Causality debunked.

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Photo by Eneida Nieves from Pexels

Researchers at the University of Vienna and the Austrian Academy of Sciences develop a new theoretical framework to describe how causal structures in quantum mechanics transform. They analyze under which conditions quantum mechanics allows the causal structure of the world to become “fuzzy.” In this case, a fixed order of events is not possible. The results were published in the journal Physical Review X.

The idea that events occur one after the other in a fixed causal order is part of our intuitive picture of the physical world. Imagine that Alice can send a message to Bob via a wire that connects them. Alice decides to have a barbecue and can invite Bob via the wire connection. If he gets invited, Bob decides to prepare some Ćevapčići to bring along. This is an example where the event in which Alice decides to invite Bob to the barbecue influences the event in which Bob decides to prepare food. Such an order of events characterizes a definite causal structure. However, research in the foundations of quantum mechanics suggests that, at the quantum level, causal structures may be “indefinite”. In an indefinite causal structure there might not be a fixed order in which events happen, i.e. whether Alice influences Bob or Bob influences Alice might not be defined.

“Our results demonstrate that under physically reasonable assumptions of continuity and reversibility a world with definite causal order will never become a world with an indefinite causal order and vice versa”, says Esteban Castro, one of the authors of the paper. This insight may lead to a more complete understanding of what the role of causality is in the quantum world. (1)

In the beginning there was chaos.

And then the cosmos was born.

We like to look into patterns.

We like to indulge into our hallucinations.

But every night, when we fall asleep, we remember.

It is not the Sun we celebrate.

What exists cannot change.

We are not scientists.

We are poets.

Admiring the Moon…

The Metamodernist Manifesto. Turning in cirlces. Go back to the beginning…

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In 2011, Luke Turner published a Metamodernist Manifesto. The manifesto recognised “oscillation to be the natural order of the world” and called for an end to “the inertia resulting from a century of modernist ideological naivety and the cynical insincerity of its antonymous bastard child”. Instead, it proposed metamodernism as “the mercurial condition between and beyond irony and sincerity, naivety and knowingness, relativism and truth, optimism and doubt, in pursuit of a plurality of disparate and elusive horizons”. The text cited the work of Vermeulen and van den Akker, and concluded “we must go forth and oscillate!”. Turner later credited his manifesto to the actor Shia LaBeouf as part of the pair’s wider artistic collaboration. (1)

Doubt everything.

This is the essence of meta-modernism.

Doubt everything.

Go back in time to the era of Parmenides. Ask him again.

Can you doubt causality? Can you doubt randomness? Because everything at the end is a matter of choice. People doubt that there can be a First Cause which needs no cause of its own, only to “prove” that the whole cosmos itself can exist without a cause! Turning in circles, we try to convince ourselves we are dashing in straight line. But we are not. We are standing still to where we started from. Existing from nothing. Our only way “out” is to re-unite with everything and re-define that “everything” into “nothing” once again…

DNA. On the edge… Breath in…. Breath out!

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For a skin cell to do its job, it must turn on a completely different set of genes than a liver cell — and keep genes it doesn’t need switched off. One way of turning off large groups of genes at once is to send them to “time-out” at the edge of the nucleus, where they are kept quiet. New research from Johns Hopkins sheds light on how DNA gets sent to the nucleus’ far edge, a process critical to controlling genes and determining cell fate.
A report on the work appeared in the Jan. 5 issue of the Journal of Cell Biology.
“We discovered a DNA sequence and a specific set of protein tags that send DNA to the edge of the nucleus, where its genes get turned off,” says Karen Reddy, Ph.D., an assistant professor of biological chemistry at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

Picture the nucleus as a round room filled with double strands of DNA hanging in suspension as they are opened, closed, clipped, patched and read by proteins that come and go. At the edge of the nucleus, just inside its flexible walls, the lamina meshwork provides shape and support. But accumulating evidence from the past few years suggests that this meshwork is not just a structure, but is crucial to the cell’s ability to turn large segments of genes off in one fell swoop. It’s as though certain stretches of DNA feel a magnetic pull that keeps them clinging to the lamina in a state of “time-out,” inaccessible to the proteins that could be working on them. (1)

Great! Just great!
A great mechanism.
Doing things in order to achieve things.
Or are the things which that mechanism achieves the things we a posteriory believe it was designed to achieve?

What is a plan?
What is a result?
What is a cause?

We are confused.
We do not have an objective criterion to set the mark.
We do not know what “normal” is.

So let’s accept there is not.
Let’s accept that there is no plan. And that there is.
Let’s accept that these is no cause. And that everything have one.
Let’s accept that there are no results. And that everything is one.
Let’s go craaaaazy ese!
Let’s pound our heads to the wall. (not hard enough, you know)
Let’s just accept there is nothing.
Let’s understand that everything comes from our mind.
Let’s open our selves to the nothingness of the world.

Let’s inhale the cosmos.

One deep breath.
And we will be One…
Inhale…

Hidden assumptions in everyday speaking. Dangerous dogmas…

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We every day talk. Simple phrases which convey meanings are exchanged between people. And yet, we do not realize how much meaning lies within these words. Because we should not forget that every word or sentence we use, bears a meaning which was carved from thousands of years of debates between philosophers before it reached us.

Take for example the “simple” phrase “I went to the supermarket yesterday and bought some bananas because I was hungry”.

Simple right? Self-explanatory right? Not.

It should be simple but it is not. Many philosophical assumptions lie behind this very “simple” everyday phrase and the dangerous thing is that we do not realize it. In that way, many philosophically-questioned assumptions are promoted to self-evident “truths”. Not the very best way for us to go on…

You don’t believe me? Well, here is the list of philosophical assumption which must be held as “true” in order to say the abovmenetioned phrase:

  1. Belief in time: Time is something which is not sure if it exists. At least in the philosophy realm. Scientists like Einstein and Godel have already started questioning loudly its existence.
  2. Belief in causality: You must believe in causality if you are to use words like “bacause” in your talking. And yet again, philosophy (and some enlightened scientists) is not sure if causality exists.
  3. Belief in the existence of “species”: When you refer to “bananas” toy refer to a specific species. But the very existence of species is not agreed upon among philosophers of biology. Darwin himself was enthustatic about “solving the problem of species” with his new theory: if animals/plants constantly “change”, there was no need for defining different species! 🙂
  4. Belief in Free Will: How can you decide to go somewhere if not by deciding your self? This is clearly implied here. I do not have to spell it out for you that the problem of Free Will is the main problem of philosophy and surely it is not solved yet…
  5. Belief in consciousness: Last but not least, what does that “I” you say refer to? Do you think you are more than a souless machine? Do you think you “exist”. Do you think you are different from the human next to you because “you are you” and “he is he”? Guess what: this could be a very good theme for discussion in a philosophy forum.

All of the above have once been a matter of heated debate. Once upon a time one of the opinions “won” and becase the “mainstream” one. But that does not mean that this is the correct one. The matter was not “solved”. One opinion became more popular than the other and humans just went on. As simple as that.

Using words in everyday life is not something one can avoid. And surely we cannot think of all of the above every time we speak to each other. However being aware of these things makes one wiser…

Science, Beliefs, Antinomies…

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You ask for others to “prove” what they say, but yet the only thing which is certain in your science is that nothing can be proven (call me Gödel)…

You cannot accept the possibility of a First Cause for the cosmos, but you can accept the possibility of multiple paraller universes which cannot interact with each other…

You cannot accept the possibility of a theory which has the notion of “design” as integral part and you believe in the role of “luck” (call me statistics) in the laws of physics, but on the other hand you continually design new things and you continually search for laws which deterministically (not randomly) govern Nature…

You cannot accept the possibility of consciousness being something immaterial, but yet you accept the existence of immaterial notions like “fields”…

You try to beat death, but you cannot yet define what “life” is…

You cannot accept the possibility of a purpose, but yet everything you do have one…

You are full of antinomies…

And you are too blind to see it…