Re: joining.

From: chris peck <>
Date: Sun, 03 Jul 2005 03:17:56 +0000

Hi Bruno;

'. Earth *is* flat locally.'

The idea that the earth is an orb is not counter intuitive even though the
earth is flat locally. It counters no logical principles. The idea that
particles can be in more than one place at the same time is not counter
intuitive because it is a 'non local' fact - ie concerning things that are
'unseen' - , but because 'particle' is traditionally defined in a particular
way which logically prohibits such a fact. Our definition is at fault, our
intuition is sound.

'Surely modern physics makes many counter intuitive,
>but if you look at history you see that physicist take time to accept them.

Which counter intuitive idea should be accepted? That there are infinite
universes existing beyond falsification? That possibilities collapse into
actuality on being looked at (again beyond falsification)? Both fit the
equations I am led to understand. I dont think either of these
interpretations will be accepted for long.

I think physicists continue to hope for a classical universe underlying and
deterministically explaining quantum 'reality'.

I think Quantum mechanics is the first time in the history of science that
truelly counter intuitive ideas, indeed illogical ideas, have been presented
and asked to be accepted. Unless someone can offer another example.

'>Like in classical logic. You can prove things without constructing

But logic proves validity, not truth. We shouldnt assume there is any truth
about a valid argument. We can question the premises of a valid argument,
and should do so if its conclusions are as counter intuitive as those of the
DH. But which premises are at fault?

surely its the definition of 'typical' as having birth ranks placed at the
peak of a rising population count.

Isnt the DH an epistemological argument really?. Its about what to expect
might happen rather than what will happen. I can have no reason to say I am
typical or untypical in my birth rank in this respect untill I know what the
maximum count will be, and I shouldnt therefore use the DH to speculate
about what the maximum count should be. I should be resolutely agnostic
about this.

'If the humans solve all "human problems and prevent all
>risk of apocalypse, or build bunker for all citizens" then the DH entails
>we will all die for an unknown reason.'

isnt there is a sense in which (in a constantly rising population) anyone in
history could formulate the DH and come to the same conclusion, and looking
back we can see their expectancy would be wrong. Over and over again the DH
would predict doom soon, yet it never comes. Inductively then, we shouldnt
accept it.

>(nor to be sure the idea of absolute self-sampling among humans, why not

Do you mean that we should interpret the DH so that its reference class can
contain all types of organism, and kind of maximise the priors accordingly
to temper the DH conclusion, then I think there is something in that. But I
still prefer to just intuitively shrug it off.

Anyhow, getting back to your papers.

Im reading 'Mechanism And Personal Identity'. Its hard. You know ive got
Perry's book on Personal Identity right here, and your paper is a lot harder
than that. The amount of formal logic is a little daunting for me, are there
any good summeries?

I'll maybe dig out 'Sane'.

'Some on this list agrees
>physicality could be secondary and could or should emerge from some
>relative or absolute measure on the set of "Observer-Moments". '

Idealism? OMs being little bits of consciousness? If so, Im familier with
the idea, but not the dove tail argument for it.

'>As you see we dig deep: the primitive nature of nature is really
>where Aristotle opposed himself against Plato, and since 2300 years most
>follows Aristotle.

Is that the argument here? Whether matter is an emergent property or whether
it is a substrate?

'and since 2300 years most follows Aristotle.'

Who did Kant follow? Didnt he argue quite powerfully for agnosticism here?

Speak Soon hopefully.


>From: Bruno Marchal <>
>To: "chris peck" <>
>CC: Everything-List List <>
>Subject: Re: joining.
>Date: Fri, 1 Jul 2005 15:55:10 +0200
>Le 30-juin-05, à 12:57, chris peck a écrit :
>>'intuition is always like believing that the earth is flat.'(BM)
>>I disagree. People believed the earth was flat because it looked flat,
>>they didnt intuit this idea. Intuition is not just the absence of any
>>doubt about a proposition, intuition is active not passive.
>Well I can agree. My "earth is flat" was perhaps not a good example. I just
>like it because it makes the pointing toward the idea of local truth. Earth
>*is* flat locally.
>>For many reasons I think that is wrong. Intuition is experience in action,
>>it is functioning wisdom. It is refined and precise, and almost always
>... always right locally. Don't take this as dismissing intuition. Of
>course I relate intution and first person knowledge and Brouwer's
>intutionism, and all this with some purpose in mind related to the main
>points discussed here. We will recur again on all this.
>>Im troubled by the extent to which counter intuitive ideas are embraced
>>seemingly /because/ they are counter intuitive. It almost becomes the case
>>that the more counter intuitive a hypothesis is, the more we trust it.
>>Theoretical physics is testament to that surely?
>Here I disagree. Surely modern physics makes many counter intuitive, but if
>you look at history you see that physicist take time to accept them.
>>What is counter intuitive about the DH is that it offers no understandable
>>mechanism for its conclusion.
>Like in classical logic. You can prove things without constructing them.
>>This is what immediately strikes one when you read the DH for the first
>>time, there is an air of supernatural about it. How can the eventual
>>population of the universe - however reference classes are defined - ever
>>have a backwardly causal relationship with a cataclysm today?
>But that was not the goal. Accepting the premisses and the reasoning-ways
>you get the conclusions, even if you don't see the "causal" links.
>>Furthermore, im sure that your expressed belief in the truth of the DH
>>doesnt /actually/ interfere with your day to day routine.
>As I said I find the DH correct, I just don't buy its hypotheses (nor to be
>sure the idea of absolute self-sampling among humans, why not bacteria).
>>You argue with folk like me, rather than build bunkers in preparation for
>>the apocalypse. Why?
>Here I totally differ from "Leslie". Would I bought the DH (reasoning +
>premisses), I would definitely not build a bunker. The "beauty" of the DH
>argument, is that, as you told yourself, he does not refer to "causality"
>or "concrete reasons", so that if DH is correct there is absolutely no
>point in trying to build a bunker to prevent it. If the humans solve all
>"human problems and prevent all risk of apocalypse, or build bunker for all
>citizens" then the DH entails we will all die for an unknown reason. But as
>I said the DH premisses do not make sense for me.
>>This is quite obvious from the ease with which counter intuitive
>>conclusions can be derived from baysean reasoning in conjunction with 1rst
>>person perspectives generally.
>I agree. In particular Leslie error (imo) is to mix 1 and 3 person
>reasoning in a non genuine way.
>>Anyway Im arguing more than I wanted to about all this. I ought to go and
>>download one of your papers.
>If you read the SANE paper I would like to know if you follow the UDA (the
>Universal Dovetailer Argument) which shows that IF the comp hypothesis is
>true THEN physics is (in a constructive sense) a branch of computer
>science. Take it easy and don't hesitate to make comments for any step of
>the reasoning. Some on this list agrees physicality could be secondary and
>could or should emerge from some relative or absolute measure on the set of
>"Observer-Moments". We disagree on what are exactly those OMs, or about the
>way to analyze the "measure", etc.
>As you see we dig deep: the primitive nature of nature is really where
>Aristotle opposed himself against Plato, and since 2300 years most follows

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Received on Sat Jul 02 2005 - 23:29:34 PDT

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