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Posted by Harvey on April 11, 2002 12:29:42 UTC

Hi Alan,

***Do you define it as "that which is unrestricted in any way?" That which "IS" unrestricted...?***

We aren't exactly defining reality, perhaps a better word is that we trying to identify reality the best way we know how. By the fact that we identify something 'out there', we are in a sense restricting reality, but only enough as to indicate what we are talking about. For example, we identify the world as being approximated by mathematical processes, but that doesn't mean the we define the world as being mathematical, the former restricts the world to a human approximation (just so that we can identify a quality that we happen to notice), and the latter defines reality in a manner that is too restrictive.

***Is it allowed to be "restricted" sufficient to use "IS"? IS it allowed to be "restricted" by its very existence?***

Again, I sense that you are trying to impute our sense of logic ('restricted' or 'unrestricted') on what we cannot know about what we don't know. The only reference that we are making is to 'all that is out there'. That may be nothing at all if the solipsists are correct. On the other hand, it might be all the things that exist, or things that don't fall into a category of existing and not existing, etc. We don't allow reality to be restricted by our words.

***Or by "reality" do you mean "that which exists AND that which DOESN'T exist"?***

Reality is 'all that is out there' or perhaps 'all that is not out there'. What we don't know is the real property of a thing. Maybe it has muliple properties that contradict each other (e.g., exist and not exist).

***Things that break the law of non-contradiction are things that do not exist.***

This is circular reasoning. The LNC states -(P & -P). You cannot say things that break this law do not exist entirely since they are speculated to exist as P and not exist as P. What prevents them from existing and not existing?

***If the laws of physics still apply then they not only represent the law of non-contradiction; but they represent your freedom to be honest or to contradict. They represent the existence of a free conscious being that can choose to fool itself or not.***

The laws of physics is really a poor choice of words since we are really talking about models made by physicists that capture observable behaviors of nature. We cannot say whether physical 'laws' are descriptive or nomological. Once we move to the world of what really is, then we must be content to say that we are dealing only with descriptions as they appear to us. We can't assume that descriptions as they appear to us translate into nomological laws.

***The usual meaning of "reality" is "what exists"; so by definition "reality" is RESTRICTED to that which exists and excludes contradictions.***

I don't think that is a good definition. It is good enough in most circumstances, but it leads to the notion that if nothing is 'out there' then nothing exists - hence no reality. But, this would not be the case. Reality would be something else such as what a pure solipsist might say is reality. In addition, the denial of the LNC only means that we are not restricting the properties of reality to either existing or not existing. Perhaps things can be both (e.g., particle and not a particle).

***The door of non-contradiction always remains open here apparently. That is, don't contradict that it was a fantasy.***

Where you to be careful Alan is that you use the LNC to define reality, and then place the same restrictions as before. What I am saying is that you cannot assume the LNC applies, and therefore you cannot apply those restrictions of the LNC onto reality. That is the basic point.

Warm regards, Harv

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