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Thread: The Universe

  1. #21
    darkened dreams labyrinthine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nocturne View Post
    I don't care to argue the meaning of words. Of course, if you redefine 'universe,' then it can be used in the plural and such concepts as a metauniverse may be consistent; but then if you redefine 'pig,' then I might consistently talk of a jet powered supersonic pig.

    The 'universe' is defined as totality of everything, and you can't have an everything + 1.
    When the word universe means everything, then the content of its definition evolves as we learn more about everything. At one point the 'universe' was a flat earth that the sun circled. Now that we have an expanded concept of everything, we can either call our observable everything a meta-universe, or change the definition of the old 'universe' to include our new information. It doesn't seem especially relevant to me which approach is taken in terminology, but the process of discovery and expanding our concept of everything is relevant to asking questions about our current concept of the universe. We are in the middle of a process of understanding this everything, so the terminology applied to it must be expandable, right?

    I am so hoping that made sense. *Whoosh*
    Step into my metaphysical room of mirrors.
    Fear of reality creates myopic morality
    So I guess it means there is trouble until the robins come
    (from Blue Velvet)

    I want to be just like my mother, even if she is bat-shit crazy.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by toonia View Post
    I am so hoping that made sense. *Whoosh*
    You're making irrelevant distinctions.

    Of course, we may discover that the universe is much bigger than we had previously believed, or even imagined. The cosmology of ptolemy has been discarded, and in its place a far larger universe was conceived, and modern physics suggests that the universe is even bigger still, with alternate realities and such. However, the universe is defined as the totality of everything, so if we discover more, we simply discover that there is more to the universe than previously believed.

    Even if we adopted a terminology where there can be multiple universes within a metaverse, explaining the origin of our universe would not settle these cosmological questions, since we would simply ask the same of the postulated metauniverse. Indeed, that is the problem with the questions, since they always implicitly postulate a metasomething.

    What caused the universe to exist?
    Where did the universe come from?
    Who created the universe?
    Why was the universe created?
    What was there before the universe?
    What is outside the universe?

    All these questions make the same error.
    A criticism that can be brought against everything ought not to be brought against anything.

  3. #23
    darkened dreams labyrinthine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by toonia View Post
    It doesn't seem especially relevant to me which approach is taken in terminology...
    Quote Originally Posted by nocturne View Post
    You're making irrelevant distinctions.
    The point of my post was that the distinction is irrelevant.

    Quote Originally Posted by nocturne View Post
    Of course, we may discover that the universe is much bigger than we had previously believed, or even imagined. The cosmology of ptolemy has been discarded, and in its place a far larger universe was conceived, and modern physics suggests that the universe is even bigger still, with alternate realities and such. However, the universe is defined as the totality of everything, so if we discover more, we simply discover that there is more to the universe than previously believed.

    Even if we adopted a terminology where there can be multiple universes within a metaverse, explaining the origin of our universe would not settle these cosmological questions, since we would simply ask the same of the postulated metauniverse. Indeed, that is the problem with the questions, since they always implicitly postulate a metasomething.

    What caused the universe to exist?
    Where did the universe come from?
    Who created the universe?
    Why was the universe created?
    What was there before the universe?
    What is outside the universe?

    All these questions make the same error.
    I do see your point and agree with it. My point is that those questions may be applicable to our current concept of the universe, our 3-D space-time continuum, if it is a component of something larger. People discussing this issue could argue from that assumption. It's just meant for clarification. I understand your point is that these questions are meaningless when applied to 'everything', and the best we can have at any moment is our current concept of that everything?

    Quote Originally Posted by nocturne View Post
    The 'universe' is defined as totality of everything, and you can't have an everything + 1.
    Now this may be a worthless question, but I have to ask. Could everything +1 be a way of defining infinity? Or maybe it defines the process of discovering infinity? Or maybe it just defines insanity?
    Step into my metaphysical room of mirrors.
    Fear of reality creates myopic morality
    So I guess it means there is trouble until the robins come
    (from Blue Velvet)

    I want to be just like my mother, even if she is bat-shit crazy.

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by toonia View Post
    The point of my post was that the distinction is irrelevant.
    I apologise.
    A criticism that can be brought against everything ought not to be brought against anything.

  5. #25
    Senior Member hereandnow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sundowning View Post
    I read toonia's post as asking the very same question.
    And yet it was asked again.
    INTP 5W6

  6. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by hereandnow View Post
    And yet it was asked again.
    I'm interested in clarity, so fair enough.

  7. #27
    darkened dreams labyrinthine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nocturne View Post
    I apologise.
    Quite alright. I was getting tangled up in everything and seems I caught you in my web momentarily.
    Step into my metaphysical room of mirrors.
    Fear of reality creates myopic morality
    So I guess it means there is trouble until the robins come
    (from Blue Velvet)

    I want to be just like my mother, even if she is bat-shit crazy.

  8. #28
    Member ferunandesu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nocturne View Post
    What is the cause of the universe?
    Assumption.

    Quote Originally Posted by nocturne View Post
    What is the meaning of the universe?
    Assumption.

    Quote Originally Posted by nocturne View Post
    What is beyond the universe?
    Assumption.

    -----------

    The only irrefutable statement: "Assumption is necessary."

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by ferunandesu View Post
    Assumption...

    Assumption...

    Assumption.
    Master of the obvious indeed.

    The only irrefutable statement: "Assumption is necessary."
    First, you are confusing statements with propositions: statements can differ syntactically, but be equivalent semantically. In other words, the same proposition can be expressed by many different statements. For example:

    P or Q = ~(~P & ~Q)

    Here, the disjuction "or" is nonexclusive, perhaps better read as "or/and." The statement "P or Q" is false, if and only if, both "P" and "Q" are false. Now, it follows, that is "P or Q" is true, then "~P & ~Q" is is false, therefore "~(~P & ~Q)." In other words, these two formulas are equivalent, in that they both express the same proposition. In natural language:

    It is raining outside or cloudy outside
    =
    It is not the case that is not raining outside and not cloudy outside

    These different statements, express the same proposition. In fact, the syntactical rules of natural language allow for a far greater freedom sentence formation, and that's ignoring the thousand of languages we have to choose from. The point is that "Assumption is necessary" cannot be the only statement which is irrefutable, since the same proposition can be expressed by the statement, "it is not case that it is not the case that an assumption is necessary." Indeed, I might even say "it is necessary to have assumptions," or whatever. In any case, we are still dealing with different statements.

    You might claim that I am nitpicking here, and that you really meant that "Assumption is necessary" to be the only proposition that is irrefutable. However, if so then you have generated a paradox.

    (A) The only irrefutable proposition: "Assumption is necessary"
    (B) A is refutable

    Iff "Assumption is necessary" is the only irrefutable proposition, then the proposition "The only irrefutable proposition: "Assumption is necessary"" is refutable. Therefore, B follows from A.

    Now, if B is false then A is irrefutable, though if A is irrefutable then "Assumption is necessary" not the only irrefutable proposition and A is false. But if A is false then B is true. Therefore, B is always true and irrefutable.

    That is bad enough, but now if B is always true, then A is always refutable, now it follows that if A is refutable then so is "Assumption is necessary." Thus "Assumption is necessary" is not irrefutable!!!

    There are many semantic paradoxes, tautologies and theorems that are irrefutable. That is, true under all interpretations. In fact, all logically valid arguments employ one connective which is true under all interpretations. For example:

    (P then Q) then Q
    T...T....T....T....T
    T...F....F....T.....F
    F...T....T....T....T
    F...T....F....T.....F

    This truth table makes the point well. Whatever forumula we end up with on the conclusion side of an argument, we can simply add to the original set of premises as the consequent of a conditional. Pay attention to the second "then" in the sequence, which is True under all interpretations of the argument. It doesn't matter what combination of truth and falsity we apply to "P" and "Q," that second "then" is always true and irrefutable.

    There are infinite irrefutable propositions. However, irrefutability does not necessarily mean true, it simply means that we cannot show it to be false.
    A criticism that can be brought against everything ought not to be brought against anything.

  10. #30
    Member ferunandesu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nocturne View Post
    However, if so then you have generated a paradox.

    (A) The only irrefutable proposition: "Assumption is necessary"
    (B) A is refutable

    Iff "Assumption is necessary" is the only irrefutable proposition, then the proposition "The only irrefutable proposition: "Assumption is necessary"" is refutable. Therefore, B follows from A.
    NO.

    Given nothing, and then given "Assumption is necessary" - in effect, allowing for any assumption to be made, we can assume "Assumption is not necessary". This itself is an assumption and most will go ahead and assume that it's false. HOWEVER, false? What? What is false? Truth and falsehood have not been introduced yet, and the concept of both relies on, you guessed it - an assumption. Before you can talk or even think about reality, knowledge, God, the Flying Spaghetti Monster, truth, and falsehood - an assumption must be made. Therefore, assumption is necessary, and attempting to refute this would lead to further assumptions.

    Anyways, if you decide to assume A and ~A and then the laws of logic, then you've assumed a set of premises that could lead to any conclusion. It's simply a bad thing to do in RL, but it still has no effect on the correctness of A (Assumption is necessary) even in the presence of ~A. Point being: Make good assumptions. Other point being: Logic doesn't matter in this case- it can't be applied to it's most basic foundation.

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