A logical proof of a creator?

  • #26
chiro
Science Advisor
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Well, when humans can even begin to understand God, I'm all ears.

Absolutely, we can barely understand ourselves let alone an entity like God.
 
  • #27
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Georg. I think your missing the point completely. There is no need to invoke mystics because it doesn't solve anything.

Really? How come?


It just brings up the same questions applied to the mystics. No new understanding and better yet: it leads no where.


Aha, you make the assumption that you MUST understand the hypothetical creator. You like making assumptions, don't you?


To believe in that requires faith, to utilize science requires evidence.


Ultimate questions REQUIRE faith, always, anytime, 24/7, 365 days per year. You just don't realize that the models you've chosen also require faith.


I never once stated I understand everything in the universe.


But you did state that a creator is UNnecessary. This means that you THINK you understand the universe and how everything works. This is simply hilarious and couldn't be further from the truth. A creator/designer is by default compatible with absolutely all the evidence that there might ever be. Whatever evidence you can bring up, there is no way to disprove that it wasn't the creator's will that things had to be exactly that particular way. You can believe that a creator is unnecessary, but those ultimate questions will always remain unanswerable and highly debateable. When it comes down to your beliefs vs someone else's, it becomes similar to the fights between religions.



I clearly understand enough to see that it's pointless to invoke mystics though. That's not based on faith, it's based on deduction.



No, you don't understand enough. This is ridiculous. Nobel prize winners never claim they know enough to disprove a creator, and you with you 113 times lesser knowledge claim this. Hmm...


EDIT: As well yeah, I did use circular logic. Why not? The question is completely useless, just like the answer.


ANd how do you know it's a useless question? You assumed so. You can assume anything, it's rather easy but also kind of pointless.


ERGO: To conclude by some logic that there is necessarily a creator and the universe necessairly had a cause and purpose is wrong.


While this may or may not be the case, it doesn't follow from anything you said above.



As well @ Georg. You seem to be applying the False dilema fallacy towards me. If I say it's not this or this isn't necessary it must necessarily mean I think option 'B' 100%. WRONG! Truth being: I don't know about the 'cause' of the universe, and that's why I don't invoke mystics about it without evidence.(know in the philosophical sense which means it is a true belief.)



Whenever you make statements that a creator is not required, you are making a bold assertion that reveals that you hold a high level of faith for the models you've chosen that you cannot falsify.


Invoking mystics or a creator means, necessarily, that you think you KNOW about the causation/'birth' of the universes existence as a whole.


I said it's one of the options. There may or may not be a creator, this is the default position for me, as i don't have faith of the religious or atheist kind.


Nothing I have stated concludes, as some are trying to portray it as, that I know about this.


Quite to the contrary, and this is rather obvious. Anytime you throw around statements that god is obsolete, means that you think you understand the universe. You are of course wrong, as are probably those of the religious camp.


Only that it is pointless to invoke mystics because it is not necessary.


God is not necessary, because God is not necessary. The Bible is right, because the Bible says so.


Did I get my point accross well enough through reptition or do I need a follow-up?



No. You are repeating the same old mantra - god is not neceassry because it's not necessary and given that the thread will be locked, i am not too enthusiastic about writing a lengthier response.
 
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  • #28
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What do you actually mean by "understandable"?

A scientist's position since the Enlightenment would be that we can model the world even if we cannot "know" the world. A model is a representation of some framework of causality - a logical, and normally mechanical, representation. It would seem to be an "understanding", and one that excludes any mysticism (as maths makes models crisp, not vague).


Aren't the laws of nature that we are discovering drawing us closer to understanding the universe? This is a philosophical question and my position, as with most scientists, is that they slowly are. But this could be an illusion or misunderstanding and the whole model that we are scientifically building could collapse at any time. The foundations of science are nowhere near rock-solid. The fundamental knowledge that every physicist is after is simply not there yet.
 
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  • #29
apeiron
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Aren't the laws of nature that we are discovering drawing us closer to understanding the universe? This is a philosophical question and my position, as with most scientists, is that they slowly are.

Which I agree with. But that does not seem to fit with you saying there is no reason things should be understandable. If things ARE understandable, as you say, then why should we think it us UN-reasonable that this is so. It may be possible that reality MIGHT have not been understandable. But in practice, that seems a moot point on the evidence.

Whenever you make statements that a creator is not required, you are making a bold assertion that reveals that you hold a high level of faith for the models you've chosen that you cannot falsify.

But surely, just as there can be logical attempts to prove that creators must exist (if there are creations), so there can be logical attempts to prove that they cannot exist.

A standard rebuff is the infinite regress argument. If we need a creator for a creation, then who created the creator? Given the infinite regress, it is more parsimonious just to say creation exists (because that is what you are going have to say about a god - he just exists - so positing a god buys nothing of explanatory interest).

And in fact, it is a "faith" in regular models of causality that make people feel so desperate to find the local efficient cause of reality - the prime mover who could be its first cause. A bolder move is to say, well, "it just exists". But that is also then "illogical" as logic demands the cause that produces the effect.

So logic says there must be a first cause, and also that there cannot be one. Which is when people really ought to be wondering whether they are employing the best logic available.
 
  • #30
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Which I agree with. But that does not seem to fit with you saying there is no reason things should be understandable. If things ARE understandable, as you say, then why should we think it us UN-reasonable that this is so.


I don't follow you. Are you saying that it's reasonable that if the universe is understandble, we must be slowly building an understanding of it? If so, how does that answer the question why the universe is understandable in the first place?

zomgwtf insisted that our explanations of the universe should not be mystical, yet neither he nor anyone else could show the reason why the universe must not be mystical and incomprehensible. In short, I zomgwt, or I apeiron think the universe should not be regarded as mystical but as totally comprehensible because:

1...............
2...............
3...............



It may be possible that reality MIGHT have not been understandable. But in practice, that seems a moot point on the evidence.


OK, i'll concede that reality in the not so near future might be totally comprehensible and no more mystical. How does that prove that there is no creator? I'd say it tips the scales in favor of the idea of a creator, than vice versa. What's the other option? That reality is in our heads only and hence the totality of the explanatory power of the human mind?



But surely, just as there can be logical attempts to prove that creators must exist (if there are creations), so there can be logical attempts to prove that they cannot exist.



I agree. But there is a boundary between philosophy and religion. Anytime your assumptions start looking like pure 'facts' to you, your doctrine is leaving philosophy-land for good.



A standard rebuff is the infinite regress argument. If we need a creator for a creation, then who created the creator? Given the infinite regress, it is more parsimonious just to say creation exists (because that is what you are going have to say about a god - he just exists - so positing a god buys nothing of explanatory interest).



I think it's silly to assume that we can understand a hypothetical creator god. I am not certain that it's not silly to assume that we can understand our reality, let alone god. We have a long way to go before we can look that high.



And in fact, it is a "faith" in regular models of causality that make people feel so desperate to find the local efficient cause of reality - the prime mover who could be its first cause. A bolder move is to say, well, "it just exists". But that is also then "illogical" as logic demands the cause that produces the effect.

So logic says there must be a first cause, and also that there cannot be one. Which is when people really ought to be wondering whether they are employing the best logic available.


I am also questioning both our logic or what we think is logical in the universe. Or maybe it's that there seems to be something missing - some driving principle for the organization found in our universe - from the physical constants and subsequent formation of matter to the arrival of emergent conscious, self-aware life in a comprehensible and mathematically consistent environment(if this is even how things really took place)
 
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  • #31
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However, we know that the universe had a beginning. God is assumed to be eternal - to exist outside of time.

This idea that everything came from nothing does seem rather silly. That's why I was interested in the ideas of a collision of branes, or a collapse of a hypersurface, to explain the BB. This would presumably mean that the universe or multiverse is eternal, and the problem goes away.

I agree. The issue however then becomes if eternal and there were no initial conditions from the Big Bang, then how do the properties and configurations of the Universe look the way they do today? In other words, this model allows for no logical explanation for why objects and relationships we see today are the way they are. At least with initial conditions we can make more sense of the structures we identify today. But, then again - if there were initial conditions and the BB was the start of all that we see today, and this was in fact the first cause, then what caused the BB? Some will say: "nothing caused the BB, as there was no time or space prior to the BB, there were no prior states". But, logically it seems we must always regress back to an earlier state in order to explain the current state we observe. There is no logical explanation any way that you look at it. At least none identified today.
 
  • #32
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Which I agree with. But that does not seem to fit with you saying there is no reason things should be understandable. If things ARE understandable, as you say, then why should we think it us UN-reasonable that this is so. It may be possible that reality MIGHT have not been understandable. But in practice, that seems a moot point on the evidence.



But surely, just as there can be logical attempts to prove that creators must exist (if there are creations), so there can be logical attempts to prove that they cannot exist.

A standard rebuff is the infinite regress argument. If we need a creator for a creation, then who created the creator? Given the infinite regress, it is more parsimonious just to say creation exists (because that is what you are going have to say about a god - he just exists - so positing a god buys nothing of explanatory interest).

And in fact, it is a "faith" in regular models of causality that make people feel so desperate to find the local efficient cause of reality - the prime mover who could be its first cause. A bolder move is to say, well, "it just exists". But that is also then "illogical" as logic demands the cause that produces the effect.

So logic says there must be a first cause, and also that there cannot be one. Which is when people really ought to be wondering whether they are employing the best logic available.


Good insight
 
  • #33
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There you go with the False dilema again. Just because we should not invoke mystics does NOT mean that the universe is comprehensible.

You look at it as belief in:
God = incomprehensible universe
No God = comprehensible universe.

Not true as I've stated many times. You're asserting my beliefs in how we can understand the universe based off the fact that I say it is not necessary to invoke something that we can not understand further. I never said that I KNOW no god exists, only that it is a pointless proposition and belief to hold because it leads no where at this current point in time. That is just the 'creator' type God from the OP. If the God has stories that if you don't follow his will he'll put you on a spike and repeatedly burn you or shove pineapples up your *** for an eternity then you might have a point in your belief in that God. This isn't the case in this thread however.

So the question is specificly about the cause of the universe.
God caused the universe and God needs no cause.
This is based on HUGE assumptions and false knowledge. (which isn't true knowledge hence it leads no where)

OR what I'm saying:
The universe exists and the cause (God) can not be fully understood so there's no point in making leaps of faith to attempt to conclude a creator must exist.
This has the minor assumption that we can not understand the cause of the universe WHY should we assume that? Because we live inside the universe so can not be 100% certain of anything that might occur or had occured outside of our universe. Even if we end up making 'test tube' universes it wouldn't show conclusively that our universe was made in a similar way.

I show this point by changing around what Ivan had stated to show that the universe can be given all the defintions of a 'first cause' creator so why should we jump to mystics? To say that we should not invoke mystics isn't a firm stance on whether or not God does in fact exist as you like to think Georg.
 
  • #34
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I mostly agree with your latest statement zomgwtf, it seems to be a toned down version that's much harder to shoot down.

Reality is still pretty much incomrehensible and mystical, so anytime you or I or anyone else makes a definite statement, it's simply crying out loud - 'take me down, take me down, it's so easy'.

Reality could be a fluke or just as easily be divinely inspired(that should, in principle and philosophically speaking, include all possible creation events - advanced alien races, simlulations, brains in vats, bolzmann brains and the such).
 
  • #35
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ANd how do you know it's a useless question? You assumed so. You can assume anything, it's rather easy but also kind of pointless.

It's useless because the definitive answer will always involve circular logic. Which was what I was showing. Here we have
'The universe exists necessarily because it exists' It's not really a perfect example of circular logic but hey... you wanna call me out here:

'God exists because the universe exists and god created the universe' That's a PERFECT example of circular reasoning is it not??? It's what's necessary to make assumptions about the universe. I'm of the position that no assumptions should be made as such because they don't add anything other than same set of questions on to the new concept (God in this case).
 
  • #36
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It's useless because the definitive answer will always involve circular logic. Which was what I was showing. Here we have
'The universe exists necessarily because it exists' It's not really a perfect example of circular logic but hey... you wanna call me out here:

'God exists because the universe exists and god created the universe' That's a PERFECT example of circular reasoning is it not??? It's what's necessary to make assumptions about the universe. I'm of the position that no assumptions should be made as such because they don't add anything other than same set of questions on to the new concept (God in this case).



I don't think you are justified in making the assumption that our reasoning is something extremely special that can even comprehend god. Our human logic is rooted in causality, so we will always look for first causes. If you don't make the assumption that your human reasoning is something exteremely special, you simply conclude - God/Nature has not given us reasoning skills to comprehend absolutely everything about the reality we are in. If, on the other hand, you assume you have such skills, you have to put forward evidence why you think you should understand god/nature and ALL of its ultimate questions. I am very very skeptical of such claims as i think the human mind is not limitless. I do hope however that time proves me wrong on this.
 
  • #37
Evo
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George, why do you think the universe is mystical? What is mystical about it? Isn't it only mystical to those that don't understand, or choose not to believe the science involved? It's not mystical to me. The fact that we don't have all of the answers does not make it "mystical".
 
  • #38
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George, why do you think the universe is mystical? What is mystical about it? Isn't it only mystical to those that don't understand, or choose not to believe the science involved? It's not mystical to me. The fact that we don't have all of the answers does not make it "mystical".



The fact that we have a dozen very different, competing models of what space, matter and time are, is a pretty good reason to state that we don't know what these concepts truly are. If Nobel prize winners don't know, why do you suppose science does?

Is reality a collection of mathematical fields? Or is it pure maths? Or is it something totally incomprehensible? Who's to say? Einstein? Hawking? Weinberg? Kaku? Witten?

I've never seen them claim they knew what reality is.
 
  • #39
Evo
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The fact that we have a dozen very different, competing models of what space, matter and time are, is a pretty good reason to state that we don't know what these concepts truly are. If Nobel prize winners don't know, why do you suppose science does?

Is reality a collection of mathematical fields? Or is it pure maths? Or is it something totally incomprehensible? Who's to say? Einstein? Hawking? Weinberg? Kaku? Witten?

I've never seen them claim they knew what reality is.
This has nothing to do with my post. I asked you to explain why you think the universe is "mystical".

Definition of mystical

oxford Dictionary

mystical

• adjective 1 relating to mystics or mysticism. 2 having a spiritual significance that transcends human understanding. 3 inspiring a sense of spiritual mystery, awe, and fascination.
 
  • #40
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This has nothing to do with my post. I asked you to explain why you think the universe is "mystical".


If you don't understand how reality(the universe) works or what it is, how is it(the universe) NOT mystical? How is that even possible? The only way for you to know how reality works is if you make assumptions. This isn't science, as you know quite well. It's philosophy, and your personal philosophy is just as good as the next by default.
 
  • #41
Evo
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If you don't understand how reality(the universe) works or what it is, how is it(the universe) NOT mystical? How is that even possible? The only way for you to know how reality works is if you make assumptions. This isn't science, as you know quite well. It's philosophy, and your personal philosophy is just as good as the next by default.
So, anything you don't know about is mystical to you? What is your definition of mystical, and where did you get the definition?

I posted my definition above. Part of the rules for posting here is to clearly define terms so that everyone has the same understanding. Since PF is a science forum, our guidelines for Philosophy may be different from what you are used to doing on other forums.
 
  • #42
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This has nothing to do with my post. I asked you to explain why you think the universe is "mystical".

Definition of mystical

oxford Dictionary

mystical

• adjective 1 relating to mystics or mysticism. 2 having a spiritual significance that transcends human understanding. 3 inspiring a sense of spiritual mystery, awe, and fascination.



It's in the sense of 'enigmatic', 'mysterious'. According to the first dictionary i could find:


"adjective
1.mystic; occult.
2.of or pertaining to mystics or mysticism: mystical writings.
3.spiritually symbolic.
4.Rare. obscure in meaning; mysterious.

—Synonyms
1. See mysterious."



http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/mystical







So, it's got to be number 4, as well as its synonym "mysterious"



The choice of that word was not mine but i am fine with it, so maybe you should state the forum rules to the first member that used it on the previous page "zomgwtf". I was merely quoting his words 1:1.
 
  • #43
Evo
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So, it's got to be number 4, as well as its synonym "mysterious"
Ok, well that makes more sense to me.

The choice of that word was not mine but i am fine with it, so maybe you should state the forum rules to the first member that used it on the previous page "zomgwtf". I was merely quoting his words 1:1.
Then I will have to devise a cruel and unusual punishment for him.

I find that when disagreements start, it is often because of different definitions of key words.
 
  • #44
apeiron
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I don't follow you. Are you saying that it's reasonable that if the universe is understandble, we must be slowly building an understanding of it? If so, how does that answer the question why the universe is understandable in the first place?

OK, you have two separate questions.

1) Is the universe understandable? Yes, we seem to agree - even if complete understanding or direct understanding are also in principle NOT likely.

2) Why is the universe understandable (given that prima facie it is)? Well this might be that it behave "logically" and so it is possible to model it with logic-based models. Or to put it more naturalistically, the universe behaves regularly.

Now then, why is this? Why is it regular?

My answer of course is the systems approach. Reality is a self-organised system which has developed into being. Out of a foam of pure possibility - the ill-regularity of vagueness - has emerged an organising set of global constraints (physical law, platonic form) and a set of constructing materials (the fields, the particles, the local substances.

This is a logic-based view of why systems are regular rather than irregular. And hence understandable.

Now a god-based approach would appear to say reality is regular because god chose it to be so. But then we are justified to ask why is god regular? Which starts the infinite regress.

Or we could be instead mystical and say reality just is regular (or god made it so, and he in turn "just is" regular, with no attempt at further justification). The mystical is where we abandon the constraints of logic and naturalness.

As you say, once you start doing this, it is "religion" and not really worthy of further reasoned discussion.

I think it's silly to assume that we can understand a hypothetical creator god.

Our understanding depends on there being regularity we can then model logically, agreed?

A creator god is already an illogical option due to the infinite regress argument (I'm not seeing anyone focusing on finding a reason why god-ness is exempt from this constraint in this thread so far).

So it is in fact illogical and unreasonable to expect that we could "understand" - logically model - this notion of a creator.

The ontological argument says that creations must have creators. The infinite regress argument says even creators must be created.

The systems approach says both these understandings seem to have necessary truth and supplies the answer that systems are self-creating.
 
  • #45
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My answer of course is the systems approach. Reality is a self-organised system which has developed into being.


Out of a foam of pure possibility - the ill-regularity of vagueness - has emerged an organising set of global constraints (physical law, platonic form) and a set of constructing materials (the fields, the particles, the local substances.

This is a logic-based view of why systems are regular rather than irregular. And hence understandable.


If this is possible, then anything is possible. This is an almost all-powerful explanation that could potentially explain anything but violates the foundations of our knowledge - the assumptions of realism, causality, determinism, etc.





Now a god-based approach would appear to say reality is regular because god chose it to be so. But then we are justified to ask why is god regular? Which starts the infinite regress.

Or we could be instead mystical and say reality just is regular (or god made it so, and he in turn "just is" regular, with no attempt at further justification). The mystical is where we abandon the constraints of logic and naturalness.


Logic falls apart one way or another, so you shouldn't worry about that too much. There is no proposed model of existence and coming into existence that is logical and i fear there will never be.





Our understanding depends on there being regularity we can then model logically, agreed?


Sure, but would you push those models to reveal truths? Or are they simply working models that let us make progress? This is a pretty significant point. As soon as you try to push our "regularities" and the models we build on them, you are assuming that those models could reach truths. Are you justified to make that assumption? I am not too sure.



A creator god is already an illogical option due to the infinite regress argument (I'm not seeing anyone focusing on finding a reason why god-ness is exempt from this constraint in this thread so far).

So it is in fact illogical and unreasonable to expect that we could "understand" - logically model - this notion of a creator.

The ontological argument says that creations must have creators. The infinite regress argument says even creators must be created.


What if the creator emerged in exactly the same fashion as the one you laid out a paragraph ago out of pure potentiallity? That mode of coming into existence - vagueness-crispness can bring about anything, right? Who's to say it didn't bear another civilization before ours?
Most of the possible models of the universe are rejected on aestetic grounds, i.e. they do not conform to the tastes of those who propose them and could be detrimental to society's goals(i.e. look at muslim societies with the Sharia law).



The systems approach says both these understandings seem to have necessary truth and supplies the answer that systems are self-creating.


Where would you draw the line as to what self-creating systems are possible to arise? If those systems are created in a guiding framework of physical laws, aren't you re-inventing the infinite regress of infinite sets of laws?
 
  • #46
apeiron
Gold Member
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If this is possible, then anything is possible. This is an almost all-powerful explanation that could potentially explain anything but violates the foundations of our knowledge - the assumptions of realism, causality, determinism, etc.

It is certainly a powerful approach :cool: but in what way does it violate the foundations of our knowledge - especially as the systems approach is the oldest philosophical approach (cf: Anaximander, I Ching, pratitya-samutpada)? Notions such as determinism, for example, derived from the more ancient dichotomy of chance and necessity.

So you will have to spell out how it violates these things. And why if we can strongly assume one thing, why we can't also assume its opposite (thesis and anti-thesis, as Hegel says, becoming again finally a synthesis).

Logic falls apart one way or another, so you shouldn't worry about that too much. There is no proposed model of existence and coming into existence that is logical and i fear there will never be.

But how much have you studied Peirce, Anaximander, systems science, self-organisation? I'm hearing you say it cannot be done, but have yet to see any specific critique of these actual ideas of how it can be done.


Sure, but would you push those models to reveal truths? Or are they simply working models that let us make progress? This is a pretty significant point. As soon as you try to push our "regularities" and the models we build on them, you are assuming that those models could reach truths. Are you justified to make that assumption? I am not too sure.

They are always just working models, and also I would always be pushing them, so as to see if further progress can be made.

The justification here is that what has worked in the past (making an effort) justifies a continued effort.

And even in my own lifetime I have witnessed tremendous progress. So where does the pessimism come from?

Where would you draw the line as to what self-creating systems are possible to arise? If those systems are created in a guiding framework of physical laws, aren't you re-inventing the infinite regress of infinite sets of laws?

No, really it is about re-inventing the notion of law. Laws do not exist before things become organised, they emerge as part of the process of self-organisation. They exist in the future of systems as attractors, not in the past as initial conditions.

The systems approach also does draw clear lines as to what can arise. The necessary mutuality or synergy of global constraints and local constructions is the central principle that limits what can in fact develop.

If the two scales of emergent regularity are not mutually reinforcing, then they are part of the vast class of "worlds" that are illogical and cannot exist in principle.
 
  • #47
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They are always just working models, and also I would always be pushing them, so as to see if further progress can be made.

The justification here is that what has worked in the past (making an effort) justifies a continued effort.

And even in my own lifetime I have witnessed tremendous progress. So where does the pessimism come from?


On a fundamental level as this discussion is going, absolutely everything is an assumption in this universe. I don't mean to invoke unnecessary drama, but the ultimate truths you are after will always be clouded in assumptions. We are limited to perceiving reality indirectly, so take those fundamental "truths" for what they really are.


No, really it is about re-inventing the notion of law. Laws do not exist before things become organised, they emerge as part of the process of self-organisation.


How could laws emerge from something that is not yet organized, but will organize itself(?) and then laws will emerge? How would "things" become organized without physical laws? And how is this considered a logical beginning? It violates both determinsm, causality and realism.


They exist in the future of systems as attractors, not in the past as initial conditions.


So you say laws exist in the future of things. So there is cauation at play(pre-determination that laws must emerge), but laws themselves are not bound to causality(i.e. they are not caused)? It doesn't make sense to me or i am missing something truly dramatic.


The systems approach also does draw clear lines as to what can arise. The necessary mutuality or synergy of global constraints and local constructions is the central principle that limits what can in fact develop.


Who/what sets the global constraints? They emerge too? Is there a concise summery of the main ideas of systems science, so that i can see if want to devote time to it?


If the two scales of emergent regularity are not mutually reinforcing, then they are part of the vast class of "worlds" that are illogical and cannot exist in principle.


Strong emergence is simply a label for something that we do not yet understand. I don't think you are justified in building a model of the universe around something that's not really clear. It could still be the case, but it doesn't sound right, as strong emergence is still one of the least understood aspects of reality.
 
  • #48
apeiron
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On a fundamental level as this discussion is going, absolutely everything is an assumption in this universe. I don't mean to invoke unnecessary drama, but the ultimate truths you are after will always be clouded in assumptions. We are limited to perceiving reality indirectly, so take those fundamental "truths" for what they really are.

Yes of course it is all a great pile of assumptions. How may times must this be agreed?

But the argument is that only certain assumptions about the nature of reality will prove to be self-consistent and thus logically regular over time. So metaphysics is about finding the least number of assumptions to generate a realistic model of the reality we experience.

The invariances of nature as Nozick put it.

There need be nothing cloudy about the principles on which we chose our assumptions (and reject others).

A journey not yet completed is not the same as a journey that cannot even be started - which is what you keep falsely attempting to argue.

How could laws emerge from something that is not yet organized, but will organize itself(?) and then laws will emerge? How would "things" become organized without physical laws? And how is this considered a logical beginning? It violates both determinsm, causality and realism.

Because even the first vague stirrings of organisation, of a fruitful direction, of an emergence of a global regularity or law, becomes self-reinforcing.

This is the way phase transitions work. Once the dipoles of a cooling iron bar begin to line up in some global orientation, then swiftly all dipoles must line up according to this orientation.

Strong emergence is simply a label for something that we do not yet understand. I don't think you are justified in building a model of the universe around something that's not really clear. It could still be the case, but it doesn't sound right, as strong emergence is still one of the least understood aspects of reality

Who is this "we" that does not understand? I have spent many years with those active in systems science who do understand these basic ideas. Agreed a physics forum almost by definition is the least likely place to find any systems thinkers :tongue:. You have to hang out with neuroscientists, neural networkers, theoretical biologists and ecologists.
 
  • #49
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Just to make it absolutely clear my definition of mystics fell more in line with Evo's posted definition.
 
  • #50
Yes of course it is all a great pile of assumptions. How may times must this be agreed?

But the argument is that only certain assumptions about the nature of reality will prove to be self-consistent and thus logically regular over time. So metaphysics is about finding the least number of assumptions to generate a realistic model of the reality we experience.

The invariances of nature as Nozick put it.

There need be nothing cloudy about the principles on which we chose our assumptions (and reject others).

A journey not yet completed is not the same as a journey that cannot even be started - which is what you keep falsely attempting to argue.



Because even the first vague stirrings of organisation, of a fruitful direction, of an emergence of a global regularity or law, becomes self-reinforcing.

This is the way phase transitions work. Once the dipoles of a cooling iron bar begin to line up in some global orientation, then swiftly all dipoles must line up according to this orientation.



Who is this "we" that does not understand? I have spent many years with those active in systems science who do understand these basic ideas. Agreed a physics forum almost by definition is the least likely place to find any systems thinkers :tongue:. You have to hang out with neuroscientists, neural networkers, theoretical biologists and ecologists.

The idea of an endless search for knowledge, always getting closer and believing that the whole is ultimately understandable (if not by people) sounds pretty good to me. That's what attracted me to medicine instead of one of the pure sciences. I like your view apeiron, that vastness or complexity aside, there is a starting point and a place to aim for, not to mention that the process itself is deeply rewarding on a personal and societal level.
 

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