It is clear to me that those who say we have free will are highly conditioned to seeing their environment as normal.
If I "choose" to jump up, I will eventually fall back down with no "choice" in the matter. With that in mind, I am doubtful that anyone believes absolutely in free will.
Theists often say that "God" can do whatever they like, as long as it doesn't cause a paradox. But how is that different from my situation?
Finally, how can I rule out the possibility that the whole universe is my will, even if I am not necessarily aware of it?
"Yes I have free will; I have no choice but to have it." ~ Christopher Hitchens
"I have noticed even people who claim everything is predestined, and that we can do nothing to change it, look before they cross the road." ~ Stephen Hawking
I hope this isn't too heavy of a thought, too challenging because of its simplicity. Thoughts like that are strenuous, and this is probably not the ideal context for them even for people who are more than willing and able to engage them.
Quantum theory has nothing to do with "not having causality" or "observer effect" or any of that quantum woo.
coeruleum talks out of her ass and she has no idea what she's talking about most of the time. You're welcome.
Prove me wrong. Now I see it's a good thing you're not a philosophy of science professor.
So which "interpretation" are we going to prefer? We're going to prefer it based on criteria like parsimony and rationality.
In quantum theory, you either believe in the Multiverse, or you don't. And if you don't believe in the Multiverse and go with the Copenhagen route, then it might have to do with "observer effect", but even then that's a misunderstanding of the Copenhagen interpretation of it.
The quantum theory is based off on the exact same experimental result from the famous double-slit experiment. The problem is how to interpret the result. One interpretation says that the reason why the photon lands on that very specific location, is because out of all sorts of possibilities, it has chosen that specific location, perhaps having an "observer" have had something to do with it, but even then that's a bit of a stretch from that interpretation. There are very few people who claim that the observer had anything to do with it. They would say that it was "random" or "uncertain".
Another interpretation says that they all happened simultaneously, in the parallel universes, and there was no need for a "wave-function collapse".
The paradox can be resolved if you come up with the "ultimate observer", or God.
Like I said, in quantum theory, you pretty much only have two options: Either you believe in the "Wigner's friend", where it will eventually "prove" the existence of a monotheistic God as the "ultimate observer", or you believe in the Multiverse because it resolves all those paradoxes, as well as it being the purest and most straightforward "interpretation" of the equations from the quantum theory.
Either are incredibly counter-intuitive and highly disturbing conclusions that we have no choice but to accept, if we were to take the quantum theory seriously as a description of reality.
The Realist's approach is to accept the Schroedinger's equations as being the literally true description of reality, that everything IS happening all at once. The cat IS both dead and alive at the same time - in parallel universes. Those are not "possibilities" that all but one suddenly disappear after the "collapse".
Or you can say that the "collapse" is responsible for the cat being dead or alive. Or your very existence depends on somebody else's observation, or God's.
2. Though not metaphysical proof for my viewpoint, observation happening on what strongly resembles a "ground of being" is a good argument for a pantheistic or panentheistic God in the form of evidence rather than proof. However, regardless of your metaphysics, it doesn't require a multiverse or the god found in the (seemingly misnamed) Kalām cosmological argument.
There's yet to be an explanation of the mechanism of how that "collapse" works, and there's yet to be a clear definition of what that "observer" means. You might say that it's human-level consciousness, and fine, but then that'll create the paradox of Wigner's friend, which can only be resolved by the "ultimate observer".
But none of this really matters, because "collapse" is just an unnecessary complication added to the theory. We can simply accept the Schroedinger's wavefunction equation as is. We never need to bother with "collapse" and just say that collapse is unnecessary or never happens in the first place. Collapse adds more problems than it solves, so we can just cut them all off with Okham's razor.
To get back to the topic, I doubt this has anything to do with the existence or the non-existence of God, but I think what we can all agree from quantum theory is that it allows for the multiple possibilities in the future, or we might say that quantum theory allows free-will in the subjective sense.
Schroedinger's wavefunction tells us that a photon or an electron or whatever are actually in all sorts of places simultaneously. And that's weird, because a single electron can't be in multiple places at the same time. Collapse is a way to "resolve" that, by saying that say, at the moment of observation or measurement, the wavefunction equation somehow magically "collapses" and somehow stops working, and we only see an electron in a single location, instead of many.
Of course, that just seems like common-sense. But scientific theories have always defied our preconceptions of "common sense". If we were to take the Schroedinger's wavefunction literally, then we have no choice but to accept that those electrons are indeed in all sorts of places simultaneously. Or we could say that the world "splits" into "many-worlds".
Being a Realist means taking that equation seriously as a literal description of reality. The idea of having an unexplained, magical mechanism of "collapse" is just bizarro.
It's not a magical mechanism of "collapse." It's a quantum object being forced to act as a classical one by being acted on by classical forces (the eye/instruments.) A quantum world may be equivalent to many classical worlds, but we can still say they're in many places within a single universe or we wouldn't even be having this discussion. I guess making things happen by looking at them could be considered magic like stage magic or "occult"/hidden forces, but it's also perfectly explicable and the accepted hypothesis outside of your cult and the pseudo-Kalām people's other cult.
So, you hate God and magic, which are not scientific but don't contradict science's mere existence, but unfalsifiable universes, which remarkably do contradict science's mere existence, are OK. Gotchya.
Look here for a pretty good explanation of how all the equations work or what it is actually saying:
And Many-Worlds does make actual predictions, and it actually is testable. It would be testable once we have quantum computers (and apparently we already have one working on a small scale).
This was right on your linked Quora page. My parents tried to push me into theoretical physics starting in middle school, which I didn't want to do because all the new theories seemed misguided at the time and that's not worth staying locked up in your head over. All I have to say is you'd be better off learning more about physics before you talk about it. The universal wavefunction for particles would just be the natural result of a deterministic universe and with enough ingenuity could be smuggled into a non-deterministic one in ways less annoying than unfalsifiable entire universes or the "Kalām" cosmological argument but with observers instead of "causes."Originally Posted by [COLOR=#333333
Also, I can personally perceive and understand what quantum weirdness is on a classical level and it's almost laughably trivial.
Please, the other worlds interpretation is nonsense. Wavefunctions do have other states, and staring at a fan with the light on among many other things will show you several of them, but those other states aren't in other coherent worlds. They cohere in the actual world, which is what "quantum" means by definition. You could call the other worlds non-actual worlds, but then you're more or less substituting the pseudo-Kalām God for the Devil if you have an even cursory understanding of what "actual" means in philosophy, how that applies to a world, and how the Devil/demonic/evil is defined in various theistic philosophies. So no, I don't support using God or the Devil as a pseudo-scientific explanation when I know the proper scientific one.
In that case, I can't wait for the singularity. I'll turn into our demon overlord and we'll get to blow it up and it'll take all the "transhumanists" with it. Heroes of myth will be put to shame, but at the same time life will go on pretty much as normal after we blow it up.
"Collapse" is just a stubborn refusal to admit that the Schroedinger's wave function equation might be true, which you know, we're kinda forced to admit that it is true.
The many-worlds interpretation is simply the only "interpretation" of quantum physics without having the baggage of all the nasty paradoxes, like the Wigner's friend or the EPR paradox. Those paradoxes exist because "collapse" is just an unnecessary complication.
Anyway, the way we might be able to test many-worlds is interesting. If we have a quantum computer working, then we'll have a very large object, a quantum computer, in a superposition state. And if we have human-level consciousness AI running on that quantum computer, then we'll have an AI experiencing quantum interference or "quantum consciousness". Which the "collapse" might say that that very consciousness will cause "collapse". And so if "collapse" is true then the AI will... die. Or at least it will experience a different kind of consciousness.
Or even if that's unlikely, then how the heck can we even have quantum computers running in the the first place, without utilizing the power of the atoms in the "other" universes? And it does seem like we'll have quantum computers actually running.
Well, "many worlds" is defined as non-interacting worlds. I told you the "other worlds" are easily perceptible... as shadows. Physicists seem to have a lot of problems with shadows in general.
Personally I like the many-worlds interpretation or some variant but as I understand it, it is as equally plausible as the Copenhagen interpretation, but Copenhagenists don't like it because they consider it unappealing.
For me, all possible outcomes are what will happen, or they would not be possible. (I ascribe to the Level IV multiverse of Max Tegmark and Hugh Everett's intrepretation).
Also, if a thing exists, it is meaningless to say it is contingent: it can only be necessary. And you cannot make a thing exist simply by calling it necessary.
I think Realists like Einstein were right in assuming that Copenhagen was basically nonsense, and that quantum theory was incomplete and needed more understanding.
Einstein said, "A moon does not cease to exist, if you don't look at it!", which is a Realist interpretation that things objectively exist whether we have anything to do with it, or not. Saying that our observations have something to do with it is a Subjectivist interpretation.
He also said, "God does not play dice", because he doubted the supposedly random and probabilistic nature of quantum theory, which would do away with things like locality and causality, which would violate many principles, including elementary rationality.
The thing with probabilities is that it's subjective, and it's not referring to anything that's occurring in the physical world. It's referring to our subjective view of things, such as this universe's view of the multiverse.
There's no way to logically prove God until you can at least show sufficient evidence of a supernatural realm. Until that time, any argument for God which does not first show evidence of supernaturalness is baseless.
The bible doesn't cut it in so far as evidence of God goes. A book about supernatural phenomena is not evidence of supernatural phenomena which we can then base a logical argument for God on.
Millions of books have been written by men, women alike, and published for distribution to the public. Thousands of books contain stories about Gods, Mythologies, magical worlds, and pretty much anything else you can imagine. People pick up a pen and write words onto page and tell stories all in conformity with space and time. Writing is a craft. Publishing books is a business. The bible is the result of the same action sets by which books came into existence before and after.
So whenever a Christian says the bible is proof of God, they are not using logic. That is not a logical argument. It's merely a baseless assumption. Assumptions do not equate to evidence. You can pile up as many assumptions as you want or as many congregations as you want, and that doesn't mean shit in terms of logically proving God.
Likewise for Muslims, Jews, Hindus and everybody else. Probably its human nature to create these mythologies. The Greeks had their Zeus on Mt. Olympus, the Christians have their Jesus in Heaven. So on.
FWIW let's not forget that science demonstrated to a 100 percent degree of scientific certainty that virgin birth and human resurrection are biologically impossible. Furthermore, the earth is billions of years old. So anybody in today's day and age who believes in the Bible must be operating inside of some heavily fortified mental weaknesses. If they are being honest with themselves, the religious person has no method of rationalizing God except through faith. Given that faith and intelligence are fundamentally incompatible, no intelligent argument for God is possible.
I have an intuitive relationship with the Universe.
I find intellectualization of "God" to be a waste of time. Life is better experienced.
"Talent hits a target no one else can hit; genius hits a target no one else can see." - Schopenhauer
I dunno what kind of conflict and shit has occurred in the last several pages of this thread, haven't read it. But this quote I came across on tumblr reminded me and seemed relevant.
“Well, if there were a divinity then it would be utterly separate from both scientific enquiry and human longing… If there is a god, we should not be able to find it. No divinity in which I would wish to believe would declare itself by means of what we would recognize as evidence. […] If I detected proof of a deity, I would distrust that deity on the grounds that a god should be smarter than that.”
— Robert Macfarlane, Underland: A Deep Time Journey
Why is it "smart" to remain undetected? I do think it's more fitting of a God, to be beyond comprehension
For anyone who gives a shit... I've reached a point where the question in the op is personally irrelevant and I can suspend disbelief with regard to religious concepts if necessary. But I have a personal conception of a God with an infinite degree of understanding that gets in the way of having any rules (though I feel compelled to emulate that and forgive and be loving, which i see as a sort of loose "rule" in a sense)
Basically newtonian physics says all future and past events exists as is. Determinstic universe, but not because of a domino effect. More so, all exists in time and only your speed in relation to the event snap shots you into a time line of past present future.
Einstein thought the Universe was blocked as well. Not open and free. No hidden variables. All constants. All givens. What was going to happen did happen, no matter how randomness got it there.
In this way, the cats' future is already determined and really the question of dead or alive is just a function of our limited capacity as deluded creatures who believe in free-will.
I don't know, something like that.
What blows my mind is that the light photon that leaves the star arrives in my eye at the same time.
Literally that light is instantly in my mind from its perspective, even if separated by millions of years. From the light's point of view, everything is instant.
I think pure materialists are kinda of smart, but something pitiful there as well. The reason they even think that way was because of yesterday's superstition.
As a goatherd learns his trade by goat, so a writer learns his trade by wrote.