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A Second Refutation of Ockham’s Razor

A Tract Book

By Anthony J. Fejfar

© Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar

Previously, I argued that Ockham’s Razor is invalid because in order for a

concept to be valid, it must at least allow for its’ own existence. Ockham’s Razor

does not allow for its’ own existence because it excludes itself as an unnecessary

metaphysical assumption. In this Tract Book, I explore an alternate refutation of

Ockham’s Razor.

In essence, Ockham’s Razor provides that a simple explanation of some

phenomenon is to be preferred over a more complex explanation. So, for example,

if it is possible to argue for or prove or even theorize the origin of the Universe in

purely physicalist terms, excluding any discussion of God or metaphysics, then,

such a “simple” physicalist explanation is to be preferred.

I would like to propose an alternative approach, however. Let us call this

Fejfar’s Rubberband. Fejfar’s Rubberband argues that a more complex

explanation is to be preferred over a simple one. The argument is that intellectual

people generally prefer more complex explanations of phenomenon over those

which or simple at best, simpliste, at worst. Fejfar’s Rubberband would prefer an

explanation of the origin of the Universe which involves God, or metaphysics, over

a simple physicalist explanation.

Now, let us assume the role of a judge who must determine which approach is

more valid, Ockham’s Razor or Fejfar’s Rubberband. Looking at the arguments

from a more critical point of view, it is clear that there is no rational basis for

preferring Ockham’s Razor to Fejfar’s Rubberband. The choice of selecting a

more simple explanation over a more complex explanation is purely subjective.

There is no value neutral argument which favors Ockham’s Razor over Fejfar’s

Rubberband. Ockham’s Razor is revealed not as critical science, but as a

subjectivist, purely arbitrary, irrational, assumption.