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Author Topic:   A Simplified Proof That The Universe Cannot Be Explained
NoNukes
Inactive Member


Message 136 of 331 (784505)
05-18-2016 8:07 PM
Reply to: Message 133 by nano
05-18-2016 7:44 PM


I merely said you had an interesting point and I would think about it.

Where apparently "think about it" means avoiding the consequences of what it means for you definition of 'explanation' while continuing to assert that you have proven something.

Either you are limiting explanation to refer to only absolute first causes, in which case your OP is a mere tautology, or you are not in which case your proof fails because buried within your proof is a requirement for first causes only as explanations.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people. Martin Luther King

If there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask questions? Scott Adams


This message is a reply to:
 Message 133 by nano, posted 05-18-2016 7:44 PM nano has not yet responded

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 83 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 137 of 331 (784506)
05-18-2016 8:15 PM
Reply to: Message 120 by Dr Adequate
05-18-2016 6:20 PM


I was kinda looking for an explanation with a justification. I will concede that anything can be explained badly.

Well I don't know what or if there is an ultimate explanation, so it would be difficult to sincerely give it.

All I can say is that the explanation, should it exist, seems to me would be fundamental in some way. You seem to be defining 'explanation' to mean it must necessarily include reference to other entities, but this just assumes the conclusion to get there. If it isn't true then 'It can be no other way' seems to explain it perfectly in such a way as to end the line of query.

Well, the alternative seems to be logically consistent.

Yes, you've said.

Is it actually possible, though? You can't use logic alone to eliminate it - granted, but can logic and observation potentially shed light on the question? We are talking about our reality, not some 'logically possible' reality.

"If this is square, there is no possibility of it being triangular. Since we know that there is a possibility of it being triangular *counts its sides, of which there are three* there is no possibility of it being square."

If you are able to show a coherent account for the state of being where it is both possible for there to be something and where it is possible for there to be nothing you might be on to something. As far as I can tell, if it is possible to be anything, entities must give rise to that possibility, introducing the very things we were supposing may or may not be possible.

Granted, if all you want to do is tell me 'An empty set is not logically forbidden', then that's fine - it's 'innocuous but inconsequential' for this discussion, but I'm certainly not arguing that point.

We don't have to say that 'things can possibly exist' on the grounds that it isn't impossible. We can observe reality and realize we've already taken a step more than is needed. Maybe when we examine the universe in more depth we'll learn 'Actually 'it' could have been nothing, and there's no reason why 'it' isn't nothing'. Maybe we learn the opposite. Maybe we never learn.

There are no entities that logically could not not be, as long we are willing to sacrifice other entities. But are there any entities in reality that could not not be? I don't know of any, I'm not sure how we'd recognize if it was the case. I don't see how we can rule it out. The fine details of the universe certainly seem to run into tension with logic from time to time, maybe it's the last detail that breaks the camel's back

If there is some entity, the absence of which would result in an absence of everything. That that entity is necessary, given that we know there is not an absence of everything.

I mean, who isn't at least having fun trying to negotiate the grammar?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 120 by Dr Adequate, posted 05-18-2016 6:20 PM Dr Adequate has not yet responded

  
AZPaul3
Member
Posts: 3530
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 4.9


Message 138 of 331 (784507)
05-18-2016 8:16 PM
Reply to: Message 134 by nano
05-18-2016 7:52 PM


I'm not ready to take the ultimate step, but I like your thinking.

Ah, me.

Just like Schrödinger's cat.

Erwin Schrödinger put forward his thought experiment as a rather tongue-in-cheek slap at Neil Bohr's interpretation of Schrödinger's wave function equations and Paul Dirac's treatment of Bohr's interpretation as superposed states. Next thing he knows his insult to the ideas became the defining example of those vary ideas.

So be it.

Edited by AZPaul3, : No reason given.

Edited by AZPaul3, : word


This message is a reply to:
 Message 134 by nano, posted 05-18-2016 7:52 PM nano has not yet responded

  
Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 16069
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 139 of 331 (784508)
05-18-2016 8:18 PM
Reply to: Message 132 by NoNukes
05-18-2016 7:40 PM


I submit that we don't commonly require such a thing as part of explanations, and I repeat my question of why you do require that kind of 'completeness' when explaining the universe.

In that case of why Fred killed John, where would we stop our inquiry into why Fred killed John? Is the answer because Fred stole John's money an explanation? Does it add anything to say that Fred is unable to control is emotions and overreacted? Why does not the answer require us to examine the origin of whatever mental state Fred had when he pulled the trigger. Why don't we have to further inquire into the events that led up to the events that formed Fred?

It is because we cut off the explanation and back tracking at some suitable point and not because any one thing is not a cause. Some particular event is considered a proximate cause suitable for the circumstance, and no further cause seek is required.

Yeah, you choose a cut-off point, you say, we will explain things further down the causal chain, but not the things further up it, which we will neglect.

But if you are being asked for the cause of everything, then if there are things you're neglecting to explain, then you are not in fact explaining everything, just the things down the chain from your cut-off point. It's not that the explanation would be the wrong kind of explanation, it's that the thing you're being asked to explain would not be the thing that you would be explaining.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 132 by NoNukes, posted 05-18-2016 7:40 PM NoNukes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 142 by NoNukes, posted 05-18-2016 9:27 PM Dr Adequate has responded

  
bluegenes
Member (Idle past 456 days)
Posts: 3119
From: U.K.
Joined: 01-24-2007


Message 140 of 331 (784510)
05-18-2016 8:44 PM
Reply to: Message 135 by nano
05-18-2016 8:01 PM


nano writes:

Logically, cause and effect could be considered to be part of the structure of physical laws of the universe. The laws of physics could have been the first thing and as such their origin is unexplainable. In turn, the origin of the universe is unexplainable.

There you go again. A consistent reality in which something would always require a causal explanation is assumed, as if necessary. And you even have the laws of the universe being evoked to explain its existence (which would mean that it would be necessarily self-causing).

If a consistent reality is necessary to your proof, it is a necessary first thing, and requires no explanation. You can't have it both ways.

Another thing you might like to work on is the point that first, second, third things etc. are time dependent, so if time is the tenth thing, for example, there would actually be nine first things, not one.

That is, if we assume a necessary consistent reality.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 135 by nano, posted 05-18-2016 8:01 PM nano has not yet responded

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 83 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


(1)
Message 141 of 331 (784511)
05-18-2016 8:44 PM


Alternative wordings, can they escape grammar traps
The boiled down version of 'why is there something rather than nothing' can lead to some odd discussions.

Consider an alternative wording that is asking the same question, perhaps this will be illuminating.

Why are some things real?

This at least sends us down the path of determining what makes something real, but I submit that nobody around here actually knows the answer so it's at best the story telling of an educated thinker.

So...maybe not thinking about how things that don't exist aren't something that can really be being when the substance of the thing of nothingness is contradicted by the absence of reality in a quasitolenic sense of being. We can wonder whether half a bee must ipso facto half not bee; can a bee be said to be, or not to be an entire bee when half the bee is not a bee?

I'm not sure any of those paths is going to be fruitful, it's been fun playing with it though. I maintain that ultimately, Rationalism is an insufficient method for analysing the world we actually live in. And since we have little else, nothing is proven except the case that nothing is proven.


  
NoNukes
Inactive Member


Message 142 of 331 (784513)
05-18-2016 9:27 PM
Reply to: Message 139 by Dr Adequate
05-18-2016 8:18 PM


But if you are being asked for the cause of everything, then if there are things you're neglecting to explain

I agree. But asking 'explain the universe' may not be synonymous with asking for 'the cause of everything'. That position would seem to be trivially easy to demonstrate if you are willing to concede that there might be things either external to or prior to the existence of the universe. Apparently the OP does concede exactly that. Further, I think it is enough to say 'may not be' if all that is necessary is to provide possible explanations for the universe rather than real ones.

So my question remains why, other than for the purpose of converting 'explain the universe' into an unanswerable question must we insist that the explanation include a complete explanation of any extra-dimensional causes and why are effects requiring no causation ruled out? It seems we agree that we do not always ask for such things. Why is it not sufficient for an explanation to describe a proximate cause rather than an ultimate one? If I asked you to explain radioactive decay would you actually be stymied by the fact that decay is uncaused? Did that state of affairs trouble you when you tackled the subject in your text on geology?

If the answer is only 'because that is what is requested', which is how I read your answer here, then what is being asserted in the OP is a simple tautology. But more than that, the tautology is one that we should and do ignore in normal conversation.

Edited by NoNukes, : No reason given.

Edited by NoNukes, : Replace 'geography' with 'geology'


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people. Martin Luther King

If there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask questions? Scott Adams


This message is a reply to:
 Message 139 by Dr Adequate, posted 05-18-2016 8:18 PM Dr Adequate has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 143 by Dr Adequate, posted 05-18-2016 10:15 PM NoNukes has responded

  
Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 16069
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 143 of 331 (784515)
05-18-2016 10:15 PM
Reply to: Message 142 by NoNukes
05-18-2016 9:27 PM


I agree. But asking 'explain the universe' may not be synonymous with asking for 'the cause of everything'. That position would seem to be trivially easy to demonstrate if you are willing to concede that there might be things either external to or prior to the existence of the universe. Apparently the OP does concede exactly that.

That's not what I got from the OP.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 142 by NoNukes, posted 05-18-2016 9:27 PM NoNukes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 144 by NoNukes, posted 05-18-2016 10:50 PM Dr Adequate has not yet responded
 Message 145 by kbertsche, posted 05-18-2016 10:53 PM Dr Adequate has not yet responded

  
NoNukes
Inactive Member


Message 144 of 331 (784517)
05-18-2016 10:50 PM
Reply to: Message 143 by Dr Adequate
05-18-2016 10:15 PM


Nonukes writes:

That position would seem to be trivially easy to demonstrate if you are willing to concede that there might be things either external to or prior to the existence of the universe. Apparently the OP does concede exactly that.

Dr Adequate writes:

That's not what I got from the OP.

I re-read the OP and I don't see that concession either. Which makes me wonder why you said the following:

Dr. Adequate writes:

Per the rules of the OP, which includes 'multiverses', things outside of our universe is something that requires an explanation.

Your statement says that the OP includes rules about things outside of the universe which I would suggest implies that those things might exist. While I acknowledge that concept is not in the OP itself, it can be found in other statements made by the original poster.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people. Martin Luther King

If there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask questions? Scott Adams


This message is a reply to:
 Message 143 by Dr Adequate, posted 05-18-2016 10:15 PM Dr Adequate has not yet responded

  
kbertsche
Member (Idle past 110 days)
Posts: 1427
From: San Jose, CA, USA
Joined: 05-10-2007


Message 145 of 331 (784518)
05-18-2016 10:53 PM
Reply to: Message 143 by Dr Adequate
05-18-2016 10:15 PM


Dr A writes:


NoNukes writes:


I agree. But asking 'explain the universe' may not be synonymous with asking for 'the cause of everything'. That position would seem to be trivially easy to demonstrate if you are willing to concede that there might be things either external to or prior to the existence of the universe. Apparently the OP does concede exactly that.


That's not what I got from the OP.

Me either. Further, I explained what I thought nano meant in the OP, and he confirmed it.

Nano is using "universe" to mean "anything and everything that exists". If anything at all exists (space-time, QFT, governing equations), this is part of the universe and the universe exists. Nano's "nothing" or "null set" is ABSOLUTELY nothing (in a philosophical sense); no space-time, no QFT, no branes, no quantum vacuum, no governing equations. His challenge is to explain how/why any of these began to exist.

Edited by kbertsche, : No reason given.


"Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind." – Albert Einstein

“I am very astonished that the scientific picture of the real world around me is very deficient. It gives us a lot of factual information, puts all of our experience in a magnificently consistent order, but it is ghastly silent about all and sundry that is really near to our heart, that really matters to us. It cannot tell us a word about red and blue, bitter and sweet, physical pain and physical delight; it knows nothing of beautiful and ugly, good or bad, God and eternity. Science sometimes pretends to answer questions in these domains, but the answers are very often so silly that we are not inclined to take them seriously.” – Erwin Schroedinger


This message is a reply to:
 Message 143 by Dr Adequate, posted 05-18-2016 10:15 PM Dr Adequate has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 146 by ProtoTypical, posted 05-18-2016 10:59 PM kbertsche has responded
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ProtoTypical
Member
Posts: 1769
From: Ontario Canada
Joined: 08-04-2010


(2)
Message 146 of 331 (784520)
05-18-2016 10:59 PM
Reply to: Message 145 by kbertsche
05-18-2016 10:53 PM


His challenge is to explain how/why any of these began to exist.

He assumes that they had a beginning. Things that have always been do not require an initial cause.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 145 by kbertsche, posted 05-18-2016 10:53 PM kbertsche has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 150 by Diomedes, posted 05-19-2016 10:14 AM ProtoTypical has acknowledged this reply
 Message 152 by kbertsche, posted 05-19-2016 11:03 AM ProtoTypical has acknowledged this reply

  
NoNukes
Inactive Member


Message 147 of 331 (784521)
05-18-2016 11:02 PM
Reply to: Message 145 by kbertsche
05-18-2016 10:53 PM


Nano is using "universe" to mean "anything and everything that exists"

And apparently anything that ever existed even if that thing disappeared as a result of forming the universe and even if claiming that such a thing is part of the universe is facially silly. For example if God created the universe then God is part of the universe and must then be explained as well.

Again, such a definition makes the OPs claims about explanations a simply tautologies. His reasoning does not tell us anything about whether or not we can explain the universe in the conventional meaning of that term. If we can agree that his "proof" is not intended to do that and should not be equivocated to discussing what we conventionally call explanations or what we conventionally call the universe, then he is welcome to his definition.

Edited by NoNukes, : No reason given.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people. Martin Luther King

If there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask questions? Scott Adams


This message is a reply to:
 Message 145 by kbertsche, posted 05-18-2016 10:53 PM kbertsche has not yet responded

  
bluegenes
Member (Idle past 456 days)
Posts: 3119
From: U.K.
Joined: 01-24-2007


Message 148 of 331 (784536)
05-19-2016 5:22 AM


A Simplified Proof That the Universe Can Be Explained.
Non-reality can't be real (by definition).

Reality, then, necessarily exists in all possible worlds.

Therefore, reality is an uncaused first cause that requires no explanation.


Replies to this message:
 Message 149 by Dr Adequate, posted 05-19-2016 8:57 AM bluegenes has responded

  
Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 16069
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 149 of 331 (784538)
05-19-2016 8:57 AM
Reply to: Message 148 by bluegenes
05-19-2016 5:22 AM


Re: A Simplified Proof That the Universe Can Be Explained.
Non-reality can't be real (by definition).

Can the non-reality of unicorns be real?

Reality, then, necessarily exists in all possible worlds.

Surely what you mean to say is that reality is real in all possible worlds?

Therefore, reality is an uncaused first cause that requires no explanation.

Why would it be a first cause? For example, suppose the reality was that there were no things. Why would that give rise to things, such as the universe?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 148 by bluegenes, posted 05-19-2016 5:22 AM bluegenes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 155 by bluegenes, posted 05-19-2016 3:02 PM Dr Adequate has responded

  
Diomedes
Member
Posts: 761
From: Central Florida, USA
Joined: 09-13-2013
Member Rating: 3.8


Message 150 of 331 (784539)
05-19-2016 10:14 AM
Reply to: Message 146 by ProtoTypical
05-18-2016 10:59 PM


He assumes that they had a beginning. Things that have always been do not require an initial cause.

And this is actually verified via the Law of Conservation of Mass & Energy.

quote:
Energy cannot be created nor destroyed, only transformed from one form to another.

By virtue of that law, the implication is that there is no first cause requirement for energy. It simply has always been in existence.

I have had this discussion with Creationists in the past when they try to invoke the Cosmological Argument that necessitates the need for a first cause. Which they label 'God'. But as I indicate to them, from an energy standpoint, there is no causal requirement.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 146 by ProtoTypical, posted 05-18-2016 10:59 PM ProtoTypical has acknowledged this reply

  
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