On Apr 16, 6:29 am, Skeletori <sami.per...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Apr 16, 6:01 am, "rexallen...@gmail.com" <rexallen...@gmail.com>
> wrote:
> > What would make universes with honest initial conditions + causal laws
> > more probable than deceptive ones?  For every honest universe it would
> > seem possible to have an infinite number of deceptive universes that
> > are the equivalent of "The Matrix" - they give rise to conscious
> > entities who have convincing but incorrect beliefs about how their
> > universe really is.  These entities' beliefs are based on perceptions
> > that are only illusions, or simulations (naturally occurring or
> > intelligently designed), or hallucinations, or dreams.
> > It seems to me that it would be a bit of a miracle if it turned out
> > that we lived in a universe whose initial state and causal laws were
> > such that they gave rise to conscious entities whose beliefs about
> > their universe were true beliefs.
> I agree, if the initial conditions and laws are complex enough that
> the Matrix is directly baked there.

Assuming physicalism, the complexity we see around us had to come from
somewhere, right?  And there are only two choices:  either the initial
conditions, or the causal laws (which may have a probablistic aspect).

> If we want to talk about
> probabilities we'd need to assign some measure to possible universes,
> and most of the mass will be concentrated on the simple universes.
> However, "simple" in this case doesn't mean much and wouldn't preclude
> Matrix-like universes.


"Peter van Inwagen proposed a rather peculiar answer to the question
why there exists anything at all.  His reasoning is as follows.  there
may exist an infinite number of worlds full of diverse beings, but
only one empty world.  Therefore the probability of the empty world is
zero, while the probability of a (non-empty) is one.

This apparently simple reasoning is based on very strong an
essentially arbitrary assumptions.  First of all, that there may exist
an infinite number of worlds (that they have at least a potential
existence); secondly, that probability theory as we know it may be
applied to them (in other words that probability theory is in a sense
aprioristic with respect to these worlds); and thirdly, that they come
into being on the principle of 'greater probability.'  The following
question may be put with respect to this mental construct:  'Why does
it exist, rather than nothing?'" - Michael Heller

> It's even worse when you consider how much more likely it is that we
> live in a simulation :). Although, for every simulated world there's a
> possible universe with the exact same structure, so it might be
> difficult to distinguish between the two, even in principle.

It seems to me that for every possible universe there are an infinite
number of possible "deceptive" simulations of it.

But for the universe being simulated, there is only one possible
"honest" instance of it.

So...if we assume that physicalism/materialism is true, it would seem
that we should also assume that our perceptions don't tell us anything
about the true underlying nature of reality.

At best, our perceptions only tell us about the rules of our (probably
naturally occuring) simulation.

But more likely, our perceptions only tell us about our
perceptions...and it's a mistake to infer anything further with
respect to ontology.

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