On Dec 3, 4:49 pm, Rex Allen <rexallen31...@gmail.com> wrote:

> > How do you know? You can't maintain
> > that indirect realism is true independent
> > of any metaphysical presumptions.
> I don’t maintain that indirect realism is true.  Only that direct
> realism isn’t, as it can’t account for colors, illusions, delusions,
> dreams, hallucinations, etc.

You need more than the falsity of direct realism to
prove idealism

> >> This is true in all cases:  scientific realism, scientific
> >> materialism, BIV, matrix, other skeptical scenarios.
> > It is not the same in all cases.
> > World+Experience
> > is simpler than
> > World+Vat/Matrix+Experience
> The Vat/Matrix is part of the World, not something that exists in
> addition to the World.  That’s obvious enough.

But you don't have to assume a Vat/Matrix for realism, so
the world is that much simpler

> Note that we don’t need a perfect simulation of the tree and ground
> and air molecules and intestinal bacteria.  Only good enough to
> produce the same experience...and experience is obviously pretty
> course-grained.  Many different microscopic states will produce the
> same macroscopic experience.  Theoretically we don’t even need a
> simulation...just a table of time indexed sensory input values to feed
> to the brain.
> Given this, it’s not clear that a real body sitting under a real tree
> on a real planet orbiting a real sun is even the simplest way to
> generate the experience of sitting under a tree.
> Where would the Vat/Matrix come from?  Well, where did the tree,
> planet, and sun come from?  It just takes a rearrangement of initial
> conditions to get a vat/computer instead of a tree/planet/sun.

Well, there;s a whole lot of problems with that.
For one thing, if you want to avoid solipsism, you need
multiple vats.  For another you are putting forward a scenario
with an an unnaturally special, contrived starting state rather
a naturally distinguished starting state such as minimum entropy

> What
> would make one set of initial conditions more complex than the other?
> I assume that you somehow feel that the BIV scenario must be more
> complicated because it is a vat AND it is somehow a
> representation/simulation of the environment that the brain
> experience

Because we would normally think of it being embedded in a
real world

> >> BIV, matrix, etc. don't introduce additional elements, they just
> >> arrange the "causal" elements differently.
> > Wrong. The vat is an additional element
> Wrong.  It’s just a different arrangement of quarks and electrons.

Either it;s in a real world, or the universe is contrived an unnatural

> > That's non-explanatory. No-one thinks Occams' razor means you should
> > give up on explanation. "Explanations should be as simple as possible,
> > but no simpler"
> The Physical World Hypothesis doesn’t explain anything, as it is just
> a bunch of terms that are themselves in need of explanation.

All explanations are non-ultimate in that sense, but some are less
contrived than others.

> I’ll agree that there appear to be recurring patterns in our
> observations, and that these patterns can be described via
> mathematical equations.  And that we can assign catchy labels like
> mass, spin, and charge to the various parts of the descriptive
> equations.
> But this is all description, not explanation.

 Since it is predictive it is explanation. However it is not
ultimate explanation.

> You can construct
> speculative metaphysical theories about how the various equations and
> variables represent real things that exist in the world, but these are
> just fanciful stories.  Mathematical metaphors not real explanations.

If there are no "real", ie ultimate, explanations, I will settle for
what is useful,
predictive, etc.

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