Re: ODP: Free will/consciousness/ineffability

From: Marchal <>
Date: Wed Oct 10 03:34:26 2001

Zbigniew Motyka wrote:

>Marchal wrote:[[] ->Re: Free
>will/consciousness/ineffability, 01-10-01(see below)]:
>>I don't believe in matter (personal opinion)
>>Comp is incompatible (in some sense) with existing matter (my thesis).
>>I agree and that is why I believe that IF we are machine THEN we are
>>immaterial machine. We have never leave Plato heaven if you want.
>>Now I don't believe "copy of material universe" exists in Platonia.
>>Appearance of physical universes emerges on the computational histories.
>>To explain appearnance of lawfulness we need to take into account
>>*ALL* computational histories.
>>(...) If there is a physical universe then comp is false.
>>Equivalently if comp is true there is no physical universe. <<
>Many people seem to believe in Popper?s Third World - Platonia more then
>in their own personal experience. People believe in many other things as
>well. It doesn?t mean that every ?designum? (designated object) of their
>belief (signum) does really exist somewhere else then in Platonia, where
>any every possible idea would exist. I used conditional to underline that
>in my opinion there is no idea in Third World which was not created first
>in the brain of some conscious being. In such an understanding, Platonia
>would be nothing more than the global memory existing in whole the world.
>In my opinion it is sublimated form of global (social) consciousness
>(culture) and as such is the property of more complicated level of matter
>than single (human) being.

But what is matter? Even in the physicist books I see only relation
between numbers. "My" Platonia is numberland, including the many dreams,
obeying to the laws of dreams (computer/information science), I have no
serious evidence that substancial (aristotelian) matter exists in any
obvious sense. I don't postulate it.

>And as consciousness for humans is the property
>of material brain,

In which sense? I mean with or without comp? Few people doubt the
brain obeys computational laws at some level (like Schroedinger equation).
Even Hameroff accept it implicitely by postulating the brain is a
(universal) quantum machine. Only Penrose seems aware (for incorrect
reason unfortunately) that the existence of substancial matter
(not intelligence) is incompatible with comp, so that a materialist
toe need a non computaionalist theory of mind. (Of course I got
the equivalent contraposition: a computationalist toe need an
immaterialist theory of "matter").

> ... the culture is the property of society.

OK. I mean that comparison has some smell of truth ...

>Such a point
>of view is commonly identified with Marxism and too often declined only
>due to that negative connotation - what a pity. In my opinion - as a
>physicist - materialism is much closer to physical description of the
>world then any form of idealism.

That is a quite respectable opinion. All what I say is that such
opinion is incompatible with comp (and weak form of Ockham).
I proved that comp gives us no other choice, for solving the mind body
problem, than deriving the "physical" laws from a set of self-referential
truth. More generally from logic + arithmetic (I indeed translate a
argument (the dovetailer universal argument UDA) in arithmetic
by using the Godel trick (perfectionned by Lob, Solovay, Boolos, Visser,
Goldblatt). BTW I use also the formidable work of Grzegorczyk, a great
Polish logician. The arithmetical version of the "first person" is given
by his modal logical system S4Grz (Grz for Grzegorczyk).
You know Poland has been one of the most productive country in logic!

>And physical description is the best
>description humans worked out as the scientific method of
>cognition, so far.

I am quite amazed by physics and physicians. Still I am used to believe
that the mind/body problems is physics' Achile's Heel. It is the place
where aventurous physicist will meet aventurous "psychologist" or

>There is no reason (even from the Okham?s point of view) to believe in
>Platonia solely and neglect material world.

Material world appear more solid when we will understand that
its stable laws emerge from machines forever dreaming in Numberland.

>Everything you can state from
>such point of view, may be easily translated in terms of properties of

You talk like if you have a proof of the existence of matter. Like if it
obvious subtancia are consistent. But you know substancia only appears
in Aristote mind when he misunderstood Plato doctrine on intelligible
(My opinion!). Despite the formidable success of physics, the main
problems are not solved: neither qualitative appearance, nor (the new
problem which appears through the comp hypothesis), the problem of the
qualitative *appearance* of matter and quantities.

You talk like if matter has been defined, or if we know what it is.
I don't think we know that. From material point to probability waves
and superstring in complex space, it seems matter is elusive, even
with physicist standart.

> Even if they are inexpressible on the present level of knowledge
>it doesn?t mean that there will be no such an explanation in (relatively
>nearby) future.

Just the time you learn french and read my Phd Thesis :-)
Other links in english are in my URL. In the everything list we discuss
similar ideas. In particular a version of the UDA in that
list can be retrieved from
If you believe in both comp and physicalism you should be able to
point on some error in the UDA.

>By the way, if they are not expressible in material terms,
>you are not able to present sensible (commonly acceptable) idealistic
>explanation to them, either.

I can do it partially, and, with comp, I can give light on the partial
gap too! (For exemple I can show the necessary existence of that gap, and
even study the geometry of the gap).The commonly acceptable idealist realm
I use is really just arithmetic including intensional (modal) variant of
it, like computability, provability, axiomatic of knowledge, axiomatic of

The UDA does not only shows that physics *must* be derivable from the
psychology of the universal turing machine, but it shows that
physics *can* be derived in some particular way.
(the particular way = translating the UDA in arithmetic, with Godel ...)
Ans when I do the derivation in that particular way (in the chapter 4),
I do get ..., well, let us say the shadow of the quantum.
And ten thousand open problems, to be precise :(
but no inconsistencies, so I think, at least, it is quite to
premature to abandon comp,
or mathematical idealism, for that reason.

The net advantage of what I propose is the appearance of a road
explaing the logical origin (from numberland) of the physical realm.
We don't need no more that hypothesis in a material universe
for justifying empirical bets.

Received on Wed Oct 10 2001 - 03:34:26 PDT

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