Archive | December, 2018

Langoliers and Transcription Factors

27 Dec

I have gotten so far away from any sort of empirical science with my ideas on Saurian Dualism that these ideas have taken on the character of what Extropia DaSilva calls “just-so stories”. Nevertheless, I feel a need to work out all the loose ends.

For clarity on this topic, see the following:

What Is Consciousness and Why Does It Matter

A Theory of God and Everything

Consciousness, A Simple Model

An Actual Theory of Consciousness

A Theory of Time

What Propositions Does Consciousness actually Decide

Saurian Dualism

Although the reason is somewhat obscure, I have become obsessed with the notion that spirits must remain completely separate from the “material” universe. However the description in my last entry suggests that they must have at least some contact with the material universe in order to delete paths that they do not follow. Also there is some question as to how spirits read the material universe in order to follow paths in it.

For these reasons, I have invented two new ideas: langoliers and transcription factors.

The term langolier comes from a Stephen King short story and a subsequent mini-series. In the Stephen King story, Langoliers follow closely behind the present and eat up the past.

Langoliers

Stephen King’s Langoliers from Mini-Series

The langoliers in my theory follow a history path right behind a spirit and make that path disappear behind it. They also make any paths disappear that are no longer blocked by the spirit. The moment a spirit comes to a fork in a path associated with quantum field collapse, the langolier is no longer blocked from access to that path and immediately destroys it well into the indefinite future.

Langoliers are not spirits, they are not conscious, and they do not have free will. They  are not material in the sense of the material universe. However, they have the property of being able to follow a physical timeline and also detect the presence of a spirit.

Transcription factors are the intermediary between the physical universe and a spirit. They transcribe the physical universe to the spirit so that the spirit can “see” what is going on without actually interacting with the physical universe. They also keep the spirit attached to and on the track of the physical universe. In this regard, they are very much like the transcription factors that read DNA and translate it into RNA.

Like langoliers, transcription factors are not spirits, they are not conscious, and they do not have free will. Nor are they physical.

Langoliers and TransciptIon Factors

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Saurian Dualism

24 Dec

Since my theory of consciousness is more or less complete, I realize that, for reference purposes, this theory must have a name. I hereby officially name it “Saurian Dualism”.

For an understanding of Saurian Dualism, see the following in the order that they are listed:

What Is Consciousness and Why Does It Matter

A Theory of God and Everything

Consciousness, A Simple Model

An Actual Theory of Consciousness

A Theory of Time

What Propositions Does Consciousness actually Decide

Langoliers and Transcription Factors

Spirits as Fundamental Truths

I may eventually collect all of this together into one completely coherent entry.

What Propositions Does Consciousness actually Decide

24 Dec

Something that has been bothering me about my theories of consciousness and time is that there is a conflict between the notions that consciousness must necessarily be separate from the syntactical processing of the mechanical universe while, at the same time, it must also resolve something about that mechanical universe in order to be called into existence.

For clarity on this topic, review the following:

https://spikosauropod.com/2012/04/17/a-theory-of-god-and-everything/

https://spikosauropod.com/2014/04/25/consciousness-a-simple-model/

https://spikosauropod.com/2018/11/30/an-actual-theory-of-consciousness/

https://spikosauropod.com/2018/12/22/a-theory-of-time/

The problem goes something like this. Since the mechanical universe is syntactical and consciousness is semantic, consciousness cannot be a part of the mechanical universe. For this reason, instead of interacting with the universe, a spirit, which manifests as consciousness, merely traces out one of many paths according to the Everett interpretation of quantum field collapse. However, the whole reason why a spirit exists is that there are recurring propositions in the mechanical universe—which way the field collapses—that can only be resolved if a choice function exists to resolve them. A spirit is supposedly the choice function that resolves those propositions.

I get around the problem of a spirit interacting with the mechanical universe by having it merely trace a path in the universe and choosing a path when it comes to a split. However, if the spirit merely chooses a path, it is not deciding anything but its own course. It does not influence the universe at all. However, if the spirit does not choose anything but its own path, it is not made necessary by the need for a choice. A spirit is rendered useless if it exists only to resolve propositions that affect only itself.

For a while, I was content to assume that the Everett interpretation of quantum field collapse was only an interpretation and that, when it was convenient, I could switch back to the Copenhagen interpretation, but that kind of theoretic rationalizing is something I am trying to avoid. I am developing a theory that simply works.

What I propose as a remedy is that a spirit does not choose the path that the universe follows, but chooses which paths remain after it selects its own path. In other words, after the spirit chooses a path, the other paths that it does not choose disappear. It does not choose which path comes into existence, since all the paths exist initially. It chooses which paths go away.

Fork in Path

This not only solves the problem of what a spirit decides. It also solves a problem with thermodynamics. A principle of thermodynamics is that entropy can only increase. However, in the many worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics, the possibility that paths may converge creates the possibility that entropy will decrease. However, if every path that a spirit does not follow is “pruned” this problem goes away. Since the pruning continues through the point where the paths might have fused, the overlap no longer exists for either path.

This is the perfect solution. It means that the path the universe follows is not influenced at all by a spirit and the spirit is not influenced at all by the universe while, at the same time, it is called into existence to resolve a proposition in the universe.

It may seem at first that the fact that a spirit’s action removes the possibility of paths converging has an eventual effect on the path that the universe can follow, but actually it does not. The universe could not have followed that path anyhow due to the second law of thermodynamics. The choice that a spirit makes merely provides the mechanism by which the convergence is prevented. However, the fact that it performs that inevitable service, once again guarantees its existence.

Note that the spirit only chooses the path that the universe follows at points of quantum collapse. It has no influence on the syntactical processing that manifests as classical physics. The universe behaves exactly as it would have done if the spirit did not exist. However, at certain points where the universe would have split anyhow, and the split would have been probabilistic according to the Copenhagen interpretation, a spirit, in a sense, causes the deck to be stacked. It has no influence on the course of paths it does not follow, since those paths cease to exist. (Note that there is no observer in those paths, since the spirit has taken a different path.) There is no classical trace of the spirit having acted at all. A good analogy would be someone who always seems to get winning hands in poker games while there is no evidence, even in theory, that they have cheated.

To accommodate any “sum over histories” effects or quantum erasure effects, it is possible that the neglected path does not disappear until every possibility of it influencing the path a spirit follows has run its course.

A Theory of Time

22 Dec

While thinking about my theory of consciousness, I realized that it leads naturally to a theory of time.

For clarity on this topic, review the following:

https://spikosauropod.com/2012/04/17/a-theory-of-god-and-everything/

https://spikosauropod.com/2014/04/25/consciousness-a-simple-model/

https://spikosauropod.com/2018/11/30/an-actual-theory-of-consciousness/

Time is largely an illusion. It is our way of interpreting the process of proceeding through a set of ordered steps. This theory explains the form that those steps actually take.

Quantum Time

Consciousness is the manifestation of a spirit. I define a spirit as follows:

A spirit is a choice function that exists where a choice is called for and it is impossible, even in principle, for the choice to be made by a deterministic algorithm. The magnitude of the spirit is equal to the product of the degrees of freedom of the total entangled choice to be made.

Quantum events, prior to collapse, are the undecided propositions that spirits act on and choose an outcome for. The decision of one proposition leads naturally to another undecided proposition. If we interpret quantum events according to the Everett interpretation, spirits decide the outcome of these propositions by moving to one choice or the other. It is a spirit’s transition from one proposition to the next that causes the spirit to experience the transition of time.

It is important to realize that, in a series of propositions where one proposition must be decided in order to give rise to the next, there is no possibility of the series of propositions being decided all at once. The resolution of one proposition is required before the next proposition exists to be resolved.

Since the perception of time is the ordered transition through the series of propositions, the “speed” with which these propositions manifest and are resolved is not a meaningful concept. A moment in time is defined as the transition from one proposition to the next.

These “moments” in time are actually time “quanta”. A quantum of time is the transition from one proposition to the next.

It seems likely that a series of propositions must be considered “entangled” in the same way that particles can be entangled. This is why a particular spirit exists to move through the entire series. However, this entanglement is a “cascading” entanglement that exists something like a domino effect.

It is possible that entangled events overlap both in “time” and space, giving rise to the spirit’s sense of the unification of the immediate past, present and future. This is in addition to the spirits sense of unity across space. Thus, there is conscious unity across space-time.

More Thoughts on Consciousness

3 Dec

After I published my last entry, I went back and edited it quite a few times. There are a lot of aspects to this theory and it is difficult to remember them all and get them in.

This theory is, from my perspective, a little past the stage plate tectonics was at when people first began to notice how the continents of North and South America seemed to fit together with the continents of Europe and Africa as if they were pieces of a jigsaw puzzle. I realized, as John Searle did, that the semantic nature of consciousness was at odds with the syntactical nature of the universe, and, low and behold, there was a mechanism available that provided the machinery so that something that is fundamentally different from the material universe could to seem to interact with it.

After I came up with the idea of a choice function that, in a sense, generated the universe, I realized that there were problems extrapolating it to smaller choice functions. How could a choice function that was forced into existence by the law of the excluded middle, somehow turn around and create a universe that still has “holes” that need to be filled by other smaller choice functions? Then, suddenly, I realized that Bell’s theorem provided the mechanism by which this could be accomplished.

Like Albert Einstein, I have often noted how remarkable it is that the universe seems to be designed as if it were meant to be figured out. What he said, precisely, was, “The most incomprehensible thing about the world is that it is comprehensible.”  The comprehensibility of the universe seems to be another characteristic, like the way that continents fit together, that hints at a deeper truth. That deeper truth is that we were meant to figure the universe out. The universe is a puzzle that was designed to be solved.

It is a tribute to the choice function I described in my last post that it was both able to make a universe that works, and one that doubles as a teaching tool. This is reminiscent of the DNA molecule that manages to contain the software of life, but is also its own hardware. When people invented magnetic tape that holds data, they were compelled to separate the hardware (the tape) from the software (the magnetized information). Nature found a way to combine the hardware and software and still get a better result.

Writing my last entry forced me to realize something that has been stirring in the back of my mind for many years. That idea is that there can be no real difference between a scientific law and a fundamental truth. Everything we see in the universe is somehow an outcropping of the fundamental truth that generates it. The law of the excluded middle is a law of thought, but so too is the statue of a gnome in your neighbor’s yard. Everything that you see is, at a deeper level, part of the fundamental truth of the universe. This realization makes it easier to accept the idea that everyone’s consciousness can be a fundamental truth.

This is an important aspect of my theory to understand. Consciousness is not a mechanism. It does not have any internal machinery. It is an axiom. It is truth. It may seem odd that a fundamental truth could come into existence 14 billion years after the universe came into existence, but that is only from the perspective of humans. If one looks at the universe top down instead of chronologically, one realizes that anything that happens in it is as much a fundamental truth as its initial state. Moreover, consciousness is not just a truth that begins at one’s birth and unfolds according to the initial state of that truth. It is a truth that manifests from the day one is born until the day one ceases to exist, even if the date one ceases to exist is at the end of time. This is not to say that the universe is deterministic. It may be true that the universe branches and that the branching is driven by actual free-will choices that, nevertheless, are fundamental truths of the universe.