Aditya writes

> [LC]:
> > Well, Russell did also say that OMs and events seemed to him about as
> > alike as chalk and cheese. It's starting to look that way:
> > So, alas, it seems that the firmly established meanings of
> > "event" and "observer moment" can't really be said to be at
> > all the same thing. (Folks like Russell and Hal have been
> > using the term "OM" for years and years, and "event" has
> > a pretty standard meaning in physics.) Observer moments have
> > to do with something conscious (and, evidently, pretty complex).
> > And of course, as Hal wrote later on, consciousness exists on
> > a gray scale.
> Then dare I say that any Theory based on this "restricted" definition
> of OMs (happening to observers with consciousness/intelligence
> "comparable" to ours) can never be as complete as a theory based on
> the much simpler (and encompassing) notion of events.

I am hugely sympathetic to the point of view you are proposing, namely that 
theories based on OMs do have inherent weaknesses, and
are quite out of line with the progress sciences has shown historically.

Most of the proponents of OM-based theories will succumb to the temptation to 
resort to introspection as an investigation tool. Yes,
some will at all times keep flexibly in mind the realization that any OM 
explanation must be totally consistent with its dual
event-based explanation.

However, it's the eternal search for ever simpler more unifying explanation 
that fuels the search for a way to avoid another dualism
(so it seems to me), the idea that mathematics and physics are separate. That 
is, they want to derive everything about physics from
the platonic existence of mathematical patterns.

> Ok, the above sounds a bit arrogant on my part, but its just that when
> I think of Big things like ToEs, I am much more comfortable without
> the burden of assuming that I am special in some way. If it were so,
> It would either be too much of a coincidence, or some act of a God
> that I can never hope to explain to myself.

Yes, some of Wheeler's theories (e.g. an observer created universe) have this 
very characteristic: the observer (to me an immensely
complicated machine, a johnny-come-lately in evolution) is placed at the center 
and deemed fundamental. But to be fair, the
time-deniers (the math Platonists who seek everything explained by patterns) 
allow that all conscious, complex entities have
non-trivial OMs.

> I can only agree to disagree by saying that any theory that explains
> consciousness in terms of something more than just "interference of
> events" on a HUGE scale, is pretty much the same as explaining away
> [coincidence] as acts of a God: that unreachable, unfathomable "entity".

Yeah, well said.


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