The guiding idea behind formalism is that mathematics is not a body of propositions representing an abstract sector of reality but is much more akin to a game, bringing with it no more commitment to an ontology of objects or properties than ludo or chess.
Several philosophical problems arising from the physics of consciousness, including identity, duplication, teleportation, simulation, self-location, and the Boltzmann Brain problem, hinge on one of the most deeply held but unnecessary convictions of physicalism: the assumption that brain states and their corresponding conscious states can in principle be copied. In this paper I will argue against this assumption by attempting to prove the Unique History Theorem, which states, essentially, that conscious correlations to underlying quantum mechanical measurement events must increase with time and that every conscious state uniquely determines its history from an earlier conscious state.
The idea of the multiverse — or the theoretical possibility of infinite parallel universes–straddles a strange world between science fiction and a plausible hypothesis.
Is math real or simply something made up by mathematicians? You can’t physically touch a number yet using numbers we’re able to build skyscrapers and launch rockets into space.
In this book of “trialogues,” the late psychedelic visionary and shamanologist Terence McKenna, acclaimed biologist and originator of the morphogenetic fields theory Rupert Sheldrake, and mathematician and chaos theory scientist Ralph Abraham explore the relationships between chaos and creativity and their connection to cosmic consciousness. Their observations call into question our current views of reality, morality, and the nature of life in the universe.
Although the essays deal with a variety of topics, they all hover around a set of interrelated general themes. Braude’s targets include memory trace theory, inner-cause theories of human behavior generally, Sheldrake’s theory of morphogenetic fields, widespread but simplistic views on the nature of human abilities, multiple personality and moral responsibility, the efficacy of prayer, and the shoddy tactics often used to discredit research on dissociation and parapsychology
This work was the first sustained philosophical study of psychic phenomena to follow C.D. Broad’s LECTURES ON PSYCHICAL RESEARCH, written nearly twenty years earlier. The author clearly defines the categories of psychic phenomena, surveys the most compelling experimental data, and traces their implications for the philosophy of science and the philosophy of mind. He considers carefully the abstract presuppositions underlying leading theories of psychic phenomena, and he offers bold criticisms of both mechanistic analyses of communication and psychophysical identity theories.
If you needed to tell someone what numbers are and how they work, without using the notion of number in your answer, could you do it?
There are some pretty out-there explanations for the processes at work behind the incredibly successful mathematics of quantum mechanics – things are both waves and particles at the same time, the act of observation defines reality, cats are alive and dead, or even: the universe is constantly splitting into infinite alternate realities. The weird results of quantum experiments seem to demand weird explanations of the nature of reality.
Stephen E. Braude