Via YouTube: “Cosmic Journeys-Is The Universe Infinite?”

Towards the end of the video, it’s suggested that the physical sciences have now separated themselves from the binds of metaphysics (or as I presume, the binds of certain kinds of metaphysics:  Aristotelian, in the case of Galileo and cosmology in the 16th century and onwards).

We have perhaps returned to open questions of infinity as posed by the pre-Socratics, and freed such high-end mathematical thinking from many a metaphysician, or natural philosopher, or theologian; thus establishing natural science as a confluence and continuance of Enlightenment development.  Onward we go.  Of course this view, while possibly accurate, relies on its own assumptions.

As sent in by a reader: Kelly Ross makes the Kantian metaphysical argument here:

“Kant does not think we can know, or even imagine, the universe as either finite or infinite, in space or in time, because space and time are only forms of perception and cannot be imagined or visualized as absolute wholes. The universe, as the place of things in themselves, is not in space or in time and so is neither finite nor infinite in space or in time. Thus there cannot be an a priori, rational or metaphysical, cosmology.”

And while this may have freed Kant from the metaphysical disputes of his day, especially both Rationalist and Empiricist as he synthesized both, what do the current thinkers about such matters stand to gain by being tied into Kantian metaphysics (his Copernican revolution)?

Addition:   As I’ve discussed with many people, I don’t have a specific answer as of now.  Kant was deeply tied in to Newton’s laws, and stayed abreast of the developments of his day (Any metaphysician of similar weight would probably have to deal with Einstein, QED etc) .  He wanted to put metaphysics on the same footing as the sciences, and it’s doubtful he succeeded.  The rest of us are picking through what he did achieve, which has been highly influential.

Related On This Site:  Via The University Of British Colombia: Kant-Summary Of Essential PointsFrom Bryan Magee’s Talking Philosophy On Youtube: Geoffrey Warnock On KantSunday Quotation: From Jonathan Bennett On KantRoger Scruton At The WSJ: ‘Memo To Hawking: There’s Still Room For God’

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