[Fis] _ Re: _ Re: re Gödel discussion

2016-05-02 Thread Louis H Kauffman
Dear Folks
I realize in replying to this I surely reach the end of possible comments that 
I can make for a week. But nevertheless …
I want to comment on Terrence Deacon’s remarks below and also on Professor 
Johnstone’s remark from another email:

"This may look like a silly peculiarity of spoken language, one best ignored in 
formal logic, but it is ultimately what is wrong with the Gödel sentence that 
plays a key role in Gödel’s Incompleteness Theorem. That sentence is a string 
of symbols deemed well-formed according to the formation rules of the system 
used by Gödel, but which, on the intended interpretation of the system, is 
ambiguous: the sentence has two different interpretations, a self-referential 
truth-evaluation that is neither true nor false or a true statement about that 
self-referential statement. In such a system, Gödel’s conclusion holds. 
However, it is a mistake to conclude that no possible formalization of 
Arithmetic can be complete. In a formal system that distinguishes between the 
two possible readings of the Gödel sentence (an operation that would 
considerably complicate the system), such would no longer be the case.
”
I will begin with the paragraph above.
Many mathematicians felt on first seeing Goedel’s argument that it was a trick, 
a sentence like the Liar Sentence that had no real mathematical relevance.
This however is not true, but would require a lot more work than I would take 
in this email to be convincing. Actually the crux of the Goedel Theorem is in 
the fact that a formal system that 
can handle basic number theory and is based on a finite alphabet, has only a 
countable number of facts about the integers that it can produce. One can 
convince oneself on general grounds that there are indeed an uncountable number 
of true facts about the integers. A given formal system can only produce a 
countable number of such facts and so is incomplete. This is the short version 
of Goedel’s Theorem. Goedel worked hard to produce a specific statement that 
could not be proved by the given formal system, but the incompleteness actually 
follows from the deep richness of the integers as opposed to the more 
superficial reach of any given formal system.

Mathematicians should not be perturbed by this incompleteness. Mathematics is 
paved with many formal systems.

In my previous email I point to the Goldstein sequence.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Goodstein%27s_theorem 

This is an easily understood recursive sequence of numbers that no matter how 
you start it, always ends at zero after some number of iterations. 
This Theorem about the Goodstein recursion is not provable in Peano Arithmetic, 
the usual formalization of integer arithmetic, using standard mathematical 
induction.
This is a good example of a theorem that is not just a “Liar Paradox” and shows 
that Peano Arithmetic is incomplete.

And by the way, the Goodstein sequence CAN be proved to terminate by using 
‘imaginary values’ as Professor Deacon describes (with a tip of the hat to 
Spencer-Brown).
In this case the imaginary values are a segment of Cantor’s transfinite 
ordinals. Once these transfinite numbers are admitted into the discussion there 
is an elegant proof available for the termination of the Goodstein sequence. 
Spencer-Brown liked to talk about the possibility of proofs by using “imaginary 
Boolean values”. Well, the Goodstein proof is an excellent example of this 
philosophy. 

A further comment, thinking about i (i^2 = -1) as an oscillation is very very 
fruitful from my point of view and I could bend your ear on that for a long 
time. Here is a recent paper of mine on that subject. Start in Section 2 if you 
want to start with the mathematics of the matter.
http://arxiv.org/pdf/1406.1929.pdf 
And here is an older venture on the same theme.
http://homepages.math.uic.edu/~kauffman/SignAndSpace.pdf 


More generally, the idea is that one significant way to move out of paradox is 
to move into a state of time.
I feel that this is philosophically a deep remark on the nature of time and 
that i as an oscillation is the right underlying mathematical metaphor for time.
It is, in this regard, not an accident that the Minkowski metric is X^2 + Y^2 + 
Z^2 + (iT)^2. 
TIME = iT
This is an equation with double meaning.
Time is measured oscillation.
Time is rotated ninety degrees from Space.

And one can wonder: How does i come to multiply itself and return -1?
Try finding your own answers before you try mine or all the previous stories!
Best,
Lou
(See you next week.)



> On May 2, 2016, at 9:31 PM, Terrence W. DEACON  wrote:
> 
>  A number of commentators, including the philosopher-logician G. Spencer 
> Brown and the anthropologist-systems theorist Gregory Bateson, reframed 
> variants of the Liar’s paradox as it might apply to 

[Fis] _ Re: re Gödel discussion

2016-05-02 Thread Terrence W. DEACON
 A number of commentators, including the philosopher-logician G.
Spencer Brown and the anthropologist-systems theorist Gregory Bateson,
reframed variants of the Liar’s paradox as it might apply to real world
phenomena. Instead of being stymied by the undecidability of the logic or
the semantic ambiguity, they focused on the very process of analyzing these
relationships. The reason these forms lead to undecidable results is that
each time they are interpreted it changes the context in which they must be
interpreted, and so one must inevitably alternate between true and false,
included and excluded, consistent and inconsistent, etc. So, although there
is no fixed logical, thus synchronic, status of the matter, the process of
following these implicit injunctions results in a predictable pattern
across time. In logic, the statement “if true, then false” is a
contradiction.  In space and time, “if on, then off” is an oscillation.
Gregory Bateson likened this to a simple electric buzzer, such as the bell
in old ringer telephones. The basic design involves a circuit that includes
an electromagnet which when supplied with current attracts a metal bar
which pulls it away from an electric contact that thereby breaks the
circuit cutting off the electricity to the electromagnet which allows the
metal bar to spring back into position where the electric contact re-closes
the circuit re-energizing the electromagnet, and so on. The resulting
on-off-on-off activity is what produces a buzzing sound, or if attached to
a small mallet can repeatedly ring a bell.

 Consider another variant of incompletability: the concept of imaginary
number. The classic formulation involves trying to determine the square
root of a negative number. The relationship of this to the liar’s paradox
and the buzzer can be illustrated by stepping through stages of solving the
equation *i *x* i* = *-1*. Dividing both sides by *i* produces *i* = *-1/i,
*and then substituting the value of *i *one gets* i = -1/-1/i *and then
again* i = -1/-1/-1/i *and so forth, indefinitely. With each substitution
the value alternates from negative to positive and cannot be resolved (like
the true/false of the liar’s paradox and the on/off of the buzzer). But if
we ignore this irresolvability and just explore the properties of this
representation of an irresolvable value, as have mathematicians for
centuries, it can be shown that *i* can be treated as a form of unity and
subject to all the same mathematical principles as can 1 and all the real
numbers derived from it. So *i *+ *i* = 2*i* and *i* - 2*i* = *-**i* and so
on. Interestingly, 0 x *i* = 0 X 1 = 0, so we can conceive of the real
number line and the imaginary number line as two dimensions intersecting at
0, the origin. Ignoring the many uses of such a relationship (such as the
use of complex numbers with a real and imaginary component) we can see that
this also has an open-ended consequence. This is because the very same
logic can be used with respect to the imaginary number line. We can thus
assign *j *x *j = -i *to generate a third dimension that is orthogonal to
the first two and also intersecting at the origin. Indeed, this can be done
again and again, without completion; increasing dimensionality without end
(though by convention we can at any point restrict this operation in order
to use multiple levels of imaginaries for a particular application, there
is no intrinsic principal forcing such a restriction).

 One could, of course, introduce a rule that simply restricts such
operations altogether, somewhat parallel to Bertrand Russell’s proposed
restriction on logical type violation. But mathematicians have discovered
that the concept of imaginary number is remarkably useful, without which
some of the most powerful mathematical tools would never have been
discovered.  And, similarly, we could discount Gödel’s discovery because we
can’t see how it makes sense in some interpretations of semiosis. On the
other hand, like G. Spencer Brown, Doug Hofstadter, and many others,
thinking outside of the box a bit when considering these apparent dilemmas
might lead to other useful insights. So I’m not so willing to brand the
Liar, Gödel, and all of their kin as useless nonsense. It’s not a bug, it’s
a feature.




On Mon, May 2, 2016 at 2:19 PM, Maxine Sheets-Johnstone 
wrote:

> Many thanks for your comments, Lou and Bruno. I read and pondered,
> and finally concluded that the paths taken by each of you exceed
> my competencies. I subsequently sent your comments to Professor
> Johnstone—-I trust this is acceptable—asking him if he would care to
> respond with a brief sketch of the reasoning undergirding his critique,
> which remains anchored in Gödel’s theorem, not in the writings of others
> about Gödel’s theorem. Herewith his reply:
>
> 
> Since no one commented on the reasoning supporting the conclusions reached
> in the two cited articles, let me attempt to sketch the crux of 

[Fis] re Gödel discussion

2016-05-02 Thread Maxine Sheets-Johnstone

Many thanks for your comments, Lou and Bruno. I read and pondered,
and finally concluded that the paths taken by each of you exceed
my competencies. I subsequently sent your comments to Professor
Johnstone—-I trust this is acceptable—asking him if he would care to
respond with a brief sketch of the reasoning undergirding his critique,
which remains anchored in Gödel’s theorem, not in the writings of others
about Gödel’s theorem. Herewith his reply:


Since no one commented on the reasoning supporting the conclusions 
reached
in the two cited articles, let me attempt to sketch the crux of the case 
presented.


The Liar Paradox contains an important lesson about meaning. A statement 
that says of itself that it is false, gives rise to a paradox: if true, 
it must be false, and if false, it must be true. Something has to be 
amiss here. In fact, what is wrong is the statement in question is not a 
statement at all; it is a pseudo-statement, something that looks like a 
statement but is incomplete or vacuous. Like the pseudo-statement that 
merely says of itself that it is true, it says nothing. Since such 
self-referential truth-evaluations say nothing, they are neither true 
nor false. Indeed, the predicates ‘true’ and ‘false’ can only be 
meaningfully applied to what is already a meaningful whole, one that 
already says something.


The so-called Strengthened Liar Paradox features a pseudo-statement that 
says of itself that it is neither true nor false. It is paradoxical in 
that it apparently says something that is true while saying that what it 
says it is not true. However, the paradox dissolves when one realizes 
that it says something that is apparently true only because it is 
neither true nor false. However, if it is neither true nor false, it is 
consequently not a statement, and hence it says nothing. Since it says 
nothing, it cannot say something that is true. The reason why it appears 
to say something true is that one and the same string of words may be 
used to make either of two declarations, one a pseudo-statement, the 
other a true statement, depending on how the words refer.


Consider the following example. Suppose we give the name ‘Joe’ to what I 
am saying, and what I am saying is that Joe is neither true nor false. 
When I say it, it is a pseudo-statement that is neither true nor false; 
when you say it, it is a statement that is true. The sentence leads a 
double life, as it were, in that it may be used to make two different 
statements depending on who says it. A similar situation can also arise 
with a Liar sentence: if the liar says that what he says is false, then 
he is saying nothing; if I say that what he says is false, then I am 
making a false statement about his pseudo-statement.


This may look like a silly peculiarity of spoken language, one best 
ignored in formal logic, but it is ultimately what is wrong with the 
Gödel sentence that plays a key role in Gödel’s Incompleteness Theorem. 
That sentence is a string of symbols deemed well-formed according to the 
formation rules of the system used by Gödel, but which, on the intended 
interpretation of the system, is ambiguous: the sentence has two 
different interpretations, a self-referential truth-evaluation that is 
neither true nor false or a true statement about that self-referential 
statement. In such a system, Gödel’s conclusion holds. However, it is a 
mistake to conclude that no possible formalization of Arithmetic can be 
complete. In a formal system that distinguishes between the two possible 
readings of the Gödel sentence (an operation that would considerably 
complicate the system), such would no longer be the case.



Cheers,
Maxine
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Re: [Fis] FIS Discussion (No Vol #)

2016-05-02 Thread Alex Hankey
Dear Bruno,

You have brought up a vitally important question.
Thank you so very much.
Best wishes

Alex

RE Bruno: How could the quantum correlations existence be definite if
nothing is objective?

ME: It does not really matter what the nature of the reality is, either
strongly objective (denied by quantum theory), or D'Espagnat's 'Veiled
Reality', the title of his book in which he discusses a
not-strongly-objective reality. Quantum correlations will have the same
level of existence as the wave function and everything built out of
mixtures of wave-functions, wave-packets, and / or quantum fields.

Quantum correlations exist as 'definitely' (or indefinitely) as everything
else.
(See the discussion(s) under Steve Bindeman's response(s) earlier today.)

ALSO: The problem with 'Interpreting Quantum Theory' is that if your basic
assumption about the nature of reality is not consistent with the
implications of quantum theory, then quantum theory will inevitably be
impossible to interpret, because its implications will deny your underlying
assumptions. (I REGARD THIS AS OF FUNDAMENTAL IMPORTANCE)

Quantum theory popularizer, Heinz Pagels (late husband of Elaine Pagels),
posed the question: "What is quantum theory trying to tell us about
existence / our universe?"
I fell that D'Espagnat's theorem says it all - or at least a great deal of
it.

My Proposed Resolution of the problem is to make sure that the macroscopic
reality you choose as the context for your interpretation of quantum theory
is not inconsistent with the theory. Then quantum theory turns out to be
relatively (sic!) easy to interpret.

But such realities are not popular as an underlying metaphysics in western
thought, though they do occur in South Asian schools of thought, and in
Whitehead's Process Philosophy.

That is why I promote a 'Vedic' interpretation of quantum theory which
starts with the idea of information and information generation as being
primary, and matter and energy as being secondary. The *processes* of
information generation (wave packet reduction), information transmission
(free states of wave functions), and information storage (bound states)
then become fundamental, along with the non-quantum states at critical
instabilities, where phenomenal experience becomes possible via <*O*
.

The primary source of information in the universe is then the symmetry
breaking process at the origin of the inflationary process in quantum
cosmology, a singularity in which I can locate information states of the
kind that I am proposing in this webinar as the foundation for
phenomenology / experience, since their <*O* structure can support
both the sense of self', in *O*, and integrated information supporting
gestalt cognition in <.

Interestingly and as I have already emphasized, this makes both the 'self'
a process, <*O*, and objects of perception, weakly objective entities
supported / manifested by sequences of information production processes.

I confess that I am a slightly unwilling Whiteheadian! (There is much to
learn!)

On 2 May 2016 at 09:55, Bruno Marchal  wrote:

> Hi Alex,
>
> On 02 May 2016, at 08:30, Alex Hankey wrote:
>
> RE Bruno Marchal: It is easier to explain the illusion of matter to
> something conscious than to explain the illusion of consciousness to
> something material.
>
> ME: At the Consciousness Conference I found it extraordinary that at least
> one plenary presentation was centered round treating the wave function as a
> real entity in the (strongly) objective sense.
>
> I was under the impression that Bernard D'Espagnat's work for which he
> received the Templeton Prize had definitively shown that nothing is
> 'objectively real' in the strongly objective sense. The definite existence
> of quantum correlations destroys all that.
>
>
> Is that not self-defeating? How could the quantum correlations existence
> be definite if nothing is objective?
> With Digital Mechanism we need to accept that the existence of the
> universal machine and the computations is as real/true as the facts of
> elementary arithmetic, on which everyone agree(*). Then we can explain why
> machines develop a belief in a physical reality, and why that beliefs can
> last and can be sharable among many individuals, like with the quanta, and
> why some part of those beliefs are not sharable, yet undoubtable, like the
> qualia.
>
> (*) I like to define Arithmetical Realism by the action of not withdrawing
> your kids from school when they learn the table of addition and
> multiplication. It is mainly the belief that 2+2=5 is not correct.
>
>
> Once this is accepted, the enquirer is faced with the question of what to
> accept as fundamental. I have always considered 'information' in the sense
> of the process or flow that connects the observed to the observer as a
> satisfactory alternative. The process of information flow creates the
> observer-observed relationship and (the illusion of??) their separation.

Re: [Fis] FIS Discussion (No Vol #)

2016-05-02 Thread Alex Hankey
RE Bruno Marchal: Gödel's theorem implies that machines which are looking
at themselves (in a precise technical sense) develop a series of distinct
phenomenologies (arguably corresponding to justifiable, knowable,
observable, sensible).

ME: I find this a fascinating observation in that you are making a
phenomenological association with a self-referential kind of machine.

However, from the perspective of my proposal, surely your classes of
machine are not operating from a critical instability where the information
states themselves have the self-referential property embedded within them.
Or are they? Or some of them?

The question then arises whether such a machine could exhibit a capacity to
"reason about" a problem, which it had been posed, and so tackle the
problem as one of a member of.a class of similar problems?

It is certainly true in mathematics that the human mind possesses such
abilities to an outstanding extent: not only the ability to comprehend a
problem, and secondly the ability to see the problem as a member of (in the
context of) a class of similar problems, but also the ability to *generalize
*a problem, and so *create* a class of similar problems as a context within
which more general reasoning processes can be applied to solve the problem
in question.

An example of such an approach is given by the Taniyama-Shimura
conjecture, "Each
Elliptical Function is equivalent to a particular Modular Form", one step
of the path followed by Andrew Wiles to prove Fermat's last theorem between
1986 and 1994.

Does this not also illustrate aspects of the discussion of Godel's theorem,
where Maxine has extensively quoted semantic objections to Godel's
statement on the grounds (as I understand her) that it could not be
construed as a direct product of phenomenological experience.

May I say that I would not regard my paraphrase of Maxine's reason as a
valid objection because I do not expect statements in mathematics to
conform to requirements for statements to be considered phenomenological.
The sentential calculus is constructed within the category of sets, and
Frege and Russell and Whitehead were operating within that framework, as
was Godel.

I personally do not regard the category of sets as a valid framework for
phenomenology.
My construction of a new information theory appropriate to describe
phenomenological experience specifically denies it. The sentential calculus
of Frege & co has no bite - it is superficial and not the enamel required
to start up the mind's intellectual digestion and absorption processes.


-- 
Alex Hankey M.A. (Cantab.) PhD (M.I.T.)
Distinguished Professor of Yoga and Physical Science,
SVYASA, Eknath Bhavan, 19 Gavipuram Circle
Bangalore 560019, Karnataka, India
Mobile (Intn'l): +44 7710 534195
Mobile (India) +91 900 800 8789


2015 JPBMB Special Issue on Integral Biomathics: Life Sciences, Mathematics
and Phenomenological Philosophy

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[Fis] _ Re: : Vol 25, #32, Nature of Self

2016-05-02 Thread Alex Hankey
Dear Steve,

What you have written is so supreme and beautiful!
Might I suggest a Deed-Poll application to
Un-Bind-a-man?

After reading your comments, I had to take time out and simply sit in
"Silence", and let my mind be filled with the 'energy' with which your
words had both filled it and emptied it.

And currently being with Indian friends in San Jose, I did so in front of
the apartment sacred space, which is adorned with a Buddha, a
Radha-Krishna, a Ganesha, the family Guru and other such pictures.

As regards this discussion of phenomenology, it seems to me that your
marvellous contribution stands both inside phenomenological experience AND
beyond it, and what takes human awareness to those more permanent states of
Being.

May I request Maxine who seems to me more experienced in technical
phenomenological analysis of language and expression than any of us to see
how well Steve's contribution conforms to Husserlian requirements to be
considered a valid expression within the boundaries / limitations of
phenomenology? I myself certainly do not feel adequately empowered to do so
in such company as Pedro and his Fis have arranged for us.

Further:

RE: ... silence becomes a conduit to enlightenment. One recognizes that the
use of concepts, and the use of reason to work with concepts and to help
distinguish between true and false views, and the very idea of having views
in the first place, are all highly problematic in the sense that they are
but imperfect manifestations of true reality.

ME: Amen - Omayne - Om / Aum
Is not the Role of Zen to silence the intellect so that the person becomes
open to Sartori?

May I add the following: one of the most wonderful statements of
realization in the English language can be found in the work of the 17th
century poet and essayist, Thomas Traherne, in his poem, My Spirit, which I
append in full below.

Note particularly the following sequence from successive stanzas: I have
put in bold those from stanzas 5 & 6 to emphasize that for me these
statements constitute the heart of the poem, and that I equate them with
the position of Advaita Vedanta - though Steve is more than welcome to
state how he relates them, and any other part of the poem, to the position
of Nagarjuna (or not so?).

Again, I regard these statements as the culmination of phenomenological
experience, and in that sense of the 'phenomenology of life'. In one of his
early books, Deepak Chopra quipped that life is not a material process with
an occasional spiritual experience, but rather a spiritual process with an
occasional spiritual experience.

Excerpts from 'My Spirit' by Thomas Traherne. Full poem below the quoted
sections.

1.  My Naked Simple Life was I

  That Act so strongly shined

 Upon the Earth, the Sea, the Sky,

 It was the substance of my mind,

  The sense itself was I.

  

  The Thought that Springs

Therefrom's itself. 

 ...

 In its own Centre is a Sphere

 Not shut up here, but every Where.


2. ..

  for tis more voluble than Light

 Which can put on ten thousand forms

 Being adorned with what itself adorns.


3. 

And every Object in my Soul a thought

 Begot, or was; I could not tell

  Whether the things did there

  Themselves appear,

Which in my *spirit *truly seemed to dwell,

 Or whether my conforming Mind

 Were not alone even all that shined.


4.  But yet of this I was most sure

  ...

That all my Mind was wholey Everywhere

What e'er it was, twas ever wholey there;


5.  O Joy! O Wonder, and Delight!

  O Sacred Mystery!

 My Soul a Spirit infinite!

 .

*That Being Greatest, which doth Nothing seem!*

Why, twas my All, I nothing did esteem

But that alone. A Strange Mysterious Sphere!



*6.  A Strange Extended Orb of Joy*

*  Proceeding from within,*

* Which ...*

* ..,*

*  . did Every way*

*Dilate itself even in an instant, and*

*Like an Indivisible Centre Stand*

*At once Surrounding all Eternity*.

7.  O Wondrous Self! O Sphere of Light,

  O Sphere of Joy most fair;

 O Act, O Power infinite;

 O subtle and unbounded Air!

  O Living Orb of Sight!

Thou which within me art, yet Me! Thou Eye

And Temple of His Whole Infinity!


N.B. Please note in the last line quoted from Stanza 6, the use of the word
'*Eternity*'. The 'strange extended orb of joy' does not simply surround
'all space', nor even 'all this universe' or 'all space-time', but rather
'all Eternity' which I take to mean, 'all possible space times'. He seems
to denote (connote?) that being surrounded and within the 'strange extended
orb of joy' is a necessary precondition for our experience of apparent
individuality 

Re: [Fis] FIS Discussion (No Vol #)

2016-05-02 Thread Bruno Marchal

On 02 May 2016, at 03:38, Maxine Sheets-Johnstone wrote:


To all concerned colleagues,

I appreciate the fact that discussions should be conversations about  
issues,
but this particular issue and in particular the critique cited in my  
posting
warrant extended exposition in order to show the reasoning upholding  
the critique.
I am thus quoting from specific articles, the first  
phenomenological, the second
analytic-logical--though they are obviously complementary as befits  
discussions

in phenomenology and the life sciences.

EXCERPT FROM:
SELF-REFERENCE AND GÖDEL'S THEOREM: A HUSSERLIAN ANALYSIS
Husserl Studies 19 (2003), pages 131-151.
Albert A. Johnstone

The aim of this article is to show that a Husserlian approach to the  
Liar paradoxes and to their closely related kin discloses the  
illusory nature of these difficulties. Phenomenological meaning  
analysis finds the ultimate source of mischief to be circular  
definition, implicit or explicit. Definitional circularity lies at  
the root both of the self-reference integral to the statements that  
generate Liar paradoxes, and of the particular instances of  
predicate criteria featured in the Grelling paradox as well as in  
the self-evaluating Gödel sentence crucial to Gödel's theorem.  
Since the statements thereby generated turn out on closer scrutiny  
to be vacuous and semantically nonsensical, their rejection from  
reasonable discourse is both warranted and imperative. Naturally  
enough, their exclusion dissolves the various problems created by  
their presence. . . .


VII: THE GOEDEL SENTENCE
Following a procedure invented by Gödel, one may assign numbers in  
some orderly way as names or class-numbers to each of the various  
classes of numbers (the prime numbers, the odd numbers, and so on).  
Some of these class-numbers will qualify for membership in the class  
they name; others will not. For instance, if the number 41 should  
happen to be the class-number that names the class of numbers that  
are divisible by 7, then since 41 does not have the property of  
being divisible by 7, the class-number 41 would not be a member of  
the class it names.
	Now, consider the class-number of the class of class-numbers that  
are members of the class they name. Does it have the defining  
property of the class it names? The question is unanswerable. Since  
the defining property of the class is that of being a class-number  
that is a member of the class it names, the necessary and sufficient  
condition for the class-number in question to be a member of the  
class it names turns out to be that it be a member of the class it  
names. In short, the number is a member if and only if it is a  
member. The criterion is circular--defined in terms of what was to  
be defined--and consequently not a criterion at all since it  
provides no way of determining whether or not the number is a member.
	The situation is obviously similar for the class-number of the  
complementary class of class-numbers--those that do not have the  
defining property of the class they name--since the criteria in the  
two cases are logically interdependent. The criterion of membership  
is likewise defined in circular fashion, and hence is vacuous. In  
addition, the criterion postulates an absurd analytic equivalence,  
that of the defining property with its negative. The question of  
whether the class-number is a member of the class it names is  
unanswerable, with the result that any proposed answer is neither  
true nor false. In addition, of course, any answer would generate  
paradox: the number has the requisite defining property if and only  
if it does not have it.
	As might be expected, the situation is not significantly different  
for the class-number of classes of which the definition involves  
semantic predicates. Consider, for instance, the class of class- 
numbers of which it is provable that they are members of the class  
they name. The question of whether the class-number of the class is  
a member of the class it numbers is undecidable. The possession by  
the class-number of the property requisite for membership is  
conditional upon the question of whether it provably possesses the  
property, with the result that the question can have no answer.  
Otherwise stated, the number has the defining property of the class  
it names if and only if it provably has that property. In these  
circumstances, the explanation of what it means for the class-number  
to have the property has to be circular in that it must define  
having the property in terms of having the property. The vacuity  
that results is hidden somewhat by the presence of the requirement  
of provability, but while provability might count as a necessary  
condition, in the present case it cannot be a sufficient one. In  
fact, its presence creates a semantically absurd situation: the  
analytic equivalence of having the property and provably having it.  
The statement of the 

Re: [Fis] FIS Discussion (No Vol #)

2016-05-02 Thread Bruno Marchal

Hi Alex,

On 02 May 2016, at 08:30, Alex Hankey wrote:

RE Bruno Marchal: It is easier to explain the illusion of matter to  
something conscious than to explain the illusion of consciousness to  
something material.


ME: At the Consciousness Conference I found it extraordinary that at  
least one plenary presentation was centered round treating the wave  
function as a real entity in the (strongly) objective sense.


I was under the impression that Bernard D'Espagnat's work for which  
he received the Templeton Prize had definitively shown that nothing  
is 'objectively real' in the strongly objective sense. The definite  
existence of quantum correlations destroys all that.


Is that not self-defeating? How could the quantum correlations  
existence be definite if nothing is objective?
With Digital Mechanism we need to accept that the existence of the  
universal machine and the computations is as real/true as the facts of  
elementary arithmetic, on which everyone agree(*). Then we can explain  
why machines develop a belief in a physical reality, and why that  
beliefs can last and can be sharable among many individuals, like with  
the quanta, and why some part of those beliefs are not sharable, yet  
undoubtable, like the qualia.


(*) I like to define Arithmetical Realism by the action of not  
withdrawing your kids from school when they learn the table of  
addition and multiplication. It is mainly the belief that 2+2=5 is not  
correct.




Once this is accepted, the enquirer is faced with the question of  
what to accept as fundamental. I have always considered  
'information' in the sense of the process or flow that connects the  
observed to the observer as a satisfactory alternative. The process  
of information flow creates the observer-observed relationship and  
(the illusion of??) their separation.


I can be OK with this. In arithmetic, it is more like a consciousness  
flow, and actually a differentiating consciousness flow, from which  
the laws of physics evolve.






Sequences of information production made possible by lack of  
equilibrium, both mechanical and thermodynamic, create pictures of  
particle tracks at the microscopic level, and pictures of objects at  
the macroscopic level.


This already seem to presuppose a physical reality. As I am interested  
in understanding what that could be and where it comes from, I prefer  
to not assume it. I gave an argument why such an assumption is not  
quite compatible with the digital mechanist assumption (not in  
physics, but in cognitive science).





Everything is made consistent by the existence of quantum  
correlations in mathematical ways use by Everett in the book on the  
Many Worlds interpretation by Bryce De Witt (note that I use the  
mathematics, but do not concur with the interpretation).


Everett did not talk about a new interpretation. He just gave a new  
Quantum Mechanics formulation, which is basically the old one  
(Copenhagen) but without the assumption of a wave collapse. I tend to  
agree with David Deutsch on this: the "many-world" is just literal  
quantum mechanics, where we apply the wave or matrix equation to the  
observed and the observer as well.






In my approach, the universe continuously makes choices, and selects  
among its own futures. I had a lengthy conversation with Henry Stapp  
two days ago at the conference after his talk, and checked that he  
still approves of this approach.



The only problem with Everett theory, is that he used digital  
mechanism, and what I did show, is that this should force him to  
extend the embedding of the physicist in the wave to the embedding of  
the mathematician in arithmetic (a dormant notion, alas). The ultimate  
equation of physics might be only arithmetic (or anything Turing  
equivalent). All the rest becomes internal phenomenologies, at least  
assuming digital mechanism.
This makes also digital mechanism testable, by comparing the physical  
phenomenology with the actual observation. Up to now, it fits:  the  
quantum weirdness of the universal wave (the multiverse) seem to match  
well  the digital mechanist arithmetical weirdness of arithmetic  
(intuitively and formally).
The only trouble is that such a top down approach leads to complex  
unsolved problem in mathematics, which is normal, given the depth and  
complexity of the subject. I am not a defender of digital mechanism, I  
use it only because the philosophical and theological questions  
becomes mathematical problem. I search the key only under the lamp of  
mathematics.


Best,

Bruno




P.S. Thanks to all for making this such a rich and interesting  
discussion.


--
Alex Hankey M.A. (Cantab.) PhD (M.I.T.)
Distinguished Professor of Yoga and Physical Science,
SVYASA, Eknath Bhavan, 19 Gavipuram Circle
Bangalore 560019, Karnataka, India
Mobile (Intn'l): +44 7710 534195
Mobile (India) +91 900 800 8789


2015 JPBMB 

[Fis] _ Re: : Vol 25, #32, Nature of Self

2016-05-02 Thread steven bindeman
Unless I am misunderstanding Nagarjuna, he uses a form of reductionism to show 
how all metaphysical positions are untenable. To illustrate this point in 
further detail, I will provide the rest of my section on his thinking from my 
manuscript on silence:

Following the implications of the middle way, Nagarjuna uses what is called the 
“four-cornered-negation,” whereby he refutes any specific idea by disproving or 
negating all four of its appearances: as being, as nonbeing, as both, and as 
neither.  Belief in any of these four cases is an extreme thesis in his view 
and must be transcended by a higher synthesis. In fact, Nagarjuna’s philosophy 
can be seen as an attempt to “deconstruct” in this way all systems of thought 
which analyze the world in terms of fixed substances and essences. Since 
emptiness is in fact  the negation of each of the four appearances of any idea 
or concept, if it can be shown to be true in all four instances, then the 
original idea, whatever it might be, will have been disproved.  By saying that 
all concepts are false, then, the quality of emptiness is pointed to as their 
essential nature.  Since all concepts are false, emptiness is in all of them. 
(This refers to the being of emptiness.) The truth of emptiness is, however, 
the same as the unreality of all existing elements, which is to say that the 
nonbeing of the phenomenal world is also emptiness.  But Nirvana is also the 
truth, so Nirvana is also the same as emptiness and the same as the 
impermanence of the phenomenal world (referring to both the being and nonbeing 
of emptiness).  Furthermore, the Buddha-nature is the ultimate reality of each 
person, and thus the Buddha-nature – and Buddha himself – is empty. Now we may 
add that since Nirvana is enlightenment, enlightenment is emptiness too.  
Nagarjuna is here taking the logic of Conditioned Arising a step further in 
order to argue that nothing, not even Nirvana, is unconditioned. Hence the goal 
of Buddhist practice in his view is not merely to attain Nirvana but to realize 
emptiness. Thus Nirvana and impermanence are not two separate realities, but 
make up together a field of emptiness which is itself not another superior 
reality but something that is empty of itself. (This last state refers to the 
fourth case of negation, neither  being, nor nonbeing, nor both.)

With all of these positions pushed beyond the limit of their sustainability, 
Nagarjuna cancelled the existing definitions of reality and the whole edifice 
of Early Buddhism was undermined and smashed. In the process of dismantling all 
metaphysical and epistemological positions, one is led to the only viable 
conclusion, which is that all things, concepts, and persons lack a fixed 
essence — because otherwise they would not be capable of change, and only 
change can explain why people live, die, are reborn, suffer, and are capable of 
becoming enlightened in the first place. 

Nagarjuna’s explanation of the meaning of emptiness itself provides further 
clarification. Its two dimensions of meaning include the idea that emptiness is 
“the situation in which conditioned existence arises and dissipates, and thus 
it applies to practical everyday experience,” and secondly it is “the situation 
of freedom from suffering, the highest awareness.” The latter formulation is 
the conclusion of Buddha’s Four Noble Truths. Since both interpretations of 
emptiness are dependent co-originations, both include the theme of both the 
arising and the cessation of pain, which combines Buddha’s first Noble Truth, 
namely that life consists in suffering, with his second Noble Truth, that the 
cause of suffering is found in human desire, along with the third Noble Truth, 
that suffering ends when desire ceases,  which leads finally to the the fourth 
Noble Truth, which is that desire ceases only when the eightfold path is 
cultivated.This eightfold path involves the understanding and practice of the 
following activities: right speech, right action, right livelihood, right 
effort, right mindfulness, right concentration, right attitude, and right view. 
Following this path successfully leads to emptiness.

Once an individual is able by following this path to achieve emptiness and 
detachment from the world, he or she will recognize how silence is the 
appropriate response to all metaphysical problems. In this way, silence becomes 
a conduit to enlightenment. One recognizes that the use of concepts, and the 
use of reason to work with concepts and to help  distinguish between true and 
false views, and the very idea of having views in the first place, are all 
highly problematic in the sense that they are but imperfect manifestations of 
true reality. But on the other hand, they are all necessary steps in a process. 
This perspective, voiced in the 2nd century by Nagarjuna, closely anticipates 
Wittgenstein’s propositions at the close of his Tractatus: 

6.54 My propositions serve as elucidations in the following 

Re: [Fis] The next round on physics and phenomenology

2016-05-02 Thread Robert E. Ulanowicz
Dear Alex,

I have considerable sympathy with the phenomenological backbone of your
argument. I would caution, however, about relying on quantum theory (a la
Planck) as a literal support of it.

I was trained as an engineer to place great emphasis on dimensional
considerations, specifically on the Buckingham-Pi theorem
. Engineers
reckon the magnitude of various phenomena according to dimensionless
ratios. As a rule of thumb, if a dimensionless ratio is either smaller
than 10**(-5) or larger than 10**5, the two phenomena being compared can
usually be considered dynamically independent.

Now Planck’s constant and the gravitational constant differ by 40 or so
orders of magnitude, and so I remain extremely skeptical of any attempts
to co-join the two. Back in the late 90’s I wrote (somewhere?) that
Hawking’s effort to marry the two were futile. He gave up the quest some
10 years later (obviously not in response to my skepticism! :).

I have colleagues in ecology, who have tried to portray ecosystems as
“coherence domains” due to the same quantum phenomena as give rise to
coherence structures among water molecules. Once again, I remain highly
skeptical (macroscopic entanglement arguments notwithstanding).

That having been said, I do think that quantum-*like* behavior does exist
at macroscopic scales, and that what you have been describing likely is an
example of same. The case with water molecules appears to be that minute
phasings in the quantum vacuum can travel between molecules faster than
the speed of light, at which the inter-molecular forces travel between the
molecules, thereby serving as a cue to maintain coherence.

In ecosystems, information can travel via light or other physical means
faster than the relationships among participating species interact, and so
coherence could be maintained via that route. In the brain,
electromagnetic waves that accompany electron and proton movements can
travel between neurons faster than synaptic signals (which take ca.
one-tenth of a second). Whence, I see a significant possibility that
consciousness represents a neuronal “coherence domain” quite in
abstraction from the subatomic quantum realm.

The notion of consciousness as a coherence domain has some attractiveness
when one notes that the subjective feeling of consciousness is one of
“awareness of everything at once”.

And so I would conclude that I think you are pursuing a worthwhile
hypothesis, but I would encourage you to think outside the envelope of
Planckian phenomena. As an example of how quantum homologs might be
treated at macroscopic scales, I would recommend the work of Dr. Diederik
Aerts


 at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel, and the ecological writings of his
associate Dr. Sandro Sozzo
.


I would urge other participants on FIS also to cast a critical eye upon
the efforts of many physicists to totalize cosmological behavior in terms
of quantum theory. The form may be universal, but IMHO the actual
phenomena are more likely particular to the scale of observation.

Peace,
Bob U.


> Dear Plamen,
>
> Thank you for the encouragement in the spirit of 'Fare Thee Well',
> rather than 'Adieu, Dear Friend, A..', I suspect.
>
> I am attaching my presentation with the qualification that:
>
> The first half of the presentation explicitly constructs a new information
> theory applying at the apex of biological control systems, showing how it
> conforms to properties of experience postulated by Kant, Husserl, Chalmers
> and others; the second half applies the information structure to
> human-animal mind-to-mind communications from recent decades.
>
> I hope that everyone will find this novel approach pertinent.
> All good wishes,
>
> Alex Hankey
>
>
> On 23 April 2016 at 13:45, Dr. Plamen L. Simeonov <
> plamen.l.simeo...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
>>
>>
>> Dear Pedro, Alex and Colleagues,
>>
>> thank you for this introduction of the next round on physics and
>> phenomenology with Alex' challenging theory. I’d like to share with
>> you a
>> curious blog by Phillip Ball which a friend dropped me earlier this
>> morning:
>> http://nautil.us/issue/35/boundaries/why-physics-is-not-a-discipline.
>>
>> Farewell, Alex!
>>
>> Plamen
>>
>>
>> ___
>> Fis mailing list
>> Fis@listas.unizar.es
>> http://listas.unizar.es/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/fis
>>
>>
>
>
> --
> Alex Hankey M.A. (Cantab.) PhD (M.I.T.)
> Distinguished Professor of Yoga and Physical Science,
> SVYASA, Eknath Bhavan, 19 Gavipuram Circle
> Bangalore 560019, Karnataka, India
> Mobile (Intn'l): +44 7710 534195
> Mobile (India) +91 900 800 8789
> 
>
> 2015 JPBMB Special Issue on Integral Biomathics: Life Sciences,
> Mathematics
> and Phenomenological Philosophy
> 

[Fis] _ Re:: Vol 25, #32, Nature of Self

2016-05-02 Thread Alex Hankey
It is good to note that Reductionism is not appropriate,
not in this particular context, maybe not in any context.

Most of the oriental philosophers were not aware of any
reductionist approach, since their teachers were purely
concerned with integrated and holistic approaches to
understanding and solving any problem.

Hence their attitudes to understanding experience"
the question of reductionism does not enter.
Thank you.

On 30 April 2016 at 22:15, Francesco Rizzo <13francesco.ri...@gmail.com>
wrote:

> Search Alex e Stan, Search Tutti,
> I fully share the epistemological philosophical-scientific approach of
> Alex and logical-mathematical set theory and / or the "hierarchy of
> subsumption evolving" Stan. However, reductionism does not satisfy
> neither pays.
> A collective embrace the FIS network.
> Francesco
>
> 2016-05-01 0:38 GMT+02:00 Alex Hankey :
>
>> It is good to see the discussion developing into deep considerations of
>> the history (histories?) of the metaphysical understanding of the nature of
>> the self, the soul, and the world(s) of experience, including the material
>> universe in which it finds itself.
>>
>> I do not claim to have any great expertise in understanding Nagarjuna's
>> approach, but we have to realise that both he and the great exponent of
>> Vedanta, Adishankara, also known as Shankaracharya (meaning teacher of
>> liberation), are said to have used almost identical formulations, albeit
>> with a different emphasis. While Nagarjuna used the concept of emptiness as
>> the foundation, Adishankara stayed within the traditional Vedic scheme
>> where 'fullness' or completeness / wholeness is regarded as fundamental.
>>
>> While it is certainly true that to experience the 'self' clearly, all
>> mental content has to allowed to settle down and fade away (one aspect of
>> 'Chitta Vritti Nirodha', a definition of Yoga) the condition for
>> maintaining that stably is that the subtle energy, prana (life-breath),
>> should be enlivened fully, which is why the enlivenment (ayama) of prana
>> i.e. pranaayama (normal spelling pranayama, in which the long 'a' is not
>> explicitly emphasised) is a fundamental Yoga exercise, usually practised
>> before meditation (Dhyana) practices in which the mind moves to its empty
>> state (samadhi). As can be seen, increasing the prana (life-energy) to a
>> state of fullness is thus an integral part of attaining a stable state of
>> pure consciousness (samadhi).
>>
>> It is the fullness of the state of prana that stabilizes the mind from
>> influences that might bring it out of samadhi. In particular, various
>> emotions can block the flows of subtle energies (several websites explain
>> this in detail e.g. Google on acupuncture meridians - emotions). Fullness
>> of prana is thus considered equivalent to emotional stability, which
>> requires balanced positive emotions and feelings.
>>
>> Both Nagarjuna and Adishankara are then concerned with how it is that
>> all-that-exists emerges from the original absolute. Nagarjuna evidently
>> shows that all things including all sentient beings have a 'dependent'
>> existence - they do not exist in and of themselves. Adishankara on the
>> other hand uses Vedic physics and metaphysics to trace how they emerge at
>> various levels of perception. The essence of his argument is to show how
>> the mental sensory apparatus came from the original source / Absolute, and
>> thus how all objects of sensation can be traced back there.
>>
>> In modern terms, all things we have ever experientially encountered are
>> quantum fields, and all quantum fields seem to have emerged from the Big
>> Bang via the process of symmetry breaking at its source - the inflationary
>> process. But symmetry breaking is an instability, and when one inspects the
>> information states that that instability supports, they turn out to have a
>> similar structure to O===>, the one proposed in the material that was
>> distributed.
>>
>> I feel that the role and significance of instabilities in the physical
>> world, particularly life processes, has not been adequately expounded and
>> that we may only be beginning to understand them.
>>
>> I hope this helps.
>>
>> Alex
>>
>> On 30 April 2016 at 08:18, steven bindeman  wrote:
>>
>>> I hope the following passage I’ve written on Nagarjuna will be of use
>>> for this discussion on the nature of self. The passage is from a manuscript
>>> I’ve just completed on silence and postmodernism.
>>>
>>> Nagarjuna’s thinking is deeply conversant with silence and with the use
>>> of paradox as well. For him, contradictory things are never “either/or,”
>>> but are always “both/and.” Refusing to choose between opposing metaphysical
>>> problems, he would recommend responding through silence instead. For an
>>> example of his reductive reasoning process, consider the following:
>>>
>>> Whatever is dependently co-arisen
>>> That is explained to be emptiness.
>>> That, 

[Fis] FIS Discussion (No Vol #)

2016-05-02 Thread Alex Hankey
RE Bruno Marchal: It is easier to explain the illusion of matter to
something conscious than to explain the illusion of consciousness to
something material.

ME: At the Consciousness Conference I found it extraordinary that at least
one plenary presentation was centered round treating the wave function as a
real entity in the (strongly) objective sense.

I was under the impression that Bernard D'Espagnat's work for which he
received the Templeton Prize had definitively shown that nothing is
'objectively real' in the strongly objective sense. The definite existence
of quantum correlations destroys all that.

Once this is accepted, the enquirer is faced with the question of what to
accept as fundamental. I have always considered 'information' in the sense
of the process or flow that connects the observed to the observer as a
satisfactory alternative. The process of information flow creates the
observer-observed relationship and (the illusion of??) their separation.

Sequences of information production made possible by lack of equilibrium,
both mechanical and thermodynamic, create pictures of particle tracks at
the microscopic level, and pictures of objects at the macroscopic level.
Everything is made consistent by the existence of quantum correlations in
mathematical ways use by Everett in the book on the Many Worlds
interpretation by Bryce De Witt (note that I use the mathematics, but do
not concur with the interpretation).

In my approach, the universe continuously makes choices, and selects among
its own futures. I had a lengthy conversation with Henry Stapp two days ago
at the conference after his talk, and checked that he still approves of
this approach.

My best to all,

Alex

P.S. Thanks to all for making this such a rich and interesting discussion.

-- 
Alex Hankey M.A. (Cantab.) PhD (M.I.T.)
Distinguished Professor of Yoga and Physical Science,
SVYASA, Eknath Bhavan, 19 Gavipuram Circle
Bangalore 560019, Karnataka, India
Mobile (Intn'l): +44 7710 534195
Mobile (India) +91 900 800 8789


2015 JPBMB Special Issue on Integral Biomathics: Life Sciences, Mathematics
and Phenomenological Philosophy

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