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I Did Not Mean To Insult Anyone!

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Posted by Richard D. Stafford, Ph.D. on July 20, 2002 20:02:21 UTC

Aurino,

I am very sorry I upset you. I did not intend that as I regard you very highly.

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Aurino: It's not easy discussing anything with you.
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You are quite right there. It is an aspect of my view of what one should say. When I was a child, my mother told me that one learns more by listening than by talking (my dad tended to talk a lot but my mother seldom said anything - I suspect my mother was quite a bit more intelligent than my father but he would never have admitted that). I have listened for most of my life and said very little. A discussion is when people talk about things they are not sure of. My personality is such that I seldom say anything unless I am dammed sure I have something worthwhile to say. If I think I could be wrong, I keep my mouth shut and listen. That is one of my problems when it comes to communicating my ideas: I have never had much practice communicating so I don't do it well. I have learned a lot on this forum.

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Aurino: Except for Paul, perhaps, I think you pretty much insulted everyone here, including me at some point.
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Insult was never my intention! When I said I was disappointed in you, I meant that I was disappointed that you of all people found no problems with Yanniru's description of what he calls my errors. To me that indicated that you didn't read what he said at all but merely left your conclusion up to "whoever won the argument". Perhaps I misjudged your position but I didn't intend to insult you.

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Aurino: I soon noticed you were too sensitive to criticism, so I decided to keep my mouth shut and just try and learn what I could, and learn I did.
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I am sorry that I give the impression of being sensitive to criticism; I have never thought that of myself. To my knowledge, I have never been anything accept honest as to what I thought of others comments. I have seen very few criticisms of anything I have said; the only real criticisms I have noticed have been criticisms of my mode of expressing myself. Those I take very seriously. Most of the other comments people have made here seem to have little bearing on rational thought; but again, that is only my opinion.

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Aurino: However, I never fully supported all of your ideas, I find some of them bizarre and a few of them just plain wrong. But I have no interest in discussing as you have never, not even once, acknowledged the validity of any criticism from anyone. You hide yourself behind the complexities of your math, and in doing so you have become just like one of the authorities you're so fond of criticizing.
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No, I do not hide behind the complexities of my math. I am willing to explain any part of any mathematical expression I have written down. Furthermore, I am of the opinion that there is no one here who couldn't understand each and every part of everything there if they wished to do so. There is nothing in my entire paper which is beyond the comprehension of a high school student except perhaps the general relativity section which requires understanding of the Euler-Lagrange method of solving for minimal paths.

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Aurino: Like anyone else, I happen to have my opinions on everything, and I'm glad I found someone who shares some of my most out-of-the-mainstream positions. But while I regard my position as opinion, you have more and more made it clear you take yourself as the keeper of absolute truth.
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No, I do not regard myself as "the keeper of absolute truth". However, if something is true by definition, it must be true! I have indeed discovered something very significant and I can prove it follows directly from definition. At the moment, that is the issue that concerns me and the only one I have really discussed. With regard to that issue, I am indeed "the keeper of absolute truth"; (but only with regard to that issue).

No one else believes that truth. It follows that either they do not accept my definitions or they do not accept my logic; however, no one wants to discuss either my definitions or my logic! What they want to discuss is my conclusions (they are all quite confident that I could not possibly be right, logic be dammed). I don't have a very high opinion of that attack though I accept it. I have to; most people on earth have utterly no interest in thinking at all.

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Aurino: Your contempt for any discussion which doesn't involve the ideas in your paper,
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Lack of interest is not the same as contempt!

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Aurino: your disregard for the intellectual achievements of our species,
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I have a very strong regard for the intellectual achievements of our species, but I do recognize that most of it has been achieved by their subconscious, not their conscious efforts.

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Aurino: your insistence that our attempts at understanding our universe and our place in it are "just a story",
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I think you have misunderstood what I meant by the statement "a story is a story is a story". There is a subtle issue here which you seem to have overlooked. As I said once, the best lie is one that fits all the facts. What any true intellectual should realize is that the fact that an explanation fits all the facts neither guarantees it will always fit all the facts nor that it is the only story which fits all the facts (even if you can't think of another one).

There are two very important characteristics to any explanation of anything (any story). The depth of the explanation (how much does it explain) and the internal consistency of the explanation (how logical is it). Most explanations of anything may be kept logical if they are kept sufficiently shallow. The "God" explanation is very logical if your want to explain why you cannot control anything. I use it myself: God is the explanation of that which cannot be explained which, as a matter of fact, is the majority of my life.

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Aurino: I'm sorry to say that I don't share those opinions with you at all.
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I don't think that what you expressed as my opinions are a good representation of my opinions at all; that is of course, only an opinion.

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Aurino: So what is left? I still think you have an important message, and that is that people should think more clearly about what they are saying, especially when they have the responsibility to educate the masses. I think many of our scientists are corrupt bureaucrats who care more about their petty ideologies and interests than about truth. But we must be very careful not to throw the baby with the bath water. Dismissing the whole of science, the whole of philosophy, the whole of religion, as "just a story", is not only wrong, misguided, misleading, it can be poison to a person's mind. I think that's really what turns people off from your work. Misquoting from a movie, sometimes when you're right, you're wrong.
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If you think my message is "that people should think more clearly about what they are saying, especially when they have the responsibility to educate the masses" then you have missed the entire thrust of the whole thing. That message is extreamly common and everyone should be aware of it.

My message is that I have thought one particular issue out very carefully and discovered a surprising alternate view. My view opens up a whole new panorama of intellectual questions which are inconceivable from the ordinary perspective; yet just as logical. Issues to be thought about which will never be seen so long as one closes one's mind to the possibilities.

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Aurino: And last but not least. I do hate it when people assess my intelligence based on my ability to understand boring mathematical "proofs".
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Well, I won't comment on that other than to say that logic is logic and programming requires exactly the same kind of intellectual effort as those "boring mathematical proofs". There are two kinds of "good" programmers: those who have made all the mistakes and those who are good at analytical logic and manage to avoid most of the mistakes.

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Aurino: That Feynman quote from your paper, the one which says "if you can't express it in math then you don't know what you're talking about", I could never swallow it. But that's OK.
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That was Lord Kelvin, not Feynman. Feynman said, "mathematics is distilled logic"!

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Aurino: All in all, it's been fun. But, as you have noticed already, if the truth of your arguments is in your math, this is definitely not the place for you.
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The proof of the truth resides in the math but the truth of the truth stands by itself. With regard to that issue, I would like to go back to one of your earlier posts. I was very slow with my response to your "cause and effect" post because I thought you deserved a decent explanation. First, I think you are very good but I also think you are a little short sighted when it comes to seeing all the possibilities.

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Aurino: I must confess sometimes I can't make any sense of what you write. What do you mean 'no cause and effect'?
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First, it is quite evident that cause and effect is a basic concept essential to any explanation. If one is to explain something, the answer is clearly an answer to the question "why?" The answer to the question "why?" is called the cause; the logical result of the cause is called the effect. From this it is quite evident that any logical explanation of anything requires the concept of "cause and effect".

So, the next question to ask is, does the existance of reality require the concept "cause and effect" or is the concept purely associated with the explanation of reality. Now the difference between my work and the thoughts of everyone else is the fact that I do not ask the question "why?" My question is instead, "what?" Now the answer to the question "what?" does not require a cause. You can think of it as an effect without cause. That shouldn't bother anyone here as the answer to the question "why" ultimately falls back to some effect without cause anyway so why not just cut to the chase.

If you have followed my discussions with Harv, you should remember my definition of "GOD": i.e., the Great Original Dillema; that anything explainable must be based on something which is not explainable. So, from my analysis, GOD is all that exists; everything you know is some aspect of GOD.

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Aurino: But just because the universe is not an object, it doesn't mean that all concepts we apply to objects are meaningless or, at best, unreal.
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I suspect here that we need to get a better grasp on what we each mean by the word "object". By my definition of the term, the universe is indeed an object. And I wouldn't refer to any concept as meaningless if the concept has defined. Finally, exactly what does one mean by the term "unreal"?

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Aurino: The universe provides the context in which our experiences become real; the universe itself is definitely not real but that doesn't bother me in the least.
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You see, I would say that what our subconscious is trying to represent is real but that the representation itself is an illusion. What the "universe" is needs to be cleared up as you have not given me your definition. I would have thought that the "universe" was exactly what our subconscious is trying to represent and thus would be real by definition.

I think you misconscrewed my reference to Paul entirely. When I said Paul has been trying to find the end of a piece of string where he can start his reasoning, what I meant was that he believes the issue can be solved by building an explanation from pieces and is looking for a starting place; trying to define a starting place. My point that such an attack will fail comes from the fact that definition itself requires words indicating that there is no such starting place which is what I thought you understood when you said "___ ______".

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Aurino: Why is it that reality is ultimately unreal? Why is it that we can know so much about reality, and yet the only thing we can be absolutely sure about is that 'I' exist, 'I' being defined as something outside reality. I think I have solved that problem myself but I doubt I can communicate my solution. And I think you have also solved the problem, in a different way, and I also doubt your solution is communicable.
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I think the solution is quite clear: every explanation requires a starting point and the starting point cannot be explained. God is the explanation of that which cannot be explained and I simply leave the issue there!

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Aurino: As I said before, it gets pretty lonely in here sometimes.
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I don't think you have any comprehension of loneliness until you have seen what I see!

Have fun as that is all there is -- Dick

P.S. The only people on this forum which I hold in contempt are Yanniru, Bruce and Humbug who are unique in that they are clearly incompetent at rational thought and merely ride the coattails of the academies to impress the ignorant.


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