Chapter

Realism and the No‐Miracles Argument

Colin Howson

in Hume's Problem

Published in print November 2000 | ISBN: 9780198250371
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191597749 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0198250371.003.0004
 Realism and the No‐Miracles Argument

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Considers the increasingly popular, so‐called ‘No‐Miracles’ argument that we do have a valid inductive argument for supposing that our current theories, at any rate in physics, are substantially, if not wholly, true: it would be incredibly improbable that theories very far from the truth could make such extremely precise predictions, verified experimentally up to one part in a billion. Such ‘miracles’ of chance agreement can clearly be ruled out as themselves too improbable to be true. This apparently plausible argument is examined carefully and shown to consist in a number of separate steps, all of which are fallacious.

Keywords: chance; grue; Harvard Medical School Test; miracles; significance tests

Chapter.  10894 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Science

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