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Thread: Cosmology

  1. #1126
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    Any help at all in coming about or developing as it did precludes a random universe. For things to come about with no proclivity to come about, is absurd on the face of it. The less the proclivity exists for things to act in a certain way, the lower the probability of it happening.

    Universal stuff with no proclivity to get together and make other things has a probability of creating the universe that asymptotically approaches zero. Proclivity, that built-in potential, is the reason we are here observing at all.

  2. #1127
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    On the verge of horizons, we proceed.

    We have seen that the connections between matter & matter are multifarious. Chemical combinations (for instance) are too numerous to be catalogued, and are in fact infinite.

    With the right set of eyes nature is seen to be very busy at all times in most places. There is all kinds of commerce and trade in the chemical world (staying with the analogy) for instance. This commerce is normal and natural, not a special circumstance, as if things were made to work in combination.

    Our universe seems set up for activity, just as a universe of noble gases would seem set up for inactivity.

    We feel a "bias," in our set up towards activity and new combinations. We feel this same bias made the creation of life not only possible but a sure thing in our universe, given enough time. 14 billion years is not long enough to the intuition, however. Even more time should have been required to produce simple life and evolve it to complex life with minimal consciousness and then evolve that consciousness to the high self consciousness of man.

    Not only is 14 billion years a short time in this context, but consider that the process of development was arrested and almost wiped out at least several times in mass extinctions. In other words, the process of getting to where we are now went super fast, almost copying cosmic inflation itself, and happened in spite of massive setbacks. Such success smacks of a proclivity for those things we are counting as a success.

  3. #1128
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    An extraordinarily rare event? I don't think so. The world kept returning to life, rather nursing it back strong, after each mass extinction. The way stellar nebulae are natural nurseries for stars and other cosmic misfits, the world is a natural nursery (the only one we know of) for experiments in animation.

  4. #1129
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    Once you heat up gases rich with incidental elements things start to happen. That is our universe. There are many heat sources. Gravity collects the gases and they heat up under the continued action of gravity and a few basic laws.

    The honest investigator is not allowed to let it go with only a note that our universe seems hugely biased toward activity and creation, compared to other universes we can easily imagine, that is. This observation must be addressed. It must be dealt with.

    It is significant that we have to admit to living in a biased universe. Our universe creates things all the time--even space, for new space is being created all the time for the first time as our universe expands. It is not expanding into what was formerly empty space, but what was formerly nameless nothingness. There was no space there. There was no there at all.

    We have to ask ourselves why this is so. Do we actually live in a universe where runaway creation is the order of the day? If this is the case there is no reason to assume life is not merely the tip of the iceberg of the possible. In a universe geared for runaway creation, one should not be surprised if afterlife is part of the deal, too, since we already know life is, and life is pretty strange itself, everyone can probably admit.

    The right conditions for life to kick up are scarce and scattered, but not nonexistent. It will not occur too early in the universe, for we will need some iron first, to be supplied by spent supernovae exploding and disseminating heavy stuff. After gravity collects the materials into a hot soup, the brew cooks and cools for a long while, the heavy stuff sinking to the center of the mass where it will become the magnetic iron core of a planet. Life as we know it must have a protective magnetic field, provided by its spinning molten core.

    We have to suspect that our universe is open to other experiments in integration, not just on the chemical plane of our analogy, but also in areas where we are not equipped to observe the activity the way we have taught ourselves to observe chemical activity, and where we have no valid reasons for suspecting that kind of activity in the first place.

    To some, our universe was made that way, and to others it just turned out that way. The common point is that it is that way.

    Just because we have shifted the mantle of creator from the shoulders of a mysterious being to the universe itself, does not mean we have escaped the hard questions.

    We have to ask ourselves if it was a random accident that the universe turned out this way, or was it purposeful?

    The universe has become a great creator. Did it create itself? Can something which does not exist yet create itself anyway? Why does the universe have those biases we can easily observe it to have?

    We should rule out anything creating itself before it even exists. The universe did not create itself. Doesn't that feel better?

    Whatever created the universe created it with certain biases. Were these biases purposeful, or were they accidents. Were they inevitable? Why?

    As we can see, there is no escape just because we now might now admit certain proclivities in matter to be responsible for life. We are clearly obligated to shift our attention to the proclivities and explain them as well as we can under our paradigm of randomness, or admit the universe had a separate creator who handed over the mundane duties of creation to the universe itself.

  5. #1130
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    I don't see how it could create itself. I think the cause of the creation was some agent not an event. That is there was a purpose involved.

  6. #1131
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    Quote Originally Posted by YesNo View Post
    I don't see how it could create itself. I think the cause of the creation was some agent not an event. That is there was a purpose involved.
    It would have to precede itself to create itself, a clear impossibility to our minds.

    However, if the Hubbleverse is not all there is to the universe, the universe could be infinitely old already. If an eternity has already passed--correct me if I am wrong--but isn't that the same as saying that everything that could ever possibly happen has to have happened already, and we can only be living through a repeated portion?

    Is that a logical problem if we consider the universe to be infinite in age? An uncreated, non-deterministic yet non-random universe could not produce an event that had not already happened. I think that is one ineluctable reality of an infinitely old universe.

    Well, there is nothing in me which demands that events surrounding me--nor even my own experiences-- be new. Given long enough, events and experiences would repeat for a spell and maybe even forever, like the team of monkeys expected to type Hamlet. But if things repeat, isn't that determinism again, rearing its ugly head once more? There is this uncomfortable logical quandary when we consider the universe to be infinitely old without a beginning. I am not sure I can get out of it.

    But wait! I just realized nothing in me demands or requires Free Will, either. I like the sound of it all right. That is why I did not want to give it up. But it is not as if my philosophy must have it or I cannot be satisfied.

    I still like the idea that we possess a simulated Free Will asymptotically close to the real thing.

    I suspect there are many shades of consciousness. What are some physical phenomena which might be conscious activity rather than the mechanical or random processes we think they are?

  7. #1132
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    I tend to think there are only two general kinds of causation--event causation and agent causation. If an agent does it there was some freedom involved. I don't think there is any really random stuff happening, not even quantum collapses.

  8. #1133
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    Sometimes we have to separate concepts in our minds to see what we have so far, cease our backward extrapolating for a moment and appraise. We think of perspective and of angles subtended. At the beach what angle should a gull subtend a certain distance from some observer? We know an answer only if we assume the observer is human. No one said the observer could not be an eagle, whose vision can operate at magnification power 3, meaning of course, a larger angle subtended at the same distance.

    Now think about the question (How conscious is it?). At what distance in time were primate ancestors conscious enough to be human? Is the answer only when they could ask this question? Not they, just one man or woman. If one man asks that question, all men everywhere become immediately human, even those in the middle of murdering someone who finish.

    Seeing is to vision as thought is to consciousness. Many species appear to worry, but only humans worry about an afterlife.

    How large should a star appear? No size at all. How large should anything be at any particular distance? No size at all, is the correct answer. Can you apply this answer to the concept of consciousness?

  9. #1134
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    Purpose/Significance of Optical Illusion?

    There are people who believe explicitly in God, at least they claim they do. To them there is no sloppy overflow in God's natural universe. God does not do anything approximately, but everything precisely, they believe. Everything God does and has created is real. Creation is part of the definition of real after all, when you think about it.

    If God has a purpose in everything, what is the purpose of optical illusion? Why was a choice made to give us senses that are often unreliable? Surely, God could have done it differently if that being has only a portion of the control over the universe attributed to him by his faithful. To say that God works in mysterious ways, is the ultimate cop-out and an explanation of nothing. It explains that you do not have an answer, or anything close to one.

    For years I have suspected that Buddha got very close to the truth with his notion of Maya. It seems to me now that there is a lot more to optical illusion than the little bit one finds in entertaining books on the subject. Formal optical illusions presented in books cannot be controlled or prevented when we follow directions and look at the right spot, etc.

    Does God really have some interest in fooling and testing people. That idea seems awfully old fashioned to me. In my early life there was an aunt who insisted that even dinosaur bones were something put there to tempt man from God's words.

    I do not know if God has an interest in testing us, but from all the evidence, it seems said entity does have an interest in fooling us, otherwise why give us senses that cannot be relied upon consistently?

    If there is a God, what then is the purpose of optical illusion? I suspect that a great deal of what we experience is an illusion of one variety or another, just not the kind slick and obvious enough to include in a coffee table book on illusions and paradoxes. But what is the purpose, then? What is a human supposed to take from a world whose content is so steeped in illusion? What is the lesson? Why illusion instead of direct truth, if you were God?
    Last edited by desiresjab; 06-04-2018 at 03:22 PM.

  10. #1135
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    I can compare reality to a card trick, i.e. an illusion. The hidden top card is called reality. However, you can see I am going to cheat. The edge of the second card is showing, and that is the one I intend to turn over. If you had not seen that small edge protruding, you would have been cheated without a clue and never been any the wiser. But you did see that edge. Sometimes in real life we see that small edge too. We can tell then that what we are seeing is an illusion. Without that edge we would be none the wiser, and most of the time we see nothing but what we sincerely believe to faithfully represent reality.

    We see no small edges protruding, so we assume we are viewing reality and not an illusion. That seems after all like a poor reason for judging something real. Did you ever have the feeling that illusion is operating all around you constantly and you are unfortunately ill-equipped to prove it?

    Go to any popular internet site of illusions. They show you how to recognize an illusion--as far as possible, that is. They show you the edge, then you can understand the trick. What about all the times we do not see an edge at all but are still viewing an illusion? Did you ever have the feeling these are very common events and not rare?

  11. #1136
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    Cosmology is deep and wide topic, thank you for waking it up!

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