On 30.07.2012 11:19 Alberto G. Corona said the following:
Evgenii : I thank you for your questions, since It helps me to
re-examine and clarify my position.
2012/7/29 Evgenii Rudnyi<use...@rudnyi.ru>
On 29.07.2012 11:28 Alberto G. Corona said the following:
These psycho-philosophical arguments like the one of John Ellis
what in evolutionary Psychology is called an explanation based
on proximate causes.
I guess that science is based on observation and hence it might be
good to define what observation is. To this end, past, present and
future seems to be quite a crucial concept. First a scientist plans
an experiment. Hence at the beginning the experiment is in the
future. Then the scientist performs the experiment and eventually
the experiment is in the past.
The notion of past and present is not only crucial for science, but
for human life. The consciousness of time appears as a consequence of
two things: Lack of information and the hability that humans have of
learning from experience. Plants and most of the animals have
innate set of behaviours or at most, a short learning program that
fixes behaviour after the young age. But humans modify their
behaviour depending on the past, but not only the past but depending
on the ordering of events in the past: In an experiment , as in a
love affair or in a battle, the lessons learned depends in the order
of the events. If we had not that ability to learn from experience
and thus, the need to remember sequences of events, then our
philosophers would not have the cognitive capacity to philosophize
about time, nor the scientists would perform experiments.
This is a position of common sense. Yet, to move forward it is necessary
to take decisions on how it could be possible to gain knowledge in such
a way to be sure that the knowledge is the truth (if this is possible at
Instead, ultimate causes are the physical causes that generate, by
natural selection, a mind with such concepts and such
phenomenology that is capable of such reasoning. I take
evolutionary reasoning because evolution is the only way to link
both kinds of philosophical and physical explanations. The first
is more important in practical terms, because our phenomenology
defines what IS real. Period. But only ultimate causes can
illuminate and explain them.
Recently I have written about Grand Design by Hawking. It seems
that according to you, the M-theory could be an ultimate cause.
Yet, it does not contain the A-series based on past, present and
future. One will find there at best the B-series only. It is
unclear to me how the M-theory could describe a scientist planning
and performing an experiment.
I said at the end that the ultimate causes can be the consequences
existence of the Mind. Of course the M theory is not a theory of
everything, It may be mathematical manifold in which our bodies and
the substrate of our minds live. but the world of the mind is
different form the phisico-mathematical world. In a timeful way of
thinking It can be said that the mind evolved (along time) by
natural selection to permit its owm survival and reproduction, but it
also can be said that the mind, or our shared minds, made of
communicable concepts, make possible the existence of the
mathematical substrate in which we live.
What do you mean by "the world of the mind is different form the
phisico-mathematical world"? Is this as by Descartes res cogitans vs.
[Our phenomenology conform a common, communicable reality among us
because it is the product of a common mind, that is a product of
a common brain architecture, that is a result of a common brain
development program that is a result of a common genetic
Let me ask Max Velmans' question again. According to neuroscience,
all conscious experience including visual is in the brain. Hence,
according to the ultimate causes, is the brain in the world or the
world in the brain? What would you say?
Again, this question is quite important, as we have to define what
observation is. Does for example observation happens in the brain
The activity of the brain is the mind and the mind is a separate
world that includes all that can be perceived. What is outside of the
mind may just plain mathematics. What we call phisical world is in
reality set of phenomenons perceived by the mind. Observations happen
in the mind. We can repeat and verify experiments because we live in
the same mathematical reality outside of the mind, and because our
minds have similar architecture and experience, so we have the same
language, interests, experimental machines, procedures, so, as Eric
Voegelin said, we live in a shared social mind.
I am not sure if I understand. How do you connect these two assumptions:
"What we call phisical world is in reality set of phenomenons perceived
by the mind."
"because we live in the same mathematical reality outside of the mind"
Do you mean that the world outside of the mind is congruent with the
perceived world by the mind?
However, The COMP hypothesis it is possible to parsimoniously
substitute every component of the brain by a silicon analogue without
the mind being aware of the change. this , for me, makes the question
"were our minds come from" a mistery
Do you know Bruno's theorem? If yes, what do you think about it?
An example of ultimate causes may be the theory of Relativity,
statistical mechanics, the fact that we live in a four
dimensional universe and our 4d life lines go along a maximum
gradient of entropy, and the desplacement along these lines is
called time, that is local to each line. Another ultimate cause
is the nature of natural selection, how and why a certain
aggregate of matter can maintain its internal entropy in his path
trough a line of maximum increase of entrophy, and it is by
detection computation and acting to avoid dangers and to capture
good things. The good and bad entropy must come in identifiable
bags in an eternal "videogame". This is a requisite for life. Non
avoidable changes of entropy causes mass extinctions.
[The maximum gradient of entropy is paradoxically at first sight,
the most computable path, that is why life proceed in this
In your presentation you use terms causation and computation. How
would you define them?
Under the idea of four dimensional (or higuer dimensional) block
where time are included and everithing is static, causality does not
exist. The M theory describes a timeless manifold, but there are
partial phisical laws, that describe particular local phenomenons,
that uses time as parameters, but these phisical laws which take time
as parameter, do not have a preference for a particular arrow of
time, so, as I try to show, heat in the air can rearrange the pieces
of a porcelain vase and push it up to the table. causality appears in
our time-oriented mind, who proceed, as I try to demonstrate in the
presentation, in the computable direction , the direction of entropy
increase. for this reason causes are less entropic that consequences.
is the drop of the vase what causes his crash because entropy
increase is the direction of life and we observe it this way.
Let us say that there is some conglomerate of atoms. When it
computes and when not?
From a black-box perspective, they compute when they are open to to
environment and they maintain its internal entropy. That may be the
definition of life too. From inside, they must live in a predictable
environment with smooth phisical laws where entrophy dangers and
opportinities can be discovered to react appropriately
I would suggest to consider a series as follows:
1) A rock;
2) A ballcock in the toilet;
3) A self-driving car;
4) A living cell.
Could you please apply your definition of computation to them?
The same is with causation. What is causation according to
ultimiate causes? Does it mean something more as solution to some
transient inexorable governing laws?
At the end as I said ultimate causes can be just consequences. I
used ultimate causes in the sense of evolutionary psichology, but
this does not ultimately bring any definitive meaning of causality,
when seen from a broader philosophical perspective. what is
interesting is the link between the phisical and the philosophical
world, betwen the world of phisico-mathematical and the world of the
mind that evolutionary thinking brings.
As for the entropy and the arrow of time, recently I have found
some nice quotes about Boltzmann
From Boltzmann’s fluctuation hypothesis to Boltzmann’s Brain
That's what happens with the entropy approach:
“And that minimum fluctuation would be “Boltzmann’s Brain.” Out of
the background thermal equilibrium, a fluctuation randomly appears
that collects some degrees of freedom into the form of a conscious
brain, with just enough sensory apparatus to look around and say
“Hey! I exist!”, before dissolving back into the equilibrated
The Boltzman brains , according with what i have read, are
different beasts. Boltzman pressuposes, that , since no random
arrangement of matter is statistically impossible, and Boltzman
demonstrated it in certain conditions (ergodic conditions) , with
enough time, some arrangements of matter would simulate minds, or
even worlds and civilizations. But 15.000 Million years, that is the
age of the universe is not enough. The Boltzman mechanism lies in
random events. the process of natural selection instead select random
events and create designs more fast. Seen from a mathematical four
dimensional perspective,, or better, in what the phisicist call a
phase space, adaptations may be seen as attractors in a chaotic
evolution. boltzman evolutions are pure chaotic.
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