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The purpose of human life is reasonably a scientific, aka non-theistic topic!


thoughtfuhk
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The result of pondering whether human life was purposeless or not, lead me to conceive an early hypothesis, somewhat detailed in some earlier threads:

  1. Why is the purpose of human life reasonably to create Artificial General Intelligence?
  2. Consciousness causes higher entropy compared to unconscious states in the human brain (Relates to thread above)

However, given my hypothesis above, upon discussions, especially atheistic persons tend to confuse teleonomy (purpose in the realm of science/objectivity) for the teleological argument, which is a religious/subjective concept contrary to teleonomy; where my threads concern teleonomy.)

KJcQf4n.png

Why aren't concepts such as teleonomy more well known? 

What other hypotheses or theories (based on hard science) are you aware of, concerning where humans may be headed?

Edited by thoughtfuhk
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Humans exist to reproduce DNA, we do that by being social animals and cooperating in the effort to build a society that helps us reproduce DNA. That is how I see it at its most basic. However there are lots of nuances to that purpose and those nuances are what make us individuals... 

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3 hours ago, Moontanman said:

Humans exist to reproduce DNA, we do that by being social animals and cooperating in the effort to build a society that helps us reproduce DNA. That is how I see it at its most basic. However there are lots of nuances to that purpose and those nuances are what make us individuals... 

1.) The AGI goal reasonably surpasses the old DNA persistence concept. (i.e. AGI may not necessarily require the reproduction of DNA.)

2.) Nature tends to use things to make other things that access more and more macroscopic states, and as such, humans or DNA based things reasonably shan't be the last generally intelligent things, as AGI (that will likely be brought about by humans) shall likely access more states.

 

Edited by thoughtfuhk
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11 hours ago, thoughtfuhk said:

The result of pondering whether human life was purposeless or not, lead me to conceive an early hypothesis, somewhat detailed in some earlier threads:

  1. Why is the purpose of human life reasonably to create Artificial General Intelligence?
  2. Consciousness causes higher entropy compared to unconscious states in the human brain (Relates to thread above)

However, given my hypothesis above, upon discussions, especially atheistic persons tend to confuse teleonomy (purpose in the realm of science/objectivity) for the teleological argument, which is a religious/subjective concept contrary to teleonomy; where my threads concern teleonomy.)

KJcQf4n.png

Why aren't concepts such as teleonomy more well known? 

What other hypotheses or theories (based on hard science) are you aware of, concerning where humans may be headed?

1

my bold

On hard science none, but for example: Omega point: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Omega_Point

Let me just note that there is a difference between "purpose" and "heading".

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35 minutes ago, tuco said:

my bold

On hard science none, but for example: Omega point: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Omega_Point

Let me just note that there is a difference between "purpose" and "heading".

1.) I was aware of the Omega Point concept. (I discovered that concept while listening to one of Jeurgen Schmidhuber's talks a few years ago)

2.) Apart from the spelling of those words, I don't detect a significant difference in those words, especially as per Wikipedia/teleonomy:

a.) headed definition: "having a heading or course."

b.) purpose definition: "an intended or desired result; end; aim; goal."

 

Edited by thoughtfuhk
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10 minutes ago, thoughtfuhk said:

2.) Apart from the spelling of those words, I don't detect a significant difference in those words, especially as per Wikipedia/teleonomy:

a.) headed definition: "having a heading or course."

b.) purpose definition: "an intended or desired result; end; aim; goal."

 

That is an enormous difference in my lexicon. A boulder dislodged from a mountainside by an earthquake has a heading, but it has no purpose.

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11 minutes ago, Area54 said:

That is an enormous difference in my lexicon. A boulder dislodged from a mountainside by an earthquake has a heading, but it has no purpose.

1.) What about course (in headed definition) or aim (in purpose definition)? 

2.) Separately, as per teleonomy, perhaps that dislodged boulder's activity may consist of some purpose-driven context? 

Teleonomy: "Teleonomy is closely related to concepts of emergence, complexity theory,[16] and self-organizing systems.[17] It has extended beneath biology to be applied in the context of chemistry..."

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1 hour ago, thoughtfuhk said:

1.) What about course (in headed definition) or aim (in purpose definition)?

What about them? The second denotes intent. Course may include intent, but need not. Heading might, in some contexts, contain a whiff of intent, but it would generally be absent. They are contrasting words, rather than different ways of saying the same thing.

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2 hours ago, thoughtfuhk said:

2.) Apart from the spelling of those words, I don't detect a significant difference in those words, especially as per Wikipedia/teleonomy:

That is ironic (and bizarre) as you are referring to teleonomy, which: "is sometimes contrasted with teleology, where the latter is understood as a purposeful goal-directedness brought about through human or divine intention."

And that is exactly the distinction that you are pretending doesn't exist.

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On 3/31/2018 at 11:08 AM, thoughtfuhk said:

1.) The AGI goal reasonably surpasses the old DNA persistence concept. (i.e. AGI may not necessarily require the reproduction of DNA.)

2.) Nature tends to use things to make other things that access more and more macroscopic states, and as such, humans or DNA based things reasonably shan't be the last generally intelligent things, as AGI (that will likely be brought about by humans) shall likely access more states.

 

 

DNA exists, it's properties are well known if not completely understood, "AGI" is a concept with no real world existence.

23 hours ago, thoughtfuhk said:

1.) I was aware of the Omega Point concept. (I discovered that concept while listening to one of Jeurgen Schmidhuber's talks a few years ago)

2.) Apart from the spelling of those words, I don't detect a significant difference in those words, especially as per Wikipedia/teleonomy:

a.) headed definition: "having a heading or course."

b.) purpose definition: "an intended or desired result; end; aim; goal."

 

 

I've seen waves on a beach sort out shapes of broken bricks into amazingly complex shapes and I was able to predict which shapes would be next in line but the surf had no idea what is was doing. In fact the surf is about as purposeless a process there is but it was not random and it appeared to have both purpose and a goal... Both were an illusion...  

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On 3/31/2018 at 1:54 PM, Strange said:

That is ironic (and bizarre) as you are referring to teleonomy, which: "is sometimes contrasted with teleology, where the latter is understood as a purposeful goal-directedness brought about through human or divine intention."

And that is exactly the distinction that you are pretending doesn't exist.

1.) Crucially both "purpose" and "heading"  may concern science.

2.) Thus, I don't detect the relevance of your point; for neither of those words especially concerns religion, and both may concern goals/science.

3.) What significance do you feel your response above generates? Or do you feel intention necessitates religion/deities, and cannot exist in the realm of science as per Wikipedia/teleonomy?

On 3/31/2018 at 1:46 PM, Area54 said:

What about them? The second denotes intent. Course may include intent, but need not. Heading might, in some contexts, contain a whiff of intent, but it would generally be absent. They are contrasting words, rather than different ways of saying the same thing.

4.) It looks like you still feel that intention necessitates religion/deities, and cannot exist in the realm of science as per Wikipedia/teleonomy.

5.) It's time to update your prior knowledge, for purpose/intention/goals/aims need not concern deities/religion/subjectivity, but may concern science/objectivity.

6 hours ago, Moontanman said:

 

DNA exists, it's properties are well known if not completely understood, "AGI" is a concept with no real world existence.

6.) Contrarily, AGI is not yet here empirically (although it does exist theoretically, and scientific theory is real world stuff).

 

6 hours ago, Moontanman said:

I've seen waves on a beach sort out shapes of broken bricks into amazingly complex shapes and I was able to predict which shapes would be next in line but the surf had no idea what is was doing. In fact the surf is about as purposeless a process there is but it was not random and it appeared to have both purpose and a goal... Both were an illusion...  

7.) Your opinion is noted.

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1 hour ago, thoughtfuhk said:

 

6.) Contrarily, AGI is not yet here empirically (although it does exist theoretically, and scientific theory is real world stuff).

It does exist theoretically? really? I would say hypothetically is giving it a bit more respect that it deserves.  

1 hour ago, thoughtfuhk said:

7.) Your opinion is noted.

So is yours... 

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2 hours ago, Moontanman said:

It does exist theoretically? really? I would say hypothetically is giving it a bit more respect that it deserves.  

 

There are several AGI theories, within the scientific community.

Quote

So is yours... 

That there are several AGI theories, is not my opinion.

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20 hours ago, thoughtfuhk said:

There are several AGI theories, within the scientific community.

That there are several AGI theories, is not my opinion.

I would say hypothesis not theory. A theory has a more specific meaning in science... 

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10 hours ago, thoughtfuhk said:

Scientific evidence doesn't care about what "you would say" (aka your unevidenced opinions)

  1. AGI Course from Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  2. Theoretical Foundations of Artificial General Intelligence
  3. etc

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_theory

Quote

A scientific theory is an explanation of an aspect of the natural world that can be repeatedly tested, in accordance with the scientific method, using a predefined protocol of observation and experiment.[1][2] Established scientific theories have withstood rigorous scrutiny and embody scientific knowledge.[3]

The definition of a scientific theory (often contracted to "theory" for the sake of brevity) as used in the disciplines of science is significantly different from the common vernacular usage of the word "theory".[4][Note 1] In everyday speech, "theory" can imply that something is an unsubstantiated and speculative guess,[4]the opposite of its meaning in science. These different usages are comparable to the opposing usages of "prediction" in science versus everyday speech, where it denotes a mere hope.

You are using the colloquial meaning which is closer to something you pulled out of your rectum while drunk last weekend.. .

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Teleonomy is a philosophical concept for those who are confounded by the natural worlds complexity and need terms to describe the interrelationship between inanimate causation and animate reaction. For me the use of the word "purpose" is the problematic. Change the word Purpose to Reason and there is very little to debate. I think everyone (biologists and philosophers) agree that all things happen for reasons. 

As water in the Amazon river twists and carves it way through the landscape the reason is gravity. The purpose is not to washout into the Atlantic Ocean. There is not a goal. The reason the Amazon washes out into the Atlantic is gravity.  Attaching goals to natural processes doesn't work though it is tempting to do when the reasons are yet fully understood. Before humans understood Earths orbit around the Sun any number of fables told of gods causing night. When reasons aren't known/undertsood projecting purpose can make a great substitute. 

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9 hours ago, Moontanman said:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_theory

You are using the colloquial meaning which is closer to something you pulled out of your rectum while drunk last weekend.. .

  1. Ironically, the url you provided above, is consistent with MIT's agi course, and the theoretical foundations of AGI.
  2. When I use the term theory, I refer to scientific theory, as opposed to "just a theory". (As an example, the atom was theorized prior to it's observation. Likewise AGI is as such.)
  3. Did you even bother to contact the content I presented above? (If you did, you wouldn't have stuck to your silly assumption regarding AGI)
6 hours ago, Ten oz said:

Teleonomy is a philosophical concept for those who are confounded by the natural worlds complexity and need terms to describe the interrelationship between inanimate causation and animate reaction. For me the use of the word "purpose" is the problematic. Change the word Purpose to Reason and there is very little to debate. I think everyone (biologists and philosophers) agree that all things happen for reasons. 

As water in the Amazon river twists and carves it way through the landscape the reason is gravity. The purpose is not to washout into the Atlantic Ocean. There is not a goal. The reason the Amazon washes out into the Atlantic is gravity.  Attaching goals to natural processes doesn't work though it is tempting to do when the reasons are yet fully understood. Before humans understood Earths orbit around the Sun any number of fables told of gods causing night. When reasons aren't known/undertsood projecting purpose can make a great substitute. 

 

  1. Teleonomy occurs in philosophy, biology....complexity theory etc.
  2. As long as you recognize that purpose need not be constrained to religious/subjective endeavours, there ought to be no reason why you would select to disregard that the concept pf purpose may occur in the realm of science.
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On 3/31/2018 at 3:01 PM, thoughtfuhk said:

The result of pondering whether human life was purposeless or not, lead me to conceive an early hypothesis, somewhat detailed in some earlier threads:

We are/were just a random act of neuclosynthesis, in a universe/space/time that also was/is an apparent accident. I believe that's where science is pointing at this stage, but whether we will ever get or observe concrete evidence supporting that concept, I'm not sure. Any other speculation is really unscientific.

Quote

What other hypotheses or theories (based on hard science) are you aware of, concerning where humans may be headed?

Space: The final frontier! It may give us the answers, and is certainly where we MUST be heading.

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51 minutes ago, thoughtfuhk said:

As long as you recognize that purpose need not be constrained to religious/subjective endeavours, there ought to be no reason why you would select to disregard that the concept pf purpose may occur in the realm of science.

The progression and history of all evolutionary processes insisting known so how could an end-direction be determined? Teleonomy is speculative. I can see a car on a road and understand what a car is but that doesn't mean I know where it is going. For that matter drivers of cars are always sure where they are going. Guessing, even educated guessing, is a subjective endeavor. 

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12 hours ago, thoughtfuhk said:
  1. Ironically, the url you provided above, is consistent with MIT's agi course, and the theoretical foundations of AGI.
  2. When I use the term theory, I refer to scientific theory, as opposed to "just a theory". (As an example, the atom was theorized prior to it's observation. Likewise AGI is as such.)
  3. Did you even bother to contact the content I presented above? (If you did, you wouldn't have stuck to your silly assumption regarding AGI)

As an example, the atom was hypothesized prior to it's observation... but let us not split hairs! The OT deserves respect and there are other hypothesis around the OT question that are just as easily inserted into the blank on this. 

I've always been interested in the possibility that the purpose of life is to reproduce, spread and infuse into any unoccupied habitat. Looking at it from that perspective then it looks like the purpose of human life is to spread Earth life to other planets is plausible. Maybe a technological civilization is the Earth's version of gonads and we are the mechanism by which Earth Life spreads to new planets and the universe! 

Seriously dude, my hypothesis has just as much support as the purpose you propose... 

The purpose of life is to reproduce, to create new life and DNA! Even that is nothing but anthropomorphism taken to its extreme. I am having a real problem with the idea of purpose in this context. 

Where is that purpose coming from? Did AI seed the Earth so that eventually a new AI would emerge? If AI is the purpose of life then you, at the very least, are proposing that a metaphysical process is in charge of the Universe. Isn't that the same thing as supernatural?  

 

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12 hours ago, Ten oz said:

The progression and history of all evolutionary processes insisting known so how could an end-direction be determined? Teleonomy is speculative. I can see a car on a road and understand what a car is but that doesn't mean I know where it is going. For that matter drivers of cars are always sure where they are going. Guessing, even educated guessing, is a subjective endeavor. 

Robert Wright in Nonzero The Logic of Human Destiny puts it this way:

Quote

Some people may consider it cheating to use the word "destiny" when you mean not "inevitable" but "exceedingly likely." Would you consider it cheating to say that the destiny of a poppy seed is to become a poppy? Obviously, a given poppy seed may not become a poppy. Indeed, the destiny of some poppy seeds seems—in retrospect, at least—to have been getting baked onto a bagel. And even poppy seeds that have escaped this fate, and landed on soil, may still get eaten (though not at brunch) and thus never become flowers.

Still, there are at least three reasons that it seems defensible to say that the "destiny" of a poppy seed is to become a poppy. First, this is very likely to happen under broadly definable circumstances. Second, from the seed's point of view, the only alternative to this happening is catastrophe—death, to put a finer point on it. Third, if we inspect the essence of a poppy seed—the DNA it contains—we find it hard to escape the conclusion that the poppy seed is programmed to become a poppy. Indeed, you might say the seed is designed to become a poppy, even though it was "designed" not by a human designer, but by natural selection. For anything other than full-fledged poppyhood to happen to a poppy seed—for it to get baked onto a bagel or eaten by a bird—is for the seed's true expression to be stifled' its naturally imbued purpose to go unrealized.

1

more here: YOU CALL THAT DESTINY? - http://www.nonzero.org/intro.htm#grandiosity

Let me just note that Robert Wright is not a scientist, Nonzero is pop science, and while his opinions do not necessarily represent mine, I like the way he thinks about things.  

 

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14 hours ago, Ten oz said:

The progression and history of all evolutionary processes insisting known so how could an end-direction be determined? Teleonomy is speculative. I can see a car on a road and understand what a car is but that doesn't mean I know where it is going. For that matter drivers of cars are always sure where they are going. Guessing, even educated guessing, is a subjective endeavor. 

Contrarily, science seeks to be objective.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Objectivity_(science)

Also, teleonomy concerns likelihoods of outcomes regarding organic functions. No where are things specified as indubitably known.

2 hours ago, Moontanman said:

As an example, the atom was hypothesized prior to it's observation... but let us not split hairs! The OT deserves respect and there are other hypothesis around the OT question that are just as easily inserted into the blank on this. 

I've always been interested in the possibility that the purpose of life is to reproduce, spread and infuse into any unoccupied habitat. Looking at it from that perspective then it looks like the purpose of human life is to spread Earth life to other planets is plausible. Maybe a technological civilization is the Earth's version of gonads and we are the mechanism by which Earth Life spreads to new planets and the universe! 

Seriously dude, my hypothesis has just as much support as the purpose you propose... 

The purpose of life is to reproduce, to create new life and DNA! Even that is nothing but anthropomorphism taken to its extreme. I am having a real problem with the idea of purpose in this context. 

Where is that purpose coming from? Did AI seed the Earth so that eventually a new AI would emerge? If AI is the purpose of life then you, at the very least, are proposing that a metaphysical process is in charge of the Universe. Isn't that the same thing as supernatural?  

 

The hypothesis didn't say that "Agi was in charge".

The hypothesis largely concerns entropy, and entropy is not "supernatural".

1 hour ago, tuco said:

Robert Wright in Nonzero The Logic of Human Destiny puts it this way:

more here: YOU CALL THAT DESTINY? - http://www.nonzero.org/intro.htm#grandiosity

Let me just note that Robert Wright is not a scientist, Nonzero is pop science, and while his opinions do not necessarily represent mine, I like the way he thinks about things.  

 

Well said.

 

Albeot, the teleonomy page had long presented "apparent" purposefulness, rather than some indubitable purpose sequence, so we don't even need to contact Robert's word, beyond teleonomy to quickly see that teleonomy concerns likelihoods.

Edited by thoughtfuhk
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On 01/04/2018 at 4:38 PM, Moontanman said:

've seen waves on a beach sort out shapes of broken bricks into amazingly complex shapes and I was able to predict which shapes would be next in line but the surf had no idea what is was doing. In fact the surf is about as purposeless a process there is but it was not random and it appeared to have both purpose and a goal... Both were an illusion..

 

I like it. +1

@thoughtfuhk

Quote

The purpose

The beginning of the tile presupposes there is only one purpose?

Why can't lots of different 'purposes' be served at the same time.

Perhaps 'evolution' tries out lots of different possible progressions at once, some bear fruit, some do not (there is a biblical parable about this)

But perhaps all those trials are just in case or are just like a drug manufacturer haveiong a row of test tubes with (slight) variations on a theme.

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2 minutes ago, studiot said:

 

I like it. +1

Science may not care about what one likes. As such teleonomic purpose is no "illusion". 

You ought to be willing to update your prior beliefs, given new evidence!

Quote

@thoughtfuhk

The beginning of the tile presupposes there is only one ?

Yes.

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