Cool Hand wrote:The General Theory of Relativity is indeed falsifiable. That simply means it can be tested. Whether or not it had been proven to be consistent with relevant data gathered using sound experiments to test it is irrelevant. Falisible simply means subject to being tested experimentally.
Does it? I rather think it means subject to being conclusively disproven
experimentally, which is distinctly different from simple testability. Many more things that can be tested than can be shown to be false.
Of course, as Huntsman notes above, Einstein's GTR was indeed later empirically tested and found to be consistent with all known data.
All known data? I don't think so. There are plenty of anomalies that Einsteinian interpretations do not explain while Lorentzian or Millerian ones do. See Miller's interferometer experiments and Cahill's application of their results to quantum foam theory.
Very massive objects do indeed bend light to a measurable degree using sound methods of testing.
Sure, but that's only a small part of Relativity. I wouldn't call that datum confirmation of Einsteinian relativity as a whole.
Even if the GTR had never been empirically verified, it remains falsifiable.
If you mean falsifiable in the sense of testable or disprovable here?
Examing the theory that a creator of the universe exists or ever existed, as in one similar to the Christian God (not some nebulous notion of a prime mover, which could apply even to Alan Guth's inflationary theory), is not falsifiable, even in principle. That is to say that no empirical test can ever be designed and practiced which could provide reliable data relevant to the theory.
If you disagree, I'd love to hear of your idea for such an empirical test.
I don't disagree in the least; I just don't really care. Empiricism is simply not a methodology that I would apply to theological claims unless said claims were scientific in nature (ie, Young Earth Creationism).
You shouldn't. Metaphysical claims are by definition outside the realm of scientific study or examination.
Okay. Then why use falsifiability as a standard to determine the acceptability of a metaphysical claim if metaphyics is outside the real of empirical examination?
Scientists don't concern themselves with them in laboratories. They might speculate on or ponder them as armchair amateur philosophers, but they know that it is merely that---speculation not subject to testing, and therefore, unanswerable.
I'm not sure I understand you here. There are plenty of scientists with strongly held beliefs outside the purview of their fields. Just because a given claim is not falsifiable doesn't mean it's not answerable.
I don't know why skeptics should try to assign truth values to metaphysical claims.
They do, though, or else every skeptic would be agnostic on all non-material claims. Martin Gardner leaps to instantly to mind.
Furthermore, without it as axiomatic, science wouldn't make much sense. I do recognize that defining that worldview, or any other for that matter, is indeed making it an axiom. That's fine. There has to be some given starting point upon which to construct a logical, internally consistent worldview.
Sure, but that means you do not apply falsifiability to your foundational beliefs which from what I can see, is the same thing theists do.
Good to see you too.