On 5/4/2012 12:39 PM, John Mikes wrote:


I see the development into more understanding (did I say: better? No)
of the belief miraculous that governed human thinking earlier.

"Understanding" is one of those words often misunderstood. It is used to refer both to a feeling of familiarity and empathy and also to an ability to predict and manipulate. Gods and miracles were easily 'understood' as projections of the intuitive empathy for other people onto agents behind natural phenomena (storm gods, volcano gods, illness demons,...). Science and mathematics brought a much greater understanding in the sense of prediction and manipulation of natural phenomena, but at a loss of the easy intuitive understanding. Instead science and mathematics have to be studied and used for a long time before intuition develops and one gains that intuitive 'understanding'. Because one is easy while the other is hard and takes time, people tend to suppose that their empathy and other feelings are REAL understanding and scientific understanding is ersatz, that computations can't produce REAL understanding.

Also humanity developed a technological prowess (that is almost good) by the newly (3000yrs?) evolved views of the world. So I can only envy your self-confidence of a FREE WILL coming from you only, no deterministic leads, as a random choice (random, what I deny: there would be no physical 'LAW' if there were "randomly" occurring anything.)

Physical 'laws' of quantum mechanics seem to work very well while being fundamentally based on randomness. Random doesn't mean anything can happen and all possible events are equally probable - it just means some degree of non-determinism. Identical free neutrons have a constant probability of decaying per unit time. So the time-to-decay is exponential. That's a pretty solid 'law', but the randomness is narrowly confined to a prescribed one-parameter distribution with a fixed parameter value.

Brent

I cannot DENY what I have no knowledge about.
Just the bartender openeth his ugly mouth.
John M

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