I’ll forego the question of whether or not either of us possess an ‘internal faculty of discrimination’ that's valid, etc.....if only to give you a fighting chance, Because, Stan, that hill you want to climb ?....it’s steep, brother.

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