Danneskjold

Schrodinger's Cat

Recommended Posts

Paul,

In response to your last post, I more or less agree. What is often missed is that we have a 'natural' or 'built-in" philosophy or common sense that helps us understand things but can also lead to error.

Building an immutable philosophical system and essentially forcing reality to conform is bass-ackwards. In reality our philosophical systems are dictated by reality and not vice versa. Objectivism seems to pay lip-service to this idea, but in practice its adherents violate this all the time, including Rand herself.

The whole idea that science or progress has to be rooted in an overt philosophical model or foundation is only partially and weakly true. Science, observation, and reality can and should be used to change philosophical ideas just as much or perhaps more than philosophy affects science. Philosophy is simply not as fundamental as some would have us believe.

Fundamental physics research is just as much Philosophical research as scientific.

Bob

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bob,

I see different lenses from which to view the world, each with its own unique angle and set of integrations. Integrations formed by viewing the world through one lens can provide information and guidance to generating new integrations in another. Philosophy can inform the scientific lens (or models) and science can inform philosophical lens (or models). The causally reciprocal relationship can advance knowledge in both.

For me, the attraction of Einstein is the philosophical lens through which he viewed the physical world. Unfortunately for him, this is what pushed him away from the rest of the physics world. Modern physics seems to be missing the philosophical lens that brilliant pioneers like Einstein brought to integrating evidence.

Here is an idea of Einstein's perspective of the philosophical fashion in modern physics that arose from its Copenhagen beginnings:

A friend of Einstein's, Philipp Frank, relates Einstein's view :

"A new fashion has now arisen in physics. By means of ingeniously formulated theoretical experiments it is proved that certain physical magnitudes cannot be measured, or, to put it more precisely, that according to accepted natural laws the investigated bodies behave in such a way as to baffle all attempts at measurement. From this the conclusion is drawn that it is completely meaningless to retain these magnitudes in the language of physics. To speak about them is pure metaphysics."

Einstein later told Leopold Infield, "I may have started [the fashion], but I regarded these ideas as temporary, I never thought that others would take them so much more seriously than I did."

To Max Born, Einstein wrote, "Quantum mechanics is certainly imposing. But an inner voice tells me that it is not yet the real thing."

In a letter to Herbert Samuel, Einstein wrote:

"You have rightly underlined that these [statistical] physicists do not distinguish between observed and objectively existing facts. There is no causality regarding the first; to have shown this is one of their greatest merits. Whether the objective facts are subject to causality is a question, the answer to which necessarily depends on the theory from which we start. Therefore, it will never be possible to decide whether the world is causal or not. Up to now we possess for the description of atomic events only a statistical theory. But if we should succeed in constructing a theory of deterministic character, based on less independent suppositions than the present statistical physics, nobody will insist on sustaining the latter as a base of physics. I must confess that I am convinced that this possibility will be realized." (R. W. Clark, 1971.)

I do not fully agree with Einstein's philosophical lens but I think it leads far closer to the right direction than the path taken by modern physics. Einstein seems to equate causation with determinism. I don't. This is where I am more inclined to agree with Rand and Branden. The point is, philosophy has a profound impact on how we integrate and interpret the evidence. While I do not deny any of the evidence or mathematical descriptions of the physical world that have been produced by modern physics, I'm more in alignment with Einstein's philosophical lens than the one that has shaped modern physics. It's the philosophical lens and the model of existence that has emerged from modern physics that I question.

Paul

Edited by Paul Mawdsley

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For the record, I have just skimmed through this thread, but read each and every one of Dragonfly's comments. For those of you who might think that I always disagree with him, I found his comments very knowledgeable and astute in this thread. I greatly enjoyed the experience.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Building an immutable philosophical system and essentially forcing reality to conform is bass-ackwards. In reality our philosophical systems are dictated by reality and not vice versa. Objectivism seems to pay lip-service to this idea, but in practice its adherents violate this all the time, including Rand herself.

The whole idea that science or progress has to be rooted in an overt philosophical model or foundation is only partially and weakly true. Science, observation, and reality can and should be used to change philosophical ideas just as much or perhaps more than philosophy affects science. Philosophy is simply not as fundamental as some would have us believe.

Fundamental physics research is just as much Philosophical research as scientific.

Bob,

For the sake of being argumentative and drawing this out as long as possible --- just kidding --- I must point out that you seem to be trying to have it both ways. The statement, "In reality our philosophical systems are dictated by reality and not vice versa," is, in essence, a statement of the primacy of existence. It is a statement that existence exists and that our philosophy (and science) is knowledge of reality and must be consistent with reality. But that is the Objectivist view and the view that I have been arguing for since the beginning.

In addition, the quoted statement is a fundamental philosophical statement that underpins all knowledge. Yet, later you state that, "philosophy is simply not as fundamental as some would have us believe." So, which is it? Is it possible to make sweeping philosophical generalization about the source of all knowledge, as you have done above? Or, is philosophy simply not that fundamental?

If I have exaggerated the import of the one statement that I quoted, additional support comes from your statement, "Science, observation, and reality can and should be used to change philosophical ideas just as much or perhaps more than philosophy affects science." Although this statement is not clean, the first part of the statement again admits that existence exists and that man's means of knowledge of existence is through observation. These are again sweeping philosophical statements consistent with Objectivism.

I really don't understand why you think that the Objectivist view, that existence exists and that man's means of knowing existence is through observation, is either constraining or debatable. Finer points of the philosophy, such as the nature of causality, may be debatable, and the original intention of my initial post was to debate them. To that extent, I agree that science can inform philosophy in important ways.

Darrell

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'm still learning the formal language to talk about these subjects. I will take your lead and refer to the distinction between the two modes of reason as "predicate logic" and "mathematical logic."

Predicate logic generally refers to quantified statements of propositional logic. Propositional logic is a set of formal statements such as (A and (B or C)) <=> ((A and B ) or (A and C)), which in English means that if A is true and either B or C is true then either A and B are true or A and C are true and vice versa. There are several basic statements that capture all of the fundamental ways in which propositions can be combined. All other statements of propositional logic can be derived from those.

A statement in predicate logic (or predicate calculus) is of the form, forall x, A(x) => B(x). That is, for all values of x (in the domain of consideration), if A is true for x, then be is true for x. Predicate logic inherits all the statements of propositional logic and adds variable quantification, e.g., "for all" or "there exists" to those statements.

To state that a logic is "formal" is to state that the the set of logical operations that can be performed on a set of statements depends only upon the form of the statements and not upon the meaning of any of the symbols. Therefore, "true" and "false" are also content free notions. A statement is "true" if it can be derived from a set of initial "axioms" that are taken to be true. It is "false" if its negation can be derived. If neither the statement nor its negation can be derived, then the statement is neither "true" nor "false."

I have used the term "mathematical logic" relatively loosely. If we are discussing the formal logic of arithmetic, then "mathematical logic" refers to predicate logic with a set of mathematical axioms designed to capture the basics of arithmetic. So, formal arithmetic logic is a superset of predicate logic.

I have also use the term "mathematical logic" to refer to the general process of reasoning about mathematics, whether based upon formal axiomatic systems or not. It is in this process that new notions are sometimes added to mathematics that could not be derived from any existing sets of axioms. It is in this process that mathematicians attach meaning to the symbols of mathematics or, conversely, the introduce symbols for the concepts that they wish to capture. In this process, the activities of physicists and other scientists also overlap those of mathematicians.

So, to restate what I have stated previously, formal mathematics does not depend upon external reality because it doesn't say anything about external reality. The "truth" or "falsehood" of statements depends only upon formal relationships between symbols. Such statements may extend to numbers and therefore may be an exception to what I said previously, since numbers are meaningful and yet can be manipulated in purely formal ways. However, I did give an example of a possible universe, though clearly not our universe, in which numbers were of limited use because there was never more than one of anything.

Darrell

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Bob,

For the sake of being argumentative and drawing this out as long as possible --- just kidding --- I must point out that you seem to be trying to have it both ways. The statement, "In reality our philosophical systems are dictated by reality and not vice versa," is, in essence, a statement of the primacy of existence. It is a statement that existence exists and that our philosophy (and science) is knowledge of reality and must be consistent with reality. But that is the Objectivist view and the view that I have been arguing for since the beginning.

In addition, the quoted statement is a fundamental philosophical statement that underpins all knowledge. Yet, later you state that, "philosophy is simply not as fundamental as some would have us believe." So, which is it? Is it possible to make sweeping philosophical generalization about the source of all knowledge, as you have done above? Or, is philosophy simply not that fundamental?

If I have exaggerated the import of the one statement that I quoted, additional support comes from your statement, "Science, observation, and reality can and should be used to change philosophical ideas just as much or perhaps more than philosophy affects science." Although this statement is not clean, the first part of the statement again admits that existence exists and that man's means of knowledge of existence is through observation. These are again sweeping philosophical statements consistent with Objectivism.

I really don't understand why you think that the Objectivist view, that existence exists and that man's means of knowing existence is through observation, is either constraining or debatable. Finer points of the philosophy, such as the nature of causality, may be debatable, and the original intention of my initial post was to debate them. To that extent, I agree that science can inform philosophy in important ways.

Darrell

"is, in essence, a statement of the primacy of existence."

No, that's not what I'm saying.

"But that is the Objectivist view and the view that I have been arguing for since the beginning. "

In word it seems, but not in practice. This is the source of my frustration. I have seen many Objectivists argue that a model/theory must be wrong (like QM) because it defies the law of identity or causality or some other nonsense. In essense they say that the world can't be that way because it contradicts my 'perfect and immutable' philosophy. That in my opinion is completely backwards.

"Or, is philosophy simply not that fundamental?"

Objectivism certainly isn't. There are so many holes, problems and contradictions that all we have to do is take a cursory look at reality to know that Objectivism is in violation of reality.

In word, reason and reality shape Objectivism. In practice, rhetoric and Rand define it, with very little honest self-critique of its problems. Objectivism SAYS reality first, but that's clearly not the case.

Bob

P.S. Not sure if this matters, but my first quote:

"In reality our philosophical systems are dictated by reality and not vice versa,"

The word "are" should really have been "Should"

Edited by Bob_Mac

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bob,

I'm not sure how to respond to your post. What you say is both trivially true in some respects and at the same time insulting to both Objectivism and Objectivists.

It is undoubtedly true that some Objectivists, from time to time, put up unsatisfactory arguments for their beliefs or may be mistaken in one way or another about Objectivism or about reality in general. However, the same could be said of physicists. If some physicists propose incorrect or contradictory theories of physics or of reality, should we dismiss the entire pursuit of physics? Is physics as a whole to be considered invalid simply because of the incorrect or invalid theories put forth by some physicists? For you to simply dismiss and sweep aside the entire philosophy of Objectivism, which is undoubtedly correct in many important respects, would be like me dismissing the entire field physics just because of some ill-conceived ideas, some of which we have discussed in the foregoing pages.

You state that, "There are so many holes, problems and contradictions that all we have to do is take a cursory look at reality to know that Objectivism is in violation of reality." Yet, you have not been able to produce a single hole, problem or contradiction in Objectivism about which we could have a meaningful discussion.

You imply that the laws of identity and causality are nonsense, yet there is no evidence that the laws (if provision is made for random events, as I have been trying to do) are ever violated. It appears that you agree that reality is primary, which is the most important feature of the Objectivist metaphysics and yet you dismiss all of Objectivism and offer in its place Coherentism, which, as far as I can tell, has nothing to offer to the discussion.

Darrell

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Yet, you have not been able to produce a single hole, problem or contradiction in Objectivism about which we could have a meaningful discussion.

Do you want to go there? That's a serious question, because I'll go there. Now, this is out of the scope of the current physics context of course, but I'll go there if you want to discuss it further.

Bob

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Yet, you have not been able to produce a single hole, problem or contradiction in Objectivism about which we could have a meaningful discussion.
Do you want to go there? That's a serious question, because I'll go there. Now, this is out of the scope of the current physics context of course, but I'll go there if you want to discuss it further.

Sure. Why not? I'm always interested in learning new things. If it is not relevant to the current thread, it would be better to create a new topic and if it is not an issue of meta-physics, it would be good to post it in the appropriate location. BTW, I do believe there are some serious limitations to Objectivism (as there are in any system of thought), but I would like to know what you think they are.

Darrell

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
In other words "What quantum mechanics tell us is that nothing is real and that we cannot say anything about what things are doing when we are not looking at them. "

So it seems the Copenhagen interpretation of QM is not compatible with Objectivism.

Bob

Fortunately, the interpretation is NOT the theory. Quantum theory in its latest from as a second renormalized theory is the most successful physical theory ever formulated. Its main defect is that it does not deal with gravitation. There are other interpretations, none of which sit comfortably with our man-scaled intuitions. So even if the theory is counter-intuitive and collides with our philosophical expectations, never the less it works and and works superlatively.

If it works, use it. If it ain't broke don't fix it. If it smiles at you, smile back.

Ba'al Chatzaf

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just moved this topic from "Metaphysics" to here because it seems more science-related. I also wanted to find a place for a link to a delightful breakdown of the different interpretations of quantum physics (for future reference).

A Lazy Layman's Guide to Quantum Physics by James Higgo (1999)

I am reproducing it below just in case his site ever goes down. This is just too precious to let pass (but I will contact the author). I have reformatted parts for better viewing on the forum format.

A Lazy Layman's Guide to Quantum Physics

James Higgo 1999

What is Quantum Physics?

That's an easy one: it's the science of things so small that the quantum nature of reality has an effect. Quantum means 'discrete amount' or 'portion'. Max Planck discovered in 1900 that you couldn't get smaller than a certain minimum amount of anything. This minimum amount is now called the Planck unit.

Why is it weird?

Niels Bohr, the father of the orthodox 'Copenhagen Interpretation' of quantum physics once said, "Anyone who is not shocked by quantum theory has not understood it".

To understand the weirdness completely, you just need to know about three experiments: Light Bulb, Two Slits, Schroedinger's Cat.

Two Slits

The simplest experiment to demonstrate quantum weirdness involves shining a light through two parallel slits and looking at the screen. It can be shown that a single photon (particle of light) can interfere with itself, as if it travelled through both slits at once.

Light Bulb

Imagine a light bulb filament gives out a photon, seemingly in a random direction. Erwin Schroedinger came up with a nine-letter-long equation that correctly predicts the chances of finding that photon at any given point. He envisaged a kind of wave, like a ripple from a pebble dropped into a pond, spreading out from the filament. Once you look at the photon, this 'wavefunction' collapses into the single point at which the photon really is.

Schroedinger's Cat

In this experiment, we take your pet cat and put it in a box with a bottle of cyanide. We rig it up so that a detector looks at an isolated electron and determines whether it is 'spin up' or 'spin down' (it can have either characteristic, seemingly at random). If it is 'spin up', then the bottle is opened and the cat gets it. Ten minutes later we open the box and see if the cat is alive or dead. The question is: what state is the cat in between the detector being activated and you opening the box. Nobody has actually done this experiment (to my knowledge) but it does show up a paradox that arises in certain interpretations.

If you dare to think about it (you're not really supposed to), you have to believe one of the following things:

MENU

Your consciousness affects the behaviour of subatomic particles

- or -

Particles move backwards as well as forwards in time and appear in all possible places at once

- or -

The universe is splitting, every Planck-time (10 E-43 seconds) into billions of parallel universes

- or -

The universe is interconnected with faster-than-light transfers of information

----

Full English Breakfast

Coffee or Tea

These are the results of the different interpretations of quantum physics. The interpretations all compete with each other. Otherwise respectable physicists can get quite heated about how sensible their pet interpretation is and how crazy all the others are. At the moment, there's about one new interpretation every three months, but most of them fit into these categories.

What does it mean?

The meaning of quantum physics is a bit of a taboo subject, but everyone thinks about it. To make it all a bit more respectable, it is better to say 'ontology' than 'meaning' -- it's the same thing. There are several competing interpretations and the one thing they all have in common is that each of them explains all the facts and predicts every experiment's outcome correctly.

Copenhagen Interpretation (CI)

This is the granddaddy of interpretations, championed by the formidable Niels Bohr of Copenhagen university. He browbeat all dissenters into submission (with the notable exception of Einstein) at a Brussels conference sponsored by a man called Solvay in 1927. Bohr thereby stifled the debate for a generation or two.

The CI has a bit of a cheek calling itself an interpretation, because it essentially says "thou shalt not ask what happens before ye look". He pointed out that the Schroedinger equation worked as a tool for calculating where the particle would be, except that it 'collapsed' as soon as you took a peek. If anyone asked why this was, he would say, "shut up and calculate" (or he might as well have done).

When you do try to take Copenhagen seriously you come to the conclusion that consciousness and particle physics are inter-related, and you rush off to write a book called The Dancing Wu-Li Masters.

More recently, Henry Stapp at the University of California has written papers such as On Quantum Theories of the Mind (1997). Stapp's central thesis is that the synapses in your brain are so small that quantum effects are significant. This means that there is quantum uncertainty about whether a neuron will fire or not - and this degree of freedom that nature has allows for the interaction of mind and matter.

What happens to the cat? You're not allowed to ask.

Many Worlds Interpretation (MWI)

The various paradoxes that the Copenhagen Interpretation gave rise to (famously Schroedinger's cat, and Einstein's dislike of "spooky action at a distance") led others to keep on trying to find a better interpretation.

The simplest was put forward by a student, Hugh Everett, in 1957. He simply said that the Schroedinger equation does not collapse. Of course, everyone laughed at him, because they could see that the photon, for example, was in just one place when they looked, not in all possible places. But after a couple of decades, this issue was resolved with the concept of decoherence - the idea that different universes can very quickly branch apart, so that there is very little relationship between them after a tiny fraction of a second.

This has led to what should strictly be called the 'post-Everett' Interpretation, but is still usually called MWI. It is now one of the most popular interpretations and has won some impromptu beauty contests at physics conferences. Unfortunately it means that billions of you are splitting off every fraction of a second into discrete universes and it implies that everything possible exists in one universe or another. This comes up with its own set of hard-to-digest concepts, such as the fact that a 500-year-old you exists in some universes, whereas in others you died at birth.

In 1997, Max Tegmark at Princeton University proposed an experiment to prove that MWI was correct. It involved pointing a loaded gun at your head and pulling the trigger. Of course, you will only survive in those universes where the gun, for whatever reason, fails to go off. If you get a misfire every time, you can satisfy yourself -- with an arbitrarily high level of confidence -- that MWI is true. Of course, in most universes your family will be weeping at your funeral (or possibly just shaking their heads and muttering).

What happens to the cat? It's dead in half the subsequent universes and alive in the other half.

Pilot Waves, Hidden Variables and the Implicate Order

David Bohm (1917-1992) was a very brilliant physicist and that's why people went along with him when he came up with an elegant but more complicated theory to explain the same set of phenomena (normally, more complicated theories are disqualified by the principle known as Ockham's Razor).

Bohm's theory follows on some original insights by Prince Louis de Broglie (1892-1987), who first studied the wave-like properties of the behaviour of particles in 1924. De Broglie suggested that, in addition to the normal wavefunction of the Copenhagen Interpretation, there is a second wave that determines a precise position for the particle at any particular time. In this theory, there is some 'hidden variable' that determines the precise position of the photon.

Sadly, John von Neumann (1903-1957) wrote a paper in 1932 proving that this theory was impossible. Von Neumann was such a great mathematician that nobody bothered to check his maths until 1966, when John Bell (1928-1990) proved he'd bodged it and there could be hidden variables after all -- but only if particles could communicate faster than light (this is called 'nonlocality'). In 1982 Alain Aspect demonstrated that this superluminal signaling did appear to exist, although David Mermin then showed that you could not actually signal anything. There is still some argument about whether this means very much.

Bohm's theory was that the second wave was indeed faster than light, and moreover it did not get weaker with distance but instantly permeated the entire universe, acting as a guide for the movement of the photon. This is why it is called a 'pilot wave'.

This theory explains the paradoxes of quantum physics perfectly. But it introduces a new faster-than-light wave and some hidden mechanism for deciding where it goes -- to create an 'implicate order'. That's quite a lot of extra baggage, and scientists like to travel light. Worse still, Bohm went on to become a mystic, identifying his 'implicate order' with Eastern spirituality and spawning books like Fritjof Capra's The Tao of Physics. That's heretical behaviour in the eyes of any decent physicist.

What happens to the cat? It's either dead or alive, of course!

Consistent Histories

The Consistent Histories interpretation, put forward by Robert Griffiths in 1984, works backwards from the result of an experiment, arguing that only a few possible histories are consistent with the rules of quantum mechanics. It's an interesting idea but not very popular because it still doesn't explain how a particle can go through two slits and interfere with itself. Roland Omns, in The Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics (1994) wrote down 80 equations in a single chapter and came to the conclusion that the 'consistent histories' interpretation was pretty much the same as Copenhagen, with a few knobs on.

What happens to the Cat? Again, you're not supposed to ask.

Alternate Histories

The Alternate Histories Interpretation is quite different, being similar to the Many-Worlds Interpretation, but with the insistence that only the actual outcome is the real world and the ones we're not in don't actually exist. Unfortunately this gets us right back to their being some kind of 'collapse'.

What happens to the cat? Again, you're not supposed to ask.

Time Reversibility

Richard Feynman (1918-1988) was a genius who developed a new approach to quantum mechanics. He formalised its crowning achievement, Quantum Electrodynamics, which is the most accurate scientific theory ever devised. He also developed the Feynman Diagram, which represents the interaction of two particles as the exchange of a third particle. This diagram has time on one axis and space on the other and the interaction can be viewed as happening both in forward and in reverse time.

An electron, on its way from point A to point B, can bump into a photon. In the diagram this can be drawn as sending it backwards not just in space, but also in time. Then it bumps into another photon, which sends it forward in time again, but in a different direction in space. In this way, it can be in two places at once.

There is little doubt that a Feynman diagram offers the easiest way to predict the results of a subatomic experiment. Many physicists have seen the power of this tool and taken the next step, arguing that reverse time travel is what actually happens in reality. Victor Stenger of the University of Hawaii argues strongly for this ontology in his forthcoming book. Of course, for a layman, it is hard to understand why a photon bounces around in such a way that it appears in two slits at once.

What happens to the Cat? It is both dead and alive simultaneously. We don't see this because of the macroscopic 'measurement problem'.

Transactional Interpretation

Like Stenger's, John Cramer's Transactional Interpretation relies on the fundamental time-symmetry of the universe. He argues that particles perform a kind of 'handshake' in the course of interacting. One sends out a wave forward in time, and another sends one out backwards in time.

What happens to the Cat? Ermm...

Gremlins

A new interpretation, presented for the first time here, is that there are little green gremlins hovering around, going backwards and forwards in time, shaking hands and collapsing with mirth as they poke and prod subatomic particles in a way they calculate most likely to confuse us. This explains all of the observed experimental results, but it does introduce gremlins, and the need for a further theory about why they should want to confuse us. Using the principle of Ockham's razor, this interpretation will probably not find much popularity among the scientific community although it may be the basis for a new religion. Watch this space.

What happens to the Cat? Depends on what the gremlins think will confuse us most.

Michael

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Really, as I see it, "Objectivism", shouldn't care either way what happens at the sub-atomic scales, or how physicists come to describe those events. "Objectivism" is a philosophic framework which is rooted in the human context and the human scale. The puzzles presented by QM, or even relativity for that matter, are well outside the human domain, and as I see it, really don't have much of an impact on the veracity (or not) of Rand's thinking about the human and his place in the universe.

RCR

I was going to say something similar to this. The science of QM didn't exist for all practical purposes when Rand was alive and she certainly wasn't a physicist. At the end of the day, RCR is right in that no matter how much QM may differ from the classical model, WE as humans are the same as we've always been. We've simply discovered more about the universe and the sub-atomic world since Rand's time. She had no knowledge of QM and neither did anyone else at the time, but the principles that she applied to the human condition can still be applied whether or not objectivism supports QM.

I don't think it does, by the way. The experimental discoveries in QM over the years have flown in the face of classical physics the same way the Coperican universe overturned the Ptolemic universe and how general relativity turned some Newtonian physics on its head. Objectivism doesn't explain EVERYTHING, it explains what Rand observed and she never observed anything at the subatomic level. If it did, no one would be looking for the Grand Unifying Theory of Everything and last time I checked, they still are.

Simply SAYING "existence exists" doesn't make it so, it's supported by empirical evidence in most cases. That evidence is based on the phyiscal laws of the classical model of physics because that was the limit of human knowledge when she coined the phrase. When those laws no longer apply, when causality breaks down, as in some instances in QM, then necessarily the premise "existence exists" may not always be true.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Shadesofgrey:

Does your moniker refer to your age status or the metaphysical middle ground between black and white?

Interesting issue.

Therefore, how would we define non-"E", if "E" = existence?

Or describe it?

Adam

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Shadesofgrey:

Does your moniker refer to your age status or the metaphysical middle ground between black and white?

Interesting issue.

Therefore, how would we define non-"E", if "E" = existence?

Or describe it?

Adam

The middle ground. I've been lucky not to find any grey hairs as of yet :) The non-E issue is what I was getting at. If we don't know what we don't know, I can't think of a good way to describe what we don't know.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Shadesofgrey:

Does your moniker refer to your age status or the metaphysical middle ground between black and white?

Interesting issue.

Therefore, how would we define non-"E", if "E" = existence?

Or describe it?

Adam

The middle ground. I've been lucky not to find any grey hairs as of yet :) The non-E issue is what I was getting at. If we don't know what we don't know, I can't think of a good way to describe what we don't know.

I thought so. The is the Landmark Forum, later day version of the Werner Erhard's, a.k.a. John Paul Rosenberg, 1960's est training/transformational paradigm. One of the litany's is we don't know what we don't know - which in their diagram is about 80% or so.

Very effective in "shaking" the mind loose from the pre-conceived stuff they do know that they know! It is semantic judo refined to a potent sales seminar.

Adam

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...