A Question of Order
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12-11-2012, 07:27 PM
RE: A Question of Order
(12-11-2012 07:18 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  
(12-11-2012 07:10 PM)Starcrash Wrote:  If a tree falls in the forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?

How can we know if there was order in a place and time that we're unable to measure? We can't. But your friend's question assumed an answer to this question, and there needs to be positive evidence of that to proceed, not "reasonable doubt" that his premise could have been true at one time.
Because things had to have happened that were not observed to get us from point a to point b in the past, that led to the evolution of biological entities with the capacity to observe. Things don't need to be observed by biologically live entities to make them real. All over the universe they are happening without being observed. Things are changing without being observed. Also there is no absolute boundary between life , (to observe), and non-life. In order for Chemistry and Physics to proceed there must be "order".
Maybe. But I think you're making assumptions about things that we can't possibly know.

Consider if you had a pool table covered in balls scattered about the table. Did the balls end up there by carefully placed shots or by being scattered randomly? You may observe that players are taking turns making careful shots and say "it was probably always this way", but the problem with inductive reasoning is that it's always possible that this pattern doesn't go back to the beginning.

But in any case, I'm not saying that something has to be observed to know it happened... I'm saying that it has to be observed for us to know how it happened. That observation could be as simple as measurements that follow a pattern back to the Big Bang, and there may be such observations... I'm just not aware of them. And it also depends on what you mean by "order".

My girlfriend is mad at me. Perhaps I shouldn't have tried cooking a stick in her non-stick pan.
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13-11-2012, 01:12 AM
 
RE: A Question of Order
(12-11-2012 03:49 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  
(12-11-2012 03:26 PM)Egor Wrote:  Was there order before there were human beings to perceive it?
Yes. The order is not a product of our perception. Our perception mechanisms are the product of the order.

And by "order" we mean that which is opposed to chaos? Consider
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13-11-2012, 01:17 AM
 
RE: A Question of Order
(12-11-2012 05:35 PM)Ghost Wrote:  Hey, Egor.

Soooooooo your response is to suggest that I'm a closet pedophile. That... that's what you bring? Wow. Just wow.

I was gonna swear just now, but I've decided not to.



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13-11-2012, 01:18 AM
RE: A Question of Order
(13-11-2012 01:12 AM)Egor Wrote:  
(12-11-2012 03:49 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  Yes. The order is not a product of our perception. Our perception mechanisms are the product of the order.

And by "order" we mean that which is opposed to chaos? Consider
This universe operates according to observed "laws" (of Physics), and Probability.

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein
Those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music - Friedrich Nietzsche
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13-11-2012, 01:26 AM
 
RE: A Question of Order
(12-11-2012 05:35 PM)Mr Woof Wrote:  
(12-11-2012 04:57 AM)Egor Wrote:  A collegue at work posed this question: If there is no order in the universe, why doesn't the sun sometimes rise in the South. Huh
Stephen Hawking once said: "Why does the Universe go to all the bother of existing", a rather thought provoking comment in my view.

I will admit that question stops atheism in its tracks, but I also admit that saying "God did it.", while it may be true, is not a sufficient answer. But here's the thing: In all our experience, and underpinning our psychology is the concept of cause and effect. We cannot accept that something would come from nothing for no reason. Thus we find it more rational to postulate the existence of some kind of conscious entity at work in the creation of the universe.

Granted, it may not be true, but it's really not a rational position to assume it is not. You can be an agnostic; you can be a theist, but you really can't rationally be an atheist.
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13-11-2012, 01:27 AM (This post was last modified: 13-11-2012 01:31 AM by Reltzik.)
RE: A Question of Order
Let's see here.

First, tree falling in woods, order without witnesses. This is a two-parter. Part 1 is semantics, is it a sound if no one hears it? Like any semantics question, you find an agreed-upon reference or hash out a working definition and leave it at that. You're arguing conventions, not facts, so quit it and move on to something important. Part 2 is, how do we know if no one senses it? Obviously we don't, at least not directly. We extrapolate from similar incidents where we do know, with understanding of scientific principles allowing us a very broad notion of "similar" (eg, planetary orbits are similar to Newton's falling apple). The basic pitfalls of extrapolation all apply. But it's better than anything else we have.

Second, order. What we witness in the sciences is not an order of form (though that often arises) or of origin (though that also often arises) or of results, but rather an apparent order or pattern of behavior. Unless an asteroid inexplicably deviates out of its orbit, its behavior is orderly, even if it smacks into a planet. (That's a very orderly smack.) For the record, there's a bias here. If the behavior didn't have an apparent pattern to it, it'd still be the subject of scientists staring at whiteboard scribbles in frustration, rather than a scientific law. In a very real sense, science is a study of patterns. In actuality, any sort of divine intervention that violated those patterns would be DISorder.

Also, the sun DOES rise in the south. Stand at the north pole at an equinox, or on the antarctic circle a few days off from the southern summer solstice, or just visit Alabama and look outside during dawn. (Alabama isn't recommended, the climate there can get pretty inhospitable.)

"If I ignore the alternatives, the only option is God; I ignore them; therefore God." -- The Syllogism of Fail
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13-11-2012, 01:29 AM
 
RE: A Question of Order
(13-11-2012 01:18 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  
(13-11-2012 01:12 AM)Egor Wrote:  And by "order" we mean that which is opposed to chaos? Consider
This universe operates according to observed "laws" (of Physics), and Probability.

Yes, it certainly seems to, but that's not an answer. I'm asking if by "order" we mean a state that is not chaotic.

It's not a trap. You're atheistic world is not going to crumble if you answer it. No
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13-11-2012, 01:35 AM
 
RE: A Question of Order
(13-11-2012 01:27 AM)Reltzik Wrote:  Let's see here.

First, tree falling in woods, order without witnesses. This is a two-parter. Part 1 is semantics, is it a sound if no one hears it? Like any semantics question, you find an agreed-upon reference or hash out a working definition and leave it at that. You're arguing conventions, not facts, so quit it and move on to something important. Part 2 is, how do we know if no one senses it? Obviously we don't, at least not directly. We extrapolate from similar incidents where we do know, with understanding of scientific principles allowing us a very broad notion of "similar" (eg, planetary orbits are similar to Newton's falling apple). The basic pitfalls of extrapolation all apply. But it's better than anything else we have.

Second, order. What we witness in the sciences is not an order of form (though that often arises) or of origin (though that also often arises) or of results, but rather an apparent order or pattern of behavior. Unless an asteroid inexplicably deviates out of its orbit, its behavior is orderly, even if it smacks into a planet. (That's a very orderly smack.) For the record, there's a bias here. If the behavior didn't have an apparent pattern to it, it'd still be the subject of scientists staring at whiteboard scribbles in frustration, rather than a scientific law. In a very real sense, science is a study of patterns. In actuality, any sort of divine intervention that violated those patterns would be DISorder.

Also, the sun DOES rise in the south. Stand at the north pole at an equinox, or on the antarctic circle a few days off from the southern summer solstice, or just visit Alabama and look outside during dawn. (Alabama isn't recommended, the climate there can get pretty inhospitable.)

Well said.

However, a tree doesn't make a sound if no one is there to hear it fall. Sound is a conscious phenomena. Vibrations in the air may be a physical phenomena, but sound is always a conscious phenomena. And it's important to realize that, as it leads to an important argument for the existence of God put forward by George Berkeley in 1703.
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13-11-2012, 01:41 AM
RE: A Question of Order
(13-11-2012 01:35 AM)Egor Wrote:  
(13-11-2012 01:27 AM)Reltzik Wrote:  Let's see here.

First, tree falling in woods, order without witnesses. This is a two-parter. Part 1 is semantics, is it a sound if no one hears it? Like any semantics question, you find an agreed-upon reference or hash out a working definition and leave it at that. You're arguing conventions, not facts, so quit it and move on to something important. Part 2 is, how do we know if no one senses it? Obviously we don't, at least not directly. We extrapolate from similar incidents where we do know, with understanding of scientific principles allowing us a very broad notion of "similar" (eg, planetary orbits are similar to Newton's falling apple). The basic pitfalls of extrapolation all apply. But it's better than anything else we have.

Second, order. What we witness in the sciences is not an order of form (though that often arises) or of origin (though that also often arises) or of results, but rather an apparent order or pattern of behavior. Unless an asteroid inexplicably deviates out of its orbit, its behavior is orderly, even if it smacks into a planet. (That's a very orderly smack.) For the record, there's a bias here. If the behavior didn't have an apparent pattern to it, it'd still be the subject of scientists staring at whiteboard scribbles in frustration, rather than a scientific law. In a very real sense, science is a study of patterns. In actuality, any sort of divine intervention that violated those patterns would be DISorder.

Also, the sun DOES rise in the south. Stand at the north pole at an equinox, or on the antarctic circle a few days off from the southern summer solstice, or just visit Alabama and look outside during dawn. (Alabama isn't recommended, the climate there can get pretty inhospitable.)

Well said.

However, a tree doesn't make a sound if no one is there to hear it fall. Sound is a conscious phenomena. Vibrations in the air may be a physical phenomena, but sound is always a conscious phenomena. And it's important to realize that, as it leads to an important argument for the existence of God put forward by George Berkeley in 1703.
I'd classify that under semantics, as in, how are we defining "sound"? My default is to consider anything that a hypothetical observer could hear as sound, even if the observer isn't actually there. But hell, throw out an alternate definition, and if it isn't completely incoherent I'll accept it for the purposes of the discussion (but also keep one eye out for equivocation). The point is to argue ideas, not what words do or don't express the ideas.

"If I ignore the alternatives, the only option is God; I ignore them; therefore God." -- The Syllogism of Fail
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13-11-2012, 11:09 AM
 
RE: A Question of Order
So, did we ever come to a consensus here? Let me ask again: If there is no order in the universe, why doesn't the sun rise in the south? If there is order, who's the orderer?
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