Science is the systematic, quantitative approach to the natural world that constructs and describes evidence in the form of tests and predictions about that world. By contrast, philosophy attempts to settle questions about the natural world without relying on science as a method of investigation. Both philosophy and science have an influence on our understanding of the world around us and our place in it. However, unlike sciences, which are largely independent of each other and seek to explain their results independently of each other, philosophies frequently depend on science as a source of information about how to find out what the facts are. For example, even though many psychologists agree that most behavior patterns are caused by genetic causes, the theories of cognitive and behavioral psychology rely on the evidence accumulated by scientists over the course of many generations.
Science and philosophy often work together, especially in the scientific study of the world around us. Both science and philosophy attempt to answer questions about nature, using different techniques and statistical methods. Many theories in science are testable, meaning that they can be checked against specific examples. In addition, some theories in science are hypothesis-based, which means that they are based on fewer facts than the tested hypotheses. The existence of a particular set of data cannot be proved or disproved, but it can still be compared to other sets of data.
On the other hand, most theories in philosophy do not have tests associated with them, making them less testable. Philosophy also tends to be more independent of established fact, frequently disregarding the input of scientists and other professionals. In addition, the field of philosophy is often less focused upon than is science, as many philosophers argue that knowledge about nature is possible and important even without empirical evidence. In effect, philosophy can often be considered a purer form of science.
Both science and philosophy have made great contributions to our society through discoveries and inventions. However, although both philosophies are important, not all theories of the former are directly applicable to the latter. For instance, while belief in evolution is a commonly held belief in the realm of science, many people in the scientific community still subscribe to a theory of evolution called ” methodological naturalism.” This version of methodological naturalism asserts that all facts about the universe and its workings can be adequately explained by using only observed phenomena. As a result, those who hold to this view do not readily accept the concept of chance as an influencing factor in the universe, unlike those who adhere to a belief in intelligent, intentional action.
The two philosophies do share some similarities, including a rejection of arbitrary truths and a strong commitment to rigorous experimentation and observation. However, the areas in which they differ significantly are often significant, as is the fact that philosophy can often be descriptive rather than predictive of the real world, and science has yet to provide any method for testing the truth of its predictions. Philosophy can often be used to explain how different phenomena occur, but it does not in general provide a scientific explanation for how things happen. On the other hand, science attempts to provide an explanation for how things happen, but often has trouble doing so in a purely deductive manner.
The relationship between philosophy and science is a complex one, and not without cause for concern. Science has many great ideas that have been developed through the study of philosophy, and as a result it often uses philosophy as a major tool for explaining phenomena. However, when applying philosophy to science, it is important for scientists to remember that many of the results that they discover are merely suggestive. It would be very difficult to test every hypothesis regarding a specific problem, because most will be considered to be unexplained. Philosophy can also play a role in developing new theories for explanation, but it is not as important as it used to be, and in fact is becoming more rare as the number of unified theories grows.