On 23 May 2012, at 19:23, Stephen P. King wrote:

On 5/23/2012 4:47 AM, Bruno Marchal wrote:

On 23 May 2012, at 01:22, Stephen P. King wrote:

On 5/22/2012 6:01 PM, Quentin Anciaux wrote:

2012/5/22 Stephen P. King <stephe...@charter.net>

No, Bruno, it is not Neutral monism as such cannot assume any particular as primitive, even if it is quantity itself, for to do such is to violate the very notion of neutrality itself. You might like to spend some time reading Spinoza and Bertrand Russell's discussions of this. I did not invent this line of reasoning.

Neutral monism, in philosophy, is the metaphysical view that the mental and the physical are two ways of organizing or describing the same elements, which are themselves "neutral," that is, neither physical nor mental.

I don't see how taking N,+,* as primitive is not neutral monism. It is neither physical nor mental.

If mathematical "objects" are not within the category of Mental then that is news to philosophers...

If mathematical "objects" are within the category of Mental then that is news to mathematicians...

And it is disastrous for those who want study the mental by defining it by the mathematical, as in computer science, cognitive science, artificial intelligence, etc;

Are we being intentionally unable to understand the obvious? Do we physically interact with mathematical objects? No. Thus they are not in the physical realm.

I can agree, and disagree. Too much fuzzy if you don't make your assumption clear.

We interact with mathematical objects with our minds, thus they are in the mental realm. Not complicated.

But like programs and music, number can incarnate disks and physical memories, locally. Now you do seem dualist, of the non monist kind.

even more perplexing to me; how is it that the Integers are given such special status,

Because of "digital" in digital mechanism. It is not so much an emphasis on numbers, than on finite.

So how do you justify finiteness? I have been accused of having the "everything disease" whose symptom is "the inability to conceive anything but infinite, ill defined ensembles", but in my defense I must state that what I am conceiving is an over- abundance of very precisely defined ensembles. My disease is the inability to properly articulate a written description.

especially when we cast aside all possibility (within our ontology) of the "reality" of the physical world?

Not at all. Only "primitively physical" reality is put in doubt.

Not me. I already came to the conclusion that reality cannot be primitively physical.

You are unclear on what you posit. You always came back to the "physical reality" point, so I don't know what more to say... either you agree physical reality is not ontologically primitive or you don't, there's no in between position.

We have to start at the physical reality that we individually experience, it is, aside from our awareness, the most "real" thing we have to stand upon philosophically.

The most "real" things might be consciousness, here and now. And this doesn't make consciousness primitive, but invite us to be methodologically skeptical on the physical, as we know since the "dream argument".

The only person that is making it, albeit indirectly by implication, is you, Bruno. You think that you are safe


because you believe that you have isolated mathematics from the physical and from the contingency of having to be known by particular individuals,


but you have not over come the basic flaw of Platonism: if you disconnect the Forms from consciousness you forever prevent the act of apprehension. You seem to think that property definiteness is an ontological a priori. You are not the first, E. Kant had the same delusion.


(I only argue, showing the consistency and inconsistency of set of beliefs, in the comp theory).

From there we venture out in our speculations as to our ontology. cosmogony and epistemology. is there an alternative?

So you start from physics? This contradicts your neutral monism.

    So you do need a diagram to understand a simple idea.

Without the physical world to act as a "selection" mechanism for what is "Real",

This contradicts your neutral monism.

No, it does not. Please see my discussion of neutral monism above.

Yes it does, reading you, you posit a physical material reality as primitive, which is not neutral...

No, I posit the physical and the mental as "real" in the sense that I am experiencing them.

You can't experience the physical. The physical is inferred from theory, even if automated by years of evolution.

We cannot experience anything directly, except for our individual consciousness, all else is inferred.

OK, so we agree on this. (it contradicts your sentence above). I guess it is your dyslexia and that you were meaning:

"No, I posit the physical, and the mental is "real" in the sense that I am experiencing it."

Where I posit means I infer it.

Telescoping out to the farthest point of abstraction we have ideas like Bruno's. I guess that I need to draw some diagrams...

Not ideas. Universal truth following a deduction in a theoretical frame. It is just a theorem in applied logic: if we are digital machine, then physics (whatever inferable from observable) is derivable from arithmetic. Adding anything to it, *cannot* be of any use (cf UDA step 7 and 8).

You are free to use any philosophy you want to *find* a flaw in the reasoning, but a philosophical conviction does not refute it by itself.

If you think there is a loophole, just show it to us.

why the bias for integers?

Because comp = machine, and machine are supposed to be of the type "finitely describable".

This is true only after the possibility of determining differences is stipulated. One cannot assume a neutral monism that stipulates a non-neutral stance, to do so it a contradiction.

Computationalism is the theory that your consciousness can be emulated on a turing machine, a program is a finite object and can be described by an integer. I don't see a contradiction.

I am with Penrose in claiming that consciousness is not emulable by a finite machine.

This contradicts your statement that your theory is consistent with comp (as it is not, as I argue to you). You are making my point. It took time.

    You have no idea what "my theory" is.

I can't deny.

This has been a question that I have tried to get answered to no avail.

You don't listen. This has been repeated very often. When you say "yes" to the doctor, you accept that you survive with a computer executing a code. A code is mainly a natural number, up to computable isomorphism. Comp refers to computer science, which study the computable function, which can always be recasted in term of computable function from N to N. And there are no other theory of computability, on reals or whatever, or if you prefer, there are too many, without any Church thesis or genuine universality notion. (Cf Pour-Hel, Blum Shub and Smale, etc.)

I do listen and read as well. Now it is your turn. The entire theory of computation rests upon the ability to distinguish quantity from non-quantity, even to the point of the possibility of the act of making a distinction. When you propose a primitive ground that assumes a prior distinction and negates the prior act that generated the result, you are demanding the belief in fiat acts. This is familiar to me from my childhood days of sitting in the pew of my father's church. It is an act of blind faith, not evidence based science. Please stop pretending otherwise.

"evidence based science" ??

Yes, like not rejecting the physical necessity involved in a computation.

There is no physical necessity involved in a computation, no more than in an addition or multiplication. You will not find a book on computation referring to any physical notion in the definition. This exists only in philosophical defense on physicalism. The notion of physical computation is complex, and there is no unanimity on whether such notion makes sense or not. With comp, it is an open problem, but it does a priori make sense.

Oh my, can you not see that the book on computation itself is physical

No, I cannot see that, and what you say would contradict again that you have just admit that you posit the physical. You infer it, you don't see it. Unless you mean by physical "relatively consistent with my most probable local computations".

and is thus a case of the necessity of a physical instantiation?

It is not. I mean not in the primitive sense.

You can not seriously tell me that the most obvious fact here is not visible to you.

It is not visible. It is inferred abductively, or imagined, conceived, possible, but out of reach of experiments and experience. But its appearance can be explained, without needing to make it ontological.


I reject Platonism on these grounds; it is anti-empirical.

As Brent pointed out, it depends on the theory. Comp is platonist, but makes precise prediction (indeed, that the whole of physics is given by precise theories based on self-reference). This illustrates that platonism can be empirical.

    What ever.



"Nature, to be commanded, must be obeyed."
~ Francis Bacon

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