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#1708 - 11/10/07 07:43 PM The Universe as Super-Robot
Meq Offline
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The Universe as Super-Robot


The Universe – Machine or Organism?


With the old ‘mechanistic worldview’ of physicists such as Isaac Newton, who followed René Descartes and Thomas Hobbes, and the ancient thinkers Epicurus and Democritus before them, the Universe was seen as a giant machine, running as if by clockwork according to fixed and predictable laws of nature.

This worldview changed with the advent of modern physics in the early 20th century. First with Albert Einstein’s Special Theory of Relativity, then with Quantum Mechanics, the Universe was seen to behave in a much more chaotic, erratic, and random fashion. Unlike Einstein’s famous saying, God does play dice (if there is a God, that is).

Einstein was influenced by the mechanistic views of Benedict Spinoza, with his naturalised Pantheism – the view that the natural Universe itself is God. Spinoza, like Descartes and Plato before him, was obsessed with precise geometric and logical form.

However, his limited view of God or Nature as a machine-like Universe influenced Einstein’s view that God does not ‘play dice’ with the Cosmos (in other words, he believes that the Universe works in fixed and predictable ways, almost as if by clockwork – a throwback to Newton and Descartes, as well as the ancient thinkers Plato and Pythagoras, with their mystical ‘geometric’ theories of the Universe).

The modern theories of Quantum Mechanics reveal a much more chaotic, random, and mysterious Universe than the once more popular and ‘tamer’ model, one which fallaciously projected human thought and logic onto the World, in a vain human desire for order and predictability – the arrogance of seeing the inhuman World as ‘human’.

Therefore, the view of the Universe as simply a giant machine finally fell out of favour. Today, a naturalistic worldview (one without any supernatural beliefs at all) is today based on the view of the Universe as being either like a giant machine, or like a giant organism.

In Gaia theory, which is gaining ground today in science, the Earth in particular is seen as a giant organism, nicknamed Gaia after the Greek goddess of the Earth.

But the theory of the World working like a living organism goes all the way back to the primordial religion and philosophy of man – Animism. In this ancient faith, the World is a World-Soul, or Great Spirit, and all of nature and the Earth is seen as alive, even rocks. This uniquely human way of thinking and seeing things goes back millions of years – long before the advent of ‘civilisation’ and today’s religions and philosophies – before our species homo sapiens became dominant.

This is also the origin of Chinese Taoist thought, with its Way of the Tao, and the rational Pantheism of the Stoics and others, West and East, through the Western Pagan Mystery religions, and Hinduism.

Pantheism – seeing the Universe as God, feeling God’s Presence - His Immanence - in the World, with the World being divine – can still be a valid philosophy today, if its rational and naturalistic worldview is freed from the overly mechanised and metaphysical elements of Einstein and Spinoza’s thought. In fact, a less mechanised worldview, which sees the Universe as more like a giant organism than a giant machine, puts this form of Pantheism more in line with its primeval Animist roots, which saw the World as alive, really alive, with both physical body and mind (or soul) – as a living, breathing, all-powerful, intelligently ordered – even conscious and sentient – super-organism.


The Super-Robot

The old, ‘mechanistic’ approach to the Universe still has some positive application, such as in Newton’s physics, which work relatively well to an approximate degree. So can the Universe still be seen as a machine to some extent, as well as an organism?

Perhaps - as in physics, a packet of light can be seen either as a particle, or as a wave - the Universe can be viewed either as machine or organism, depending on how you look. But perhaps a better metaphor for the Universe, in this instance, is not a mere machine or an organism, but a mechanical super-organism. Not merely a frozen super-computer, but a fluid super-robot. A Super-Being both mechanical and organic. Perhaps somewhat like the T-1000 in Terminator 2 – Judgment Day.

An awe-inspiring Super-Being in which - although its inner workings are much too hard for us to ever fathom - its rich, fresh and lucid appearance shows the form of a giant, living organism, pulsing, full of Life. In this mystical view, the Life of the Universe here is beyond duality, beyond our everyday understanding of ‘life’ and ‘death’. It is a Life beyond ‘life’ and ‘death’. The Eternal Life of Being.

This mystical Life, God, or Great Spirit, is merely a phenomenological view which the Cosmos impresses on us – a way it subjectively appears to us in our human minds - whether we see this Being as conscious in itself, as a transcendental Divine Mind; or as the natural Universe itself, as with Spinoza and Einstein; or as a blind and random process of natural selection, as with Richard Dawkins.

Einstein called the deep feeling of awe and wonder at perceiving the Universe to be divine, to be God - the ‘Cosmic Religious Feeling’. Whether this is seen as a nice, orderly God – or as a more wild, Bacchanalian Deity which does indeed play dice – the notion of the ‘Cosmic Religious Feeling’ still stands, itself derived from naturalistic Pantheism, which itself derived from Animism, the oldest system of thought known to man. With the primordial Animistic feeling of a wild, living Universe as a real organism, which we are all miniscule parts of, Einstein’s awesome and wonderful ‘Cosmic Religious Feeling’ is seen as the origin and inspiration of all true art and all science – and is even accepted by staunch Atheists such as Richard Dawkins.


So I propose The Unified Theory of The Universe as Super-Robot

Like the T-1000, whose liquid metal mechanics and inner intelligence were far too complex for the human mind to grasp, yet it was still a machine – the inner workings and mysteries of the Universe may appear mechanical, yet be working with more of the wild, Dionysiac complexity and awe-inspiring, dark, mysterious irrationality of an organism. An inhuman organism much greater than man, and much too complex for man’s puny, insignificant little mind to grasp.

This Super-Robot does have a different composition to the T-1000, however. While the T-1000 was a machine manifesting as an organism, the Universe is a fucking weird organism manifesting as a machine. Maybe it is right to call it God.


Edited by Paula (11/10/07 07:46 PM)
Edit Reason: Stylised

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#1849 - 11/13/07 12:26 PM Re: The Universe as Super-Robot [Re: Meq]
97and107 Offline
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 Quote:
the Universe is a fucking weird organism manifesting as a machine. Maybe it is right to call it God.


Good post. This reminds me of Max Tegmark's remark - "Maybe we'll gradually get used to the weird way our cosmos is, and slowly come to find its strangeness, part of its charm"

I am sometimes met with hostility at my remarks on parallel universes, string theory and morphogenetic resonance, all of which have some basis in scientific theory and some are even proven - for instance, I was told a year ago, here, by some uninformed member that there couldn't possibly be more than three dimensions, when we already have proof higher dimensions with constructs such as the klein bottle.

This is a scary reality for some people - to think that logically, we have some twin in a parallel universe (as proposed by Tegmark) or that there are forces that can rip apart entire galaxies in the blink of an eye...for no reason at all.

Yet the duty of the Satanist - to himself, or herself, is to face these stark facts and not find comfort in inadequate and outdated paradigms.

These principles are already laid out in tantra, too, so it's been with us for a while - humans are just incredibly stupid, and that is our enemy - each and every one of us has to battle this illogical embedded paradigm that goes right back to the dawn of man. It's in our evolutionary mechanism not to percieve reality as it is, because that's some scary numbers, man...we're attuned to naturally think of ourselves as far more grand than we actually are.

I enjoy discussing such things, especially when it comes to holographic universe, consciousness is rapidly shifting towards a more interconnected state, where we are aware of our actions on a global level - we can see the destruction of the planet, if we choose to...we can see the pain and anguish permeating our globe - if we choose too. Alot of the Satanists I know are very moved by this factor - they care about the world, though they try not to show it. They are facing the reality of doom, in many senses...

However this needn't be as gloomy as it all looks, transhumanism is a good option for many...

But...I don't need god yet...he's not big enough for me...I want fire and darkness...those things that are far far older and powerful than the principle called god...


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#1862 - 11/13/07 08:04 PM Re: The Universe as Super-Robot [Re: 97and107]
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String theory is certainly interesting, but it's natural progression leads to the very possible and probable concept of M theory. The possibilities within M Theory are truly astounding and I find absolutely fascinating, especially when applied to metaphysical "if's." And if we are spinning within the Multiverse surrounded by an infinate number of "membranic" singularities, who's to say what those singularities might possibly be? And what are the implications of the concept of "multiple singularities?"

Wonderful food for thought...great post.
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#1949 - 11/16/07 04:02 PM Re: The Universe as Super-Robot [Re: Octavius]
Meq Offline
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One comment I liked from What The Bleep Do We Know:
“The important thing isn't to be in the know - but to be in the mystery...”


I also like this quote from Einstein:

“The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: his eyes are closed.”

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#68229 - 07/02/12 02:56 PM JK's challenge thread REVISITED [Re: Meq]
Jason King Offline
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And I figured who better to reply to than the Almighty Meq?

Mechanism vs. Quantum indeterminism?

Ultimately science (q.v. Lt. scio) decides this quarrel, even if only at the asymptote. Mechanism is flawed because it seeks too much in the way of analysis. Materialism equally so due to faulty ontology. Realism fails the test of simple definition (i.e., what is "real?). Idealism would seem to fare better, yet, as Heraclitus and Gautama have proposed: where is there a substantial self?


What are we left with? Nonduality to be sure. But I would hold this is a scientific noduality. So I can say that C is the fundamental UNIT of relative measure. And that even when we grasp/attach/dream MAYA, we are ultimately riding the turning Wheel of Samsara. And that the latter is equivalent to the spinning Current grossly referred to as Satanism.

thoughts?

JK
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#68232 - 07/02/12 04:33 PM Re: JK's challenge thread REVISITED [Re: Jason King]
Diavolo Offline
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If you'd not mind, explain this in layman's terms because I have the suspicion there's a giant leap of faith hidden which might surface the moment we simplify the word use.

D.

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#68233 - 07/02/12 04:41 PM Re: JK's challenge thread REVISITED [Re: Jason King]
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I'd like to cite Robert Svoboda to give an example of how to deal with this from a LHP-perspective:

 Quote:
For example, the philosophers of Advaita (absolute nondual) Vedanta say: "Brahman sat, jagan mithya," meaning that the Universal Soul or Atma exists in reality but that the world, the manifested universe, does not. An Aghori believes "Brahman sat, jagan sat": Both the Atma and the Samsara (the world of manifestation) are real and existent because the Samsara manifests itself directly from the Supreme Soul. If the product is impure and the process is efficient then must not the raw material be impure? But we know the Atma is pure. If all is part of a harmonious whole then all must be accepted as real. The world may not be true, no doubt. The world is in fact full of falsehood. But it is real, as least as real as you and I are. And you cannot deny your own reality, because when you do you enter a logical paradox: If you are unreal then you cannot comment on the reality or lack of it in your existence.

Robert A. Svoboda, Aghora: At the Left Hand of God, Albuquerque 1999, p. 168


Edited by Iskander (07/02/12 04:47 PM)

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#68250 - 07/03/12 07:31 AM Re: JK's challenge thread REVISITED [Re: Diavolo]
Jason King Offline
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 Originally Posted By: Diavolo
If you'd not mind, explain this in layman's terms because I have the suspicion there's a giant leap of faith hidden which might surface the moment we simplify the word use.

D.



Shit dude, that was Laymanese. But then again, it was a bit stream-of-27-beer-consciousness, so I'll go at it a bit differently this time.

I took Meq's analysis as essentially an outer skin covering the philosophical onion that is the realism/idealism debate. I stipulated that the mechanism vs. holism debate must ultimately be settled by science and not metaphysics, but that there is a further thrust to this issue.

Nonduality as properly understood (pace Svoboda) is roughly the following:

1) the phenomena of perception are all that are axiomatic (radical empiricism/Kantian Idealism), everything else is a mind-construct.

2) there is no substance (eternalism in the Tantras) and no emptiness (nihilism in the Tantras) apart from this appearance of Mind (sems-nyid) to itself.

3) maya, samsara, and nirvana are all just different shades of the same proverbial color, which is just naked awareness.

Now perhaps you might find some leap of faith in this viewpoint, but I see it as being the only one which does not. Consider the simplest example: phenomena appear to be centered on a SELF, therefore, the self is real. However, this is not a given. The self is apparent, sure, but asserting its reality requires a leap of faith. Unless of course you reduce "reality" to "apparency," which is just what nonduality entails.

Science actually operates completely within such a viewpoint due to its unapologetic empiricism, which is just the point. The rest was poetry. Although, I must say that the measure C (commonly the "speed of light") does appear to be a fundamental exchange unit (of "mass" and "energy") within the subset of phenomenal "reality" we all intersect in.

a side note: such a metaphysics requires poetic expression if one does not wish to be bogged down in quote marks, parentheticals, and overly verbose sentence-packing. just sayin'

;\)

JK
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#68257 - 07/03/12 10:11 AM Re: JK's challenge thread REVISITED [Re: Jason King]
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Humans are driven by the drive to survive (Diavolo would say "dominate". For some, the other side of that coin is "fear".) to understand things - by systematizing something, it becomes predictable, and threats can be understood and avoided. The most common way to do this is anthropomorphization, because the systems humans are most familiar with are themselves.

However, most such systems are at best a collection of assumptions and heuristics, probably because survival can't wait for a 100% verifiable set of rules.

In my mind, this has nothing to do with "real" reality, or [non-]dualism, or dice. Those are all tools - the map is not the terrain.

Any simplified systemization will miss some bits, and will either be useful in some situation as a tool or not. The real question is that coin mentioned above, which is Doubt. Can you function with the knowledge that some things are unknown, or must you capture them, even at the cost of yourself, before you can face them?
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#68262 - 07/03/12 10:47 AM Re: JK's challenge thread REVISITED [Re: Autodidact]
Jason King Offline
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 Originally Posted By: Autodidact
In my mind, this has nothing to do with "real" reality, or [non-]dualism, or dice. Those are all tools - the map is not the terrain.


EXACTLY!

Oh wait, I just thought about it . . .

The map/territory dichotomy presupposes something.

And this thing is problematic for the reasons given above.

Try this: there is no map, only territory. Sketch a "map," it remains territory. Purchase an expensive map - still territory.

But where is the division?

What "you" call "territory" I call a "map". Get it yet?

JK

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#68267 - 07/03/12 11:50 AM Re: JK's challenge thread REVISITED [Re: Jason King]
Diavolo Offline
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The initial analysis (op) was flawed if you start with the assumption there is a duality to begin with based upon the “famous” wave-particle duality.

Now, all information we have about reality is based upon an observation of behavior; science doesn't really explain reality as it is but reality as it is behaving during a specific observation.

But then you make a leap of faith to consciousness (Self) which is why I asked to break it down. It's not even some leap, it's a darn enormous leap not too different from "Big Bang and before there was god".

D.

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#68268 - 07/03/12 12:01 PM Re: JK's challenge thread REVISITED [Re: Diavolo]
Jason King Offline
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 Originally Posted By: Diavolo
But then you make a leap of faith to consciousness (Self) which is why I asked to break it down. It's not even some leap, it's a darn enormous leap not too different from "Big Bang and before there was god".


I know I've had a chance to use the word elsewhere, but I think you'd be pressed to find me saying "consciousness" on this thread. As to "self," sure, but I thought I deconstructed it as a "real" thing.

I began (and ended) with the phenomena of perception. Qualia or sense data, if you will. You're smart enough, let's not talk past one another here. \:\)

JK

p.s. xoxo, M.


Edited by Jason King (07/03/12 12:06 PM)
Edit Reason: hugs and kisses to M.
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#68269 - 07/03/12 12:13 PM Re: JK's challenge thread REVISITED [Re: Jason King]
Diavolo Offline
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C'mon King, Self is just fancy rhetoric for consciousness.

What I see is a jump from an observation of reality into the Wild Wild East. I just ask to break down that jump into simple parts and explain me exactly which part you see as the potential link.

D.

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#68270 - 07/03/12 12:32 PM Re: JK's challenge thread REVISITED [Re: Diavolo]
Jason King Offline
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 Originally Posted By: Diavolo
C'mon King, Self is just fancy rhetoric for consciousness.

What I see is a jump from an observation of reality into the Wild Wild East. I just ask to break down that jump into simple parts and explain me exactly which part you see as the potential link.

D.

I hope you're kidding. As I stated before, a "self" is only apparent in phenomenal presentation. As is "world". All that is given is the panorama of expression. Everything else is "deduced" or "intuited" (as the particular case may be).

To take your terminology above and apply advaita: observation = = reality. It's not an "observation by an internal self of an external reality" - this is dualism. It is rather "phenomena presence". Everything else is a "leap of faith" (or, more properly, ma-rigpa/stepped-down awareness).

JK


p.s. For M.
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#68271 - 07/03/12 12:42 PM Re: JK's challenge thread REVISITED [Re: Jason King]
Diavolo Offline
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Ok, let's try this different.

Let's say I'm a materialist/reductionist and I'm pretty convinced this is a reasonable theory to describe reality.

If you'd disagree with that, how would you break it down to me without using pixie dust? With this I imply, how would you explain to me with simple yet effective lingo that I'm wrong?

D.

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