On 07 Aug 2012, at 17:24, John Clark wrote:
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.
You need faith in some world/reality, to do *fundamental* science.
> 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;
Apparent matter, or primitive matter. In our context everything is in
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.
I gave the definitions. But you reject them! You seem to prefer the
literalist one, despite known to be from authority, and then you only
mock them. To be honest I find this to be a quite unscientific attitude.
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.
No, I find that normal. Atheism needs a precise notion of God to make,
but all serious theologian and mystics tend to think that God, like
truth or consciousness does not admit a simple definition, making
atheism a very vague position, unless it means only I don't believe in
the literalist abramanic definition of God. In which case 99% of the
mundial population is atheist, and that makes the notion quite trivial.
> I don't believe in any literal definition, of God, universe,
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?
Because I am not an atheist. I am fascinated by most discourses by
many theologians and mystics belonging to a wide variety of
traditions. I have studied classical chinese to be sure I did not
misinterpret the taoists, which have been my favorite for a long time.
I have read Plato and Plotinus. I am a neoplatonist believer, if you
want, and as far as I can conceive that comp is correct, I am a
Pythagorean. I believe in 0, 1, 2, 3, ... and all the rest is a
logical consequence of addition and multiplication (and definitions).
In particular, as far as I believe comp possible (that my brain works
like a digital machine at some level), I don't believe in a primary
universe or nature. Those are emergent pattern in arithmetic when seen
from inside, by machine or relative number. I provide a constructive
proof making the computationalist hypothesis testable. You stopped at
step 3 for reason which still eludes me.
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