Closer to Truth: How Much More to Physical Reality?

S

Sciborg_S_Patel

#1
New (to me at least) interview series from Closer to Truth -

"What is the farthest extent of the physical world, not only cosmologically across the universe but also conceptually across laws of nature? Can there be radical new discoveries in the 21st century as relativity and quantum mechanics were in the 20th century? Some speculate that a true understanding of consciousness will require laws as yet unknown."
 
#4
I recently put a comment on their Facebook page saying that until Lawrence Kuhn starts looking more seriously at some evidence, and being more honest, he will never get closer to truth. He is dismissive of NDEs and reincarnation stating about the latter something like 'the evidence for it just isn't there'.
 
S

Sciborg_S_Patel

#5
I recently put a comment on their Facebook page saying that until Lawrence Kuhn starts looking more seriously at some evidence, and being more honest, he will never get closer to truth. He is dismissive of NDEs and reincarnation stating about the latter something like 'the evidence for it just isn't there'.
To be fair though I give him credit for putting a lot of parapsychology people in the videos?
 
#7
To be fair though I give him credit for putting a lot of parapsychology people in the videos?
I agree, I give him credit for even investigating these topics, and interviewing both "proponents" and "skeptics." At the same time, I completely understand Steve's comment because I often get the same feeling--that he won't get any closer to the truth until he ditches, or at least suspends for the sake of objectivity, some of his obvious bias towards materialism.

Cheers,
Bill
 
#8
Yeah but how much does he really listen to what they're saying? I've listened to quite a lot of his stuff now and I think he's as blinkered as many others while pretending to be open minded. Not saying he's being dishonest, it's probably subconscious.
Well said. I've come to the same conclusion.

Cheers,
Bill
 
#10
I found the interviews profound in refuting anyone having any certainty regarding a materialist worldview.

Even Krauss was magnanimous on this point even if that wasn't his intention.

The big takeaway for me from the entire string of interview is: We have no idea what is fundamental. Sure, this leaves open the possibility that unifying natural or physical theories may emerge, but that's not empirical, its a belief, a faith, a dogma. There may also not be what I wish for there to be (purpose, meaning, etc.) but neither side has made a definitive case.

I'm beginning to wonder if the search will prove fruitful, at least in the present lifespans we're experiencing.

I have a very good friend who has been a practicing Buddhist for almost 30 years now. (Its been a near fulltime pursuit for him including multi-month retreats, leading centres, etc.) We grew up together in the U.S. both in largely secular households. Both of us were interested in the "bigger questions" but neither great candidates for traditional faith-based religions. He's a super bright guy (PhD) who's never been overly interested in the pursuit of evidence from a traditional scientific or "proof" perspective since his indoctrination in Buddhism. He continues to feel that he's experienced "truth" in another way and the material explanation or rationale simply isn't of great import to him.

Meanwhile his buddy (me), continues to look for evidence of "more". Perhaps I should be listening more closely to him. ;)
 
#12
I'm beginning to wonder if the search will prove fruitful, at least in the present lifespans we're experiencing.
I'm not sure science would be able to recognise it if we did get to the fundamental level. How would it be defined? After all, there are a small number of stable particles at the moment (with little chance of more to come), whereas the most recent discoveries decay in 10^(-25) second!

David
 
#13
Science found what is fundamental a long time ago. Founders of quantum mechanics concluded consciousness is fundamental and based those conclusions on empirical observations.

https://sites.google.com/site/chs4o8pt/eminent_researchers#researchers_plank

Max Planck
(Nobel Prize for Physics)

...
I regard consciousness as fundamental. I regard matter as derivative from consciousness. We cannot get behind consciousness. Everything that we talk about, everything that we regard as existing, postulates consciousness. As quoted in The Observer (25 January 1931)​
And...

As a man who has devoted his whole life to the most clear headed science, to the study of matter, I can tell you as a result of my research about atoms this much: There is no matter as such. All matter originates and exists only by virtue of a force which brings the particle of an atom to vibration and holds this most minute solar system of the atom together. We must assume behind this force the existence of a conscious and intelligent mind. This mind is the matrix of all matter.

Das Wesen der Materie [The Nature of Matter], speech at Florence, Italy (1944) (from Archiv zur Geschichte der Max-Planck-Gesellschaft, Abt. Va, Rep. 11 Planck, Nr. 1797)​

https://sites.google.com/site/chs4o8pt/eminent_researchers#researchers_erwin

Erwin Schrödinger
(Nobel Prize for Physics)

...
"Consciousness cannot be accounted for in physical terms. For consciousness is absolutely fundamental. It cannot be accounted for in terms of anything else."
 
#14
#15
We have no idea what is fundamental.
Mainstream science and mainstream western analytic philosophy, for the most part, have limited the fundamentals to physicality. I offer that mainstream philosophy is beginning to embrace informational realism - where information is added to the list of "real things" with matter and energy. (K. Sayre 1976 and L. Floridi 2003).

I am all wound-up having just read parts of Dan Dennett's brand new summary publication on mind. In it, Dennett cites almost all of the authors and themes I have been ranting about on this forum. Floridi has two listings in the index of From Bacteria to Bach and there is large reliance of the concept of affordance, with citation to J.J. Gibson! Dennett is a Barwise Prize winner and I look forward to his up-to-date assessment of the current counter-arguments to his stances.

In footnote #29, Dennett feels he has to paraphrase and then deny the Gibsonian fundamental insight - while including the computable part of Gibson's theory as supporting his own constructed worldview. Dennett declares: "The slogan of radical Gibsonians says it all: ""It's not what is in your head; it's what your head is in(to)."" I am not endorsing this view."

As someone who is sure that mental activity changes real world probabilities directly, Dennett is stuck with the tools of information science being his go-to defense - yet doesn't embrace the ontological reality behind their activity. Once information is treated as ontologically real and able to be processed by minds in a unique way - materialism is over.
 
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