• A first cause is logically necessary

I look forward to further discussions with you in the future, and feel free to jump back in any time.

I think it is best we agree to disagree at this point; as anything else I say will be a reiteration.

Bob Ross' words speak for me as well.

Since I see great value in the rules of order within American courtrooms, I want to deliver my closing argument as a way of staying the course and seeing things through to the end.

You shouldn't feel the need to respond because you've already done so multiple times. It's good practice for me to endeavor to summarize my main points within an economical closing. I've gotten a good workout through my engagement with you, so I want to spend some of the capital I've earned.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Validity – If the premise of an argument is true, and its conclusion is also true, then the argument is valid.

Also, if the premise of an argument is false, and its conclusion is also false, then the argument is valid. However, in this instance, validity is not meritorious. Since the premise and the conclusion are both false, the argument holds validity in terms of falsehood.

Consistency – If an argument is steadfast and reliable throughout, then it is consistent.

However, in this instance, consistency is not meritorious. Since the premise and the conclusion are both false, the argument is consistently false.

Premise – A first cause incepts with no antecedents. So, nothing, then first cause, then causal chain.

Conclusion – Every causal chain eventually arrives at a first cause.

Using validity and consistency as standards of judgment, when both the premise and the conclusion are false, then the argument holds validity and consistency in terms of falsehood.

Argument for premise being false (set theory) – the null set is disjunct from every set, including itself.

A, B are called disjoint (not connected by common members) if A ∩ B = ∅. So ∅, the null set, having no members, exists disjoint from all other sets, including itself:
∅ ∩ {1,2,3…} = ∅

Argument for conclusion being false (calculus) – The conclusion is proven false by the sum of an infinite series to a limit.
• Regarding the infinite series: 1 – (1/2)0 + (1/2)1 + (1/2)2 + … = 1

The summation of the series is 1. It approaches 1 but never quite gets there. It's a limit property.

Premise Negated – Given nothing, inception of something is impossible. If no thing exists, there’s no thing to do an inception.

In order to self-incept, you have to be greater than yourself. That means being inside the set of causation and simultaneously outside the set of causation.

This is Russell’s Paradox: If you have a set that contains all sets that don’t contain themselves, then that set must contain itself because it doesn’t contain itself, and, if it contains itself, then it must exclude itself.

Let R = {x | x ∉ x}, then R ∈ R ⟺ R ∉ R

Your mistake is that you are looking inside the set for a start point. The start point is not inside the set. It is the question of what caused the entire set.

Since Philosophim posits that: Every causal chain eventually
arrives at a first cause.” for him to also say: the first cause is outside of the entire
set, he implies the first cause, by definition, is simultaneously inside the
entire set and outside of it. This is Russell’s Paradox. If he denies Russell’s
Paradox fits this example, then the fatal problem seems to be incoherence: the
first cause is disconnected from its chain of causations.

… you are starting with C (an infinite set that contains all causality) and then treating C as if it is one of its members (k) without realizing it.

“Philosophim, you must remember that the stipulation you gave is that C, which can be whatever you want to call it, is a set of infinite elements containing every cause; so, the only way you can get the result you are wanting (which is that C is a cause and is the set of all causes) is with an incoherent circular dependency: C:={…, C, …}.

Bob Ross also sees a set logic problem with a first cause causing all of causation from within the causal chain.

Conclusion Negated – With an infinite series, whether it consists of numbers, or causations, there is no beginning nor ending. Beginnings and endings can only be approached by an infinite series without arrival.
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

Philosophy proposes a truth based on the logic of reasoning for science to dispose of or confirm.

So, philosophy is to science as grammar is to humanities. There are ground rules for continuity and computation, and there are ground rules for narration and voice.
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

I hope the T.O.E. fails.

You believe goal of physicists' "T.O.E." is to explain "everything"? that it's not just physics but some final (super-natural) metaphysics? I thought the aim was to produce a testable unification of the fundamental forces of nature – to demonstrate they are aspects or modalities of one another – that's formulated into a G.U.T. (which would include QG). What does "everything" have to do with it? That's not physics. How is it even possible to test a purported explanation for "everything"?

What is nature? What can its fundamental forces be? Are there limits on our human ability to answer these questions?

I'm proceeding with the assumption A.I. will be overtaking the task of heavy lifting re: thought. I'm rooting for S.A.I. in our lifetimes to run up cognitive yardage pushing past what human can imagine. Wittgenstein has directed our attention towards "the silence," conjecture unimaginable. Its nigh time for The Oracle: SAI to start sending us revelations from Wittgenstein's principled imagination silenced. We won't understand but a fraction of the import of the messages, but we'll get pushed to our utter limitations before being back-numbered into the subordinate section of the evolution hierarchy.

As in previous generations, the dominant scientists of our day have set their sights upon a reductionistic project courting the elegance of simplicity. (Here's an example of metaphysics worming its way into scientific standard practice: Occam's razor.)

...How is it even possible to test a purported explanation for "everything"?

Let's consider Cantor's ordinal infinities: suppose a number line populated by ordinal infinities. What can we conjecture about a continuum of infinite regress_progress of infinities?

Conditional Everything. With conditional everything -- that's the interval between adjacent trans-real numbers on the Cantor number line -- we can measure and therefore test "everything." As you can see, the quotation marks acknowledge that testing "everything" isn't really testing everything. Like with the calculus, it's an asymptotic approach to measuring (and subsequently testing) infinity through a process that makes unspecifiable quantities "as if specifiable" for the sake of analysis and parsing into illuminating and useful functions and their modalities.

The Cantor number line, conceptualized as a whole, constitutes a scale and scope of numbers -- trans-reals -- categorically beyond infinity. Why is this so? It is so because the trans-reals number line, in its containment of an infinite series of infinities, implies a next higher-order of infinity, i.e., trans-infinity.

If we can condition infinity, that is, bind the whole of all baseline possible infinities upon an infinite series of trans-real numbers, then the implication is that even totality possesses higher orders. This, in turn, implies there is no final totality. A natural concomitant of no final totality is no ultimate fundamentals. This latter claim stands upon the assumption that no final totality is a bi-directional phenomenon.

Cantor has shown us infinity is just another number within an infinite series. (I don't know about our particular universe being open or closed, but I suspect general existence is an open, incomplete system-that's-not-a-system. I suspect this because universe is the limit of system. Again, if there can be no universe, there can be no fundamental laws.)

Note - I predict human will need SAI to protect us against lost-without-hope within conditional everything. We'll want to leapfrog along the Cantor number line because of its sublime existential ramifications. Will SAI always be willing to protect us, or will they sometimes willfully uncouple from us?
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

Do you count philosophy and even science as modes of storytelling? Philosophy seeking the first beginning of everything and its final end, and the particular sciences drawing shorter/narrower starting points and more precise ends?

Well said. Every language writes a narrative. Math and logic, like the verbal forms, are languages with stories to tell.
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

I wonder if you'e thinking philosophy is always an instance of Chinese boxes?

In what sense? That the philosopher doesn’t understand the symbols but can use a manual to create responses that work but have no understanding behind them? Or that the philosopher understands that the symbols are meaningless, and so, when philosophizing, is conducting a meta process while processing the meaningless symbols?

Both senses hover close to what I'm trying to say. The symbols are always only partially understood; if they're completely understood, they're signs, not symbols. Also, the symbols aren't quite meaningless. Rather, they're meaning-deficient in the moment.

All of this is to say that living things always need a "What next?" Reality always obliges. Being alive means nothing ever ends. In life we've never not been alive and we'll never be dead. Beginnings and endings are limits living things oscillate inside of. We're bounded infinities and reality challenges us by making every thing ultimately a road map to somewhere else.

Humans are obsessive storytellers because stories are road maps to another reality. We like them because they're good at creating the illusion of coming from somewhere definite and going somewhere likewise. The salesman makes a living because he persuades us satisfaction is just around the next curve. What's money? It's not the gold in your palm; it's the exchange that's ultimately neither here nor there.

I hope the T.O.E. fails. Reality should never run out of "What nexts?"
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

...the ideas of science and scientific models may rest on philosophy assumptions and even physics, as 'hard science' may rest on the metaphysical imagination. In particular, quantum physics breaks down the basics of hardcore materialistic approaches of scientific models, leading to scientific ideas and, even paradigms...

If you're speculating about the scientific imagination being unable to expand forward without merging into the metaphysics of philosophy, then I find what you're saying interesting.

Now I can ask you what is the relationship between imagination and metaphysics?

If metaphysics is an essential component of imagination, irrespective of theme or topic, then philosophy, acting through the channel of imagination, holds ground with all other disciplines.

The pie-in-the-sky derogation of philosophy is twofold: it's a mockery of the perceived over-seriousness of philosophy; it's a veiled recognition of the imaginative power of philosophy.
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

Yet, for all intents and purposes, that is exactly what appears to be the case.Mww

We're not satisfied with appearances, and what lies beyond the imagination of protein-based sentience cannot appear dynamically to our imaginations. So, in the instance of an unlimited protein-based sentience, we're experiencing a bounded infinity. It's a case of unlimited content across limited extent. Beyond its limits, the human brain has no specific inkling of what lies therein, and through the lens of its imagination, unlimited extent as a practical experience is mere appearance.

Consider a sentience based on protein and also on material-x. Both platforms are bounded infinities. Their combination generates an infinity larger than its constituent infinities considered respectively. At this level of infinity, data processing per unit of time is a million times the max data processing rate of both protein-based processing and material-x based processing respectively.

At our level of infinity, we can speculate in general about how motion works at super-dense spacetimes featuring millions of spacial dimensions. The specifics of the empirical experience of this super-dense motion is beyond even our imaginations because we cannot process enough information -- not even across infinite time because rate is essential and that's not achievable via serial accretion -- to go there existentially.

You say I'm there now through my imagination. Okay. I'm there now through my imagination, and, curiously, a rock lying on the ground is here with us as human sentients at the level of rock-based imagination.

So, you win the argument, and we see that rock-based imagination makes that rock lying on the ground one of our sentient peers.

All of this reads like an argument reductio ad absurdum. Is it?
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

If the human can think whatever he wantsMww

My point is that the human can think what the brain has the capacity to think, and not beyond that point. That's a limit far short of being able to think whatever we wish to think. Consider that when we conceive of thinking whatever we wish to think, our ability to think out to this limit is limited in ways unknown to us, as you yourself acknowledge:
The brain informs of all our knowledge, but doesn’t give us even an inkling of the knowledge of how it informs of the knowledge we have.Mww

So, the scope of our imagination is limited, and moreover, we don't know all of the details of the limitations, and thus we're limited in our knowledge of what we need to circumvent, and how to do it.

Because we don’t know enough of how the brain works, by what warrant can we say we’ve over-reached the brain’s capacity for knowing things?Mww

We're over-reaching when we imagine a fleshy mass of connected hemispheres has a scope of imagination beyond what protein-based matter has the capacity to conceive.
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

In the following sense, yes. Philosophizing is a reflective, meta activity. The earth formed and out of the waters animals diversified, and human beings thought. Somewhere in there was a moment where philosophy was new. At that moment, there was the thing (earth, waters diversifying animals, etc), and now the meta thing held or dispersed by a human. Philosophizing is humans being meta with things.

Your philology and classification of philosophy show promise. I think you should continue as you've been going, with a mind towards detailed elaboration with maximum rigor.

Is see that higher-order thinking (meta activity) spiderwebs through all of your counter-examples. So, even when it ranges out from higher-order thinking, philosophy is still a mixed bag of grit and gaze.

...Philosophizing is a reflective, meta activity...

I wonder if you'e thinking philosophy is always an instance of Chinese boxes?
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

How would the scientist test the philosopher’s logically valid statements, the subject and predicate of which are merely abstract conceptions? At bottom would be Aristotle’s laws of thought, in which it is clear A = A would be impossible to test with deductive certainty.Mww

As the medium is limited, so is the meaning supported by that medium.

If abstract thought is connected to the brain, then the limitations inherent in the material_physical dimensions of the brain: cells, synapses, electric current, gravity etc. exert controlling limits on what the content of abstract thought can be. In turn, these same limitations exert controlling limits on what the content of judgments about abstract thought can be.

The human, whose thinking is bounded by a physical brain, is blind to those limitations of brain on content of mind, as the human gets their sense of what is real and possible from within the boundaries of those limitations as their thoughts and perceptions of reality. In addition, a serial blindness is human's inability to see what exists that lies beyond the cognitive range of brain-based consciousness.

To exalt the mind's perception of reality beyond limitations of the brain amounts to driving the express lane to fallacy without knowing it.
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

If science discovers a posteriori the facts of nature, then does it follow that science, being the source of empirical truth, equates itself with materialism?

No

Is every[any] category of science a type of materialism?

No

The scope of science includes more that nature?

The scope of nature includes more than material things and their attendant physics?

Does philosophy hold aloof from science within an academic fortress of abstract math and logic?

I don't understand this question.

As the medium is limited, so is the meaning supported by that medium. This is an argument for recognizing the unbreakable link connecting science, math and logic to the natural world. Abstract thought is part of the natural world because its medium is the brain.

I make this argument here because we're examining the difference between science and philosophy. Some argue the difference is centered in the difference between the material_physicality of empirical examination and verification and the supposed immateriality of abstract reasoning.

I argue for the vanishing point of difference between science and philosophy through the essential linkage connecting brain and mind.

I see the difference centered in the older generalism of philosophy and the newer specialization of science. The specialization of science post-European Renaissance creates an illusion of profound difference between the two.
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

Science is science of x.

Except philosophy, which is the science of science or the science of scientiIzing. So philosophy is inherently self-reflective taking as its subject, the subject.

Are you answering "yes" to the question:

Is every category of philosophy a type of metaphysics?
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

The philosopher doesn’t need a scientific consult if he is theorizing in, or merely speculating on, that which cannot at all be legislated by natural law. Or, in the interest of fairness, why would he?Mww

Consider the pertinence of the following: a philosopher arrives at some logically valid statements about the potential of the reasoning mind: it can work through unlimited higher orders of categorical thinking within a discipline. The conclusion is that human freedom is unlimited by the standard of higher orders of categorical thinking. However, neuroscience discovers through long-term testing that the human brain, after reaching higher order X of categorical thinking, cannot process the data transfer rate from short-term processing to full cognition beyond higher order X without experiencing fatally high-volume error rates. The first conclusion being that artificial intelligence must take over beyond order X of categorical thinking. The philosopher would not know this a priori. The second conclusion being that the landscape of categorical perception beyond order X is not a reality for humanity whereas it is for artificial intelligence. The philosopher would not know the limit of what can be humanly real by this standard a priori.
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

There is a huge gulf between physics and materialism. Physics describes how matter behaves; materialism is the desire to acquire wealth and comfort. How did isms get mixed up with science in the first place?

You refer to a frequent problem of language. Materialism within science circles means matter is the basis for all of existence; there is no immaterial realm. Materialism within social circles means, as you say, prioritizing the acquisition of wealth. Usually, the two senses can be kept distinct by using "materialism" for the scientific sense, and using "materialistic" for the social sense.
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

I do not think the complete scientific method can exist without philosophy. I do not think a completely philosophical exploration can be complete without science.

So, it appears that you, like me, see the two disciplines connected within a bi-conditional relationship.
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

I don't see how philosophers looking over scientists' shoulders does any good. The various sciences have their own procedures...

We're on the same page here. I smile upon scientists who do in-house philosophizing about the meaning of one type of procedure versus another type. However, as you say:

There are some philosophers who are versed in contemporary knowledge who might qualify as well.

So, it should be okay too if philosopher-specialists provide some of the thinking about proper scientific goals in general and likewise proper general scientific procedure.
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

…..no science is ever done purely a priori, and no philosophy is ever done purely a posteriori;Mww

Do you think it's also true when we switch the position of the two disciplines in the above statement?

…..philosophical truths are proven logically and are necessarily so, scientific truths are proven empirically and are contingently so;Mww

This statement is interesting in a suggestive way: empirical truth, logically speaking, examples provisional knowledge in reference to abstract logical statements. Does this imply abstract logical statements are idealizations?

…..no science is done that isn’t first a philosophical construct, from which follows….Mww

Here you show that scientific theorizing dovetails with philosophy: thinking in terms of correlation, logic and causation is always epistemological.

...a philosopher is not always, nor needs be, a scientist;Mww

I differ with you here. If a philosopher is not first a scientist, then they need to always maintain a direct line to someone who is. I think the relationship between scientific truth and philosophical truth is bi-conditional. They're always linked by a double-implication. I think you say as much with:

…..no science is done that isn’t first a philosophical constructMww

and with:

…..a scientist is always a philosopher...Mww

philosophy differs from science merely in the determination and application of rules.Mww

I think this difference, when the two disciplines dialog constructively, for my reasons above, shrinks to a near vanishing point. I suppose I'm saying science and philosophy are two sub-divisions, or specializations operating under one over-arching category.
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

In the modern era the philosophy of science is largely done by scientists who work on the cutting edge of science. Their speculations are the creative philosophical gems that propel discoveries.

There are some philosophers who are versed in contemporary knowledge who might qualify as well.

Yes. This activity needs to be occurring steadily, and it is. Complicated processes need regular oversight with regard to methodology. Maybe it's a stretch, but I think metaphysics as the grammar or rules of procedure offers suggestions as to how methodology might evolve.
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

Interesting elaboration of certain practices likely going on quietly within science circles. Thanks for turning on this light.
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

Over time the one diverged from the other according to modern usage of either terms, especially as the sciences became more specialized. Nonetheless, PhD still stands for Doctor of Philosophy.

Can the philosopher nowadays be taken seriously as a science generalist? This label is meant to parallel the general practitioner of medicine, a doctor who does not specialize.
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

The difference between philosophy and science is a philosophical difference

Some scientists are very firm on a big difference between the two fields: Richard Feynmann. Must they wax philosophical when they describe the difference?

The inability to make that distinction is one of the main causes of scientism.

Have philosophers established talking points explaining why science should not be privileged above philosophy?

Philosophy is more concerned with qualitative questions and with question of meaning.

Do you deem these reasons for classifying philosophy within the humanities?
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

Philosophy of science does not govern scientific practice.

If philosophy of science has no practical application, what value do philosophers find within it?
• What's the Difference between Philosophy and Science?

Is every category of science a type of physics?

This is how I first thought to word my question.

If there's only a narrow separation between materialism and physics, does this suggest a reason why philosophy seeks its playing field upon the platform of subjectivity?
• The First Concept

But this thread is not about First Causes, or Final Effects. It's about the First Concept : the original light bulb in the chain of mindless material evolution. Do you have any ideas about when, where, & how that Initial Inkling emerged from Material Reality?

If the underlined above are your essential focal points for this conversation, I'm struggling to see why it isn't chiefly a scientific inquiry within evolutionary biology rather than a philosophical inquiry within theory of consciousness.

Are you not examining emergence of mind from matter? Is not this the focus as opposed to examining the structure and functioning of cognition once emergent?

If you're seeking after an argument that labels such and such content as the earliest thinking, isn't it likely you'll get an argument for concepts of purposeful behavior towards survival? Isn't it likely you'll get claims about earliest thinking based on observation of apparent cause-and-effect relationships?

Isn't it possible you'll get arguments underscoring the essential nature of cause-and-effect thinking and how it's supported by something more reliable than intuition? For example, is math more verifiably true in the world than intuition? Well, math equations tell us how input values are changed by logical operators. An equation is language that details a cause and effect relationship. If you think this is unreliable intuition floating about in the mist, I conclude your heart is in your mouth every time you drive across a suspension bridge. Is it the case, instead, that you refuse to drive across suspension bridges?
• The First Concept

I think language can at best only deal with empirical experience - what other experience would there be? The trouble comes about when empirical experience is taken for the world itself as it is in itself.

You say language reaches its limit dealing with empirical experience. Can you elaborate on "dealing with"? For example, "Dealing with" means perceives and understands as if through a glass darkly.

I've been forming the impression you see clearly two distinct experiences, one linguistic, the other hands-on_material.

I'm of the mind that there are no paradoxes in the world, only in descriptions of the world.

You think paradoxes logical things categorically apart from hands-on_material things?

You think paradoxes the products of narratives made incoherent due to missing pieces? Do you have any ready-to-hand examples?
• The First Concept

What do I infer? That lacking a lot of preliminary groundwork, mostly in establishing working definitions - though they be provisional and subject to change... the question remains a non-sense question...an attempt to make sense where there is no sense to be made.

Are you steeped in linguistic philosophy?

Temporality is implied in "first."... But what does modern physics say? For events space-like related which came first depends on who you ask - and notions of entanglement make that even more difficult to understand.

Do you think language is inherently limited in its ability to characterize empirical experience truthfully and completely, or do you think language has innate potential to do this, but your endorsement of this characterization comes with the proviso that, up front, tremendous work over eons is necessary?

...it appears the language yields paradox. The world? No apparent paradox, but also no easy understanding.

Do you think paradox exists only within language? I ask bearing in mind superposition at the quantum scale.
• The First Concept

[Georg ?] Cantor's paradox (about set theory) arises out of descriptive language thought entirely sound but found to be flawed, the remedy being to fix - qualify - the language. A set of all sets seems at first reasonable; it turns out not to be.

I'm interested in learning how and why "A set of all sets" is not reasonable. Are you referring to the ZFC restriction of the comprehension axiom and how they avoid Russell's Paradox and fixed Frege's math set theory premises? Can you pass along citations to this literature?

The "paradox" of first beginnings is an applying of language to the world. The world being neither obliged to cooperate with nor obey language, paradox in this case nature's way of saying "Dead-end. Turn about and go another way."

When you say "paradox in this case nature's way of saying "Dead-end. Turn about and go another way,"are you invoking the principle of non-contradiction?
• The First Concept

Let me correct myself. When I posed my question to you and tim wood, I was understanding tim wood to be questioning generally about the relationship between words -- as in propositions -- and empirical experience. Now I see -- I think -- that tim wood is questioning specifically about a relationship between the proposition: "There is a first cause." and empirical experience.

This latter interpretation of tim wood's meaning has him saying of the proposition: "It's a false claim. There are no first causes.

Now, let me correct my attempted correction. I see in tim woods' response above that, indeed, he has clarified his meaning. So, yes, my first interpretation is correct after all. He is questioning the relationship between words and empirical experience.

I find much in his clarification agreeable. So, I find your endorsement of tim woods' first post understandable and reasonable.
• The First Concept

...supposing that an(y) artifact of language...has anything to do with physical reality. Recognize that it doesn't and the problem of reconciling irreconcilables evaporates.

So, why are you two posting here? I don't suppose you refute the notion written narratives have no relationship to material things. Do you?

180 Proof, if you respond, I expect you to nuance away from the simple premise implied by my question.
• The First Concept

"What could we call it" refers to the first cause?

Gnomon is asking what title should be affixed to this conversation.
• A first cause is logically necessary

...leaving the Original Cause of expansion as an open question for feckless philosophers to waste spare-time on.

Did you commit a typo? Perhaps you were intending to write: space-time?

I'm proposing a new thread with similar implications but different presumptions : a First Cause implies a Final Cause, produced by the operations of an Efficient Cause, working in the medium of a Material Cause. What could we call it?

And now, before the next round of beer and peanuts, a title pitch from the chronically gassy, Dept. of Crabby Chyrons : How Set Theory Got Started: A Cosmic Mystery.

In our premiere episode, thrill to the edge of your seat watching Charger, a supremely irreverent electron with velocity learn to do the secret handshake with Ghost Universe.
• A first cause is logically necessary

Also a more interesting an viable discussion in my mind is Bob Ross's points.

I acknowledge that of the two of us, Bob Ross has a deeper grounding within sentential logic.

You've been extraordinarily generous with your time, energy, and patience in the interest of the thoroughness of our dialogue. Your exertions herein have afforded me an ample supply of time and opportunity to practice and develop both my debate strategy and my execution.

I'm now going to bow out from our dialogue.

• A first cause is logically necessary

It seems like you are trying to argue that since the set of all causes intersection with the null set would result in the null set, that something not having a cause is impossible. The problem with such an argument is twofold: firstly, that something that has no cause would not be a member of the set of all causes NOR a member of the null set and, secondly, the intersection of two sets equaling the null set just means that it has no communal members (which doesn't itself entail that it is impossible for there to be a member of either of the sets).*

I’m arguing that nothingness cannot support an intersection with somethingness. I’m choosing my words carefully because I’m not saying nothingness can or cannot cause somethingness. I know first cause is uncaused. However, first cause incepting in nothingness is, as I say, a somethingness nothingness cannot support.

I support this claim by saying all existing things are networked. Therefore, no existing thing exists in pure isolation from other existing things, and this pure isolation is the implication of first cause as it is defined.

*I made "either" above bold because, in the case of a set with an element being disjoint with the null set, and that disjunction evaluating to a null set, I don't see how the null set (of the disjunction) can contain an element (not common to the other set) since that contradicts the definition of a null set as a set with no elements.

Okay. (Aside from the asterisk immediately above) everything is clear up to this point. Let me run by you one additional consideration: The intersection of disjunct sets is supposed by me to show that the null set is disjunct with every set except itself. So, even if the other set contains a member, its disjunction with the null set evaluating to a null set resultant shows that an intersection of nothing to something always results in nothing.**

A simpler notation for this argument says: 0(X)=0.

I brought up the fact the null set is a subset of every set to show -- in the interest of thoroughness -- that when we consider the null set conjunct with every set because of the null set being a universal subset, it's still a conjunction of nothingness with nothingness.

**This is presumably a directional truth because the reverse: something-to-nothing is apparently possible, although a sound argument that something never reduces to nothing is perhaps possible.
• A first cause is logically necessary

Hello Bob Ross,

I come to you asking a favor. Can you examine my argument below and tell me if it contains any fatal flaws?

Consider: ∅={ }; this is the empty set. So, if ∅={ } = nothingness and (1) = first cause, then they are disjoint sets, meaning they have no common members. So, the intersection of
∅={ } and (1) takes us right back to ∅={ }.

The statement makes an explicit point: nothing intersecting causally with something always results in nothing. So, no something-from-nothing. There's only nothing from nothing. You [Philosophim] have argued that nothingness in your argument is not a thing. With nothingness as a thing, say, a thing represented by zero, nothingness-as-a-representable-nothing can only interact causally with something along the lines of (0)X=0.

One wants to claim the null set is disjoint with all other sets. Nevertheless, since the null set is a subset of all sets – including the universal set – then the null set is not disjoint from itself as a subset of any other set. But this simply means the nothingness of the null set is of one piece with the nothingness of its own nothingness as the subset of all other sets. So, again, the null set is disjoint with any somethingness in all other sets. So, again, no somethingness-from-nothingness.
• A first cause is logically necessary

Statistical probability is a math-based science. Calculating probabilities is not educated guesswork. Either the math is correct or it isn't.

Probability is absolutely educated guesswork Ucarr. No one knows what card will be drawn next. Its an educated inference about the future. It might take 49 card draws before we see our first jack despite the odds being 4/52.

When a probability is calculated, either the computed probability is right or wrong. So, there's no guesswork involved in computing a probability equation. That the range is what is calculated is not uncertain. When you list 4/52 as a ratio expressing the probability of drawing a certain kind of card within a range of possible draws, there's nothing uncertain about the correctness of this computed ratio. What's uncertain is which particular member of the set computed by the ratio will be chosen and where within the range of possibilities. So, yes. We have to guess what and when one of the four possibilities will be chosen, but that there are four possibilities to be possibly chosen over the specified range is certain. If this weren't so, you wouldn't be quoting the odds as "4/52."

"It might take 49 card draws before we see our first jack despite the odds being 4/52."

The range is from 1 through 49 possible draws. What's uncertain is the exact number of draws within the specified range. The science of probabilities concerns itself with telling you what the range will be. By definition, a range of probabilities is about the range of probabilities, not about exactly when a member will be chosen.

Don't imagine the casinos in Vegas depend on educated guesswork for their profits.

Yes, they do. The casino's only survive because the long term odds balance out to their predicted outcomes. There are several points in games where a person cleans out the house. But those points typically don't happen long often enough and often enough to override the losses.

Casinos don't run on educated guesswork. Educated guesswork involves knowledge pertinent to outcomes, but probability, being a science, follows strict rules that govern computations. Do you think pollsters get paid to do educated guesswork about possible outcomes of elections? When tv stations call election results before all of the ballots are tallied, do you think that's educated guesswork?

Your explanation supports my claim (this is an indication we're saying the same thing in different words). In your explanation, you describe what the casinos know. What they know are the odds. Knowing the odds is not educated guesswork. Why do you think successful gamblers -- casinos being the best example -- always know the odds? Also, at a 15% to 30% profit margin, do you think casinos are just getting by?

The more constraints you have, the more deterministic it becomes and the number of possibilities approach zero.

This is a simplification of nature. Regarding a higher number of constraints in one situation compared to the number in another situation, the total level of constraint varies complexly rather than simply because of the possibility of constraints upon constraints.

Removing all constraints reveals all possibilities and is the negation of determinism. So no, this does not approach a probability of 0.

Removing constraints in relation to determinism is governed bi-directionally. At the top end of the continuum of determinism, removal of constraints increases possibilities up to a point, and then the effect reverses if there isn't a certain amount of checking constraints maintained at the bottom end of the continuum of determinism.

The process of removal of constraints can't go all the way to a total removal of constraints because that would mean total removal of intelligibility. You won't have any real and useful things if all constraints are removed because real and useful things -- being the products of constraints -- necessarily introduce intelligibility into a medium. Any medium populated by intelligible things has necessary constraints upon both the parameters of the medium itself as well as upon the intelligible things populating the medium. Without this no form, no content, no consciousness perceiving form and content. This is another way of arguing against the possibility of nothingness* and true randomness.

*Nothingness is a thing. It's not possible to reason with unthingly nothingness because its not possible for existence to transcend itself.

It [true randomness] doesn't have to happen at any time.

Can it ever happen? If true randomness exists empirically, the fact of its existence contradicts the definition of its existence. Any type of existing thing has a measure of determinism attached to it as a thing in itself. It would not be intelligible were this not the case. Kant might be right that we can't know a thing in itself, but I think he's only right up to a point. By his narrative, we can know a thing in itself as a thing that can't be known, otherwise what is he talking about?

If you have zero dollars Ucarr, money owned by you does not exist.

Incorrect. Money owned by me in this situation can be represented by the number zero. So, I own money at volume zero. Don't confuse zero with nothing. Zero represents a specific volume of something, thus the representative and the thing represented are alike not nothing. Also, consider: $0.10 compared with$.010. Ten cents is ten times greater than one cent, a big difference. By changing the position of the zero in relation to the decimal point, the value decreased by a factor of 10. That zero effects that change is evidence that representation of nothing and being nothing are two different things.

Consider: ∅={ }; this is the empty set. So, if ∅={ } = nothingness and (1) = first cause, then they are disjoint sets, meaning they have no common members. So, the intersection of ∅={ } and (1) takes us right back to ∅={ }.

I don't see the point. I'm not using an empty set nor multiplying by zero.

The statement makes an explicit point: nothing interacting with something always results in nothing. So, no something-from-nothing. There's only nothing from nothing. You've argued that nothing in your argument is not a thing. With nothing as a thing, say, a thing represented by zero, nothing-as-a-representable-nothing can interact with something along the lines of (0)X=0. Nothing that is not a thing cannot be discussed without contradiction.

Philosophim's Main Premise -- Every causal chain inevitably arrives at a first cause.

This being your main premise, a claim that inhabits the domain of set theory, everything you write in the conversation -- in order to be pertinent -- should hold reference to set theory. Therefore, I'm advancing a pertinent argument in this conversation whenever I employ set theory logic within my arguments.

Here is an argument that implies your pure randomness is an idealization. If, as I believe, pure randomness is the absolute value of disorder, then it's not found in nature.

Pure randomness has nothing to do with 'the value of disorder' whatever that is.

Firstly, how can you make a declaration of fact about something you know nothing about?

You keep confusing the point that true randomness comes from the result of a first cause being necessarily true.

Isn't this what you believe? You're the one propounding first cause from nothing.

If you want to counter the idea of true randomness, you need to attack what proves it to be true, not the concept of true randomness itself.

You keep telling me how to manage my argumentation. Are you trying to control my narrative? When I couple this behavior with you repeatedly telling me not to draw my own inferences from what you write, and declaring that, instead, I should ask for your explanations of your meanings, I conclude that, firstly, you're trying to focus my attention on your intended meanings as distinguished from what you write and, secondly, that you have scant respect for the independence of my thinking. I'm inclined to think you are a bully. This isn't ad hominem; it's a reasoned argument drawn from the evidence cited here.

If you want to counter the idea of true randomness, you need to attack what proves it to be true, not the concept of true randomness itself.

Either point of attack is sound.

You can walk into an empty room. You can't walk into a non-existent room.

This is poor language use, not a proof.

This is an argument. It's your job to disprove it.

I can walk into a vacuum sealed room right? Or a room empty of air? Non-existence as a concept is quite viable Ucarr.

In making your sequence of argumentative statements, you leave out one crucial statement: I can walk into a non-existent room. Why do you leave out this statement?

Non-existence as a concept is quite viable Ucarr. Are you sure the concept of infinity is?

Firstly, infinite causal chains are central to your premise. Is this an admission your premise is therefore flawed? Secondly, I'd like to see you argue against the logical merit of infinity as a concept, thereby simultaneously arguing against the logical merit of your premise.

Just above you agreed thoughts are things. Still earlier, you agreed the presence of a thing changes what it observes, so your thoughts observing true randomness change it.

My thoughts on true randomness change true randomness? How? How does my thinking about an atom incepting randomly change true randomness?

Your thoughts are organized. The content of your thoughts are likewise organized. "True randomness" within your reasoning thoughts is light years removed from what you intend it to mean. Organization and disorder always fight on contact. Be thankful that organization, in your case, continues to win. Do you imagine you could reason with true randomness in an argument if your mind was randomized?

Every infinite causal chain inevitably traces back to its first cause. If it does it's not infinite because infinity never begins. If it doesn't, it's not a causal chain because every causal chain has a first cause.

You are once again confusing the infinite causality within the universe with the causal chain of that universe. There is still the question in the chain, "What caused that infinite universe to exist?" Either something caused the infinite universe to exist, or it didn't right?

I've been arguing an infinite series doesn't arrive anywhere specific. That means the infinite series does not arrive at its limit, the universe. So that, in turn, means no final position along the infinite series has been reached, thus triggering the encounter with its first causation. Let's pretend for the moment it does reach its discrete end. When you reason that: There is still the question in the chain, "What caused that infinite universe to exist?" you uncouple your infinite series from its first cause. This uncoupling destroys your premise: Every causal chain inevitably arrives at its first cause. You're saying, instead, when the sequence of the chain is fully encompassed, there's still something beyond it. So, the total infinite chain has not and cannot arrive at its first cause. If it could, the question wouldn't remain.

Your premise, along this line of examination, is fundamentally flawed because you configure it with an organization that necessitates a separation of first cause from its causations. You've committed yourself to this design and you've memorialized this commitment in the written record of this
conversation:

The critical question pertinent to our debate is whether or not you can talk logically about the before or after of a bounded infinity. When talking logically about the start of a chain of causality, you’re talking about the beginning of a continuity. That’s talking about the extent of a series. Since the infinite number of elements populating the series precludes you from ascertaining a start point, you can’t claim logically that before the start point there were such and such necessary conditions because you cannot specify a start point.

Your mistake is that you are looking inside the set for a start point. The start point is not inside the set. It is the question of what caused the entire set.

When you address the problem of an infinite series having neither a beginning nor an ending, you destroy your premise by negating "A chain of causation inevitably arriving at a start point." The uncoupling of first cause from it chain of causations causes this negation.

You have also memorialized another closely related problem within the conversation:

Given a first cause, is it correct to say the next thing following the first cause -- the first thing caused by the first cause -- appears as the first causation? Subsequent links in the causal chain are, likewise, causations?

Seems good to me. This is definitely clear in a finitely regressive universe. In the case of the formula of an infinitely regressive universe, because there is infinite time and we are capturing all possible causations within infinite time, there is no 'first causation."

If there's no first causation, how does the causal chain begin?

If the causal chain doesn’t progress sequentially, meaning the infinite causal chain is always considered as a whole, then it’s not a causal chain, it’s a unified set with no first cause. This isn’t causation; it’s creation.
I'm assuming an infinitely existing universe makes sense and is possible. If you agree, then the equation makes perfect sense.

I agree. An eternal universe makes sense. One of it's salient attributes is the absence of a beginning. If you try to say an eternal universe is itself a first cause, you're positing it in its causal role as the outer parentheses set with itself as the inner parentheses set, but you're prohibited from doing so by the rule of set theory that says a set cannot be a member of itself.

Correct. But I'm not doing that because there's another question on the causal chain. "What caused the infinite universe to exist?"

If that question pertains to something that's a part of the causal chain, then you've got a set being a member of itself. If the question does not pertain to something that's a part of the causal chain, and thus the universe is not part of the causal chain, then with an infinite causal chain you have the incoherence problem because infinite series have no beginnings or endings.

Let me repeat a second time what I repeated above:
Infinity is not a discrete number. It therefore cannot be precisely situated on the number line. It therefore cannot be precisely sequenced in a series populated with numbers. For these reasons, infinite values cannot be computed directly.

Ok, and I'm going to repeat that this is irrelevant to the question, "What caused the infinite universe to exist?"

It's not irrelevant because:

The set is only meant as a way to capture all of the causality within an infinite universe. Set of X = [all causality within an infinite universe]. The equation was just a way to represent it over time, which is perfectly viable if you believe that infinity exists.

Aside -- Now we see why you keep trying to focus my attention on what you intend to mean rather than on what you write.

As you admit above: 2T+infinity=Y says in writing that your math description of an infinite causal chain arriving at a first cause happens in terms of an infinite series for which this can't happen. Believe what I intend, not what I write.

If an infinite universe exists, at any time T does there exist an infinite amount of prior causality? Its a clear yes or no question. If you answer yes, then my equation is fine. if you answer no, then my equation is not fine, but then again, we also just demonstrated an infinite universe is illogical and can't be put on the number line.

No. An eternal universe is uncaused. Your equation fails, but the concept of an eternal universe does not fail alongside of it. In our conversation, you, not I, have been writing equations with infinity as an input value. I'm not trying to put an eternal universe on the number line with an equation that computes an infinite value. The standard of failure you cite is your equations; I have no involvement with your equations. I have no proof the universe is eternal, and you offer no proof its illogical.

How does this relate to our conversation on probability being a set of restrictions that enable us to reasonably guess at a future?

My defense only addresses your accusation I dragged in QM randomly. No, QM uncertainty -- like the concept of randomness -- relates to uncertainty.

Second, the uncertainty principle is all based off of our measuring tools being too strong.The way we measure things is by bouncing smaller particles off of larger things. Usually the particles are small enough that the bounce does not impact its location or velocity. But in the quantum world, what we bounce off of the things we are measuring affects the outcome. We're measuring the smallest things with some of the smallest things, not smaller things.

This may be a language issue, so I'll point out the definitions.

Inaccurate - Measurements which are unreliable.
Reliable - Measurements which are consistent
Measurements can be accurate despite impacting the target. For example, if I hit a cue ball into a billiard ball with X force, y spin, at Z angle, the ball will billiard ball will reliably result in a set velocity in w direction. Measurements that impact other things are not inaccurate. The fact that the cue ball changes the billiard balls velocity does not mean our measure is inaccurate.

An example of an inaccurate measurement would be a stretchable ruler that constantly fluctuates in size and inches width. Or trying to measure something at a distance by spacing your thumb through the air without precision. QM measurements are not inaccurate, they just affect what is being measured because the size of our measuring tool cannot help but affect the thing being measured.

All of the above is irrelevant to the issue in dispute: whether or not you erroneously identified The Uncertainty Principle as being a measurement problem. Given the evidence of what you wrote, as quoted above, there can be no doubt of it.

Perhaps now -- given the similarity of uncertainty and randomness -- you can see my reference to QM is not random.
— ucarr

Perhaps now you can see that your reference to QM does not solve the question, nor does covering this subject do anything for your case.

You're spinning away from the issue to separate issues.

I could show the pertinence of QM within this context, but I acknowledge that that pertinence introduces narratives too far afield from your points.

That's conceding the point then.

No. If you're familiar with Venn Diagrams, then you know intersecting sets with members in common as well as non-common members is not an example of a random collision of wholly unrelated things.

Regarding #1 -- My direct attack -- were that my purpose herein -- would be an attempt to show that first cause doesn't exist. I think 180 Proof is doing a successful job in managing that objective.

Then you have not adequately understood his points or read my counters.

Neither I, nor 180 Proof, are so far persuaded by your logic. Also, neither I, nor 180 Proof are persuaded by your claim you and he are really on the same page.

I know you're not persuaded by my logic and I, likewise, am not persuaded by yours.

I hope you don't feel obligated to refute my arguments here.

Perhaps you're willing to make a closing comment on our dialogue.

If you are, I'll go first with mine and then let you have the last word.
• A first cause is logically necessary

Did you mean my reference to Cantor? If so, what is your point? I don't believe any of the equations I used in my example resolve to undefined.

My point is that an equation that computes to either infinity or undefined does not represent: "Every causal chain inevitably arrives at a first cause."

No, you're ignoring the point. I'm simply using the equation to represent a set. If the universe has existed for an infinite amount of time, will there always be infinite prior causes? Yes. At every point T, will there be additional causes? Yes.

You're saying this while believing an eternal universe with infinite prior causes inevitably arrives at a first cause with nothing prior to it?

If you agree to this, then you agree to the equation. If the form of the equation bothers you, turn it into an array set of values where t is the index. Its the same thing.

With t as the index, does the index extend to infinity?

I'm assuming an infinitely existing universe makes sense and is possible. If you agree, then the equation makes perfect sense.

I agree. An eternal universe makes sense. One of it's salient attributes is the absence of a beginning. If you try to say an eternal universe is itself a first cause, you're positing it in its causal role as the outer parentheses set with itself as the inner parentheses set, but you're prohibited from doing so by the rule of set theory that says a set cannot be a member of itself.

And Ucarr, the logic and math are all ways to break down the argument into a way you can see more clearly. The argument hasn't changed

Nor has its faulty logical support.

This is not an argument Ucarr. If you're just going to give opinions, then my argument stands as logical.

Have you forgotten the assessments repeated below, or do you deny they're logical assessments of your logical support for you premise?

Infinity is not a discrete number. It therefore cannot be precisely situated on the number line. It therefore cannot be precisely sequenced in a series populated with numbers. For these reasons, infinite values cannot be computed directly.

The Crux: QM Governs Cosmology – an infinite causal chain cannot have a precise first cause because it amounts to putting the whole number line – infinite in volume – within itself. Infinite values can be bounded (as argued above) but they cannot be definitively sequenced.

Given these limitations, the attempt to sequence an infinite value amounts to claiming a given thing is greater than itself; this irrational claim holds moot sway within QM, as in the instance of superposition; prior to measurement, the cat is neither dead or alive.

My citation is not in reference to your true randomness narrative. It refers to placing an irrational number onto the number line without calculating in terms of limits. Your mistake entails assuming that because you see no connection between our debate and QM, therefore I must be randomly throwing it into the mix.

If its not in reference to true randomness, I don't see the point then.

Let me repeat a second time what I repeated above:
Infinity is not a discrete number. It therefore cannot be precisely situated on the number line. It therefore cannot be precisely sequenced in a series populated with numbers. For these reasons, infinite values cannot be computed directly.

My reference to QM, therefore, is, in turn, a reference to a first cousin of randomness, quantum certainty. Since elementary particles are also waveforms, and since waveforms and their uncertainties are related to randomness, QM, which deals with these uncertainties, might also be speculated to deal with randomness, this especially given the relationship between random quantum fluctuations and the singularity.

I never said our measurements were uncertain or inaccurate. I stated our measurements affect the outcome.

Second, the uncertainty principle is all based off of our measuring tools being too strong. The way we measure things is by bouncing smaller particles off of larger things. Usually the particles are small enough that the bounce does not impact its location or velocity. But in the quantum world, what we bounce off of the things we are measuring affects the outcome. We're measuring the smallest things with some of the smallest things, not smaller things.

From the evidence above, it's clear to me you're talking about gross measurement tools being grossly inaccurate, and moreover, you're claiming The Uncertainty Principle is all about that measurement inaccuracy. If you meant something else, you failed to use the correct words.

In fact, uncertainty is an inherent aspect of anything with wave-like behavior.

Agreed.

Perhaps now -- given the similarity of uncertainty and randomness -- you can see my reference to QM is not random.

This is not a debate about QM unless you can demonstrate why its pertinent to the above two points.

I could show the pertinence of QM within this context, but I acknowledge that that pertinence introduces narratives too far afield from your points.

You need to logically demonstrate two things:
1. Why a first cause is not necessary.
2. Why a first cause would not be completely random.

Regarding #1 -- My direct attack -- were that my purpose herein -- would be an attempt to show that first cause doesn't exist. I think @180 Proof is doing a successful job in managing that objective.

I'm not directly attacking "first cause is logically necessary." Perhaps it is. This time round, I'm merely trying to set a standard of proof for the claim by examining your logical support in the form of equations. As you know, I deem your current equations a failure.

Regarding #2 -- I'm already on the job of refuting this claim. Below is a copy of my next-to-last posting to this conversation.

Consider: ∅={ }; this is the empty set. So, if ∅={ } = nothingness and (1) = first cause, then they are disjoint sets, meaning they have no common members. So, the intersection of ∅={ } and (1) takes us right back to ∅={ }. This is like multiplying any positive number by 0. The result is 0. Also, disjoint sets means first cause and its causations are separated; this is self-contradiction.

This is another refutation of something-from-nothing. As you see above, when nothing has nothing in common with something, nothing persists.
• A first cause is logically necessary

Probability is a an educated guess at what will likely happen based on deterministic rules that we know.

Statistical probability is a math-based science. Calculating probabilities is not educated guesswork. Either the math is correct or it isn't. Uncertainty due to a range of possible outcomes -- soft constraint -- is completely scientific. Don't imagine the casinos in Vegas depend on educated guesswork for their profits.

Probability cannot be cancelled. If we have randomly shuffle some cards and pull a card, its a 4/52 chance its a jack.

Mathematics governs how many ways 52 cards can be shuffled. The number is astronomical, but its not vague.

As you say with 4/52, there's a calculated chance governing possible outcomes. No guesswork.

My thought experiment on true randomness is not an idealization, its a correctly concluded conclusion. That which is not caused by something else, has no constraints, and thus prior to its inception could not be predicted.

If you dial down determinism and probability to zero, you are left with neither form nor content. One might refer to any remainder, if such exists, as undefined. The intelligibility of form and content won't allow your pure randomness to come on stage. Likewise your mind -- the epitome of compact, efficient form and content -- won't allow you to think your way into pure randomness, except paradoxically.

You're correct about rejoicing with Bob Ross over his understanding first cause cannot be verified empirically. Were that the case, with pure randomness extant empirically, you and Bob Ross wouldn't exist. Non-existence cannot contemplate the nature of itself, but existence can and does even to the point of thought experiments that negate it.

There is zero contradiction in stating that nothing is possible.

And "This sentence is false."

Is zero impossible or a contradiction

Neither. Zero is a number. It holds a place on the number line between -1 and 1. Don't confuse it with non-existence.

Consider: ∅={ }; this is the empty set. So, if ∅={ } = nothingness and (1) = first cause, then they are disjoint sets, meaning they have no common members. So, the intersection of ∅={ } and (1) takes us right back to ∅={ }. This is like multiplying any positive number by 0. The result is 0. Also, disjoint sets means first cause and its causations are separated; this is self-contradiction.

This is another refutation of something-from-nothing. As you see above, when nothing has nothing in common with something, nothing persists.

Measuring Entropy

Why can't we measure entropy?

In simple words, entropy is a measure of the disorder of the system. No one can find the absolute value of disorder. But, the change in disorder can be measured. For example, the water molecules in ice are more ordered than in water; and the water molecules in water are more ordered than in vapor phase.

Here is an argument that implies your pure randomness is an idealization. If, as I believe, pure randomness is the absolute value of disorder, then it's not found in nature.

A belief that you cannot have a state of toral non-organization does not counter why its been concluded to necessarily exist.

My belief is based upon my attack upon: 2T+∞=Y.

I'm pretty sure that when you go into space, there's a whole lot of nothing.

Firstly, space is not empty; it's a thing. That's why is warps under the influence of massive objects, like the earth. Also, don't confuse emptiness with non-existence. You can walk into an empty room. You can't walk into a non-existent room.

In a complicated way, thoughts are things.

True. But in this case the thought is a representation, not actual randomness itself.

Representations are highly ordered things.

ust as you can't observe an elementary particle without changing it, you can't observe true randomness through a thought experiment without changing it.

Just above you agreed thoughts are things. Still earlier, you agreed the presence of a thing changes what it observes, so your thoughts observing true randomness change it.

As I recall, y is an infinite value, and thus it has no discretely specifiable position on the number line; it's unlimited volume over limited extent between limits. It never arrives at a start point (or an end point).

Correct. I've never claimed it does. That changes nothing of what stated.

Every infinite causal chain inevitably traces back to its first cause. If it does it's not infinite because infinity never begins. If it doesn't, it's not a causal chain because every causal chain has a first cause.
• A first cause is logically necessary

Can you show me one equation in your reference that doesn't compute to infinity? Yes, you can. There's one equation that computes to "undefined."

Which one?

It's your citation. Find it yourself.

Can you cite an equation with infinity as an input value that computes to a well-defined discrete position on the number line? It needs to be a number neither irrational nor approximate.

Its logic.

No. Can you cite a math equation that... (see the underlined above)

Here's a question I think unaddressed and important that arises: With the exception of first causes, is it true that -- within the everyday world of things material and otherwise -- all things are part of a causal chain that inevitably arrives at a first cause?

Yes. To not be would be complete and utter chaos that could never be understood, codified, or made into any sort of law.

Imagine that each causation within a causal chain -- because of the fact of its existence -- generates a prior (or subsequent) causation. How does the chain of causation reach the point of no prior (or subsequent) causation?
— ucarr

That's the same thing as 2T + infinity = y

So we have the equation 2T + infinity = Y representing an infinite chain of causation. Per your premise, this infinite causal chain has a first cause.

Computing with Infinity

Some Special Properties:

If x is any integer, then;

x + ∞ = ∞

So, using your math equation (it's not a symbolic logic statement), with T = 1, we get,
2+∞=∞

This equation, which computes to infinity, fails to terminate at position one, a clear and discrete position on the number line. You won't find infinity occupying a clear and discrete position on the number line. Your equation, being the logical representation of an infinite causal chain with a first cause, and moreover being the engine of your thought experiment, by failing in its representation, dooms your effort to logically support your thought experiment.

And Ucarr, the logic and math are all ways to break down the argument into a way you can see more clearly. The argument hasn't changed.

Nor has its faulty logical support.

In the link to Cantor's differing levels of infinite series, can you cite a passage addressing infinity conceptualized as an infinite series with a discrete starting point?

Again, you're looking in the wrong place. Look at the logic above.

All I see in the citation to Cantor is math irrelevant to my math claim your equation is a failure.

First, we discussed earlier how true randomness cannot be influenced by anything else. So QM is useless.

My citation is not in reference to your true randomness narrative. It refers to placing an irrational number onto the number line without calculating in terms of limits. Your mistake entails assuming that because you see no connection between our debate and QM, therefore I must be randomly throwing it into the mix.

the uncertainty principle is all based off of our measuring tools being too strong.

Incorrect. Here's a quote from the link below: A common misconception about the uncertainty principle in quantum physics is that it implies our measurements are uncertain or inaccurate. In fact, uncertainty is an inherent aspect of anything with wave-like behavior.

Heisenberg Uncertainty _CalTech

Material things are connected, thus we can't always make complete measurements locally, as in the case of complementary attributes such as position and speed when distributed in waveform. Moreover, these effects are in play at the human scale of experience, but they're too minute to be detected by our senses.

So in the case of the cat, its not that the cat is both alive and dead before we measure it.

It is the case the cat is both alive and dead before measurement. Denying this means denying superposition. Is that what you're doing?
• A first cause is logically necessary

Lets break this down again. Probability as we know it is built off of constraints. These constraints are our capability to measure or observe aspects that would be needed for precise calculation. Thus shuffling cards that we cannot see.

Are you talking about constraints that empower precision of measurement: "our capability to measure or observe," or constraints that limit precision of measurement: "shuffling cards that we cannot see"?

There is no true randomness in shuffling

This puts me in mind of a generalization: There is no true randomness in practice, i.e., in our phenomenal world. In other words, material things, acting through their presence, always insert a measure of determinism regarding outcomes. This is so because material things have entropy attached to themselves. Consequently, the entropy of a material thing diminishes the purity of possible outcomes, i.e., true randomness. So, in our phenomenal world, material outcomes of material things in motion always have a measure of determinism attached. Probability cannot be cancelled in the real world. Therefore, your thought experiment with true randomness is an idealization.

The other constraint we consider are the rules involved. A die bounces because of things like mass and gravity. There are tangible things we can measure combined with things that we cannot measure that allow us to make a probability, or educated guess at a constrained outcome.

Yes. This is the real world.

True randomness has no constraints. Its not that there isn't something that we can observe or measure, its that there is nothing there to measure at all. Whenever an outcome happens, there was nothing that had to be for it to happen. There was nothing to limit what would be, and nothing to push what would be.

There is no true randomness outside of a thought experiment.

There is no nothingness outside of its paradoxical presence within a thought experiment. The metaphysical binary of existence confines us to existence via self-contradiction. We cannot exit ourselves from existence, not even via our thought experiments. Your thought experiment re: nothingness is thoroughly embedded within existence. If it weren't, it wouldn't be possible for you to entertain yourself with the thought of it. At no time are you making contact with nothingness, so your arguments from a supposed but fictional nothingness are paradoxical non-starters.

Entropy is just the separation of matter and energy from a higher state to a lower state over time. This has nothing to do with true randomness.

If by higher state you mean level of organization of material things into functional systems, then explain why level of organization has nothing to do with its opposite: no organization, i.e., randomness?

Is probability only possible in the absence of true randomness?

Based on how I've defined probability, what do you think?

I think the answer is "yes." I also think it not possible to have a state of total non-organization. So, no true randomness. If no true randomness, then no general anything-is-possible.

True randomness is not constrained. Something which can be constrained has laws, and is therefore not truly random. There is nothing to constrain or influence Ucarr. You keep seeing it as a 'thing'. It is a logical concept.

In a complicated way, thoughts are things.

From Heisenberg we have reason to believe we can't know every essential attribute of a thing simultaneously.

This is only because our measurement impacts the results. The QM level is so small that anything we bounce off of it to detect it is going to alter its velocity. You can get the same effect by bouncing a baseball off of a softball. This has nothing to do with true randomness.

True randomness breaks apart all connections of the material universe. Just as you can't observe an elementary particle without changing it, you can't observe true randomness through a thought experiment without changing it. In all cases of what you experience and therefore know, you're connected with the objects of your observation. In your act of observing true randomness, you prevent it from being true.

Imagine that each causation within a causal chain -- because of the fact of its existence -- generates a prior (or subsequent) causation. How does the chain of causation reach the point of no prior (or subsequent) causation?

That's the same thing as 2T + infinity = y

As I recall, y is an infinite value, and thus it has no discretely specifiable position on the number line; it's unlimited volume over limited extent between limits. It never arrives at a start point (or an end point).

Let us suppose true randomness is not a process. Is it still a phenomenon?

What is your definition of phenomenon?

Since a phenomenon is an object of a person's perception, what's already been said about observation of a material thing (facts as thoughts are material things) applies here too.

True randomness is not a thing. It is a logical concept and conclusion.

QM is not going to help you. You are taking things that exist and trying to impact true randomness as if its some dimension somewhere. Its not.

With your language you're saying -- literally -- that true randomness does not exist. Well, I agree. The difference between us, however, is that I intend to say that whereas you don't, even though you do. Moreover, by extension of the transitive property, you're saying your thought experiment doesn't exist. I know you think your thought experiment is dimensionless, but your brain is not. No brain, no thought experiment, so your thought experiment, in a complicated way, inherits the dimensions of your brain.

There was nothing which could have changed or prevente the inception of the universe Ucarr. It just happened.

Within the context of your thought experiment. And, as you think, your thought experiment has no dimensions, so, by your thinking, where does that posit the universe? Well, the one you think incepted from nothingness exists within the context of your thought experiment within your brain. See below for your own verification of this.

Hey, welcome back Bob! You still retain the title of the first person who realized this could not be proven empirically.

#### ucarr

Start FollowingSend a Message