The Explanation of Life

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mysterio448
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Re: The Explanation of Life

Post by mysterio448 » Sat Oct 01, 2016 3:04 am

Dalek Prime wrote: What is the point of existence to something that doesn't need to exist. I'm trying to gently point out it doesn't need to be. Nothing missed, nothing lost. It's not circular at all. You just don't want to see the conclusion of the reasoning, or cannot do so.

On reflection, I don't think you'll get what I'm driving at, so forget it.
You say that human existence doesn't need to exist. The way I understand it, necessity is a property of order. Through order, things happen because they must. Through chaos, things happen because they can. You fail to understand the concept because you still see everything from the perspective of order and you neglect the chaotic side of reality. In one sense, our existence could be interpreted as the result of meaningless accidents. Perhaps a meteorite hit the Earth carrying organic molecules, perhaps a chance bolt of lightning hit a pool of complex molecules, mistakes in genetic replication lead to phenotype changes and adaptations. All of this sounds like meaningless accidents, but that is only one side of the dynamics that are at work.

Sometimes we fail to see things, not because they are not there but because they are not where we expect them to be. You fail to understand my answer because you are blinded by your own expectations.

Terrapin Station wrote:
mysterio448 wrote:I don't understand your objection. You don't specify what it is about life that I failed to explain, or what other kind of explanation you are looking for. I explained a certain set of dynamics that is fundamental to reality itself and then I explained how the existence of life follows logically from those dynamics. What is there that I should explain?
The part I emphasized there is precisely what you didn't do. What specifically in your account to you take to be a statement of how an order/chaos basis logically implies life?

Note that to be a logical implication, it needs to be a logically valid argument. Validity, in logic, is defined as "Impossible for the premises to be true and the conclusion to be false."

I think in order to understand why the order/chaos basis implies life, we need to better understand what life is. Life is not just one thing but is a complex set of processes and qualities; therefore it would help if we break life down into simpler parts. I mentioned some of these qualities in a previous post: "We can see this harmony between order and chaos in the delicate balance between life and death, creation and destruction, that exists in nature. The survival of some members of a population often depends on the death of others. Some species emerge while others go extinct. We can see this harmony in our very way of life: in order to maintain our own bodies we must kill, butcher and dissolve the bodies of other living beings. We can see this harmony in our own bodies: some of our hairs die and fall off as others emerge, dying skin cells are replaced by new ones, internal organ tissues are likewise in a constant state of renewal. Death and life, destruction and creation cooperate together. This is all part of the harmony/unity between order and chaos." Also, life is a far-from-equilibrium dissipative system: an organism's body is essentially condensed order which maintains that order by proliferating chaos (ie, entropy) around itself.

The point I am getting at is that when you break down what life is at its simplest level, we can see that it does follow logically from the order/chaos relationship. Life is one of many phenomena in the cosmos (along with stars, galaxies, etc.) which are essentially a reflection or echo of this order/chaos relationship.

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Greta
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Re: The Explanation of Life

Post by Greta » Sat Oct 01, 2016 7:30 am

Dalek Prime wrote:What is the point of existence to something that doesn't need to exist. I'm trying to gently point out it doesn't need to be. Nothing missed, nothing lost.
It's not a matter of what needs to be so much as what is inevitable.

I love this talk - "Inevitable life?". How right he is I don't know (I suspect he is), but I think the general principle of inevitability under certain conditions would hold. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ElMqwgkXguw

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Terrapin Station
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Re: The Explanation of Life

Post by Terrapin Station » Sat Oct 01, 2016 12:10 pm

mysterio448 wrote:
Terrapin Station wrote:
mysterio448 wrote:I don't understand your objection. You don't specify what it is about life that I failed to explain, or what other kind of explanation you are looking for. I explained a certain set of dynamics that is fundamental to reality itself and then I explained how the existence of life follows logically from those dynamics. What is there that I should explain?
The part I emphasized there is precisely what you didn't do. What specifically in your account to you take to be a statement of how an order/chaos basis logically implies life?

Note that to be a logical implication, it needs to be a logically valid argument. Validity, in logic, is defined as "Impossible for the premises to be true and the conclusion to be false."

I think in order to understand why the order/chaos basis implies life, we need to better understand what life is. Life is not just one thing but is a complex set of processes and qualities; therefore it would help if we break life down into simpler parts. I mentioned some of these qualities in a previous post: "We can see this harmony between order and chaos in the delicate balance between life and death, creation and destruction, that exists in nature. The survival of some members of a population often depends on the death of others. Some species emerge while others go extinct. We can see this harmony in our very way of life: in order to maintain our own bodies we must kill, butcher and dissolve the bodies of other living beings. We can see this harmony in our own bodies: some of our hairs die and fall off as others emerge, dying skin cells are replaced by new ones, internal organ tissues are likewise in a constant state of renewal. Death and life, destruction and creation cooperate together. This is all part of the harmony/unity between order and chaos." Also, life is a far-from-equilibrium dissipative system: an organism's body is essentially condensed order which maintains that order by proliferating chaos (ie, entropy) around itself.

The point I am getting at is that when you break down what life is at its simplest level, we can see that it does follow logically from the order/chaos relationship. Life is one of many phenomena in the cosmos (along with stars, galaxies, etc.) which are essentially a reflection or echo of this order/chaos relationship.
You claimed that you did present a logically valid argument for why life would follow, or be implied, by an order/chaos relationship. I said that that is precisely what you did not do. (Hence why "order/chaos dichotomy, hence life" is a non-sequitur.) So I told you to specify where in your post you believe you presented a logically valid argument. I have to conclude from your response to this request that you don't even know what a logically valid argument is, because nothing you typed above points to a logically valid argument you made for why life follows from an order/chaos dichotomy, and nothing you're typing in the post I'm quoting here is a logically valid argument for that either.

So again, what is the logically valid argument you made, or that you're now making per the request, for why life follows from an order/chaos dichotomy, or do you not have a logically valid argument for that? (Or do you not know what a logically valid argument is in order to know?)

mysterio448
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Re: The Explanation of Life

Post by mysterio448 » Sun Oct 02, 2016 3:49 am

Terrapin Station wrote:You claimed that you did present a logically valid argument for why life would follow, or be implied, by an order/chaos relationship. I said that that is precisely what you did not do. (Hence why "order/chaos dichotomy, hence life" is a non-sequitur.) So I told you to specify where in your post you believe you presented a logically valid argument. I have to conclude from your response to this request that you don't even know what a logically valid argument is, because nothing you typed above points to a logically valid argument you made for why life follows from an order/chaos dichotomy, and nothing you're typing in the post I'm quoting here is a logically valid argument for that either.

So again, what is the logically valid argument you made, or that you're now making per the request, for why life follows from an order/chaos dichotomy, or do you not have a logically valid argument for that? (Or do you not know what a logically valid argument is in order to know?)


I believe I have answered your question satisfactorily in my previous post. I think the problem here is not any shortcomings in my argument but is your inability to read carefully.

I am not quite sure what kind of "logically valid argument" you are looking for. There are different types of logic. You seem to be looking for something that fits under the category of deductive logic. However, deductive logic, as I understand it, requires facts and I do not have any actual facts regarding the current subject. But what I do have is observations, which is something that would be more appropriate to inductive logic. With inductive logic, there are no facts and no hard conclusions; either you find a particular argument convincing or you don't. Just because my argument does not fit into your narrow framework of deductive, categorical, syllogistic logic does not necessarily mean it is not still a logically valid argument.

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Terrapin Station
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Re: The Explanation of Life

Post by Terrapin Station » Sun Oct 02, 2016 12:14 pm

mysterio448 wrote:I believe I have answered your question satisfactorily in my previous post. I think the problem here is not any shortcomings in my argument but is your inability to read carefully.

I am not quite sure what kind of "logically valid argument" you are looking for. There are different types of logic. You seem to be looking for something that fits under the category of deductive logic. However, deductive logic, as I understand it, requires facts and I do not have any actual facts regarding the current subject. But what I do have is observations, which is something that would be more appropriate to inductive logic. With inductive logic, there are no facts and no hard conclusions; either you find a particular argument convincing or you don't. Just because my argument does not fit into your narrow framework of deductive, categorical, syllogistic logic does not necessarily mean it is not still a logically valid argument.
Which tells me that you do not understand the idea of logically "following" or logical implication or logical validity--and even after I explicitly defined validity for you above. (Again, the standard/conventional definition of logical validity is this: "An argument is valid just in case it's impossible for the premises to be true and the conclusion false" (where traditionally, "and" there is treated rather as and/or)).

That doesn't go for inductive or abductive logic, but validity is not very well-defined for inductive or abductive logic. (There have been attempts to come up with formulae for inductive and abductive validity, but they generally wind up relying on subjective criteria or Bayesian probability (which hinges on subjective criteria in many opinions, including my own), and which do not seem to be at all close to the idea of (deductive) validity, and which hence should be questionable re being called "validity" in the first place.)

You'd not be using induction for your argument, by the way, but abduction. Abductive reasoning does not involve validity in anything like the deductive sense. In abductive reasoning, the premises do not guarantee the conclusion (which in a nutshell is what validity is--a guaranteed conclusion given the premises at hand. That's what it means for something to follow or be implied.) In abductive reasoning, generally the idea is to aim for the simplest and/or most likely explanation for something, but I'd not say that you've presented a case for a chaos/order dichotomy being the simplest/most likely explanation for life. (Not the least reason for which is that you're using a fuzzy, dubious chaos/order distinction in the first place.)

In any event, this is probably all a waste of time on my part. As is par for the course almost 100% of the time, you're not actually looking for constructive criticism to guide the production of a better, more persuasive argument. You're basically looking for ego gratification.

mysterio448
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Re: The Explanation of Life

Post by mysterio448 » Sun Oct 02, 2016 3:33 pm

Terrapin Station wrote: . . . but I'd not say that you've presented a case for a chaos/order dichotomy being the simplest/most likely explanation for life. (Not the least reason for which is that you're using a fuzzy, dubious chaos/order distinction in the first place.)
Out of everything you wrote, this part of your post is the only thing that really addresses my previous post. Yet even here you do not actually explain why my argument is ineffective, you just keep saying that you don't like it. This seems a bit like trolling behavior to me.

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Terrapin Station
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Re: The Explanation of Life

Post by Terrapin Station » Sun Oct 02, 2016 4:50 pm

mysterio448 wrote:you just keep saying that you don't like it. This seems a bit like trolling behavior to me.
So not only were you not qualified to write what you attempted to write, but your reading comprehension sucks, and you have zero interest in actually learning about the field you were pretending to engage in. Good thing you asked for feedback on your work.

Dalek Prime
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Re: The Explanation of Life

Post by Dalek Prime » Mon Oct 03, 2016 4:40 pm

Greta wrote:
Dalek Prime wrote:What is the point of existence to something that doesn't need to exist. I'm trying to gently point out it doesn't need to be. Nothing missed, nothing lost.
It's not a matter of what needs to be so much as what is inevitable.

I love this talk - "Inevitable life?". How right he is I don't know (I suspect he is), but I think the general principle of inevitability under certain conditions would hold. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ElMqwgkXguw
I can accept that. Stir a bunch of chemicals long enough, somethings bound to crop up.

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