Re: this very moment

From: Brent Meeker <>
Date: Sat, 13 May 2000 11:42:49 -0700

On 13-May-00, Alastair Malcolm wrote:

>> In any case our reason for supposing the world to be law like is already
>> because we believe in induction; not the other way around. Hence in using
> what
>> we know of science and life, which is all based on induction, in step 4 we
> already introduce circularity into the argument. But maybe not vicious
> circularity
>> - that's what makes it interesting.
> I am afraid I fail to see any relevant circularity here, vicious or
> otherwise. Note that the particular argument in my post takes the AUH
> (plenitude) as a premise, so there cannot be circularity at that point.
> Perhaps you might like to spell out exactly where you think the circularity
> arises, and then I could comment further.
The circularity I referred to arises from my presumption that you intended to
explain the reliability of induction from the plentitude; and at the same time to use the fact that we observe induction to be reliable as supporting the existence of the
plentitude. As I said, I'm not sure it's vicious circularity (in which you
assumed that which was to be proved); rather it is of the form A implies B, and
B, therefore (probably) A. I would like to see some discussion of what else
implies B - and also some definition of what B is. It seems that most of the
discussion on this forum consists of assuming a plentitude/multi-verse/TOE,
assuming it to conform to some general ideas
simplicity/generality/computatbility and then showing that this explains or
makes probable some apparent features of the world
fine-tuned-constants/induction/collapse-of-the-wave-function. This is
interesting but I would like to see some consideration of alternative
explanations of these features. Why is the plentitude/multi-verse or whatever
preferred? Otherwise the discussion tends to resemble theology - "We have seen
God and He explains everything."

Brent Meeker
Received on Sat May 13 2000 - 12:48:33 PDT

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