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Is Time an Infinite Set of Moments?

November 9, 2015 2 comments

…or is the whole notion of an infinite set a paradox?

Since a set is by definition a defining of a boundary, whenever we talk about sets which are infinite we are talking about a boundary containing unbounded contents. Such a boundary makes it necessary that boundary-making itself is presumed to be outside of things being bound, i.e. it is taken as axiomatic that boundary making is part of a theory which does not change anything except our own understanding.

Things get murky however, when we consider time an infinite set. In Zeno’s Paradox of the Tortoise and Achilles, for example, the idea of an infinite set is used to trick us into thinking that motion is impossible. The logic is that for something to move one unit of distance, it must first move an infinite number of smaller distances. We can reverse this logic, however, and say that to divide one distance into an infinite number of smaller distances in the first place would take an infinitely long time if we had to actually make those measurements in some way, provided each measurement takes a non-zero amount of time.

Here is the difference between the map and the territory. Actually moving across a distance is a ‘territory’; a concrete reality. The idea that there is some number of points in which could be measured along that distance is a theoretical abstraction. When we apply the abstraction of infinity to the reality of concrete phenomena, we get paradox. The tortoise’s lead appears to always be getting smaller and smaller, but is still a nonzero fraction of the total distance ahead of Achilles, no matter how much faster Achilles is. What distracts us is that we are taking our own measurement for granted. Yes, it’s true that each measurement at time t will find the tortoise ahead of Achilles if we keep giving the tortoise a fraction of his original head start after calculating Achilles position, but infinity doesn’t end at that measurement. Infinity means not only that there will always be a measurement where the tortoise is ahead, it also means that there will always be an interval after the measurement where Achilles overtakes the velocity challenged reptile. In short, an infinite set means that the set always will extend beyond itself.

The physical allegory of the infinite set is a universe of stars and galaxies which expands into an infinity of empty space.  But can emptiness really envelope things or is it the expansion of things which exists on its own without any envelope? Is the assumption of empty space really a projection of our own intellectual expectations of set-making? I think that it is important to see that Einsteinian spacetime calculations would work the same either way. Spacetime need not be a literal container of mass-energy, if mass-energy is already entangled at superliminal rates. It makes it easy to think of General Relativity as referring to a spatiotemporal entity (a ‘reference mollusk’ as Einstein called it, or a Minkowski space), but the reality may be that spacetime is nothing more than the influence that the entangled consensus of mass-energetic relations has on itself. This way, no envelope of infinite emptiness is required around the Big Bang, and the vacuum can leave its quantum contents behind to revert to a true void. The vacuum energy gets turned inside out…it’s not inside of spacetime, it’s inside of relativity, i.e. universal perceptual entanglement.

Eastern and Western Eternity

If the Western view of time is an unlimited set of (limited) moments, then eternity is purely conceptual – the perpetually incomplete ‘set-hood’ of that set. The Western sense of eternity is also of perpetually filling itself with more and more clock ticks. Eastern mystics have promised instead that the fundamental truth of nature is the antithesis of that: A timeless connectedness of all things, or a universal connectability (The Force, Field, Love*, God) from which all ‘things’ are seemingly detached. Such a detachment is described as an illusion or temporary masking of underlying unity which remains eternal and pervasive. From the Eastern view, it is not space and time which contain all phenomena, but rather times and spaces are emergent dissociations within the grand phenomenality.

With the advent of General Relativity, the pendulum of Western thought began unknowingly to swing Eastward. Eternity came to be seen as a universal 4D manifold which distorts rates and lengths of physical processes. The distortions are understood to be relative to frames of reference; they are the ‘appearances’ of each frame to any other rather than a fixed physical property common to all frames. Frames themselves are, like the tortoise, given an unfair advantage of inheriting our ignorance of the nature of perception. Physics has attributed a frame-making capacity from a purely theoretical warrant, a warrant which magically acquires real powers of perceptual transformation (Lorentz contraction/dilation) which define the universe.

Some will complain that inertial or Galilean frames have nothing to do with perception, that they are tied only to linear velocity, however this takes velocity relations for granted in the same way that infinite sets take sets for granted. Here is where Relativity and QM completely agree. They both hinge on the concrete physical fact of measurement as the relation between properties such as space, time, position, and momentum. The measurement is a thing that separates the uncollapsed theoretical wave from the concrete wave-effects which are common to matter.

I submit that measurement itself is only the superficial way of understanding what is going on behind SR, GR, and QM. What makes measurement possible – all measurement – is an intrinsic relatability or sense which pervades all of physics. It is only parsimonious to assume at this point that this relatability is identical to the awareness which underlies our own conscious experience.

As it stands now, theoretical physics must resort to a kind of dualism where the idea of an ‘observer’ is somehow presumed separate from conscious observation. Any deviation from this premise is taboo and treated with antipathy. The Western imagination has been captured by positivism, so that all legitimate phenomena begin with an assumption of being separable from phenomenology. This unfortunately leaves phenomenology itself orphaned from physics, and the purest contents of conscious experience orphaned from legitimacy. We turn to the idea of “emergence” to reclaim some semblance of coherence, but emergence itself is no more physical or derivable from logic than consciousness itself.

Relativity applies to instantaneity as well as simultaneity.

To further bridge the Einsteinian notion of eternity with the Eastern one, I suggest a relativity of instantaneity. We can see from time lapse photography, for example, that different rates of exposure present nature at speeds of time. If we had nanobots we could surely step down our own body motions so that we could interact remotely with nanoscale objects at scales and speeds which would not be possible to us on the macro scale.

We can also see how the ocean appears to slow to a crawl when seen from the air. Interestingly, the trails that boats make in their wake appear to flow against a solid background of standing ocean waves.

image

In this photo you can’t see it, but next time you are flying over the water, notice how the narrow wake tracks which cross-cross the static ocean shimmer with movement. I’m curious about the physics of this – is it the distance of the plane or the speed which averages out the speed of water, and then the motion of the boat which makes some of the speed visible? Some kind of phase-cancellation?

It is this kind of transformation which I’m referring to as the relativity of instantaneity. The scope of the instant depends on perspective, and physics, having no preferred perspective, can have no way to define any separation between instants or any set which unites them. In this way, emergent properties themselves emerge from perception.

East vs West

I suspect that both views of time are reflections of the perspective from which they emerge. Eastern or Empathizing psychologies focus on the unity of categories in the category-making mind itself while Western, Systemizing modes focus on impersonal categories, the origin of which is seen as irrelevant. As the two modes have grown apart, they are no longer able to locate each other without distorting them into a straw man. The Western mind sees the Eastern view as an overestimation of our own presence (including the present moment) while the Eastern mind sees the fatal flaw of the Western effort to deflate the presence of the now and its presenter. Interestingly, the antipathy flips in the assignment of blame, with the Western skeptic taking personal umbrage at the individuals who they see as peddlers of ‘woo-woo’ superstition and postmodern ‘word salad’. By contrast, the Eastern mystic sees the Western resistance as a function of impersonal forces of spiritual immaturity. This dynamic of projection and inversion is a good place to study the lensing of consciousness. The model which I propose suggests that studying how people argue will show that fundamentalist positions on either side will have more in common with each other neurologically than there will be differences. From there we can begin to map the blind spot of the Western approach as it cascades down through academic policies, experiment design, and finally economics, and politics.

The Western approach is intrinsically bottom up in that it begins with a collection of external particulars and then extrapolates generalities and universal laws. Scientific thought is an analytic introspection which is intended to generate a synthetic ‘extraspection’. Our naive, introspective sense of the present time is as Edwin Schrodinger and Ken Wilber point out is “the only thing that has no end”. Meaning that we literally cannot locate within the present any beginning or ending. Only memories within the present which seem to explain things outside of the present can be found:

We dissipate our energies in fantasy mists of memories and expectations, and thus deprive the living present of its fundamental reality and reduce it to a “specious present”, a slender present that endures a mere one or two seconds, a pale shadow of the eternal Present.
-Ken Wilber, No Boundary

It seems clear to me that the Western view is dominated by the specific function of the intellect, which is to isolate problems and analyze them sequentially. Using the intellect to analyze itself, we conflate mental kinds of functions with nature in general and have learned to mistake this map of our own map-making for the territory. Because the Western mind identifies with itself rather than with the consciousness behind thought, it inverts our own existence into a ‘specious presence’. First an orphaned soul in an Enlightened machine, then a self-modeling semantic mechanism, the personal presence has now been so aggressively deflated that many insist that it has no existence at all.

If the Western view overlooks the magnitude of significance of the present in its modeling of time, the Eastern view overlooks the overwhelming influence of non-human scales of the present in the universe. The human scale of ‘now’ is overly preferred, so that the Western half of the universe, with its bottom up chains of causality, can be discounted irrationally (hence the woo-woo). This means that the vital and important contributions of science and technology can be dismissed by the Eastern approach, thus losing all credibility with Western thinkers. The sentiment that thoughts create reality is straw-manned to imply that human thoughts create all reality, when the truth is that human influence may be both more powerful and less powerful than we imagine.

Coming Together Over Time

I propose that the way to transcend the problematic notions of time in both the Western and Eastern modes is to see time as the “most common sense” through which eternity ‘pretends’ to be each moment, and how the eternal moment pretends to its own eachness. Time is what limits the unlimited and opens the limited to the possibility of the infinite.

Because the Western view of time has resulted in an all-but-insignificant present, it has contrived an all-but insignificant subjective conscious presence to act as an almost-disposable timekeeper. The ‘observer’ in physics is naught but a convergence of particular coordinates…coordinates which themselves are only defined by there own axiomatic coordination. The cosmos appears as an unorchestrated orchestration…an autoverse rather than universe.

The Eastern view inflates the present and the subjective presence to the absolute extreme, so that the cosmos appears as an unfalsifiably teleological monolith. This infuriates the Western mind, hearing soft-headed homilies of ‘There are no coincidences’ and ‘Everything happens for a reason’ to justify pre-scientific superstition. This would be a solipseverse rather than a universe – a universe which fits into single self. Monotheism splits the difference, with a Unisolipse – a single God self who is not us, but who is like us and can help us and care about us.

What I propose is that each of these models fall out naturally as reflections from a sense-based foundation. The true universe is an orchestration of (orchestration-unorchestration) of perceived qualities and conditions. A paratheistic or ambitheistic society of self-elaborating experiences.

*Love to me seems more human-centric or mammal-centric to me, but I think that Love could be better understood in this context as the most recent form of empathy or sense. Sense allows wholes and parts to partially disconnect and reconnect with the whole.

Prismandala

October 3, 2015 1 comment

mandalism6

A quick and dirty key:

it’s an attempt at map of everything (a cosmogony?)

Starting with the I (right hand or far Eastern side). I is just regular old I. The local, personal self.

Above and below the I are Cogitans and Empatha, so thinking and feeling.

Above Cogitans is Sapientia: Wisdom. I could have gone with “Ari” or transpersonal, or mytho-poetic, psyche, etc. It’s reaching toward the zenith (Arcana) – the truth, the secret mysteries, God/Tao/Absolute, etc.

Below Empatha is Viscera: Visceral Sub-Personal urges and impulses. Freud called the Id. Cthonic influences.

Abstracta is pure, but meaningless logic. Quantitative relations. The unnatural.

Machina is the collapse into automaticity. It’s computation and mechanism.

Extensa is intended in more or less the same sense as the Cartesian Res Extensa – extended things, classical mechanics, Newtonian physics of matter and chemistry. It’s about 3D structures and their relations (space)

The Far Western/Left hand point is “Am”
This is the realm of the object perspective. When read left to right you get “Am I?” and from right to left “I am”.

Tempus is time as frequency of experienced events…their rise and fall and partial recycling. The machine’s fuel.

Scientia is Science, or Knowledge. The Western gnosis from the outside in. Theory and progress of civilization. The Eastern version, the Sapientia, is life wisdom…the wisdom of direct experience accumulated as inspiring ideas.

Final image tweak:

Prisma_fade_master

Leaving Space, Time, and Spacetime Behind

May 12, 2015 2 comments

Are Space and Time an Illusion? Considered in this video:

  • 1. Give up your intuitions of how space and time work.
  • 2. Facts about observers (particles are considered observers):
    • a. observers disagree on how much time passes between events.
    • b. observers disagree on how much space there is between things at any given moment.
    • c. observers don’t fully agree on the chronological order of events.
    • d. observations are consistent so that no observer can be ‘wrong’.
  • 3. Spacetime is emergent from a deeper objective reality of causality.
    • a. all observers agree on spacetime interval
      image
    • b. Spacetime intervals tell us about which causes influence which effects.
    • c. Causality is more objectively real than spacetime.
    • d. Spacetime is a tenseless, Non-Euclidean 4D mathematical Minkowski space.
    • e. Our intuitions of space and time are arbitrary and abstract.
    • f.  We are real, however, if we think of our entire lives as a fixed geometric object in spacetime rather than a moving window on the line segment of our life:
image

He begins to sum up at 6:03

“Imagine we’re all reading a flip book made of graph paper. We agree on the events of the story, but we don’t agree where they happen on the page, on how many pages there are between events, or even on the order of some of those events, and yet we’re all reading the same book…only there’s no graph on the paper, there are no pages, and there is no book. All of that is just an imposition our brains make in order to perceive whatever it is. So why do we perceive reality in such a vividly spatial and temporal way? Good question, No one really knows.”

At this point is where I jump up and raise my hand. I think that I might know the answer to that question:

The mistake being made in our sophisticated rewrite of naive intuition about space and time is that the constancy of the spacetime interval is due to an objective ‘same book’ (or bookless book or whatever we are supposed all be reading.) To go to the next step into multisense realism, we must not only give up our intuitions about space and time being different, but we must give up our counter-intuitions about spacetime being literal.

If we consider instead that there is no final Minkowski block time universe out there, no ‘same book’, or even same language out there, but rather a shared capacity to read/write, in here, then both the naive intuition and sophisticated counter-intuition makes sense as perspectives within a larger context. Not just in human experience, or even within particles or probability laws, but deeper than that.

In this new schema all is read/written beyond spacetime but still ‘within’. Within us as well as ‘within’ every kind of non-human experience. This pervasive context ‘within all awareness’ would be an absolute context which is pervasive and devoid of any formal sense of distance or time. An anti-void. This absolute frame of reference can be understood as sense itself (something like “ference” rather than reference): Direct participation of perceptual qualities that need not be realistic, but also extend to phenomena which we are familiar with as fiction, imagination, myth, etc.

This is not to say that human imagination could necessarily describe the entire continuum of sense, but like the visible spectrum is to electromagnetism, it defines a range which is a thin slice of the whole, but much more than merely one color. The one ‘color’, call it white, would correspond to the single combined sense of timeless, spaceless realism that is studied under math and physics, but is nevertheless bereft of aesthetic qualities such as emotion, flavor, or (other) colors.

All that has ever been experienced can be seen, in this absolute frame of reference to be ‘right here and right now’, but for our local inhibitory conditions of human limitation. From our human perspective there is a cost in making awareness so immense that it embraces all other partitions; it becomes unreal or fictional, delusional, supernatural, absurd, or accidental*. The ‘heavens’ are not only causally closed at one level of awareness, but on another, they open up to non-linear, surreal mythscapes with no temporal rooting but deep symbolic meaning.

Jung spoke of the collective unconscious, Australian aborigines refer to a primordial Dreamtime, and many a psychedelic explorer have reported such aesthetically saturated realms. Anthropologists find that it is very common for cultures to assume that children are born into this world from a dreamier, more divine kind of world. These shamanistic-psychotic surrealities need not be considered ‘real’, however neither can their surreality and flirtation with prophetic intuitions be dismissed as mere accident. Even as a kind of placebo effect, the transcendental levels of experience must be accounted for in any would-be-complete view of the universe.

There is a lot to understand about our own spectrum of consciousness before we can even begin to approach the totality of awareness, which may be an unbounded, or self-binding rather than a fixed continuum. Non-human states of awareness might be both ‘larger’ and ‘smaller’, faster and slower than we can conceive of. This conception of the totality of experience as beyond causality turns causality into a kind of ‘nozzle’ of spacetime. Causality focuses the ocean of creativity; interiorizing some and exteriorizing others into relative degrees (the ancestor of our ‘five senses’ in which, for example, feeling seems ‘closer to us’ than seeing).

The pieces of this puzzle of human consciousness can, in my estimation, reveal a kind of ‘red shift’ and ‘blue shift’ which can be thought of in human terms as the stereotypically** autistic and psychotic extremes of human consciousness.

To return to the video, the multisense realism view would add:

  • 4. Nonlocal spacetime and “space ⊥ time” as (space and time in their naive, perpendicular local appearance) both emerge from a deeper common sense, which is trans-local.
    • a. this common sense can be thought of as the capacity for sense itself, or rather, for the particular kind of worldly sense of causality and agreement, which we might call realism.
    • b. realism is a common, but not exclusively common sense but is the reflection of an even more fundamental sense, which is novel and unprecedented rather than probabilistic or determined by laws.
    • c. the common sense of realism divides experience mechanistically and unintentionally
    • d. the uncommon sense beyond realism multiplies intentionally, seeking and building significance.
    • e. what we call causality is itself caused. Our distanced observations of realism is a kind of low-res substitute or icon that carries some semblance of the totality, but in an aesthetically neutralized, minimalistic form.
    • f. by using the built in, self-organizing clues of nature, we can begin to see how the holographic universe must be extended to include our own ‘visible spectrum’.
  • 5. The agreement of the Spacetime Interval is not evidence of a rigid body of 4D absolute reality, but rather evidence of the potential for agreement itself, i.e. the revelation of underlying local sensory unity with distant sensory conditions.
    • a. this is what the constancy of light speed and gravity are ‘really about’: not photons or forces, but ordinary sensory experience in self-diffraction.
    • b. light is not a particle or a wave, it is a local sensation on the cusp of spacetime emergence. Light is local sensation, and sensation is a boundary condition within sense.
    • c.  this means that sensation is more of a temporary subtraction from the eternal than an isolated piece of information.
    • d.  the extremes of human consciousness should be seen as a richer, more significant version of a guiding theme in all of sense: that of psychotic-unpredictable-figurative entropy and autistic-static-literal information.
    • e.  the phenomenon of seeing can be used metaphorically to begin to understand these extremes, as well as ordinary experiences of common sense, by working with the idea of language as a gravitational lensing in which the light of sense is bent by local accumulations of significance (mass).
  • 6. Paradoxically, what all observers agree on is their potential for agreement and fact of their own disagreement.
    • a. We can reclaim our naive intuitions about space and time being different, as this perpendicular aesthetic is an accurate reflection of our own subjective tunnel through eternity.
    • b. We can claim the Minkowski counter-intuition as a brilliant, and useful creation myth which is derived from common insensitivity, rather than common sense.

This is way too much to take in all at once (even for me), and I have no doubt that it sounds crazy to most people (that too is part of the Lorentz-like contractions and dilatations of sense-making). This is only the very tip of the iceberg…just something to get down in writing…for now.

*Whether the out-of-range portions of the spectrum of sense appear to be insane, error, or divine depends upon the frame of reference from which they are experienced.

**not talking about real people who demonstrate autistic or psychotic symptoms, but the themes exposed by the stereotyping of those symptoms, some of which are being researched under Imprinted Brain Theory.

Thesis Rewrite Project

April 25, 2015 Leave a comment

MSR’s Case Against Emergence

Within the MSR website, there are several entries talking about the inadequacy of the concept of emergence when applied to consciousness emerging from unconsciousness. Briefly, emergence only has any explanatory power when applied to two phenomena which have a logical similarity. We can understand that water molecules which are tightly packed would seem to us to have the emergent property of being ice, where molecules which are contacting each other but sliding around would have the emergent property of seeming to us like a liquid. What is meant when emergence is applied to consciousness however, is not like that at all. There is no arrangement of particles in a void that is isomorphic to a flavor, color, or feeling like dizziness. Emergence which cannot be anticipated by the behavior of the fundamental phenomenon is known as Strong or Brute Emergence, and under the best of circumstances can be dismissed as an argument from ignorance. In the circumstance of consciousness emerging from objects or information processes, we are smuggling in our own evidence of experience as the entire explanation of that experience. To claim emergence of consciousness is to answer the question of why molecules seem like flavors or emotions by shrugging it off as the way that molecules seem…as if seeming could exist in physics in the absence of consciousness.

Here’s a thought experiment to consider:

Let’s say that you have a two dimensional collection of six squares in a cross formation, like this:

hi-d_figure3
Now we know that this could be folded into a cube, however, couldn’t we also have a program which treats the edges as if it were a cube, but use it as a graphic character in a 2d video game? In other words, can’t we show that just because the edges and corners of this figure behave in a way which is isomorphic to a 3d figure, no cube ’emerges’ necessarily? We could run this program in Flatland without folding it up as cube and all of the computational outcomes would be the same.

The emergentist position overlooks the difference between the squares and the cube, claiming the latter not to be anything additional added on top of the flat avatar. The idealist position is that there is a difference between a cube and the avatar, and that this difference is the most important and interesting thing…the whole point is that there doesn’t need to be a cube logically, but yet there is.

Intellectual fads come and go. Even long held scientific frameworks change over time to accommodate new knowledge. For centuries Ptolemaic astronomy was presumed accurate, so much so that when anomalies were found in the predictions of its deferent and epicycle model, the response was famously to ‘add epicycles’ to make finer tuned predictions rather than to suspect what Galileo and Copernicus later found. The heliocentric revolution changed our understanding of our position in the universe from one of divine center or paradise lost to a statistical fluke in a dying cosmos. For the 1200 years between 200 and 1400 AD, why did we stick to the geocentric model? Why was it more natural to think that the universe revolved around us?

Like the fish which has no name for water, or the Flatland square who has no way to conceive of flatness as a dimension which lacks volume, it was difficult for people to doubt those assumptions that they didn’t even know they were making. The Earth feels motionless – as stable and static as anything we can imagine. Who would guess that the very property of motion is a relative condition? Once we have that piece of information, we can find, as Einstein did, examples of it everywhere – on trains, when we can’t tell whether our seat is moving forward at a constant speed or whether the train out the window is moving past us and we are standing still. One favorite thought experiment of mine is to think of a universe in which only one object exists; a smooth, ideal sphere like a ping pong ball. In this universe, nothing can be seen to move. Without making ourselves an invisible voyeur who can look around into the void, there is no true sense of space or change. There is no difference between moving and standing still because there is no frame of reference from which to compare and see that a position has changed. Video games can help us conceptualize this also. The player who pilots a spaceship avatar has only the attitude of their ship to cue their sense of acceleration when traveling through empty space.

whisperingwater
Notice how ocean waves stop moving when seen from high above.

(Sound gif, Source)

The shift that is proposed by MSR would twist our view of the universe, so that the universe itself becomes a kind of twisting or gyrating between different ways of experiencing.

Yeats System

Yeatsgyre

Yeats, like Locke and Galileo before him, conceived of the worldly half of the universe as “Primary”, which is perfectly natural considering that when we are awake we find ourselves surrounded by a physical world which is so much larger and more durable than ourselves. MSR proposes not that we invert this relation into solipsism, where internal phenomena are primary and the external world is secondary, but to see our own subjectivity as just one tier in a continuum which is much more vast and durable than even physics. Under MSR, both the dualistic Western and non-dualistic Eastern views both exist within the total continuum of sense.

msr_mandalabr_cap

The Yeats system is multiplied so that it is realism which is emergent rather than subjectivity. The aesthetic objectives of Yeats are no longer the antithesis, but the thesis and meta-thesis.

msr_mandalabr_cap2

mess

Multisense realism = The elaboration of sense into layers and modes which objectify and subjectivity.

Cone Cosmogony

March 31, 2015 1 comment

headless

cone3

The first image is from https://www.facebook.com/headexchange. The second has been modified to include the Multisense Realism model.

Specifically, “Me” has been removed from the center of the mandala and turned into part of the z axis. The center of the wheel is now Form-Function, and Now, indicating that consciousness is at its most pointillistic and fragmented. This would be the sharpest, most systematizing-autistic quality of consciousness, quantitative and reductionistic.*

The diameter of the circles corresponds to space or distance (really wavelength ratio/scale), so that the wheel represents a flat cross section of eternity. Time is the diagonal axis which is can be thought of as the z axis ‘deferred’. If our experience (feeling, thought, etc) extends from eternity to now as a qualitative spectrum (as symbolized by the chakra graphic), then ‘time’ is the interference pattern between eternal experience and fully public, discrete events.

The top of the cone is labeled eternity, although it is eternity in the sense of the eternal moment rather than a linear history of time. Eternity can also be called the Absolute, or God, Tao, Consciousness, Aesthetic Foundation, and many other names. Identifying with the Absolute while still in our body is the opposte end of the consciousness spectrum – the most colorful, florid, artistic-empathic-psychotic range of awareness.

* See previous posts on Imprinted Brain Theory and the Autistic-Psychotic spectrum.

Sun, Earth, and Understanding Idealism

January 16, 2015 Leave a comment

No description of the relation between the Sun and Earth is complete without including the geocentric view as well as the heliocentric view. This is not to suggest that the archaic views of astronomy should be considered the equal of the modern view, but that there was ever an alternative to the modern view in the first place makes the universe impossible to describe accurately by leaving it out.

Even without suggesting that we might someday find a third alternative to both geocentric and heliocentric astronomy which we can scarcely imagine now, we can still appreciate that the fact that it took thousands of years for heliocentricism to be widely accepted is a testament to how relative relativity really is. Physics makes us feel brilliant for understanding that the relation between Sun and Earth is conserved regardless of which way we choose to interpret it locally, but that brilliant feeling distracts us from the mystery of why there could be or should be any interpretation at all. What is a frame of reference, and what is doing the framing?

Another thought experiment to consider, in the vein of ‘What is it like to be a bat?’…what is it like to be the Sun? The world from a star’s point of view would be one in which everything that could be detected would already be illuminated – but without any apparent connection that you are the source of the illumination. So it is with consciousness. Everything that we see is reflecting the capacity that we have to see. It cannot be seen on its own, or else we would not need eyes (holes in our head would suffice).

The novice philosopher will say that it is a case of “If a tree falls in a forest…does it make a sound?”, but this is not about epistemology, it’s about ontology. The epistemological realm is concerned with verification. “Does it make a sound or not?”. The ontological question is much deeper…it asks, what is a sound and is it even true to assume that a tree falling ‘makes’ one.

In light of the many clues that we have, from Heisenberg’s uncertainty, to relativity, to incompleteness, we can begin to see how perception is not only a passive receiving of objective truth, but a participation across multiple frames of perceptual reference. In an ironic twist, the scientific project that has brought us to a weltanschauung which values only objective facts has found only facts with no objects and objects with no facts. Meanwhile, the one incontestable fact, our own perception, has been overlooked completely, like the Sun losing touch with it’s light completely and accepting that it is part of the empty space and surrounded by planets that must light themselves.

Bang!

March 24, 2014 Leave a comment

If Big Bang was a singular event that created space, time and matter, then one must view the universe as a rapidly expanding billiards table of N dimensions with all events pre-determined. There can be no intervening force or new element of causality possible. There can be no uncertainty, and any notions of either free will or divine intervention are illusory.

If the Big Bang created time, then I think that it should not be thought of as an event (in time), but rather as the hub that all events have in common. The Big Bang never happened, it did happen, it is still happening, it hasn’t happened yet. Because we are measuring it from inside of spacetime, and using instruments that are limited to only the most generic spatial-quantitative measurements, our results reflect a narrowly defined model of the origin of causality itself. It is the fallacy of the instrument – we have a hammer of physics so everything that physics measures looks like a nail. What I propose instead is a Big Diffraction, where the birth of spacetime is an influx of dissociation into countless semi-permeable perceptual frames of reference that are united beyond spacetime.

If we place ourselves in the moment of the Big Bang, we cannot judge it on a human scale of time, since that scale of time had not been invented yet. If the universe itself is awareness, the first trillionths of a second of the invention of time are no less likely to feel like five minutes than they are an eternity. As the singularity breaks into multiplicity (Tzimtzum for fans of the Kabbalah), it is inventing the possibility of multiplicity for the first time. Eternity is spawning micro-eternities in which each micro-view is stretching out eternity so that it seems both ever longer and slower and seems to have originated in an ever more brief instant. Time is all about comparing frequencies of awareness – beats per measure. Time is relativistic because time is relativity itself – the framing of perceptual reference.

What we see through a telescope is an objectified version of the story of objectification that serves as a creation myth for the anti-mythology of functionalism. Free will was never inside of spacetime to begin with. It was not created, it creates. If free will is illusory, then it is that which is illusory which gives birth to realism and physics, not the other way around. The universe is a single thread of singing, signaling, significance-building experience,weaving and winding through a maze of its own self-imposed alienation. Divinity is optional, and free will is scarce, but the universe is only a billiard table if you limit the vocabulary of inquiry to that of billiard balls.

Annotated Tree

January 19, 2014 Leave a comment

annotated_tree

Topography of Eigenmorphism Part II

December 16, 2013 Leave a comment

Another visual metaphor:

Eigenmorphism_demo

Eigenmorphism visualization part II

This diagram shows how elemental phenomena (bottom image) appear to us to have very little going on inside. Their public properties are not very body-like and their behaviors are imagined not to be very experiential. Eigenmorphism is the idea that as phenomena progress to richer experiential qualities, their interior and exterior nature expands in opposite directions.  In biological organisms, the public and private view not only differ by perspective, but the interior perspective can increasingly elaborate itself (spiral grows) without the exterior perspective (square shadow) revealing any change.

It should be noted that this is a metaphor, not a diagram of matter or quantum. What the yellow wall refers to is actually shapeless, as it is the appreciation of and participation in experiences. The increasing elaboration of the shape stands for increasingly rich and varied modalities of sensitivity. MSR suggests that the three dimensional figure in the center is not real at all, and a better diagram would show the shadow from the blue wall and the shadow from the yellow wall gradually morphing into each other in stages.

The difference between the high and low ends of the eigenmorphic spectrum are not only in the degree to which their interior qualities differ from their exterior properties, or in the kinds of qualities which higher experiences contain, but also in ubiquity vs uniqueness. The generic nature of low level phenomena make them comparatively interchangeable and universal, so that physical and mathematical laws have a universal reach. The highest level phenomena can be esoteric to the point of near-solipsism, with meanings that are so multiplexed and poetic that they apply only to a single moment or perspective.

Biology From The Inside

December 14, 2013 4 comments

This gif is one of the set that has been going around, but it reminds me of the concept that I have of biological awareness (as opposed to primordial awareness which is embodied by physics and does not require biology). Whether the inorganic universe is four dimensional (3 + 1 time) or just seems that way from within a two dimensional hologram, it seems likely to me that the experience of biological organisms is best modeled along a fifth axis (aesthetic qualities as more than the sum of their conditional parts).

What I like about the repeating gif, besides the coincidental “5” relating to the fifth dimension, is that it suggests a kind of morphological respiration. Front to back, parts to whole, a seamless, self-metabolizing transformation. As a biological organism, my experience of the outside world is limited to that which can be modeled as objects – that is, through an aesthetically reduced feature set in which a bunch of five dimensional urges and responses are flattened into a four dimensional narrative on multiple levels.

In a previous post, I was looking at how sensitivity might be understood as being ‘key composited’ or perhaps ‘discomposed’ across multiple frames of reference. By this I mean that the apparent distribution of our psychological interface across the tissue of the brain can be compared to a flatland visualization:

If instead of the sphere, it were a hand passing through the flatland plane, it would appear to the omniscient flatlander that there were five separate circles appearing separately, yet somehow seeming coordinated in their action. The fingers are part of a single hand, but within the constraint of the two dimensional sensitivity, the unity of the hand is discomposed across space in the literal sense, but figuratively some kind of unity can be inferred through the synchronized coincidence of the movement.

Now imagine that instead of another graphable dimension, the fifth dimension is one which is as orthogonal to spacetime as the three dimensions of space are to the one dimension of time. Feeling, like pain and pleasure, are like a coloring, or keying which cuts across multiple layers of seemingly unrelated public events. Not only is feeling a different kind of thing as forms or functions but it is a dimension in which dimension itself is transcended. Feeling is not a model or a measure, but rather it is the primordial context from which all measure is derived and all modeling is made demonstrable.

From the discomposed perspective ‘out there’, we are a coincidence of coincidences. A mysteriously synchronized, dynamic orchestration of hundreds of billions of neurons, organelles, molecules, etc which corresponds to the behavior of an animal’s body.

The feelings which we experience are not located in the tissue of the brain, rather the brain itself is part of the wider landscape of the totality of experience. The brain as a whole is, like our body as a whole and all of the cells and molecules that make it up at any given time, a four dimensional reduction of a transdimensional privacy.

Under Eigenmorphism, the base of each pyramid of perception is made up of the apex of countless low level pyramids of perception. When we look at an fMRI or the brain, we are trying to look at the view from top of our own pyramid through the blind eyes of its own bottom. Feeling is stripped out (not to mention the higher dimensions of meta-feeling/emotion/cognition/intuition) and we are left with a four dimensional mechanical skeleton with no interiority.

Being so impressed with ourselves and what we have accomplished by questioning our naive introspection with science, we naturalize the discomposed view and epiphenomenalize the native, gestalt perspective. All of this makes perfect sense within the flatlanded context of topological physics, where spontaneous appearances and disappearances are assumed only to reflect each other, rather than private transdimensional presentations.

I suspect that the universe which is experienced in the absence of all living organisms is a much different thing that it would appear to us. What we see as a four or two dimensional manifold is only a snapshot of discomposed histories. It seems inanimate to us because we seem so animated to ourselves. The highest awareness of our own interior physics seems to us unreal and crazy…and it is, relative to the inertia of human awareness as a whole. Like the inverted image of our retina however, I think that because our disposition spans so many levels of life and physical experience, we tend to see the mechanical patterns which all of the layers have in common, rather than the coincidence which is also animating them from the top down.

Like the transformer car in the gif, the signature of our presence and intention coincides with the interplay of entropy and significance. The living cell, from our perspective looking through our eyes and a microscope’s lens, looks like a homeostatic emergence. Seemingly conjured, like Brownian motion, from the statistical collisions of countless microphysical conditions.

This is not completely untrue. The mechanical conditions of a cell can be disrupted mechanically. There is bottom up causality. What has not been properly investigated yet is the other perspective. The one responsible for the biological property of healing and global integrity. If we think of the flux between entropy and significance as a carrier tone for biological life, then it might be easier to conceptualize how the universe is as much a dynamic interaction of nested simplicities as it is a mechanical progression from simplicity to complexity. The image of the metabolic transformer stands in contrast to the stillness of the axis of its transformation.

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