Can Everything be Rationally Explained Everywhere in the World?

Gerhard Vollmer

Abstract


Vollmer belongs to the most prominent German naturalists. The paper contains in a programmatic way the main theses a naturalist has to adopt according to Vollmer’s understanding. Guiding principle of his understanding of naturalism is that “everything can be rationally explained everywhere in the world.” For putting this principle into practice Vollmer relies on the results of natural science and critical rationalism. The scientific method shall be applied wherever we can apply it. Where we cannot apply it hypotheses must be economical in their ontological postulates and in their explanatory means. Furthermore they are to be criticizable. The principle of economy and of criticizability tip the balance against the assumption of entities beyond human experience: Souls, angels, or God are imaginable but dispensable for the observation, explanation and interpretation of the world.

Keywords


20th century philosophy; metaphysics; philosophy; Wittgenstein Ludwig; complexity; evolution; materialism; metaphysics; miracle; philosophical naturalism; realism; unity of science; worldview

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