Blocking Evolution

This is not an everything goes forum, but rather a place to ask questions and request help for developing your ideas.

Blocking Evolution

Postby Brent696 on August 3rd, 2018, 2:34 pm 

(Evolution)
Despite the blinding faith of some within the scientific community that the Theory of Evolution has advanced to some kind of proven status simply through consensus, Evolutional theory still contains significance gaps in evidence. From the “explosions” recorded in the fossil records to the posits a grand time scales, to the multiplicity of mechanisms offered from Random mutation to Genetic drift, Evolution still offers major hurdles to overcome before it can stand on its own as objectively evidential.

(The Block)
But this post is not about Evolution other than to say that the Block negates any need for a forced linear progression. As everything, more or less, has come into existence at once, or even appears at once. Some might still demand evolution only because they consider consciousness to be merely an effect of biological/neurological function, but this demand become circular if the universe demands consciousness as one of its foundational constituent factor. So stated, without consciousness, there is no universe, so the universe cannot exist prior to consciousness.

My personal T.O.E. consists of Time, Space, Gravity, Life/Consciousness, these four together forming the underlying invisible substrate template for a perceivable/phenomenal universe. Since this knowledge does not come to me through scientific or philosophical academia, it would not be kosher for me to defend it here, even in the philosophical section of this forum. I am posting to see how others might reconcile these theories, as it would seem any need to prove the theory of Evolution would seem obsolete at this point. Such a need rather, being what Einstein might call “persistent illusion”

“Now he has departed from this strange world a little ahead of me. That means nothing. People like us, who believe in physics, know that the distinction between past, present and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion” Einstein
User avatar
Brent696
Member
 
Posts: 288
Joined: 12 Jul 2018


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby davidm on August 3rd, 2018, 6:42 pm 

Brent696 » August 3rd, 2018, 12:34 pm wrote:(Evolution)
Despite the blinding faith of some within the scientific community...


Science does not operate on faith. Just the opposite: it is anti-faith.

... that the Theory of Evolution has advanced to some kind of proven status...


Theories are never proved. They are defeasible models of the world that are constantly subject to revision, modification, and falsification. Evolution, however, is both a fact and a theory. It is an observed fact that populations (not individuals) evolve -- i.e. that allele frequencies change over time. The theory of evolution explains the fact of evolution, while making checkable predictions and retrodictions. So far, evolutionary theory has survived every check with flying colors.

... simply through consensus, Evolutional theory still contains significance gaps in evidence.


Oh?

From the “explosions” recorded in the fossil records ...


The Cambrian Explosion is not a problem for evolutionary theory.

... to the posits a grand time scales ...


There is an overwhelming and consilient evidence for grand time scales. Are you a YEC?

... to the multiplicity of mechanisms offered from Random mutation to Genetic drift ...


Both random mutation and genetic drift are observed and well-documented,

... Evolution still offers major hurdles to overcome before it can stand on its own as objectively evidential.


What are they?

(The Block)
But this post is not about Evolution other than to say that the Block negates any need for a forced linear progression.


Are you talking about the block universe interpretation of GR?

ETA: Also, evolution is not "progress." It's just change.
davidm
Member
 
Posts: 551
Joined: 05 Feb 2011
Event Horizonzetreque liked this post


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby hyksos on August 5th, 2018, 9:40 pm 

It appears that the claim here goes something like : Evolution of human beings is incompatible with the existence of consciousness in humans.


I am posting to see how others might reconcile these theories, as it would seem any need to prove the theory of Evolution would seem obsolete at this point.

Really? This almost looks like you are asking for my input.
User avatar
hyksos
Active Member
 
Posts: 1656
Joined: 28 Nov 2014


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby Brent696 on August 5th, 2018, 10:40 pm 

In a block universe, where past and future are already existing, and in which consciousness is seen as a fundamental component of reality, the NEED for a linear progression of the physical body becomes unnecessary.

The linear progression (Time) is an illusion, in the Block everything is created at once, and might even be said not to exist except as consciousness is perceiving it.

This is not about religion verses evolution, nor is there a need for anyone to defend evolution. It is simply to pose that if consciousness is a fundamental component of reality in a block universe, 1) consciousness could not be an effect of biology, and 2) evolution is just part of the illusion.
User avatar
Brent696
Member
 
Posts: 288
Joined: 12 Jul 2018


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby davidm on August 6th, 2018, 9:37 am 

Oh, now I get the thread title — it has a double meaning!

The block model implies nothing about consciousness, and certainly does not mean that consciousness could not be an “effect of biology.” Nor does it imply that consciousness is "fundamental."

The block model also obviates the idea that the universe was created — all locations in space and time simply exist, and objects and organisms exist eternally, between the boundary conditions of their beginnings and their ends, which for life forms are births and deaths. Between those boundary conditions organisms and objects are world tubes. What does any of this have to do with evolution?
davidm
Member
 
Posts: 551
Joined: 05 Feb 2011


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby hyksos on August 6th, 2018, 1:01 pm 

Passersby to this thread may need this quotation to parse us. (The source of this quote will be furnished upon request. I don't want to muck up this conversation with outside materials.)

Einstein’s masterpiece, the general theory of relativity, and the Standard Model of particle physics. The laws that underlie these theories are time-symmetric — that is, the physics they describe is the same, regardless of whether the variable called “time” increases or decreases. Moreover, they say nothing at all about the point we call “now” — a special moment (or so it appears) for us, but seemingly undefined when we talk about the universe at large. The resulting timeless cosmos is sometimes called a “block universe” — a static block of space-time in which any flow of time, or passage through it, must presumably be a mental construct or other illusion.
User avatar
hyksos
Active Member
 
Posts: 1656
Joined: 28 Nov 2014


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby hyksos on August 6th, 2018, 1:56 pm 

Evolution still offers major hurdles to overcome before it can stand on its own as objectively evidential.

I guess I missed this part. I'm going to deem this poster an uneducated crackpot.

Now I will dismiss myself from this conversation and from this thread.
User avatar
hyksos
Active Member
 
Posts: 1656
Joined: 28 Nov 2014
zetreque liked this post


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby davidm on August 6th, 2018, 2:51 pm 

I’m a little puzzled why the concept of the block universe is brought up apparently as an attempted defeater of evolutionary theory, or of evolution (which is a fact).

The problem is much more general: if the block concept is correct, then all change and motion and temporal passage are somehow illusory.

The proponent of the block owes an account of how we experience change in an unchanging 4D block world. 


For example, in 1922 Weyl wrote: “The objective world simply is, it does not happen. Only to the gaze of my consciousness crawling upward along the life-line [world line] of my body does a section of this world come to life as a fleeting image.”

But what does this mean? It explains nothing. How does consciousness crawl up a life-line, or world line, in a world where nothing can crawl even in principle since all is fixed and static? This sort of non-explanation seems to posit a dualism between spacetime and consciousness that I find very dubious, to say nothing of wholly unevidenced.
davidm
Member
 
Posts: 551
Joined: 05 Feb 2011
TheVat liked this post


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby Brent696 on August 6th, 2018, 2:54 pm 

hyksos » August 6th, 2018, 1:01 pm wrote:Passersby to this thread may need this quotation to parse us. (The source of this quote will be furnished upon request. I don't want to muck up this conversation with outside materials.)


No you are not mucking it up at all, in fact I have been trying to move it this way. When I originally came to this forum my approach was from a transcendent Infinite observing the Universe from without, working my way in as it were, most notably in my the "The Physics of Christ" which did contain a theological purpose to the universe.

Since no one seemed able follow me, with no shortage of "dismissals" cast my way, and having learned a bit more of the terminology used in physics, I have come inside the Universe to work my way back out. And it has been very encouraging to see many physicists have come to the same conclusions I have from their own vantage points.

Physics is dealing with the nature of reality itself, obviously this creates certain implications upon those scientific hypothesis' that are more specialized and and wholly dependent upon a particular higher theory of reality. So in short, the hypothetical assumption for Evolution is based upon a hard A theory of Time. Since Einstein though a tenseless B theory of Time has come to be the more dominant or accurate view of reality.

So we can ask, if the B theory is correct, how does that effect sub theories such as Evolution which are fundamentally founded upon an A model of Time. (BTW I think there is some relevance here to the point Reg/Allships is always keen to make about certain limitations) With this in mind, I can offer the web page you probably are referring to with some more quotes. "https://www.quantamagazine.org/a-debate-over-the-physics-of-time-20160719/"

The Alternative Origins of Time
Can the arrow of time be understood without invoking the past hypothesis? Some physicists argue that gravity — not thermodynamics — aims time’s arrow. In this view, gravity causes matter to clump together, defining an arrow of time that aligns itself with growth of complexity,....


Koslowski and his colleagues developed simple models of universes made up of 1,000 pointlike particles, subject only to Newton’s law of gravitation, and found that there will always be a moment of maximum density and minimum complexity. As one moves away from that point, in either direction, complexity increases. Naturally, we — complex creatures capable of making observations — can only evolve at some distance from the minimum. Still, wherever we happen to find ourselves in the history of the universe, we can point to an era of less complexity and call it the past, Koslowski said. The models are globally time-symmetric, but every observer will experience a local arrow of time……


“Gravity essentially eliminates the need for a past hypothesis,” Koslowski said……


Increasing complexity, Koslowski said, has one crucial side effect: It leads to the formation of certain arrangements of matter that maintain their structure over time. These structures can store information; Koslowski calls them “records.” Gravity is the first and primary force that makes record formation possible; other processes then give rise to everything from fossils and tree rings to written documents. What all of these entities have in common is that they contain information about some earlier state of the universe.


One of the points I have stressed is that our Universe consists of the phenomenal level of experience, along with an invisible template layer of structural patterns as that which our mathematical symbolism tends to describe as it describes these patterns and the relationship between them. And beneath these patterns at the foundations of existence itself lies four principles, Time, Space, Gravity, and Consciousness. Hence I have always had a problem with the idea that Matter is the cause of Gravity as it reverses the order of manifest reality, as if Matter can created a universal constant. But on this Idea of Gravity it is encouraging to see some physicists pushing back at this also.

But for purposes here, Blocking Evolution, I am presenting that the above view of Physics, simply nullifies any demand that Evolution is a necessity for our present existence. Including that consciousness is merely a byproduct of biology.

Science can be stubborn in many ways, flat Earth to Spherical, Newtonian to Einstein/Relativity, 3D to 2D Universe, with Evolution I have always found the evidence to be like pages in a book, gaining in complexity as one turns the pages, and science claiming a certainty beyond the evidence as it tries to span such gaps with what I consider poor theoretical models. The honest admission that they couldn't quite put it together would have let them to a higher vista in which to understand the universe which physics has actually done.

But there is a strong demand for the status quo, for Time and free will to remain so man might think better of himself, nothing is worse to most people than the surrendering of control. But now I am waxing philosophical, I guess having been cast out into the outer odds and ends can do that to you. Having gone beyond most attention spans and I will leave it at this.
User avatar
Brent696
Member
 
Posts: 288
Joined: 12 Jul 2018


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby davidm on August 6th, 2018, 3:04 pm 

The B theory of time does not contradict the fact of evolution, sorry. The B theory of time merely means that Socrates exists, as does our distant ancestors (such as the most recent common ancestor of chimps and humans), but that we can no longer see them or interact with them. Trying to invoke the B theory of time against evolution is ludicrous.
davidm
Member
 
Posts: 551
Joined: 05 Feb 2011


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby davidm on August 6th, 2018, 3:26 pm 

Under the B theory of time, all events in time are relational, just like events in space. For example, in space, Wichita is east of San Francisco, but west of New York, so it is both east and west depending on one’s perspective. But all three cities exist. Similarly, under B time theory, 2018 is later than 1918, but earlier than 2118, so it is both earlier and later, depending on one’s perspective. But all three times exist. What, pray, does this have to do with evolution? Answer: nothing.

Also, why are theists so freaked out about the fact of evolution?

To put it another way, if the B theory of time contradicts evolution, then it contradicts all of history -- which is nonsense.
davidm
Member
 
Posts: 551
Joined: 05 Feb 2011


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby Brent696 on August 7th, 2018, 5:09 pm 

davidm » August 6th, 2018, 3:26 pm
Under the B theory of time, all events in time are relational, just like events in space. For example, in space, Wichita is east of San Francisco, but west of New York, so it is both east and west depending on one’s perspective. But all three cities exist.......
To put it another way, if the B theory of time contradicts evolution, then it contradicts all of history -- which is nonsense.


Do you really not understand Evolution is about a "process", totally dependent upon an A-theory of time as it lends itself to cause and effect? I never questioned whether dinosaurs existed or not, nor have I argued that history does not appear with graduating levels of complexity as the information has been distributed, these are all part of the illusion of time.

Its one thing to read about theories in a book, its another to place yourself inside of one and look out to see other ramifications of that theory.
User avatar
Brent696
Member
 
Posts: 288
Joined: 12 Jul 2018


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby TheVat on August 7th, 2018, 5:30 pm 

You realize the block U theory is a deterministic one, and therefore at odds with the Christian theistic view that humans have free will.

Just making sure you're inside, looking out at the ramifications.

Also, do not confuse microstates, where time-symmetrical interactions happen, and macrostates where an arrow of time is asymmetrical. If you understand how thermodynamics works in biochemical systems, then you see that the "tense-less" perspective is not applicable. Or as playwright Tom Stoppard said, "you can't unstir coffee."
User avatar
TheVat
Forum Administrator
 
Posts: 7258
Joined: 21 Jan 2014
Location: Black Hills


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby Brent696 on August 7th, 2018, 6:38 pm 

Braininvat » August 7th, 2018, 5:30 pm wrote:You realize the block U theory is a deterministic one, and therefore at odds with the Christian theistic view that humans have free will.


"One" of the Christian world views, not mine. The only time in nearly sixty years that He spoke to me it was to tell me He chose me and I did not choose Him, so this would be irrelevant.

Just making sure you're inside, looking out at the ramifications.


For sure for sure dude, I know your just trying to help a brother out.

Also, do not confuse microstates, where time-symmetrical interactions happen, and macrostates where an arrow of time is asymmetrical. If you understand how thermodynamics works in biochemical systems, then you see that the "tense-less" perspective is not applicable.


When the theory states reality is "tenseless" it makes no such exceptions.
And are you really using the second law of thermodynamics to actually support Evolution, that's a new one on me. [/quote]

Or as playwright Tom Stoppard said, "you can't unstir coffee."


I think it was pudding and jam but I get your point, A theory is very intuitive to out experience, it is not an easy illusion to get past.
User avatar
Brent696
Member
 
Posts: 288
Joined: 12 Jul 2018


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby davidm on August 7th, 2018, 11:30 pm 

Brent696 » August 7th, 2018, 3:09 pm wrote:
davidm » August 6th, 2018, 3:26 pm
Under the B theory of time, all events in time are relational, just like events in space. For example, in space, Wichita is east of San Francisco, but west of New York, so it is both east and west depending on one’s perspective. But all three cities exist.......
To put it another way, if the B theory of time contradicts evolution, then it contradicts all of history -- which is nonsense.


Do you really not understand Evolution is about a "process"...


Yes, everything can be called a "process," not just evolution, and exactly none of these processes depend upon an A theory of time. It's just that under the B theory, processes are recast in "earlier/later" relations, as I've already explained, and will not do so again.
davidm
Member
 
Posts: 551
Joined: 05 Feb 2011


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby davidm on August 7th, 2018, 11:46 pm 

Braininvat » August 7th, 2018, 3:30 pm wrote:You realize the block U theory is a deterministic one, and therefore at odds with the Christian theistic view that humans have free will.


If one is a compatibilist, then determinism does not obviate free will. Rather, under the compatibilist account, free will depends on determinism.

The worry with the block U has even been given a different name from the standard deterministic accounts: relativistic determinism. The idea is that the block entails that the future is already set in stone, so you can't change it, so then how can one have free will if the future is already set?

This would take a longer discussion, but I dispute this apparent defeater to free will, just as I dispute all the other more standard ones.
davidm
Member
 
Posts: 551
Joined: 05 Feb 2011


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby davidm on August 7th, 2018, 11:48 pm 

Brent696 » August 7th, 2018, 4:39 pm wrote: The only time in nearly sixty years that He spoke to me it was to tell me He chose me and I did not choose Him ...


Oh, dear.
davidm
Member
 
Posts: 551
Joined: 05 Feb 2011


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby Brent696 on August 7th, 2018, 11:59 pm 

davidm » August 7th, 2018, 11:30 pm wrote:
Brent696 » August 7th, 2018, 3:09 pm wrote:
davidm » August 6th, 2018, 3:26 pm
Under the B theory of time, all events in time are relational, just like events in space. For example, in space, Wichita is east of San Francisco, but west of New York, so it is both east and west depending on one’s perspective. But all three cities exist.......
To put it another way, if the B theory of time contradicts evolution, then it contradicts all of history -- which is nonsense.


Do you really not understand Evolution is about a "process"...


Yes, everything can be called a "process," not just evolution, and exactly none of these processes depend upon an A theory of time. It's just that under the B theory, processes are recast in "earlier/later" relations, as I've already explained, and will not do so again.


Really? You work so hard to insult my intelligence, and now you are pretending not to know the difference between a spatial relationship and a linear relationship where one thing is said to actually evolve (Become) something else. No one ever claims New York evolved into San Francisco. Furthermore the fact that New York is east of San Francisco does not qualify as a "process".

But please don't explain it again because two wrongs, unlike odd numbers, do not make a right.

In the same way time is spoken of as a movie reel, frame after frame, and it is the mind that seeks to create continuity between the frames, then it could be understood that evolutionists are seeking to do the same thing across the ages of time. This has nothing to do with whether the different forms existed at different stages of Earth's history.

If all stages exists simultaneously, no time, a big block existing all at once,

Nothing can evolve, nothing needs to evolve,

Consciousness, under the illusion of an A theory of time, IMPOSES a causal (linear) timeline over the frames of history.

I could actually take this farther because ALL science really knows, is that layers of rocks have funny looking shapes in them. Everything beyond that is speculation by interpretation, history as we think of it might not actually exist, even reality as we think ourselves to experience it might not exist, but I was really just trying to go for the elementary version in a B-Block scenario.
User avatar
Brent696
Member
 
Posts: 288
Joined: 12 Jul 2018


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby davidm on August 8th, 2018, 12:01 am 

Brent696 » August 7th, 2018, 3:09 pm wrote:
Do you really not understand Evolution is about a "process", totally dependent upon an A-theory of time as it lends itself to cause and effect?


To take another quick pass at this, you've simply defined a "process" -- any process, not just evolution -- as depending on an A theory of time. This is certainly circular, but perhaps you could lay out your premises and conclusion more formally to test its apparent circularity.

Further, you have not demonstrated the validity of the B theory or block universe, and it's not even exactly clear to me that B theory and Block U are precisely equivalent. I know that the A theory and presentism are not the same, though many conflate the two.
davidm
Member
 
Posts: 551
Joined: 05 Feb 2011


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby davidm on August 8th, 2018, 12:12 am 

Brent696 » August 7th, 2018, 9:59 pm wrote:[
Really? You work so hard to insult my intelligence, and now you are pretending not to know the difference between a spatial relationship and a linear relationship where one thing is said to actually evolve (Become) something else. No one ever claims New York evolved into San Francisco. Furthermore the fact that New York is east of San Francisco does not qualify as a "process".


This is just deeply confused. I, of course, never claimed that New York "evolves" into San Francisco. Where do you get this stuff?

As noted in my post just above, which I submitted before reading your latest post, you have simply defined a process -- any process -- as depending on an A account of time. One wonders why you single out evolution for special treatment? I bet I can guess.

I, on the other hand, hold that the usual way we talk about a "process" is lexically dependent upon our intuition that an A account of time is correct. The A theory of time seemed much more plausible under Newton and before Einstein, but not so much now. I would maintain that we can recast "processes" to be perfectly valid under a B theory of time, but this would require lexical and terminological revisions.
davidm
Member
 
Posts: 551
Joined: 05 Feb 2011


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby davidm on August 8th, 2018, 12:25 am 

Brent696 » August 7th, 2018, 9:59 pm wrote:
If all stages exists simultaneously, no time, a big block existing all at once ...


This is NOT what block theory states. All times are NOT the same time, any more than all locations are the SAME location.

Block theory state that all times are existents, and have ontological parity. But they are still different temporal locations -- not "simultaneous." In a block everything can be defined as spacetime events, each with a unique location, each having three unique coordinates of space and one unique coordinate time.
davidm
Member
 
Posts: 551
Joined: 05 Feb 2011


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby Brent696 on August 8th, 2018, 11:28 am 

davidm » August 8th, 2018, 12:01 am

To take another quick pass at this, you've simply defined a "process" -- any process, not just evolution -- as depending on an A theory of time. This is certainly circular, but perhaps you could lay out your premises and conclusion more formally to test its apparent circularity.



Nope, I have defined Evolution as a process, a process where one thing evolves into another thing by the use of implied mechanisms, each one of which could be considered a process. The simply definition reads as "Evolution is change in the heritable characteristics of biological populations over successive generations."

Archaeologists, as they have dug deeper into the layers of the Earth, theoretically farther into the past, they have observed a progression of simply organisms in the far past, to more complex organisms in the near past. Up to this point these are generally facts, although they include an interpretation of the fossil records.

Evolution, as a theory, is the attempt to link such distinctive stages together by the use of specific mechanisms, mostly a combination of mechanisms. These distinct stages, to which Evolutionists seek to find bridges between, can be understood much differently in a block universe, even to where the bridges are no longer necessary.

Further, you have not demonstrated the validity of the B theory or block universe, and it's not even exactly clear to me that B theory and Block U are precisely equivalent. I know that the A theory and presentism are not the same, though many conflate the two.


I'm not sure why you think I have to demonstrate the validity of a block universe, Einstein and others already have, but of course like evolution it remains a theory of sorts. Lets let Wiki define it.

"""Eternalism is a philosophical approach to the ontological nature of time, which takes the view that all existence in time is equally real, as opposed to presentism or the growing block universe theory of time, in which at least the future is not the same as any other time.[1] Some forms of eternalism give time a similar ontology to that of space, as a dimension, with different times being as real as different places, and future events are "already there" in the same sense other places are already there, and that there is no objective flow of time.[2] It is sometimes referred to as the "block time" or "block universe" theory due to its description of space-time as an unchanging four-dimensional "block",[3] as opposed to the view of the world as a three-dimensional space modulated by the passage of time."""

I bold some of the definition that you seem not to grasp.

Brent696 » August 7th, 2018, 9:59 pm wrote:

If all stages exists simultaneously, no time, a big block existing all at once ...


(David) This is NOT what block theory states. All times are NOT the same time, any more than all locations are the SAME location....Block theory state that all times are existents, and have ontological parity. But they are still different temporal locations -- not "simultaneous." In a block everything can be defined as spacetime events, each with a unique location, each having three unique coordinates of space and one unique coordinate time.


Hence my need to bold parts of the definition. You still seem to be having trouble between "existing at the same time, meaning simultaneously", and your statement "All times are not the same time".

Perhaps the problem in psychological, it could be a built in resistance to accepting one can be deluded in any way. What the Block universe basically says is, your intuitive experience of time is an illusion, it is a trick of your individual consciousness. The illusion is not OUT THERE, it is IN YOU. Out there everything already is, but what happens is we take our intuitive experience which is illusionary, and IMPOSE that upon the universe.

Part of that "imposing" manifests as a need to bridge the stages of history into a view that reconciles with the illusion of time that you experience.
User avatar
Brent696
Member
 
Posts: 288
Joined: 12 Jul 2018


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby TheVat on August 8th, 2018, 11:37 am 

davidm » August 7th, 2018, 8:46 pm wrote:
Braininvat » August 7th, 2018, 3:30 pm wrote:You realize the block U theory is a deterministic one, and therefore at odds with the Christian theistic view that humans have free will.


If one is a compatibilist, then determinism does not obviate free will. Rather, under the compatibilist account, free will depends on determinism.



I'm aware, but was probing which form of free will a religious member would be arguing for. In the Christian view of moral agency, compatibilism would still render moral choices, viewed in retrospect, inevitable. Whatever act was done, the agent could have done no other, even if they felt free in their choice. This would mitigate transgression in a way that most religions would not accept. Brent seems to have his own particular revelatory experience, which sounds more compatibilist, but it's hard to tell exactly. In the traditional block U interpretation, as I've heard it, one may feel free in one's action, but one's path across the landscape of the block U, i.e. one's timeline, already exists. In that interpretation, true ontological freedom eludes us.

I'm not religious myself, nor am I settled on compatibilism, given that we don't have all the answers on quantum mechanics and the possible function of quantum superpositions. I think this leaves the door slightly ajar on free will, and possibly quantum effects could (contrary to Einstein and his quantum dice antipathy) make multiple iterations of a universe each uniquely different, a giant dice roll that never rolls the same way twice. The Big Bang could have played out differently, in terms of speciation, and so we are not the inevitable result if we run it all back and then restart the process. Whenever, say, spontaneous beta decay in a radionucleotide causes a mutation effect on a nearby strand of DNA, there is a different universe and possibly a different species if such event bifurcations proliferate.

As for simultaneity, I think it was John Wheeler who said that "time is what keeps everything from happening at once." :-)
User avatar
TheVat
Forum Administrator
 
Posts: 7258
Joined: 21 Jan 2014
Location: Black Hills


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby Brent696 on August 8th, 2018, 12:17 pm 

Braininvat » August 8th, 2018, 11:37 am

I'm aware, but was probing which form of free will a religious member would be arguing for. In the Christian view of moral agency, compatibilism would still render moral choices, viewed in retrospect, inevitable.


Most Christians try to understand the scriptures the best they can, but just as the illusion of an intuitive passage of time makes it hard for scientists to grasp reality as a block, Christians can tend towards their own moral nature as if "choosing" Christ is some virtue that they might lord over others who have not. In the OT, those chosen were chosen as they were the seed of Abraham, and thus could take part in the covenant that was between Abraham and God. In the NT and not well understood, is the fact that the covenant is between God and Christ and those who share in the nature of Christ as the Spirit was was poured out upon some, also chosen. It was never meant to be for everyone but simply for those who were called. But "Religion" takes over, the Roman church sold out to power, the rest is history.

This is just informative as it is the least understood and expressed form of Christianity, and it reconciles perfectly with a block view of time. It was always a question of Being and not morality, my understanding of physics and theology simply don't conflict. The overall exploration of this thread, if there is what I would call an honest assessment, is that if there is a block universe in place, there is simply no need to "create" a process of evolution, and "creating" is what science in trying to do as they posit all the possible mechanisms and combination of mechanisms they might be involved.

Culturally there is a strong bias as if evolution is more proven than it is, people just except it as fact because they can conceive of no other option, thinking the only other option is some six day thing where we all have to become Christians now. Take away time, as Einstein did, and we are looking at a pre-assembled package, in the center of which is consciousness.

Newtonian physics gave us evolution, Einstein's physics gave us something else but scientists are having a hard time getting past their intuitive Newtonian experience. This is what I have opened for exploration for those who can understand the block with its inherent ramifications.
User avatar
Brent696
Member
 
Posts: 288
Joined: 12 Jul 2018


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby davidm on August 8th, 2018, 3:54 pm 

Brent696 » August 8th, 2018, 9:28 am wrote:
I bold some of the definition that you seem not to grasp.


On the contrary, not only do I fully understand eternalism, I have already said, in my own words, the bolded parts you claim that I "seem not to grasp."

In the above response, I have bolded what you seem not to grasp. :)
davidm
Member
 
Posts: 551
Joined: 05 Feb 2011


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby davidm on August 8th, 2018, 4:41 pm 

Braininvat » August 8th, 2018, 9:37 am wrote: In the traditional block U interpretation, as I've heard it, one may feel free in one's action, but one's path across the landscape of the block U, i.e. one's timeline, already exists. In that interpretation, true ontological freedom eludes us.


It depends, I suppose, on what you mean by “true ontological freedom.”

If you mean that “true ontological freedom” requires more than compatibilism — that it requires libertarianism, and more, agent-causal libertarian free will; and if you further assume that libertarianism is impossible — then we do not have free will, nor are we blameworthy (or praiseworthy) for our actions. I believe it was Kant who called compatibilist accounts of free will “a wretched subterfuge.”

If, on the other hand, you believe compatibilism is sufficient to ground free will, then I do not see any way in which the Block U negates compatibilism.

Under any account of free will, we cannot change the past. Yet I don’t think anyone would argue that the ability to change the past is a necessary precondition for having some relevant form of free will.

But I would say similarly that no one can change the future, either, and this is true regardless of whether the future exists along with the past and present, as it does under the Block U account. However, the fact that we cannot change the future does not negate free will, any more than does our inability to change the past.

In fact, we cannot change the present, either — and again, this is true regardless of whether there is a block universe. One need merely run an experiment: at the indexical “now,” one raises one’s arm. Did one change the present? No. One merely made, by one’s own free act, the present be, what it actually is. The same also holds for past and future, since all those are indexical presents for their particular observers, or the temporal parts of observers living in a Block U.

Suppose I drink a cup of coffee at some arbitrary time t. I would hold that, regardless of whether the block is real, the proposition “davidm drinks coffee at time t” is timelessly true. It was true before I was born, and it will be true after I am dead. It is, was, and always will be, true.

But does that mean that I lacked the freedom to drink beer instead -- which is more likely what I would do. :-) No. It’s just that, had I chosen to drink beer, a different proposition would be timelessly true: “davidm drinks beer at time t.”

IOW, whether the block is true or not, is irrelevant to free will. I decide what to do; the propositions describing what I do, take their truths from what, in fact, I do. To suppose otherwise would be to think, quite irrationally in my view, that propositions somehow force their truth upon the events that they describe. It would be like saying that the proposition, “The sun rose this morning at 6 a.m.,” made the sun rise at 6 a.m.; whereas, of course, the proposition of the sun rising at 6 a.m. is true only in virtue of the fact that the sun did, in fact, rise at that particular time. Otherwise the proposition would be timelessly false, and a different proposition would be timelessly true.
davidm
Member
 
Posts: 551
Joined: 05 Feb 2011


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby davidm on August 8th, 2018, 4:53 pm 

Brent696 » August 8th, 2018, 10:17 am wrote:
Most Christians try to understand the scriptures the best they can, but just as the illusion of an intuitive passage of time makes it hard for scientists to grasp reality as a block, Christians can tend towards their own moral nature as if "choosing" Christ is some virtue that they might lord over others who have not. In the OT, those chosen were chosen as they were the seed of Abraham, and thus could take part in the covenant that was between Abraham and God. In the NT and not well understood, is the fact that the covenant is between God and Christ and those who share in the nature of Christ as the Spirit was was poured out upon some, also chosen. It was never meant to be for everyone but simply for those who were called. But "Religion" takes over, the Roman church sold out to power, the rest is history.


And, very conveniently, you are just one of those "chosen," right? This isn't new, and doesn't require a block universe. This is just good old-fashioned, and odious, predestinationism.


This is just informative as it is the least understood and expressed form of Christianity, and it reconciles perfectly with a block view of time. It was always a question of Being and not morality, my understanding of physics and theology simply don't conflict. The overall exploration of this thread, if there is what I would call an honest assessment, is that if there is a block universe in place, there is simply no need to "create" a process of evolution, and "creating" is what science in trying to do as they posit all the possible mechanisms and combination of mechanisms they might be involved.


And here, of course, you are hoist by your own petard, as I have already pointed out. If the block universe is correct, the universe was not created. The universe, on this account, timelessly and eternally IS -- no creator required, nor even possible.
davidm
Member
 
Posts: 551
Joined: 05 Feb 2011


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby Brent696 on August 8th, 2018, 5:55 pm 

davidm » August 8th, 2018, 4:53 pm

IOW, whether the block is true or not, is irrelevant to free will. I decide what to do;


Welcome to the illusion of the block

If the block universe is correct, the universe was not created. The universe, on this account, timelessly and eternally IS -- no creator required, nor even possible.


I think you would have this backwards,

Wiki (Eternalism), ""Augustine of Hippo wrote that God is outside of time—that time exists only within the created universe. Thomas Aquinas took the same view, and many theologians agree. On this view, God would perceive something like a block universe, while time might appear differently to the finite beings contained within it. ""

But all this talk of a Creator is taking us off topic, or at least farther back than I intend.

The subject is Evolution through the eyes of a block universe, namely that the struggle of science to bridge such gaps or explosions might have more to do with the stubborn adherence to a false sense of time than with an honest evaluation of reality itself.

The fact that there are gaps might be just more proof, of a historical kind, of a Block universe.
If Time is an illusion central to my consciousness, will I then impose my experience of time on all of reality including history, or will I actually change the way I understand reality.

The smallest living thing to date (man made)"JCVI-Syn3.0", has 473 genes and as simple as that might be compared to the 20,000 of a human being, it is not simple as a random act, it is still a intricate structure. This is a large gap from pond scum, or even two component amino acids. But in a block universe poof! everything comes into existence at once, muffins straight off the shelf, no fuss no muss.
User avatar
Brent696
Member
 
Posts: 288
Joined: 12 Jul 2018


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby Reg_Prescott on August 13th, 2018, 11:07 pm 

davidm » August 4th, 2018, 7:42 am wrote:Theories are never proved. They are defeasible models of the world that are constantly subject to revision, modification, and falsification. Evolution, however, is both a fact and a theory. It is an observed fact that populations (not individuals) evolve -- i.e. that allele frequencies change over time. The theory of evolution explains the fact of evolution, while making checkable predictions and retrodictions. So far, evolutionary theory has survived every check with flying colors.


That evolution is supposedly both a fact and a theory seems to me, speaking as a layman, patently absurd. As I'm sure we all know, though, the prima facie absurdity of the claim hasn't stopped the faithful --Stephen Jay Gould and Richard Dawkins at the vanguard -- from screaming it from the top of every hill.

Unfortunately, that evolution is both a fact and a theory, as you claim David, does not itself appear to be a generally accepted fact. I quote now from the Wiki article I've linked at the bottom of this post.

Evolution has been described as "fact and theory"; "fact, not theory"; "only a theory, not a fact"; "multiple theories, not fact"; and "neither fact, nor theory."


Even among those mentioned in the Wiki article who countenance a "fact" of evolution, there seems to be little agreement on exactly what this fact is. Is it that allele frequencies change over time, as David tells us? Is it descent with modification? Is it...

Well, read for yourselves.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolution_ ... and_theory
User avatar
Reg_Prescott
Member
 
Posts: 305
Joined: 10 May 2018


Re: Blocking Evolution

Postby Reg_Prescott on August 14th, 2018, 11:31 am 

davidm » August 4th, 2018, 7:42 am wrote:
Science does not operate on faith. Just the opposite: it is anti-faith.



Well, with respect, and this always gets me in trouble, David, I consider this arrant nonsense, at least when applied to Darwinian (or neo-Darwinian) so-called theory.

The difference, if there is one one at all, between science (here I restrict myself to Darwinian nonsense, as I see it) and religion, is that scientists of a Darwinian persuasion will pay the obligatory lip service to open-mindedness and evidence based judgement.

They might say "Show me the evidence that Darwinism is false and I'll immediately change my views"

Of course, NOTHING I present will have any effect whatsoever, at least on the more ardent defenders of Darwinism.

I've been told, I don't understand Darwin. I've been told I'm stupid or insane. I've been told I'm a closet Creationist. I've been told I'm evil. (Richards Dawkins says exactly this: to doubt Darwinian orthodoxy one must be either stupid, ignorant, insane or wicked).

This is exactly what you have have been doing to Brent: insulting the intelligence of what I see as an uncommonly intelligent man. He's religious, as I think you know; I'm not.

I often feel I might be safer to stand in central Mecca and insult Allah than to cast aspersions on Darwinian hegemony.

You do realize, David, that history shows that almost every scientific theory ever proposed was later denounced as false by later generations?

Why, then, I ask, do you place such faith in Darwinian, or evolutionary, theory? (whatever that is today)
User avatar
Reg_Prescott
Member
 
Posts: 305
Joined: 10 May 2018


Next

Return to Personal Theories

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 8 guests