Friday, November 30, 2012

Friedrich Engels on Science and Philosophy

"Dialectics divested of mysticism becomes an absolute necessity for natural science, which has forsaken the field where rigid categories sufficed, which represent as it were the lower mathematics of logic, its everyday weapons. Philosophy takes its revenge posthumously on natural science for the latter having deserted it..." - Engels
"If that is said by a mystical natural scientist, who means nothing by it, it is calmly allowed to pass, but if a philosopher says the same thing, and one who means something by it, and indeed au fond something correct, although in inverted form, then it is mysticism and a terrible crime." - Engels
"Natural scientists believe that they free themselves from philosophy by ignoring it or abusing it. They cannot, however, make any headway without thought, and for thought they need thought determinations. But they take these categories unreflectingly from the common consciousness of so-called educated persons..." - Engels
"Natural scientists may adopt whatever attitude they please, they are still under the domination of philosophy. It is only a question whether they want to be dominated by a bad, fashionable philosophy or by a form of theoretical thought which rests on acquaintance with the history of thought and its achievements." - Engels