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I Sense Your Confusion!

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Posted by Richard D. Stafford, Ph.D. on May 8, 2002 15:31:41 UTC

Harv,

Your problem is very simple! You find yourself unable to follow my thoughts because you don't read what I say but rather interpret it in terms of what "you know to be true". A truly new perspective is very difficult to comprehend.
*****


***** Harv:
Are you saying that you do not assume symmetries?
*****

Yes indeedie do, I do so claim! I do not assume any symmetries in the knowable data at all. All the symmetries I use reside in the mechanism I use to display the knowable data. They are a direct consequence of the fact "that our 'senses' must be part of the explanation and should not be thought of as part of what the model is trying to explain".

***** Harv:
You think physics treats scale invariance as irrational? Dick, renormalization, universality, fractals, critical phenomena, second degree phase transitions, etc are all based on scale invariance. Even GR is working scale invariance:
*****

Oh, they use scale invariance in particular situations, but they do not use it as a universal rule and I assure you they would regard doing so as totally irrational!

***** Harv:
http://fermi.phys.ualberta.ca/~ccgrra/wheeler/
*****

I went and read the abstract you refer to. I do not know exactly what they are doing but I am fully confident their problems are the consequence of dealing improperly with the issue of time! The line "We show that the new theory, which hinges on the introduction of an 8-dimensional curved geometry, describes general relativity on a 4-dimensional submanifold." is sufficient to convince me that they are confused as is not necessary to consider a curve geometry of any kind to explain general relativity. Read part IV of chapter III.

***** Harv:
Time isn't defined per se. The flow of time is measured by clocks. But, no one is claiming to have fully defined time unless they are speculating. I know you think you know what time is, but you have not one experiment that could be conducted that would show that you do.
*****

Harv, I have no desire to discuss this issue with you any longer as you simply do not comprehend my complaint which is in fact very simple: if "same time" is to mean that "things which exist at 'the same time' can influence one another" then clocks do not measure time, period, end of sentence, end of thought. If you cannot comprehend that statement, you are confused!

***** Harv:
Here you are heading right straight dab into philosophy. Science can only be based on our senses.
*****

Right here you are assuming your mental picture of your senses is correct! Directly from chapter 1 of my presentation: "To set any part of those perceptions above examination is to scuttle rational science." By utterly refusing to consider your senses as part of the problem, you indeed do scuttle rational science.

***** Harv:
Regardless if our sense impressions are part of reality, it is our only connection to reality, and therefore understanding reality requires that we accept our sense impressions as given. You can't reject your sense impressions as being possibly inaccurate since then whatever you decipher would also be in error.
*****

Now Harv, do you really want that last statement to go down as your last and final position on the question? If I were in your shoes, I would be tempted to think about it just a little! Fundamentally, you are proposing that your subconscious is incapable of producing an illusion. You know on the face of it that is wrong; why don't you think a little on the deeper implications?

***** Harv:
We have a few choices in interpreting symmetries. We can 1) assume that they are real and that nature is mathematical in some way, or 2) assume that our senses and reasoning are limited to seeing the world through symmetry eyeglasses, or 3) assume that we simply haven't had enough time (or intellect) to devise other formulations of physics that are non-symmetrical approaches, 4) assume that we simply invent physics and that we only think we are right because of the usefulness that we obtain. I'm sure there may be others, but I don't think there is any way to know which is correct (if any of those).
*****

I notice a certain word cropping up quite often there! Why don't we simply assume that our senses are something which need to be part of our explanation and include that possibility when we look at the collection of possible explanations for the whole magilla?

Or, from another perspective, would you not say that the position, "we cannot know these symmetries are real", is less restrictive than the position, "we cannot know anything is real"? At least it leaves open the possibility that everything is not imaginary which I believe is your central complaint with solipsism! I my head it leaves a lot to be thought about!

Have fun -- Dick

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