Le 03-janv.-07, à 06:39, Mark Peaty a écrit :
BM: ' (= Bruno Marchal, not Brent Meeker)
OK, except I don't see what you mean by on a "number" basis. We know
that number have a lot of quantitative interesting relationships, but
after Godel, Solovay etc.. we do know that numbers have astonishing
qualitative relationship to (like the hypostases to mention it). '
MP: No no no, sorry, this is just me being colloquial. Nothing deep
or important was intended! :-) I was responding to a *possible
implication* in Stathis's statement about religious fanatics. I
thought it was worth emphasising that, along with the deluded
majority who think they are 'doing what is right', there are also
those whose motivation is strictly instrumental and manipulative and
who find willing collaborators amongst the naive fanatics. This
situation is not confined to 'religious' organisations of course but
to any sub-culture in which the description of the world has fallen
into a closed loop.
We agree on this.
BM: 'Except that Dawking and Dennet fall in their own trap, and
perpetuates the myth of a "physical universe" as an explanation. They
continue to bury the mind/body problem under the rug.'
MP: Well I think that we will rapidly reach our 'agree to differ'
line with this one. I think physical just means both extended and able
to be measured.
I can agree with that. Actually "can be measured" is enough. Some
measure will then be interpreted as extensions. But OK, sorry for not
always cutting the air genuinely .... :-)
If this is really what you mean by "physical" we could be closer than
you think at first sight. What I don't believe in are the "primitive
For example I do even believe there is a (comp) standard "model" of
particles. But their "token-materiality and primitivity" is a deformed
view from inside "arithmetics".
As such it is fairly close to self-evidently true, in my book. OK, so
that is an 'anthropic' outlook but I exist and seem to be some sort of
anthropos or whatever [sorry I never studied Greek and only ever
achieved 35% in my one year of formal Latin studies :-]. It seems to
me that physical is as physical does; as I wrote responding to
Stathis, number is theory is just that - theory.
See my preceding post. I agree to disagree on you on this :)
It is incredibly useful in all manner of practical applications as
well as effective in keeping lots of people off the streets doing
amazing logical/arithmetical things for interest and entertainment's
sake. I watch with awe and admiration, but I remain careful to
acknowledge that a description is a description not the thing it is
I also consider that we have to distinguish a description and the thing
it is describing. I could explain you without *much math* why the
number reality can be shown to transcend all languages and theories,
showing how much those things are different.
Existence per se is ultimately mysterious
Even number existence seems to me highly mysterious. But with the comp
hyp there is a possibility that both the mystery of seemingly existing
matter and the (really existing) mind can be explained from the mystery
of numbers. This is not really a "reduction" (only if you have a
reductionist view on number and machine at the start).
and our experience of being here now is essentially paradoxical: the
experience is what it is like to be the updating of a model of self in
the world [always 'my' model] but we conflate the experience with
actually BEING here now, when the experience is much more limited than
I do agree.
It would be much truer to say, I think, that this consciousness I take
so much for granted is ABOUT my being here now.
OK. It is coherent with my view that consciousness is somehow an
instinctive belief in a reality.
As much as anything I like to characterise it as: the registration of
difference between what my brain predicted for perceiving and doing as
opposed to what actually happened.
And I do agree with this. My point is just that, once we take comp
seriously enough, there is case that physics is no more the fundamental
science. What remains? Since 1970 I call it (in order) biology,
mathematics, biology, computer science, metamathematics, biology,
theology, biology, theology, psychology (suggested by Delahaye), ....
and I'm going back to (pagan) theology, at least in this list, for a
time. But the name is not important, or should not be important for
those who search understanding (in place of propaganda).
Like you, I think, I am uneasy with all form of reductionism,
Unlike you perhaps, I disagree with reductionist conceptions of the
natural numbers and machines ... Truth about numbers and machine are
provably not subject to complete or reductionist languages and
theories. I am not pretending this is entirely obvious, and it is
related to technical stuffs (which are easier than many people think,
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