This is the purpose of human life.
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01-08-2013, 02:49 PM
RE: This is the purpose of human life.
(01-08-2013 01:58 PM)Luminon Wrote:  I don't say there is anything unexplainable. I just say if American Founding fathers could weave a very nice constitution to conduct human affairs, by mere (as they put it) "nature and reason", then so can I.

Sure?

(01-08-2013 01:58 PM)Luminon Wrote:  And anyway, it remains to be seen what does this "physical" thing actually mean. The nature of reality is not yet determined and perhaps it never will entirely be. Make sure to tell me, when we pin down what is dark matter and dark energy. It is rather premature to appeal on physical universe, when we don't know what most of this physical stuff is.

You said that human brains were completely part of reality, but you go on to say that not all of reality/existence is physical. As in constructed from constituent subatomic particles? But then you say that matter and energy and their interaction constitute all of reality. That seems rather poorly articulated.

Dark matter and dark energy are extraordinarily difficult to study based on their nature. And yet their nature is an inevitable consequence of our current theories. They must exist in order to account for our observations, allowing for our understanding of interaction to be essentially correct.

So far as humans are concerned? So far as the universe may be said to be concerned? Interaction is existence. Non-interaction is non-existence. Physicality is interaction - governed by physics, as it were.

(01-08-2013 01:58 PM)Luminon Wrote:  Fine. I can't accept such an answer, because they taught me at the university informatics lessons that A = A is tautology. I've got to keep searching.

Well sure it's tautological. Therefore it's true Big Grin.

That there is something to search for is a grand presupposition indeed.

What is purpose? Can you define it concisely? Is there reason to believe such a thing exists?

(01-08-2013 01:58 PM)Luminon Wrote:  He very well may be, I have only heard of his problems with metrology. I heard that metrologists kept giving him different records of numbers of what the scientists measured as gravity constant. Maybe this was a mistake of scientists not to accept that gravity "constant" fluctuates, maybe the gravity is just too difficult to measure and maybe it pushed him away from the science altogether.
Anyway, I think the story is interesting. I'll do some googling on this.

The value of constants are, essentially, effects of our chosen units of measurement and their definitions. Constants are ratios.

That the uncertainty in measuring the ratio between mass and attractive force is much greater than that between charge and attractive/repulsive force is rougly commensurate with the disparity in strength of those interactions is not at all surprising.

Variation in reported values for g are on the order of one part in one thousand. And indeed the variation in historical values is outside the current range of uncertainty (this is also true of other fundamental constants). Such dramatic variation would have profound and extremely obvious effects. Such effects are not and have never been observed.

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01-08-2013, 03:09 PM
RE: This is the purpose of human life.
(01-08-2013 02:25 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  I knew it. I assure you, no marathon planner EVER , not ever once, consulted a philosopher on how to plot out the course of the marathon.
Well, it was a metaphor. Not a lucky one, but most people get the idea. It is good to have a good philosophic groundwork before you set out to do something, or you won't know if it was the right thing to do. I used a metaphor with running and I don't see what's so controversial about it.

(01-08-2013 02:25 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  You did sound like a theist imposing your views in the OP, and now you proved it. You don't threaten anything, and certainly not atheism in ANY way, by imposing your personal (hackneyed philosophical) opinions, which I see you did just discover. Yawn. You actually think many of us also haven't taken Philosophy 101 ?

Ladies and gentlemen, I present you with Egor II.
You seem to have a problem with the way how I say things, not so much with what I say. I don't know what to do about that.
Well, if you knew me, you'd knew that religion and atheism isn't a big topic for me, where I live (the godless, apathetic Europe). I've noticed that people who defend the lines of atheism against religion don't like to argue finer points in philosophy, they have a church and state to separate.

Yep, I've taken Philosophy 101, but also many other subjects. However, my teacher of Philosophy 101 made a great effort to teach us, that there are real, certain, necessary and general truths about the world and that the modern relativism, nihilism, multiculturalism, Cartesianism and ancient radical skepticism are fallacious. So don't expect me to respect these isms. If I see them occupy people's minds, I will treat them just like I would treat bad arguments for Christianity. Frankly, it pisses me off that the only certainties that people have nowadays are capitalism, taxes and death.
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01-08-2013, 03:37 PM
RE: This is the purpose of human life.
(01-08-2013 03:09 PM)Luminon Wrote:  
(01-08-2013 02:25 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  I knew it. I assure you, no marathon planner EVER , not ever once, consulted a philosopher on how to plot out the course of the marathon.
Well, it was a metaphor. Not a lucky one, but most people get the idea. It is good to have a good philosophic groundwork before you set out to do something, or you won't know if it was the right thing to do. I used a metaphor with running and I don't see what's so controversial about it.

(01-08-2013 02:25 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  You did sound like a theist imposing your views in the OP, and now you proved it. You don't threaten anything, and certainly not atheism in ANY way, by imposing your personal (hackneyed philosophical) opinions, which I see you did just discover. Yawn. You actually think many of us also haven't taken Philosophy 101 ?

Ladies and gentlemen, I present you with Egor II.
You seem to have a problem with the way how I say things, not so much with what I say. I don't know what to do about that.
Well, if you knew me, you'd knew that religion and atheism isn't a big topic for me, where I live (the godless, apathetic Europe). I've noticed that people who defend the lines of atheism against religion don't like to argue finer points in philosophy, they have a church and state to separate.

Yep, I've taken Philosophy 101, but also many other subjects. However, my teacher of Philosophy 101 made a great effort to teach us, that there are real, certain, necessary and general truths about the world and that the modern relativism, nihilism, multiculturalism, Cartesianism and ancient radical skepticism are fallacious. So don't expect me to respect these isms. If I see them occupy people's minds, I will treat them just like I would treat bad arguments for Christianity. Frankly, it pisses me off that the only certainties that people have nowadays are capitalism, taxes and death.

One problem,
"my teacher of Philosophy 101 made a great effort to teach us, that there are real, certain, necessary and general truths about the world and that the modern relativism, nihilism, multiculturalism, Cartesianism and ancient radical skepticism are fallacious"

You forgot one thing. "IN HIS OPINION".

That's what I object to.
You are preaching that what seems at the moment to you, to be "real, certain, necessary, and general (truths), (just EXACTLY like religion spouts), are what we MUST accept, and they are the end-all be-all, and YOU have discovered the ultimate Truth. Just like every other Tom, Dick, and Harry zealot, ever to cook up an "ultimate" meaning system. What pisses you off is totally irrelevant.

I'm glad you found something that you can find meaningful.
Don't try to shove it down the throats of people you don't even know, or assume they lead meaningless lives because they either disagree with you, or don't care a whit about what interests you.

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Those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music - Friedrich Nietzsche
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01-08-2013, 03:59 PM
RE: This is the purpose of human life.
(01-08-2013 02:49 PM)cjlr Wrote:  Sure?
Yes, reasonably sure. For example, I was able to deduce what is freedom or what is justice, something that politicians of Athens could not answer to Socrates.

(01-08-2013 02:49 PM)cjlr Wrote:  You said that human brains were completely part of reality, but you go on to say that not all of reality/existence is physical. As in constructed from constituent subatomic particles? But then you say that matter and energy and their interaction constitute all of reality. That seems rather poorly articulated.
Yes, I am dealing here with more of a visual processing than verbal and I have a hard time translating it. I don't want to say I'm like Dr. Temple Grandin who thinks completely in pictures, but I can't help doing it to some degree. And I can't see information or physical pattern in the same category as energy/matter. For one, energy can not be created nor destroyed, beyond some virtual particles on quantum level.
I see this as a way to avoid the philosophical problem of simulation, if we create people in computer simulation to such a degree that they feel and think, and then we erase them, is it a murder? I'd say it is not, because information processing does not take as much energy to embody a virtual person as the matter itself. As Pirates say, copying is not a theft and deleting is not a murder.

(01-08-2013 02:49 PM)cjlr Wrote:  Dark matter and dark energy are extraordinarily difficult to study based on their nature. And yet their nature is an inevitable consequence of our current theories. They must exist in order to account for our observations, allowing for our understanding of interaction to be essentially correct.
Yes. Said in a very vague and non-scientific philosophical way, our mind is open even to this aspect of reality, even if it's pretty much unknown. This is a good argument against positivism, that is so popular nowadays.
Our minds are also open to such concepts as mathematical ones, even though they physically do not exist.

(01-08-2013 02:49 PM)cjlr Wrote:  So far as humans are concerned? So far as the universe may be said to be concerned? Interaction is existence. Non-interaction is non-existence. Physicality is interaction - governed by physics, as it were.
I disagree. Smells like positivism to me Dodgy Schroedinger's cat does not cease to exist in a box, only its quantum state remains undetermined. Physics is a human field of knowledge. Knowledge is based on interaction, not existence.

(01-08-2013 02:49 PM)cjlr Wrote:  That there is something to search for is a grand presupposition indeed.
Yes, but it is a justified one. If you presume anything else, you will never learn anything. The trick is to use the presupposition NOT AS A GOAL, but as a METHOD, as a hypothesis to test.
As I said, some choices lead to reality, some don't.

(01-08-2013 02:49 PM)cjlr Wrote:  What is purpose? Can you define it concisely? Is there reason to believe such a thing exists?
I would define the purpose as a synergic interaction with a greater integrated system. Wow, what a deep thought! Consider

Which means, the better integrated we become in our interactions and the more synergic this interaction becomes, the more meaning of life we will get from it. However, our interaction in the system may greatly change to be synergic. Our primitive ancestors were not in a synergic relationship with nature, it was more of a parasitism or symbiosis at best. But I believe people can actually restore and improve the nature through geoengineering projects - building coral reefs, foresting deserts and so on.

Yes, there is a reason to believe that such a thing exists, because we already are participants in many greater integrated systems. Some of them we created (relationships, family, nation, etc.), some are natural (biosphere, universe) and it is well-possible that there are other greater integrated systems that we did not discover yet and so there is more meaning to be discovered. Of course that will sound like woo.

(01-08-2013 02:49 PM)cjlr Wrote:  The value of constants are, essentially, effects of our chosen units of measurement and their definitions. Constants are ratios.

That the uncertainty in measuring the ratio between mass and attractive force is much greater than that between charge and attractive/repulsive force is rougly commensurate with the disparity in strength of those interactions is not at all surprising.

Variation in reported values for g are on the order of one part in one thousand. And indeed the variation in historical values is outside the current range of uncertainty (this is also true of other fundamental constants). Such dramatic variation would have profound and extremely obvious effects. Such effects are not and have never been observed.
Makes sense. But recently I heard that some neutrino emissions from the Sun changed the radioactive decay rate recently for about 1 % and so I thought, what the hell, maybe this constant stuff isn't as constant as we thought.
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01-08-2013, 04:40 PM (This post was last modified: 01-08-2013 04:54 PM by Luminon.)
RE: This is the purpose of human life.
(01-08-2013 03:37 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  One problem,
"my teacher of Philosophy 101 made a great effort to teach us, that there are real, certain, necessary and general truths about the world and that the modern relativism, nihilism, multiculturalism, Cartesianism and ancient radical skepticism are fallacious"

You forgot one thing. "IN HIS OPINION".

That's what I object to.
You are preaching that what seems at the moment to you, to be "real, certain, necessary, and general (truths), (just EXACTLY like religion spouts), are what we MUST accept, and they are the end-all be-all, and YOU have discovered the ultimate Truth. Just like every other Tom, Dick, and Harry zealot, ever to cook up an "ultimate" meaning system. What pisses you off is totally irrelevant.

I'm glad you found something that you can find meaningful.
Don't try to shove it down the throats of people you don't even know, or assume they lead meaningless lives because they either disagree with you, or don't care a whit about what interests you.
Well, in that case I must wonder if you really took Philosophy 101. Because it was about certain fundamental assumptions about reality, that we have to make, in order to make the knowledge of anything even a possibility.

It is such a basic stuff that I even wonder why you have a problem with it. However, back in ye olde days there were "radical skeptics" like Gorgias, who had an opinion, that it is impossible to know anything. Well then, if it's impossible to know anything, how comes they're so sure of their own radical skepticism? That would be undermining one's own position.
There were stoics who had an opinion, that all is opinion and all opinions are equally valid. Well then, that would mean that even the opinion that not all opinions are equally valid would be valid. Which is a self-contradiction.
And I already mentioned the problem with empiricism, regression ad infinitum. How do you prove empirically, that empiricism is true? How do you empirically prove, that every human is mortal? (don't even think about it, Earmuffs!)

Today we have ideologies that clearly haven't taken to the Philosophy 101, such as multiculturalism, nihilism and yes, theism. Descartes resorted to theism to resolve an ancient philosophic problem and he was wrong to do so, he threw away his life's work.

This is what I mean. This very basic fundamental stuff that we take for granted and then we violate it. I don't see what problem do you see in it, in your place I would welcome it as a high ground against people's OPINIONS, religious beliefs, outdated traditions and disempowering isms. This is not zealotry, this is a logical necessity. Science is based on this stuff. For centuries science relied directly on philosophic basis, when science had yet no impressive gadgets to prove its reliability. I don't see how we are in conflict here.
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01-08-2013, 05:01 PM (This post was last modified: 01-08-2013 05:05 PM by fstratzero.)
RE: This is the purpose of human life.
purpose
1. The object toward which one strives or for which something exists

Purposes are something living beings give an object. For example rocks have no purpose, but the do have a process that brought about their existence. Once encountered by a living being, a rock may be used for many different things. What those rocks are used for is their purpose. That purpose of course exists until to goal is accomplished or the rock breaks and loses it's usefulness, thus losing its purpose.

In our human world we all know how we came into existence, yet want some kind of goal to work towards. The reason we exist is that our parents had sex. What purpose we give our own lives is something we have to give our selves.

Our purpose in biological terms is to reproduce adding to the genetic diversity of our species in hopes that our contribution genetically speaking will have some kind of advantage.

TL;DR Human existence has an explanation. The purpose of life is something you have to give to your own life.

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01-08-2013, 05:11 PM (This post was last modified: 01-08-2013 06:53 PM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: This is the purpose of human life.
(01-08-2013 04:40 PM)Luminon Wrote:  Well, in that case I must wonder if you really took Philosophy 101. Because it was about certain fundamental assumptions about reality, that we have to make, in order to make the knowledge of anything even a possibility.

It is such a basic stuff that I even wonder why you have a problem with it. However, back in ye olde days there were "radical skeptics" like Gorgias, who had an opinion, that it is impossible to know anything. Well then, if it's impossible to know anything, how comes they're so sure of their own radical skepticism? That would be undermining one's own position.
There were stoics who had an opinion, that all is opinion and all opinions are equally valid. Well then, that would mean that even the opinion that not all opinions are equally valid would be valid. Which is a self-contradiction.
And I already mentioned the problem with empiricism, regression ad infinitum. How do you prove empirically, that empiricism is true? How do you empirically prove, that every human is mortal? (don't even think about it, Earmuffs!)

Today we have ideologies that clearly haven't taken to the Philosophy 101, such as multiculturalism, nihilism and yes, theism. Descartes resorted to theism to resolve an ancient philosophic problem and he was wrong to do so, he threw away his life's work.

This is what I mean. This very basic fundamental stuff that we take for granted and then we violate it. I don't see what problem do you see in it, in your place I would welcome it as a high ground against people's OPINIONS, religious beliefs, outdated traditions and disempowering isms. This is not zealotry, this is a logical necessity. Science is based on this stuff. For centuries science relied directly on philosophic basis, when science had yet no impressive gadgets to prove its reliability. I don't see how we are in conflict here.

Dude.

"I ceased to exist once during meditation. Atoms of my body kept going on for the while and they were kind enough to record the experience for me. It was a very memorable, unmistakable feeling. I assure you, you'd know."

Seriously ?
And you actually think anyone here is going to take anything say seriously ?

(01-08-2013 04:40 PM)Luminon Wrote:  What is the purpose of human life?
As for the purpose of life, do not assume that we already assumed this purpose.

The sentence is meaningless.
Obviously English is not your strong suit. What does "assumed this purpose" even mean ? That string of words is devoid of meaning, in the English language.

(01-08-2013 04:40 PM)Luminon Wrote:  Obviously it's not very obvious, so we need to do some soul-searching. So this is what's in my soul:

This is an atheist site. Before you ask that, you have to demonstrate what a "soul" is. There is no such entity. What does that string of words/letters even mean ?

(01-08-2013 04:40 PM)Luminon Wrote:  We as human beings can be in contact with this very strange but beautiful thing, called reality, more precisely, the world of ideas, world of perfect forms. I mean, there's no perfect circle in the world, but we look at some lopsided approximately round scribble and we think, "Ah, a circle! The 2*pi*radius!" We look at a court and prison and we think, "Ah, that's an attempt at justice! You know, the idea that reaction should be somewhat approximate to action. That's what this Hamurabbi guy meant with that eye for eye stuff." We look at a thing and we can sometimes see the "form" behind it. Nature is made of these principles, for those who have eyes and mind to see.

Drivel. You have not demonstrated, (as I said before), that just because humans can imagine a geometric form, (which if actually existed as a physical object, I can PROVE to you, is never actually "perfect" secondary to Quantum Uncertainty). Every imagined form, is just that. A mental representation of an object, which in EVERY actual physical manifestation, is IMPERFECT, thus there is in the minds of Quantum scientists NO "perfect forms", only probabilities. All a range of possible positions. You may imagine a perfect form, but it's only because you are ignorant of Quantum Mechanics, which is a sum of probabilities. What YOU, (and YOU alone), image as your fictitious-beautiful world, is in fact a complete fantasy world. It does not exist, except as an idealized fiction. Thus your premise is INVALID.
Similarly, there is no "perfect state" of justice. Judicial systems attempt, the best they can, to return the universe to a state of "justice". They NEVER EVER succeed. It was not in one BEFORE a crime was committed, and certainly is never in one after. Thus, it is not even possible to *imagine* a perfect state of justice, without endowing humans with supernatural powers. It is impossible to accomplish. Can they bring a murdered persons back to life ? Do humans agree on what are appropriate punishments ? No. Never. So your two lame examples are destroyed, and utterly false. You built your "idealism" on fallacious assumptions. There is no "ideal" anything. Humans NEVER agree on what a "perfect" anything is, and it shifts and changes from culture to culture, and person to person. What is "being in touch with the perfect" to you, is 100% relative . Artists do not "steal" from Platonic (perfect) forms. You obviously NEVER went to an abstract art exhibit, where any "perfect" form is an anathema, and "perfection" is "ugly". You are seeking to IMPOSE your values: cultural, artistic, philosophical and most of all , WESTERN, onto everyone, and then the ULTIMATELY arrogant notion, saying YOUR values are THE values which give meaning to OTHER'S lives.

Sorry. It's bullshit.

(01-08-2013 04:40 PM)Luminon Wrote:  It is such a basic stuff that I even wonder why you have a problem with it.

No. You demand others speak ONLY in your "language". Get used to the fact they don't and won't. Your drivel is meaningless.

(01-08-2013 04:40 PM)Luminon Wrote:  So, what do we do about it? Get these ideas, of course. We must access these ideas for inspiration. And then we need some skills to express these ideas in a very practical, tangible way. We can only gather and express inspiration in a way that suits us, that for which we have instruments and knowledge. Knowledge is the vocabulary of inspiration. Inspiration doesn't tell you anything new, it arranges the knowledge that is already in your head in a way that feels just right, like when letters are arranged into words. So you really need to be educated in many various areas of experience in order to be creative and inspired, just like you need an alphabet to write.

Thank you for admitting, everyone seeks and discovers what "feels right". Where you got it wring, is assuming the only way to "write" is in YOUR alphabet.

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01-08-2013, 05:32 PM (This post was last modified: 01-08-2013 05:43 PM by Luminon.)
RE: This is the purpose of human life.
(01-08-2013 05:11 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  Dude.

"I ceased to exist once during meditation. Atoms of my body kept going on for the while and they were kind enough to record the experience for me. It was a very memorable, unmistakable feeling. I assure you, you'd know."

Seriously ?
And you actually think anyone here is going to take anything say seriously ?
I don't worry about that. Being genuine is more important. I'd say it is a better tactics in the long run, than censoring myself. You say I should work on my public relation skills, right? Less quirky humor, less poetry, wordplays and only one meaning per sentence. I've got enough of that in real life. Atheists are not the only ones who comes to the forum to vent Wink

Seriously, I literally meant that "I" ceased to exist for a moment. IOW, this guy underwent a phenomenon of dis-identification. I am still unable to think of that experience as mine. There was an awareness, but no person of my name to ascribe it to. Surely a neurologist could point at the culprit areas of the brain.

OK dude, seriously, you need to learn how to provide a specific, constructive feedback. Obviously, I'm too thick-headed to care. So stick to the point please, my feelings can take it. Say it: "You make an impression of being untrustworthy." "You seem mentally unstable, insane, hallucinating." "You seem to be a secret drug user." "You are confusing and confused." "There is a such and such way to speak about extraordinary experiences and notions to normal people, you should try it."
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01-08-2013, 06:03 PM
RE: This is the purpose of human life.
In that case, you're full of shit.
See above. Tongue

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Those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music - Friedrich Nietzsche
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01-08-2013, 06:30 PM
RE: This is the purpose of human life.
(01-08-2013 03:59 PM)Luminon Wrote:  Yes, reasonably sure. For example, I was able to deduce what is freedom or what is justice, something that politicians of Athens could not answer to Socrates.

I didn't mean, are you sure. Just - yes? Okay?

(01-08-2013 03:59 PM)Luminon Wrote:  Yes, I am dealing here with more of a visual processing than verbal and I have a hard time translating it. I don't want to say I'm like Dr. Temple Grandin who thinks completely in pictures, but I can't help doing it to some degree. And I can't see information or physical pattern in the same category as energy/matter. For one, energy can not be created nor destroyed, beyond some virtual particles on quantum level.
I see this as a way to avoid the philosophical problem of simulation, if we create people in computer simulation to such a degree that they feel and think, and then we erase them, is it a murder? I'd say it is not, because information processing does not take as much energy to embody a virtual person as the matter itself. As Pirates say, copying is not a theft and deleting is not a murder.

Okay. But mass-energy is conserved. All energy is possessed of mass. All mass is possessed of energy. E=mc^2 and all that! Information is configuration, and it must be stored somehow.

(01-08-2013 03:59 PM)Luminon Wrote:  Yes. Said in a very vague and non-scientific philosophical way, our mind is open even to this aspect of reality, even if it's pretty much unknown. This is a good argument against positivism, that is so popular nowadays.
Our minds are also open to such concepts as mathematical ones, even though they physically do not exist.

Okay.

(01-08-2013 03:59 PM)Luminon Wrote:  I disagree. Smells like positivism to me Dodgy Schroedinger's cat does not cease to exist in a box, only its quantum state remains undetermined. Physics is a human field of knowledge. Knowledge is based on interaction, not existence.

No, interaction is existence. I mean that quite literally; if an object interacts with nothing, it affects nothing, and its 'existence' is indistinguishable from nothing.

I wouldn't identify as a positivist, but you could well accuse me of being one, insofar as the mind is 'merely' (as such a characterization is disingenuous) an emergent chaotic system subject to the same physical interaction as everything else.

(01-08-2013 03:59 PM)Luminon Wrote:  Yes, but it is a justified one. If you presume anything else, you will never learn anything. The trick is to use the presupposition NOT AS A GOAL, but as a METHOD, as a hypothesis to test. As I said, some choices lead to reality, some don't.

So, presuppose it exists because one cannot look for it if it doesn't. Shades of theism...

But no, "maybe there's nothing to find" doesn't mean stop looking; that's hardly what I meant, at least.

(01-08-2013 03:59 PM)Luminon Wrote:  I would define the purpose as a synergic interaction with a greater integrated system. Wow, what a deep thought! Consider

The correct form of the word is 'synergistic', not 'synergic' as you use here. I'm not trying to be snarky by pointing that out, but if I recall correctly English is not your first language and if it were me I'd certainly like to be corrected.

All action is by definition synergistic within a greater integrated system. Now who's talking tautologies?

(01-08-2013 03:59 PM)Luminon Wrote:  Which means, the better integrated we become in our interactions and the more synergic this interaction becomes, the more meaning of life we will get from it. However, our interaction in the system may greatly change to be synergic. Our primitive ancestors were not in a synergic relationship with nature, it was more of a parasitism or symbiosis at best. But I believe people can actually restore and improve the nature through geoengineering projects - building coral reefs, foresting deserts and so on.

Yes, there is a reason to believe that such a thing exists, because we already are participants in many greater integrated systems. Some of them we created (relationships, family, nation, etc.), some are natural (biosphere, universe) and it is well-possible that there are other greater integrated systems that we did not discover yet and so there is more meaning to be discovered. Of course that will sound like woo.

Ah - so then, your view is that we can somehow be more or less integrated within other (?) 'systems'. I'm afraid you'll have to explore this further. How does one define and quantify synergy or integration, in order that there be either more or less? What constitutes a system?

Our ancestors were no more parasitic (!) than, y'know, any other form of life that has ever existed (and actually, rather less than some...). They were not symbiotic in the conventional biological sense either.

It's not woo until you introduce woo. I said in my own post that I thought it was interesting, the expanding scope of consideration we impart our actions. That on its own is not woo. If what you're getting at is something similar, then I agree.

(01-08-2013 03:59 PM)Luminon Wrote:  Makes sense. But recently I heard that some neutrino emissions from the Sun changed the radioactive decay rate recently for about 1 % and so I thought, what the hell, maybe this constant stuff isn't as constant as we thought.

Not a thing I can recall hearing about.

Scientists are of course human. Consider the history of the accepted charge value of the electron. Improvements in technology from Millikan's original result gave better data, but those published were almost exclusively within the error of previous results. They still tended to correct, and were improvements, but there is that conservative element in human nature...

And recall the superluminal particles detected a couple years ago - traced to a poor fibre connection.

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