Harv- I didn't realise you had addressed a question to me. I'm travelling but internet access seems to be in many places these days.
First: I had always intended to answer directly the serious points you mentioned in a topic on mysticism and biology at the other website. I may be on the wrong track, but I'll tell you something: the discoveries I made when developing a 'reply to Luis H.' some time ago led to a situation where everything seemed to be explaining itself very easily via a certain view.
In fact, I tended to avoid physics books for a while because I couldn't read them without seemingly 'dissolving' the mysteries within them into simple clarity. Reading physics has now necessitated writing physics. But I'll let you/ others judge whether it's all a mistaken trail or not. However, I think I have got on to a 'hot' trail so I'll see how it goes. Alex seems to have a very clear view of physics so maybe he can correct me if I'm wrong, when I get to write up the ideas better.
An impromptu reply to your comments on materialism:
True, Alex has started with 'existence' before even 'math'; logically you always have 'existence' more fundamental than math. You can't have math until you have 'have' (existence / an existent).
It is necessary, for the freedom to play any Chess game; to have Chess pieces and Chess rules. It is necessary, to have the freedom of a seagull, to have the restriction of being a seagull (and not an elephant). So; as you say; there are certain constraints on the game for there to be a game to be free within. Thus one might regard math symmetries/ physics laws in this light.
Logically Existence has to precede math.
A theist argues that 'Existence' is not a property, but a Person, a Being. Thus the most fundamental verb, the verb 'to be', is a noun.
Physics and math show that the existence of a phenomenon involves a 'deal', an 'accord' or 'contract' (like three compensating accelerations). Think about it: the deal for a giraffe includes: it gets to reach the juicy high branches of trees- the deal is it has a long neck.
Every freedom involves a deal- Chess involves a deal on the agreed moves the pieces can make.
There seems to be a to-and-fro aspect with Existence- to be free seems to require some restrictions or parameters of that freedom at least such as to make the freedom even possible (i.e. have to have a game defined to even be free to play- or no game/ no freedom to play without the game to play.)
Alex and Luis I'm sure acknowledge the reality of 'Existence'; but I guess question my saying Existence = A Being.
This is not a question of Santas or numerous deities; it is a question of one word: "Existence".
But to investigate this; one must use every ounce of skepticism and logic available; and question the very nature of how we are carrying out this conversation. What is really going on here? Shapes on a screen that may be unintelligible to an Arabian say. How in our history did we develop systems to allow us to match these language script shapes and patterns into other self-referent patterns etc.?
Well, I've run out of time: but I've suggested that 'material' involves the kind of 'deal' described: a boundary defining the game or material is necessary to have the existence of the game or material.