Re: on formally describable universes and measures

From: Stephen Paul King <>
Date: Mon, 05 Mar 2001 18:18:26 -0500

Dear George,


George Levy wrote:

> Stephen Paul King wrote:

> [GL]
> > > Logic just like phycical laws is not abolute. It only exists in the mind of
> > > the beholder. So a transition is logical only if it makes sense for the
> > > consciousness which experiences it. And a consciousness experiences such a
> > > transition only if it makes or can make sense of it.
> [SPK]
> > Would it be possible to elaborate on this? Could it be that for a transition
> > to "make sense for the consciousness that experiences it" such a transition must
> > not contradict any other previous experience?
> >
> [GL]
> There is no "previous" in the sense of previous time, only in terms of logical
> antecedent.


        Umm, let me break this down into chucks and try to see if we are understanding
each other. My notion of a "previous time" was couched within a notion that is similar
to J. A. Wheeler's notion of a "Surprise 20 Questions Game" and I did not state so
explicitly. I am playing with the idea that time is a "first person" attribute and thus
is not to be considered as "objective" nor absolute (as in the Newtonian sense). I think
that our ideas are similar but we may have semantic differences here. ;-)

> [GL]

> In addition, the conscious points are multiply connected and the
> connections are a function of the points themselves. In other words each point could
> have several priors and several successors.


    I would agree, but I would argue that we could cause some confusion if we are not
careful. We have to distinguish the a priori possible (or probable) experiences from
the a posteriori experiences themselves. I am exploring the idea that communication
between observers plays an important role in restricting and/or distinguishing the two.
I hope that you understand this difference between a priori and a posteriori that I am
writing about. ;-)

> [GL]

> The structure is "web-like."


    Yes, I agree. I have been exploring this idea with several people for some time
using the notions of Leibniz and Spinoza. Let me recap. Are you saying that conscious
points (I can them them "monads" ala Leibniz) has a "web-like structure?"

> [GL]

> (The universe does not just splits with each Quantum event, it can also merge) I think
> it
> best to view each points as a set of states independent of past information (i.e.,
> first order Markov chain). To make sense, a transition needs only satisfy the
> current states. The "past" states are irrelevant or ambiguous.


    Umm, here I have a problem! You say that the universe splits and merges; how do you
define such a Universe? Is it the Totality of existence or is it the union of all
possible first person perceptions? If it is the former then there are powerful arguments
that such a Universe is completely static and timeless, which causes the notion of
splitting and merging to fall apart because it can have nothing external to it to act as
a clock to parametrize its splitting and merging. If it is the latter then we still have
a problem since the the notion of a "current state" is ambiguous at best.
    We could think of the splitting and merging as local topological properties of a
multiply connected manifold and I think that such a thought would be in line with the
idea of first order Markov chains, but I am not sure now you are thinking about how the
points are related (via transitions). It is obvious that "past states" refer to
information that is encoded within the current state and that is what I meant by my
statement. I think that we agree that the "past" is not something that is "out there"
outside of the experience of the present moment. ;-)

> > > > But I certainly wouldn't claim that for my own train of thoughts. Also
> > > > I don't see how transition and simultaneity can be defined until time
> > > > is defined.
> > >
> > > Time and space are not defined yet. The only thing that is defined so far is
> > > a logic and an associated consciousness. So a transition is just an
> > > unidirectional logical arrow from this conscious point to another conscious
> > > point. Time is an experience emerging from the unidirectionality of these
> > > arrows.
> [SPK]
> > Some have argued that the time, in the sense that it can be considered as a
> > transition of the physical state of a system, is the dual of the logic. See:
> > Additionally, I think that we should
> > distinguish the different aspects of time. There is the notion of time as a
> > measure of change, time as an order of succession and time and time as a
> > directed transition.
> >
> [GL]
> Interesting.


    I am interested in your thoughts of Pratt et al's ideas. ;-)

> [SPK]
> > If you are considering the aspect of time that is an order of succession,
> > then I would agree, but I believe that Brett (?) was considering the directed
> > transition aspect. By the way, space is definable as the order of co-existence
> > (Leibniz).
> >
> > >Let's define third person perspective as
> > > one shared by observers occupying the same logical/physical laws frame of
> > > reference as well as having the same set of contingencies on their
> > > existence. They will experience the world in the same way and therefore have
> > > the illusion that their perception of the world is absolute when in fact it
> > > isn't.
> >
> > I agree with this definition of the third person perspective! Note that if
> > each observer has their own "time" and "space" which is their first person
> > perspective, then the third person perspective is the intersection of many first
> > person perspectives.
> >
> Right!
> > ...each OM is connected to other OMs
> > > by unidirectional logical arrows formulated according to a logic of which is
> > > a characteristics of the OM themselves. Thus each OM defines its own
> > > allowed set of transitions.Time is an emergent experience resulting from
> > > these arrows. Conscious flow is a static phenomenon, EXPERIENCED BY EACH
> [SPK]
> > I think that we need to find a way of defining the act of experiencing
> > itself! Several philosophers have argued to that experience involves a
> > correlation or synchronization of sorts between "external" and "internal"
> > attributes. Your statements would imply, then, that a "point" has some kind of
> > "internal" structure...
> [GL]
> Yes. This is the next step which is anthropically driven. The structure is necessary
> because of the attributes of consciousness.


    Ok, would we agree that the anthropic principle (weak?) is true in the sense that
any observer will have first person perspectives (experiences) that have a probability
of 1 if and only if such are consistent with its existence. Also, if you are going to
say that consciousness is a static phenomenon then could you explain how the appearance
of change comes about? Have you by chance read Julian Barbour's book The End of Time?

> George

Kindest regards,

Received on Mon Mar 05 2001 - 16:24:53 PST

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