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Thread: Everything predetermined from the start of time?

  1. #1 Everything predetermined from the start of time? 
    Forum Sophomore somfooleishfool's Avatar
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    I propose that from the moment that time started, everything was on a set course for where it is today. To explain this I will simplify the universe down to a box with say 2 particles in it. Particle A and particle B. particle A colides into particle B at x direction and y velocity causing particle b to go flying off in new direction x and new velocity y. A while later particle B collides again into particle A sending it off on another tangent. The point here is that everything is cause and effect, a chain reaction. B hit a because a hit b and on it goes. I suggest that if you up-scale this, it is no different.

    From the moment of the big bang, everything that has happened, and that will happen, has been a chain reaction from the affect one or several particles has on one or several other particles. I don't beleve chemistry or biology change this in any way, I think the concept still applys. The only thing I can think of that may break this is perhaps the world of quantum. quantum science is weird stuff.

    I think I've covered if all. Comments? I actually thoroughly believe this by the way.

    Edit: typo


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  3. #2  
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    Quote Originally Posted by somfooleishfool View Post
    I propose that from the moment that time started, everything was on a set course for where it is today. To explain this I will simplify the universe down to a box with say 2 particles in it. Particle A and particle B. particle A colides into particle B at x direction and y velocity causing particle b to go flying off in new direction x and new velocity y. A while later particle B collides again into particle A sending it off on another tangent. The point here is that everything is cause and effect, a chain reaction. B hit a because a hit b and on it goes. I suggest that if you up-scale this, it is no different.

    From the moment of the big bang, everything that has happened, and that will happen, has been a chain reaction from the affect one or several particles has on one or several other particles. I don't beleve chemistry or biology change this in any way, I think the concept still applys. The only thing I can think of that may break this is perhaps the world of quantum. quantum science is weird stuff.

    I think I've covered if all. Comments? I actually thoroughly believe this by the way.

    Edit: typo
    Determinism isn't really a novel idea. I wouldn't be surprised if many physicists subscribed to a similar outlook- of a universe that is hypothetically, if not always practically, predictable as a whole. As you've presented the idea, it is just that- an idea. What makes this an hypothesis? Can you suggest practical way (even if they're beyond us technologically), that we might test this? What predictions about the behaviour of the universe does such an hypothesis make that would not be found in a non-deterministic universe?


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    The first cause would have to be causeless, but from then on after the arbitrary initial state there could be determinism. If not determinism from then on, then there would have to be intermediate places where events happened based on nothing at all, as mini first causes. Could this even work?
    Last edited by questor; August 15th, 2011 at 01:27 AM.
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  5. #4  
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheBiologista View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by somfooleishfool View Post
    I propose that from the moment that time started, everything was on a set course for where it is today. To explain this I will simplify the universe down to a box with say 2 particles in it. Particle A and particle B. particle A colides into particle B at x direction and y velocity causing particle b to go flying off in new direction x and new velocity y. A while later particle B collides again into particle A sending it off on another tangent. The point here is that everything is cause and effect, a chain reaction. B hit a because a hit b and on it goes. I suggest that if you up-scale this, it is no different.

    From the moment of the big bang, everything that has happened, and that will happen, has been a chain reaction from the affect one or several particles has on one or several other particles. I don't beleve chemistry or biology change this in any way, I think the concept still applys. The only thing I can think of that may break this is perhaps the world of quantum. quantum science is weird stuff.

    I think I've covered if all. Comments? I actually thoroughly believe this by the way.

    Edit: typo
    Determinism isn't really a novel idea. I wouldn't be surprised if many physicists subscribed to a similar outlook- of a universe that is hypothetically, if not always practically, predictable as a whole. As you've presented the idea, it is just that- an idea. What makes this an hypothesis? Can you suggest practical way (even if they're beyond us technologically), that we might test this? What predictions about the behaviour of the universe does such an hypothesis make that would not be found in a non-deterministic universe?
    I don't have the scientific knowledge to produce a proper hypothesis, I only posted it here because it seemed the topic of best fit.

    Questor's post actually quite well describes what I was trying to get at.
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  6. #5  
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    shame we know that stochastic processes exist.
    "Kill them all and let God sort them out."

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  7. #6  
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    This thread properly belongs in philosophy. Hopefully it will be moved there, because I am planning to now philosophically expound.

    The determinism being spoken of here is best summed by the following quote from Pierre-Simon Laplace;

    "We may regard the present state of the universe as the effect of its past and the cause of its future. An intellect which at a certain moment would know all forces that set nature in motion, and all positions of all items of which nature is composed, if this intellect were also vast enough to submit these data to analysis, it would embrace in a single formula the movements of the greatest bodies of the universe and those of the tiniest atom; for such an intellect nothing would be uncertain and the future just like the past would be present before its eyes."
    —Pierre Simon Laplace

    Such a view is unsurprising considering that Laplace lived in the age of Classical Newtonian Mechanics. before Einstein and Relativity, Quantum Mechanics, even before Maxwell's Equations.
    Here is the Wiki on Laplace; Pierre-Simon Laplace - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Of course, if one wishes to maintain a biological view of human consciousness, without resorting to metaphysics, then it follows that free will is wholly illusory if absolute determinism is true.
    To paraphrase, in a context of scientific materialism, determinism and free will are mutually exclusive.

    Now let's look at Quantum Mechanics, which as it now stands predicts probabilities while offering no definite outcomes. Einstein was of the opinion that quantum particles did in-fact obey deterministic rules but that there were variables unknown to quantum theory.
    However there was a physicist named John Stewart Bell who provided a theory that makes a very strong case for Quantum Mechanics as truly stochastic.
    Here's the Wiki on it; Bell's theorem - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    It would appear that the basic building blocks of all matter do not behave completely deterministically.

    Now let's consider Big Bang Theory. While BBT doesn't directly address the initial moment of the BB it does get within about 10^-40 second or so of it.
    What BBT does unambiguously state is that it wasn't an expansion of matter into a preexisting space and time, but it was an expansion of matter, space, and time itself.
    Since there is no discernable cause preceding the BB there can be no assumption of determinism in the origin of The Universe.

    There is one more piece I need to show before I stitch this all together.
    Check out The Law of Large Numbers; Law of large numbers - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Considering the probabilistic nature of QM, and a potentially causeless origin for The Universe, I propose that determinism cannot be axiomatic. Axiom - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Determinism is instead an emergent property from probability according to the law of large numbers. Emergence - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Within the context of causality being emergent as opposed to axiomatic we now have some wiggle room to entertain various hypothesis concerning free will as true, without resorting to assumptions of metaphysics.

    Just some of my thoughts. Thank you for your consideration.
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    Good post there GiantEvil.

    Yes, QM suggests there are events that are truly random, so knowing all the states of everything at any point, as Laplace proposed, would still not give an entity the ability to predict the future in an absolute sense. The probabilities are known to an extent stochastically, but not absolutely.

    As far as free will is concerned; I don't believe true randomness leaves any room for true free will as people generally would think about it. As the predetermined bits of our existence are, by definition, predetermined, we have no independent control over them, i.e. we are part of it, so our choices are not free in that sense. As far as randomness is concerned, we don't have any say in that either, as truly random events are, again by definition, truly random and independent of any influence.
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

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  9. #8  
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    Thank you Giantevil. I do not know much about quantum physics because I tend to ignore it because it doesn't seem to follow any laws. Your post was educational to me .
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    @ somfooleishfool; welcome.

    Now, let me define free will as choice, and let me define choice as; Given A, Then only B Or only C.
    Now for an example; Given(A coin toss), Then only(Lands heads) Or only(Lands tails).
    Please note that the operation of Or is predicated on Given​ A.
    It requires a stochastic process to have Or as a logical operator.
    In a deterministic process there are no Or operations.

    Now as to the how's and why's of an individuals cognitive experience of an "I", and whether or not that sense of "I" is on some level factual or wholly illusory, I don't know.
    I would sure like to see some idea's that reference some logical construct or empirical data without merely being a statement of bias.
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  11. #10 Predetermined or Constant? 
    Stundent of Life The-Ology's Avatar
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    Hello Everyone. This reply may be more philosophical, but it helps me make some sense of things when thinking of the Universe in the macro perspective. The more I think about the Universe as an ever-changing mass of energy, the more complicated explanations become. I began to think of the Universe as constant. What I mean to say is that everything that has, does, or will exist has always existed and has never changed. I think of the Universe (or what's beyond the Universe) somewhat like the snow on a television set. Just infinite random entropy, in which something like our Universe may exist in coincidentally organized randomness. The reason we experience change, is the illusion of time. To me, time is just the way we perceive our journey through a certain perspective. As one traverses the Universe in the "4th dimension", the Universe seems to change form. This brings us to the perceiver; someone who is able to reflect on their own existence. Again, I think the simple explanation holds the most merit; that there is only one perceiver who veiws our world from an infinite number of perspectives. Individually, humans would relate to something like a brain cell. We don't recognize our Unity with the whole, but we continue to fullfill our "purpose". It would be hard to perceive the Universe from my perspective if I could see everything the rest of the "brain" sees, so I am cut off from all but what I need. Such organized systems in this random sea of entropy means that simply stepping just outside of our current perspective or path could land us in random chaos (the snowy television). Death strikes me as a good example of this. Once we reach the end of a person's "life", their perspective is no longer accessible without turning back. Turning back may lead to things like ghosts, and continuing on could mean a chaotic darkness. One could also search for a new subject to perceive or body to inhabit as we would understand it. Just typing this response makes me realize how hard it is to put my thoughts into words, so if anyone would like to elaborate or ask questions so we can come to a better understanding, please do. If you want to call me crazy, thats cool too, just tell me why so I can modify my own outlook. Looking forward to your replies. Peace.
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    determinism eliminates probablity so no, the universe works on probability not determinism.
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  13. #12  
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    Somfooleishfool, if you have no objections I can move this to the philosophy subforum?
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    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil View Post
    This thread properly belongs in philosophy. Hopefully it will be moved there, because I am planning to now philosophically expound.

    The determinism being spoken of here is best summed by the following quote from Pierre-Simon Laplace;

    "We may regard the present state of the universe as the effect of its past and the cause of its future. An intellect which at a certain moment would know all forces that set nature in motion, and all positions of all items of which nature is composed, if this intellect were also vast enough to submit these data to analysis, it would embrace in a single formula the movements of the greatest bodies of the universe and those of the tiniest atom; for such an intellect nothing would be uncertain and the future just like the past would be present before its eyes."
    —Pierre Simon Laplace

    Such a view is unsurprising considering that Laplace lived in the age of Classical Newtonian Mechanics. before Einstein and Relativity, Quantum Mechanics, even before Maxwell's Equations.
    Here is the Wiki on Laplace; Pierre-Simon Laplace - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Of course, if one wishes to maintain a biological view of human consciousness, without resorting to metaphysics, then it follows that free will is wholly illusory if absolute determinism is true.
    To paraphrase, in a context of scientific materialism, determinism and free will are mutually exclusive.

    Now let's look at Quantum Mechanics, which as it now stands predicts probabilities while offering no definite outcomes. Einstein was of the opinion that quantum particles did in-fact obey deterministic rules but that there were variables unknown to quantum theory.
    However there was a physicist named John Stewart Bell who provided a theory that makes a very strong case for Quantum Mechanics as truly stochastic.
    Here's the Wiki on it; Bell's theorem - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    It would appear that the basic building blocks of all matter do not behave completely deterministically.

    Now let's consider Big Bang Theory. While BBT doesn't directly address the initial moment of the BB it does get within about 10^-40 second or so of it.
    What BBT does unambiguously state is that it wasn't an expansion of matter into a preexisting space and time, but it was an expansion of matter, space, and time itself.
    Since there is no discernable cause preceding the BB there can be no assumption of determinism in the origin of The Universe.

    There is one more piece I need to show before I stitch this all together.
    Check out The Law of Large Numbers; Law of large numbers - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Considering the probabilistic nature of QM, and a potentially causeless origin for The Universe, I propose that determinism cannot be axiomatic. Axiom - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Determinism is instead an emergent property from probability according to the law of large numbers. Emergence - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Within the context of causality being emergent as opposed to axiomatic we now have some wiggle room to entertain various hypothesis concerning free will as true, without resorting to assumptions of metaphysics.

    Just some of my thoughts. Thank you for your consideration.
    excellent post
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  15. #14  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Verndewd View Post
    determinism eliminates probablity so no, the universe works on probability not determinism.
    Well, not really when you think about it. We often describe/model very complex but deterministic events in probabilistic terms. Example, poker hands. The shuffling of a deck of cards is not truly random, merely impractical to predict in deterministic terms. So we sort of put mathematical bounds it instead, predict in a more general sense. I don't know much about things like radioactive decay, so I can't say if there's an analogy there, just that probabilistic modelling is still useful in a deterministic universe.
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheBiologista View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Verndewd View Post
    determinism eliminates probablity so no, the universe works on probability not determinism.
    Well, not really when you think about it. We often describe/model very complex but deterministic events in probabilistic terms. Example, poker hands. The shuffling of a deck of cards is not truly random, merely impractical to predict in deterministic terms. So we sort of put mathematical bounds it instead, predict in a more general sense. I don't know much about things like radioactive decay, so I can't say if there's an analogy there, just that probabilistic modelling is still useful in a deterministic universe.
    Thats not really a sufficient argument against probablistic mechanisms that cause emergent determinism.
    I like to use precognition as an example, having had many experiences with this and knowing others that have.

    precognition is a zero point property that depends entirely on probablistic mechanisms . A person can get dream after dream of a world event but thats probability, it becomes deterministic after probabilities align to make the world event happen.
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  17. #16  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Verndewd View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by TheBiologista View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Verndewd View Post
    determinism eliminates probablity so no, the universe works on probability not determinism.
    Well, not really when you think about it. We often describe/model very complex but deterministic events in probabilistic terms. Example, poker hands. The shuffling of a deck of cards is not truly random, merely impractical to predict in deterministic terms. So we sort of put mathematical bounds it instead, predict in a more general sense. I don't know much about things like radioactive decay, so I can't say if there's an analogy there, just that probabilistic modelling is still useful in a deterministic universe.
    Thats not really a sufficient argument against probablistic mechanisms that cause emergent determinism.
    That doesn't make any sense. I understand all of those words, but you can't put them together that way. It's just not allowed. You've also missed my point entirely. I'm not saying the world is deterministic or probabilistic, I'm just saying that pointing to the field of probability is not evidence either way.

    Quote Originally Posted by Verndewd View Post
    I like to use precognition as an example, having had many experiences with this and knowing others that have.

    precognition is a zero point property that depends entirely on probablistic mechanisms . A person can get dream after dream of a world event but thats probability, it becomes deterministic after probabilities align to make the world event happen.
    Oh bloody hell.
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  18. #17  
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    Quote Originally Posted by The-Ology View Post
    Hello Everyone. .
    Have you ever heard about paragraphs? It would make your walloftext posts a lot easier to bother reading.
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    When I posted that, it wouldn't let me format anything. I couldn't press enter for a new paragraph or edit a previous sentence without backspacing to it.

    As you can see, the problem has been fixed.

    I'm sorry for making others attempt to read over a paragraph continuously.
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheBiologista View Post
    Somfooleishfool, if you have no objections I can move this to the philosophy subforum?
    go right ahead, you never have to ask permission to move a thread of mine. If you or any mod feels that a thread of mine belongs somewhere else, here is my permission to move it
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  21. #20  
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    Quote Originally Posted by The-Ology View Post
    When I posted that, it wouldn't let me format anything. I couldn't press enter for a new paragraph or edit a previous sentence without backspacing to it.

    As you can see, the problem has been fixed.

    I'm sorry for making others attempt to read over a paragraph continuously.
    feel free to repost your post reformatted. I for one didnt bother reading the wall of text :P.

    and @thebiologista
    "That doesn't make any sense. I understand all of those words, but you can't put them together that way. It's just not allowed."
    That quote is hillarious. I might just steal this quote in some future context
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    GiantEvil wrote:
    To paraphrase, in a context of scientific materialism, determinism and free will are mutually exclusive.
    Please help give the definition of free will.

    I am interested in this because I have recently watched a debate about God's existence between Richard Dawkins and a physicist. The Physicist argued that if we agree that there is free will it must have been provided by God, as everything else is deterministic. I think Dawkins still has not given a good riposte on this.
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  23. #22  
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    Quote Originally Posted by prasit View Post
    GiantEvil wrote:
    To paraphrase, in a context of scientific materialism, determinism and free will are mutually exclusive.
    Please help give the definition of free will.

    I am interested in this because I have recently watched a debate about God's existence between Richard Dawkins and a physicist. The Physicist argued that if we agree that there is free will it must have been provided by God, as everything else is deterministic. I think Dawkins still has not given a good riposte on this.
    Now, let me define free will as choice, and let me define choice as; Given A, Then only B Or only C.
    Now for an example; Given(A coin toss), Then only(Lands heads) Or only(Lands tails).
    Please note that the operation of Or is predicated on Given​ A.
    It requires a stochastic process to have Or as a logical operator.
    In a deterministic process there are no Or operations.

    Sorry prasit, don't know about god.
    I am personally inclined toward the opinion that there is no such thing as anthropic deity.
    Post #6 of this thread outlines my view's concerning determinism.
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    I think the more you know about a given condition A (the coin toss, the flip force, the wind speed, the floor hardness, the coin's mass, the coin's symmetry etc.) the more certain you are of the outcome (most likely head, for example) In everyday life the choice is not equally probable, you are more likely to duck a ball throwing at you rather than intercept it with your face. Is there free will in this case?
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    Quote Originally Posted by prasit View Post
    GiantEvil wrote:
    To paraphrase, in a context of scientific materialism, determinism and free will are mutually exclusive.
    Please help give the definition of free will.

    I am interested in this because I have recently watched a debate about God's existence between Richard Dawkins and a physicist. The Physicist argued that if we agree that there is free will it must have been provided by God, as everything else is deterministic. I think Dawkins still has not given a good riposte on this.
    Why would we assume that if free will exists, it must have been granted by God? Not understanding the origin of something not a reason to assume some very specific thing is responsible, particularly in the absence of evidence for the existence of that thing.
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  26. #25  
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    Quote Originally Posted by prasit View Post
    I think the more you know about a given condition A (the coin toss, the flip force, the wind speed, the floor hardness, the coin's mass, the coin's symmetry etc.) the more certain you are of the outcome (most likely head, for example) In everyday life the choice is not equally probable, you are more likely to duck a ball throwing at you rather than intercept it with your face. Is there free will in this case?
    It is possible one might choose to intercept the ball with their face. Would this be because the data set involved indicates a greater future reward potential for intercepting the ball with one's face?
    Ducking the ball is of course a greedy algorithm solution. Greedy algorithm - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Not ducking the ball(on purpose) despite an almost overwhelming instinct to do so because you hope to impress a girl through such, is the sort of behavior mediated through the frontal cortex or frontal lobe.
    Frontal lobe - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    It would appear that different regions of the brain offer different possible responses to a specific stimuli.
    Now, is the chosen response because of simple majority of action potential relative to regional activity?
    Really, I just ran up on this question. Some links? Help?
    Well, till later I must leave that part there.

    As for the coin, the quanta it is made of do not have certain positions. Uncertainty principle - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    In fact, the macroscopic coin has an associate wave function. Matter wave - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Uncertainty not only has an empirically observed inductive basis. It also has a deductive basis as well. Bell's theorem - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Laplaceian determinism shoot's out the window.
    When Einstein declared that "God doe's not play dice", Bohr rightly retorted "Albert, stop telling god what to do".
    Of course no god is actually needed, one can assume that the universe is made of dice.
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    Why would we assume that if free will exists, it must have been granted by God?
    We would not assume, but theist will. Dawkins called it "God of the gaps" tactic.

    Although GiantEvil indicates that the future direction is not certain, I still think one can make good prediction of how a man will think and behave, if he has sufficient knowledge of the man's background, past actions, and current environment (and also good understanding of human's psychology). That makes me question whether free will is completely free, or very limited.
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    I would say that will is limited only by imagination. Action however, is limited by the law's of physics.
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    Lucky me. Lucky mud.
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    Agree. But imagination is also limited by past experience and current environment.
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    Quote Originally Posted by prasit View Post
    Agree. But imagination is also limited by past experience and current environment.
    Past experience and current environment are memory and perception. Imagination is capable of defining objects which belong to neither of these.
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    Past experience and current environment are memory and perception. Imagination is capable of defining objects which belong to neither of these.
    Still the objects of imagination will not extended much further than the existing frame of reference. For example, a caveman may not be able to imagine the existence of microorganism. And even when a person can imagine something, his current memory and perception will make him stay clear of that imagination. For example an Islam will not imagine the world without Allah.
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    Could it not be a legitimate meditational practice to imagine a world without Buddha?
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    Great thread. Predetermined implies a consciousness.

    I've often wondered if the universe were to start over once again, would everything happen the same way. Unless there was a new actor, I don't see any reason why it shouldn't. When you refer to quantum randomness, you view it from our perspective. If you know all the details for all time then you can predict a trajectory accurately. Things are random because the human mind is not equipped to process the infinite (to our minds) information necessary to determine the exact outcome quickly enough. I'm not saying that everything was determined- that is dumb. I admit that the series of events that transpired before I came to be posting on this message board is mind-blowing. Everything is random in the sense that it is unplanned. There is no order to it but, the actions are not random. Everything is an effect. I think the reason the world is random now is because of the billions and billions of years of action that have elapsed up till now; entropy builds because the universe as a system becomes more unknowable to the human mind. Just think of your own life as an example, every second you take in more and more information and both your history and your future become more and more difficult to predict. We are all tiny universes unto ourselves.

    ITP: Things are random because their outcomes are physically unknowable.
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    Quote Originally Posted by springpool View Post
    Great thread. Predetermined implies a consciousness.

    I've often wondered if the universe were to start over once again, would everything happen the same way. Unless there was a new actor, I don't see any reason why it shouldn't. When you refer to quantum randomness, you view it from our perspective. If you know all the details for all time then you can predict a trajectory accurately. Things are random because the human mind is not equipped to process the infinite (to our minds) information necessary to determine the exact outcome quickly enough. I'm not saying that everything was determined- that is dumb. I admit that the series of events that transpired before I came to be posting on this message board is mind-blowing. Everything is random in the sense that it is unplanned. There is no order to it but, the actions are not random. Everything is an effect. I think the reason the world is random now is because of the billions and billions of years of action that have elapsed up till now; entropy builds because the universe as a system becomes more unknowable to the human mind. Just think of your own life as an example, every second you take in more and more information and both your history and your future become more and more difficult to predict. We are all tiny universes unto ourselves.

    ITP: Things are random because their outcomes are physically unknowable.
    Hmmmm? Ranch? Or thousand island? For the word salad.

    Maybe vinaigrette?
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    I laughed, and den I cried. I included an 'In this post' for you.
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    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil View Post
    Could it not be a legitimate meditational practice to imagine a world without Buddha?
    ฺีMeditation means keeping your mind still, don't let it wander around, in essence: don't imagine. So it is not a legitimate meditation practice to imagine anything.

    Buddha said that the truth is out there, whether he discovers it or not. A world without Buddha is as probable as a world without Einstein.

    I fail to see how this is relevant to my earlier post.
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    Who's Buddha lol?
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    I don't see how a human approximation or simplified abstraction like "cause/effect" is any more fundamental or basic to reality than "random" at some levels, or "willed" at others. For one thing, as GiantEvil pointed out, the quantum level that provides a substrate for the physical world doesn't fit "cause/effect" framing at all.

    If we are going to use "cause/effect" language for our descriptions, we have to keep in mind that in the hierarchies of organization, the levels at once physical and logical on which we organize reality, causes occupy the same levels as effects. Substrates limit from below (frost forms on the pane, built of molecules in collision) but do not cause. Inclusive forms curb from above (air temp and humidity as given by weather patterns shape the overall type of frost) but do not cause.

    In that approach, the Delmore Schwartz line is a simple statement of cause and effect: "In dreams begin responsibilities". Dreams are then seen as moving (always) patterns in a level far from molecules, and not "caused" by their substrate of neurons and molecules.

    So the only problem with free will is that some interpret it as necessarily magical and unlimited - but we know that some people's freedom of will is greater than others (addicts, say), and that all will free or bound requires the physical brain to take its shape as an ever-changing but essentially stable pattern of neuronal firings.

    As long as the causative role of dreams and the like is recognized, deterministic philosophy holds no terrors - if I am caused by my thoughts, dreams, deliberate mental alterations, and so forth, I don't see any relevant distinction between "free" and "determined", between "I" as illusion and "I" as reality.
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    Quote Originally Posted by prasit View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil View Post
    Could it not be a legitimate meditational practice to imagine a world without Buddha?
    ฺีMeditation means keeping your mind still, don't let it wander around, in essence: don't imagine. So it is not a legitimate meditation practice to imagine anything.

    Buddha said that the truth is out there, whether he discovers it or not. A world without Buddha is as probable as a world without Einstein.

    I fail to see how this is relevant to my earlier post.
    Unicorn's, Pegasi, Troll's, Orc's, things that have been imagined but are not real.
    Jules Verne imagined aircraft, spacecraft, and a submarine long before these things became real.
    And sometimes some real things imagined to not be.

    And if people never imagined things uncomfortable for them to do so, none would ever be prepared for any unpleasantry.
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    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil View Post
    Now let's look at Quantum Mechanics, which as it now stands predicts probabilities while offering no definite outcomes. Einstein was of the opinion that quantum particles did in-fact obey deterministic rules but that there were variables unknown to quantum theory.
    However there was a physicist named John Stewart Bell who provided a theory that makes a very strong case for Quantum Mechanics as truly stochastic.
    Here's the Wiki on it; Bell's theorem - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    It would appear that the basic building blocks of all matter do not behave completely deterministically.
    I know nothing of physics, so i need to ask two questions before accepting this:

    Is the universe truly stochastic or is this simply a feature of perception? Can this be answered empirically?

    If stochastic at the quantum level, does this feature mean chemical, biological, sociological... levels also feature some stochasticism? Or are these levels emergent and not bound by preceding levels? Can this be answered empirically?

    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil View Post
    Since there is no discernable cause preceding the BB there can be no assumption of determinism in the origin of The Universe.
    I'm not sure i understand this. Are you saying that because anything 'before' the BB is, by definition, outside our universe and therefore unknowable, we should not assume determinism is true? I'm not sure how the nature the antecedent would impact upon its effect in such a way as to render the effect either determined or not.

    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil View Post
    Within the context of causality being emergent as opposed to axiomatic we now have some wiggle room to entertain various hypothesis concerning free will as true, without resorting to assumptions of metaphysics.
    This begins to answer my question, but i'm not sure how axiomatic versus emergent causality would be relevant to anything but a putative first cause. If quantum stochastism is sufficient for there to be unpredictable effects, it is only relevant to moment the act of free-will is made. Also, if acts are unpredictable (from stochastic mechanisms) this does not necessarily mean we have free-will - only that a random effect has been thrown into an otherwise deterministic chain - that randomness was a probability feature of the universe, not free-will.

    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil View Post
    There is one more piece I need to show before I stitch this all together.
    Check out The Law of Large Numbers; Law of large numbers - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Considering the probabilistic nature of QM, and a potentially causeless origin for The Universe, I propose that determinism cannot be axiomatic. Axiom - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Determinism is instead an emergent property from probability according to the law of large numbers. Emergence - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Interesting idea. Theoretically testable too, since the law of large numbers only works on large numbers we should be able to witness increasing randomness with less numbers.

    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil View Post
    Within the context of causality being emergent as opposed to axiomatic we now have some wiggle room to entertain various hypothesis concerning free will as true, without resorting to assumptions of metaphysics.
    I'm not convinced of this, as i explained above - the stochastic processes only give an element of unpredictability - this is not the same as free-will. Also, speaking of the law of large numbers, the numbers 30-60 are often thrown about as some kind of vague cut-off point. Are we talking 30-60 atoms, or sub-atomic particles, or what? No organelle within a neuron, let alone nervous system, operates with so few numbers. So, given the law of large numbers, the brain would behave in a deterministic fashion as it's numbers would be extremely high.

    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil View Post
    Now, is the chosen response because of simple majority of action potential relative to regional activity?
    Now that's a question. That is generally how the nervous system works, although action potentials themselves can be up-regulated or down-regulated by the action of other neural pathways concerned with processing different (or the same) information. Quite how this translates to actual decisions in the context of free-will - i'm not sure.

    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil View Post
    Now as to the how's and why's of an individuals cognitive experience of an "I", and whether or not that sense of "I" is on some level factual or wholly illusory, I don't know. I would sure like to see some idea's that reference some logical construct or empirical data without merely being a statement of bias.
    This is the closest one i know. There's another one but i'll have to dig around to find it.

    Libet, B., Gleason, C.A., Wright, E.W., Pearl, D.K. (1983). Time of conscious intention to act in relation to onset of cerebral activity (readiness-potential). The unconscious initiation of a freely voluntary act. Brain. 106 (3):623–642
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    [QUOTE=GiantEvil;281133]
    Quote Originally Posted by prasit View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil View Post
    Could it not be a legitimate meditational practice to imagine a world without Buddha?
    ฺีMeditation means keeping your mind still, don't let it wander around, in essence: don't imagine. So it is not a legitimate meditation practice to imagine anything.

    Buddha said that the truth is out there, whether he discovers it or not. A world without Buddha is as probable as a world without Einstein.
    The Buddha is irrelevant to Buddhism. If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him. He sought only to find happiness, not truth, but said he could only find the former through the latter.

    I've also been taught meditation quite differently. One does not seek to calm the mind, stopping it from wandering, but simply observing the mind as it does, inevitably, wander.

    Not sure how this is relevant to the thread.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prometheus
    Not sure how this is relevant to the thread.
    Well yea, it's sort of a sideline discussion about imagination. Picks up at post #27
    Quote Originally Posted by Prometheus
    Is the universe truly stochastic or is this simply a feature of perception? Can this be answered empirically?
    Bell's theorem - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Quote Originally Posted by Prometheus
    speaking of the law of large numbers, the numbers 30-60 are often thrown about as some kind of vague cut-off point.
    Don't know about no 30-60.
    Law of large numbers - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    One of the problems with using terminology like deterministic and stochastic, is there is bias concerning their relevance to an anthropic sense of rationality.

    I plan on organizing my thought's on these matters elsewhere, later.

    I found this article for free;
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/arti...6/?tool=pubmed
    Last edited by GiantEvil; August 25th, 2011 at 11:11 PM.
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    If quantum stochastism is sufficient for there to be unpredictable effects, it is only relevant to moment the act of free-will is made. Also, if acts are unpredictable (from stochastic mechanisms) this does not necessarily mean we have free-will - only that a random effect has been thrown into an otherwise deterministic chain
    That chain would have include dreams, ideas, filtered and otherwise analyzed sensory input, memories as modified by all that, and so forth.

    That is, the level of the will is far above the molecular level even, let alone the atomic one. Quantum stochastism would provide a degree of freedom in it, insofar as it affects the chaotic, Heisenberg uncertain, complexity amplifying inclusive levels. It does, we know (the human eye can detect one photon of light). We can of course refer to the mental experiences of dreams, ideas, memories, sensory inputs, constructed physical reality in time and space, etc, as illusory. In some sense they certainly are. But I'm not sure what information or understanding is gained thereby.

    We experience freedom of will. It does not seem to be supernatural, but rather a pattern in the substrate of patterns we term "character" or "nature" or "identity". By making the ordinary assumption of other people existing as we do, we can observe people with more and less freedom of will - addicts, say, have less. The brave and well prepared have more. Is it "illusion" they have more or less of?
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    [QUOTE=Prometheus;281187]
    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by prasit View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil View Post
    Could it not be a legitimate meditational practice to imagine a world without Buddha?
    ฺีMeditation means keeping your mind still, don't let it wander around, in essence: don't imagine. So it is not a legitimate meditation practice to imagine anything.

    Buddha said that the truth is out there, whether he discovers it or not. A world without Buddha is as probable as a world without Einstein.
    The Buddha is irrelevant to Buddhism. If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him. He sought only to find happiness, not truth, but said he could only find the former through the latter.

    I've also been taught meditation quite differently. One does not seek to calm the mind, stopping it from wandering, but simply observing the mind as it does, inevitably, wander.

    Not sure how this is relevant to the thread.
    Buddha founded Buddhism, why is he irrelevant? Why do you advise to kill him? Is it evil to seek for happiness?

    Your method of meditation is also recognized in Buddhism. The purpose is to detach yourself from the wandering mind and observe its nature. However, the practice is to observe, not to imagine.
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    Quote Originally Posted by somfooleishfool View Post
    I propose that from the moment that time started, everything was on a set course for where it is today. To explain this I will simplify the universe down to a box with say 2 particles in it. Particle A and particle B. particle A colides into particle B at x direction and y velocity causing particle b to go flying off in new direction x and new velocity y. A while later particle B collides again into particle A sending it off on another tangent. The point here is that everything is cause and effect, a chain reaction. B hit a because a hit b and on it goes. I suggest that if you up-scale this, it is no different.

    From the moment of the big bang, everything that has happened, and that will happen, has been a chain reaction from the affect one or several particles has on one or several other particles. I don't beleve chemistry or biology change this in any way, I think the concept still applys. The only thing I can think of that may break this is perhaps the world of quantum. quantum science is weird stuff.

    I think I've covered if all. Comments? I actually thoroughly believe this by the way.

    Edit: typo
    It seems the thread becomes be as usual philosophical discussion – something about something that cannot be tested or logically proved; when e.g., this and, perhaps as any other fundamental philosophycal problem,
    can be pithily considered only in framework of "the informational conception" (see, e.g., SSDZ posts and links in thread "Another God paradox" in this forum).

    On the question "Everything predetermined from the start of time?" the answer is "yes". Indeed, e.g., of August, 14, 02:48 AM everywhere – in every space point in Universe, including in every space points in every humans’ brains there was true information "there isn’t the thread "Everything…" in a science forum that will appear in 03:48 AM". Evidently that this statement contained all absolutely exact information about the thread – every word in the members’ posts, every electrons’, quarks’, etc. levels in the members and their PCs, etc. As a negation, but that evidently isn’t principal.

    Moreover, the information above existed in any time before the 03:48 AM – down to Universe Beginning and at "any time" before the Beginning, i.e. – "absolutely infinite long time ago" (see again the thread "Another…"pointed above). At moment 03:48 AM the negation only have transformed into "real material" thread.

    It is evident, that the information about rest everything in our Universe existed also "any time before" Beginning. Including – about every thought of every human; any human is only a spectator and a player in a scenario that "have been written and existed in "absolutely long time" before a realization in his/her life. This inference seems as rather dolefully, however – that helps to save adrenalin in some situations.

    Besides, generally speaking, - there exists a little "but". Till now we considered the true information only, but the "Information" Set contains all "possible" false information also. So - why does the false information exist?

    Cheers
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    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Prometheus
    Is the universe truly stochastic or is this simply a feature of perception? Can this be answered empirically?
    Bell's theorem - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    My knowledge of physics is poor. From this entry it seems the question can be, but has yet to be, empirically verified.

    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Prometheus
    speaking of the law of large numbers, the numbers 30-60 are often thrown about as some kind of vague cut-off point.
    Don't know about no 30-60.
    Law of large numbers - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    One of the problems with using terminology like deterministic and stochastic, is there is bias concerning their relevance to an anthropic sense of rationality.
    Even if we use massive numbers, since we are talking about sub-atomic stochastism for which the numbers will be extremely large in any anthropic scale, a regression to the mean will always be present. This is why i ask whether, even if stochastism exists at the quantum level, does this mean chemical/biological levels are stochastic? The law of large numbers would suggest that chemical levels would overwhelmingly follow determined paths, even if that determinism was a feature of probability.

    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil View Post
    Good article. It replicates the finding of Libet et al., but with fMRI.




    Quote Originally Posted by prasit View Post
    Buddha founded Buddhism, why is he irrelevant? Why do you advise to kill him? Is it evil to seek for happiness?
    'If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him,' is a well known Buddhist saying in the Chan (i think) tradition. But this is way off topic now, maybe we can pick it up elsewhere?
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    "Indeterminism does not confer freedom on us: I would feel that my freedom was impaired if I thought that a quantum mechanical trigger in my brain might cause me to leap into the garden and eat a slug." -J. J. C. Smart-

    As Prometheus has noted, stochastic systems tend to approach a mean.
    And it is well documented that deterministic systems can diverge. Chaos theory - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    I must respectfully disagree with Mr Smart's assesment.

    My reason for invoking indeterminism is to have present a mechanism of A or B as a consequent, as that is my current working definition of "choice".
    More later on Libet et al. Gotta go for now.
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    The law of large numbers would suggest that chemical levels would overwhelmingly follow determined paths, even if that determinism was a feature of probability.
    The law of large numbers cannot determine any single event at all. There is no such thing as "overwhelmingly" following "determined paths" - the paths are determined or they are not, period. If they are, there are no exceptions to the following of them.

    Since quantum level events can be amplified and organized immediately and indefinitely, to any scale (the human eye can detect the emission of one photon), we know for a fact that nothing in the universe is "determined" for even five minutes.

    Determinism based on imaginary chains of cause and effect is a shorthand conceptualization, useful at the human scale of time and space for ordinary life. Like a flat earth, or a tendency of heavy objects to fall "down", or the identification of mass with weight, or the natural slowing of all motion for no reason, or the ascription of distance and size to object relationships with converging lines, the creation of cause/effect sequences is an illusion we find all but necessary.

    Since we are in fact inventing them, we should pay attention to the contexts in which they make sense. For example: In no sense do quantum effects, the substrate upon which the patterns of the entire physical world are built, "cause" anything except what they directly affect. In no sense are quantum effects "determined" - they are not, according to our best theories, even predictable. Substrates in general do not cause patterns, and quantum effects are random in the first place. So the universe is not "determined" at its most basic level. That cuts the fallacy off at the root.
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    Ty, good post.

    It seems that humans intrinsically seek out cause and effect. It's interesting that we are built in a way that is perfect for short-term organic life but makes the universe counter-intuitive.
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    Predetermined, no, plausable in a given space and time while working with whats advailable yes. Put a man in a box for a period of time and eventually he will know that box inside and out. Dont put him in the box and he may never know the inside corners of that box or the craftmanship that made it, We do what we do cause we are what we are, and we are that out of advailable variables not predetermined destiney.

    Free Will, NO. Out of a choice of say A. B. C. D. how can one claim to have free will when the chocies are given, Most of us are not even capable of producing an original thought, Free will can occur when and only when the positions that can be tooken are not given.
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    Time is calculated in number would be far to much to understand as the particles that made the universe would be. Are these equal to the whole universe. Imagine the whole mass of the universe seperated in to numbers and those numbers would participate in to how old the universe is and the time it took to be created from the big bang. We can travel the universe and that would be such a task to be so far away from home so how would we get back to our home if planets are billios of miles away. I believe that like a road that takes us to an island we have a choice but not the same direction, if there were two of us traveling who would arrive at the destination first (the start of the universe first). I believe the universe to offer a route where both of us could arrive at the same time hence the information we have collected to understand more about the universe would be more interesting as we sat down and chose the idea as to how the universe was created, how each route got us there at the same time and the physical side of what we had to go through to arrive back home. So is there paralel universe that offeres us a choice where if we were to take a route we would sub-contionally contected but far away from each other. i hope so I would hate to alone in the middle of thee universe so far away from home and as some people mention if we lost ourselves to much we would end up a little lost in the mind. That's not a problem however because the choice and abilty to travel in pairs would be connected perhaps to others that have the courage, awareness, knowlegde and ability to join together and travel. It's a better choice to be connected in some way as we never know whats out there and if we found other living forms we would have to have the knowledge to overcome their bounderies, find trust and then perhaps wonder further into the universe. So back to numbers, the whole point of numbers could be that to travel togetehr a little at a time would give us more information on the length of time it took to create such a vast amount of space.

    How could we travel together? Well research is one good idea in way of books, internet, television, space study and travel. The we have to think of an idea how we can get up there to find if our reasearch fits the collated information that we have held in our archives.
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    Quote Originally Posted by iceaura View Post
    The law of large numbers cannot determine any single event at all.
    I didn't claim it did, sorry if i gave that impression.

    Quote Originally Posted by iceaura View Post
    There is no such thing as "overwhelmingly" following "determined paths" - the paths are determined or they are not, period. If they are, there are no exceptions to the following of them.
    I agree. But if single events, at the quantum level, are not determined then we would still get a probabilty distribution. Is this not how electron orbitals are understood? Even though an electron's position cannot be known for certain, the probobality of it being within a certain area, depending on the type of orbital, can be given.

    It would be helpful to me if we could keep quantum discussions to the electron as my knowledge of quantum mechanics is non-existent - if the electron is an acceptable model for the stochastic mechanisms you and giantevil are talking about.

    A genuine question here, i'd be interested to know the answer. I was told that to give a 100% certainty of an electron's probability distrubution we would have to include the entire universe. If electrons did not behave in a way in which their orbitals were predictable, and so had an equal chance of being anywhere in the entire universe, would matter as we know it not disintergrate?

    The electron probabilty distrubtion is akin to how i was referring to giantevil's interesting idea of using the law of large numbers to explain the emergence of determinsim (as opposed to it being axiomatic).

    Quote Originally Posted by iceaura View Post
    Since quantum level events can be amplified and organized immediately and indefinitely, to any scale (the human eye can detect the emission of one photon), we know for a fact that nothing in the universe is "determined" for even five minutes.
    I don't understand how you reached this conclusion. Can you explain the intermediate steps of this? Are you implying that when i see something there is a random chance that i will see a different colour for each photon? If so would the law of large numbers not mean i would see the same colour i did before, given that there are a large number of photons hitting my retina, the few randomly fluctuating photons being overwhelmed by the many photons behaving as predicted? What am i missing?


    Quote Originally Posted by iceaura View Post
    Determinism based on imaginary chains of cause and effect is a shorthand conceptualization, useful at the human scale of time and space for ordinary life. Like a flat earth, or a tendency of heavy objects to fall "down", or the identification of mass with weight, or the natural slowing of all motion for no reason, or the ascription of distance and size to object relationships with converging lines, the creation of cause/effect sequences is an illusion we find all but necessary.
    Interesting way of thinking about cause and effect. I've always been fascinated by the idea that causality cannot actually be proved with certainty.
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    I aint gonna give evidence in this thread, I have been warned about been over exagerated but I thought that this was the finest method to take a route to where the universe was created or was it created right where we stand. What Should I do about this, leave the forum and go home or re-build what I have written in the forum and make more sense, for me this isn't how I'm going to learn. I guess I'm a self supported super tropper, galaxy defender

    Is it wrong to have a joke >>> I think to have a little dig at someone is to nurture them, move them forward, perhaps away and them back again to find the evidence needed to support the forums archives. Can I joke around a little or would you like me to leave MODS?
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    Read my new theory. it fixes this problem..
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    Quote Originally Posted by prometheus
    The electron probabilty distrubtion is akin to how i was referring to giantevil's interesting idea of using the law of large numbers to explain the emergence of determinsim (as opposed to it being axiomatic).

    Originally Posted by iceaura
    Since quantum level events can be amplified and organized immediately and indefinitely, to any scale (the human eye can detect the emission of one photon), we know for a fact that nothing in the universe is "determined" for even five minutes.





    I don't understand how you reached this conclusion. - - - What am i missing?
    The fact that even quantum phenomena - which our best theories assure us is random, intrinsically and physically - can be individually detected and therefore potentially amplified in their individual influence to any scale at much higher levels of organization, means that events at those higher levels are not determined.

    We also have the various modes of indeterminacy emergent and thereafter intrinsic at successively higher levels of organization: Heisenberg uncertainty, chaos uncertainty, and whatever one wants to call the designed sensitivity of extremely complex systems such as the human brain and/or mind. But the quantum level event detection and reaction at the human mind level seemed a direct and very clear illustration.
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    If it was predetermined that tougher drinking/driving laws save lives then who are the individuals that have been saved? Can I truthfully say that I am alive today because of the new laws? Statistics will bear out that not as many people die as a result but there is no way to pinpoint the individuals who were predetermined to live. Does that mean the only thing predetermined is that new laws will cause fewer deaths and not save lives at all? Or will the new laws cause unknown individuals to survive another day?

    There seems to be some kind of grey area here. It's as if the predetermined laws cause more than one effect, both of which are similar in nature, but are like two different probabilities. The effects are known but exactly who are affected is not....does that sound right? Can someone make sense of this for me?
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    Quote Originally Posted by iceaura View Post
    The fact that even quantum phenomena - which our best theories assure us is random, intrinsically and physically - can be individually detected and therefore potentially amplified in their individual influence to any scale at much higher levels of organization, means that events at those higher levels are not determined.
    Even if quantum phenomena are random this does not necessarily mean that they become amplified to higher levels of organisation. The random nature of the photon you discussed would mean we saw random colours all the time, but this does not happen.

    Quote Originally Posted by iceaura View Post
    We also have the various modes of indeterminacy emergent and thereafter intrinsic at successively higher levels of organization: Heisenberg uncertainty, chaos uncertainty, and whatever one wants to call the designed sensitivity of extremely complex systems such as the human brain and/or mind. But the quantum level event detection and reaction at the human mind level seemed a direct and very clear illustration.
    Chaos theory actually assumes determinism and gives a mathematical model of how sensitive dependence on initial conditions can result in unpredictable, yet determined, systems. The Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle seems to be the only solid argument for indeterminism, and even though Bell's theorem has nearly negated the hidden variables alternative, it is not proved. You have to admit, your certainty in uncertainty is a little ironic.
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheBiologista View Post
    Determinism isn't really a novel idea. I wouldn't be surprised if many physicists subscribed to a similar outlook- of a universe that is hypothetically, if not always practically, predictable as a whole. As you've presented the idea, it is just that- an idea. What makes this an hypothesis?

    Can you suggest practical way (even if they're beyond us technologically), that we might test this? What predictions about the behaviour of the universe does such an hypothesis make that would not be found in a non-deterministic universe?
    In a deterministic universe... the beter somptin is understood... the mor predictable it woud be... an that woudnt hold true if the universe was not deterministic.!!!
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    The Universe is deterministic, and this has been scientifically verified. The guy who figured it out was a clever dude, though it all seems pretty obvious when you really think about it. Anyway, you might want to check out some of his work; his wikipedia page is here.

    Quantum indeterminism has not been experimentally verified, unless you count thought experiments like the cat in the box. It is a matter of interpretation only, and there are many interpretations and methodologies in quantum physics, the most sensible of which is "Shut up and calculate!". I really cannot stress this enough; quantum physicists are essentially applied mathematicians, brilliant mathematicians, sure, but nevertheless a talent for mathematics in no way implies a good mind for visualising the ethereal; I honestly wouldn't trust their interpretation of the data if my life depended on it, they really should just shut up and calculate, like Feynman said, and leave the interpretation to the lateral thinking Einstein's of this world.

    Anyway, even if quantum indeterminism is real, its effects would surely cancel out at the macro-level, and thus there is no indeterminism anywhere beyond the arena of the subatomic, if at all. And certainly, whatever the case down there may be, from atoms upwards we're in purely deterministic territory. Everything that has happened in the Universe (or at the very least on any scale larger than the sub-atomic) since cosmic inflation (assuming of course that cosmic inflation really did happen) has been 100% determined and was thus completely inevitable right there and then, 13.7 billion years ago.

    We do not have free will, sorry.
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    While I enjoy your post and opinions they are no more substantiated than those of whom you criticize. Free will is also contextual and entirely possible within bounds. Sure you are not free to fly but that does not mean you have no free will. Think out the metaphor or just respond haphazardly. Again, I don't disrespect you but your comments seem a little expansive without proper backing.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scientits View Post
    The Universe is deterministic, and this has been scientifically verified. The guy who figured it out was a clever dude, though it all seems pretty obvious when you really think about it. Anyway, you might want to check out some of his work; his wikipedia page is here.
    We have all passed a lot of water since then. Newton wasn't right about everything.

    Quantum indeterminism has not been experimentally verified
    Yes it has. http://www.upscale.utoronto.ca/PVB/H...lsTheorem.html

    Anyway, even if quantum indeterminism is real, its effects would surely cancel out at the macro-level
    Prove it.

    We do not have free will, sorry.
    Maybe. But it doesn't really matter. We might as well carry on as if we do.
    Last edited by Strange; November 1st, 2011 at 02:07 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scientits View Post
    We do not have free will, sorry.
    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    Maybe. But it doesn't really matter.
    To me it maters because i enjoy knowin how thangs actualy work... an i see no evidence that will is free (uninfluenced).!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    We might as well carry on as if we do.
    Do you agree thats irrelevent as to whether will is free or not.???
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    Quote Originally Posted by cluelusshusbund View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    We might as well carry on as if we do.
    Do you agree thats irrelevent as to whether will is free or not.???
    I do. It seems that the issue of free will is undecidable, so we might as well assume we have it (or don't, if that fits your worldview better) and then carry on as normal.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    It seems that the issue of free will is undecidable, so we might as well assume we have it (or don't, if that fits your worldview better) and then carry on as normal.
    My wordview is based on evidence... an i dont see evidence that free will OR flyin pigs exist... so i thank the logical position is to cary on as if they dont... do you disagree wit that.???
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    Even if quantum phenomena are random this does not necessarily mean that they become amplified to higher levels of organisation.
    The observation that they are so amplified - you can see them, which involves hundreds of eye and brain cells (far from the quantum level of the event) - is made every day.

    even if The random nature of the photon you discussed would mean we saw random colours all the time, but this does not happen.
    Why? Clearly the response is moderated and channeled by the larger patterns of higher levels of response. The feedback of levels of event and response is built in to the system - prevents deterministic interpretation.

    Quantum indeterminism has not been experimentally verified,
    Bell's Theorem has been solidly checked out. So have a couple of other manifestations.
    Anyway, even if quantum indeterminism is real, its effects would surely cancel out at the macro-level
    They don't, necessarily. That's a matter of observation (again, visible photons) and solid theory - chaos theory, etc.
    My wordview is based on evidence..
    There is no evidence of cause and effect, in the real world. What theory and observation both establish is greater or lesser probability of sequence.
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    Quote Originally Posted by cluelusshusbund View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    It seems that the issue of free will is undecidable, so we might as well assume we have it (or don't, if that fits your worldview better) and then carry on as normal.
    My wordview is based on evidence... an i dont see evidence that free will [uninfluenced choise] OR flyin pigs exist... so i thank the logical position is to cary on as if they dont... do you disagree wit that.???
    Quote Originally Posted by iceaura View Post
    cluelusshusbund
    My wordview is based on evidence..
    There is no evidence of cause and effect, in the real world. What theory and observation both establish is greater or lesser probability of sequence.
    The context of my statment was in reference to "free-will"... ie... do you agree wit my complete (an in context) statment (below).???

    "My wordview is based on evidence... an i dont see evidence that free will [uninfluenced choise] OR flyin pigs exist... so i thank the logical position is to cary on as if they dont.!!!"
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    If the bible can be used as a response, "Time and chance happen to all men." If not .. take it out.
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    Everything predetermined from the start of time?
    If the start of time could not be predetermined then when did the predeterminations take place? Predetermining would need to be predetermined would it not? But starting at zero means it would have had to taken place or be set prior to the start. Yet how can that be?
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    Quote Originally Posted by iceaura View Post
    Even if quantum phenomena are random this does not necessarily mean that they become amplified to higher levels of organisation.
    The observation that they are so amplified - you can see them, which involves hundreds of eye and brain cells (far from the quantum level of the event) - is made every day.
    Quote Originally Posted by iceaura View Post
    even if The random nature of the photon you discussed would mean we saw random colours all the time, but this does not happen.
    Why? Clearly the response is moderated and channeled by the larger patterns of higher levels of response. The feedback of levels of event and response is built in to the system - prevents deterministic interpretation.
    I still have no idea what you're talking about, and i'm not sure it's my fault. Can you provide a link or reference to somewhere that describes this idea in detail?

    Quote Originally Posted by iceaura View Post
    Quantum indeterminism has not been experimentally verified,
    Bell's Theorem has been solidly checked out. So have a couple of other manifestations.
    Again, my knowledge of physics is paltry, but i've the growing suspicion that other's understanding of physics is similarly limited. This wikipedia page suggests that Bell's theorem is incomplete Bell's theorem - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia : '... none of the tests of the theorem performed to date has fulfilled the requisite conditions implicit in the theorem. Accordingly, none of the results are totally conclusive.' If wikipedia is wrong please direct me to a link stating so, or perhaps some of the other manifestations to which you allude.

    Quote Originally Posted by iceaura View Post
    Anyway, even if quantum indeterminism is real, its effects would surely cancel out at the macro-level
    They don't, necessarily. That's a matter of observation (again, visible photons) and solid theory - chaos theory, etc.
    Chaos theory actually assumes determinism and gives a mathematical model of how sensitive dependence on initial conditions can result in unpredictable, yet determined, systems. From a wikipedia page: Chaos theory - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia '...happens even though these systems are deterministic, meaning that their future behavior is fully determined by their initial conditions, with no random elements involved'.

    Quote Originally Posted by iceaura View Post
    There is no evidence of cause and effect, in the real world. What theory and observation both establish is greater or lesser probability of sequence.
    It is not that there is no evidence of cause and effect but rather there can be no such evidence: Causal Processes (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy). In which case causality cannot be rejected any more that it can be accepted on empirical grounds.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prometheus View Post

    Even if quantum phenomena are random this does not necessarily mean that they become amplified to higher levels of organisation. The random nature of the photon you discussed would mean we saw random colours all the time, but this does not happen.
    As an example of how quantum phenomena can be amplified to be observed macroscopically, consider radioactive decay. Radioactive decay is a random process. An atom of a radioactive isotope has some finite probability of decaying within some period of time. It could go now, or wait another thousand years to decay.

    We can use this probability to determine a half-life and predict the number of disintegrations that would be detected by a Geiger counter placed near a sample of a certain amount of the element. With a large amount, our meter will register a more or less continuous reading. If we only have a small number of atoms, our counter may click every few seconds or so, at uneven intervals, whenever one of the atoms decides to decay.

    One may imagine how this randomness could affect things on a macroscopic scale. If you have an atom of radioactive material near you (as everybody does), it may or may not disintegrate, ionizing the materials of a particular cell in your body. Thus you may or may not experience a cell mutation that causes a cancer. It would be totally random luck.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prometheus
    I still have no idea what you're talking about, and i'm not sure it's my fault. Can you provide a link or reference to somewhere that describes this idea in detail?
    It's already described in detail, right here. It's a very simple observation: quantum events such as the releases of photons and other radiation - which are not determined unless modern physics is totally wrong in some as yet undescribed way - influence your brain. So your brain is not determined, in its behavior. Whether the ingested radiation from Fukushima causes cancer in some Japanese persons brain, for example, is not determined. Neither is the effect of seeing flashes of light from crunched Wintergreen candy in a dark closet on a child's future memories. Examples are legion.

    Whatever it is that enforces consistency on your thoughts, it isn't some imaginary chain of determined causes and effects from atoms on up. There is no such chain.

    btw, re Bell's Theorem: http://www.upscale.utoronto.ca/PVB/H...lsTheorem.html

    Chaos theory actually assumes determinism and gives a mathematical model of how sensitive dependence on initial conditions can result in unpredictable, yet determined, systems
    No, chaos theory does not assume real physical determinism - it posits determined effect from given cause, as a part of the model not the reality, and shows how that assumption does not necessarily permit prediction of real physical outcome even in a presumed determinate system - the strongest possible situation for prediction.

    So assuming determinism does not give you prediction, does not produce a knowable physical future even in theory.
    Last edited by iceaura; November 4th, 2011 at 08:14 PM.
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    chaos theory does not assume real physical determinism
    Actually it does. Disappointed you still haven't done a bit of reading since the last time this subject came up. (shrugs)
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    Quote Originally Posted by lynx
    chaos theory does not assume real physical determinism

    Actually it does.
    No, it doesn't. You are confusing map and territory. It's a mathematical theory and model - the assumptions of its application to physical reality can vary. It's quite possible to employ it in situations involving the Uncertainty Principle, or QED, or other sources of indeterminacy.

    One major conclusion we can draw from it, with reference to mental patterns, is that to the extent they are predictable they are "caused" by higher level pattern influence - because we don't see chaotically amplified haywire from Uncertain or Quantum brain events. The Chaos amplification is guided, damped, controlled, from the top down. So at least once in a while it is just as accurate to say neuron firings are "caused" by thoughts, as the reverse.
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    [QUOTE=iceaura;291000]
    Quote Originally Posted by lynx
    So at least once in a while it is just as accurate to say neuron firings are "caused" by thoughts, as the reverse.
    THIS is interesting! And where do those thoughts come from? From "Above" perhaps.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    chaos theory does not assume real physical determinism
    Actually it does. Disappointed you still haven't done a bit of reading since the last time this subject came up. (shrugs)
    I think, Lynx_Fox, and I say this respectfully, that your words "Actually it does" would be better if written "Actually it can and sometimes (or often) does." Applying ironclad law to observations stifles science. The clearest example is Aristarchus's exile, that event hindering the development of cosmolgy for 1,800 years until the sun truly was found to be the centre of our solar system, and not the earth which was the 'pbserved' law of that age. Had Aristarchus not been exiled man could possibly have visited other galaxies by the time you and I arrived on earth.
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    Free Will cannot be answered until a majority of people agree on the definition of Free Will by given it its boundary limits of how it should be defined.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barbi View Post
    Free Will cannot be answered until a majority of people agree on the definition of Free Will by given it its boundary limits of how it should be defined.
    My definition is "Uninfluenced choise"... what is your's.???
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    Quote Originally Posted by cluelusshusbund View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Barbi View Post
    Free Will cannot be answered until a majority of people agree on the definition of Free Will by given it its boundary limits of how it should be defined.
    My definition is "Uninfluenced choise"... what is your's.???
    We are influenced from the moment of conception. According to some views of Creator God as well as genetics we are influenced before conception.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aristarchus in Exile View Post
    We are influenced from the moment of conception. According to some views of Creator God as well as genetics we are influenced before conception.
    Genetics alone rules out the posibility of free will.!!!
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    Another view of free will is that it would be necessary for evolution since a few individuals would get bored of doing the same repetitive pattern day in and day out. Trying a new food source seems to be a good indicator for changes to occur in the offspring over time where they no longer resemble the first generation that ate the new food source.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aristarchus in Exile View Post
    THIS is interesting! And where do those thoughts come from? From "Above" perhaps.
    It's from feedbacks within the brain. No need to get invoke the supernatural, if that was your intention.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Aristarchus in Exile View Post
    THIS is interesting! And where do those thoughts come from? From "Above" perhaps.
    It's from feedbacks within the brain. No need to get invoke the supernatural, if that was your intention.
    Feedback within the brain? Ah, so you're a neurologist then? Perhaps you are acquaintance with my good friend Charlene who is a PHD in brain chemistry but who believes in the supernatural. One other thing, where does the brain get its input? Merely from the physical senses? No. Even a dog wagging its tail generates electrical waves which can reach the moon, and the brain picks up electrical signals .. note how the young lady ahead of you turns around and looks at you when you are admiring her from behind.
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    The inevitable is so certainly in store that any protest would be in vain. Yet, in hopes that all does not become tragedy, as true as all this might be, we should neverthelessl remain in disbelief.
    "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense." --Buddha (563BC-483BC)
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    [QUOTE=Aristarchus in Exile;295857]
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Perhaps you are acquaintance with my good friend Charlene who is a PHD in brain chemistry but who believes in the supernatural.
    Perhaps you should be acquainted with the logistic fallacy of switch and baiting arguments. Charlene might will believe in the supernatural, but she also knows that there's lots of feedback that goes in our brains.


    Where does the brain get its input? Merely from the physical senses? No.
    There's zero empirical evidence that the brain gets input from anything other than the brain, body or senses. You also shouldn't get confused by the large amount of sub conscience perceptions through our senses, that gets filtered out so our conscience minds can make sense of it. Non of it requires, or really even suggest anything supernatural is going on.
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    [QUOTE=Lynx_Fox;295913]
    Quote Originally Posted by Aristarchus in Exile View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Perhaps you are acquaintance with my good friend Charlene who is a PHD in brain chemistry but who believes in the supernatural.
    Perhaps you should be acquainted with the logistic fallacy of switch and baiting arguments. Charlene might will believe in the supernatural, but she also knows that there's lots of feedback that goes in our brains.


    Where does the brain get its input? Merely from the physical senses? No.
    There's zero empirical evidence that the brain gets input from anything other than the brain, body or senses. You also shouldn't get confused by the large amount of sub conscience perceptions through our senses, that gets filtered out so our conscience minds can make sense of it. Non of it requires, or really even suggest anything supernatural is going on.
    I am totally unfamiliar with switch and baiting arguments. I speak as simply and plainly as possible.
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