Page 404 of 417 FirstFirst ... 304354394402403404405406414 ... LastLast
Results 12,091 to 12,120 of 12489

Thread: The last and final argument about reality.

  1. #12091
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Liverpool, UK
    Posts
    4,223
    In order to get around this issue and actually be able to demonstrate beyond reasonable doubt that something is indeed true of MIR precisely the way we perceive and understand it. There would seem to be 2 critical stages

    1) a postulate free theorem that can be shown to be true regardless of which way we wish to think about things. Science goes along way to achieving this, but still doesn't match the bar. Nor does your concept of tigers etc although in some ways it gets close. The problems here are well characterized throughout this thread and elsewhere. The simple truth is, no demonstration exists that is totally postulate free. However some obviously have more, and not all postulates are equally large.

    2) Now the even harder bit... To demonstrate that regardless of setup this would have to be true. That is its not just an inescapable conclusion for the human mind, but in fact the truth MUST transcend this to any conceivable or indeed inconceivable mind. This might well turn out impossible to do, even if we limit it to conceivable minds, (which would leave a huge question mark over the validity of the conclusion). However one thing is certain here, you can't even begin to ask the second question, until you can satisfy the first one, which we have no current example.

    ETA: now we might be able to reframe this a little. But as we do so we must be aware of what we are doing. The above represents the purest form of 'proof' here, it still wouldn't be absolute proof but it is probably as close as we could ever achieve. So for example we might allow in that there are question marks over MIR, but if we accept that Postulate as a given for our framework we can avoid some of the problems in question 1, but are then constraining our ability to answer question 2. However we can do this and then we move some of what we are saying closer to an acceptable answer to question 1 given that assumption. However we are still highly constrained in what we can actually say here. We can certainly move onto assert that something is there in MIR that we are all experiencing as a tiger and that we all seem to draw at least a consistent viewpoint to allow consensus. SO at this point we can given our postulate say that to at least this extent what we are perceiving has a reality in MIR, although there are question marks over whether what we are agreeing upon is actually the same thing, or just similar enough for us to find consensus etc. In ordfer to adreess this we would have to add in more postulates etc, each of which making it harder and harder to answer question 2.

    Question 2 cannot be simplified at all, the answer to this cannot require anything that happens to make sense to us but which cannot actually be demonstrated, or it invalidates itself. So it seems that in order to allow us to form a descriptive notion of MIR, we must by this very action ensure that we cannot claim it matches up to MIR, only that we can find a consensus MDR as human beings into which we can assert our assumptions.

    THUS: only with a genuine claim that matches both 1 and 2 could we ever reasonably assert that we have, (in so far as is physically possible) have avoided the MDR trap and indeed be able to make a genuine claim about something mind independent. At this point the role of the mind here would have been trivialised to it simply needing a mind to draw a conclusion, but its role would be demonstrably passive.
    Last edited by malaidas; 2017-Apr-21 at 11:25 AM.
    You're really not going to like it, the meaning of life the universe and everything is.... is.... 42!
    What??????
    is that all you have to show for 7.5 million years of work?????
    it was a tricky assignment.

    "Live Long and Prosper" in memory of Leonard Nimoy
    "I think I'll change my name to Cliff. "Cliff, I can't see anyone lasting in this industry with a name like Cliff" in memory of Terry Pratchett

  2. #12092
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Liverpool, UK
    Posts
    4,223
    There might well be a Nobel Peace Prize for anyone who can manage the above, but I am not holding my breath waiting for it to be presented to anyone.
    You're really not going to like it, the meaning of life the universe and everything is.... is.... 42!
    What??????
    is that all you have to show for 7.5 million years of work?????
    it was a tricky assignment.

    "Live Long and Prosper" in memory of Leonard Nimoy
    "I think I'll change my name to Cliff. "Cliff, I can't see anyone lasting in this industry with a name like Cliff" in memory of Terry Pratchett

  3. #12093
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Depew, NY
    Posts
    10,541
    Quote Originally Posted by Ken G View Post
    I'm not sure what the source of alarm is there, because the meaning does indeed extend to autism and alternative cognition. I don't devalue differences in minds, I'm simply saying that a person who is not severely autistic may have a very different idea about "what reality is" than someone who is severely autistic. Of course, we view our way of looking at reality as "the right one", but this is based solely on the fact that it is our perspective, coupled with the fact that it is more functional in the ways we want it to be. So when we talk about "objective reality", we must set aside the perspective of the autistic person, or it wouldn't seem so "objective" after all. This is a necessity for using the concept of objective reality, a concept that science uses all the time, but it does not imply that what we mean by "objective reality" is "what is really happening", and the perceptions of the autistic person are some kind of "delusion". Even someone who is certifiably insane has some kind of dysfunctional view of reality, and it doesn't work for what we want the reality concept to be, yet there are cases where people with significant sanity issues have made spectacular breakthroughs in the understanding of reality for the rest of us. So that's what I mean about the complex interplay between our working operational definition of "objective reality" and the "similar minds" it requires, and the fact that this is all MDR.

    But yes, where you see this most acutely and most important for society and education is when you have a room full of people, and half of them think the universe is about 14 billion years old, and the other half think it is some 6000 years old. Those are very different realities, and the scientific thinkers are confident that their approach is going to make the correct predictions going forward, whereas the other group is likely kidding themselves if they think that, but that second group is still free to say that making predictions is not what is important to them and is not the "right way" to say what is "really true." This is why when Bill Nye asked a creationist if there was any scientific finding or experiment that could ever be capable of refuting that creationist's belief, the creationist said no, because he already knew the truth-- so any scientific discovery to the contrary would have to be some kind of mistake! You just can't get a more obvious example of the MDR concept than that, but I'm more interested in how MDR manifests itself even in science.
    It sounds like you are defining people, to be honest.

    Bill Nye, whom I respect a lot, is not using science at all in this case. He is using rhetoric, which is logic, but not science. What if the answer to his question was "yes, yes there is an experiment" or perhaps "None, that I know of, however I can't say that there never will be one."? Could he have asked someone to scientifically define such an experiment? I guess, unless they didn't know. The problem with this example is that creationism is a moving target. People make all kinds of wild claims. If someone ever thought to say something along the lines of "I don't know" the argument ends. Nye was dealing with someone who was begin disingenuous, but not particularly scientific, hence logic not science. Basically drama/garbage reduction.
    Last edited by Solfe; 2017-Apr-21 at 12:57 PM.
    Solfe, Dominus Maris Pavos.

  4. #12094
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Lugano, Switzerland
    Posts
    6,762
    MIR, MDR, I do not really care. Point is we detect something external to our brain.

  5. #12095
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Liverpool, UK
    Posts
    4,223
    Quote Originally Posted by gzhpcu View Post
    MIR, MDR, I do not really care. Point is we detect something external to our brain.
    so farv as this is limited to 'some sense' we are in agreement


    mind dependently of course
    You're really not going to like it, the meaning of life the universe and everything is.... is.... 42!
    What??????
    is that all you have to show for 7.5 million years of work?????
    it was a tricky assignment.

    "Live Long and Prosper" in memory of Leonard Nimoy
    "I think I'll change my name to Cliff. "Cliff, I can't see anyone lasting in this industry with a name like Cliff" in memory of Terry Pratchett

  6. #12096
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    25,630
    Quote Originally Posted by gzhpcu View Post
    If you walk along the sidewalk and see a frontal collision, do not tell me for someone else it is not happening. Or say you get mugged. Both actually are.
    Of course they "actually are," if that's what your mind means by the phrase. These are your words, so your mind gets to mean something by them. What it means is, of course, demonstrably MDR. I could demonstrate it again here, as I have done so many times.

  7. #12097
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Lugano, Switzerland
    Posts
    6,762
    You are confusing words with events. Words are just tags for events.

  8. #12098
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    25,630
    Quote Originally Posted by gzhpcu View Post
    You are confusing words with events. Words are just tags for events.
    But you are talking about events, right now. So the inescapable, easily demonstrable, hard cold fact is, this whole thread is about people imagining, conceptualizing, thinking about, and ultimately talking about, events. Deal with it, it's a fact.
    Last edited by Ken G; 2017-Apr-21 at 04:22 PM.

  9. #12099
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Lugano, Switzerland
    Posts
    6,762
    Well, one obviously has to communicate in a forum, but that does not disqualify experiences in life.

  10. #12100
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    25,630
    Quote Originally Posted by gzhpcu View Post
    Well, one obviously has to communicate in a forum, but that does not disqualify experiences in life.
    We've already covered that-- talking about experiences is one form of mind dependence, having experiences is another. But they are both demonstrably mind dependent, so the distinction you are making does not take you to MIR. Whether the topic is experiences, or how we use words to describe experiences, either way your mind is there. In science, we call those observation and theory, the two key components of the endeavor, and both demonstrably mind dependent.
    Last edited by Ken G; 2017-Apr-21 at 09:15 PM.

  11. #12101
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Lugano, Switzerland
    Posts
    6,762
    But there is a difference: talking about experience has its origins in the mind. Having an experience is the mind reacting to outside signals. One is active, the other passive.

  12. #12102
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Liverpool, UK
    Posts
    4,223
    Quote Originally Posted by gzhpcu View Post
    But there is a difference: talking about experience has its origins in the mind. Having an experience is the mind reacting to outside signals. One is active, the other passive.
    Unfortunately we know that brain isn't entirely passive here either though. It at very least is acting to create the qualia of the experience, it may be doing a whole lot more.
    You're really not going to like it, the meaning of life the universe and everything is.... is.... 42!
    What??????
    is that all you have to show for 7.5 million years of work?????
    it was a tricky assignment.

    "Live Long and Prosper" in memory of Leonard Nimoy
    "I think I'll change my name to Cliff. "Cliff, I can't see anyone lasting in this industry with a name like Cliff" in memory of Terry Pratchett

  13. #12103
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Lugano, Switzerland
    Posts
    6,762
    Quote Originally Posted by malaidas View Post
    Unfortunately we know that brain isn't entirely passive here either though. It at very least is acting to create the qualia of the experience, it may be doing a whole lot more.
    Maybe reactive is a better word....

  14. #12104
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Falls Church, VA (near Washington, DC)
    Posts
    7,517
    I am breaking my silence of the past year and a half to refer to an editorial in Sky and Telescope, June 2017, under the headline Two Routes to the Truth by science editor Camille M. Carlisle. Immediately under the headline she writes, "Science and faith offer different but kindred paths to grasping reality." She goes on to reconcile the conflict many of us see between science and religion. She writes, "Both science and religion are a pursuit of truth. They're after different aspects of truth, different layers of reality, but they're still both fundamentally about truth."

    I am not copying and pasting the full editorial piece because it is under copyright. In my opinion my quoting of some brief excerpts constitutes fair use, just as in a school research paper. All are urged to find a copy of the magazine on a newsstand or in a library and read the piece on p. 84. It is heartfelt, simple and to the point. I find it refreshing after a lot of what I perceive as epistemological bickering in this thread.

  15. #12105
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    25,630
    Quote Originally Posted by gzhpcu View Post
    But there is a difference: talking about experience has its origins in the mind. Having an experience is the mind reacting to outside signals. One is active, the other passive.
    Which one doesn't depend on the mind?

  16. #12106
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    25,630
    Quote Originally Posted by Hornblower View Post
    I find it refreshing after a lot of what I perceive as epistemological bickering in this thread.
    "Epistemological bickering" translates into "sharing of dissenting opinions on the topic of what it means to know truth." Ergo, exactly the same thing that article is doing. If you think the article has an insight absent from this thread, feel free to point it out. Otherwise, it's likely that it's all the same landscape, "bickering" notwithstanding.

    The whole point of this thread is that people's minds decide the path they will take to what they regard as "truth", limited by their ability to perceive and think, and thus, the truths they arrive at depend on their minds. If the minds are similar enough to support a concept of "objective fact," and similar enough to support a concept of "logical inference" leading to a successful prediction that isn't merely retrofit to the preconceptions, then we have a basis to begin scientific investigation. But this is already a mind-dependent choice as to what to regard as "true" about "reality." It has demonstrable benefits in the realm of objective outcomes, but that's not the same thing as saying it's what is "true", unless that is indeed what one means by the word. On this forum, that's what the word should mean, but outside it, not necessarily. Ironically, we have seen in the above that it doesn't always mean that here either!

    So many people like to imagine "the truth is out there," which is what I call "choosing to believe in MIR," but this thread is about noticing that it is completely impossible to support any concept of "out there truths" until one first uses one's own mind to decide what the word means in the first place. If one chooses science, it becomes easy to demonstrate that the mind plays a role in determining what is true, and what is real. If one does not choose science, the mind dependence becomes even more obvious, in the making of the choice to believe in something that cannot be supported by evidence. Ergo, all one needs is logic to arrive at the mind dependence of the concepts of truth and reality. But of course, even the choice to be bound by logic is a mind-dependent one.

    Perhaps the whole thread could be summed up thusly:
    Truth is a concept. Reality is a concept. Anyone can believe otherwise if they choose, but good luck supporting it with evidence, and good luck making a successful prediction that requires that belief to make, and good luck coming up with a potential experimental refutation of your chosen belief.
    Last edited by Ken G; 2017-Apr-22 at 02:20 PM.

  17. #12107
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Lugano, Switzerland
    Posts
    6,762
    OK, lets back up a moment. We are surrounded by existence, of which we also are a part. Through our senses impulses are delivered to the brain, which tries to make sense of it all and which we term Reality. Reality is a mind dependent model of existence. So now we have eliminated the term mind independent reality. Reality is now defined as a mind dependent model of existence.

  18. #12108
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    25,630
    Quote Originally Posted by gzhpcu View Post
    OK, lets back up a moment. We are surrounded by existence, of which we also are a part. Through our senses impulses are delivered to the brain, which tries to make sense of it all and which we term Reality.
    Yes, you are describing a commonly used MDR for minds similar to ours.
    Reality is a mind dependent model of existence. So now we have eliminated the term mind independent reality. Reality is now defined as a mind dependent model of existence.
    Yes. But of course, existence is also a model. It's the old problem with the statement "the map is not the territory," because what we mean by "the territory" is just a different kind of map (the latter requiring a much more general meaning for our word "map"). The difference is important, but it's still demonstrably mind dependent.
    Last edited by Ken G; 2017-Apr-23 at 12:33 PM.

  19. #12109
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Lugano, Switzerland
    Posts
    6,762
    I do not see why exiatence should be a model. I attach no definition to it. The mind is not involved.

  20. #12110
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Norfolk UK and some of me is in Northern France
    Posts
    6,898
    Quote Originally Posted by gzhpcu View Post
    I do not see why exiatence should be a model. I attach no definition to it. The mind is not involved.
    Oh so your mind is not involved in your view that the mind is not involved? You have been consistent in believing in reality but also consistent in not accepting it is a belief you hold inside your mind. You have used the "there must be something" argument without accepting that "something" has many interpretations that we cannot test. I wonder what knowledge you possess that does not require your mind?
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
    Originally Posted by Ken G

  21. #12111
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Lugano, Switzerland
    Posts
    6,762
    The apparent fact that my mind has to create its reality from something. Somethong can not come from nothing....

  22. #12112
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    25,630
    Quote Originally Posted by gzhpcu View Post
    I do not see why exiatence should be a model.
    It's not that it should be a model, it's that we observe it to be a model.
    I attach no definition to it.
    Then what made you choose that word rather than glarbleflist? Glarbleflist is something you attach no definition to.
    The mind is not involved.
    That's not what tests out, all I have to do is get you to explain what you meant by that word, and the role your mind is playing, along with the differences from other minds, will be easily observed.
    The apparent fact that my mind has to create its reality from something.
    So you call that an "apparent" fact, which demonstrates quite clearly that you do see the mind dependence. After all, "apparent" to what?
    Somethong can not come from nothing....
    The Big Bang model made a lot of people reconsider that prejudice.

    A long time ago, a philosopher named Parmenides used logical reasoning along the lines of what you're doing to conclude that motion is impossible, and indeed any kind of change is completely impossible. He reasoned that A does not become B unless A already had B in it. But concepts like motion, and how it is controlled by Newton's laws, and biological change, and how it is controlled by evolution, are powerful models for making useful predictions, so are much more powerful than Parmenides' logical conclusion (even though his argument ultimately has received substantial support from the deterministic and time-reversible aspects of many physics theories). So in science, we don't go with what "should be", we go with what helps us make useful predictions. That's what the scientist means by "what is true"-- even to a fault to be honest.
    Last edited by Ken G; 2017-Apr-23 at 03:51 PM.

  23. #12113
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Lugano, Switzerland
    Posts
    6,762
    Quote Originally Posted by Ken G View Post
    It's not that it should be a model, it's that we observe it to be a model.Then what made you choose that word rather than glarbleflist? Glarbleflist is something you attach no definition to.That's not what tests out, all I have to do is get you to explain what you meant by that word, and the role your mind is playing, along with the differences from other minds, will be easily observed.So you call that an "apparent" fact, which demonstrates quite clearly that you do see the mind dependence. After all, "apparent" to what?The Big Bang model made a lot of people reconsider that prejudice.

    A long time ago, a philosopher named Parmenides used logical reasoning along the lines of what you're doing to conclude that motion is impossible, and indeed any kind of change is completely impossible. He reasoned that A does not become B unless A already had B in it. But concepts like motion, and how it is controlled by Newton's laws, and biological change, and how it is controlled by evolution, are powerful models for making useful predictions, so are much more powerful than Parmenides' logical conclusion (even though his argument ultimately has received substantial support from the deterministic and time-reversible aspects of many physics theories). So in science, we don't go with what "should be", we go with what helps us make useful predictions. That's what the scientist means by "what is true"-- even to a fault to be honest.
    The Big Bang is a model resulting from imperfect science. GR and QM are at odds with each other. It is an example of a mind constructed model of reality. OK, then, I will go with Garblefist. No mind dependence there.
    Last edited by gzhpcu; 2017-Apr-23 at 05:07 PM. Reason: typo

  24. #12114
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Lugano, Switzerland
    Posts
    6,762
    Science is an attempt by the mind to approximate and predict behaviour of phenomena.

  25. #12115
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Liverpool, UK
    Posts
    4,223
    Quote Originally Posted by gzhpcu View Post
    Science is an attempt by the mind to approximate and predict behaviour of phenomena.
    no argument there
    You're really not going to like it, the meaning of life the universe and everything is.... is.... 42!
    What??????
    is that all you have to show for 7.5 million years of work?????
    it was a tricky assignment.

    "Live Long and Prosper" in memory of Leonard Nimoy
    "I think I'll change my name to Cliff. "Cliff, I can't see anyone lasting in this industry with a name like Cliff" in memory of Terry Pratchett

  26. #12116
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Liverpool, UK
    Posts
    4,223
    Quote Originally Posted by gzhpcu View Post
    Maybe reactive is a better word....
    well that's tricky... I see what you are saying though.
    You're really not going to like it, the meaning of life the universe and everything is.... is.... 42!
    What??????
    is that all you have to show for 7.5 million years of work?????
    it was a tricky assignment.

    "Live Long and Prosper" in memory of Leonard Nimoy
    "I think I'll change my name to Cliff. "Cliff, I can't see anyone lasting in this industry with a name like Cliff" in memory of Terry Pratchett

  27. #12117
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Lugano, Switzerland
    Posts
    6,762
    You see a problem exists and sticking one's head in the sand (or semantics) will not make it go away....

  28. #12118
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Liverpool, UK
    Posts
    4,223
    Quote Originally Posted by gzhpcu View Post
    You see a problem exists and sticking one's head in the sand (or semantics) will not make it go away....
    I have never disagreed with the issue existing lol... the problem is that in some demonstrable sense we don't have an answer. I believe the same way as you though
    You're really not going to like it, the meaning of life the universe and everything is.... is.... 42!
    What??????
    is that all you have to show for 7.5 million years of work?????
    it was a tricky assignment.

    "Live Long and Prosper" in memory of Leonard Nimoy
    "I think I'll change my name to Cliff. "Cliff, I can't see anyone lasting in this industry with a name like Cliff" in memory of Terry Pratchett

  29. #12119
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    25,630
    Quote Originally Posted by gzhpcu View Post
    The Big Bang is a model resulting from imperfect science. GR and QM are at odds with each other. It is an example of a mind constructed model of reality.
    All of which distinguishes it how from all the other mind constructed models of reality, including the concept of reality itself? The real point here is, we have often discovered the folly of telling our models what they need to do before we observe what they need to do. So the scientist does not say "something does not come from nothing," because he/she has learned from history that as soon as you say that, the next thing you might find yourself needing to do is to create a model that violates this prejudice. It is never scientific to assert anything except well-tested models, and of course, scientists should always expect all well-tested models to break down somewhere.
    Last edited by Ken G; 2017-Apr-23 at 07:39 PM.

  30. #12120
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Lugano, Switzerland
    Posts
    6,762
    Science creates models to help understand how things work, not necessarily how things are. QM with its idealized zero dimensional points, is one example; string theory with its one dimensional strings vibrating in n dimensions is another. The primary gosl,of science is ti figure out how things work, not what things physically are. It is a realm of idealzed mathematicsl models.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •