Naturalism and Its Alternatives in Scientific Methodologies

Many volumes have addressed the question of whether or not naturalism is a required part of scientific methodology. However, few, if any, go any further into the many concerns that arise from a rejection of naturalism. If methodological naturalism is rejected, what replaces it? If science is not naturalistic, what defines science? If naturalism is rejected, what is gained and what is lost? How does the practice of science change? What new avenues would be available, and how would they be investigated?

This volume is divided into three parts. The first part considers the question of methodological naturalism and its role in the demarcation problem - deciding what is science and what isn't. The second part discusses the impacts that different boundaries have on scientific thought in a general way. Finally, the third part looks at how non-naturalistic methodologies can be beneficially incorporated into specific fields, and how in a few cases non-naturalistic methodologies have already been successfully incorporated into certain fields.

This volume represents the results of the 2016 Conference on Alternatives to Methodological Naturalism conference previously held by The Blyth Institute.

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ISBN: 978-1-944918-07-1

Publication Date: April 1, 2017

Editors: Jonathan Bartlett and Eric Holloway

Authors: Jonathan Bartlett, Eric Holloway, Tom Gilson, Mario A. Lopez, James C. LeMaster, James D. Johansen, Arminius Mignea, Noel Rude, Sam S. Rakover, Salvador Cordova 

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction

    Part I: Naturalism and the Demarcation Problem 
  2. Philosophical Shortcomings of Methodological Naturalism and the Path Forward
  3. Methodological Naturalism, Methodological Theism, and Regularism
  4. Design as a Criterion of Demarcation

    Part II: Incorporating Non-Naturalistic Thinking into Academic Study 
  5. The Relationship of Bacon, Teleology, and Analogy to the Doctrine of Methodological Naturalism
  6. Applied Theology: Exploring the Utility of Theological Method in Scientific Research with Genome Research as an Example
  7. Describable but not Predictable: Mathematical Modeling and Non-Naturalistic Causation
  8. Methodological Naturalism and Its Creation Story
  9. Problems with Non-Naturalistic Theories of Science

    Part III: Alternatives to Naturalism in Specific Fields 
  10. Computer Science: Imagination Sampling
  11. Linguistics: Grammatical Relations
  12. Psychology: Methodological Dualism and a Multi-Explanation Framework-An Approach Needed for Understanding Behavior
  13. Biology: Gambler's Epistemology vs. Insistence on Impractical Naturalism-The Unwitting Half-Billion Dollar Wager by the NIH Against Evolutionary Theory
  14. Other Non-Naturalistic Methodologies in Modern Practice