## Causa Sui

For discussing anything related to physics, biology, chemistry, mathematics, and their practical applications.

Moderator: Flannel Jesus

### Causa Sui

Our language and our physics demand cause and effect. Our planet's spin causes gravity, for example. Yet the reality of our world also includes a certain amount of nonpredictability.

What would happen if that unpredictability, or indeterminism, led to a causa sui--a cause within itself? Isn't that the definition of the singularity?

Obviously, there can't be a second singularity, or it wouldn't be a singularity. But, given the indeterminism or unpredictablilty of the basic matter that comprises our universe, can we discount a causa sui happening sometime in the future?
"Be what you would seem to be - or, if you'd like it put more simply - never imagine yourself not to be otherwise than what it might appear to others that what you were or might have been was not otherwise than what you had been would have appeared to them to be otherwise."
— Lewis Carroll
lizbethrose
Philosopher

Posts: 3535
Joined: Wed Mar 23, 2011 6:55 am
Location: Pacific Northwest

### Re: Causa Sui

I'm not sure the notion of causa sui is coherent.
Doesn't being a causa-sui mean that something has existed prior to its existence???

I would say that nothing has caused X, but this is not the same as saying that X caused itself.

It wouldn't be causa sui, but would be causa-not-by-anything.

And I'm not sure that indeterminism makes sense. If something happens, it happens at a certain time. WHY?
If there is no reason, how can it be explained that it is specific in time? Why at time A, and not at time B?
samr

Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Jan 20, 2012 3:23 am

### Re: Causa Sui

Liz, in that OP you are using the word "determinism" differently than merely "cause and effect".
You are using it to mean whether something can be determined/known by people. That is different than whether something was caused.
Determinism refers to everything always having a cause, not that anyone could necessarily know the cause or the outcome.
"Indeterminate" means that a person cannot know the outcome. It has nothing at all to do with whether an event had a cause.

..and btw, the Earths spin is not what causes gravity.
Clarify, Verify, Instill, and Reinforce the Perception of Hopes and Threats unto Anentropic Harmony
Else
From THIS age of sleep, Homo-sapien shall never awake.

The Wise gather together to help one another in EVERY aspect of living.

You are always more insecure than you think, just not by what you think.
The only absolute certainty is formed by the absolute lack of alternatives.
It is not merely "do what works", but "to accomplish what purpose in what time frame at what cost".
As long as the authority is secretive, the population will be subjugated.

Amid the lack of certainty, put faith in the wiser to believe.
Devil's Motto: Make it look good, safe, innocent, and wise.. until it is too late to choose otherwise.

The Real God ≡ The reason/cause for the Universe being what it is = "The situation cannot be what it is and also remain as it is".
.
James S Saint
ILP Legend

Posts: 25976
Joined: Sun Apr 18, 2010 8:05 pm

### Re: Causa Sui

James, I never used the word 'determinism' in the OP. I said:

Our language and our physics demand cause and effect. Our planet's spin causes gravity, for example. Yet the reality of our world also includes a certain amount of nonpredictability.

What would happen if that unpredictability, or indeterminism, led to a causa sui--a cause within itself? Isn't that the definition of the singularity?

Obviously, there can't be a second singularity, or it wouldn't be a singularity. But, given the indeterminism or unpredictablilty of the basic matter that comprises our universe, can we discount a causa sui happening sometime in the future?

If you disagree with my first sentence, please tell me why you disagree, or what you don't understand, so we can start any discussion with a hand shake. I'm not being sardonic or ironic of any of those '-ic' things, btw.

samr, I tried to be careful with my choice of a definition of causa sui and went with dictionary meanings. To me, a causa sui means something happens that has no cause--or isn't the effect of a cause--but it becomes a cause in itself. In other words, it's a Big Bang. Only it doesn't have to be big. There's scientific speculation that these 'mini bangs' take place all the time and they have no known cause nor do they have a predictable effect.. They just happen. They may have no effect on the universe that we know of. They may have no effect at all nor do they need to have an effect except our grammar and our subsequent Laws of Physics seem to demand that they do.

If they do have an effect, that affect may be so immeasurably small that it won't become apparent for, perhaps, millenia--i.e., thousands of years. But those mini bangs could be an explanation for the apparent glitches in our evolution--the genetic 'mistakes' that can lead to disease, for example. Or the genetic advances that lead, ultimately, to new species.

As you can see, James, I'm not discounting determinism at all--I just don't understand the definitions of determinism that have been published in 'that other thread,' so I've gone off to find definitions of my own.

However, to get back to the topic.

What would happen to our grammar and our physics of there were to be a midi bang--or a series of them?
"Be what you would seem to be - or, if you'd like it put more simply - never imagine yourself not to be otherwise than what it might appear to others that what you were or might have been was not otherwise than what you had been would have appeared to them to be otherwise."
— Lewis Carroll
lizbethrose
Philosopher

Posts: 3535
Joined: Wed Mar 23, 2011 6:55 am
Location: Pacific Northwest

### Re: Causa Sui

lizbethrose wrote:James, I never used the word 'determinism' in the OP.

Well okay, but my point was that when you say "cause and effect", you have already inferred Determinism, as per;
de·ter·min·ism (d-tûrm-nzm)
n.
The philosophical doctrine that every state of affairs, including every human event, act, and decision is the inevitable consequence of antecedent states of affairs.

Yet when you actually used the word "determinism", you used it to mean "predictable".

To us hard nosed Determinists, the word doesn't infer anything concerning predictability, but rather merely that all physical reality is caused.

lizbethrose wrote:Our language and our physics demand cause and effect.

That is because it is inherent in any intellignece to assume causality, ie. "determism", else even the simplest mind could not think at all. Language could not work at all unless it is taken as axiom that the words being written or spoken were caused by an intent or purpose in their writing or speaking. If any of the words were not caused, then the sentences would be meaningless even if they could be interpreted to make some sense. Why bother to try to interpret some scribbling if it can't be assumed that a writer was actually purposely writing them, hence "cause", hence "determinism"?

lizbethrose wrote:Yet the reality of our world also includes a certain amount of nonpredictability.

Though that is true, it infers an equivocation of what the word determinism means. Non-predictability has nothing to do with cause and effect, but rather with ability to observe and deduce. Granted if there were no predictability, there also would be no determinism either, but then there wouldn't be any intelligence to worry about it either, all would be chaos only.

lizbethrose wrote:What would happen if that unpredictability, or indeterminism, led to a causa sui--a cause within itself? Isn't that the definition of the singularity?

Logically speaking, that cannot happen. The reason is a bit complicated, but first can we agree upon the idea that "cause and effect" means the type of determinism used in most philosophy discussions even though often in other discussions the words "determinate" and "indeterminate" mean merely "pre-chosen by someone" or "unpredictable by us"?

lizbethrose wrote:Obviously, there can't be a second singularity, or it wouldn't be a singularity.

Interesting that you notied that.
lizbethrose wrote: But, given the indeterminism or unpredictablilty of the basic matter that comprises our universe, can we discount a causa sui happening sometime in the future?

Yes we can.
Clarify, Verify, Instill, and Reinforce the Perception of Hopes and Threats unto Anentropic Harmony
Else
From THIS age of sleep, Homo-sapien shall never awake.

The Wise gather together to help one another in EVERY aspect of living.

You are always more insecure than you think, just not by what you think.
The only absolute certainty is formed by the absolute lack of alternatives.
It is not merely "do what works", but "to accomplish what purpose in what time frame at what cost".
As long as the authority is secretive, the population will be subjugated.

Amid the lack of certainty, put faith in the wiser to believe.
Devil's Motto: Make it look good, safe, innocent, and wise.. until it is too late to choose otherwise.

The Real God ≡ The reason/cause for the Universe being what it is = "The situation cannot be what it is and also remain as it is".
.
James S Saint
ILP Legend

Posts: 25976
Joined: Sun Apr 18, 2010 8:05 pm

### Re: Causa Sui

lizbethrose wrote:samr, I tried to be careful with my choice of a definition of causa sui and went with dictionary meanings. To me, a causa sui means something happens that has no cause--or isn't the effect of a cause--but it becomes a cause in itself. In other words, it's a Big Bang. Only it doesn't have to be big.

There's scientific speculation that these 'mini bangs' take place all the time and they have no known cause nor do they have a predictable effect.. They just happen. They may have no effect on the universe that we know of. They may have no effect at all nor do they need to have an effect except our grammar and our subsequent Laws of Physics seem to demand that they do.

To me, a causa sui means something happens that has no cause--or isn't the effect of a cause--but it becomes a cause in itself.

Ah, that isn't the dictionary definition.

This is what wikipedia says

Causa sui (Latin pronunciation: [kawsa sʊi], meaning cause of itself in Latin) denotes something which is generated within itself.
.....
In traditional Western theism, God cannot be created by any other force or being, therefore God is either self-caused (causa sui) or uncaused.

So, it is something that is the cause of itself.
According to your definition, it is not only something which has no cause, but also acts as a cause for other things.

I think that what is important for the traditional meaning, when referring to god, is not that he is a cause for other things, but that he isn't an effect of anything else.

To demarcate, I can think of a conceptual example : think of something that would have no causes, but also would have no effects at all. Somehow. It would fit under my definition of causa sui, but wouldn't fit for yours.
------------------------------------------------------------
I am not sure if a causa sui, in both senses of the term is possible.

1) If something has no cause, how can you explain that it happens at a certain time, to certain objects??? That it occurs here and there? Now and not then? At time A, and not at time B?
samr

Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Jan 20, 2012 3:23 am

### Re: Causa Sui

If something truly has no effects whatsoever, it cannot be said to exist (Rational Metaphysics 101). We are only concerned with what exists.
Clarify, Verify, Instill, and Reinforce the Perception of Hopes and Threats unto Anentropic Harmony
Else
From THIS age of sleep, Homo-sapien shall never awake.

The Wise gather together to help one another in EVERY aspect of living.

You are always more insecure than you think, just not by what you think.
The only absolute certainty is formed by the absolute lack of alternatives.
It is not merely "do what works", but "to accomplish what purpose in what time frame at what cost".
As long as the authority is secretive, the population will be subjugated.

Amid the lack of certainty, put faith in the wiser to believe.
Devil's Motto: Make it look good, safe, innocent, and wise.. until it is too late to choose otherwise.

The Real God ≡ The reason/cause for the Universe being what it is = "The situation cannot be what it is and also remain as it is".
.
James S Saint
ILP Legend

Posts: 25976
Joined: Sun Apr 18, 2010 8:05 pm

### Re: Causa Sui

Causa sui is an impossibility.
It allows for a feedback loop that can

Black Holes exist because gravity is based
on Causa sui.
The matter is there. Therefore it produces
gravity. Therefore the gravity compacts the
matter. Therefore the gravity becomes more intense.
Therefore the matter compacts more.. and so on.

Everything has a cause.

john
hooper

Posts: 58
Joined: Fri Nov 18, 2011 7:09 pm

### Re: Causa Sui

James S Saint wrote: If any of the words were not caused, then the sentences would be meaningless even if they could be interpreted to make some sense.

This makes no sense, at all. If you can make sense of something, even if it had no cause, then it's meaningless. That's what your saying, which is just gibberish. If you can make sense of something even with no cause, then it is certainly meaningful. It's just not meaningful in your unempirical "Rational Metaphysics"
Look at the triangle

What beautiful eyes and mouths she has

ZenKitty
Thinker

Posts: 656
Joined: Sun Dec 04, 2011 4:35 am
Location: Omnipresent

### Re: Causa Sui

hooper wrote:Causa sui is an impossibility. It allows for a feedback loop that can lead to a cascade-type thing like Black Holes.

This makes no sense. A feedback loop isn't an impossibility. If you actually believe in what is typically called the scientific method, it relies on feedback loops. You use theories to interpret the observations, and you use the observations to inform the theories. Around the circle you go with science, or the feedback loop. Second, your idea of Causa sui being an impossibility because of the feedback loop would mean that time travel is impossible, but it's not.
Look at the triangle

What beautiful eyes and mouths she has

ZenKitty
Thinker

Posts: 656
Joined: Sun Dec 04, 2011 4:35 am
Location: Omnipresent

### Re: Causa Sui

James S Saint wrote: If any of the words were not caused, then the sentences would be meaningless even if they could be interpreted to make some sense.

Of course the converse is a different story entirely.
Just because some words actually do have cause and meaning, doesn't mean every moron will be able to see it.

Board Warning - there's no reason to call anyone a moron, James.
Clarify, Verify, Instill, and Reinforce the Perception of Hopes and Threats unto Anentropic Harmony
Else
From THIS age of sleep, Homo-sapien shall never awake.

The Wise gather together to help one another in EVERY aspect of living.

You are always more insecure than you think, just not by what you think.
The only absolute certainty is formed by the absolute lack of alternatives.
It is not merely "do what works", but "to accomplish what purpose in what time frame at what cost".
As long as the authority is secretive, the population will be subjugated.

Amid the lack of certainty, put faith in the wiser to believe.
Devil's Motto: Make it look good, safe, innocent, and wise.. until it is too late to choose otherwise.

The Real God ≡ The reason/cause for the Universe being what it is = "The situation cannot be what it is and also remain as it is".
.
James S Saint
ILP Legend

Posts: 25976
Joined: Sun Apr 18, 2010 8:05 pm

### Re: Causa Sui

We don't know if the Big Bang was or was not a causa sui. It was a theory posited by Abbee Georges Lamaitre, the astronomer. But we all know that. It's also the cosmological model assumed by most of science today. If we assume the Big Bang theory is a workable model and as we get better and better 'eyes' to 'see' with, we can, in fact, go back in time. As we do so, we can 'observe' quarks--or, at least, the red shift they produce. Protons and neutrons are made up of quarks--different combinations of different types of quarks. When that hadrons (collections of quarks) collide, they produce 'mini-bangs.'

It could be said that those 'mini-bangs' have a 'cause'--it depends on your definition of 'cause.' Is the 'cause' because the two hadrons collided? Yes. But what caused the two hadrons to collide? Was there no cause? A causa sui? Or was there a cause,--or another layer of the onion we have yet to discover?

As for the effects of such collisions on our galaxy, we really can't say; however, as I've said, they could have resulted in small glitches in our galaxy's evolution and ours. This is pure speculation only. But we were much closer to those mini-bangs when they happened--so who really knows.

I think there's a lot of fear over the possible discovery of the Higgs' Bosun--the god particle. What happens if it is 'discovered'? What happens if it isn't?
"Be what you would seem to be - or, if you'd like it put more simply - never imagine yourself not to be otherwise than what it might appear to others that what you were or might have been was not otherwise than what you had been would have appeared to them to be otherwise."
— Lewis Carroll
lizbethrose
Philosopher

Posts: 3535
Joined: Wed Mar 23, 2011 6:55 am
Location: Pacific Northwest

### Re: Causa Sui

James S Saint wrote:
James S Saint wrote: If any of the words were not caused, then the sentences would be meaningless even if they could be interpreted to make some sense.

Of course the converse is a different story entirely.
Just because some words actually do have cause and meaning, doesn't mean every moron will be able to see it.

Or that anyone would be able to see it in the first the place. So cause doesn't even say that you will be able to see it, let alone if there was none. But you seem to think that if there is none, then anything we make sense of it wouldn't be meaningful. No sense.
Look at the triangle

What beautiful eyes and mouths she has

ZenKitty
Thinker

Posts: 656
Joined: Sun Dec 04, 2011 4:35 am
Location: Omnipresent

### Re: Causa Sui

Well, I'm afraid time is up Liz. I gave it a chance.

I have to join FJ's concern that your incentive in these discussions is not an actual desire to learn/understand, but rather such a notion is masking a deeper concern, even from yourself I suspect.

The reality of Causa Sui is not that hard to fully comprehend, but one must actually make a genuine effort so as to get "out of the woods" as it were.
Clarify, Verify, Instill, and Reinforce the Perception of Hopes and Threats unto Anentropic Harmony
Else
From THIS age of sleep, Homo-sapien shall never awake.

The Wise gather together to help one another in EVERY aspect of living.

You are always more insecure than you think, just not by what you think.
The only absolute certainty is formed by the absolute lack of alternatives.
It is not merely "do what works", but "to accomplish what purpose in what time frame at what cost".
As long as the authority is secretive, the population will be subjugated.

Amid the lack of certainty, put faith in the wiser to believe.
Devil's Motto: Make it look good, safe, innocent, and wise.. until it is too late to choose otherwise.

The Real God ≡ The reason/cause for the Universe being what it is = "The situation cannot be what it is and also remain as it is".
.
James S Saint
ILP Legend

Posts: 25976
Joined: Sun Apr 18, 2010 8:05 pm

### Re: Causa Sui

James S Saint wrote:Well, I'm afraid time is up Liz. I gave it a chance.

I have to join FJ's concern that your incentive in these discussions is not an actual desire to learn/understand, but rather such a notion is masking a deeper concern, even from yourself I suspect.

The reality of Causa Sui is not that hard to fully comprehend, but one must actually make a genuine effort so as to get "out of the woods" as it were.

James, I've been waiting for your reply--not 'lying' in wait anticipating a 'pounce' to whatever, just waiting to see what you have to say.

Our language and our physics demand cause and effect. Our planet's spin causes gravity, for example. Yet the reality of our world also includes a certain amount of nonpredictability.

What would happen if that unpredictability, or indeterminism, led to a causa sui--a cause within itself? Isn't that the definition of the singularity?

Obviously, there can't be a second singularity, or it wouldn't be a singularity. But, given the indeterminism or unpredictablilty of the basic matter that comprises our universe, can we discount a causa sui happening sometime in the future?

That's my OP.

lizbethrose wrote:James, I never used the word 'determinism' in the OP.

James S. Saint wote

Well okay, but my point was that when you say "cause and effect", you have already inferred Determinism, as per;

de·ter·min·ism (d-tûrm-nzm)
n.
The philosophical doctrine that every state of affairs, including every human event, act, and decision is the inevitable consequence of antecedent states of affairs.

Yet when you actually used the word "determinism", you used it to mean "predictable".

To us hard nosed Determinists, the word doesn't infer anything concerning predictability, but rather merely that all physical reality is caused.

You're assuming what I mean through inference. That's your way. Can you show me the difference between the words 'predictable' and 'determined' as those words have been used by me and by hard determinists? IOW, is what is determined by past 'causes' also not predictable. If not, how is there cause and effect?

James, I wouldn't be honest if I said, innocently, "Moi--trying to upset an established philosophy?" But I am being honest when I say, "Moi? I'm questioning it, is all."

If the astronomical singularity known as the Big Bang was a cause without a cause--a causa sui--and if other 'bangs' have been observed as having happened in the past, are somehow 'determined,' therefore, not causes without a cause, but causes with a cause, then can you please tell me what the 'cause' is, was, has been, will be--whatever.

This thread is, however, speculation. What would happen to our grammar and our physics if something happened without known cause--within the closer regions of our galaxy?. That could already have happened in our past. Maybe our genetics, grammar, and science have already been affected. ???
"Be what you would seem to be - or, if you'd like it put more simply - never imagine yourself not to be otherwise than what it might appear to others that what you were or might have been was not otherwise than what you had been would have appeared to them to be otherwise."
— Lewis Carroll
lizbethrose
Philosopher

Posts: 3535
Joined: Wed Mar 23, 2011 6:55 am
Location: Pacific Northwest

### Re: Causa Sui

lizbethrose wrote:Our language and our physics demand cause and effect. Our planet's spin causes gravity, for example. Yet the reality of our world also includes a certain amount of nonpredictability.

What would happen if that unpredictability, or indeterminism, led to a causa sui--a cause within itself? Isn't that the definition of the singularity?

Obviously, there can't be a second singularity, or it wouldn't be a singularity. But, given the indeterminism or unpredictablilty of the basic matter that comprises our universe, can we discount a causa sui happening sometime in the future?

I mention some of this here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=174296

But what I struggle to understand here is how you can leap from unpredictability (the inability for an observer to predict the outcome of an event) to causa sui (an event which causes itself and which is not part of a chain of causation). This does not follow. Whether an observer can or cannot predict an outcome does not necessarily reflect in any way on whether that event is the ongoing manifestation of past interaction, on whether it is caused or not.

I would ask you to provide an example of one beginning or end, or alternatively an absolutely inert object which does not change in any way, hence does not interact with anything, hence does not participate in causation. That would seem to me to be a singularity. Or perhaps the definition of non-existence. Take your pick.

apaosha
Daeva

Posts: 1045
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 3:12 am
Location: Ireland

### Re: Causa Sui

apaosha wrote:I would ask you to provide an example of one beginning or end, or alternatively an absolutely inert object which does not change in any way, hence does not interact with anything, hence does not participate in causation. That would seem to me to be a singularity. Or perhaps the definition of non-existence. Take your pick.

Is the universe acceptable? It, presumably, "does not interact with anything, hence does not participate in causation" and it "does not change in any way". That would seem to be what you're looking for.
Look at the triangle

What beautiful eyes and mouths she has

ZenKitty
Thinker

Posts: 656
Joined: Sun Dec 04, 2011 4:35 am
Location: Omnipresent

### Re: Causa Sui

lizbethrose wrote:This thread is, however, speculation. What would happen to our grammar and our physics if something happened without known cause--within the closer regions of our galaxy?. That could already have happened in our past. Maybe our genetics, grammar, and science have already been affected. ???

I think the answer is simple, and what James S Saint would say, with slight modification. We would create a "cause", or invent a "cause" for what had no cause. I mean, why go without a cause when you can "easily" create a cause?
Look at the triangle

What beautiful eyes and mouths she has

ZenKitty
Thinker

Posts: 656
Joined: Sun Dec 04, 2011 4:35 am
Location: Omnipresent

### Re: Causa Sui

James S Saint wrote:If something truly has no effects whatsoever, it cannot be said to exist (Rational Metaphysics 101). We are only concerned with what exists.

Then anything and everything imaginable can be said to exist.

I live on an extremely busy road here where pedestrians almost as reckless as the drivers, so you can imagine the number of people who have been hit by vehicles on this road. It's poorly lit too, so that only adds to the confusion at night or in bad weather. Sometimes I'll be driving home at night and catch a pedestrian coming at me out of the corner of my eye, which startles me and might cause me to double-take or break suddenly. A small percentage of those occurrences result in the realization that there was never a person there. Maybe it was debris blowing in the wind, maybe it was never anything at all. To the extent that I assumed what I saw was a person, or tangible object, I can say that object is what startled me. So, does the person necessarily exist?
"Man is the animal that laughs at himself."
—Robert A Heinlein

statiktech
SonOfABitchBastard

Posts: 5413
Joined: Thu May 17, 2007 8:53 pm
Location: Atlanta, GA

### Re: Causa Sui

ZenKitty wrote:
apaosha wrote:I would ask you to provide an example of one beginning or end, or alternatively an absolutely inert object which does not change in any way, hence does not interact with anything, hence does not participate in causation. That would seem to me to be a singularity. Or perhaps the definition of non-existence. Take your pick.

Is the universe acceptable? It, presumably, "does not interact with anything, hence does not participate in causation" and it "does not change in any way". That would seem to be what you're looking for.

The universe is existence, therefore it is interaction, is causation and is under a state of constant change.

The universe is not a thing or whole such that it can be said to have borders with which it can interact with something else. The universe, reality, existence is a condition and therefore infinite. Otherwise one is obliged to attempt to describe the extent of reality and the nature of it's border with nothingness. Which is absurd.

My intent with asking the question was to receive an example of that which is nowhere in evidence; the non-existant, the without-condition.

apaosha
Daeva

Posts: 1045
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 3:12 am
Location: Ireland

### Re: Causa Sui

apaosha wrote:The universe is existence, therefore it is interaction, is causation and is under a state of constant change.

The universe is not a thing or whole such that it can be said to have borders with which it can interact with something else. The universe, reality, existence is a condition and therefore infinite. Otherwise one is obliged to attempt to describe the extent of reality and the nature of it's border with nothingness. Which is absurd.

My intent with asking the question was to receive an example of that which is nowhere in evidence; the non-existant, the without-condition.

Hmm, "[universe] is interaction", but what does it interact with? After all, interaction does imply two, but you seem to be saying there's nothing else but that, which would mean that universe isn't interaction. And nope, universe isn't under a state of constant change. Einsteins theory of space-time states that nothing changes. It's static, which is the opposite of change. Think I'm lying? Evidence for my assertion...

"The idea of reality being four-dimensional is strange and counter-intuitive. Even Einstein himself at first had difficulty accepting Minkowski's suggestion-though later he was won over and declared 'henceforth we must deal with a four-dimensional existence instead of, hitherto, the evolution of a three-dimensional existence'...One of the disconcerting features about four-dimensional spacetime is that nothing changes. Changes occur in time. But spacetime is not in time; time is in spacetime (as one of its axes). It appears to be saying that all of time-past, present, and future-exists on an equal footing. In other words, events that we customarily think of as no longer existing because they lie in the past, do exist in spacetime. In the same way, future events which we normally think of as not yet existing do exist in spacetime. There is nothing in this picture to select out the present instant, labeled 'now', as being anything special-separating past from future...We are dealing with a strangely static existence, one that is sometimes called 'the block universe'.” Russell Stannard

"There is no dynamics within space-time itself: nothing ever moves therein; nothing happens; nothing changes....In particular, one does not think of particles as "moving through" space-time, or as "following along" their world-lines. Rather, particles are just "in" space-time, once and for all, and the world-line represents, all at once the complete life history of the particle." Robert Geroch

"In space-time, nothing happens or changes because it contains all time at once." Max Tegmark

And I'm not sure what you mean about non-existent and having no evidence for it. Don't you have evidence that there's no other universe? That would seem to be evidence for the non-existent or something like that. But hey, we can also throw out the future, in one sense, because it's non-existent or we have no evidence for it. That would show a non-existent. And if you want to go the way of non-existent is absurd. I'd have to ask you, "Does existent have a contradiction or contradictory?". If you say no, then it makes no sense. There's no contradiction of it and makes it logically worthless. If it does have a contradiction, then when we have evidence for "existent", it also means we have evidence for the non-existent. And if we also take your point of constant change, then all of a sudden what is existent would become non-existent, which means that we have evidence for that. So, you might want to try again.

And you saying that the universe is infinite would be just as absurd as you think the non-existent is absurd.
Look at the triangle

What beautiful eyes and mouths she has

ZenKitty
Thinker

Posts: 656
Joined: Sun Dec 04, 2011 4:35 am
Location: Omnipresent

### Re: Causa Sui

ZenKitty wrote:Hmm, "[universe] is interaction", but what does it interact with? After all, interaction does imply two, but you seem to be saying there's nothing else but that, which would mean that universe isn't interaction.

What would existence, the universe, reality be interacting with? My point is that interaction is one of the prerequisites of existence.... not that existence interacts with, what? Non-existence?

This ties in with what I've been saying in the Free Will thread; the actor/act dichotomy. In this case you look at my post and you think that existence = interaction means that I am saying that existence is interacting with something. This is not the case, I assure you.

What I am saying is that existence is the condition of interaction between phenomena such that they affect and are affected by eachother and so change. And that the ongoing manifestation of this interaction, constantly mutable, constantly changing is referred to as time. Movement in time is a prerequisite for existence.

And nope, universe isn't under a state of constant change. Einsteins theory of space-time states that nothing changes. It's static, which is the opposite of change. Think I'm lying? Evidence for my assertion...

"The idea of reality being four-dimensional is strange and counter-intuitive. Even Einstein himself at first had difficulty accepting Minkowski's suggestion-though later he was won over and declared 'henceforth we must deal with a four-dimensional existence instead of, hitherto, the evolution of a three-dimensional existence'...One of the disconcerting features about four-dimensional spacetime is that nothing changes. Changes occur in time. But spacetime is not in time; time is in spacetime (as one of its axes). It appears to be saying that all of time-past, present, and future-exists on an equal footing. In other words, events that we customarily think of as no longer existing because they lie in the past, do exist in spacetime. In the same way, future events which we normally think of as not yet existing do exist in spacetime. There is nothing in this picture to select out the present instant, labeled 'now', as being anything special-separating past from future...We are dealing with a strangely static existence, one that is sometimes called 'the block universe'.” Russell Stannard

"There is no dynamics within space-time itself: nothing ever moves therein; nothing happens; nothing changes....In particular, one does not think of particles as "moving through" space-time, or as "following along" their world-lines. Rather, particles are just "in" space-time, once and for all, and the world-line represents, all at once the complete life history of the particle." Robert Geroch

"In space-time, nothing happens or changes because it contains all time at once." Max Tegmark

I wonder whether I am to take Minkowski's 4-dimensional spacetime and these guy's understanding of it separately, because this is nothing more than a dismissal of time as a measure of change by combining the sum of this change and referring to it as spacetime. It's still change, there is still interaction, there is still a distinct difference between conditions "then" as opposed to "now" or the future.

Wordplay, and from the quotes logically inconsistent. If a particle's "world line" represents the sum of its history in past, present and future then there is the tacit admission that change is in fact occurring. However, conflation of the particles entire history into one, as "spacetime", somehow allows this change to be considered non-change... as "spacetime" allows one to view change itself as an absolute which is itself unchanging, which is a juvenile argument at best.

Am I coming close to your point here? Let's continue on.

All I can do in an attempt to understand the universe is to use what I perceive and from that perception to extrapolate into probabilities. I see interaction and consequently change. Nowhere do I see stasis or phenomena manifesting into or out of existence from/into nothing. The present is an ongoing manifestation of the past. I say ongoing because it is constantly moving and never becomes static in time. The present is forever fading into the future. The future is merely the as-yet unmanifested condition of the present.
I am not saying that change is absolute but I am saying that it is more probable than stasis or an uncaused phenomenon. It is not a matter of either/or, it is a matter of likelihood based upon perception.

Nowhere am I dealing in absolutes.

And I'm not sure what you mean about non-existent and having no evidence for it. Don't you have evidence that there's no other universe? That would seem to be evidence for the non-existent or something like that.

My meaning is that if a phenomenon does not participate in interactivity it cannot affect nor be affected by other phenomenon. It is, in effect, not there. I defined this non-interaction as non-existence as a consequence of defining existence as interactivity.
I would be interested in evidence which details the nature of a non-interactive phenomenon, as it would seem to me that this is logically impossible.

But hey, we can also throw out the future, in one sense, because it's non-existent or we have no evidence for it. That would show a non-existent.

According to your quoted reference of '"spacetime" it does exist, in one amalgated whole containing past present, future and all that existed, exists or will exist.

And if you want to go the way of non-existent is absurd.

My point here was in relation to a supposed "border" of reality, which one is obliged to posit if one does not accept reality as being infinite in extent. Therefore, if we take existence as being the condition of.... existence.... than a finite extent of existence would have non-existence as it's border. That is what is absurd, that one must invent a condition which is nowhere in evidence to satisfy the requirements of a spacially finite universe.

Yes, as I have defined it above.

If you say no, then it makes no sense. There's no contradiction of it and makes it logically worthless. If it does have a contradiction, then when we have evidence for "existent", it also means we have evidence for the non-existent. And if we also take your point of constant change, then all of a sudden what is existent would become non-existent, which means that we have evidence for that. So, you might want to try again.

Again, my point was that a non-interacting phenomenon is nowhere in evidence as the condition of its non-interaction forbids its detection. That to be considered evident it would have to be possible to be perceived, ie capable of interaction which by definition it is not.

What you are in fact asserting is that evidence of absence is itself evidence, while I am using the term to refer to perceptibility.
So, you are not addressing my point.

And you saying that the universe is infinite would be just as absurd as you think the non-existent is absurd.

Then kindly do me the favour of describing the beginning of the universe, either ex nihilo or causa sui, the end of the universe (something into nothing) and also the edge or border of the universe.

It would be nice if you could provide some evidence as well.

apaosha
Daeva

Posts: 1045
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 3:12 am
Location: Ireland

### Re: Causa Sui

apaosha, I haven't seen anyone so "spot on" as you have been in the last few posts. If you wanted you could add a little more conceptual precision so as to even remove the few areas of doubt that you have expressed, but you are definitely within the bulls eye.
Existence Meaningfully Defined
Clarify, Verify, Instill, and Reinforce the Perception of Hopes and Threats unto Anentropic Harmony
Else
From THIS age of sleep, Homo-sapien shall never awake.

The Wise gather together to help one another in EVERY aspect of living.

You are always more insecure than you think, just not by what you think.
The only absolute certainty is formed by the absolute lack of alternatives.
It is not merely "do what works", but "to accomplish what purpose in what time frame at what cost".
As long as the authority is secretive, the population will be subjugated.

Amid the lack of certainty, put faith in the wiser to believe.
Devil's Motto: Make it look good, safe, innocent, and wise.. until it is too late to choose otherwise.

The Real God ≡ The reason/cause for the Universe being what it is = "The situation cannot be what it is and also remain as it is".
.
James S Saint
ILP Legend

Posts: 25976
Joined: Sun Apr 18, 2010 8:05 pm

### Re: Causa Sui

What would happen if that unpredictability, or indeterminism, led to a causa sui--a cause within itself?

Rephrased:
What would happen if unpredictability, or indeterminism, caused a causa sui ?

...

Language has the deceptive quality of allowing grammatically correct phrasings of perfect nonsense.

But perhaps there is a deeper question behind this glaring anti-logic. Perhaps what is meant is: what if non-discernible causes caused a discernible cause? And what might be meant with that is this: what if such a thing as life came into existence? And what is masked by this question might be: what if I am actually free to myself, despite what I've been taught about causation? And behind this: what the hell have I been doing all this nonsense for along? Behind this question may be the realization of the spirit: I am that I am.

But then it may just have been the comical error that appears at first sight.
Thunderbolt steers all things.
http://beforethelight.forumotion.com - Tree of Life Academy

The strong do what they can, the weak accept what they must.
- Thucydides

Fixed Cross
Doric Usurper

Posts: 7436
Joined: Fri Jul 15, 2011 12:53 am
Location: the black ships

### Re: Causa Sui

Reading, reading, blah blah blah skipped the second half of the increasingly boring posts.

Causality is a cognitive assuption stemming from a subjective perceiving mindset looking for a metric to intrpete threats and aims. Beauty develops out of this root, as does our sense of space and time, but in our species save under certain neurological conditions they are not unified, and when in the rare case it is, its under widely ranging circumstances that do not share a common symtomatic root across the spectrum where we can claim the syndromes are akin to one another.

A juxtaposition in and of itself when judged by subjective and within that subjective mindset logical asdumptions as to what IS, OUGHT, CAN, and POSSIBLE, can seriously derail any depositional conclusion as to if Causa Sui exists or not. When we say yes, the engineer will say yes, the scientific theorist no.

We are left with a paradox of the cognitive sorts underlining the will to pursue this dichotomy; sui sponte is the origins of the causa sui debate. It is the inherent cause that willed itself into being as to determine others, and declare itself. There was no causality before this sui sponte, and we do not know if the capacity to causality is inherent in intelligence or not. The universe may appear quite differently to a alien mind.
Support "The Angels of East Africa" on smile.Amazon.com it is free to do, they donate 0.05% of your purchase cost to them, or give donations directly via:

http://www.machinegunpreacher.org

Recently hidden post:
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=192227&p=2649513#p2649513

The Golden Turd
Fucking Unflushable

Posts: 9450
Joined: Wed Nov 23, 2011 6:37 am
Location: Apparently Well Up Manical Mongoose's Ass

Next