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Infinite regress of causes
Posted: 31 March 2009 08:24 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 151 ]
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Cool it, don’t worry, be happy. Tomorrow is April Fool’s day. cool smile

[ Edited: 31 March 2009 08:26 AM by kkwan ]
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Posted: 31 March 2009 09:05 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 152 ]
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kkwan - 31 March 2009 07:31 AM

Did you watch the talk by Sean Carroll at the AAS which I posted?

His theory of the universe is an ongoing dynamic evolving multiverse (even before the Big Bang) with increasing entropy, time symmetry and baby universes coming into existence every now and then. There is no necessity for a first cause in his model. Infinity is not involved at all.

Emphasis added because I think you are wrong. Below I am offering a basic summary, going from around the beginning to the end of the video.

(do you think that letter was really written by a 10 year old? smile ). Interesting the way he put; “the only equilibrium state in general relativity is empty space, with no stuff”, and then went on to say inflation as an explanation is a fairly tale, and then said it does not explain why the early universe was like it was. Though, he explains that he is not saying inflation is wrong, only incomplete. After that he gets to the infinity - quantum mechanical understanding of the universe, applying it to say you go forward and backward forever.  I like that he suddenly switches right into the idea about asking “what happened before the big bang.” He then states flatly that saying “unask the question” (i.e. not allowed) of what came before the big bang, “is not the right answer!”, the right answer is “we don’t know”. If you’re honest you say “I don’t know”.  He makes a great point of saying that (many current) “eternal cosmologies” (infinite) make the problem of the arrow of time worse (talking about fuzzy boundary conditions!). Though he then says he is looking for an “eternal cosmology” that explains why we observe what we do locally (the arrow of time). Interesting he then goes into “space” having this energy, so “empty” space has a temperature. I think this is where my friend stops and says this is the irreducible primary, we are done with infinite regress, because it is eternal. I like he stays with the “I don’t know” and goes one step further to say there’s something probably not right, and he seems sure there is something wrong in there. You see, he is saying his theory creates baby universes forever, “the entropy of the whole shabag would be infinite”, or grow without bound. The final section is what he is also using as evidences for his theory. Starting at 48 minutes is a nice sum up… Where he even says entropy is unbounded… (“there are several leaps of faith for me to put together this picture”)

Now, my question to you is what do you think he’s talking about when he says “eternal”, “infinite” and “without bound”?

[ Edited: 31 March 2009 09:22 AM by Robert Buhn ]
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Posted: 31 March 2009 09:28 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 153 ]
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kkwan - 31 March 2009 08:24 AM

Cool it, don’t worry, be happy. Tomorrow is April Fool’s day. cool smile

If you plan on using that date in order to make it vague as to whether your explanations are serious or not, then please delay your answer until April 2 or after.  Unless you can beat the midnight deadline and answer the questions today.

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Posted: 31 March 2009 09:49 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 154 ]
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I wanted to add that I think what Carroll is basically doing is something I have mentioned several times on this thread, which is proposing an infinite process of finite events (the space is eternal). It appears to me what he is trying to settle is the problem with inflationary explanations of the universe (other eternal cosmologies), not reinventing the meaning of infinity, or removing it from his theory (the understanding of infinity is not vague as he uses it - what I find vague in what we are applying it to and how much sense that makes, of course I think he does to, because we “just don’t know”).

The only area it would touch on as far as infinite regress is that the space would be eternal. Of course, that adds another element, such as are the universes occupying all of space, and if not then how do we know other processes besides universes are not also within space. It only may end one area while opening others, if what is in space, the energy, has regress with interaction with something else. Of course, we could propose a process such as “baby universes” (though not technically universes) with an infinite process of finite events within the ‘other’ space, but then we are only multiplying what is being created, of course there could be eternal infinite processes of finite events and our universe and all universes are only part of the finite of the infinite “stuff” being created.

[ Edited: 31 March 2009 10:10 AM by Robert Buhn ]
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Posted: 01 April 2009 01:39 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 155 ]
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Let me tell a tale today, April Fool’s Day.

http://everythingforever.com/st_math.htm

When Zero Equals Infinity (God’s Math)

Since we developed math to count definite things, and zero represents no things, it makes sense that we don’t commonly switch into a system where zero is the sum of all numbers, although it can be done. It just can’t be done half way. As the saying goes, it’s all or nothing. Either we can see zero as every number or we can see zero as nothing.

It is only logical, that a test of the value of zero has to be a genuine consideration of the value of zero. If we test zero as the sum of all numbers we must allow its usual value of “nothing” to change to a value equal to the summation of all numbers. Which means we assume zero to have a value greater than all other numbers. Do you see what I am saying? Its a bit radical. If we sum all numbers instead of cancel all numbers, we alter the entire value system, and suddenly we have what appears at first to be nonsensical. If zero is the greatest value; i.e., the sum of all numbers, what then is the value of the number one, or two? Which is greater, one or two, if zero is greater than both?

In what I shall now refer to as Symmetry Mathematics, the number zero is considered to be the everything of math. It is a complete and infinite value. In this system, there is a whole, and this means that the infinity of possible values is absolutely definitive, a definitive zero (like the physical reality of empty space), not merely a endless series or a process. In this new system zero is genuinely infinite, and as we remove a part from the infinite whole, we create definitive values which are themselves infinite as well. I can assure the reader that the applications of this system are as interesting as this system is unique. We can visually express this new system with the image below which shows the value or content of the number 2.

values.gif

This new mathematical system is based upon a holistic perspective, its foundational axiom reflecting the innate singleness and wholeness of existence. Applied to the universe it would indicate that what we think of as empty space is really full and not empty. It would indicate that our universe is like a symmetry math number, definite, and yet infinite, but not yet the total infinite.

That point is a last number. I call the convergent sum for positive numbers Proto, which means first in time. Proto is a numeric representing positive infinity, here written +∞. I call the ultimate negative number Elea, the sum of all negative numbers. Obviously I derived the names from the proton and electron.

In treating a positive and a negative infinity as numbers, we then can write this simple equation:

+∞  +  -∞ = ∞ = 0

NUMBERS.GIF

Omega zero of symmetry math is infinitely large and contains all numbers, the expanding universe ultimately becomes a space that extends infinitely in all directions. Symmetry math is essentially a mathematical model of the Universe.

In symmetry math, infinity is no longer constrained to a never ending process, but rather the infinity of mathematical values is whole, bounded only by infinite extremes. Engulfing the finite, the entire symmetry mathematical plane is real, complete, and consequently quiescent and timeless. In symmetry math, zero represents everything, and because the smallest values of this system still represent half of the whole, we no longer confuse the nothings in this system with nonexistence.

In considering the new axioms of this system, we would not expect the values of the symmetry plane to be derived from an elementary first thing somehow emerging from nothing or an empty set, as is imagined of ordinary math. All is not magically arisen above nothing. In fact there is no axiom of nothing in symmetry math to imply a nonexistence, from which we question the existence of the rest.

And thereby hangs a tale. So, infinity is empty space. Agree? Disagree? Dunno? New Age spiritual mumbo jumbo?

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Posted: 02 December 2009 03:30 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 156 ]
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Quoting Bryan:  Even in an infinite set (i.e. real number line), you can stop at any point, define bounds, and define it finitely.

actually bryan you can’t do that.  if you where to pick a point on that line and attribute meaning to it positionally, you must do so by having referents.  for example, doing what you would try to do, you would pick a point 5 points ahead of your chosen position then pick a point 5 points behind your chosen point and then say ‘my chosen point is in the center of these two points’ and thus establish positional meaning for that chosen point within the infinite set.  the problem is this: in order for those referents before and after your chosen point to infuse positional significance to your chosen point, they also must have referents and those referents must have referents and so on ad infinitum within that infinite set.

i’ll put it another way:  have you ever been in your car at a stoplight and noticed another car moving but because of some weird trick of perspective you thought that you where the one moving?  so you mash the break to make sure that he is really the one moving and not you.  so the break is your referent.  but have you also ever been at a stoplight and knew your foot was on the break but still for a brief second wondered if you where the one moving in the same scenario?  so you look to the traffic sign as a referent to make sure that you are not the one moving.  but what would you do if the traffic sign started to move?

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Posted: 03 December 2009 12:05 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 157 ]
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wizduels - 02 December 2009 03:30 PM

Quoting Bryan:  Even in an infinite set (i.e. real number line), you can stop at any point, define bounds, and define it finitely.

That was not my statement.  It came from Mathenaut, whose formatting left a little something to be desired.
http://www.centerforinquiry.net/forums/viewreply/63492/

He was replying to this post of mine:
http://www.centerforinquiry.net/forums/viewreply/63479/

I’d appreciate it if you would edit your post to credit the true author.

actually bryan you can’t do that.  if you where to pick a point on that line and attribute meaning to it positionally, you must do so by having referents.  for example, doing what you would try to do, you would pick a point 5 points ahead of your chosen position then pick a point 5 points behind your chosen point and then say ‘my chosen point is in the center of these two points’ and thus establish positional meaning for that chosen point within the infinite set.  the problem is this: in order for those referents before and after your chosen point to infuse positional significance to your chosen point, they also must have referents and those referents must have referents and so on ad infinitum within that infinite set.

Not that this argument has anything to do with me, but your last point seems obviously specious.  If we are using an infinite number line (say, integers), then what stops us from making “0” our initial point of reference and “-10” one boundary and “10” the other boundary?  Are we supposed to experience relativistic confusion such that we will not recognize that “22” falls outside the bounds of our finite subset?

i’ll put it another way:  have you ever been in your car at a stoplight and noticed another car moving but because of some weird trick of perspective you thought that you where the one moving?  so you mash the break to make sure that he is really the one moving and not you.  so the break is your referent.  but have you also ever been at a stoplight and knew your foot was on the break but still for a brief second wondered if you where the one moving in the same scenario?  so you look to the traffic sign as a referent to make sure that you are not the one moving.  but what would you do if the traffic sign started to move?

How far would it have to move in order to escape from the finite subset?

I don’t think I understand your point.  You can’t be suggesting that “-10” will run all around within the set of all integers in order to escape being used as a boundary.

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Posted: 03 December 2009 06:18 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 158 ]
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wow it had been so long since the last post before mine i didn’t know if anyone would respond.  first i apologize for misquoting - i was trying to digest most of this incredibly long thread before jumping in.  also, right after i finished my last post i realized that the person who made this statement did have a point.  you can give positional relevance to any point in regards to it’s referents when defining a finite set within an infinite set.  so a point can have positional relevance within a finite set defined within an infinite set but in regards to the greater infinite set all points lose their positional significance.  that was the point i was trying to make.

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