• DanielP
    5
    Is balance the invisible hand guiding the universe?

    Here's some evidence of the power of balance in the natural world:
    Newton's laws of motion: every action has an equal and opposite reaction; matter cannot be created or destroyed
    Osmosis: a solute spreading equally out in a solution (I know there is a more technical definition of that)
    The cosmological principle: matter is spread relatively evenly out in all directions as far as our telescopes can see

    In the ethical world:
    Karma - good things happen to good people, and vice versa
    Aristotle's mean of virtues - virtue is a balance, or an average, between extremes
    Jesus's golden rule - treat your neighbor as yourself; in other words, your neighbor is equal to you

    In art:
    Symmetry is beautiful

    In infinity and eternity:
    This can't be proven, but say that the universe is infinite and eternal. (The size of the universe is monstrous, and we have not seen it all. We also know the Big Bang probably occurred, but common sense says that there was something before that. An infinite, eternal universe seems more probable than a finite universe; but can't prove it.) Let's roll with an infinite and eternal universe, or infinite spacetime, in physic's language. In infinite spacetime, every point in the universe is in the middle of universe, meaning every point is perfectly balanced. Also, if we are in eternity, then every moment of "now" is in the perfect middle, or balance, between infinite past and infinite future.

    So if balance seems like the guiding hand in the universe, is it something to believe in?
  • DanielP
    5
    Also, homeostasis in medicine is a great example of balance. Another one: our guts have around 7 trillion bacteria living in it. And massive variety of bacteria that help us derive nutrition from food, and "balance" each other out. C Diff is a bacteria that can dominate the other bacteria and prevent others flourishing. Basically, a balanced gut with a wide variety of bacteria is the norm, and when we get unhealthy or imbalanced, certain bacteria dominate at the expense of others.
  • 3017amen
    871


    Very inspiring and insightful post(s).

    I'll add one to Poetic's listing:

    27. Consciousness/subconsciousness

    Questions; much like the numerous examples of balance, for example, good bacteria v. bad bacteria, what if we only had good and no bad? What if we only had bad but no good? And finally, and maybe more mysterious, what if we just had consciousness and no subconsciousness, and are they truly opposite's?

    No more multitasking LoL
  • DanielP
    5


    Interesting question on consciousness and subconsciousness, I haven't thought much about them. What's your perspective on them?
    On the good vs bad bacteria, I think with such a big universe balancing out, I think there are many bacteria that are many different shades of good and bad to us, depending on the situation, and also depending on how they interact with our environment. We have more bacterial cells in our intestines than total cells in our human bodies usually, so we could almost view the bacteria as using us as hosts to propagate themselves on planet earth.
  • DanielP
    5


    Did you reach any conclusion or conclusions from your post on balance and opposites?
  • Banno
    6.5k
    An unstable system will change - that's what being unstable is.

    If, as it wobbles around, the system finds a state in which it is stable, it will stop and stay there.

    We see balance because it lasts longer than imbalance.

    It's not because of some magic had by balance.
  • PoeticUniverse
    781
    Did you reach any conclusion or conclusions from your post on balance and opposites?DanielP

    Not anything is stable, for everything leaks, I guess, or else a perfect zero-sum would have put existence out of business.
  • 3017amen
    871
    Interesting question on consciousness and subconsciousness, I haven't thought much about them. What's your perspective on them?DanielP

    Consciousness is irrational or illogical or otherwise beyond rational explanation... . It's like saying red and not red at the same time (LEM).

    I always use the typical example of driving a car while daydreaming and risking an accident. Part of your brain is consciously working out details of navigation, while the other part has you thinking about work or a relationship or solving a math problem or whatever else you're preoccupied with... .

    Cognitive science says your consciousness is driving and your subconsciousness is daydreaming. Or is it the other way around?

    So we have an unresolved paradox of sorts...or brute mystery. Our conscious existence appears beyond explaination. But so is cosmology, metaphysics, phenomenology, and the concept of God.

    Could it be plausible that in another world, our logic would be totally different? For example, would the metaphysical a priori language of mathematics be totally different (ToE)?

    In any case we're apparently barred from ultimate knowledge about our existence. Yet as you suggest, there appears to be a metaphysical will in nature. Self-aware Beings who realize through abstract thinking, which in itself transcends Darwinion survival value, that there exists balance-homeostasis in our world.
  • 180 Proof
    398
    An unstable system will change - that's what being unstable is.

    If, as it wobbles around, the system finds a state in which it is stable, it will stop and stay there.

    We see balance because it lasts longer than imbalance.

    It's not because of some magic had by balance.
    Banno

    Buzzkill.
  • DanielP
    5

    Very nice. Do you think one reason that consciousness appears to be irrational is that the universe cannot be defined solely by logic, and requires or other tools to describe it?


    Like the quote. Maybe the cosmos is on a sliding scale between imbalance and balance. Do you think it is? And if so, where on the sliding scale would the whole cosmos appear to be?
  • 3017amen
    871
    Do you think one reason that consciousness appears to be irrational is that the universe cannot be defined solely by logic, and requires or other tools to describe it?DanielP

    I think that's a great question. Sort of an all inclusive type of question that could lead one into many areas or directions. Gee, where to start.

    1. My first thought is two-fold: the Kantian thing-in-themselves viz the nature of conscious existence. Then the a priori metaphysical language of mathematics having its limitations in describing the natural world-albeit pretty amazing thus far in theoretical physics.

    2. The parallel is that both concepts are a priori.

    3. As far as other tools, it would be worth looking into the technical aspects of our ability to discover truly novel ideas in propositional logic via Kant's Modalities: Possibility / Impossibility Existence / Non-existence Necessity / Contingency.

    "Kant's Categories are a list of that which can be said of every object, they are related only to human language. In making a verbal statement about an object, a speaker makes a judgment. A general object, that is, every object, has attributes that are contained in Kant's list of Categories. In a judgment, or verbal statement, the Categories are the predicates that can be asserted of every object and all objects."

    A good read here would be The Mind of God by theoretical physicist Paul Davies.

    In short, I believe we have a problem with knowing objects themselves, as well as a problem with knowing the nature of our consciousness and how it works. So we have a problem with the perceiver us, along with the object in question. In other words, we can't escape the metaphysical components that rear their philosophical head's in the phenomenological world of perception/existence.

    Can experience itself, be the tool that discovers and uncovers existential mystery? Or are we back to intuitional/metaphysical theories about our existence...can we use both to infer possibility?

    Right now, in words, the closest we come to that answer is the synthetic a priori. That would be one answer to your question about intellectual tools... .
  • 3017amen
    871
    In the ethical world:
    Karma - good things happen to good people, and vice versa
    Aristotle's mean of virtues - virtue is a balance, or an average, between extremes
    Jesus's golden rule - treat your neighbor as yourself; in other words, your neighbor is equal to you
    DanielP

    Your above quote is yet again another direction or discipline one could explore. In ethics [how to live a life of happiness], I think it's important.

    Real quick, politically and religiously, and in a general sense, I'm what you would call a moderate. I make a conscious effort not to dichotomize life's experience. Easier said than done I know, but as you suggest, balance has its virtues. Aristotle, Maslow and many other's have advocated such. The new term is generally called hybrid. Whether it is social norms, laws, politics, food consumption, music, vehicles, computer devices, on and on, striking a magical balance indeed has its virtues. Many things in life that work well are combining the virtues of two opposites into a hybrid. Obviously, in some ways, that is nothing new under the sun.

    Are there exceptions to some of this of course... .

    Once again, in short, I too believe in Balance. PoeticU and other's here have suggested same. Thank you for the reminder.
  • 180 Proof
    398
    Maybe the cosmos is on a sliding scale between imbalance and balance. Do you think it is?DanielP

    Yeah. Entropy. :point:

    And if so, where on the sliding scale would the whole cosmos appear to be? — DanielP

    :chin: ummm ... c13.8 billion years on from the cosmos @ planck radius & Minmum entropy (or X-hundreds of billions(?) of years away from Maximum entropy (i.e. thermodynamic equilibrium) aka "balance" - or so 21st century theoretical cosmologists extrapolate / speculate).
  • Mark Dennis
    444
    Great post! Welcome to Daoism/Taoism. :)
  • Mark Dennis
    444
    Not anything is stable, for everything leaks, I guess, or else a perfect zero-sum would have put existence out of business.PoeticUniverse

    Is there no balancing point between perfect stability and extreme instability? Low Entropy Abstract and physical structures for example?
  • Gnomon
    237
    Is balance the invisible hand guiding the universe?DanielP
    If not, it should be for philosophers. My personal philosophy is based on the BothAnd Principle. Which is : My coinage for the holistic principle of Complementarity, as illustrated in the Yin/Yang symbol. Opposing or contrasting concepts are always part of a greater whole. Conflicts between parts can be reconciled or harmonized by putting them into the context of a whole system.
    http://blog-glossary.enformationism.info/page10.html
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