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Thread: Proving that the Universe is not Observer-Mind-Dependant

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
    (my bold)

    Of course by default it proves itself, that's what it means to be a tautology. I can turn this around just as easily. If the order is incorrect, then the universe must be a subset, and the opposite conclusion follows.

    What it would take is an experiment, not a statement that basically says "If i am correct then i am correct". The scientific method is based on experiments, it is empirical.

    You complain that this is supposed to be a science forum, however it seems to be you that are having difficulty with the distinction between science and metaphysics.
    You don't get it do you. It can't be turned around - not unless you ignore the hard scientific facts which back it up. I gave you examples. You seem to have ignored them.

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aethelwulf View Post
    Notice, the second assertion is ''like'' a dream. In this instance, we are [likening] something to something else. This does not mean that reality is a dream - in fact our very consciousness dictates that being ''awake'' is something quite different to ''being asleep''.
    You can leave out the "like" if you want, i was merely suggesting that there are multiple ways of achieving this scenario, of which dreaming is only one. Another one would be having my brain linked up to a computer simulation. Or this entire universe, including my own brain, existing inside a computer simulation. And probably many more..

  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aethelwulf View Post
    You don't get it do you. It can't be turned around - not unless you ignore the hard scientific facts which back it up. I gave you examples. You seem to have ignored them.
    There are no, none whatsoever, scientific facts that back up the existence of an objective world. Unless you are going to claim that it's impossible for me to dream about carbon dating?

    So, again, please provide the scientific experiment that would show that this world is not created by my mind.

  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
    There are no, none whatsoever, scientific facts that back up the existence of an objective world. Unless you are going to claim that it's impossible for me to dream about carbon dating?

    So, again, please provide the scientific experiment that would show that this world is not created by my mind.
    We have scientific measurements which record photon's hitting off the retina. We have further scientific evidence which shows that this information goes into our neural networks as a two dimensional image. The only thing science cannot fully answer for is how the brain recasts this two dimensional image into the three dimensional phenomenon known as perception. This is perhaps the only unknown. The rest is very scientific.

    Saying we have no existence of the outside world, you may as well say that every scientific experiment is bogus. I find that extremely unlikely.

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
    You can leave out the "like" if you want, i was merely suggesting that there are multiple ways of achieving this scenario, of which dreaming is only one. Another one would be having my brain linked up to a computer simulation. Or this entire universe, including my own brain, existing inside a computer simulation. And probably many more..
    As I said, Neuroscience, the scientific theory which studies the chemistry of the brain and physiological make-up of the brain can quite clearly differentiate between the two. If you can't, then so be it.

    I have enough trust in science to know you claims are rubbish.

  6. #36
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    I will say that we never measure the world directly. Anything we collect from the outside world is recreated here in our brains. But these photons hitting off our retina are real physical representations of a real object reality we exist in. This is not evidence that the objective world does not exist. The fact that we gain this information from the outside is rather evidence supporting that an objective world actually exists.

    Now, these conversations have gone far off from the OP's original discussion... You've been feebly trying to prove the OP wrong because we cannot prove we are not ''constantly'' in a dream state. Your arguments are complete psuedoscience in its finest.

  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aethelwulf View Post
    We have scientific measurements which record photon's hitting off the retina. We have further scientific evidence which shows that this information goes into our neural networks as a two dimensional image. The only thing science cannot fully answer for is how the brain recasts this two dimensional image into the three dimensional phenomenon known as perception. This is perhaps the only unknown. The rest is very scientific.
    So you are stating that it's impossible for my mind to have made all that stuff up in a dream (or a computer simulation to have fed all that to my brain, or...)? If not, than those experiments don't really differentiate, do they?

    Saying we have no existence of the outside world, you may as well say that every scientific experiment is bogus. I find that extremely unlikely.
    Making the assumption that there exists an objective world is useful, that doesn't make it any less of an assumption though. Science has nothing to say on the matter, it is not a scientific question, it is not a hypothesis that can be falsified, in other words there exists no experiment that can falsify it either way.

    Or to quote the very first response you had in this thread:
    Quote Originally Posted by amazeofdeath View Post
    You can't disprove solipsism.

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aethelwulf View Post
    I have enough trust in science to know you claims are rubbish.
    Alright, i have been asking you this many times and you consistently ignored my question so i will make this a direct request:

    CM1: Provide an experiment that would falsify the hypothesis that the world is a product of my mind. Describe this experimental setup in detail, and specifically state what result would show that the world i perceive is not a product of my mind.

    Failing to do that, there are only two possible resolutions.
    Either you are unaware that a scientific hypothesis must be falsifiable and your knowledge of the scientific method which you claim to base your statements on can be seriously called into question, or you are aware of that but for some reason think that doesn't apply to the hypotheses you make up.

  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aethelwulf View Post
    Now, these conversations have gone far off from the OP's original discussion...
    The OP is a pure tautology, what else would you expect? You might as well have us discuss where is any statement.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aethelwulf View Post
    As I said, Neuroscience, the scientific theory which studies the chemistry of the brain and physiological make-up of the brain can quite clearly differentiate between the two. If you can't, then so be it.

    I have enough trust in science to know you claims are rubbish.
    Please take a deep breath. I understand you are getting upset at the reaction to your OP, but don't let yourself get angry.
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  11. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
    The OP is a pure tautology, what else would you expect? You might as well have us discuss where is any statement.
    I would be the first to congratulate you if you were right, but this word ''tautology'' has become quite the buzzword for you. Just because you keep repeating it, does not make the fact your direction in my expression is not scientific disappear. It is only scientific to consider systems where there is true chronological order which science agree's with. Your's is not agreed with science.

  12. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
    Alright, i have been asking you this many times and you consistently ignored my question so i will make this a direct request:

    CM1: Provide an experiment that would falsify the hypothesis that the world is a product of my mind. Describe this experimental setup in detail, and specifically state what result would show that the world i perceive is not a product of my mind.

    Failing to do that, there are only two possible resolutions.
    Either you are unaware that a scientific hypothesis must be falsifiable and your knowledge of the scientific method which you claim to base your statements on can be seriously called into question, or you are aware of that but for some reason think that doesn't apply to the hypotheses you make up.

    The fact we extract information from any experiment designed to probe reality is an experiment against your favor. Understand that and we might get somewhere.

  13. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by pzkpfw View Post
    Please take a deep breath. I understand you are getting upset at the reaction to your OP, but don't let yourself get angry.
    I'm trying.

  14. #44
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    Mathman

    I am open to new suggestions, but what you are suggesting is quite frankly, Hollywood material. Neuroscience is heavily in my favor. This is a science. What you are conjecturing is... ''let your brain seep from your ears'' openness. Thinking the world is a complete utter fabrication, a total dream state where we extract no objective information from any experiment which is designed to probe reality is ... absurd.

  15. #45
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    Once you realize that all the scientific evidence stacks in the proposal it goes my way, it is hard to consider it going another - sure, cling to these idea's that we live in a dream state constantly and reverse my argument - but yours is hardly scientific which is the whole point.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aethelwulf View Post
    Once you realize that all the scientific evidence stacks in the proposal it goes my way, it is hard to consider it going another - sure, cling to these idea's that we live in a dream state constantly and reverse my argument - but yours is hardly scientific which is the whole point.
    Nobody is saying the Universe is that way, they are simply saying that you've not been able to prove it isn't. Your argument depends on certain assumptions, and becomes (no matter how much you or anyone likes those assumptions) circular. That's not "scientific".
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aethelwulf View Post
    I would be the first to congratulate you if you were right, but this word ''tautology'' has become quite the buzzword for you. Just because you keep repeating it, does not make the fact your direction in my expression is not scientific disappear.
    You are mixing up several different aspects here. The argument you proposed is a tautology, irrespective of the truth-value of its conclusion/assumption. It is of the form . It would be just as tautological if you had presented it the other way round. As such there is not much more that can be said about the form of argument.

    Another aspect, what we have been discussing, is what should be, either "the mind is a function of the universe" or "the universe is a function of the mind". (this has no effect on the argument being tautological or not).

    You say it must be the former, i'm saying that neither is a scientific hypothesis, and thus neither can be proven nor disproven.

  18. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aethelwulf View Post
    The fact we extract information from any experiment designed to probe reality is an experiment against your favor. Understand that and we might get somewhere.
    The fact that i can dream about performing those experiments and getting those results invalidates your claim that these somehow differentiate. I'm not saying that the universe is a function of the mind, i'm saying that that hypothesis is unprovable either way.

    For every experiment you could come up with that purports to show that the world is objective i can state that i could just as well be dreaming about performing that experiment and getting that result. Understand that and we might get somewhere.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aethelwulf View Post
    Thinking the world is a complete utter fabrication, a total dream state where we extract no objective information from any experiment which is designed to probe reality is ... absurd.
    Yes it is absurd. But that is the point, you can't prove this beyond saying "it is absurd", which boils down to saying that you use the assumption that the mind is a function of the universe "because you like it". That may be true, but it is not a scientific argument. It's just a statement of preference.

    If you would have just said "i think it is absurd to think that the universe is a function of the mind", that statement wouldn't be challenged. The thing that is being challenged is your claim that you have proven this using the scientific method, which is simply false. Because that would imply that you have an experiment that shows that an objective world exists, which you must by now realize is impossible (i can always just dream about performing that experiment, just like i could have just dreamt up the entire field of neuroscience).

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    Quote Originally Posted by pzkpfw View Post
    Nobody is saying the Universe is that way, they are simply saying that you've not been able to prove it isn't. Your argument depends on certain assumptions, and becomes (no matter how much you or anyone likes those assumptions) circular. That's not "scientific".
    I don't need to though. His point is you can freely chose one way and the other without any consequences.

    My argument to him all along was that there is in fact a ''preferred directionality'' and it is the one science agrees with most. The way mathman makes it out is that this tautology is a complete disaster for my conjecture - but he's ignoring the hard scientific facts which back that directionality.

    It's like a theory, no one can ever [[prove]] a theory. There are however evidences which lean in the favor of one theory to another. Ignoring those evidences would be a disaster for science in general. We can't similarly just ignore the facts of the direction in which my expression goes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
    Yes it is absurd. But that is the point, you can't prove this beyond saying "it is absurd", which boils down to saying that you use the assumption that the mind is a function of the universe "because you like it". That may be true, but it is not a scientific argument. It's just a statement of preference.

    If you would have just said "i think it is absurd to think that the universe is a function of the mind", that statement wouldn't be challenged. The thing that is being challenged is your claim that you have proven this using the scientific method, which is simply false. Because that would imply that you have an experiment that shows that an objective world exists, which you must by now realize is impossible (i can always just dream about performing that experiment, just like i could have just dreamt up the entire field of neuroscience).
    Read above my comment to Pzkpfw. There are reasons we don't go down absurd paths in science - the main one is because of the evidence weighing an argument. Keep in mind my words also that you can never prove a theory - but some theories are more correct than others when it comes to explaining the mechanics of the world.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aethelwulf View Post
    I don't need to though. His point is you can freely chose one way and the other without any consequences.

    My argument to him all along was that there is in fact a ''preferred directionality'' and it is the one science agrees with most. The way mathman makes it out is that this tautology is a complete disaster for my conjecture - but he's ignoring the hard scientific facts which back that directionality.

    It's like a theory, no one can ever [[prove]] a theory. There are however evidences which lean in the favor of one theory to another. Ignoring those evidences would be a disaster for science in general. We can't similarly just ignore the facts of the direction in which my expression goes.
    How does science agree? What hard scientific facts?
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  23. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aethelwulf View Post
    There are reasons we don't go down absurd paths in science - the main one is because of the evidence weighing an argument.
    What evidence? You don't have any. If you're going to say "look at neuroscience etc", all that says is that your mind has a vivid imagination in creating this world around you.

    Keep in mind my words also that you can never prove a theory
    No, but a scientific theory must be falsifiable, which yours isn't. Ergo it is not scientific, it is metaphysics, it's a belief.

    As an aside, does this mean that you retract your claim that you have provided proof (in the scientific sense) for your hypothesis?

  24. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by pzkpfw View Post
    How does science agree? What hard scientific facts?
    In the direction of the expression you mean? Well, I used an example very early on. Studying biological systems, we appeared about 240,000 years ago. Assuming that our consciousness was unique in the universe, we can trace things that have far preceded our appearance in the animal kingdom. We also have a cosmological factor to consider. The universe certainly arranged itself very well in the absence of human consciousness... say a mere 10 million years after the first instant of the BB. We appeared very late in the universes history. There is plenty scientific evidence which backs that up well, meaning there is a preferred directionality in my expression.

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    I am not answering caveman anymore. He's asking questions I have already answered to him. We've actually covered these evidences way back. His memory must be failing him, but mine hasn't.

  26. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post

    No, but a scientific theory must be falsifiable, which yours isn't. Ergo it is not scientific, it is metaphysics, it's a belief.
    How do you know my theory is not falsifiable? I don't think you've thought this through long enough. If my ''directionality'' in my expression requires Darwin's theory, cosmological chronological order of events.... requires carbon dating and our precise measurements therego of our approximated appearance in the universe, then sure. My theory is falsifiable. Falsify carbon dating, Darwin's theory or even prove that we did exist when the universe was hot and only a fraction of a centimeter wide.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aethelwulf View Post
    In the direction of the expression you mean? Well, I used an example very early on. Studying biological systems, we appeared about 240,000 years ago. Assuming that our consciousness was unique in the universe, we can trace things that have far preceded our appearance in the animal kingdom. We also have a cosmological factor to consider. The universe certainly arranged itself very well in the absence of human consciousness... say a mere 10 million years after the first instant of the BB. We appeared very late in the universes history. There is plenty scientific evidence which backs that up well, meaning there is a preferred directionality in my expression.
    Again, you just show that your idea is circular.

    For example, you state that "we appeared about 240,000 years ago".

    But if the Universe was dependant on the mind of the observer, then that "evidence" would just be another one of the things that mind has "made up".

    There's no way to prove the objective "truth" of that "evidence".
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  28. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aethelwulf View Post
    we don't go down absurd paths in science
    My quantum mechanics course certainly didn't same that way

  29. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
    My quantum mechanics course certainly didn't same that way
    No one understands quantum mechanics. The very core of it is ... a mystery. However, theories backed with observational data preclude some theories are quite obviously less absurd than another.

    Here is a quick example. Gravity is a force produced by curvature and distortions. A radical and... absurd theory would be linking gravity directly to the electrostatic forces. Just as an example.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aethelwulf View Post
    I am not answering caveman anymore.
    I have asked you a direct question a couple of posts back, which you haven't answered. I asked you for a specific experiment and your reply was simply "neuroscience".

    His memory must be failing him, but mine hasn't.
    Maybe my memory is indeed failing me, but i seem to recall that last time i checked neuroscience was a scientific field, not an experiment.

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