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Nothing Psychological Here

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Posted by Harvey on November 1, 2002 19:32:50 UTC

Dick,

There is nothing interesting, psychologically speaking, in my responses to your posts. You are a magician, and as a skeptic, it is my job to find out how the magician performs his tricks.

The fundamental problem is that you use the connotations of words (e.g., possibility, can be, etc), to develop your thesis while gradually changing the connotation to extend your thesis. You also use simple schemes (e.g., labelling with numbers) while gradually depending on the properties of numbers. And, to make matters worse, you actually switch your thesis in mid-stride. For example, sometimes you are talking about things that are communicable, and sometimes you are talking about things that are possible by Dick, and sometimes you are talking about things that are known to be possible because of logic, and sometimes you are talking about things that should at least be considered possible while adding no constraints to the solution of a problem. If I try to define a word (e.g., possible), you avoid providing a definition. If I provide a definition you object to it! You are one slippery fella who evidently believes that you are presenting something coherent. In any case, let me respond to this post.

***Harv: In that situation, the best you could do is label 'Ultimate Reality' with just a number and that's it. Dick: That's fine! It doesn't bother me a bit and is fully consistent with what I have said. Harv: Anything more, would be an invalid assumption about something that you have no idea if you are even remotely correct. Dick:
Once more I agree 100% and it doesn't bother me a bit as it is fully consistent with what I have said! Harv: ...you can label 'Ultimate Reality' by the number 24, but this is all that you can do. You cannot go further than that. Dick: Where did I say that I could? You are reading things into what I am saying which are not there and completely overlooking the central issue!***

Sounds all good and well. It seems like you have no problem applying one label (eg, '24', 'Ultimate Reality', 'everything that exists') to this concept, and leaving it at that. Unfortunately this is not the case as you show at the end of your text:

"What I am doing is proposing a totally unconstrained method of quantifying descriptions of 'Ultimate Reality'. Now, if 'Ultimate Reality' is, by some stroke of luck, ever eventually fully and correctly described, then my analysis is completely and totally applicable. Meanwhile it is completely applicable to any intermediate description (whether that description is right or wrong)."

You go from accepting my statement that we say '24' and leave it at that to a contradictory view: "then my analysis is completely and totally applicable". How is it possible that you can say one thing and then contradict yourself a few paragraphs later?

***If you could follow the treatment, you would see that my analysis is valid in either case!***

Here is our chief disagreement. In order for a description of '24' (or, if you prefer, 'Ultimate Reality', 'everything that exists', etc) to be valid, we must understand the properties of '24', but this is what I'm saying that we cannot know. The only way we can know the properties of '24' is by basing that reasoning on human logic. However, there is no way to know that the properties of '24' are in line with human logic.

***I am not seeking to quantify 'Ultimate Reality' at all. That is a complete figment in your imagination. What I am doing is proposing a totally unconstrained method of quantifying descriptions of 'Ultimate Reality'.***

What are the primitives of your method? What are your axioms? Whatever they are, they may (A) or may not be (B) true of the properties of '24'. If they are true (A), well, then all is good and well. If not true (B) of '24' (or not applicable to '24'), then your method doesn't work at all.

***What I am doing is proposing a totally unconstrained method of quantifying descriptions of 'Ultimate Reality'.***

If (B), then you haven't quantified anything about 'Ultimate Reality'. Since we cannot know if (A) is true or (B) is true, there is no way to assume (7) as true since it requires (A) to be true. If (A) is false, then so is (7).

Warm regards, Harv

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