Everything came from Nothing

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  • #71
heusdens
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Originally posted by Eyesee
Ok, you're right. Nothing is hard to describe. But we do agree on the fact that we have to assume something irrational for existence to exist. By irrational I mean that it doesn't follow the causal principle.

I don't think one has to assume something "irrational" to explain existence. It can't be explained using causal relations, cause they are only applicable within existence, and not for existence itself.
(since existence includes all that exists, there is not anything out of existence, so no "outside" cause can be proposed to explain existence itself).

The question about existence is the issue of why there exist something rather then nothing. Different philosophers have tried to deal with this issue in different ways (mainly in the field of ontology) and came up with different answers.
According to some philosophers the question is meaningless. For instance any explenation of "why is it the case that A?" needs an answer in the form of "because B is the case". But in this case, such an explenation cannot be given, since we can not assume the existence of anything to give grounds for such an explenation.

The question of why there is existence is a peculiar question, and one which is unanswerable. Existence just is, it has no cause or reason.
 
  • #72
heusdens
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Originally posted by Mentat
LW Sleeth, It isn't mumbo jumbo, it's Quantum Uncertainty. You see, nothing is ever perfectly definable, so from a state of absolutely no existence could pop up an entire universe. All that this "0" argument proves is that the very "energy" didn't have to come from energy, but could have just come about.

Anyway, it's not my idea, it just seemed pertinent to the discussion.

The quantum vacuum state is imo not a candidate for a real state of nothingness. A state of nothingness is a state outside time, space and material existence, so not even quantum effects are existence in such a state.
Quantum mechanics just explains us that there isn't and can't be such a state of true nothingness.

The quantum mechanical state of a vacuum is not inexistence, it is existence in a material way, in a spatiotemporal way. It is existence at all times and all places in an ever changing way.
 
  • #73
heusdens
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Originally posted by Eyesee
Everything came from nothing because it is the only thing
that doesn't come from anything.

A statement as "everything came from nothing" seems to implie that it is the application of causal laws. However this application is outside of it's context, cause causal effects are spatiotemporal bound to material existence. Every material form or shape is caused by another material form or shape, but there isn't a material shape or form that is not caused by any material shape or form, or in other words: material existence doesn't "pop out of nothing".

If we negate the statement (i.e. everything came not from nothing) we see that the opposite is true, namely that every existing state of the material world is the effect of an previous state of the material world, which means that material existence is without begin or end.
It's the only sensible statement we can make about material existence.
 
  • #74
wuliheron
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The question of why there is existence is a peculiar question, and one which is unanswerable. Existence just is, it has no cause or reason.

Silly rabbit, trix are for kids.

Saying existence just IS, is just so much rhetorical nonsense. It is neither an explanation nor even a meaningful discription. Might as well just say it is magical at that rate or that dill pickles explain everything.

If existence is ineffable, unspeakable, then why do you keep trying? Why do you keep insisting infinity explains existence and then contradicting yourself by admitting infinity cannot be proven?

If we negate the statement (i.e. everything came not from nothing) we see that the opposite is true, namely that every existing state of the material world is the effect of an previous state of the material world, which means that material existence is without begin or end.
It's the only sensible statement we can make about material existence.

More nonsense disguised as meaningful statements. Sorry, but again this denies a century of evidence in Quantum Mechanics that everything may very well not be derived from some previous existent state. As any little kid knows, it's easy to get lost in infinity when you attempt to use it to explain anything.

Again, infinity is a paradoxical concept and to say it is sensible is a contradiction in terms, an oxymoron. For something to have no limits is, in itself, a limit. Every bit as misleading and self-referential as saying everything comes from nothing or from dill pickles. The only sensible thing we can say about existence is that it is demonstrably Paradoxical and possibly ineffable.

Of course, such elementary prehistoric reasoning doesn't stop people from infinitely attempting to explain existence using infinity. What a waste of time. Careful, don't spin in circles too fast or you'll throw up.
 
  • #75
Mentat
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Originally posted by Eyesee
Ok, you're right. Nothing is hard to describe. But we do agree on the fact that we have to assume something irrational for existence to exist. By irrational I mean that it doesn't follow the causal principle.

If by "irrational", you mean "without cause", then I agree.
 
  • #76
Originally posted by heusdens
I don't think one has to assume something "irrational" to explain existence. It can't be explained using causal relations, cause they are only applicable within existence, and not for existence itself.
(since existence includes all that exists, there is not anything out of existence, so no "outside" cause can be proposed to explain existence itself).

The question about existence is the issue of why there exist something rather then nothing. Different philosophers have tried to deal with this issue in different ways (mainly in the field of ontology) and came up with different answers.
According to some philosophers the question is meaningless. For instance any explenation of "why is it the case that A?" needs an answer in the form of "because B is the case". But in this case, such an explenation cannot be given, since we can not assume the existence of anything to give grounds for such an explenation.

The question of why there is existence is a peculiar question, and one which is unanswerable. Existence just is, it has no cause or reason.


"Existence just is, it has no cause or reason", in other words, it's magic?
 
  • #77
heusdens
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Originally posted by wuliheron
Silly rabbit, trix are for kids.

Saying existence just IS, is just so much rhetorical nonsense. It is neither an explanation nor even a meaningful discription. Might as well just say it is magical at that rate or that dill pickles explain everything.

If existence is ineffable, unspeakable, then why do you keep trying? Why do you keep insisting infinity explains existence and then contradicting yourself by admitting infinity cannot be proven?


Infinity can not be proven, since it cannot be measured. As such I agree on this, even on the fact that infinity is a contradictional concept.

However, my statement does make sense, in that it negates the supposed fact that material existence had a begin or final cause.

More nonsense disguised as meaningful statements. Sorry, but again this denies a century of evidence in Quantum Mechanics that everything may very well not be derived from some previous existent state. As any little kid knows, it's easy to get lost in infinity when you attempt to use it to explain anything.

I hold it that the existence of Quantum Mechanical effects itself is some form of material existence.

Again, infinity is a paradoxical concept and to say it is sensible is a contradiction in terms, an oxymoron. For something to have no limits is, in itself, a limit. Every bit as misleading and self-referential as saying everything comes from nothing or from dill pickles. The only sensible thing we can say about existence is that it is demonstrably Paradoxical and possibly ineffable.

I agree that material existence is full of contradictions, and all attempts to get rid of the contradictions will create more and deeper contradictions.

Of course, such elementary prehistoric reasoning doesn't stop people from infinitely attempting to explain existence using infinity. What a waste of time. Careful, don't spin in circles too fast or you'll throw up.

Here is a text that deals more substantially with these issues: http://csf.colorado.edu/psn/marx/Archive/1877-AD/p1.htm#c5" [Broken]
 
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  • #78
heusdens
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Originally posted by Eyesee
"Existence just is, it has no cause or reason", in other words, it's magic?


No, on the contrary. In my mind to state that material existence DID have a beginning, can be hold as a form of MAGIC that occurred (material existence suddenly popping out of nowhere). Since I state that such a begin did not occur, I think there was no magic involved.
 
  • #79
heusdens
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Originally posted by Eyesee
Everything came from nothing because it is the only thing
that doesn't come from anything.

Suppose we have a box with coines in them. I make the following statement about this box of coins. I say: "everything in the box weights less then 1 kilogram".
Now the fact shows up that the coin with the maximum weight is exactly 100 gram. However the weigt of the box of coins minus the weight of the box itself is 2 kilograms, so the coins together weight 2 kilograms.

Is my statement true or not?

You can argue it is true because there is no coin which weights more then 1 kilogram. Each coin weights less then 1 kilogram.
And you can argue that it is false because the weight of all the coins together is more then 1 kilogram.

This is an introduction to the slippery use of language, which is used in the statement "everything came from nothing".

The statement has double meaning, it can either mean that every individual thing came from nothing, i.e. the statement says that is is true for every individual thing that it came from nothing, i.e. it did not come from anything.
Or, alternatively, it can mean to say that everything in totallity came from nothing, i.e. it didn't come from anything.

The first statement is of course false, because of the law of causal effect. The second statement is however true.

This may seem contradictional, but you have to consider that the truthvalue of a statement about all members of a group is not necessarily the same as the truthvalue of a statement about the group itself.

For instance, we can say that every member of a football team has a parent. But the football team itself does not (necesarily) have a parent.

This type of argument, based on this confusion, is often used in defending the existence of a "creator", which in simple forms is the following line of argument: Everything has a cause. The world exists. So, it must have a cause, or been caused by something. Hence, a creator is needed (no creation without creator).
 
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  • #80
Mentat
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Originally posted by heusdens
Suppose we have a box with coines in them. I make the following statement about this box of coins. I say: "everything in the box weights less then 1 kilogram".
Now the fact shows up that the coin with the maximum weight is exactly 100 gram. However the weigt of the box of coins minus the weight of the box itself is 2 kilograms, so the coins together weight 2 kilograms.

Is my statement true or not?

You can argue it is true because there is no coin which weights more then 1 kilogram. Each coin weights less then 1 kilogram.
And you can argue that it is false because the weight of all the coins together is more then 1 kilogram.

This is an introduction to the slippery use of language, which is used in the statement "everything came from nothing".

The statement has double meaning, it can either mean that every individual thing came from nothing, i.e. the statement says that is is true for every individual thing that it came from nothing, i.e. it did not come from anything.
Or, alternatively, it can mean to say that everything in totallity came from nothing, i.e. it didn't come from anything.

The first statement is of course false, because of the law of causal effect. The second statement is however true.

This may seem contradictional, but you have to consider that the truthvalue of a statement about all members of a group is not necessarily the same as the truthvalue of a statement about the group itself.

For instance, we can say that every member of a football team has a parent. But the football team itself does not (necesarily) have a parent.

This type of argument, based on this confusion, is often used in defending the existence of a "creator", which in simple forms is the following line of argument: Everything has a cause. The world exists. So, it must have a cause, or been caused by something. Hence, a creator is needed (no creation without creator).

You make a good point, heusdens. Actually, it is even more of a "slippery language" condition than you mentioned - because you mentioned how the use of "everything" can have double meaning, but the use of the word "nothing" can also have double meaning.
 
  • #81
heusdens
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Originally posted by Mentat
You make a good point, heusdens. Actually, it is even more of a "slippery language" condition than you mentioned - because you mentioned how the use of "everything" can have double meaning, but the use of the word "nothing" can also have double meaning.

I think nothing just means "not any thing" and can't and shouldn't be used otherwise (at least not in the context in which it is supposed to be a thing).

But it's true that most confusion here on the forum on some topics arise out of flawed use of language expressions.
 
  • #82
Mentat
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Originally posted by heusdens
I think nothing just means "not any thing" and can't and shouldn't be used otherwise (at least not in the context in which it is supposed to be a thing).

But it's true that most confusion here on the forum on some topics arise out of flawed use of language expressions.

Exactly, and that's the point of my "exercise". Seriously, if you take any sentence, in which one makes a case for "nothing"'s being something, and use my "exercise" on it, it usually either ceases to have meaning, or becomes rational.
 
  • #83
heusdens
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Originally posted by Mentat
Exactly, and that's the point of my "exercise". Seriously, if you take any sentence, in which one makes a case for "nothing"'s being something, and use my "exercise" on it, it usually either ceases to have meaning, or becomes rational.

Well your intitial statement "everything came from nothing" is a typical example of flawed use of language expressions. It should have been stated like "The universe is uncaused". (we can for reasons of avoiding ambiguity not use the term "everything" for "universe")
 
  • #84


Originally posted by heusdens
Well your intitial statement "everything came from nothing" is a typical example of flawed use of language expressions. It should have been stated like "The universe is uncaused". (we can for reasons of avoiding ambiguity not use the term "everything" for "universe")


"Uncaused" has the same meaning as caused by "nothing", depending on the usage of the word nothing. I do agree however that "uncaused" is more clear. But "uncaused" for me is also synonymous with "magic".


I consider any phenomena, process, substance, etc, that does not obey the causal principle as "magical".
 
  • #85
heusdens
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Originally posted by Eyesee
"Uncaused" has the same meaning as caused by "nothing", depending on the usage of the word nothing. I do agree however that "uncaused" is more clear. But "uncaused" for me is also synonymous with "magic".


I consider any phenomena, process, substance, etc, that does not obey the causal principle as "magical".

Anything IN the universe obeys causal principles (at least to some extent, QM may tell a different story however) but not the universe as a whole.

It may sound 'magical', yet it really is not. In fact the opposite (the universe being 'caused' by some unknown entity) is magical.
It is contradictionary also, cause the fact that the universe is best seen as 'all there is' does BY DEFINITION not provide for the existence of something outside it.

The real meaning of the statement that the universe is uncaused is however is that it did not appear suddenly out of nothing, but had existed always, and will always exist.

The irronical thing however that - based on scientific knowledge - we know that this is not true, at least not in a trivial way. Everything in the universe is evolving, and will eventuale evade. This holds true for stars, planets, star systems, galaxies, etc. But even when we provide for a mechanism that recreates starts, planets and galaxies, for theoretical reasons (mainly because of the overall domination of gravity) the universe could not be stable for all of eternity.
Moreover the Big Bang theory provides us a global history of the universe, a model of an expanding universe, which in the past was much smaller and much more dense and much hotter.
It even puts a practical limit on how far we can see back, cause we are not able to directly observe things in the universe before the Big Bang happened. The cause of the Big Bang is still under investigation.
Note however that if we use the concential terms here, and say the universe was caused in the big bang, we run into deep trouble again, because the big bang cannot have a cause then. We can circumvade this problem only by assuming that some or other form of material existence in a spatiotemporal way, already existed before the big bang, and caused the big bang. It follows then that the universe we witness today, even including that what we assume is outside of our horizon of sight in the same 'spacetime bubble', can only be part of the universe.

Some might claim however that the universe 'started' in the Big Bang, that time, space and material existence started in the Big Bang.
This brings us back to the old days of mysticism...

Future scientific discoveries will eventually provide a better answer then that.
 
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  • #86
wuliheron
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The real meaning of the statement that the universe is uncaused is however is that it did not appear suddenly out of nothing, but had existed always, and will always exist.

These are just two ways of saying the same thing, that is, that existence has no cause. Here is the dictionary definition of supernatural:

Of or relating to existence outside the natural world.
Attributed to a power that seems to violate or go beyond natural forces.
Of or relating to a deity.
Of or relating to the immediate exercise of divine power; miraculous.
Of or relating to the miraculous.

Existence can be said to fullfill all of these criteria.
 
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  • #87
heusdens
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Originally posted by wuliheron
These are just two ways of saying the same thing, that is, that existence has no cause. Here is the dictionary definition of supernatural:

1. Of or relating to existence outside the natural world.
2. Attributed to a power that seems to violate or go beyond natural forces.
3. Of or relating to a deity.
4. Of or relating to the immediate exercise of divine power; miraculous.
5. Of or relating to the miraculous.


Existence can be said to fullfill all of these criteria.

I don't see that exactly.
Existence is not supernatural, and existence does not fullfill any of your criteria, I'm affraid.

You are trapped into thinking that what is true for all members of a group, must be true for the group itself. You cannot place the laws of causality outside the existing material world they don't have meaning there, material existence is an eternal process, the process itself consists of endless excercises of the law of cause-and-effect, so existence is causality.

1. Existence (material existence) is not 'outside' the natural world. The natural world IS existence, without the need for a 'deity'.

2. Natural forces don't violate natural forces, natural forces can only violate our models of natural forces, which means either we have conducted a bad experiment, or we discovered a new behaviour in nature, not previously known

3. Existence does not relate to a 'deity', not withstanding the fact that some existing people are exercising a 'relation' to a 'deity'.

4. Nor does existence relate to 'divine power/

5. This is self-referential (something miraculous is mysterious), so also falls of.

Not much mystery left then, don't you think?

The last remark is, if you call all of existence a mystery, then everything is mysterious and at the same time nothing is mysterious, the word 'mystery' is without meaning then, because then you can't distinguish between something mysterious and something that is not. There is only light because there is dark. There can only be mystery (a phenomena that can not be explained in terms of natural and understood phenomena) because there are phenomena that are fully understood.

But if is satisfies you, call life a mystery, an adventure, or anything you please!
 
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  • #88
wuliheron
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Existence is not supernatural, and existence does not fullfill any of your criteria, I'm affraid.

You are trapped into thinking that what is true for all members of a group, must be true for the group itself. You cannot place the laws of causality outside the existing material world they don't have meaning there, material existence is an eternal process, the process itself consists of endless excercises of the law of cause-and-effect, so existence is causality.

I recommend you check into the "hotel paradox" of infinity.

1. Existence (material existence) is not 'outside' the natural world. The natural world IS existence, without the need for a 'deity'.

2. Natural forces don't violate natural forces, natural forces can only violate our models of natural forces, which means either we have conducted a bad experiment, or we discovered a new behaviour in nature, not previously known

You realize this contradicts your original argument above that I am confusing the group and the members of the group. Which is it? Is existence separate and distinct from from its constituents or not?

The last remark is, if you call all of existence a mystery, then everything is mysterious and at the same time nothing is mysterious, the word 'mystery' is without meaning then, because then you can't distinguish between something mysterious and something that is not. There is only light because there is dark. There can only be mystery (a phenomena that can not be explained in terms of natural and understood phenomena) because there are phenomena that are fully understood.

Existence is evidently a paradox, of course anything I can say about it is paradoxical and contradicts itself. Everything I say is a lie, existence is nonexistence, reality is illusory, etc. These are all variations of the "liar's paradox" which are variations of the paradox of existence.
 
  • #89
heusdens
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Originally posted by wuliheron
I recommend you check into the "hotel paradox" of infinity.


We cannot conceive of infinity without contradiction.

Further more, as Kant has shown, the beginning of time is equally well provable as the infinity of time. So, existence therefore is a contradiction.

You realize this contradicts your original argument above that I am confusing the group and the members of the group. Which is it? Is existence separate and distinct from from its constituents or not?

The universe (all of existence) is the group, everything in the universe are it's members. Causality explains how things in the universe are the effects of previous causes. Causality can not be applied to the universe as a whole.

Existence is evidently a paradox, of course anything I can say about it is paradoxical and contradicts itself. Everything I say is a lie, existence is nonexistence, reality is illusory, etc. These are all variations of the "liar's paradox" which are variations of the paradox of existence.

Not pradadox, it is a contradiction. Material existence is in contradiction with itself, which causes it to change/move.
Material existence without change/motion would be incomprehensible.
 
  • #90
wuliheron
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Not pradadox, it is a contradiction. Material existence is in contradiction with itself, which causes it to change/move.
Material existence without change/motion would be incomprehensible.

Paradox has different meanings for different people. Broadly it refers to the irrational, inexplicable, self-referential and self-contradictory, or merely contradictory but somehow true. Unfortunately people also have different ideas about exactly what is rational, logical, and true which make defining paradox all that much more difficult. It may be that paradox is ultimately ineffable.

You can assert of course that existence is infinite by default as the "least absurd" explanation, however one absurdity is as good as another one according to which standards you care to use. Especially an absurdity with no evidence to support it. As Zeno and others have demonstrated, existence without change/motion is obviously not any more or less incomprehensible than infinity and may even actually be the same thing-- singularity.
 
  • #91
heusdens
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Originally posted by wuliheron
I recommend you check into the "hotel paradox" of infinity.

Do you mean Hilberts hotel?
 
  • #92
wuliheron
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Exactly. Essentially you are asserting the paradoxical position that Change is the only constant. If you attempt to work your way around this by piling one infinity on top of another, you run into Hilbert's Hotel paradox which just leads to more absurdities.

Bottom line, all of logic is based upon reductio ad absurdum. This is what I call the "backdoor" approach. Instead of proving something directly, you sneak in the backdoor and prove the alternatives are absurd. In the case of the paradox of existence, like the liar's paradox, every explanation is absurd as Zeno and others have repeatedly demonstrated for thousands of years.
 
  • #93
drag
Science Advisor
1,100
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Greetings !

Huh... What's "Hilbert's Hotel" ?
Originally posted by heusdens
Anything IN the universe obeys causal principles (at least to some extent, QM may tell a different story however) but not the universe as a whole.
Oh... really ? Prove it.
The Universe is a system - it is two or more
components with some kind of connection between
themselves. The rest (components & connections)
are probabalistic assumptions.
Originally posted by heusdens
Suppose we have a box with coines in them. I make the following statement about this box of coins. I say: "everything in the box weights less then 1 kilogram".
Now the fact shows up that the coin with the maximum weight is exactly 100 gram. However the weigt of the box of coins minus the weight of the box itself is 2 kilograms, so the coins together weight 2 kilograms.

Is my statement true or not?

You can argue it is true because there is no coin which weights more then 1 kilogram. Each coin weights less then 1 kilogram.
And you can argue that it is false because the weight of all the coins together is more then 1 kilogram.

This is an introduction to the slippery use of language, which is used in the statement "everything came from nothing".

The statement has double meaning, it can either mean that every individual thing came from nothing, i.e. the statement says that is is true for every individual thing that it came from nothing, i.e. it did not come from anything.
Or, alternatively, it can mean to say that everything in totallity came from nothing, i.e. it didn't come from anything.

The first statement is of course false, because of the law of causal effect. The second statement is however true.

This may seem contradictional, but you have to consider that the truthvalue of a statement about all members of a group is not necessarily the same as the truthvalue of a statement about the group itself.

For instance, we can say that every member of a football team has a parent. But the football team itself does not (necesarily) have a parent.

This type of argument, based on this confusion, is often used in defending the existence of a "creator", which in simple forms is the following line of argument: Everything has a cause. The world exists. So, it must have a cause, or been caused by something. Hence, a creator is needed (no creation without creator).
Hmm... What ?!

Live long and prosper.
 
  • #94
Mentat
3,918
3


Originally posted by heusdens
Well your intitial statement "everything came from nothing" is a typical example of flawed use of language expressions. It should have been stated like "The universe is uncaused". (we can for reasons of avoiding ambiguity not use the term "everything" for "universe")

I didn't say "everything came from nothing"! That was Eyesee.
 
  • #95
M. Gaspar
679
1
Question

Why do we chase our tails?
 
  • #96
wuliheron
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We chase our tails because existence is demonstrably paradoxical. What else would you have us do? :0)
 
  • #97
Mentat
3,918
3


Originally posted by M. Gaspar
Why do we chase our tails?

What are you talking about?
 
  • #98
If existence is eternal, i.e. "things" can't come into existence, then how can "things" exist in the first place? And it's impossible for anyone to look back to eternity so of what use is this point of view even merely as a logical exercise?


OTOh, the fact that "things" exist can be used simply as proof that they came into existence. And to avoid an infinite regression of cause and effect, we merely place our starting point to when there was absolutely nothing in the universe. The question of existence then is resolved.
 
  • #99
Mentat
3,918
3
Originally posted by Eyesee
If existence is eternal, i.e. "things" can't come into existence, then how can "things" exist in the first place? And it's impossible for anyone to look back to eternity so of what use is this point of view even merely as a logical exercise?


OTOh, the fact that "things" exist can be used simply as proof that they came into existence. And to avoid an infinite regression of cause and effect, we merely place our starting point to when there was absolutely nothing in the universe. The question of existence then is resolved.

Whoah, hold the phone. Why does "existence is eternal" = "'things' can't come into existence"?
 
  • #100
heusdens
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0


Originally posted by Mentat
I didn't say "everything came from nothing"! That was Eyesee.

I see. Well I meant to say The initial statement of this thread. Sorry.
 
  • #101
heusdens
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Originally posted by Mentat
Whoah, hold the phone. Why does "existence is eternal" = "'things' can't come into existence"?

Well, the saying is "from nothinh comes nothing" which means that the existing world didn't come from nothing. So, there was no 'begin' to existence, and therefore existence is eternal.
 
  • #102
heusdens
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0
Originally posted by Eyesee
If existence is eternal, i.e. "things" can't come into existence, then how can "things" exist in the first place? And it's impossible for anyone to look back to eternity so of what use is this point of view even merely as a logical exercise?

The implications are merely "philosophical". A point of view taken in by Idealist (and Religion) is mostly that there was a definite beginning to the world ("creation"). Materialist however claim there was no beginning.


OTOh, the fact that "things" exist can be used simply as proof that they came into existence. And to avoid an infinite regression of cause and effect, we merely place our starting point to when there was absolutely nothing in the universe. The question of existence then is resolved.

What do you mean "came into existence"? A causal effect. So, the world itself is the effect of ... yes, of what then? If there was no previous cause, which must be a previous world in whatever form, then how can there be an effect?

So, in fact you didn't resolve the question of existence, but made it into a miracle (the world popping up out of nothing).

The way the world exists is that the world is the effect of the world itself, by way of motion and change that takes place in the world.
The world is ever in motion, is ever reshaping itself, and this goes on without end.
 
  • #103
heusdens
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0
Originally posted by wuliheron
Exactly. Essentially you are asserting the paradoxical position that Change is the only constant. If you attempt to work your way around this by piling one infinity on top of another, you run into Hilbert's Hotel paradox which just leads to more absurdities.

The world is changing always, yes. But is that a paradox?
I don't think that Hilbert's Hotel is a paradox, it is more a description of the properties of infinity (namely infinity plus any number = infinity, etc).


Bottom line, all of logic is based upon reductio ad absurdum. This is what I call the "backdoor" approach. Instead of proving something directly, you sneak in the backdoor and prove the alternatives are absurd. In the case of the paradox of existence, like the liar's paradox, every explanation is absurd as Zeno and others have repeatedly demonstrated for thousands of years.

The paradox of Zeno ( the paradox of movement) is fully resolved with infinitesimal calculus.

What kind of direct proof are you referring to? Proof of existence?
What proof do you want or suggest?
 
  • #104
Originally posted by heusdens
The implications are merely "philosophical". A point of view taken in by Idealist (and Religion) is mostly that there was a definite beginning to the world ("creation"). Materialist however claim there was no beginning.



What do you mean "came into existence"? A causal effect. So, the world itself is the effect of ... yes, of what then? If there was no previous cause, which must be a previous world in whatever form, then how can there be an effect?

So, in fact you didn't resolve the question of existence, but made it into a miracle (the world popping up out of nothing).

The way the world exists is that the world is the effect of the world itself, by way of motion and change that takes place in the world.
The world is ever in motion, is ever reshaping itself, and this goes on without end.


Yes, something from nothing is a miracle, but existence is a miracle, anyway you look at it. The more interesting questions are the characteristics of existence, imo. Like, is existence intelligent? Is it evolving? Is it moving towards a goal? Is it just mechanical parts moving randomly?
 
  • #105
heusdens
1,736
0
Originally posted by Eyesee
Yes, something from nothing is a miracle, but existence is a miracle, anyway you look at it. The more interesting questions are the characteristics of existence, imo. Like, is existence intelligent? Is it evolving? Is it moving towards a goal? Is it just mechanical parts moving randomly?

Material existence is evolving, it is historical. And the way it evolves is far from randomly, otherwise we would not have discovered forces like gravity, and so. Gravity determines the way matter moves in a structured way. A randomly moving world would be uncausal, it would not provide for any structure, neither for any progress in the world. There is of course randomness in the world, but not total randomness. Things are chaotic but at the same time we can discover patterns and establish laws that govern the evolution of material existence.

The way material existence is evolving, can be called progressive.
This is true for the complexity of the universe (the formation of large scale structures, stars, planetary systems), for life forms (macromolecules able of self-reproduction, one-celled life forms, complex life forms, etc.), and for human society (society of hunters and gatherers, to a society performing space traveling and science).

Hence the term used for this property of the material world: historic.
A randomly moving material world, would not be historical, cause there would not be a difference between paste and future.

For further reading, see:
- Historical Materialism
- Dialectical Materialism
 
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