Matthew Shute wrote:jamest wrote:UndercoverElephant wrote:
MWI has already been tested with reason, and it passes. I know of nobody out there who has provided any grounds for rejecting MWI for being logically inconsistent (with itself).
You're adopting a different stance to Matt, then - who thinks that the MWI is untestable altogether - but whether "it passes" is obviously open to debate and to whether the MWI has received the full extent of rational scrutiny that is applicable to it.
No, I said that you can't refute it logically. You can't refute it logically because it is logically consistent. Because various other interpretations of QM are also logically consistent,
Logically consistent from a purely materialist/physicalist perspective? I question that. Certainly, if 'one thing' has the potential to be countless physical universes, then that ~thing~ itself is not a physical universe/object. Physical status is what that ~thing~ achieves, not what it is.
Further, the wave/particle nature of reality is what lends credance to the MWI, but the reality of any particular world seems contingent upon observation/experience. That is, the [particle] reality of any other worlds seems contingent upon there being an observation/experience of them. Observation/experience are apparently integral and necessary, then, to any 'physical reality'. This is at-odds, I think, with any purely materialist/physicalist narrative, so that only idealist perspectives are 'logically consistent' with the MWI.
It is not my position, then, that the MWI is logically inconsistent. It is my position that the MWI is not logically consistent with a purely materialist/physicalist outlook.
Arguably, these are metaphysical positions, then. And you surely know by now my opinion on that one!
The problem is that the MWI is a metaphysical theory, in that it implicates a reality beyond that which we can see (this particular world). If you have no desire to entertain metaphysical theories, then you must reject outright the MWI.
To clear up my position on the wave function itself: yes, it is a mathematical construct. As to empirical or not, I admit that I was slightly fishing to see whether you categorise mathematics as part of "the experienced world"/world of appearances/etc,
I would no more categorise all mathematics as part of (being directly about) this empirical world than I would categorise all philosophy as part of (and directly about) this empirical world.
which is distinct from your metaphysical reality, seemingly aloof from anything we can access.
Metaphysics is accessible and questionable via reason alone. One problem metaphysicists have is in explaining to others that our minds do transcend the bounds of what this empirical reality can feed into them. Certainly, the MWI is an instance of this transcendence at work.
In that post, I was telling you that I reject your philosophy. To you, the important thing is a reality beyond experience. What is important to me is the content of experience, this world of appearances, relationships with the people I know, how they relate to each other, nature, forests, buzzards, birch ploypores, my cat, the sun, science, the cosmos, music, literature, films, computer games, conversations, and so on.
Experience matters to idealists, also. However, the philosophy of an idealist entails that there be a normative element to one's view of experience which differs significantly from the normative views of one's detractors.
You seem to care about some abstract thing "out there" which you can't experience.
Ironically, for an idealist, everything is ultimately 'abstract' except that ~thing~. Further, the idealist does not seek to know something "out there", but something about its own reality.
If you could experience it, it would fall victim to your own philosophy, and you would cease to care about it so much.
This depends upon how you define experience. It has always been assumed that experience was about other things, so that we can only experience other things. For an idealist, however, this assumption ultimately crumbles to nothing - since it seems that all experience is essentially of and about oneself: there are no other things, for an idealist, so how could this not be consistent with that view?