Posted: Jun 19, 2022 9:03 am
by Spearthrower
jamest wrote:absolute chaos is a crock because it only applies to 'nothing', so does not apply at all, whereas absolute order can only apply to God.

Absolute chaos is a crock because it's not been defined as something real - rather, it's been defined as something unreal, and therefore of course it can't apply to anything - but that doesn't mean it applies to 'nothing' in the sense of <devoid of stuff>. 'Chaos', whether the ancient philosophical concept or modern day scientific and informed understanding of the idea (better read as 'disequilibrium') is not and can not be a property of no things - it can only be a property of a distribution of things and their relative interactions.

The problem is that the premise is flawed, and that flaw in the premise conveys subscription to a model of the universe that is simply not supported by our modern knowledge of the physical world.

The introduction of the term 'God' there is inescapably expository of the factors at play here. While it is not a required feature of the modern believer in our traditional monotheistic religions, it is still a readily identifiable trope of the kind of believer who thinks that their religion's preferred book is the last word of knowledge. Any objective findings about the world achieved via any method MUST adhere to the narrative demands of their holy text.

This form of belief is probably best embodied and exposed by Henry Morris, the founder of modern Creationism.

Henry Morris wrote:No geological difficulties, real or imagined, can be allowed to take precedence over the clear statements and necessary inferences of Scripture.

For Morris, and for people who believe in the same manner as Morris, the text (and their interpretation of that text) is literally the gospel, a word that to them means both

the teaching or divine revelation of Christ/God.

a thing that is axiomatically true.

So of course, being the divinely mandated description of God's own creation, the Bible is axiomatically true - the barometer, yardstick, litmus test and the entire concept of measurement by which to evaluate other evidence. Thus, if other evidence appears to be in conflict with this gospel, then the evidence is obviously false, or eventually we'll see the evidence the right way so that it conforms to the gospel.

This is exactly the same approach you have jamest, albeit that your gospel is individualist (ironically anti-Christian in that sense) and self-centred - the proponent and evaluator of the gospel is you, according to you. Thus you can't grasp why other people robustly and substantively disagree with you except to keep telling yourself that it's because their real world knowledge that you can't contend with is false, and that they'll eventually see the evidence the right way, which is of course the way you see it even while giving every appearance of mentally shirking away whenever something substantive is brought to bear. This keeps protecting you from honest self-analysis of your contributions in threads like these. You have expressed some degree of pride in getting a qualification in Philosophy, you talk of yourself as a philosopher, you frequently insist to other people that they can benefit from your knowledge, but I submit with some certainty bred of familiarity that any philosopher reading your work would not recognize themselves, their occupations, or their callings in the content of those posts.

If your position is not up for discussion, if there is no chance that you may be wrong, or that this may be uncovered through your interactions with other people, then you shouldn't bother with those people as they mean nothing to you at all - but when you choose to engage them, they also sense how contemptuous of them and respond in kind. You're the chap who can break the cycle - no one else.

Absolute chaos is, in effect, a strawman. It's got nothing to do with our modern knowledge about the universe. It's a conflation of ancient concepts (Platonic absolutes like 'chaos') + pop cultural references + pre-existing religious belief.

But what's truly bizarre, in the sense of convincing rational skeptics that your God contention is rational, reasonable, acceptable... is to define your God as possessing the property of 'absolute order'. This then would be a god that can effect no change, can experience no change - can not be a creator god.

Absolute order is characterized as wholly static because motion and interactions etc., are not 'absolute' - they violate the maximal 'absolute' position stated. In order to move or interact in this universe, energy differentials must exist, there must be difference, inhomogeneities, gradients of potential.

What you label 'chaos' is this 'difference', this potential for work to occur, this space for stuff to happen - it is a kind of constrained, ordered chaos, but that can't mean anything according to the way you view the world where chaos and order are mutually opposing forces. This then exposes the problem of using ancient concepts to discuss modern knowledge. I value our literary traditions and the history of thought across the world, but I also know that humanity is in the middle of a Golden Age of knowledge acquisition, and that even what we've found out in the last decade was an increase of knowledge orders of magnitude greater than any experienced in the history of our species. Ancient concepts are useful as metaphors, but we must know what those metaphors actually signify.

A system that is in maximal equilibrium is a wholly static system - nothing can ever take place there unless something outside interacts with it.

A system that is in maximal disequilibrium is not one I can personally envisage, and that could plausibly be a failing on my part, but it seems logically impossible because it simply cannot exist - at least from our universe's perspective, the greater the disequilibria, the more force that results to equilibrate, so a system of maximal disequilibrium cannot exist as it could never come about by any known process all of which are themselves experiencing the force of equilibration, and even if one could cause such a state to exist artificially, it would instantly upon its creation start not being in maximal disequilibrium. It's essentially a contradiction in terms.