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
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
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
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
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
(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
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
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
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
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
"evidence based science" ??
Yes, like not rejecting the physical necessity involved in a
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
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
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.
"Nature, to be commanded, must be obeyed."
~ Francis Bacon
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