[] On Behalf Of Bruno Marchal
Sent: Thursday, January 02, 2014 12:11 AM
Subject: Re: Another shot at how spacetime emerges from computational



On 01 Jan 2014, at 22:45, Chris de Morsella wrote:



[] On Behalf Of Bruno Marchal
Sent: Wednesday, January 01, 2014 3:50 AM
Subject: Re: Another shot at how spacetime emerges from computational



On 31 Dec 2013, at 22:16, LizR wrote:

My 15 year old son asked me "Why do people believe in God?"



Because all correct machine, cognitively rich enough (= believing in numbers
and induction, or being Löbian, ...) when they look inward, discover the gap
between G and G*, or the gap between truth about them and proof about them.


Then some machine try to communicate that experience---which is impossible,
and so they will use image and parables, which are not understood, and
parrots repeat, politician exploits, and little children believe they
parroting parents, teachers, etc.


We all believe, consciously or unconsciously,  in God, in that large sense
of a transcendental reason of our existence, but we are always wrong when we
project attributes to It/Her/Him, and much more wrong when invoking them for
direct terrestrial purposes, where "God" is only an authoritative argument
(always invalid, especially in the religion field, where it used the most).


>>Adults believing literally in fairy tales are just infants refusing to
grow spiritually. They are  governed by people who want steal the
responsibility and the maturity, and which have no interest at all in
spiritual research. The goal is to steal more easily the money and power. 


Religion – IMO -- can be distilled down to politics by other means; it
harnesses the deepest urges and powerful impulses within us and systemizes
these, providing channelized modalities of expression that provides the
worshipper with internal validation and preset answers, while corralling
them into a protean mass whose collective energy and “will” can be directed
towards achieving whatever political goals is profitable for the individuals
controlling the belief establishment.

Something I find fascinating is how so many religions and pseudo-religions
seek to establish a monopoly on belief…. 



>>I tend to think that only pseudo-religions do that. Some people can be
genuinely half-enlightened, though, and be sincere in the attempt to
communicate what is strictly incommunicable.


Yes, certainly. Terms and the usage of terms can be as slippery as an eel
(though I have not handled any eels so I cannot verify that they are indeed
slippery). Religion – at least this is my understanding of the term –
derives from the Latin religo a verb tense meaning more or less to rebind –
as in book binding where many pages are bound together into a larger
cohesive whole bound book. Now there are several ways one can interpret that
– the re-binding could have been intended to mean the re-bonding of the
individual soul with the larger cosmic story – as told by that faith
tradition; or it could mean the binding of many disparate individuals into a
single church.

I tend to use religion to refer to the organizational and intellectual
structures that are erected by faiths and are the manifestation of organized
faith practice; while using spirituality (or spiritual experience) to
indicate the exquisitely personal deep inner-experiences of those who seek
and have faith – and that could be having faith in some religion. If they
actively engage in seeking spiritual enlightenment etc. I  see that as a
personal spiritual pursuit – even if they are doing so within the
intellectual, doctrinal confines of some religion (i.e. organized faith
based system).


>>Computationalism will not be an exception. Some people will believe
literally that G* minus G applies normatively to them, and this will make
them inconsistent. That is why I insist it is only modest science and that
we must make the hypotheses explicit (comp + some amount of cautious hope in


You can bet on that J Any idea or edifice of ideas seeking to explain
everything is a prime candidate for takeover by that most deadly combination
of wolves and the many sheep who follow them.



on what can be believed and what cannot be believed. If belief is the
currency of religion; 



>>Belief is the currency of science, if not of everything.


I believe I thought; therefore I believe I am J



it stands to reason that established faiths seek to maintain a stranglehold
on the entire psychological apparatus of belief within the populations of
individuals that are born into the regions (or communities) where these
organized belief systems prevail.


>>If you can control the beliefs, you can control the people. But if
theology is conceived as a science, then you get the means to interrogate
the beliefs, criticize the theories, single out the contradiction and
progress toward possible truth (Dt). That should help to avoid the


One reason to prefer those hypothesis that are falsifiable J In fact, while
I appreciate the beauty and elegance of theories such as String Theory for
example, I see it more as a branch of mathematical philosophy than as a
branch of science, until it can be formulated in a manner that is


>>This asks for some amount of courage or "spiritual maturity". Maturity
here is the ability/courage to realize and admit that we don't know. This
has no sex-appeal, as we are programmed to fake having the answer,
especially on the fundamentals, to reassure the kids or the member of the
party ...


The same basic psychology that is operating in the allegorical fable of the
emperor’s new clothes is working hard within our minds. No one likes to
admit ignorance, especially when others seem so smugly self-assured in their
assertion of knowing… so yeah I agree the temptation is very strong to
“pretend” – or perhaps to stop looking and mentally bow down in faith based
acceptance of some set of doctrinal truth as being foundational and True
(with a capital ‘T’)

Philosophical edifices that do not provide a comfortable set of nicely
packaged answers, but that instead force yet more questions upon those who
delve into it – are quite a bit harder to sell. Much easier instead to
market the self-contained doctrine that side steps all the mess of actually
trying to work it out replacing the blood sweat and tears of actual enquiry
with some divinely inspired story/book, which one questions at peril of life
and limb (at least in much of human history). 








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