from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. The agreement of two or more inductions drawn from different sets of data; concurrence.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. the concurrence of multiple inductions drawn from different data sets
- n. Agreement, co-operation or sharing of methods between or convergence or overlap of academic disciplines
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. Act of concurring; coincidence; concurrence.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A coming together; coincidence; concurrence.
As philosopher William Whewell, who coined the term consilience, noted in the nineteenth century, “When an Induction, obtained from one class of facts, coincides with an Induction, obtained from another different class,” we can be very confident it is correct.
The success of the natural sciences has been fueled by "consilience," he says.
Timmer argues that a "consilience" of different lines of evidence strongly favors the catechismal (monophyletic) tale, and faults
Here Gordon disagrees - and we have a case study in the fragility of the "consilience" of data lauded by Timmer.
Wilson's quest for "consilience" shows how the tradition of natural law reasoning can be extended and deepened through a modern science of human nature.
One question we might need to ask about Wilson's 'consilience' thesis is what is its relation to the idea of a 'universal' scientific theory.
My understanding of consilience is not as a program for extending the scientific method to every domain of knowledge.
If we take the general theory advocates to be claiming that there will be a single, unified, scientific theory that explains all the subject matter of the sciences, and if Wilson's consilience notion is a form of that claim, then Wilson is simply assuming that the sciences will be united in their explanation of the objects they study.
"Rather than supporting randomness, a consilience of relatively recent results from various branches of physical science – physics, astronomy, chemistry, geology, molecular biology – actually points insistently toward purposeful design in the universe."
The last chapter includes sections on consilience of results from various branches of science, Behe's reference to fine-tuning in laws, properties details and events, a reflection upon design and OOL, how deep design goes into the planning of life, … and, finally, the implication of the design inference, re: The Truman Show (ie: are we just puppets?).