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Thread: The Idea of God is not Topical Henceforth

  1. #1 The Idea of God is not Topical Henceforth 
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    Well educated intellectual people, especially scientists, at all times demonstrate considerably smaller adherence of religiosity, than the others. However and now there are still believers of idea of the God in scientific medium. If to exclude from their number of those who feels painful requirement for external protection and a support by virtue of heavy living circumstances there are those who comes to idea of the God as a result of amazement concerning finesse of world around and absence of the answer to a problem: as all this the surprising diversification of subjects and entities in principle could be formed and as it can sustain the quasistable condition and demonstrate development.

    The common sense suggests, that for explanation of observable raging life it is necessary to admit, that each separate subject, each organism, each social unit and even a separate computer program product should contain the special internal causative engine, a source of a local determinism which maintains specific autonomous internal life in it.

    The conventional concept of determinism for today does not suppose existence of such sources. In it scandalous weakness of this concept. Not finding a required causative source within the framework of philosophy, people are compelled to address there, where always in readiness a number of exotic, exciting fancy of irrational causative sources that is in religion and mysticism.

    Today the situation can be considerably rectified. Recently published concept Ring Determinism discovers a required internal causative source by the way a closed on itself plot of customary causal chain, a selfcontained causative circuit which, it turned out, is contained in entrails of each separate natural formation.
    This selfcontained causative circuit just is that ontological base due to which each separate natural formation finds out and saves the exclusive individuality, asserts itself in the capacity of “ causa sui ” – the cause of itself.



    Fig. 1. A diagram of the causal chain:

    A) A starting fragment of linear causal chain;
    B) The closed on itself plot of the causal chain.


    Internal local causative action, continuously circulating inside a separate body, being transmitted in succession from an element to an element, ensures its systemic wholeness, synergetic wholeness in operation of its elements and subsystems, phenomenon of “emergence”, special internal policy, resistance to external actions, aggression directed to outside, egoism, an egocentricity, a self-preservation, self-organization and, at last, self-development.

    One of principled conclusions of a ring determinism will be, that under the supervisory control of the internal cause continuously circulating inside a body and under continuous pressure on the part of external factors just and there is a miracle of the self-development, resulting in to originating of observable diversification of surprising properties of subjects, organisms, social units, human products and other.

    The local causative circuit, is once randomly or designedly become closed and then finding out ability to the long-lived quasistable self-maintenance, self-resumption, or, in an event of dynamically developing systems, the determining vortex, is that high-power engine which creates, saves and induces flock of alive and nonliving natural formations to development.

    So that educated people can to sigh with relief now: for them rather weighty rational argument against idea of creationism has appeared and necessity to appeal to irrational imaginations has vanished.


    It is time to put things in order in philosophy
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  3. #2 OHHHH! 
    Forum Freshman The_Risen_Orion's Avatar
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    ohhh!


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    Well the first question that occured to me is whether this was intended seriously or as a joke for it almost seemed like a parody.

    But checking out the link I think it may be serious.

    I which case I can at least say that I have also proposed a similar non standard idea of causality ("self-causality") as a solution to the paradoxes involved in the idea of freewill, however I certainly hope that I have both expressed and justified my ideas better than this.

    So in that vein let me include here an attempt at my definition of freewill.

    Freewill is an inherent but quantitative (more-and-less rather than either-or) characteristic of all living things which enables them to choose between one or more possible responses (actions, thoughts or changes of structure) to the environment in a manner that finds no deterministic cause in either external nor internal influences, but causation is completed instead by what the living organism becomes as it peceives itself to be the ultimate cause of its own response.

    I know this may seem complicated, but there is no other way, that I can see, for freewill to resolve the paradoxes involved. One of the difficulties in this definition is that it violates time-ordered causality, because cause rather than preceding effect, originates in the same event as the effect. This is similar in some ways to Aristotles idea of final causality. Yet this definition ultimately derives not from a necessity for the solution of theological puzzles but from the basic experiences of being human as follows.

    Observation 1: We experience/perceive the existence of a self to which we attribute the cause of our actions and thoughts.

    Observation 2: When we make a conscious deliberative choice (one that requires careful consideration) we choose the reasons for our eventual decision.

    Observation 3: Our choices seem to play a significant role in making us who and what we are.
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

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    Am I missing your point entirely if I say that an extension of your concept, Mitchell, could be that the evolution of intelligence and consciousness, are steps en route to ever more complex emergent properties, leading ultimately to God?

    Or, am I talking bollocks?
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  6. #5  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ophiolite
    Am I missing your point entirely if I say that an extension of your concept, Mitchell, could be that the evolution of intelligence and consciousness, are steps en route to ever more complex emergent properties, leading ultimately to God?

    Or, am I talking bollocks?
    To know if you are missing the point I would have to hear a bit more of your thoughts, for I do not know for sure if you are misunderstanding something or merely racing forward along a chain of implications to come to such a startling conclusion.

    I do think this definition of free will is tied to the idea of life being able to become more than it is, which means that life has some sort of infinite potential. And in that sense, yes, you could say that this is theoretically possible.

    I do not think that life can necessarily do this on its own even with an infinite amount of time and an infinite number of earths, because there is the question of how the increase of life progresses on its own with time and also what the landscape of possibilites is like enroute to that particular goal.

    With only a single earth even assuming an accelerating rate of progression there are other difficulties because of the existence of evolutionary dead ends, of which intellegent species like the human race may very well be an example, due to a possible propensity for self destruction or even a propensity for completely destroying the biosphere.

    As you well know I think it is the participation of God in process that makes it truly possible and therefore I envision exactly that sort of future for man in an eternal relationship with God. But then I also don't envision this as a physical process. For I see the physical world as only a womb neccessary to give life its birth but ultimately being transcended by forms of life (humans) which no longer need it. ...yada yada yada... ...something like Christianity.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Freewill is an inherent but quantitative (more-and-less rather than either-or) characteristic of all living things which enables them to choose between one or more possible responses (actions, thoughts or changes of structure) to the environment in a manner that finds no deterministic cause in either external nor internal influences, but causation is completed instead by what the living organism becomes as it peceives itself to be the ultimate cause of its own response.
    Your definition of freewill is quite valid, however it is a sight at a problem only from within the person. More full to clear up a situation, it is necessary to see at it outside. How our behaviour for the external spectator looks?

    The person reacts to external stimuli, commits the operations under an external influence. But it not completely determines his behaviour. The person commits also the singular operations which are not having external stimulants. It should reconcile the external spectator in an output about existence of the singular mysterious intrinsic causal source. It is possible to term it a sight on free will on the part of the external spectator. Two sights – from within and outside – give the complete performance about a problem.
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  8. #7 Why do we need free will at all? 
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    I don't see what's wrong with with admiting that our behaviour is totally determined by physical forces, though we can never completely know what they are. It takes a mental twist to realize that your will is completely synonymous with the "will" of the universe (unfolding physical processes) but its the only way it all makes any sense to me!
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  9. #8 Re: Why do we need free will at all? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaxEntropy
    I don't see what's wrong with with admiting that our behaviour is totally determined by physical forces, though we can never completely know what they are. It takes a mental twist to realize that your will is completely synonymous with the "will" of the universe (unfolding physical processes) but its the only way it all makes any sense to me!
    The problem is that this philosophy does not match the human experience of reality. Your philosophy sounds logical and seems reasonable, but only from an objective perspective. But human beings do not experience their existence objectively but subjectively and therefore it is unreasonable. The objective point of view is really a rational abstraction.

    Furthermore, we do not experience all events as caused by self but only particular events and this experience separates the self from the universe. The only "will" which we experience is the will of self. A "will of the universe" can only be imagined.

    Your philosophy can only make sense by objectifying yourself, which is ultimately a categorical denial of self, because the self is subjective. It is true that some religions actually seek this denial of self but such religions ultimately see everything as illusion (and seek to escape it) and I think this is the logical conclusion for to deny that which is most immediately real, the self, you must ultimately deny the reality of everything. But in that case your effort to make sense of things has left you no sense of things at all.

    Therefore, I must see philosophies such as this to be pure pretense. In adopting such a philosophy, one pretends to be other than what one is. You pretend to be the abstraction and ignore the immediate experience. It may provide a neatly rational system of thought, which is simple to comprehend, but it is divorced from ones personal reality.

    If you find what I am saying difficult to understand, I reccomend reading some existentialist literature.
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    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lonely_Warrior
    Your definition of freewill is quite valid, however it is a sight at a problem only from within the person. More full to clear up a situation, it is necessary to see at it outside. How our behaviour for the external spectator looks?

    The person reacts to external stimuli, commits the operations under an external influence. But it not completely determines his behaviour. The person commits also the singular operations which are not having external stimulants. It should reconcile the external spectator in an output about existence of the singular mysterious intrinsic causal source. It is possible to term it a sight on free will on the part of the external spectator. Two sights – from within and outside – give the complete performance about a problem.
    Like your first post this is very difficult to understand. Perhaps it is your English or perhaps it is a difference in literary/philosophical background. So in preface to each of my responses I will restate what you say as I understand it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lonely_Warrior
    Your definition of freewill is quite valid, however it is a sight at a problem only from within the person. More full to clear up a situation, it is necessary to see at it outside. How our behaviour for the external spectator looks?
    You say that my definition of freewill needs to clarify what is occuring from an objective perspective.

    My definition derives entirely from the subjective experience of human existence. Since freewill is not objectively observable I do not see what basis an objective description could have. I mean we can look at the objective description of this action of a person that we call freewill, but all we can see is a lack of causality, which is sometimes interpreted as merely random.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lonely_Warrior
    The person reacts to external stimuli, commits the operations under an external influence. But it not completely determines his behaviour. The person commits also the singular operations which are not having external stimulants.
    A person experiences external influences on his behavior but his behavior is not determined by them, and even exhibits behavior where there is no external influences at all.

    True, but the division between internal and external is a relative thing. If behavior is determined by the sum of what you call external and internal, then you have a problem when you consider where what you call internal came from. If the internal is not always existing and uncaused then it is ultimately a product of what is external, and in that case behavior is ultimately determined by what is external, which is no freewill at all.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lonely_Warrior
    It should reconcile the external spectator in an output about existence of the singular mysterious intrinsic causal source. It is possible to term it a sight on free will on the part of the external spectator. Two sights – from within and outside – give the complete performance about a problem.
    A complete definition of freewill should include both subjective and objective descriptions and then reconcile them. It must reconcile what is seen by the external spectator with what a person experiences in the action of his own free will.

    The truly objective description is a purely scientific one. I see this as being done on a simple but essential level in the mathematical model known as bifurcation in the science of chaotic dynamics. This is a phenomenon known to occur in nonlinear systems which a living organism is the most complex of examples. Nonlinear systems amplify small perturbations such that only a specification of initial conditions to an infinite degree of precision can allow its future behavior to be mathematically determined. This was proven mathematically by Illya Prigogine. The consequence is that Schrodinger's argument that quantum indeterminacy has no relevance to the behavior of living organisms has been invalidated. It is known that quantum objects exist in indeterminate states and when there is an interaction so that the behavior of a very large number of particles depends on the state of the quantum object, it causes this indeterminate state to collapse, changing its state to one with a definite value. This is what occurs in measurement and is commonly called a wave collapse. The failure of Bell's inequality shows that there are no determinative causes for the result of this collapse in the locally realistic worldview that is accepted in physics.

    So the result is just as I said, which is that, from a truly objective perspective, which must be a scientific one, all we can see is a lack of causality which can be interpreted either as completely random or as pointing to an aspect of reality which is not objectively observable.
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  11. #10 Re: Why do we need free will at all? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain

    The problem is that this philosophy does not match the human experience of reality. Your philosophy sounds logical and seems reasonable, but only from an objective perspective. But human beings do not experience their existence objectively but subjectively and therefore it is unreasonable. The objective point of view is really a rational abstraction.
    agreed.

    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Furthermore, we do not experience all events as caused by self but only particular events and this experience separates the self from the universe. The only "will" which we experience is the will of self. A "will of the universe" can only be imagined.
    I believe the self too is an abstraction.

    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Your philosophy can only make sense by objectifying yourself, which is ultimately a categorical denial of self, because the self is subjective.
    ...

    ...but it is divorced from ones personal reality.
    Good stuff! I understand how you could reach those conclusions about my philosophy because I really didn't give enough information in my original post, but in fact, they aren't true about me. Basically, I agree with you about rational abstraction being limited...In fact, if I accept a materialist rational veiwpoint, I am drawn to conclude that all my rational thoughts are just approximations of reality reprsented in my brain, thereby showing them to be incomplete, even my concepts about the brain itself!

    So my philosphy recognizes this. Basically I embrace Buber's ideas about the duality of the "I and it" (objectivism) and the "I and Thou" (subjective, interpersonalism). I think our mode of existence is dual. The I/it sees the objective side of all of reality, but is incomplete. Yet we also experience a more primal version of reality, the subjective human experience you noted which Buber calls the I/thou. But the point is, they are both two attributes of the same thing. For instance, you can take a broad statistical idea like entropy, and use it to successfully model large amounts of humans over large amounts of time...Reliable things like population growth and so forth can be modeled. Yet this objective model says nothing of the human experiences of the same thing, which involve falling in love, having sex, loving your kids, etc. So the SAME phenomenon which is objectively experienced in our model as entropy (or whatever statistical phenomenon), is subjectively experienced by the actors in the model as "love" (or whatever subjective experiences drove them). And its like that for everything, including the unfolding of physical or emotional processes in our mind; our perceptions are dual, but the unknowable reality we perceive is one.

    So taking this back to my original post, I can clarify: What I was asking is, why can't we acknowledge that what our limited objective and subjective perceptions are dual, but the reality they represent is one?
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  12. #11 Re: Why do we need free will at all? 
    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaxEntropy
    I understand how you could reach those conclusions about my philosophy because I really didn't give enough information in my original post, but in fact, they aren't true about me.
    Well I was not really speaking about you or your philosophy (that was just a figure of speech), I was speaking about the ideas presented in your post.

    Quote Originally Posted by MaxEntropy
    I believe the self too is an abstraction.
    I do not. One may have a concept of self that is an abstraction, but the self is also an immediate experience that is always there. It is there in everything we think and do. It is inescapable. This is what it means to say that the primal human experience is subjective.

    Quote Originally Posted by MaxEntropy
    And its like that for everything, including the unfolding of physical or emotional processes in our mind; our perceptions are dual, but the unknowable reality we perceive is one.
    Sure, reality is one, but that does not mean that all of it objectively observable, in which case these two aspects of our perceptions are not seeing the same thing at all.

    This reminds me of the advent of Chaos science. Scientists had long ago gotten into the habit of dealing with the unsolvable nonlinear equations governing the behavior of things with linear approximations. This process led them to develop a world view where everything seemed to be within their grasp to predict and control. Then in the pursuit of this goal they discovered that nonlinear equations had properties that were not shared by the linear ones and that all their linear approximations had misled them about the fundamental character of the world around them.

    This abstract we call the physical world constructed from what is objectively observable and measurable has misled us in the same way. It has led us to this vision of a reality determined by mathematical equations. But all we have to do is look at our subjective experience of reality to see that this vision is not reality at all. It should be perfectly plain (and it is to most people) that not everything which is real is objectively observable.

    Quote Originally Posted by MaxEntropy
    So taking this back to my original post, I can clarify: What I was asking is, why can't we acknowledge that what our limited objective and subjective perceptions are dual, but the reality they represent is one?
    So perhaps the answer to this is now plain. We cannot do so because what is objectively observable is not the sum total of reality. Even when we pursue this abstractly constructed reality in physics it ultimately tells us in quantum physics that it cannot be complete.

    We can choose to believe whatever we want, but why deny the reality of our immediate subjective experience in favor of an abstractions? Why insist that our actions are determined by external "physical forces", when our immediate experience is that we are reponsible for them ourselves? Your suggestion that these could be dual aspects of the same thing will not work because of the mechanical and deterministic naure of the these physical laws. These physical laws are not the origin of anything. They only transmit an inevitable progression of causality from some other source. Therefore to say that our actions are determined by physical laws is really to say nothing about the real cause of them at all. So we either follow the progression of causality to nowhere or we are lead back to the objectively unobservable self.
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

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  13. #12 Re: Why do we need free will at all? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    I do not. One may have a concept of self that is an abstraction, but the self is also an immediate experience that is always there. It is there in everything we think and do. It is inescapable. This is what it means to say that the primal human experience is subjective.
    Yeah, I was thinking about that after I wrote you last night. There is clearly a percieved self, which is flexible...for instance regarding will: An occultist or Shaman may see events outside his body has being a product of his will (like rain) on the other hand an addicted smoker may see events he does himself (like smoking) as against his 'will'...So what is 'self' is a matter of perception. But ultimately this presupposes a perciever, to percieve these selves. Try as I might, I am unable to percieve my internal perciever. If I sit down in a dark room and try, I tend to see things which seem more mystical than anything else, and therefore its difficult to reason about or discuss it.

    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    This abstract we call the physical world constructed from what is objectively observable and measurable has misled us in the same way. It has led us to this vision of a reality determined by mathematical equations. But all we have to do is look at our subjective experience of reality to see that this vision is not reality at all. It should be perfectly plain (and it is to most people) that not everything which is real is objectively observable.
    I agree, somewhat. NOTHING can really describe love but LOVE. You just have to feel it to really know it. Also, the poet comes closer, then the mathematician can stand back and measure things like population growth, lower crime rates, and things that maybe had to do with it. But I do believe its all one thing, the subjective experience is the most direct, primal, but also undefined. However, I do look around reality and see mathematical equations all around me. The way my bike accellerates, the way a plant grows as a series of iterative equations. This is entirely separate from the beauty of the rose, but they are different experiences of the same thing: The reality of the rose is like a lake...Our subjective experience is like a cup that draws water from it, our objective like a net that draws other things from it. But the source of both is the same.


    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    So perhaps the answer to this is now plain. We cannot do so because what is objectively observable is not the sum total of reality. Even when we pursue this abstractly constructed reality in physics it ultimately tells us in quantum physics that it cannot be complete.
    Yeah, I think that's really important to all this. Quantum mechanics relies on statistical models because at a certain level of smallness you can't give a deterministic explanation. (Thus annoying Einstein: "God does not pla dice") The important thing about statistical models is that they are admittedly incomplete. For instance, I can tell you objectively about "bus entropy", which I have observed while taking the bus: people spread out as much as they can on a bus, its incredibly improbable for strangers to all get on a bus and pack the left side seats while leaving the right side empy. But this isn't deterministic: You can easily get 25 freinds to get on a bus and provide a counter example, it just happens very very rarely. So "bus entropy" is an idea you can bank on (its been observed under other names by social scientists) and its an objective idea describing human behavior...But its not deterministic, it doesn't effect free will. You can clearly see the subjective side of "bus entropy", which is the experience of respect for other riders, and the desire to give them space, and have space yourself...But you are also free to act against those feelings.


    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    We can choose to believe whatever we want, but why deny the reality of our immediate subjective experience in favor of an abstractions? Why insist that our actions are determined by external "physical forces", when our immediate experience is that we are reponsible for them ourselves?
    We shouldn't deny the subjective, but we also shouldn't deny the objective. When you get on a bus and take an empty seat instead of sitting on some old lady's lap, you are acting out of subjective common decency and respect, but you are also acting in accordance with the objective physical law of "bus entropy"....And everything is like that. Our subjective emotions drive us to act in accordance with observable physical laws.


    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Your suggestion that these could be dual aspects of the same thing will not work because of the mechanical and deterministic naure of the these physical laws. These physical laws are not the origin of anything. They only transmit an inevitable progression of causality from some other source. Therefore to say that our actions are determined by physical laws is really to say nothing about the real cause of them at all. So we either follow the progression of causality to nowhere or we are lead back to the objectively unobservable self.
    Well, first of all, if I said our actions were determined by physical laws, that wasn't really complete. I should have said our actions act in accordance with laws. But the real thing here is about determinism. No deterministic law can predict our behaviour, and this is because determinism is screwed, because it can't admit incompleteness of knowledge. However, a lot of great objective models can admit incompleteness, and they are damn good models: statistical mechanics, quantum mechanics, etc. These all operate with an acceptance of limits on what we can know. When we can accept these limitations, we can make probabalistic observations of our behaviour like "bus entropy", which is something marketing and advertising people do all the time in market research.

    But, as you say, we do come back to the nature of the unobservable self, and I can't really say anthing about it at all...Except that maybe in it, not in our objective or subjective models, resides the most pure and true direct experience of our reality.
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  14. #13  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaxEntropy
    There is clearly a percieved self, which is flexible...for instance regarding will: An occultist or Shaman may see events outside his body has being a product of his will (like rain) on the other hand an addicted smoker may see events he does himself (like smoking) as against his 'will'...So what is 'self' is a matter of perception.
    I was using a similar type of arguement to argue in another thread that what is self is not sharply defined either in time or space. Not only do the limits of control extend outward from our brains in a slowly diminishing quantity but we are in process of continuous becoming. So it is difficult to point to a particular place or time to say this is where what I am begin. Nevertheless, even though there is no sharp division, the divsion is also clearly there. It is abundantly clear that we are not the universe even if we are considerably entangled in it.

    Quote Originally Posted by MaxEntropy
    But ultimately this presupposes a perciever, to percieve these selves. Try as I might, I am unable to percieve my internal perciever. If I sit down in a dark room and try, I tend to see things which seem more mystical than anything else, and therefore its difficult to reason about or discuss it.
    Only an objectified perciever need be presupposed. In actuality the perceiver is the one thing that never needs to be presupposed because it is part of the first datum of every experience. It is only when we try to say things about the perciever that we have difficulties because then we change it from subject to object. But this does not make the perceiver unknowable, it just makes it difficult to take the objective approach as in science. The perceiver (self) reveals itself to itself in what it does. We cannot look at the perceiver (self) as a specimen under a microscope but we can know our own perceiver (self) as it reveals itself as the subject of its thoughts and actions. It is difficult to define and describe the self, but the self defines and describes itself, by its own choices.

    Quote Originally Posted by MaxEntropy
    Yeah, I think that's really important to all this. Quantum mechanics relies on statistical models because at a certain level of smallness you can't give a deterministic explanation. (Thus annoying Einstein: "God does not pla dice") The important thing about statistical models is that they are admittedly incomplete. For instance, I can tell you objectively about "bus entropy", which I have observed while taking the bus: people spread out as much as they can on a bus, its incredibly improbable for strangers to all get on a bus and pack the left side seats while leaving the right side empy. But this isn't deterministic: You can easily get 25 freinds to get on a bus and provide a counter example, it just happens very very rarely. So "bus entropy" is an idea you can bank on (its been observed under other names by social scientists) and its an objective idea describing human behavior...But its not deterministic, it doesn't effect free will. You can clearly see the subjective side of "bus entropy", which is the experience of respect for other riders, and the desire to give them space, and have space yourself...But you are also free to act against those feelings.
    Well you describe statistical mechanics (thermodynamics) very well but quantum mechanics is not the same thing. There is no underlying statistical model to quantum mechanics. In fact that is really the whole point there is NOTHING underlying quantum mechanics - nothing, that is, that will fit into this reality constructed from the objectively observable. We must either abandon causality (determinism) or look for causality elsewhere in what does not share this characteristic of being objectively observable.

    Quote Originally Posted by MaxEntropy
    We shouldn't deny the subjective, but we also shouldn't deny the objective.

    Our subjective emotions drive us to act in accordance with observable physical laws.
    Agreed. Nor can we deny that the vast majority of events in the world are part of a mathematically deterministic chain of physical events.

    Quote Originally Posted by MaxEntropy
    These all operate with an acceptance of limits on what we can know. When we can accept these limitations, we can make probabalistic observations of our behaviour like "bus entropy", which is something marketing and advertising people do all the time in market research.
    I am not quite sure whether or not you are getting the point about quantum mechanics. We are not merely accepting a limitaton of knowledge as we do in statistical mechanics. In quantum mechanics we are forced to accept that there is nothing there to know unless we accept that the reality constructed from the objectively observable is incomplete. To oversimply, we must choose between determinism and materialism (or physicalism). It is not a limitation of knowledge so much as it is simply a limitation on the methodology of science in acquiring knowledge.

    Quote Originally Posted by MaxEntropy
    But, as you say, we do come back to the nature of the unobservable self, and I can't really say anthing about it at all...Except that maybe in it, not in our objective or subjective models, resides the most pure and true direct experience of our reality.
    The self is not unknowable, we can make it an object of our understanding. We just cannot do so with the methods of science based on objective observation. In other words, it is a project for speculative philosophy and/or religion who are not limited by the methods of science. We can construct a philosophical/metaphysical model that is consistent with our subjective experience of it.
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

    I now have a blog too: http://astahost.blogspot.com/
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  15. #14 Wow! 
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    I've got to jump into a mountain of homework right now, but I wanted to reply really quick:
    1) I don't know quantuum mechanics. I've read material for laymen, but that's about it. But I hope to some day, and yes, I assumed that it had a statistical basis...Now you've got me REALLY curious about it!!!
    2) Thanks for your awesome replies. Its a pretty rare thing to get such lucidity on such esoteric topics on the net!
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    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Well the first question that occured to me is whether this was intended seriously or as a joke for it almost seemed like a parody.

    But checking out the link I think it may be serious.
    After reading the OP a second time, I begin to comprehend it, despite a feature which initially rendered it nonsensical to me. Usually when causality is represented in this way of arrows linking object, the objects represent events. But in this case I think the objects represent enduring structures. In this case, I must break the news that this is not such a new idea, but plays a role in the new science of chaotic dynamics and is particularly well discussed in the book of Eric Jantsch, "The Self Organizing Universe".

    Since I am quite familiar with these ideas and have completely integrated them into my own religious viewpoint, the intent of the the OP to make this an argument against validity of the idea of God is somewhat ludicrous. If all that is intended is to put forth the idea that God is not required as as explanation for the observable universe, then I think many here in this forum can testify that in my case Lonely_Warrior is preaching to the choir. Clearly this is irrelevant to my belief in God. Therefore I shall skip the introductory comments which are for the purpose of bending the later material to this purpose, as having been rendered absurd in my own person, to instead discuss the principle ideas being introduced instead.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lonely_Warrior
    The common sense suggests, that for explanation of observable raging life it is necessary to admit, that each separate subject, each organism, each social unit and even a separate computer program product should contain the special internal causative engine, a source of a local determinism which maintains specific autonomous internal life in it.
    Well I do not think you should include computer program in your list because they are not in general designed with any nonlinear processes controlling them. Limited simulations of nonlinear mathematics have been made, but simulations of acutal nonlinear physical systems cannot reproduce the reality without considerable "fudging" by the use of pseudo-random variables, because of the inherently discrete nature of the computer. It is conceivable that quantum computing may eventually change this reality but that is not yet.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lonely_Warrior
    The conventional concept of determinism for today does not suppose existence of such sources. In it scandalous weakness of this concept. Not finding a required causative source within the framework of philosophy, people are compelled to address there, where always in readiness a number of exotic, exciting fancy of irrational causative sources that is in religion and mysticism.
    That is because such "sources" would be contrary to the very idea of exhaustive determinism. A true source would be a first cause - an uncaused event that is itelf the beginning of a causal chain. Such first causes are now a recognized feature of quantum mechanics, and are called wave collapse. There are some stubborn defenders of determinism who seek to remove this embarrassment by pursuing something called decoherence, but I believe that in the end they are only hiding the wave collapse in the loss of counterfactual definiteness as in Everett's Many World's interpretation.

    I am afraid you do understand the difficulty at all. For the failure of Bell's inequality to vindicate the belief in hidden variables did not in any way disprove determinism itself but only physical determinism. The point is that we can only rescue determinism by looking for the cause of these events outside the physical reality constructed from observable events and measurements.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lonely_Warrior
    Today the situation can be considerably rectified. Recently published concept Ring Determinism discovers a required internal causative source by the way a closed on itself plot of customary causal chain, a selfcontained causative circuit which, it turned out, is contained in entrails of each separate natural formation.
    The internal causative agents you speak of are nothing but the amplifying character of nonlinear systems with their cyclical processes involving the feedback effect. And what these cyclical processes amplify are the forementioned quantum wave collapse events that occur in the quantum measurements as a result of the same kind of amplification process which is inherent in measurement.

    Your description of these causative loops as something that continues to operate through time contradicts the very idea of them being causative loops, which would much more like isolated yet nonlocal events. Your descriptions sound more like a spiral, circling only in space but progressing through time.

    If indeed you are proposing a causative loop and not a spiral then you have already made the leap beyond physical determinism to the kind of self-causation which I have proposed in my definition of freewill. Far from closing the door against nonphysical explanations, you have merely made your own. In yours however I cannot see any improvement over the idea of purely random events, for your self caused events are isolated, unrelated and without origin. The religious if they are inclined to accept your model are perfectly free to attribute these apparently self-caused events with whatever non-physical orgin they choose.

    In any case, the biggest weakness of your idea is the complete lack of explanation of why these loops exist, not to mention the lack of any kind of scientific evidence for their existence. And on top of that you must also explain the descriptive discrepancy between the idea of isolated causal loops and something which endures through time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lonely_Warrior
    So that educated people can to sigh with relief now: for them rather weighty rational argument against idea of creationism has appeared and necessity to appeal to irrational imaginations has vanished.
    This conclusion, I am sorry to say, sounds absurd to both atheist and theist alike. The argument you have called "weighty" and "rational" is anything but, and I expect the atheists in this forum are simply laughing at this rather than sighing with any relief. The theists have already confronted in evolution a far greater challenge to their rationale and have already either adjusted their thinking or repudiated the science, and what you are introducing here will make no difference to them either.
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

    I now have a blog too: http://astahost.blogspot.com/
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