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Is it the Universe created alone? Yes or not? Only Yes or Not.


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disarray,

 

But the important thing is what we are conscious of. How we manage it, is partially due to the fact that there really are sensations to be conscious of. Certain vibrations, certain chemicals that react with our sensors in such a way as that we feel the sensations. I am familiar with how the senses can be fooled and how the mind can fill in the blanks and such, recognize patterns and see faces in grill cheese sandwiches and the like, but that our consciousness is illusion, I just don't buy.

 

 

Perhaps I give more credit to the world, to provide me with something to be conscious of, than you do. Or perhaps you are stuck thinking that the true world, the thing as it is, is the real thing, and everything we know is just a shadow on the wall of Plato's cave. Even so, something is casting the shadow and you can not have a shadow, or an analogue, without the original object whose form is represented by the shadow, and a light source.

 

Regards, TAR


that your consciousness exists, without anything to be conscious of, is probably false

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Tar, your entire post is complete nonsense. It would be nice if the universe could be whatever we want it to be. Your version of the universe was disproved by relativity years ago. There is no univer

I will not believe that until I have evidence😂😜

In some areas, excluding ancient wisdom, the Romans were indeed less ignorant. In areas that relate to eternity and even perhaps infinity, they might very well have been more ignorant. You make a ve

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Tar:

Perhaps you should reread my post. I repeatedly made the point that it was an illusion that what one animal is aware of is the same as another person's awareness.... it is an illusion that one creature's consciousness is not literally isolated and separate from that of other creatures. At no point did I suggest that our consciousness itself was an illusion.

 

By the way, though, there are many psychologists and philosophers and even physicists who counter intuitively suggest that the concept of 'free will' itself is an illusion, and that, though sensations exist and we are aware of them..."we" are just along for the ride and that even our sense of self (as Hume declared long ago) is an illusion. But I don't necessarily espouse this claim.

 

I do think that there are "levels" or degrees of conscientiousness/awareness...I am less aware while in a deep sleep than when playing tennis. I have more awareness than a frog, who in turn has more awareness than a fly, I think I can safely presume. Indeed, there are many scientists and religious devotees who claim that everything has some degree of consciousness...another controversial claim. In any case, people seem to have determined in modern times that animals indeed have a degree of consciousness; the widespread belief through the ages seems to have been that animals did not experience consciousness nor felt much, if any, pain, despite their obvious physical reaction to being cut, etc.

 

Then there is the whole religious question (particularly in Eastern religions) as to whether our personal consciousness is linked to some greater consciousness (aka cosmic consciousness, Nirvana, state of enlightenment, etc.)

 

And at no point did I suggest that there was not something "out there" in the noumenal world that gave us our sensations. Indeed, I, for lack of a better phrase, referred to it as a vibrational field. Even quantum physicists today speak in t terms of there being an unknown and unknowable reality behind what we can perceive....not just Plato, as I mentioned before. But I think that it is somewhat misleading to suggest that there are objects in this vibrational field that directly correspond to objects we see..it would seem more reasonable to suggest that at the subatomic level, for example, everything is one big vibrational blur. In linguistic terms, the signifier (sensations) are not as similar to the signified (thing behind the sensations) as we assume.

 

I did not even mean to suggest that our sensations are less "real" than the reality behind our sensations....this is just the way that words such as "real" are used in everyday speech, because we all realize that people do have delusions when looking and listening to things around them, and also because people think of a car, for example, as being more real than our sensation of it....also, people realize perceptions can be mistaken. We might hear a car back fire, for example, and mistake it for a gun shot. Even putting on a pair of sunglasses reminds us that our vision can be easily modified, whereas we assume that the sun that we are protecting our eyes from is something that is real and can not be modified...it just "is what it is," so to speak.

 

Actually, it was Schopenhauer in modern times who emphasized the concept that our sensations are just as "real" as anything else in the universe....We are made of the same stuff as the universe in terms of our body and our consciousness....we are composed of as well as driven by natural forces. It seemed to follow logically for him that we were fools to just let nature compel us to live and reproduce in order to further nature's goal for living things....which was to survive and reproduce. He did have a way out from this pessimistic outlook, however, which was that we become aware that we are just pawns of nature and we renounce or at least become cynical about our desires to live and reproduce. (No doubt...evolutionary ideas colored the beliefs of Schopenhauer, Neitzsche, Freud, Wagner, and many innovative thinkers writing in the latter part of the 19th c. and the early 20th.)

 

Such thinking, culminating in WWI, led to the demise of Victorian spawned optimism in religion and the idea of the inevitable progress of civilization...and led to a general post-war sense of meaningless...giving rise to the 'lost' generation and then the 'beat' generation commingled with the existentialist movement (notably Camus and Sartre reiterating Nietzsche's claim that God was dead and suggesting that we were spiritually alone and estranged from the universe).

 

Sartre stressed the concept (in "Being and Nothingness") that our consciousness had an innate desire to rejoin the rest of the universe, but that the universe was too gooey, so to speak (as he did in his book, Nausea) to mingle with human consciousness...as if they were oil and water. Sartre was thus an atheist, who, like Camus somehow tried to find meaning in such a bleak world.

 

Heidegger, by contrast, felt that our consciousness was compatible with the rest of the universe and, in so many words, implied that we could return home to the universe by becoming less involved in the hustle and bustle (aka inauthentic existence) of everyday life...and immerse ourselves in correct silence and reception to the natural forces of the world. Thus, Heidegger, as did Schopenhauer, announced that his thinking was compatible with Buddhism later in life. Who knows whether the major Eastern religions are right in claiming that our consciousness is compatible with the rest of nature and will eventually blend with it completely after death.

 

So our consciousness is ultimately very personal, and we are ultimately alone in terms of our own unique personal sensations....though of course this is not a huge problem in day to day living given that we can communicate in so may ways and that our sensations are of course similar to each other. And such a separation of personal consciousness gives us our sense of privacy and identity: A bit of 'alone-ness' is probably a good thing.

 

 

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disarray,

 

Still, though one consciousness might have a different feeling about a thing or a different symbol to stand for a thing, the thing itself is still real and you knowing the thing and me knowing the thing, causes the thing to be the connection between us. Different places in the world have different languages, people can make sounds that are just jibberish to billions of others....but no matter what you call it, the meaning behind the words is the same. Snow is snow, the moon is the moon.

 

Regards, TAR

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Tar:

Well, yes, we can commun-icate because there are things in the world that we sense in a "commun" way. In any case, I did acknowledge in the first place that we communicate because we have things in common...I just noted that when one gets more precise, it becomes clear that the feeling that there is not a chasm between one person's consciousness and another is an illusion. The reality is that, ultimately, one persons consciousness, for whatever reason, is hermetically sealed from that of another. I guess this is an observation that might most interest philosophers and psychologists. On the other hand, it is perhaps at those moments when the party is over, or when one gets divorced, or when one has ones first argument with a loved one, that the realization that ultimately we are firmly encased and isolated in our own personal sensations and perceptions most fully strikes home...and we feel a deep sense of being alone. Indeed, the existentialists, among others, wrote quite a bit about "man's" sense of subjectivity and alienation. Thus, Tolstoy's Anna Karenina feels unable to express her existential sense of loneliness to anyone and asks near the end of the novel when she feels herself most cut off from society and her family because she has had an affair: “Is it really possible to tell someone else what one feels?”

 

In general, snow is snow, of course, but as an aside, I recall that there are those who point out that some countries have far more words for "snow," among other things, than other countries. More to the point, we often read that some words and phrases cannot be adequately translated from one country to the next, e.g., German and French words into English...but this is, admittedly, something that has more to do with abstract emotions and ideas than with objects. In any case, the concept that varying environmental as well as biological factors impact our personality tends to discourage us from shouting from the rooftops that, underneath the skin, 'all people are pretty much the same everywhere'. Cultural differences are real, and we ignore them at our own peril.

 

On a day-to-day level, we rarely know as much about others as we tend to assume that we do....another illusion, I suspect. This is particularly true when it comes to the "idealization" of heroes/parents/political leaders/movie stars/spiritual leader/gods, or to our infatuation of a romantic partner. The reality sinks in and the bubble bursts and we realize that the other person is not as perfect as we thought, nor as much like us as we thought....not as much that "perfect match" or 'twin spirit' or 'soul mate' that we thought they were. For married couples, for example, that daunting realization starts to set in, so we hear, when the honeymoon ends, or when they move in together, or when they have to raise a baby together, or when they have financial and political arguments, or disputes about how best to raise the kids, or when they stop making the effort to be 'so nice' all the time, or when someone leaves there clothes on the floor and dirty dishes in the sink, etc. etc.

 

Perhaps this need to idealize certain others is a manifestation of such things as some deep-seated loneliness and fear of abandonment.

 

Despite his intellectual foibles, I think Freud was onto something when he claimed that there were deep-seated, perhaps instinctual, desires to return to the womb, to idealize the mother, to be loved unconditionally, to return to some oceanic feeling of oneness with the universe, etc. People often seek to "chill" with, not just people with whom they have common interests, but, hopefully, with that one, special person who understands them completely, or at least far better than anyone else. One might also describe this longing as the need for security....if someone "like totally gets us" then we feel secure that they truly love us and will always be there for us...we have established a secure bond.

 

Many people in a relationship make such a big deal to others about how much they think the other person is so fantastic and unique as well as how much they are in love with them. In some cases, they are telling everyone about how much they love each other so that it doesn't look like they are just having casual sex, but, more to the point, because they want to prevent their partner from breaking up with them...If the general consensus is that their relationship is just based on physical attraction, then it is not much of a big deal if they break up (esp. if no children are involved), but if they publicly agree that they are 'truly in love' with a very special person, then it makes it harder for both or either one of them to break up....they have no reason (or excuse) to break up because true love is (supposedly) forever. This may be one explanation for the importance of publicly announcing ones love and getting public acknowledgement of this love in a marriage ceremony. In a sense, they pretend to be less alone and less different from each other in order to cement the bond between them. I don't mean to be too cynical, as it certainly can't hurt to focus on what you have in common with a partner, and to constantly reiterate to each other and to friends and relatives that, as a couple, you are truly and deeply in love....but the bottom line is the same...people get married and ritualize their love so as to avoid being alone as long as possible.

 

Perhaps also, the idea of forgiveness comes into this longing...if someone totally understands us and is very much like us, then we feel more secure that they will understand and forgive us when we goof up...as, for the most part, people feel like they had good intentions, even when they do something wrong....and are just misunderstood. In any case, it seems that there is a constellation of feelings involving unconditional love, feeling unique, feeling understood, feeling like someone, feeling a spiritual affinity, feeling the universe or God brought you together with someone, feeling forgiven, and feeling secure.

 


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disarray,

 

A lot there. I think I can associate with many aspects of what you said. This however goes more toward us operating from a standard play book, than being isolated forever from each other.

 

I look at it like this. Each of us operates from a particular point of focus. This focus is by definition a different point than the focus bounded by the next consciousness, but were we not thusly separated from the universe, we would not be able to notice it. And being that there is no place, other than the universe, to come from and be made out of, then a different point of focus, is simply that, a different view, of the same universe

 

There is nobody here that can say their universe is not this one, the one I call my universe, the one you call yours. So it is our universe and even if create alone, from a singularity, it is no longer a singularity, and there are multiple points of focus within it. So perhaps the answer to the thread question is that even if created alone, the fact that there is more than one place to stand within it, makes it not a lonely place. If you will, being not a singularity allows the universe to keep itself company.

 

Regards, TAR

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Tar,

 

You state, "This however goes more toward us operating from a standard play book, than being isolated forever from each other."

 

I'm sorry, I can only guess that you mean (without providing any evidence or reasons) that our minds are joined together after death...In any case, perhaps you could elaborate or clarify.

 

You also state that, "were we not thusly separated from the universe, we would not be able to notice it." I presume you mean that it is necessary that our minds are bounded. Well, yes, whether one is talking about spiritual existence or animal survival, having a sense of perspective and the concomitant sense of identity enables us to be conscious of ourselves as well as our universe/environment. It is relevant, however, that Hinduism and Buddhism, for example, both suggest that our consciousness does indeed return to the universe (after a series of non-competitive, yet moral-based conflicts while on earth), though with, perhaps, the loss of our personal ego. Nevertheless, if such religious speculation is true, I would suggest that it would make sense that our minds are still bounded even in such a state of Nirvana, though in parallel dimensions, much as they are on earth anyway...Perhaps the growth of consciousness as it cycles back and forth from microcosmic to macrocosmic states in various reincarnations is what T.S. Eliot partially had in mind when he wrote, "We shall not cease in exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time."

 

As an aside, I would suggest that if each of our minds (aka, consciousnesses) were not hermetically sealed and bounded, we could do such things as spend a day in someone elses body or read someone elses thoughts, etc. In short, there would be chaos and a complete breakdown in self-identity.

...................................

 

You suggest that the universe created humans (with their various personal points of view) in order to keep itself from being lonely (much as is said of God in Christian churches). This looks good on paper.... however, there is zero evidence (empirical or otherwise, apart from religious scriptures) that the universe has a consciousness of its own. On the one hand, you emphasize the idea that we have no empirical evidence for the existence of a multiverse, but then on the other, you are quick to jump to the conclusion that the answer to this thread is that the universe created us as companions. (Actually, this is similar to the claims of the German Idealists, particularly Hegel, who talk in quasi-religious terms about the individual's or an entire society's spirit rejoining the Spirit (aka Geist) of the universe after a series of dialectical and competitive conflicts....in particular he saw Ubermensch (aka supermen) such as Nietzsche, Schopenhauer and himself (all Germans) in particular, and the German/Aryan "race" in general as the culmination of this cosmic progression, and thus the superior race, thereby prefiguring the rise of Nazi Germany).

 

I don't see that you are really saying anything more than that we all live in the same universe, and that we all at least have that in common. I don't think anyone would dispute that, so I am not sure why you tend to stress that idea. Again, I agree with your reminders that we have things in common such as seeing the same object and communicating with the same language, or perhaps, being able to catch and throw the same object such as a Frisbee at a family picnic, etc.., But I think that such obvious reminders, merely serve, intentionally or not, to marginalize and avoid a discussion of the existential sense of loneliness that many people feel. It is that sense alone-ness and loneliness that I am trying to investigate, as well as the various ways that we try to escape our sense of alienation. Indeed, Heidegger, towards the end of Being and Time, goes to considerable length to explore the way that people try to ("inauthentically") avoid their sense of existential loneliness. (Ditto for Sartre in Being and Nothingness, as well as several other writers of that period and later on).

 

This sense of existential loneliness is related, I would suggest, at least in part, to the fact that people's minds are bounded, as well as the related feeling that they they are disconnected from their fellow human beings in a consumerist society that itself augments such feelings of alienation...as if each person is just a number; they also feel disconnected from the alleged "mind of God" or some alleged "mind of Nature."

 

It is this sense of loneliness that I am trying to explore....Since we cannot really answer the question as to, for example, whether there are other universes or other people on other planets, apart from citing mathematical formulas pointing in that direction, the best I can do, I guess, is to analyze the motivation behind asking the question itself as to whether we and/or the universe is alone.

 

Ultimately, I agree with you that the universe created bounded minds, or to be more precise, I agree that bounded minds developed out of the universe. I am not suggesting that any one religion is right or wrong, but, like the Buddhists and unlike the Hindus, however, I see no reason to assume that the entire Universe has a consciousness of its own, or like some anthropomorphic god, could feel the emotion of loneliness, as you seem to be claiming.

....................................

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disarray,

 

I like your knowledge of the different philosophers that I read in college while a philosophy student. I think perhaps over the years I somehow have joined various ideas of those philosophers, with my own muses and the thoughts of others I have talked to about life and religion and philosophy and formulated my own worldview from the composite. It is nice the way you link some of my thoughts with various thinkers...because it is reading their thoughts that probably gave me the ideas in the first place, and its nice to be reminded of the sources of the pieces of my worldview.

 

I don't however think of the universe as having a consciousness "of its own" , but I am 100percent sure that there is consciousness within the universe, and any such consciousness found within the universe is consciousness that belongs to the universe, because the universe is the containing entity.

 

Regards, TAR

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Tar

I agree with your last post. However, your post before that stated that "being not a singularity allows the universe to keep itself company." If I may paraphrase judging from the rest of that post, your point was that people see the world from different perspectives and therefore at different points in the world (or universe). Then you go on to state that the various different points of consciousness (aka, minds) that humans have allow the universe to have company. This suggested to me that you think that the universe had "emotions" such as loneliness. Since you state in your last post that you don't 'think of the universe as having a consciousness "of its own"', I suspect that you were just speaking metaphorically when you said people allow the universe to have company. Unfortunately, I think your use of metaphor here and elsewhere has quasi-religious connotations when describing people's role with respect to the universe. (Indeed, many a Christian will make the similar claim that God wanted to have humans in the universe just to keep himself company.)

 

In my recent remarks, I have been trying to suggest that people are seldom able to find the sort of unconditional love from other people that they seem to want so much, as if the desire for such companionship and love welled up from some deep instinctual and/or spiritual level....as if the ordinary amount of company or companionship that they could provide each other never seemed to be enough. Along these lines, a writer named Romain Rolland told Freud that he to,too, found religions to be just the manifestation of a human illusion, and that religions only developed because 'humans shared a common feeling of innate religiosity, an "oceanic" feeling in which the individual feels bonded with the entire world and the whole human race. It is a sense of oneness, boundlessness, limitlessness.'

 

In response to this explanation for the ubiquity of 'man's religious impulse, Freud, ever the biologic cynic, retorted that the desire to be loved by and bonded to the entire human race and to the entire universe is really just a hang over from narcissistic and infantile (non-ego/oceanic) feelings in the womb, where all desires were satisfied, as well as from the infant's later attempts to gain unlimited love and security from the mother and/or father once the infant realized he could not satisfy his/her needs on his own:

 

"Freud concludes that the source of religious feeling is not simply the memory of primary narcissism; rather, for him it derives from the helplessness of the infant, its need for protection by a stronger, more powerful force. Hence religions project their gods typically as father figures, who are allusions to the desire for such a protective figure."

(quotes from http://courses.washington.edu/freudlit/Civilization.Notes.html )

 

In any case, I only mention this Freudian theory as it attempts to give a non-spiritual explanation for people's longing to unite (or reunite) with the universe. In a nutshell, Freud is just saying that people take things to an extreme when it comes to desiring security, either as infants or as adults, and are continually seeking to be the only one who is the center of attention, or at least, to be a person who is unconditionally loved by either a partner, a parent, or by a God (or the universe). I don't think that this is one of Freud's wackier theories, as he is really just outlining the nature of human attachment anxiety, and relating this anxiety to the human need for an unconditionally loving parent, partner, or God. Indeed, as far as Freud was concerned, these three things kind of blended together (when it came to getting unconditional love) in the average person's mind.

 

Your earlier comments, it seemed to me, tended to suggest that the universe itself, (conversely to Freud's comment that people want to bond with God or the universe) wanted to unite, bond, and/or keep company with human beings. It sounds to me now, once the misleading metaphor is dropped, that you are not suggesting any such thing, but rather just stating that people live in a universe and like to keep each other company. No problem...Einstein laced his description of the universe with religious language all the time to achieve effect, but when asked what he really thought, he was quick to acknowledge that he did not believe in a personal God who cared about us, much as people wanted to believe he cared.

 

I am not really trying to explore whether a caring God exists or whether the universe is conscious and wants company. Rather, I find it interesting to explore the reasons that people are concerned as to whether they are alone in or with respect to the universe. Such a concern, I suspect, is also related to the concern as to whether their planet or universe is alone when it comes to sustaining intelligent life...... All in all, it seems like a whole lot ta people are concerned with just how much company and love there is to be had.

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disarray,

 

I am not sure that we don't already have unconditional love from the universe. And let me try to clarify and unwind that statement, so that it is not taken to mean that god already loves us.

 

In my recent remarks, the metaphors and empirical evidence sometimes appear to change places, but I am more trying to suggest that we already hold the key, than that we need to be provided one.

 

There is, all you say about fathers and reuniting with the universe and such, after one's identity ends with death of the body/mind/heart that makes up a conscious person.

 

But to me, the separation of a person from the universe, in the claiming of a form, of a pattern, of a life, is a victory, not a defeat. Not a thing to be corrected, but a thing to be enjoyed.

 

And such an identity can easily be viewed as the glass half empty. because we are small and fragile and temporary, but can likewise be viewed as the glass half full, because we are alive and conscious and capable not only of seeing and hearing and smelling and feeling and touching the world, but capable of moving around in it and modifying it to our advantage.

 

So the unconditional love we have, from the universe is the same love the buttercup in the field receives from the Sun, the same "going around" the asteroid has, the same belonging.

 

So yes we look to the world like we look to our father, to give us the pattern, along with the mother, to grow in the womb and become a separate life, that still is protected and nurtured by the parents and the family and the society and the generations of lives that came before and taught us how to grow food and build seaports and institutions and alliances that help us survive and pass on our pattern to our children....but return to the universe is both a sure thing, and a loss.

 

And we already have access to the place...it has already spawned us...it has already proven its love, and capability. We already fit the place. The fall of man is a metaphor. We did not lose our way by knowing the difference between good and evil. We simply just would not be man if we were not thusly separated from each other and from the universe, by our individual points of focus.

 

You think perhaps it would change our religion should we find other lifeforms that would prove to us that we were not the universe's only child. I am thinking the opposite. We would just have a bigger family.

 

Regards, TAR


When my daughter went off to VT to become a PhD she feared the loneliness and separation from family and friends. I told her, as we hugged good bye in a motel parking lot in Richmond, that, no, our neighborhood just got bigger.

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Tar

Your attempts at optimism in the face of death reminds me of Mersault's attempt to find meaning in the universe in the face of death while in prison near the end of "L'Etranger."

 

But again, I think any such Walt Whitmanesque effusions are misleading.....you can't with any consistency on the one hand take a nonreligious stance, and then state that the universe loves us unconditionally (even though it is not conscious)!

 

You say, for example, "unconditional love we have, from the universe is the same love the buttercup in the field receives from the Sun."

 

And no, the sun doesn't love the buttercup unconditionally, it is just burning off nuclear steam, so to speak. Though we at times get the feeling that the universe is a loving place in which to be...nevertheless, if we are going to personify the universe, we must adopt a balanced description of it by not forgetting that it also contains horrific things such as tornadoes and hurricanes that seem very destructive and cruel. So we can't say that the universe loves us in the same sense as it loves a buttercup...and indeed, nature has been known to shred a buttercup to shreds without mercy! In any case, I don't see the point of such poeticizing unless one is writing poetry or perhaps assuring a three-year-old that the world is not so bad after all, just because it makes horrible things occasionally such as thunder and lightning.

 

I think that is possible that in some way beyond our comprehension the universe may have some sort of consciousness, though the manner in which evolution works does not seem to suggest that...In any case, I do not claim to know that the universe as a whole is not conscious. By the way, the existence of a conscious universe would be tantamount to the existence of God....though unless the universe tampered with its own laws (e.g., via miracles) it would seem to make no difference at all whether it was conscious or not.

 

As for ETs, it may not change your attitude, but the discovery of intelligent on other planets would certainly grate against many religious doctrines and put a bee in the bonnets of many a parishioner.

 

If anything, we might describe the universe and its relation to life as a series of creative separations and reunions. In this sense, I speculate that it is likely that the universe was just one among many have separated from the backdrop field of near nothingness, and will return to this field after trillions of years of dissipation...though, I would suggest, they don't absurdly disappear without a trace...there would always be some sort of "afterglow" residue. Evolution need not always go forward (he uses the example that a dolphin could conceivably evolve back to a fish), but going backward is statistically so remote that it is not worth considering.

 

Personally, I think that nature is conservative in that nothing of value that is created is ever lost, so that given that the residual consciousness that I think remains after our separation from the universe, I would speculate that there is life after death (as the afterglow of bodily consciousness), so that, after all, no one is ever entirely alone. I don't see the universe as loving or hating in this regard (apart from the pathetic fallacy), but rather as something that just unfolds in accordance inexorably in accordance with its own inevitable laws.

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disarray,

 

 

"i think that nature is conservative in that nothing of value that is created, is ever lost,"

 

 

There is a certain personification you make here, assuming the universe could tell the difference between what is valuable and what is not. And it would be difficult for the universe to break one of its own laws, except if you gave the universe the role of lawmaker in the first place.

 

And I was not so concerned with letting the 3 year old know it was going to be alright, I was more thinking about myself, and my 90 year old dad.

 

Immortality is not something that is evidently the case. This being the case, the good part of life, for a mortal is that which occurs after conception and before brain death. Since the soul does not seem to exist without the body/brain/heart group functioning and intact, worry about life after death, or should I say consciousness when you are no longer capable of being conscious of anything in particular, is rather misleading.

 

Thus, personally, I think death will be rather like it was for me, before I was born, and similarly the stars and planets will proceed along much in the manner they were accustom to, before I knew the place."

 

So the "important" thing about the universe, is that we see it now, and the Sun warms us now, during the day, and we lose that organized energy to space, during the night.

 

Whether it is better to be hot or cold, or just right, is a human value judgement. The universe is not making the decision to warm us and freeze us, we have instead "decided" on our own to fit the place. And the place itself is neither cold and uncaring, nor warm and loving, but in the result of our consciousness, we have, in concert with our parents, and their ancestors, made it, or fit into it, in such a way as that we are alive, as individuals, and as a species.

 

The only life after death there is going to be, in my case, is everybody else that remains alive after I die.

 

The "afterglow" is only the memories in other people's minds, and the results of my works, and the effects my life will have had on the environment, and the continued existence of my pattern in the personage of my children, and the similar patterns of other humans that watched over me while I lived and that I watched over while alive.

 

I am not optimistic about the possibility of my soul continuing on its own forever. However I am optimistic about my universe continuing on, after I die, and in that, it is going to be OK.

 

Regards, TAR


But "another" universe is no concern of mine.

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Tar,

I was not suggesting that nature itself chooses what is valuable or what is not, though, as you rightly point out, it might appear that I was personifying nature. I merely observed that, via the process of evolution, nature tends to conserve living organisms that are successfully able to adapt via reproduction.

 

Admittedly, the jury is still out with regards to the question as to whether evolution is, by and large, progressive, e.g., whether it is inevitable that intelligent beings such as homo sapiens will eventually arise on an inhabitable planet via the workings of evolution, or whether it is inevitable that inhabitable planets and thus intelligent beings will inevitably arise in other universes. But, for the most part, evolution has in fact been progressive in terms of churning out more and more advanced and intelligent life forms since life began on our planet.

 

Nature does not decide what is valuable, rather, it just so happens that what evolution automatically tends to conserve is the same as that which we ourselves tend to hold as valuable, i.e., advanced and more fully conscious living creatures. Apart from a few extreme animal lovers, most people value other human beings more than they value cats and cows, and don't blink an eye when it comes to shooting the latter in order to have the sort of thick, juicy steak that keeps them alive, even though, most of them would acknowledge that we could survive just as well if not better if we did not eat meat.

 

It seems to me that you are going beyond speculation and just declaring as a fact that it is not possible that there is life after death. You say that, 'in your case' nothing will remain after you die...Are you suggesting that your case is unique and that others might live after death, or are you suggesting that, in your case, this is what you believe? Even from a scientific standpoint, it is not possible to rule out some form of life after after death, so I don't understand how anyone can categorically state that life after death is not possible. Indeed, there is no scientific evidence, for that matter, that would rule out the possibility that the universe as a whole is conscious, or rule out the possibility that there is a God like consciousness that pervades the universe. Let's face it, we just don't have enough evidence one way or the other to be claiming as a fact that a multiverse does or does not exist, or that immortality or a conscious universe is or is not possible.

 

Nevertheless, scientists do not just sit on facts and then stop thinking. They are constantly re-evaluating data in an effort to form better hypotheses and theories, and even though much of what we know about the universe, including evolution, is not based much on first-hand observation, so many things point to the functional truth of evolution that this theory is generally considered to be fact. The standard scientific approach is to try to see what the data suggests, and then try to weigh evidence that supports ones guess without summarily dismissing contrary evidence. Thus, when it comes to the existence of another universe, for example, scientists do not claim to be able to show it to you in the same way that they might show the Grand Canyon to an incredulous child. The goal of scientists is not to take anyone to another universe to show that it exists, but rather to show that the existence of such things as the development of other universes can be predicted logically from the way that relativity and perhaps (physical and organic) evolution work.

 

Indeed, the first really in-depth study of evolution could be said to have begun with Darwin's study of the beaks of finches on the Cocos islands, and, over the decades, has shown to be a theory that pervades virtually all branches of scientific endeavor, including the study of human behavior (though, admittedly, the claim that humans have Neanderthal ancestors, for example, is more demonstrable than, say, David Buss's claim that evolution causes women to be more genetically selective when it comes to choosing mates). I merely threw my two cents in by suggesting that a theory about the conservation of structured consciousness (as well as the conservation of successful physical structures such as bird beaks that can crack seeds) via, for example, reincarnation, might also be predicted from what we know about evolution. Who knows, as Carter Phipps suggests, what non-materialistic feather of knowledge we can tentatively dovetail into the peacock tail of evolution.

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disarray,

 

Another way to think of evolution though, is survival of that which fits. As in a lung would not develop if there was not oxygen to take out of the air, and metabolism that used oxygen would not develop at the bottom of the sea...where sulfur based life formed at the vents...the energy taken from the heat of the vent, rather than from the Sun as developed with life forms near the surface. The particular temperature and pressure of the environments on the Earth, the particular chemical makeup of the land and sea and air, determined what would fit. I don't think it works the other way round, that the universe is tuned for life...more that we fit the place, because it is the place where we emerged.

 

The other universes you are talking about may or may not have anything to do with us. They might not be relatable to here in terms of distance or time. They would not have to have a similar past, present and future, nor a similar shape and size, or similar motions, energies, goings and comings, causes and effects. And there is absolutely no requirement that other humans would have to emerge, even on a planet with similar temperature pressure and elemental makeup to the Earth. Any small event could change the course of any development of a species. Even on our own planet if some battle between Neanderthals and Homo Sapiens had gone differently, the subsequent genetic mix of the planet would have changed. This being the case, it makes me think that it is unlikely that another planet would have to follow our history exactly, when our planet did not HAVE TO do what it did, until it did the first things that laid the environment and conditions for the next things to happen.

 

The groundwork of carbon based life needs to be laid, by organisms fixing carbon in the first place. A whole chain is required, and any little historical happening could have made it a different place.

 

Another universe would have its own emergent entities and the intermingling of those entities would not HAVE TO follow any pattern. Especially it would not have to follow any pattern possible in our universe. Only things possible in this universe, could happen here, and it would have no bearing on what could or would or should have happened in another universe. That is the other universe's business.

 

Regards, TAR


disarray,

 

As to consciousness living on after the life that has the consciousness, the body/brain/heart group, is dead, I think it not reasonable to assume that such a thing is possible. That is, what would things look like, without an eye, or smell like, without a nose, or taste like without a tongue, or feel like without skin, or how would you know if the situation was good or uncomfortable, if you had no dopamine or adrenaline or a brain for the stuff to be released into?

 

Again, the question is similar. What good is an imaginary observer, from which you can not get any actual data. What would be the purpose of imagining another universe, when you can never experience it?

 

Our universe is quite large enough and long lived enough to provide plenty of places and events that have little to do with us. Things we are insulated from by scale, by distance by time, already. Another universe, that exists only in the imagination, is not useful. The import of such a thing is very small.

 

But back to your question of me suggesting as a fact, that there is no ghost in the machine, that has a life without the machine. It seems evident to me that the spirit of a thing can easily exist in another human's consciousness, or even be apparent in what was left behind, like a heart with initials carved into a tree. One can "feel" the presence of another human, and converse with unseen others. We do it all the time. You can imagine your Aunt Bertha, and what she sounds like and what she looks like and what she would say and what she would think about a happening and such, and it would not matter if Aunt Bertha was alive in Cleveland, or if she died last week...she would still exist in your memory, either way, and you still can converse with her in your imagination, as an unseen other.

 

So, the spirit of Aunt Bertha exists, with or without a living body/brain/heart group...but once Aunt Bertha dies, she can no longer hold you in her mind.

 

That said, I had a thought and feeling about 10 years ago, that somehow, this particular TAR body/brain/heart group has something about it, that existed before and will exist after TAR's death. I don't know what I meant by that, or what I mean by that, but it seems that I already belong to reality, in some manner that is not bound by TAR. Like the general idea you expressed earlier of "returning to the force'. I assume that such is a possible route my identity might take, some sort of melting back into the universe, with no specific borders or separate identity required...but continuing to exist, AS TAR, after TAR is dead, seems like a hope, without a mechanism.

 

Regards, TAR

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Tar

Of course, life adapts to its surrounding. If you choose to use the word "fits," you are still not deviating from standard evolutionary theory.

 

But I agree that the origin of life is not generally considered an aspect of evolution for many scientists, though many nowadays do think that it evolves (perhaps inevitably) from more basic molecular crystalizations, etc.

 

Similarly, if there are other universes, things could be quite different. However, I adhere to the school of thought that the laws of physics and perhaps therefore the way that the periodic table of elements are filled in after the initial Big Bang theory are inexorably true. Many scientists say the universe is essentially mathematical, and this confirms such a view.

 

Of course, the intelligent life that might develop on another planet in our or another universe might not look just like human beings. Indeed, even on our own planet, hominids in general and humans in particular adapt different in accordance with time and the environment,..that's why there are geno and phenotypical differences. I didn't mean to imply that "ETs" would be just like us. Indeed, it has been remarked that Hollywood's portray of ETs is usually absurdly anthropomorphic.

 

Yes, I agree that were consciousness to survive in some form after death, it would not be the exact same as that which we know now (e.g., the 5 or more senses we supposedly have). Indeed, what you described is similar to what Buddhists describe in their depiction of "consciousness" in Nirvana...a blissful state in which the earthly ego melts into the near nothingness of the universe.

 

I have several times agreed that empirical/theoretical confirmation of life on another planet in our or another universe is, as you put it, "of no use to use" to the average person on the street going about his/her business. Again, my point was rather that such knowledge (to whatever degree) tends, like the Copernican revolution or Darwinism, to affect religious dogma in general, and conversely, to expand our understanding of evolution.

 

I don't think that 'memories' per se have any particular significance to a discussion of an afterlife...it is a commonplace to say that we 'live' on in the memories of others through photographs, through what we accomplish, through art, through their recollection of good times with us, etc. On the other hand, those fleeting moments when a person's consciousness 'shifts gears' and one feels intellectually, emotionally, or sensually that one is part of ones surroundings or nature as a whole, I suggest, are more significant.

 

Just whether we can reasonably claim that there is or may be life on other planets or whether Aunt Bertha can remember us after birth depends on the level of empirical and theoretically consistent information one is expected to give to support such a claim, and how skeptical our audience wants to be. According to Hume, we have no (logical) right to claim as an indisputable fact that Aunt Bertha can remember us after death or not, anymore than we can claim as fact that the sun will still be 'burning away' tomorrow. I would agree, though, that unified, standard scientific models of the way nature works (e.g., synapses, neural networks, etc.) do not point in the direction that specific memories survive death.

 

At the end of the day, responses to questions such as whether we and/or the universe is alone depend on just how the questioner chooses to narrow down the question...much like one is taught in high school to narrow down ones general essay topic or in college to narrow down ones research topic. Similarly, ones response depends upon just how speculative one is allowed to be, and how much one is allowed to bring such things as personal belief and intuition into the discussion, as well as scientific evidence and conjecture.

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disarray,

 

Agreed. But in addition, and to me a very important consideration when attempting to talk about the universe, is how you are talking about it, and from what perspective. That is, are you imagining that there is a way to consider the whole thing at once, that is a different way than that that we have when we look out into it. That is, the way the universe seems to work, is that close things report their activity almost immediately to the surroundings, whereas far away stuff takes a long time to make itself known.

 

This is a particularly important point to me, because it speaks to the role of point of view, in noticing the universe in the first place. If for instance one melts back into the near nothingness, into the no division "true" nature of the universe, then one loses the ability to say anything in particular about the thing, in Kant's terms.

 

Here I find it confusing to determine what one is talking about, when someone asks or tells what the universe is doing now. Confusing, because that is something that can not be determined by any one observer, and would need to be determined by a survey of all observers, which or who cannot communicate instantly with each other, but would take in some cases, a time longer than forever, given the expansion of the universe and the speed of light. Here is where I find concern about another universe particularly unnecessary since the far reaches of this one, are already outside our experience.

 

Regards, TAR

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Tar

Yes, the Laplacian dream was that science could, in theory if not in practice, predict everything that was going to happen in the universe if one had enough information because everything was determined by cause and effect.

 

Einstein, Bohr, and Heisenberg in particular have shown that this Newtonian view of the universe is simplistic, and ultimately gives us a defective impression as to what the universe is like, as well as what we can know about it. It sounds to me that you are just saying the same thing in your own way...we have, of course, a very illusory sense that we are seeing and understanding the universe "as it is" when we wander out onto the back porch on a warm summer's night and gaze at a patchwork of twinkling lights.

 

So, yes, we are limited, by definition, in our understanidng of things because we are always perceiving them from some Kantian-like perspective. Nevertheless, Einstein had an inkling that it might be possible to be conscious of things from several different perspectives, and indeed the cubists (not to mention the likes of Escher) also took a shot at understanding what such multi-perspectivism might be like. And yes, perhaps without a perspective, we don't have the same "ego" or sense of self that we would usually have.

 

I have an open mind about the possibility that both "space" and consciousness are more malleable than we can imagine. When it comes to what Reality is "really, really" like, it seems our common sense and intuition repeatedly fail us. So, just because we can't "imagine" what it is like to experience things from more than one perspective at once does not mean it is not possible. Indeed, our eyes, for example, only focus on and thus see a small area in the center of our vision (focal point) and our brain fills in the rest so that we have a coherent vision of our surroundings....I think it very likely that it is possible for consciousness to somehow integrate multiple viewpoints into one coherent vision.

 

Indeed, with the discovery of such things as nonlocal entanglement, there is scientific talk that what we see is just a hologram of what reality is really like, since every particle seems to be in instant communication with each other, even, perhaps, if galaxies away from each other. Indeed, our mental filters (mundane space and time as well as 'personal perspectives') are illusory and, say the Buddhists, fall away when our personal egos drop away like a butterfly's chrysalis as we enter into a state of expanded, perhaps universal, consciousness (aka Nirvana/Enlightenment).

 

For what it's worth, it is relevant that those who report having "consciousness expanding" experiences say that they feel less bodily and mentally separate from their surroundings, as if blending in with their environment like, one might say, Blake's tiger in the night.

 

In any case, I think that it is possible to discuss such things without being religious, given that one defines the term "religion" as a belief in a transcendent power/being that is personally conscious and/or aware of our existence, and that created the universe. If one can entertain the idea, from a scientific standpoint that the (or a) universe can come into existence "on its own", and that life can come into existence on its own, then I see no reason to not discuss the possibility that consciousness is something that arises further arises (and that may persist in a modified form after bodily death) without the outside help of some (usually anthropomorphic) personal deity.

 

Again, attempts to explain the birth of a universe, or the first cell, or of consciousness without resorting to religion does not deny that it is possible that a deity created these things....it merely means that we are trying to explain these things without assuming that a deity created all these things in order to see what we find.

 

So what that our universe is some 14 or 15 billion years old... If it happened once, it can happen again. I would suggest that we still have a "young" universe, seeing as there seems no end in sight, and that it will take thousands of trillions of years for all the particles to disintegrate. My own take (and I am not alone) is that nature, however varied, always begins with the same basic building blocks (e.g., the Higgs Boson, gravity, the hydrogen atom, carbon molecules), so that such things as universes, habitable planets, and intelligent beings repeatedly and inevitably come into being to form an ever expanding archipelago...no man or universe is an island.

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disarray,

 

My long standing own take, and I might be alone, is that our universe is alone, but was something else prior the big bang. That is we were something else other than this universe that had emerged from perhaps the end of the universe that preceeded that one. This gives a slightly different lean, than your take, in that it is not that it can all happen again, but that this is a progressive step in a long series of universes, each one requiring the residue from the earlier one to provide the raw material from which the next is built. In my take, this is happening for the first time, as the previous universe did not start with what it finished with.

 

Regards, TAR

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Tar

Here is a web page that more specifically addresses your previous question as to how evolution, or some version of it, could explain how life originated, given that it seems that something must already be alive in the first place in order to adapt:


"The formula, based on established physics, indicates that when a group of atoms is driven by an external source of energy (like the sun or chemical fuel) and surrounded by a heat bath (like the ocean or atmosphere), it will often gradually restructure itself in order to dissipate increasingly more energy. This could mean that under certain conditions, matter inexorably acquires the key physical attribute associated with life."

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/a-new-physics-theory-of-life/

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

As for your last post, yes, it does seem quite likely that this universe might be put together from a previous universe, much like Mabel reheats leftovers to put on the table. Certainly this would be a good way to look at things if one is contending that reincarnation is not incompatible with a scientific outlook. Of course, a scientific view of reincarnation would suggest that one moves up the ladder with each successive incarnation: a chimpanzee mind (consciousness) might move up the ladder to become the consciousness of an early hominid such as CroMagnon in the next life, but not vice versa. In this scheme of things, if a universe comes to an end at some point, that chimpanzee's consciousness might need to hang around a while until the next universe is formed and new habitable planets are formed. Highly speculative, of course, but so is any religious or spiritual or scientific attempt to discuss non-corporeal existence.

 

But just in terms of physical terms, it will take a lot of residue collecting to scrape together and compress enough energy to start a new universe, as the leftovers will be strewn all over the place:

 

"There will come a time, safely off the scale for workaday concern, when not only the sun will die, but the lights of all stars will also vanish. Left in the enveloping twilight will be stillborn stars like brown dwarfs, stellar ghosts like white dwarfs and neutron stars and those powerful gravitational sinks known as black holes.

In time even these will decay and disappear. All that will remain in this bleak, darkened future will be an increasingly diffuse sea of electrons, positrons, neutrinos and radiation....

The decomposition of protons, basic particles of ordinary matter, will destroy what remains of the stellar relics, thus ringing down the curtain on the degenerate era in 10 trillion trillion trillion years. The third period, the black hole era, would be an even longer span of time, during which even these objects with powerful gravitational forces would slowly radiate away their mass and disappear. This projected final dark era is expected to begin 10,000 trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion years from now."

http://articles.chicagotribune.com/1997-01-16/news/9701160210_1_trillion-astrophysicist-at-princeton-university-black-holes

 

So, in the life of a universe, there is a lot of time when it obviously can't support life. And from a purely physical point of view, it will take a lot of scraping around for residual energy (presuming there is any) in order to collect enough to throw together another meal from the leftovers.

 

But yes, whether we are talking about the attributes of other universes, or the attributes of one (our own) as it continues to give birth to itself, I think, as I mentioned before, that there can only be so much flexibility and variation from one universe to the next, given that the laws of physics are unalterable.

 

Nietzsche prophesied the eternal recurrence of reality, so that, as I understand it, he thought that whatever happened now, will happen exactly again in some great span of time: his beloved Cosima (believing in a literal interpretation of Creation) will scoff over and over ad infinitum and ad nauseum at his romantic inklings as well as what she considered to be his bizarre mysticism .

 

I guess that is possible that things would be exactly the same, but given the way that nature works, there is always an element of randomness, be it throwing out a number of stars in order to get some with habitable planets or churning out a litter of puppies in the hope that the "fitter" ones will survive and pass along their genes:

 

Metaphorically speaking of course, Mother Nature does not sit down and construct a universe complete with flawless hummingbirds and bright-eyed monkeys in a single 24-hour day. Rather, she shoots out millions of dice, leaving a lot of crap on the table before she gets lucky. Whether she ever rests up in order to play another day is anyone's guess.

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disarray,

 

Well, there does seem to be some organizing principles in the universe. What with gravity and suns gathering together hydrogen and dust and turning them into furnaces that spew ordered energy and the theorized black holes that do more gathering than dissipating, and the great attractor that local walls of galaxies seem to be circling, and the like. Even the theories of galaxies widening the gap between themselves over time, allow for certain close ones to be "gravitationally bound".

 

But most important to me, is the thought that every atom seems to want to get rid of its energy and relax its electrons to the lowest possible energy level...except the rest of the atoms in the universe are attempting the same feat, and there seems to always be a photon coming in, from somewhere or another.

 

So closed systems and open systems might work a little differently. Equilibrium might be the end result, but only if the system is left "alone".

 

I am thinking that any system encountered within the universe is not closed off from the rest of universe and the rest of the universe shines on each other part of it, a photon at a time.

 

Regards, TAR


so maybe the universe is not scheduled to run down, as it can not ever fall to complete rest, because the rest of the place keeps each portion, alive


and any thing that is supposed to happen in a trillion trillion trillion years is completely meaningless to us

 

not only does it not matter to us, but there is no way to check if the prediction is true

 

some unaccounted for principle is likely to present itself in that time, and the prediction can not possibly account for an entity that has not yet emerged

 

plus the entirety of the universe that we now sense with our radio telescopes is old news, and the current universe is doing stuff we have no access to (except locally)


For instance, if all the atoms in the universe would time out and cease to operate when their nuclei reach the age of 13.8 billion years, and no atom in the universe would send out a photon, ever again, this location in space would continue to "see" stars shining for just about always. First, after about 8 minutes there would be no more photons from the Sun. Then after a few years the closest stars would blink out, then after 100,000 years there would be no light from milkyway stars, but the surrounding galaxies would still shine, even though they stopped shining the same moment our Sun did. Even trillions of years later there would be some sparse photons coming in to this spot at super long wavelengths. There is no place for this spot to go, It will never not be subject to an incoming photon.

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disarray,

 

You can roll the dice a trillion times and you will always get a number between 2 and 12 inclusive

You will never get a queen of hearts. For that, you need to be drawing from a deck of cards.

 

Regards, TAR


B John Jones,

 

I am not interested in you talking about something I could not see for myself. If we are to talk about something, it should be something we both already have access to.

 

Regards, TAR


disarray,

 

 

I don't think you can say that physical laws are the same everywhere, when you are talking about other universes. They could have different physical laws than this one. And this one had a period of inflation, followed by a period of expansion and there was a time where the place was not transparent to photons and such. So even the physical laws of this place change over time, and change depending on whether you are in a void or a blackhole and so on.

 

Regards, TAR

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Tar

 

“You will never get a queen of hearts. For that, you need to be drawing from a deck of cards.”

I have no idea what your point is here. I was using the dice metaphor myself to point out the trial and error way that evolution, as well as the existence of life on other planets, occurs, and also with reference to Einstein’s apparently overturned claim that pure randomness is not an integral part of the way the universe works, because “God does not play dice”.

………………………

I don’t mean to be contrary for the heck of it, but I am not going to agree when I don’t:

 

I am guessing, unless you have completely changed your tune, that you don’t think that consciousness can survive death, much less be passed along from one universe to the next. So I don’t know why you bother having a pet theory about our universe coming from a previous universe at all, particularly as you consistently state that such things are so remote and lacking in empirical evidence as to not be worth thinking about.

 

Apart from a brief attempt to make scientific sense of reincarnation, I have merely described the standard, mainstream scientific theories about the origin of life (it’s having a biochemical explanation that somehow dovetails into the theory of evolution) as well as the fate of the universe (gradual entropy and dissipation of energy). Yet, though you hold on to your own unique theory the fate of the universe and the existence of a previous one, you dismiss the standard view of the way in which the universe will fizzle out on the basis that we don’t have enough information, and can't possibly know about distant future events, cause that's a long time away and things could change and it doesn't really matter anyway.

 

I am reminded of Creationists who have similarly told me that scientists can’t explain the origin of life, so there must be a divine explanation…or that scientists say the Big Bang happened billions of years, and since none of us were alive then, it is silly to try to say what happened way back then. Never mind that we can use such techniques as studying cosmic microwave background to scientifically estimate when the Big Bang took place, or study particle decay to estimate how long it will be before cosmic particles disintegrate, or extrapolate from what we can see through telescopes about what the unviewable universe is like.

 

Your claim that one universe could come from another one and have completely different laws is dismissed in a Great Discoveries Channels article written by a physicist who warns laypersons about mixing philosophical speculation and science, “If you're going to claim that general relativity [for example] stops working beyond some sort of interstate-of-existence line, the burden of proof is on you to show that's the case - and strawman arguments on the nature of experimentation aren't going to cut it. You can say that the plank constant is a variable over time and space, but when we want to build an bridge or a fusion reactor we're going to stick with our silly, provincial, non-new-book-publishing "actual physics."

http://www.dailygalaxy.com/my_weblog/2010/01/are-the-laws-of-physics-unique-to-our-universe-a-leading-expert-says-yes.html

 

That the laws of physics might be different in another universe or that they significantly change in various places of our own is often dismissed as zany New-Ageism, e.g., http://gizmodo.com/5635559/zany-scientists-claim-the-laws-of-physics-change-throughout-the-universe

 

Whether, universes other than our own might have different laws is conjectural, though I see no evidence put forth to suggest that they would be, given the ineluctable nature of our own, and given that their possible existence is predicted by virtue of extrapolation from the laws of our own universe, not just idle philosophical speculation.

 

I think it is getting too far adrift to argue about your off-the-cuff rejection of mainstream scientific theories, particularly when this just seems to happen when they do not seem compatible with your own.

 

To me, the most relevant issue to this thread so far is whether it is likely that there is life on other planets, which, again, is relevant, not because it offers us relief from our ‘alone-ness’ but rather because it is one more feather in the hat of evolutionary theory.

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disarray,

 

the queen of heart thing was meant to point out that the universe works with what it has, and takes the next step based upon where it is standing.

 

Not so random and chance filled, if it is just the next step in a thusly sensible progression.

 

The previous universe thing I speculate about is not unlike a new universe forming on the other side of a black hole. And it was others that speculated that other universes could have math and different constants, not me. I am OK with counting any universe that is spawned from a black hole in this universe, a child of this universe and not a separate thing.

 

Regards, TAR

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Tar

My point was that, if not pure randomness (though that is essentially what Quantum theory proposes), then we can see that, as I mentioned before, nature tends to make an abundance of organisms in order to produce a few that adapt unusually well, or a plethora of desolate burning stars in order produce a planet that has suitable conditions for sustaining life. In a sense, it seems that trial and error is an essential aspect of the way nature works. Epigenetics, among other things, suggests that nature learns from its mistakes, while, at the same time, conserving those things that have been successful.

 

And yes, I don't think it makes any difference whether additional universes arise out of our own, as some scientists claim, or out of some multiverse backdrop, as others claim.

 

But no, as far as I know, there is no reason to think that the laws of relativity, quantum effects, etc. do not hold everywhere, despite apparent anomalies such as the inflation rate of the early universe. I think that the fact that laws hold everywhere is significant in that it appears that nature is essentially consistent in the way that it churns things out, and therefore, other universes or not, I subscribe to the school of thought that the nature has and always will create (intelligent) life forms over and over again, ad infinitum.

I don't really have anything more to say on this topic.

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