I note there are some questions similar to mine, e.g. the question "What is the underdetermination of theories by evidence, and how does it square with scientific realism?" But I believe they are also different in some ways so I present my question anyway.
Realism is a zoo with many strange animals.
The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (SEP) gives - with caveats - the definition of Scientific Realism (under the same heading): “Metaphysically, realism is committed to the mind-independent existence of the world investigated by the sciences” A more compact definition would be to say that “the real world exists independent of our consciousness” leaving out whether the world is investigated or not.
I take this as an axiom and consider some of its consequences. The first consequence is that man-made descriptions, theories and models are related to our consciousness and can therefore not be part of the objective world. Although we could imagine another objective entity accompanying the objective reality, made up by an objective true theory and model of the objective world, but we don’t have access to such thing now, so we must admit that there is no objective -and absolute - descriptions of reality in either words or formulas.
It may seem a reasonable position but it has surprising consequences in a number of fields.
1 Regarding: Philosophical view of absolute truth
An immediate, and trivial, consequence is the Duhem-Quine thesis The basic problem is that individual theoretical claims are unable to be confirmed or falsified on their own, in isolation from surrounding hypotheses. (Philpapers.org on “Quine-Duhem Thesis”)
The challenge was extended by Quine to apply to all knowledge claims. (“.…W. V. O. Quine suggested that such challenges applied not only to the confirmation of all types of scientific theories, but to all knowledge claims/ From SEP on “Underdetermination of Scientific Theory”.) According to SEP this is “His /Quine's/ incorporation and further development of these problems as part of a general account of human knowledge was one of the most significant developments of 20th Century” (SEP "Underdeterminism of scientific theory")
2 Regarding: Model-making in science
We can now (epistemologically) answer a question from an AAAS seminar about whether the flapping of a bird or butterfly’s wings in Argentina could exclusively cause a tornado in Texas some time later which wouldn’t have occurred without the particular wing-flapping. The answer is: “It depends on the model!” The search for absolute truth hidden in the question is futile.
Regarding Model-making in science 2.1: Epistemology of quantum physics - an area of great confusion.
I assume that Schrödinger’s cat experiment is well known. The experiment has been called into question regarding the rules of so-called thought experiments but we allow it for the purpose here.
The situation is that the cat is either dead or alive, it is only 50 % dead and alive to the physicist who confuses theory with reality!
(There is a challenge here. It does not refer to the dismissal of the waveform as non-real. Instead it has to do with the concepts “life”, and “death” and “cats” which are also models - descriptions - of reality and therefore cannot represent absolute truth. The solution is to arrange real-life models in a hierarchy similar to a Russian Babushka, with some layers more important than others. Indeed, Scrödinger himself contrasted the immediate - and therefore in a sense closer to reality - ideas of the "cat", and its potential "life" or "death", to his own more sophisticated equation.)
My question is whether this definition - and the axiom I infer about absolute truth - and its consequences is accepted by followers of the same philosophical direction (scientific realism as defined above).