Falsification Principle

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  • Created by: SRWallis
  • Created on: 02-01-14 16:11
  • Flew, Hare and Mitchell 
  • A statement that can be falsified is meaningful
  • A statement that can be tested to check whether it is true or false is meaningful
  • A statement that cannot be tested or falsified (i.e. God loves me) is meaningless
  • Flew referred to a parable from John Wisdom's paper 'Gods'. Two explorers come across a clearing in a jungle, and there are both flowers and weeds. One explorer is convinced that there must be a gargener who comes to the clearing and looks after it, but the other explorer disagrees. The two decide to settle their argument by lying in wait for the gardener, but he never appears. The one who believes in the existence of the gargener suggests he must be invisibl, so they set up traps, but still no gardener is found. The Beleiver continues to qualify his assertion that there is a gardener, by saying that he is invisible, silent, intangible and so on, until the sceptical explorer


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