• Janus
    5.9k


    If we observe that some things are physically interacting and hence connected, then that is our experience and understanding, which you have already agreed we have reason to believe reflects reality. So you are contradicting yourself, and your position is not consistent or coherent.
  • apokrisis
    4.3k
    So what the experiment does, is to place a limit such that it is not always possible to identify the causal sequence of some set of eventsBanno

    Rather it illustrates the contextuality of causation, the falseness of the presumptions of local realism.

    Your conventional notion of causality was already dead and buried. This latest experiment dumps another truckload of dirt on the grave.

    If that counts as philosophically uninteresting, so be it.
  • litewave
    408
    My experience is that collections exist even when they are loosely connected. I don't feel the need to deny their objective existence.

    And I am far from being alone in this. Most mathematicians think that mathematical objects objectively exist, and these objects may not even be physical things.
  • Metaphysician Undercover
    4.4k
    What are the contents of this purported correlation? What things are being connected, correlated, and/or associated with each other?

    Do you have an example?
    creativesoul

    For example, thoughts and ideas are connected and correlated. This occurs entirely within the being. Therefore sensation is not necessary for such activity. That is my argument, these connections and correlations occur entirely within the being, therefore sensation is not necessary. Have you ever had a dream?

    It's your expectation that physics ought be able to distinguish the temporal order of events that is inadequate.Banno

    So you accept it as an epistemological principle that physicists ought not try to determine the temporal order of events?

    The magnitude says that 100 is smaller than 200 and thus orders the numbers from smaller to bigger.litewave

    As I explained, to say 100 is smaller than 200, does not establish an order from smaller to bigger, it just states that one is smaller than the other. Size, and order are two distinct things. Why wouldn't the bigger be prior to the smaller?

    All points in space exist and thus they constitute all possible groups of points, that is, all possible lines and curves in that space.litewave

    A line is a specific set of points. All possible groups of points does not make a line, nor does it make a curve.
  • Banno
    3.4k
    It's your expectation that physics ought be able to distinguish the temporal order of events that is inadequate.
    — Banno

    So you accept it as an epistemological principle that physicists ought not try to determine the temporal order of events?
    Metaphysician Undercover

    This is the sort of reply that has me wondering why I bother to reply to you.

    I guess my answer is that physics ought not try to determine the temporal order of events were there is none.
  • Metaphysician Undercover
    4.4k
    I guess my answer is that physics ought not try to determine the temporal order of events were there is none.Banno

    You mean when the events are simultaneous? Isn't simultaneity frame dependent though?
  • Banno
    3.4k
    You mean when the events are simultaneous?Metaphysician Undercover

    No; I mean as in the example in the OP.
  • Metaphysician Undercover
    4.4k

    What the OP describes is an inability to determine temporal order, not a lack of temporal order. That was my point. Your reply was that you thought it was somehow wrong to expect that physicists should be able to determine temporal order. Do you hold this as a principle?
  • Banno
    3.4k
    What the OP describes is an inability to determine temporal order, not a lack of temporal order.Metaphysician Undercover

    That's just not so. What the OP describes is exactly a lack of a causal sequence.

    Your reply was that you thought it was somehow wrong to expect that physicists should be able to determine temporal order.Metaphysician Undercover

    That's right. If there is no temporal order, it would be wrong to expect it.

    Do you hold this as a principle?Metaphysician Undercover

    Principle. What do you have packed away in that little bag?
  • Metaphysician Undercover
    4.4k
    That's just not so. What the OP describes is exactly a lack of a causal sequence.Banno

    A lack of causal sequence refers to unrelated events. What the quoted article in the op describes is related events in which the temporal order cannot be determined.

    “The weirdness of quantum mechanics means that events can happen without a set order… This is called ‘indefinite causal order’ and it isn’t something that we can observe in our everyday life.”

    When physicists cannot determine the order of events, we cannot conclude that there is no order to those events, because this would require the premise that every time that physicists can't determine something it is indeterminate. I think you would agree that this is a nonsense premise. Therefore, when physicists cannot determine the order of certain events, we ought not conclude that there is no order, only that the physicists cannot determine the order. Is that not agreeable to you?
  • Banno
    3.4k
    No. It seems you have (again) entirely missed the crux of QM here. It is not that the sequence of events is just unknown; it is that the sequence of events is indeterminate. See the chat above.
  • creativesoul
    3.4k


    I was going to show the inherent inadequacy of "arbitrary" when defined as you have, but it's no matter now. Banno wants the thread back on track. I'll oblige.
  • Metaphysician Undercover
    4.4k
    No. It seems you have (again) entirely missed the crux of QM here. It is not that the sequence of events is just unknown; it is that the sequence of events is indeterminate. See the chat above.Banno

    I've seen the chat. There's a big problem. When something appears to be indeterminate it is impossible to prove that it actually is indeterminate, until all possible techniques for determination have been ruled out. Quantum mechanics is far from that point, it actually appears quite primitive in its capacity for devising possible techniques, so failures in determination are most likely failures of technique.
  • creativesoul
    3.4k
    It does not follow from the fact that we cannot definitively know the causal sequence of events that there is no causal sequence of events.
  • Banno
    3.4k
    And here you wander off on your own. Have fun.
  • creativesoul
    3.4k
    QM interpretations are fodder.
  • creativesoul
    3.4k
    It's a misnomer of sorts anyway. QM is math. Math has rigid designations(meaning). Interpreting QM into normal language is bunk.
  • Janus
    5.9k


    What's the point in telling me about something you were going to attempt to do? :roll:


    My experience is that collections exist even when they are loosely connected. I don't feel the need to deny their objective existence.

    And I am far from being alone in this. Most mathematicians think that mathematical objects objectively exist, and these objects may not even be physical things.
    litewave

    I don't believe you. You don't experience an arbitrary collection of objects. BTW, an actual collection of objects may also be arbitrary or non-arbitrary. An example of the former would a book, a chicken's egg, a bucket of dirt, and a handkerchief. An example of the latter would be a bunch of plants. The actuality of the collection consists in its being able to be viewed (edit; sensed). But just nominating a bunch of random objects and calling it a collection does not make it any more than a conceptual collection.

    As to the purported existence of mathematical objects: what kind of existence do they have? We know that things exist for us materially (things we can sense) and also ideally (things we can think or imagine); what other kind of existence can you think of?
  • creativesoul
    3.4k
    For example, thoughts and ideas are connected and correlated.Metaphysician Undercover

    You asserted that physiological sensory perception isn't necessary for drawing correlations or meaning.

    Now you claim that thoughts and ideas are connected and correlated. So if your objection want to be coherent, you must now admit that thoughts and ideas are not existentially dependent upon sensory perception.

    Have fun with that. I'm out.
  • creativesoul
    3.4k
    Reality does not care what we find special or significant. It just is.litewave

    If reality includes other people it most certainly cares about that.

    :wink:
  • creativesoul
    3.4k
    What's the point in telling me about something you were going to attempt to do?Janus

    Go back a page or two... I already did. No need to do it again. I won't reply to you here in this thread about that though. Banno's back on track.
  • Janus
    5.9k


    Nothing but vague suggestions, innuendos and promissory notes, nary an actual argument to be found as usual!
  • Metaphysician Undercover
    4.4k
    So if your objection want to be coherent, you must now admit that thoughts and ideas are not existentially dependent upon sensory perception.creativesoul

    No, I gave thoughts and ideas, as examples of connections and correlations which are carried out completely within the living being, to support my premise that connections, correlations and associations are carried out completely within the being. Sensations are of things external to the living being and are therefore not a necessary part of such processes.

    Have fun with that. I'm out.creativesoul

    If you want to demonstrate faults with my premises or my logic, then be my guest. If the logic is sound, and you'd prefer to ignore it and live in your own fantasy world, which excludes the possibility of such processes without sensation, then that choice is open to you as well.
  • litewave
    408
    Why wouldn't the bigger be prior to the smaller?Metaphysician Undercover

    It can - it is the reversed order to "smaller prior to bigger". Magnitude defines both orders.

    All possible groups of points does not make a line, nor does it make a curve.Metaphysician Undercover

    Some of those groups do.
  • litewave
    408
    I don't believe you. You don't experience and arbitrary collection of objects.Janus

    Why not? I experience any collection of objects as a collection.

    The actuality of the collection consists in its being able to be viewed.Janus

    You mean sensed? Why would the objective existence of anything depend on whether some creature can sense it?

    As to the purported existence of mathematical objects: what kind of existence do they have? We know that things exist for us materially (things we can sense) and also ideally (things we can think or imagine); what other kind of existence can you think of?Janus

    We can also infer the objective existence of things we can't sense from things we can sense and think. I think that's the case with some sets/collections and other mathematical objects.
  • Janus
    5.9k
    Why not? I experience any collection of objects as a collection.litewave

    No, you experience many actual collections of objects; trees, dogs, parks, cities, people, etc, etc, but you only imagine or think of arbitrary collections of totally unrelated objects. ( I say "totally unrelated" because the only relation they have with one another might be merely that they both exist, or that they could be tenuously associated by thinking about them in relation to categories that might have some overlap).

    You mean sensed? Why would the objective existence of anything depend on whether some creature can sense it?litewave

    Yes, sensed: I believe our very idea of real existence comes from the idea of the existence of those objects we can sense. There is also ideal existence; the existence of the content of our ideas, but why should we think that such content exists independently of us in any way analogous to the way we think the publicly available objects of sense do? And you haven't answered the question already posed: is there another mode of existence we can conceive of apart from the ideal existence of the content of our thoughts and the concrete existence of the objects of sense. That's the question you need to answer if you want Platonism to be taken seriously.

    We can also infer the objective existence of things we can't sense from things we can sense and think. I think that's the case with some sets/collections and other mathematical objects.litewave

    Yes, but what exactly is that "objective existence" if it is not concrete material existence and yet is something more than the merely ideal existence of the contents of thought?
  • litewave
    408
    No, you experience many actual collections of objects; trees, dogs, parks, cities, people, etc, etc, but you only imagine or think of arbitrary collections of totally unrelated objects.Janus

    Then I infer that even objects that I can't sense together as a collection, in fact constitute a collection. I infer it from what collections have in common. It seems arbitrary, without any ontological relevance to say that some objects constitute a collection and some don't. Why do you think a city is an objective collection, for example? Because when you see it from a plane it seems to form a relatively compact object? And when you are inside that city, do you still see it as a collection?

    I believe our very idea of real existence comes from the idea of the existence of those objects we can sense.Janus

    And I find it absurd to believe that something only exists objectively when someone can sense it. Did the Moon exist objectively before anyone sensed it?

    Yes, but what exactly is that "objective existence" if it is not concrete material existence and yet is something more than the merely ideal existence of the contents of thought?Janus

    It may be an object in a different universe which we may never be able to sense. There may or may not be other conscious beings in that universe that can sense it. It may be an object in a world that only has space and no time - and no life, so it cannot be sensed by anyone. And then there are abstract objects like numbers, which don't have any particular position in space or time and so can't be sensed, and yet the truths about numbers seem to be objective truths, independent of humans, and also reflected in our physical world.
  • Janus
    5.9k
    And I find it absurd to believe that something only exists objectively when someone can sense it. Did the Moon exist objectively before anyone sensed it?litewave

    I haven't said that the objective existence of anything depends on its actually being sensed; I have said that our idea of objective existence comes from the idea of things being publicly available to sense. Of course this idea just is, contrary to the idea that the objective existence of things depends on actually being sensed and only obtains when things are being sensed, that the things of sense exist even when not being sensed.

    and yet the truths about numbers seem to be objective truths, independent of humans, and also reflected in our physical world.litewave

    This speaks to the evolved common invariances of human reasoning, which I would say are themselves objective (in the sense of being independent of what anybody thinks about them, and of whether anybody is thinking about them) and are plausibly reflected in neural structures.

    You still haven't attempted to answer the hard question I posed to you.
  • litewave
    408
    You still haven't attempted to answer the hard question I posed to you.Janus

    I gave you examples of objects that may exist outside of our minds and unable to be sensed: abstract objects and objects in worlds without time.
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