Something Instead of Nothing

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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby surreptitious75 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 7:57 pm

An eternal morality is one that changes over time with the acquisition of new knowledge and experience

When I was a young man I was always right and everyone else was always wrong and everything was just black and white
Now I am an old man and I am not interested in right and wrong or black and white because everything is shades of grey
I look into the abyss and I do not like what I see but I have no choice but to look at it because what I am looking at is me
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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby surreptitious75 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 9:48 pm

iambiguous wrote:
You assert that this fear of death is irrational and that talking about death makes it go away

And yet there are any number of others [ like me ] who react to this dumbfounded . How can anyone actually manage to think themselves into believing it ?

We are all afraid of different things : I am afraid of worms and heights and dentists but I am not afraid of death
I have nothing to lose by dying which may be why I am not afraid of it but whatever the reason I am perfectly calm about it so have no anxiety
I cannot make you any less afraid of death than you already are no more than you can make me any less afraid of worms or heights or dentists

You want to overcome a fear of anything then only you can do that because only you have that fear so the responsibility is yours
Of course others might have the same fear as you but their fear only affects them as yours only affects you so it is all subjective
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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby surreptitious75 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 9:58 pm

iambiguous wrote:
You may even manage to take it all the way to the grave

After that well who the fuck really knows ?

What happens beyond the grave is not something I worry about because I have no reason to
For me death is nothing more than just a transition from consciousness to non consciousness

I have no problem passing very slowly into a state of non existence as I would want that anyway had I the choice
Also I was in that state forever before I was conceived so all I am doing is simply returning to where I came from
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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby iambiguous » Tue Jan 29, 2019 12:34 am

surreptitious75 wrote:
iambiguous wrote:
You may even manage to take it all the way to the grave

After that well who the fuck really knows ?

What happens beyond the grave is not something I worry about because I have no reason to
For me death is nothing more than just a transition from consciousness to non consciousness

I have no problem passing very slowly into a state of non existence as I would want that anyway had I the choice
Also I was in that state forever before I was conceived so all I am doing is simply returning to where I came from


Again, you have managed to think yourself into a frame of mind that I would imagine is considerably comforting and considerably consoling.

So your best bet is to avoid narratives like mine altogether. After all, what if I begin to make sense?!

All that carefully crafted reasoning may well begin to...crumble.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby surreptitious75 » Wed Jan 30, 2019 2:24 am

I adapt the narrative that is the most convincing not the most consoling as this is of no consequence to me
And should you therefore convince me I am wrong and you and are right I will adapt your narrative instead

I know nothing and so claiming certainty about anything is unwise which is why I need to have an open mind
I will always know nothing regardless of what I actually think which is why I am interested in all possibilities
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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby iambiguous » Wed Jan 30, 2019 4:57 pm

Larry Curley in Philosophy Now magazine

The easiest way to show that there must be something rather than nothing is to try to define nothing. Nothing must have no properties: No size. No shape. No position. No mass-energy, forces, wave forms, or anything else you can think of. No time, no past, no present, no future. And finally, no existence. Therefore there must be something. And this is it.


Sure, why not. I exist therefore I define things. But suppose you define "nothing" in another way?

Or maybe just the fact that I exist to define things is as far as one need go.

But defining "something" as that which encompasses "properties" that do exist tells us absolutely nothing about why they do. In other words, why they must exist.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby iambiguous » Wed Jan 30, 2019 5:23 pm

surreptitious75 wrote: I adapt the narrative that is the most convincing not the most consoling as this is of no consequence to me
And should you therefore convince me I am wrong and you and are right I will adapt your narrative instead


Okay, we can chalk it all up to serendipity. By coincidence that which you construe to be the most convincing frame of mind is also the most consoling.

Only human psychology can be tricky. The part that revolves around defense mechanisms can persuade you [subconsciously? unconsciously?] to embrace the most soothing frame of mind.

I don't even pretend anymore to fully understood how these things all unfold given the complexity of the human brain melding into mind melding into "I" out in a particular world.

Still, what seems most important is that which you are [here and now] able to think yourself into believing is true.

Here, you can, I can't.

Just out of curiosity, how many times in the past has someone actually been able to convince you that you were wrong about your narrative? Me? Well, atheists convinced me not to be a theist, Communists convinced me not to be a capitalist, Trotskyists convinced me not to be a Leninist, Social Democrats convinced me not to be a socialist, existentialists convinced me not to be an objectivist, nihilists convinced me not to put too much stock in any "ism" at all. Including nihilism itself. Instead, I came to be convinced that "I" is basically just an existential contraption ever and always subject to re-fabrication in a world of contingency, chance and change.

surreptitious75 wrote: I know nothing and so claiming certainty about anything is unwise which is why I need to have an open mind
I will always know nothing regardless of what I actually think which is why I am interested in all possibilities


Here I still make that crucial distinction between those things [seeming facts] that exist for all of us in the either/or world and those things which seem to exist more "in my head" [subject-ively] in both the is/ought world and in discussions that go out to the very end of the metaphysical limb.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby iambiguous » Fri Feb 08, 2019 8:53 pm

D.E. Tarkington from Philosophy Now magazine.

is there something rather than nothing? I vouch for ‘play’. Bear with me. Sartre writes in Being and Nothingness that a perfect nothingness would nihilate itself. It’s as if there is something in nothingness that must become something. So imagine, if you will, a pre-Big-Bang cosmic boredom. Now imagine it, in some fundamental way, seeking to become something. This implies a kind of experimentation, or play, for the sake of seeing what happens. And how can there be any ‘seeing’ without consciousness, which is as removed from nothing as anything could be?


What this encompasses is the classic example of a "general description" "Intellectual contraption" in regard to assessments of things like this.

It's more or less a "thought experiment" in which the words precipitate certain assumptions about existence that we appear to have no way in which to either verify or falsify. Experimentally for example. Or experientially.

But we let that slide because, well, what else is there?

Still, it suggests the way in which "worlds of words" can be used as a substitute for demonstrable proof. And for things [relationships] considerably less "metaphysical".

Everything seems to exist for the sake of being perceived. Consider, for instance, secondary qualities such as light and sound. While we can easily imagine a universe of form and extension – primary qualities – without consciousness (specifically, without being perceived), secondary qualities are different. If a tree falls in the forest and no one’s around to hear it, it doesn’t make sound as much as disturb the air. The same goes for light: neither color nor sound exist without being perceived.


Here is another aspect of conscious existence that boggles the minds of some more than others. What does it mean to ponder/probe existence in the absense of minds able to? How would/could the universe be approached and/or grappled with in the absense of entities able to perceive it?

That's why God must come into play:

So why all this rather than nothing? To see what happens? Experimentation, perhaps? Play? In this sense, all perceiving things can be thought of as the eyes and ears of God.


Of course, that's an explanation for everything. For anything. Other than in explaining why God and not No God. So God necessarily becomes the equivalent of existence. If only in the minds of those entities able to perceive something rather than nothing at all.

Then consciousness itself:

...consciousness distances us from nothing. So we can assume that the more it evolves, the further it removes itself from that nothing.


Only here we are confronted with the final imponderable. While human consciousness continues to evolve further and further away from nothing at all, each individual conscious "I" continues to topple over into the abyss that is...what exactly?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby iambiguous » Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:03 pm

Mike Addison in Philosophy Now

...attributing a purpose to the laws of nature fails to appreciate the sort of thing those laws and the Universe that results are. The seeking of a purpose for all things, by the questioners we have become, reflects not something out there in what led to our creation, but something internal we use to organize our short lives within this magnificent creation.


And around and around we go. Whatever can explain the existence of something is only there to be explained because this something has evolved into the existing entities that we encompass in "I". And, try as we might, nothing has ever really been explained at all regarding why there is even a how to be discovered.

Also, the part about how some are considerably more fascinated by this than others. Or those who can even be disturbed by the fact of existing as this infinitesimally insignificant speck without any understanding of the point of it all.

At best they can speculate that maybe -- maybe -- it will all become clearer when they are dead and gone.

Is creation "magnificent"? Or, in the context of all there is, is that just another essentially meaningless word that specks of our ilk thought up only because for whatever reason it is something that we could think up?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby iambiguous » Wed Feb 13, 2019 6:19 pm

The Science Channel just aired the following documentary. It is clearly pertinent to this thread:

https://www.sciencechannel.com/tv-shows ... lly-happen?

Bottom line: The Big Bang is only one possible narrative attempting to explain the existence of Somethingness. And we really have no true understanding at all of the relationship between this and nothing at all.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby Prismatic567 » Thu Feb 14, 2019 4:56 am

iambiguous wrote:The Science Channel just aired the following documentary. It is clearly pertinent to this thread:

https://www.sciencechannel.com/tv-shows ... lly-happen?

Bottom line: The Big Bang is only one possible narrative attempting to explain the existence of Somethingness. And we really have no true understanding at all of the relationship between this and nothing at all.

Note Science makes the fundamental assumption [note assumption!] there is always something.
This assumption is taken for granted in Science, thus there is no way Science will ever prove there is something instead of nothing.

Science is limited and what is meta-Science is philosophy.
From the perspective of philosophy, it is impossible to prove whether there is something instead of nothing or nothing instead of something. Thus as Wittgenstein proposed, we should just shut up whereof one cannot speak of.
I am a progressive human being, a World Citizen, NOT-a-theist and not religious.
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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby iambiguous » Sat Feb 16, 2019 8:26 pm

Prismatic567 wrote:
Note Science makes the fundamental assumption [note assumption!] there is always something.
This assumption is taken for granted in Science, thus there is no way Science will ever prove there is something instead of nothing.


When grappling with the very existence of existence itself who doesn't start with one or another assumption? This one is yours.

And you and I have no way in which to know for certain what science either will or will not be able to prove hundreds or thousands of years into the future.

Indeed, imagine folks around the time of Aristotle speculating on what might be proven by science in our time.

It's just that "nothing" becoming "something" becoming "everything in the universe today" is one of those mind-boggling conundrums that most of us own up to as really, really hard to wrap our heads around. Both "nothing at all" and an ever existing "something" seem impossible to wholly explain.

Here I always come back to an earlier post of mine in regard to Bryan Magee's reaction to all this:

Why does something exist rather than nothing? And why this something and not something else? And did everything that does exist come into existence out of nothing at all? What can that even mean though?

And then there are the speculations of Bryan Magee about time and space:

time

For a period of two to three years between the ages of nine and twelve I was in thrall to puzzlement about time. I would lie awake in bed at night in the dark thinking something along the following lines. I know there was a day before yesterday, and a day before that and a day before that and so on...Before everyday there must have been a day before. So it must be possible to go back like that for ever and ever and ever...Yet is it? The idea of going back for ever and ever was something I could not get hold of: it seemed impossible. So perhaps, after all, there must have been a beginning somewhere. But if there was a beginning, what had been going on before that? Well, obviously, nothing---nothing at all---otherwise it could not be the beginning. But if there was nothing, how could anything have got started? What could it have come from? Time wouldn't just pop into existence---bingo!--out of nothing, and start going, all by itself. Nothing is nothing, not anything. So the idea of a beginning was unimaginable, which somehow made it seem impossible too. The upshot was that it seemed to be impossible for time to have had a beginning and impossible not for it to have had a beginning.

I must be missing something here, I came to think. There are only these two alternatives so one of them must be right. They can't both be impossible. So I would switch my concentration from one to the other, and then when it had exhausted itself, back again, trying to figure out where I had gone wrong; but I never discovered.

space

I realized a similar problem existed with regard to space. I remember myself as a London evacuee in Market Harborough---I must have been ten or eleven at the time---lying on my back in the grass in a park and trying to penetrate a cloudless blue sky with my eyes and thinking something like this" "If I went straight up into the sky, and kept on going in a straight line, why wouldn't I be able to just keep on going for ever and ever and ever? But that's impossible. Why isn't it possible? Surely, eventually, I'd have to come to some sort of end. But why? If I bumped up against something eventually, wouldn't that have to be something in space? And if it was in space wouldn't there have to be something on the other side of it if only more space? On the other hand, if there was no limit, endless space couldn't just be, anymore than endless time could.


Prismatic567 wrote:Science is limited and what is meta-Science is philosophy.
From the perspective of philosophy, it is impossible to prove whether there is something instead of nothing or nothing instead of something. Thus as Wittgenstein proposed, we should just shut up whereof one cannot speak of.


As with science, we have no way of grasping what philosophers either will or will not be proposing about these relationships well off into the future. For me though anything proposed is either able to be demonstrated as true for all of us or it is not. What we believe in our head about the either/or, is/ought, Big Question quandaries that we grapple with would always seem to revolve around that relationship.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby iambiguous » Wed Feb 20, 2019 8:41 pm

Christopher Cokinos in Philosophy Now magazine

This is one of those questions which, as the Buddha says in a sermon attributed to him, “tends not toward edification”, if by edification we mean achieving a final answer.


And yet would not the Bhudda be compelled to grasp this if he is to make any sense at all of all the other things he dispenses in the way of "wisdom"?

That's the crux of it from my point of view. We have no access to the "final answer" yet we have no choice but to take our leaps to particular answers regarding actual existential interactions on this side of the grave.

Doesn't that effectively cripple those answers ultimately? We propose them only because there is no alternative. But we can never assess them as any thing other than more or less educated guesses.

Perhaps one is possible, but attempts to answer the question by appeal to the principle of sufficient reason devolve quickly into infinite regress: God created everything, but who created God? Appealing to multiverse cosmology, we might say that we happen to live in a universe finely tuned for existence of certain particles and, especially, stars. Other universes may be an absence of things. But what created the multiverse?


Or maybe not.

Last night on the Science Channel, they aired a documentary that just boggles the mind in regards to all of this: "The Battle Of the Dark Universe".

https://www.sciencechannel.com/tv-shows ... k-universe?

Here we are groping to understand something instead of nothing when it is estimated that only 5% of the known universe is actually within the reach of astrophysicists. The other 95% is composed of dark matter and dark energy. And they really [as of now] can't explain them.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby promethean75 » Wed Feb 20, 2019 10:53 pm

biggy wrote:It's just that "nothing" becoming "something" becoming "everything in the universe today" is one of those mind-boggling conundrums that most of us own up to as really, really hard to wrap our heads around. Both "nothing at all" and an ever existing "something" seem impossible to wholly explain.


and you know, while this is certainly a curious question - where did it all come from, or was it always, or will it end, etc. - it's not really the quest for an answer to these questions that drives the scientist and philosopher. rather it's what an answer would imply that the scientist and philosopher is looking for. he thinks that if he is able to find a 'creator' (whatever that might be), he might be able to find some direction for his other, more pertinent questions; does this 'creator' want me to do something specifically and/or will what i do offend or appease this 'creator'.

this indicates two rather intriguing existential problems; man doesn't know what to do, and he can never quite grow out of his need for some authority (in religion, a father-figure on a cosmic scale).

now as a sport-theist, i like to put a spin on this traditional approach and suggest that if there were a 'god', it too would recognize these two rather embarrassing problems that man has and, to the extent that a 'god' would 'want' anything, wouldn't want man to be troubled by such problems. or rather 'it' wouldn't pay attention to those who do have such problems. i'd think that this 'god' would favor the bold and courageous... so much so that you might even imagine such a person being a living antithesis to everything hitherto held in high esteem by the prevailing major religions. who would have thunk it; the 'antichrist' as the personification of divinity?

now there is a long line of reasoning behind this proposal... reasoning that reveals the various 'collisions' between logic and such things as the ontological, cosmological, intelligent design, and argument from evil arguments. you might say that god is hiding behind these things, producing them for the purpose of being refuted by those intelligent enough to recognize them as illogical, and bold and courageous enough to take these conclusions to there greatest extreme. to liberate themselves of all restrictions placed on them by such doctrinal puzzles... puzzles which were designed to be solved only by a few.

if the transformation - transition into this divine state - could be put into the schematic language of music, it might sound something like this.

the stages:

0:00-4:29 = that existential anxiety and despair that comes packaged with religious belief not yet cleared of its errors. the immature stage; uncertain, at the kierkegaardian crossroads (to leap or not to leap), looking for a father who still 'does not answer' (nietzsche).

4:29-9:12 = begin the metamorphosis. one starts to lose faith... 'this can't be right, something is amiss, something is wrong'. one realizes how they've been deceived so many years. their minds begins to twist... a strength begins growing inside, plotting its vengeance, ready to finally liberate itself. one now understands, but doesn't smile. not a smile, but a grin... a shit eating, sinister grin.

9:12-11:23 = breaks from the chains, rising from the ashes of the first stage and reaching that divine madness. it's go time, alpha team.

11:23-12:30 = the final stage before death. all things must end. finished and exhausted, one is ready for their tragic death and goes willingly into its arms having lived as the 'gods' would have wanted.

so that's pretty much what it would sound like. that would be the epic theme song 'god' wrote for the script. pretty fuckin' good, right? everything else is just noise or elevator music god wrote to characterize the lives of those who couldn't solve the puzzle.
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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby Prismatic567 » Thu Feb 21, 2019 5:47 am

iambiguous wrote:
Prismatic567 wrote:
Note Science makes the fundamental assumption [note assumption!] there is always something.
This assumption is taken for granted in Science, thus there is no way Science will ever prove there is something instead of nothing.


When grappling with the very existence of existence itself who doesn't start with one or another assumption? This one is yours.

And you and I have no way in which to know for certain what science either will or will not be able to prove hundreds or thousands of years into the future.

Indeed, imagine folks around the time of Aristotle speculating on what might be proven by science in our time.

It's just that "nothing" becoming "something" becoming "everything in the universe today" is one of those mind-boggling conundrums that most of us own up to as really, really hard to wrap our heads around. Both "nothing at all" and an ever existing "something" seem impossible to wholly explain.


You don't seem to get the point.

Note re Big Bang Theory;

    Hypothesis: The Big Bang is the beginning of the Universe.
    Assumption: There is something rather than nothing.
    Speculated Theory: Evidences support the theory BB is the beginning of the universe.

BUT, in this case the theory [conclusion] is conditioned upon the assumption.
As such you cannot covert the assumption to a conclusion, i.e.
'There is something rather than nothing'.

Thus the best you can conclude is according to Science, the BB is the origin of the universe conditioned upon the assumption 'there is something rather than nothing'.
Therefore we cannot be certain there is absolutely 'something rather than nothing'.

What is most realistic and practical is this;

Depending on the case defined;
- case X -there is something rather than nothing,
- case Y -there is nothing rather than something.

Why people insist on one [mostly X] and not the other is because of their own desperate internal psychological state of insecurity.
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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby iambiguous » Sun Feb 24, 2019 9:19 pm

promethean75 wrote:
biggy wrote:It's just that "nothing" becoming "something" becoming "everything in the universe today" is one of those mind-boggling conundrums that most of us own up to as really, really hard to wrap our heads around. Both "nothing at all" and an ever existing "something" seem impossible to wholly explain.


and you know, while this is certainly a curious question - where did it all come from, or was it always, or will it end, etc. - it's not really the quest for an answer to these questions that drives the scientist and philosopher. rather it's what an answer would imply that the scientist and philosopher is looking for. he thinks that if he is able to find a 'creator' (whatever that might be), he might be able to find some direction for his other, more pertinent questions; does this 'creator' want me to do something specifically and/or will what i do offend or appease this 'creator'.


On the other hand, where exactly does ontology end and teleology begin here? If teleology is even a factor at all. Ultimately [whatever that means], I think most of this revolves around the fact that we are creatures who know that we are going to die. And [for some of us] it seems likely that "I" is obliterated. As in utterly.

So, if someone is actually able to come up with an argument that can make sense of something rather than nothing and this something rather than another something, there's a really, really, really slim chance that we can scale this nothingness back to a frame of mind that is a little less terrifying.

Unless of course you want to die.

And then on this side of the grave not only do I not know what I ought to do in my interactions with others revolving around value judgments, I don't think that [in a No God world] this can be known. Anything can be rationalized. If for no other reason that almost everything already has been.

"I" here is [for me] an existential contraption far, far far, beyond being able either to completely understand or to control.

On the other hand, if there be a God, it's His way or the highway. The highway to Hell for example.

Depending on the extent to which this extant God is in possession of, say, omniscience and omnipotence?

As for the "stages" how could they not in turn be but the embodiment of dasein, conflicting goods and political economy? Not unlike the stages that a Freudian or a Marxist or Jungian might suggest.

Here [as with everything else] there are those parts that we are able to effectively demonstrate to others as being true, and there are those parts that we think are true "in our head" but can't manage get others to believe are true in theirs.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby iambiguous » Sun Feb 24, 2019 9:36 pm

Prismatic567 wrote:You don't seem to get the point.

Note re Big Bang Theory;

    Hypothesis: The Big Bang is the beginning of the Universe.
    Assumption: There is something rather than nothing.
    Speculated Theory: Evidences support the theory BB is the beginning of the universe.

BUT, in this case the theory [conclusion] is conditioned upon the assumption.
As such you cannot covert the assumption to a conclusion, i.e.
'There is something rather than nothing'.

Thus the best you can conclude is according to Science, the BB is the origin of the universe conditioned upon the assumption 'there is something rather than nothing'.
Therefore we cannot be certain there is absolutely 'something rather than nothing'.


Yeah, my point is that all of this is no less embedded in the gap between what we/others think is known about the Big Bang/Something and all that would need to be known about the existence of existence itself.

How do we make that part go away? Other than in concocting conflicted frames of mind about all of this in our heads? In places like this.

We don't even know for certain if the psychological insecurity that we feel is something we actually choose freely to feel.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby iambiguous » Wed Feb 27, 2019 6:42 pm

Eneree Gundalai from Philosophy Now magazine

My baby daughter is starting to babble. Soon she will mouth her first word, and then… Well, then come the questions. She will be asking why this and why that, so the powers of my knowledge and patience will be stretched to new limits. I have tried to prepare myself for that most puzzling question of all: Why is there something rather than nothing? She will, no doubt, phrase it differently, but I will know what she means. I close my eyes and begin to imagine what the wise men would say…


Really, what would you tell your child? Or, more to the point, what could you tell her?

Professor Broot says, “There just is”; and Professor Endelez that “The universe was caused by a Big Bang, and before that was a Big Bang, and so on.” My daughter still presses her whys, even though the former dismissed the question and the latter dodged it by swapping nothing with infinity. That does not sit well with myself or my daughter. So my daughter swamps the pair with a stream of whys, and then I notice Professor Broot beginning to twizzle and tug at his moustache, and I know it is time for us to go. We move on to Professor Gottluv, who tells us that “Everything in the universe has a cause and the ultimate cause must, by necessity of avoiding an absurd regress, be uncaused, and we call this thing God.” Yet my daughter continues to ask why, and so do I. It sounds like our concept of nothing was now swapped for a kind of infinity called God. Meantime, rumours have been going around about our endeavour. A host of Professors are swarming around us now, and we are overwhelmed by ever more exotic definitions of nothingness and time, and pedantry about the question’s wording.


That's how it would no doubt unfold alright. A host of folks taking a stab at it more or less informed about it than the astrophysicists own stabs at it are able to impart.

Maybe that's why the overwhelming preponderance of folks, preoccupied with subsisting from day to day and paying the bills, never give it all that much thought. They just leave it up to the ecclesiastics.

Who may or may not be closer to the truth than the scientists.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby iambiguous » Fri Mar 01, 2019 8:00 pm

"Science Will Never Explain Why There's Something Rather Than Nothing"

By John Horgan in Scientific American

Of course none of us will probably ever really know whether science will eventually explain why there's something instead of nothing.

If for no other reason that all of us will no doubt be dead and gone by the time science is able to actually accomplish it. If it is ever able to.

Unless, of course, there is a God and one day He is able to explain it.

Still, folks like us -- philosophers -- seem ever inclined to broach and to explore questions such as this anyway. For whatever it is worth. And for better or for worse.

When predicting something that science will never do, it's wise to recall the French philosopher Auguste Comte. In 1835 he asserted that science will never figure out what stars are made of. That seemed like a safe bet, but within decades astronomers started determining the chemical composition of the Sun and other stars by analyzing the spectrum of light they emitted.


Thus he gets right to the point: Never say never. Of course knowing what stars are made of is not the same thing as knowing why, say, our own particular star is made of this stuff and not of some other stuff entirely. Let alone why it exist to be made of any stuff at all.

On the other hand...

I'm nonetheless going out on a limb and guessing that science will never, ever answer what I call "The Question": Why is there something rather than nothing? You might think this prediction is safe to the point of triviality, but certain prominent scientists are claiming not merely that they can answer The Question but that they have already done so.


So, even before we get to any possible answers, we are encumbered with the uncertainty as to whether an answer is even within our reach at all. After all, how can we know for certain that the human brain [being itself but a component of our own particular somethingness] is even capable of connecting the dots here to that infamous TOE.

Let alone connecting the dots between that and an explanation for why "I" chooses particular things to do from day to day to day.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby Prismatic567 » Sat Mar 02, 2019 6:46 am

iambiguous wrote:"Science Will Never Explain Why There's Something Rather Than Nothing"

By John Horgan in Scientific American

....

I'm nonetheless going out on a limb and guessing that science will never, ever answer what I call "The Question": Why is there something rather than nothing? You might think this prediction is safe to the point of triviality, but certain prominent scientists are claiming not merely that they can answer The Question but that they have already done so.


So, even before we get to any possible answers, we are encumbered with the uncertainty as to whether an answer is even within our reach at all. After all, how can we know for certain that the human brain [being itself but a component of our own particular somethingness] is even capable of connecting the dots here to that infamous TOE.

Let alone connecting the dots between that and an explanation for why "I" chooses particular things to do from day to day to day.

As I had stated above the whole of the Scientific Framework from its essence is grounded and conditioned by an ASSUMPTION,
....There is something rather than nothing.

There is no way Science will work if Science do not include the above assumption as a fundamental condition.

Given the above condition, there is no way Science, as its default, will ever want to prove,
There is something [ultimate] rather than nothing.

Note that 'something' refers to the ultimate thing, i.e. the thing-in-itself, the substance, essence, οὐσία ousia, and other names,

Substance theory, or substance–attribute theory, is an ontological theory about objecthood, positing that a substance is distinct from its properties. A thing-in-itself is a property-bearer that must be distinguished from the properties it bears.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Substance_theory


One thing we are certain is there are humans [some, most?] who are desperate to want to be sure "there is something rather than nothing."
I believe Science and Philosophy can find answers to the above to deal with the related cognitive dissonance.

For most humans, there must be a cause to every effect, but Hume disagreed that such a principle is ultimate but rather the underlying factor to 'a cause for an effect' is actually psychological, i.e. grounded on the minds of human[s] individually and collectively.

It is the same for the desperation to ground something to a substance [thing], we should ignore such desperation and instead focus on the psychology of the question of 'there must be something [ultimate] instead of nothing'.

Btw, it is the same desperate psychology of why you are stuck in a deep shit hole you have dug for yourself.
I am a progressive human being, a World Citizen, NOT-a-theist and not religious.
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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby MagsJ » Sun Mar 03, 2019 6:26 pm

On the below premises.. can we get/create an object/the Universe out of nothing? all the probable scientific laws say we cannot, and do the Universal laws say likewise? what of them..? and do we even know what they wholly and truthfully are..? are they even verifiable under our current scientific knowledge-base?

:-k
The possibility of anything we can imagine existing is endless and infinite

I haven't got the time to spend the time reading something that is telling me nothing, as I will never be able to get that time back, and I may need it for something at some point in time. Wait! What?

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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby Meno_ » Sun Mar 03, 2019 6:35 pm

MagsJ wrote:On the below premises.. can we get/create an object/the Universe out of nothing? all the probable scientific laws say we cannot, and do the Universal laws say likewise? what of them..? and do we even know what they wholly and truthfully are..? are they even verifiable under our current scientific knowledge-base?

:-k



On the level, when the simulation become insidiferentiable with or by the simulacra, the stimulated inference may occasion a pause, wherein the illuminated answer may present Its'Self.
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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby Prismatic567 » Mon Mar 04, 2019 9:13 am

MagsJ wrote:On the below premises.. can we get/create an object/the Universe out of nothing? all the probable scientific laws say we cannot, and do the Universal laws say likewise? what of them..? and do we even know what they wholly and truthfully are..? are they even verifiable under our current scientific knowledge-base?

:-k

As stated above Science had NEVER proven conclusively we cannot produce things out of nothing.
Science merely ASSUME 'there is something from something' or 'there is something instead of nothing'.

The quest to search for something ultimate rather than nothing is a flawed hypothesis.
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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby iambiguous » Tue Mar 05, 2019 7:39 pm

Prismatic567 wrote:As I had stated above the whole of the Scientific Framework from its essence is grounded and conditioned by an ASSUMPTION,
....There is something rather than nothing.

There is no way Science will work if Science do not include the above assumption as a fundamental condition.


Seems reasonable to me. But questions this problematic may well bend the boundaries of what our own species is even able to differentiate as reasonable or unreasonable. Why is something more reasonable than nothing? Why is this something more reasonable than another something? Are there in fact parallel universes in which reason revolves around very different laws intertwining space and time, matter and energy?

And all of this seems [for now] to be predicated on particular assumptions about the initial "conditions" in place when existence itself either came into existence out of nothing at all or [even more mind-boggling?] was able to always exist.

Then it's back to Bryan Magee floundering about regarding just how surreal "being reasonable" can seem here.

Prismatic567 wrote:Note that 'something' refers to the ultimate thing, i.e. the thing-in-itself, the substance, essence, οὐσία ousia, and other names...


Or the name that most prefer: God.

But that's the beauty of discussions like this. You may well be wrong regarding your own conclusions, but then no one else seems capable of demonstrating that they are right.

Substance theory, or substance–attribute theory, is an ontological theory about objecthood, positing that a substance is distinct from its properties. A thing-in-itself is a property-bearer that must be distinguished from the properties it bears.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Substance_theory


Prismatic567 wrote:One thing we are certain is there are humans [some, most?] who are desperate to want to be sure "there is something rather than nothing."


More to the point existentially most humans are intent upon believing they are in touch with the real me regarding the right thing to do on this side of the grave, and that "I" will continue on, on the other side of it. That is basically "something" to them in a nutshell. Then it's back to God or one or another rendition of pantheism.

Prismatic567 wrote:I believe Science and Philosophy can find answers to the above to deal with the related cognitive dissonance.


In our lifetime?

Prismatic567 wrote:For most humans, there must be a cause to every effect, but Hume disagreed that such a principle is ultimate but rather the underlying factor to 'a cause for an effect' is actually psychological, i.e. grounded on the minds of human[s] individually and collectively.


This seems likely to be the case. But then we all get stuck because we don't know where to take the discussion [and the assumptions] beyond that. How does human psychology fit into an understanding of existence itself? And, sans God, we will tumble over into the abyss that is nothingness for all of eternity.

And this triggers all manner of psychological reactions that, in turn, get swallowed up in the profound mystery of it all.

Prismatic567 wrote:It is the same for the desperation to ground something to a substance [thing], we should ignore such desperation and instead focus on the psychology of the question of 'there must be something [ultimate] instead of nothing'.


On the other hand, there is no on/off switch in our brain that allows for this to be easy as "flicking a switch". This too is embodied in dasein. We all have different experiences that either bring us into or do not bring us into discussions like this.

Prismatic567 wrote:Btw, it is the same desperate psychology of why you are stuck in a deep shit hole you have dug for yourself.


I dug it, true, but that is no less an "existential contraption". And, more to the point, my rendition of the hole revolves more around conflicting goods in the is/ought world.

Though, sure, I -- "I" -- am no less drawn and quartered in regard to the Big Questions.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Something Instead of Nothing

Postby iambiguous » Tue Mar 05, 2019 8:04 pm

"Science Will Never Explain Why There's Something Rather Than Nothing"

By John Horgan in Scientific American

Decades ago, physicists such as the legendary John Wheeler proposed that, according to the probabilistic dictates of quantum field theory, even an apparently perfect vacuum seethes with particles and antiparticles popping into and out of existence. In 1990, the Russian physicist Andrei Linde assured me that our entire cosmos—as well as an infinite number of other universes—might have sprung from a primordial "quantum fluctuation."


This is the part where most of us here begin to flounder. Why? Because we don't have an education sophisticated enough to react to this in a sophisticated manner.

Are the "probabilistic dictates of quantum field theory" a reasonable assumption to make here? Instead, for the technically unsophisticated among us, we can only take note of the extent to which the hard guys in the hard sciences are able to go beyond "theory" and create experiments able to actually demonstrate empirically [phenomenally] the "whole truth". And then peruse the assumptions that the hard guys in the soft sciences make in connecting the dots between all of that and "I" going about the business of living our lives.

But here, however, it is important to note things like this:

It turns out that roughly 68% of the universe is dark energy. Dark matter makes up about 27%. The rest - everything on Earth, everything ever observed with all of our instruments, all normal matter - adds up to less than 5% of the universe.


And even the hard guys in the hard sciences have no sophisticated understanding of what that means. If, in fact, it is even true.

Some actually speculate that dark energy/matter is as the result of "seepage" from other universes into our own.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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