On Tue, Aug 7, 2012  Bruno Marchal <marc...@ulb.ac.be> wrote:

 > >I would be very interested if a theory of everything exists, but there
>> is no reason ti think it must.
>>
>
> > That is why we need a bit of faith in fundamental research.
>

The theory either exists or it does not and in either case faith is not
needed to know that fundamental research will teach us more about how the
world works.

> > But with comp, the question is easily settled.
>

With this thing you call "comp" if matter is organized in certain ways then
the adjective "conscious" can be used to describe it and that's all that
can be said about consciousness; however that's not all that can be said
about matter; if a theory of everything exists then there is a finite
amount of more stuff that can be said about matter and if there is not such
a theory then there is a infinite amount of more stuff that can be said. To
tell you the truth I don't even have a gut feeling about whether a theory
of everything exists or not, I just don't know.

>>  Imagine if you and some of your friends decided to collaborate to prove
> something about the real numbers, but one of you thought "real numbers"
> meant  a right triangle, another thought the points on a line, another
> thought it meant a oblate spheroid and still another a ice cream cone. You
> decide to worry about what "real numbers" means until after the proof is
> finished. Do you think the resulting proof would be any good?
>
> > All what is needed is to agree on some basic properties for the terms of
> our theory.
>

Yes I agree that is certainly needed, and yet I see on this very list
endless debates about if people have free will or not or if God exists or
not and there is not the slightest agreement about what "free will" or
"God" means. People very very literally don't know what they're talking
about, but whatever they're talking about they are doing so with great
passion. It's no wonder the debate never goes anywhere!

> you can take such definition[ of God], and then be open to critics for
> some feature. We don't need to believe in their theory on God, to accept
> partially some definition. [...] It is frequent to have many
> definition/theories. then we compare, reason, etc.
>

I just don't get it. If I said "Is your name Bruno Marchal?" you wouldn't
respond, as Bill Gates once did under oath during a antitrust hearing,
with  "That depends on what the meaning of "is" is " , instead you'd just
answer the damn question. But if I said "are you a atheist?" the response
is full of evasions, obscure definitions, qualifications, demands for
clarification, and enough legalese and general bafflegab to make the lawyer
for a crooked politician gag. I just don't get it.

> I don't believe in any literal definition, of God, universe, whole, etc.
>

If that's what you believe, or rather what you don't believe, then why are
you unable to utter the simple crystal clear declarative sentence  "I am a
atheist" ?  Why all the gobbledegook?

  John K Clark

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