Time does not exist.

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Hobbes' Choice
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Re: Time does not exist.

Post by Hobbes' Choice » Sun Oct 09, 2016 9:06 am

Terrapin Station wrote:
Hobbes' Choice wrote:Duh its an empirical claim. If you don't like it, then show me where the object is evident without a subject observing it.
I have no idea what your problem is.
Haha--I know it's an empirical claim.

This would be an empirical claim, too:

(B) "The object is evident. We do not only have access to the subject.".
No, because that would be an inherent contradiction.
Stop playing silly games.
All evidence is given us by perception, perception is the preserve of the subject.
Last edited by Hobbes' Choice on Sun Oct 09, 2016 4:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Time does not exist.

Post by Belinda » Sun Oct 09, 2016 9:08 am

Hobbes'Choice wrote:
You cannot 'become' unless you have a direction and goal. What is it that you are becoming, without a telos. SO the implication is a strong one.
As for the god as designer; there is no design.
What you become is caused by your aim and by circumstances outwith your control. Sometimes the latter are the entire cause of what you become at any given point of time. Until the moment you die you will not know what you become, and even then your interpretation is subjective.

I don't decry telos but good intentions are not always fulfilled.

Evolution of species by natural selection designs without benefit of designer.

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Re: Time does not exist.

Post by Hobbes' Choice » Sun Oct 09, 2016 9:26 am

Belinda wrote:Hobbes'Choice wrote:
You cannot 'become' unless you have a direction and goal. What is it that you are becoming, without a telos. SO the implication is a strong one.
As for the god as designer; there is no design.
What you become is caused by your aim and by circumstances outwith your control. Sometimes the latter are the entire cause of what you become at any given point of time. Until the moment you die you will not know what you become, and even then your interpretation is subjective.

I don't decry telos but good intentions are not always fulfilled.

Evolution of species by natural selection designs without benefit of designer.
We were not talking about individual subjects, but the entire universe.
I have what we like to call 'intentionality', and am consciously pursuing my personal goals. To what degree these are determined is for another discussion. But you cannot apply that to the universe as you seem to have.

As for subjective. Subjective is all I have and I do not consider that in any way a lesser assessment than the collective (or objective) assessment of human society.
If, by my own assessment I am in a state of becoming a sculptor then that is what I am.
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Londoner
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Re: Time does not exist.

Post by Londoner » Sun Oct 09, 2016 9:50 am

Terrapin Station wrote:
Londoner wrote:First, because different people report experiences differently.
Which is exactly what I expected your initial answer to be, which sets me up perfectly for this question: Given your views, how in the world can you know that there are other people in the first place, in order to know that they report experiences differently?
If you knew what my response was going to be, why not address it directly in your original post? You must gather that most of the people here will have done a bit of philosophy, so in this sort of discussion we can surely jump some of the basic moves! And what about the rest of my answer?

The answer to your question (above) is that I cannot know that there are other people having experiences in the same way I do. I posit that there are, because that model seems makes sense of my own experiences; I see other people that resemble me and they seem to act in a similar way to me, and a theory that there exist other beings similar to me works reasonably well for practical purposes.

However, as I wrote, they do not report identical experiences to me, they exhibit a certain independence from me, which is another reason for me to assume that they are 'other people' rather than objects of my own imagination. But again, I cannot know this for sure.

Now where has this got us? I wrote:

Me: It may be that there is some 'thing' out there that is in some sense the originator of those two people's experiences, but if so we can never know it.

And you replied:
As I asked Hobbes, what do you take to be empirical evidence or a logical argument for this view? In other words, how can you know that you're only experiencing your own mental-mediated representations of things?
If you are pointing out that I may also be wrong about there being there being those 'things' I call 'other people', surely you are agreeing with me?

You write of 'experiences' and 'representations of things', so you must think there are 'things' to be 'experienced'. So you are working on the assumption that there is some sort of world outside our own heads. In my answer I was also working on that assumption, but I absolutely agree that it may not be the case. But then we aren't arguing about whether we are 'only experiencing your own mental-mediated representations of things'. It is saying that we never experience anything; because there are no 'things'. There are only our own thoughts (or rather, since you don't exist, my own thoughts).

That is a position, but if it is yours then why not cut to the chase and say 'I am a solipsist'? If not, I am unclear what your question was getting at.

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Re: Time does not exist.

Post by uwot » Sun Oct 09, 2016 9:57 am

Terrapin Station wrote:I don't have any problem with considering time to be a dimension (and any dimension is going to be physical on my view, since I'm a physicalist).
Well, if you ask different physicalists what they mean by 'physical', you are likely to get different answers. It may be that you call yourself a physicalist for the same general reasons that I've thrown myself in with the empiricist mob. The objects of physics are not necessarily 'physical'; time and space, in my view, are empirical. So for that matter is gravity, electromagnetism, weak, strong, Higgs and any other force that demonstrably influences behaviour. For the purposes of practical, making things happen physics, it is irrelevant whether they actually 'exist' in a material sense, although for your hifalutin quantum field theories, the assumption is that they do, and you can't really argue with the efficacy of those.
Terrapin Station wrote:Dimensions in a physics context are simply measurements required to specify something's (relative) position. Time is a dimension in that sense.
Yup. Got that.
Terrapin Station wrote:It's just that that idea doesn't require that time is ontologically separate from events.
I think there is some consensus among the contributors to that effect. As I understand it, the evidence suggests that the big bang created at least one field that is the object of physics. The matter we experience and are made of, Fermions, are more or less stable configurations of disturbances in that, or those fields. Bosons are simply less coherent 'waves' in the same field(s). Time, on the other hand, is the interactions of all the rubble from the big bang and is entropic, because any big crunch hypothesis looks increasingly unlikely. So yeah, 'time' and 'events' are the same thing, but I think it is worth making a distinction between material and dimensional, even for physicalists; if only so that the rest of us are clear what you mean.
Terrapin Station wrote:Anyway, I'd say that the evidence that suggests nonexistence in both of those cases, so including the notion of time as some discrete "substance," is the complete absence of evidence for those things.
Granted, but as theists in particular keep reminding me, absence of proof isn't proof of absence.

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Re: Time does not exist.

Post by Terrapin Station » Sun Oct 09, 2016 11:34 am

Hobbes' Choice wrote:
Terrapin Station wrote:
Hobbes' Choice wrote:Duh its an empirical claim. If you don't like it, then show me where the object is evident without a subject observing it.
I have no idea what your problem is.
Haha--I know it's an empirical claim.

This would be an empirical claim, too:

(B) "The object is evident. We do not only have access to the subject.".
No, because that would be an inherent contradiction.
Stop playing silly games.
All evidence is given us by perception, perception is the preserve of the subject.
I don't know if you read what I wrote very carefully but there's no contradiction in it.

That all evidence is given by perception doesn't imply that the content of perception is only one's mind. It's difficult to even figure out how to write something like that from your side so that it's not nonsense, because the very idea of perception requires awareness of things that are external to us. I don't know how you'd buy the notion of perception in the first place as a representationalist, because you have no reason to even believe that there are objects to perceive.

All evidence is given by perception, but a lot of that evidence is of objects. The object is evident. That's not to say that the object is where our perception occurs. But we have access to objects via perception. There's no reason to assert that this is not the case, and of course, in post after post, you've made no attempt to either empirically or logically present a support for asserting that it isn't the case. It just seems to be something you believe for no good reason. It's something you apparently take on very strong faith, perhaps because you would be emotionally uncomfortable with some set of facts that you'd not be able to easily dismiss if you had to accept that you're aware of external reality as it is.

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Re: Time does not exist.

Post by Terrapin Station » Sun Oct 09, 2016 11:42 am

Londoner wrote: I see other people
But you don't on your view. You said that you can never know anything external to you (know by acquaintance presumably, since the other two connotations of knowledge wouldn't make sense there). Per your view, what you see are your own mental phenomena. So this is exactly what I'm challenging--not anything about others' mental experiences, but the idea of others period. What do you take as a good empirical or logical support for believing that there are others period?

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Re: Time does not exist.

Post by Terrapin Station » Sun Oct 09, 2016 12:12 pm

uwot wrote:Well, if you ask different physicalists what they mean by 'physical', you are likely to get different answers.
Yeah, that's definitely the case, although what we all agree on is that for any x that exists in any sense, x is physical.

The problem with terms is that other people use them too.

That's a problem because often people have different things in mind that they either use the term to represent or that they see as upshots or associated ideas, beliefs etc. of what they use the term to represent. But folks naturally assume that "this person" is using the term in just the same way, with just the same upshots/associations as "the previous person," and that's often not the case.

Of course on the other hand the only reason that any term is understandable in the first place is that other people use them, too. So that makes just sticking to idiosyncratic neologisms impractical.

At any rate, a lot of people parse "physicalism" as having some sort of dependent relationship on the field of physics. I don't use the term that way. My physicalism is simply an issue of me believing that only matter, relations (of matter) and processes (changing relations of matter) exist.

I disagree with many popular views in the sciences, and I have no particular allegiance to received or popular views in the sciences.
Granted, but as theists in particular keep reminding me, absence of proof isn't proof of absence.
A cliche that's clearly wrong (well, aside from the word "proof") when stated like that.

Aside from the word "proof" because empirical claims aren't provable period.

Absence of evidence, rather, is clearly evidence of absence.

If you believe that you left your car keys on a particular table, then the absence of evidence that they're on the table is clearly evidence of the absence of one's keys on the table in question. No one (sane at least) doubts that.

The cliche arises from induction rather. For anything that we can't check exhaustively, we can't say that there couldn't be evidence of the thing in question around the next corner that we do check. But, aside from supposing an infinite number of places to check, the more we do check for something in appropriate places and find an absence of evidence, the better the reason for believing that counts as evidence of absence.

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Re: Time does not exist.

Post by Londoner » Sun Oct 09, 2016 1:15 pm

Terrapin Station wrote:
Londoner wrote: I see other people
But you don't on your view. You said that you can never know anything external to you (know by acquaintance presumably, since the other two connotations of knowledge wouldn't make sense there). Per your view, what you see are your own mental phenomena. So this is exactly what I'm challenging--not anything about others' mental experiences, but the idea of others period. What do you take as a good empirical or logical support for believing that there are others period?
If you read the whole of my posts you will see that I did not say that and it would save a lot of writing.

I point out that we cannot know that other people, or anything, have a reality outside our own minds, because we cannot get outside our own minds. To put it crudely, while I am having a hallucination I cannot know it is a hallucination. I could only know it was a hallucination when I have recovered. Unfortunately, we never recover from being ourselves.

However, even lacking that certainty, I can assume that there is a reality outside my own mind. (I do so because my thoughts seem to be of different types, for example some seem to impose themselves on me whether I want them to or not (''Ouch, that hurt!") so I differentiate them from other thoughts and posit they have an external cause).

But even if I assume that there is a reality outside my mind, it does not follow that the thoughts within my mind correspond in any direct way (or at all) to that reality.

This is was what I wrote earlier, so now I am back where I started. Now, in the hope of making some progress, let me take up a phrase from your post in reply to Hobbes' Choice.
...the very idea of perception requires awareness of things that are external to us.
Its use in communication (usually) implies we are working on the assumption that there are things external to us. But the point at issue here is what you mean to imply with the word 'awareness'.

Clearly I cannot recognise something as being a perception unless I am also aware of it, in the sense of paying attention to it: 'I am now looking at something'. In that sense, 'awareness' would be a description of me, my state of mind.

But my 'awareness' of the object, the thing I am looking at, is quite different. If I am 'aware' that 'there is a tree in the garden', that has only a very tenuous connection with any particular experience. It also requires me to have far more than the simply theory that 'there are things that are external to us'.

You write that 'we have access to objects via perception'. But 'perception' just amounts to things like the stimulation of specialised nerve fibres in the eye by light. How do we get from some tiny electrical charges to objects?

The answer is that we do it. We attempt to construct a world of various types of objects in order to make some sort of sense of our raw perceptions. (And in the process, we are quite willing to include 'things' that can't be directly perceived and also to disregard some 'things' that we can perceive.) But it would be possible to construct alternative worlds that worked just as well. And if somebody suggests a world picture that works better than the one we are using, we are quite willing to adjust our notion of 'reality' accordingly.

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Re: Time does not exist.

Post by Terrapin Station » Sun Oct 09, 2016 1:22 pm

Londoner. First--one way to save yourself a lot of typing is by keeping your responses shorter. Depending on who I'm talking to, how it's progressing or not, I won't do long back and forths with some people at some times. Ultimately I'd prefer to chat, and for philosophy, I prefer to chat in the manner of Socratic dialogues. Although twitter is a bit too limited, sometimes I wish we instead had a relatively short character count limit for posts. It forces people to focus and respond directly to one thing at a time.

Anyway, so since you're basically a solipsist, let me ask you this: When you have phenomena of there being another person, or a rock, or whatever you have a phenomenon of, why do you believe that it's a mental phenomenon that you have? What would be your grounds for believing that it's not really just another person, or a rock, or whatever it seems to be?

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Re: Time does not exist.

Post by Londoner » Sun Oct 09, 2016 3:39 pm

Terrapin Station wrote:Londoner. First--one way to save yourself a lot of typing is by keeping your responses shorter. Depending on who I'm talking to, how it's progressing or not, I won't do long back and forths with some people at some times. Ultimately I'd prefer to chat, and for philosophy, I prefer to chat in the manner of Socratic dialogues. Although twitter is a bit too limited, sometimes I wish we instead had a relatively short character count limit for posts. It forces people to focus and respond directly to one thing at a time.

Anyway, so since you're basically a solipsist, let me ask you this: When you have phenomena of there being another person, or a rock, or whatever you have a phenomenon of, why do you believe that it's a mental phenomenon that you have? What would be your grounds for believing that it's not really just another person, or a rock, or whatever it seems to be?
Sometimes, philosophy requires us write using more than 28 characters. And read more than 28 characters too. Socrates did not chat, he heard people out, thought about what they said, and then responded - at whatever length was appropriate.

I have taken enormous care in several posts to explain why even if one is not a solipsist, even if we do think there are things 'out there', it does not follow that we would think our perceptions directly represent those things.

But now my post is already over the limit, so if you want to know why I think that please refer back to my previous effort.

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Re: Time does not exist.

Post by Terrapin Station » Sun Oct 09, 2016 4:01 pm

Londoner wrote:I have taken enormous care in several posts to explain why even if one is not a solipsist, even if we do think there are things 'out there', it does not follow that we would think our perceptions directly represent those things.
That's beautiful, and the lecture was filed where I believe is appropriate.

Now, how about simply, directly answering the question I had asked you, which was:

When you have phenomena of there being another person, or a rock, or whatever you have a phenomenon of, why do you believe that it's a mental phenomenon that you have? What would be your grounds for believing that it's not really just another person, or a rock, or whatever it seems to be?

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Re: Time does not exist.

Post by uwot » Sun Oct 09, 2016 4:18 pm

Terrapin Station wrote:The problem with terms is that other people use them too.
Indeed. If only people would stop trying to talk to one another.
Terrapin Station wrote:At any rate, a lot of people parse "physicalism" as having some sort of dependent relationship on the field of physics. I don't use the term that way. My physicalism is simply an issue of me believing that only matter, relations (of matter) and processes (changing relations of matter) exist.
Fair enough. Does force fit in anywhere? (I won't go into mind; not my field. Ginkgo's yer man for that on this forum.)
Terrapin Station wrote:For anything that we can't check exhaustively, we can't say that there couldn't be evidence of the thing in question around the next corner that we do check. But, aside from supposing an infinite number of places to check, the more we do check for something in appropriate places and find an absence of evidence, the better the reason for believing that counts as evidence of absence.
Increasingly physics, and science in general, is about creating algorithms to trawl through colossal amounts of data, to find patterns consistent with hypotheses. We no longer 'see' the objects we are looking for, just the circumstantial evidence for them. Plus ça change, I suppose. Before the telescope, all we could see was that Ptolemy's model worked, which was good evidence that the Earth is the centre of the universe. As for "empirical claims aren't provable period", I disagree. To me, the empirical claim is that the point of light corresponding to our understanding of Mars, say, is in a particular position relative to the fixed stars, or it isn't. Similarly, there is a pattern in the data, or there isn't. It is the metaphysical claims which cannot be proven, either until the technology is developed that will decide the matter, or never when claims are made that are not verifiable, even in principle. The latter are meaningless, to paraphrase the logical positivists. Some versions of god are of this sort, and personally, I think some hypotheses tendered by some physicists come under this umbrella.

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Re: Time does not exist.

Post by Hobbes' Choice » Sun Oct 09, 2016 4:26 pm

Hobbes' Choice wrote:
Terrapin Station wrote:
Hobbes' Choice wrote:Duh its an empirical claim. If you don't like it, then show me where the object is evident without a subject observing it.
I have no idea what your problem is.
Haha--I know it's an empirical claim.

This would be an empirical claim, too:

(B) "The object is evident. We do not only have access to the subject.".
No, because that would be an inherent contradiction.
Stop playing silly games.
All evidence is given us by perception, perception is the preserve of the subject.

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Re: Time does not exist.

Post by uwot » Sun Oct 09, 2016 4:28 pm

Terrapin Station wrote:When you have phenomena of there being another person, or a rock, or whatever you have a phenomenon of, why do you believe that it's a mental phenomenon that you have? What would be your grounds for believing that it's not really just another person, or a rock, or whatever it seems to be?
It's those bloody 'terms' again. Sorry to butt in, but you experience phenomena. The phenomenon is not the ding an sich, as Kant might have put it. Of course we assume that the phenomenon is caused by something external and 'objective', but all we know for sure is that we experience the phenomenon, as Descartes might have said.

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