• TheMadFool
    8.4k
    Is this then your idea of the wise man, as a persona applicable to all the different sorts of particular knowledge, rather than a man of exalted nature, who seeks to know the foundation of knowledge in a general sense, like did a Socrates or Machiavelli or Rousseau or Kant or Nietzsche?Todd Martin

    You hit the [right] spot as far as I'm concerned. Wisdom is, if I understood the term correctly, a pan-discipline. It seems that wisdom is, all things considered, incomplete knowledge. That makes sense right? If one has knowledge, we would right away know how to handle any possible situation relevant to that knowledge. Wisdom wouldn't be necessary and this jibes with what you said about going to a qualified doctor instead of a wise man when we're ill.

    Given that our knowledge of our world is incomplete, given that there are inherent uncertainties, wisdom is a must-have for everyone. As a proof of this undeniable fact, you yourself said, in another post,
    the person we seek to give us clarity is not “the wise man”, whoever he is, but rather the wise doctor or judge or whoever specializes; do you not avow this is true?Todd Martin
  • Todd Martin
    139
    @Possibility Given that you think wisdom is simultaneously both possible and impossible, are there other things about which you hold the same opinion? Are there other things that are both possible and impossible? Are there any things that you think are only one or the other, but not both at the same time?
  • Todd Martin
    139
    @TheMadFool So wisdom appears to be a certain higher ineffable faculty that anyone might possess to be used when his particular knowledge fails. Would you agree that by this definition it applies to the following examples?

    When a thief seems to have been caught red-handed, he wisely concocts a fabulous story to make it seem his behavior is explained by innocent motives?

    When a liar wishes to commit perjury, he chooses his words wisely in a way that their meaning is so unclear that prosecutors drop the case against him, unsure they would be able to establish wrongdoing “beyond a reasonable doubt”?

    Finally, aren’t the wise assassins those who best know how to cover their tracks? how to leave no trace linking them to the crime?

    Are these not to be included among the wise and knowledgeable ppl we’re considering here?
  • eduardo
    8
    What would be the motivation to harm someone? The reason to not harm someone would be not to harm yourself. Just sit, and ponder infallibility. The product of this exercise is perfection of form and function.
  • TheMadFool
    8.4k
    So wisdom appears to be a certain higher ineffable faculty that anyone might possess to be used when his particular knowledge fails. Would you agree that by this definition it applies to the following examples?

    When a thief seems to have been caught red-handed, he wisely concocts a fabulous story to make it seem his behavior is explained by innocent motives?

    When a liar wishes to commit perjury, he chooses his words wisely in a way that their meaning is so unclear that prosecutors drop the case against him, unsure they would be able to establish wrongdoing “beyond a reasonable doubt”?

    Finally, aren’t the wise assassins those who best know how to cover their tracks? how to leave no trace linking them to the crime?

    Are these not to be included among the wise and knowledgeable ppl we’re considering here?
    Todd Martin

    First of all, I haven't been able to establish a necessary connection between wisdom and morality except one that seems to be true given what we know about how to keep the peace in society - being morally upstanding - and the OP's express wish for a, as he put it, "...better future..." assuming that by a "...better future..." the OP wants a peaceful society.

    Secondly, given that stealing and killing are detrimental to peaceful coexistence, a wise person would never engage in such activities and so how they would extricate themselves from such predicaments is moot.
  • Possibility
    1.8k
    Given that you think wisdom is simultaneously both possible and impossible, are there other things about which you hold the same opinion? Are there other things that are both possible and impossible? Are there any things that you think are only one or the other, but not both at the same time?Todd Martin

    I don’t think ‘simultaneously’ quite fits what I’m describing here - it seems like you’re trying to constrain this notion of ‘possibility/impossibility’ to a relative temporal position. Wisdom is not temporally located in my perspective - not like the keyboard I’m typing on, for instance.

    Truth is both possible and impossible, as is reality, ‘God’, etc. These are atemporal notions of infinite potentiality (despite attempts to define them within certain value systems). How the binary is tipped one way or the other structures the relational limits of existence for the experiencing subject, as well as what lies either side of those limits.
  • Todd Martin
    139
    @Possibility When you conceive of an acute geometrical angle in your mind, is that angle temporal or atemporal?
  • Todd Martin
    139
    @TheMadFool Didn’t the OP get deleted from this entire site because of the very un-peaceful language he used in anger to address a fellow poster? I don’t know the details, but it seems we may move here beyond that theoretical position he was unable to honor in practice.
  • Todd Martin
    139
    @eduardo “what would be the motivation to harm someone?”...Eduardo! What planet do you live on? (I would like to move there). I won’t wear my thumb out giving all the examples, for I’m sure you can do this for yourself, as anyone could.

    As far as infallibility is concerned, that’s exactly what the criminal strives for, his greatest honor: he wants to commit the perfect crime. If wisdom is a pan-discipline called in when knowledge fails, how does this notion exclude him who, e.g, wants to kill someone whose life insurance money he will collect, and then go on living unsuspected and wealthy, and peacefully in his community?
  • TheMadFool
    8.4k
    Didn’t the OP get deleted from this entire site because of the very un-peaceful language he used in anger to address a fellow poster? I don’t know the details, but it seems we may move here beyond that theoretical position he was unable to honor in practice.Todd Martin

    I see a paradox in the way forum mods are handling the matter of emotional outbursts with their accompanying offensive behavior.

    If memory serves, about 4 or 5 years ago there were cases of chat-bots registering for membership on some forum and that got the mods who were running the show worried.

    Chat-bots can engage in a decent conversation and some people do get fooled enough to believe that they're talking to a real person. However, chat-bots can't do emotions - no meltdowns, no offensive remarks. Yet, the mods didn't want anything to do with them - they were hunted down and immediately banned.

    Brett, the OP, expressed his anger, towards whom I have no idea, and that makes him human and not a chat-bot. By virtue of that fae should've been treated more kindly.

    What I'm driving at is the mods should decide whether they want real people with flaws or chat-bots with none. :zip: Don't tell on me. :zip: :grin:

    It's as if mods all over want machine-like zero emotional content in the threads. Reminds me of the Turing test. The shoe is now on the other foot, the tables have turned, humans have to be like unfeeling chat-bots to earn a place in internet forums.

    I remember being "tested" by a mod whether or not I was a chat-bot. Faer comments were designed to make me react emotionally. The conversation if we could call it that ended only when I did express my emotions. :chin:
  • Todd Martin
    139
    @TheMadFool I was offended by Merkwurdichliebe not long ago in the Coronavirus thread when he responded to one of my posts with extremely scurrilous language. He did not direct this language at me, but at a fictional old lady in my post that was attempting to protect her health by wearing a mask, and whom he knew I was sympathetic to. My views of how we should think and act in the pandemic were offensive to him, and I realized that in calling my fictional old dame the names he did, he was really fulminating against ME... but was just too timid to direct his rage at its real object.

    Until then his clever brash confrontational style had charmed me, but when I suddenly realized it was nothing more than a veil for pure vileness and vulgarity, I wanted to have nothing more to do with him. I never thought to “report” him, just told him what I thought of him and left it at that.

    I am sympathetic, however with your feelings about forum censorship. A few years ago I was a member of one in which a certain other member was banned for expressing ideas contrary to those of the moderator. I took offense at this and began a campaign of protest, using what rhetorical skill I possessed in thinly veiled diatribe to attack the establishment. The outcome may be summed up in the old rock & roll hit, “I fought the law and the law won”.

    As far as chat-bots are concerned, if I remember the Turing test correctly, he postulated that AI could be considered to be “conscious” whenever it’s conversation could not be distinguished between that of a human being. But I wonder now, many years since Turing, whether AI will not someday turn the tables on us, and itself design a test to determine whether some certain speech was produced by one of us rather than one of them!

    When I was a young man AI was not even in its infancy: it was scarcely a fetus, imitating logic in board games like chess or checkers, yet I, avidly perusing computer programming, knew even then that THAT was where it was at: designing computers to mimic the human mind...

    Finally (and all this is an aside from our topic, what wisdom is, to which I hope soon to return), it seems to me that, as god created man in his own image, man is creating AI in his...weren’t the first efforts at creating a computer meant to imitate the soul of man, if only initially according to his ability to “crunch numbers”, ie, merely calculate? But now the higher intellectual faculties of man are being artificially reproduced too, and I see no reason why they won’t, some soon day, be exactly imitated.
  • Todd Martin
    139
    Just tried to post something on “Bannings”, and was told no more posts allowed on that thread...what’s up with that?
  • Todd Martin
    139
    “This discussion is closed to new comments”...???
  • Possibility
    1.8k
    When you conceive of an acute geometrical angle in your mind, is that angle temporal or atemporal?Todd Martin

    The angle is atemporal, the thought is temporal.

    Just tried to post something on “Bannings”, and was told no more posts allowed on that thread...what’s up with that?Todd Martin

    The ‘Bannings’ thread is opened by mods to discuss particular banning events, and is usually closed again when the discussion goes off topic, which it invariably does.
  • Todd Martin
    139
    @Possibility Thanks for the explanation of the “Bannings” thread.

    When I think of an acute angle, assuming I and you both correctly conceive what an acute angle is, is that angle the same one you are thinking of whenever you think of an acute angle?
  • Possibility
    1.8k
    When I think of an acute angle, assuming I and you both correctly conceive what an acute angle is, is that angle the same one you are thinking of whenever you think of an acute angle?Todd Martin

    Potentially - an actual answer to this question will always be indeterminate, probabilistic or ‘fuzzy’ to some extent.
  • Todd Martin
    139
    @Possibility Do you not agree that an acute angle is one of less than 90 degrees?
  • Possibility
    1.8k
    Possibility Do you not agree that an acute angle is one of less than 90 degrees?Todd Martin

    One of - yes I do, but it’s like saying ‘I’m thinking of a number between zero and ninety’. An acute angle is a consolidated concept - the potential or conditions for thinking, not an actual thought (or angle).

    If you draw two lines converging to a point and say ‘that’s an acute angle’ and I look at it and agree, then I’d be confident that we’re actually thinking of the same angle - even though any measurement is still indeterminate.

    But when I think of an acute angle, it is only potentially the same angle you are thinking of whenever you think of an acute angle. Note: this is not the same as possibly - it’s much more precise than that.
  • Todd Martin
    139
    @Possibility So, if you and I were discussing the properties of acute angles, you would require that I draw one before you be assured that we were thinking of the same thing?
  • Edy
    13
    What's for lunch.
  • Possibility
    1.8k
    Possibility So, if you and I were discussing the properties of acute angles, you would require that I draw one before you be assured that we were thinking of the same thing?Todd Martin

    Not necessarily. We can and do successfully discuss the ‘properties’ of potential ‘things’ all the time. But they’re still fuzzy things lacking in certainty, if we’re honest. Not that it matters in most instances.

    If we were unable to agree on properties, mind you, that may be reason to believe our conception of an ‘acute angle’ differed in its structure. Then we would look to more clearly align our thinking in potentiality by seeking agreement on the concept’s relational structure (ie. its properties or actual instances).

    But we shouldn’t assume that we’re talking about an actual angle, or that any thought we may have regarding a concept, its properties or its instances would be identical to another on account of identifying the concept. Of course, we often do assume this, because it’s more efficient. But I think we should also recognise the potential for prediction error in doing so.
  • Todd Martin
    139
    @Possibility You said that when someone thinks of an acute angle, that the thought is temporal, the angle atemporal. You also said, however, that the acute angle is a fuzzy thing lacking in certainty.

    I think of the temporal things as the fuzzy uncertain ones, subject to the ravages of time, coming into being and perishing, like your keyboard. On the other hand, I conceive of the atemporal things as remaining unchanged throughout eternity, not subject to the vicissitudes of time.

    Obviously our conceptions of temporality vs. atemporality are dramatically different. Would you please indulge me by explaining your conception of these polar opposites?
  • Possibility
    1.8k
    You said that when someone thinks of an acute angle, that the thought is temporal, the angle atemporal. You also said, however, that the acute angle is a fuzzy thing lacking in certainty.

    I think of the temporal things as the fuzzy uncertain ones, subject to the ravages of time, coming into being and perishing, like your keyboard. On the other hand, I conceive of the atemporal things as remaining unchanged throughout eternity, not subject to the vicissitudes of time.

    Obviously our conceptions of temporality vs. atemporality are dramatically different. Would you please indulge me by explaining your conception of these polar opposites?
    Todd Martin

    I’ll give it a shot, but it might get complicated.

    Essentially, it’s a matter of perspective. When you think of temporal ‘things’ in this way, you’re doing so from your perception or experience of ‘eternity’. From this view, temporal ‘things’ are probably not so much fuzzy or uncertain as fragile and fleeting, wouldn’t you say? And when you describe atemporal ‘things’ as ‘unchanged’, it’s also from a particular perspective of ‘eternity’ - and these ‘things’ seem to be more solid by comparison.

    This is a common human perception - the eternity of time viewed as the linear progression of a three-dimensional universe. So when we talk about ‘things’, we assume that we’re referring to the exact same linear progression of time.

    But Einstein showed that time is not really a linear progression, but a fourth dimensional aspect. So, if we want a more accurate or inter-subjective structure of ‘eternity’ (especially if we’re going to discuss the properties of what is atemporal in relation to what is temporal), we need to restructure our understanding of time more accurately.

    Carlo Rovelli’s The Order of Time presents a comprehensive process of deconstructing and then reconstructing a more accurate ‘eternal’ perspective of time according to the latest physics. The basic idea is that the world is not made up of objects, but is rather a series of interrelated events, and time is how these events change in relation to each other. And each of our ‘linear’ perspectives can be understood as a fragile and fleeting consciousness or mind-event within this inter-subjective eternity or ‘block universe’.

    So now when we think of temporal or atemporal ‘things’ in a block universe, the mind-event is relating to other events, not objects. In this perspective, temporal ‘things’ exist within the mind-event as a complete and definitive event, coming into being, changing and perishing; while atemporal ‘things’ exist beyond the capacity of our particular mind-event, so we have no way of defining them as an event - they’re described in this block universe by their potential relation to temporal events. These are the properties of atemporal ‘things’: they may appear ‘unchanged’ in relation to you as a temporal event, but your perspective and mine of their qualitative relation to temporal events are neither identical nor static, as all temporal events (including us) change in relation to each other.

    In mathematics, the properties of atemporal ‘things’ or concepts describe a limiting relational structure between quantitative and qualitative potential. An angle refers to a potential directional relation between the potential convergence of two potential linear relations; in an acute angle, the quantified potential (or value) of that directional relation is anywhere between 0 and 90 degrees. When we think of an acute angle, this potential structure of relations is the extent of its definition. Its temporal and spatial location is indeterminate - we assume it is eternal, but to be honest, we wouldn’t know. It only appears eternally ‘unchanged’ from our limited ‘linear’ perspective of eternity, and by assuming everyone has the same ‘linear’ perspective we simply extrude that information uniformly across the block universe.

    It’s like assuming that a circle in 2D is really a cylinder in 3D, when it could very well be a sphere, a cone or an hourglass. It’s only when a different 2D measurement of what we understand to be the same object turns out to be not a circle but an oval, and another measurement is a triangle, that we attempt to position these measurements in relation to each other in a possible 3D space and start to construct a more accurate 3D image. Now consider the block universe as a 5D structure...
  • synthesis
    102
    ...what should the question be?Brett

    Why question?
  • Todd Martin
    139
    @Possibility You say “When we think of an acute angle...we assume it is eternal, but to be honest, we wouldn’t know.” So are you retracting your previous statement that the acute angle is atemporal?
  • Possibility
    1.8k
    You say “When we think of an acute angle...we assume it is eternal, but to be honest, we wouldn’t know.” So are you retracting your previous statement that the acute angle is atemporal?Todd Martin

    No - but I realise that I should have been clearer with that statement. Atemporal does not mean eternally ‘unchanged’ - it means ‘existing or considered without relation to time’. The difference here is subtle but important.
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