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RECENT POSTS IN THIS TOPIC

George Simpson: on 2/26/17 at 14:11pm UTC, wrote Hi Edwin, "You also seem to believe matter is built on information."...

Edwin Klingman: on 2/26/17 at 2:14am UTC, wrote Dear George Simpson, I very much enjoyed your essay formulating the...

George Ellis: on 2/19/17 at 20:21pm UTC, wrote Dear George I think you are touching on some important ideas here that are...

George Simpson: on 2/19/17 at 16:09pm UTC, wrote Hi Matthew, I am arguing that "the non-physical (mind) emerging from the...

Matthew rapaport: on 2/19/17 at 1:23am UTC, wrote Hello Dr Simpson, thank you for a thoughtful essay. I'm wondering what in...

George Simpson: on 2/16/17 at 19:23pm UTC, wrote Comments have slowed down since I first posted this; I thought I might...

George Simpson: on 2/14/17 at 8:59am UTC, wrote Francis, thank you for your kind encouragement. ...george...

George Simpson: on 2/14/17 at 8:58am UTC, wrote Hi Eckard, thanks for these comments, which I have reflected upon for a few...


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FQXi FORUM
February 28, 2017

CATEGORY: Wandering Towards a Goal Essay Contest (2016-2017) [back]
TOPIC: Reality Re-Envisaged by George Arthur Simpson [refresh]
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This essay's rating: Community = 6.0; Public = 6.2


Author George Simpson wrote on Feb. 10, 2017 @ 15:35 GMT
Essay Abstract

To explain how aims and intentions arose from mindless mathematical laws, one needs a framework that acknowledges the reality of immaterial entities, which conventionally have been excluded from scientific consideration. We develop this by re-envisaging reality as a system in which information flows back and forth between the physical world and the Ideas Field, driven by the activity of minds. On that basis, we discuss how the emergence of the Ideas Field, with aims and intentions a key aspect of it, was fostered by technological development.

Author Bio

Dr George Simpson (physics, Univ New Hampshire 1977) began his career as an NAS/NRC Research Fellow with Goddard Space Centre. He contributed to the development of the NASA / ESA / Compton Gamma-Ray Observatory until 1990, then moved from academia into business. Currently he has a Data Scientist role with Transport for London, authoring intelligent systems for business analysis. Previously, he worked as an innovation consultant and application designer/developer.

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Jack Hamilton James wrote on Feb. 10, 2017 @ 22:31 GMT
Dear George,

Interesting to see a dualist (or mulitplicitist) of a physics background. Is the idea field a separate reality? As Descartes said 'a ghost in the machine?' Or is it all one reality with distinct fields?

Best,

Jack

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Author George Simpson replied on Feb. 11, 2017 @ 18:41 GMT
Hi Jack, thanks for your question. It is all ONE reality, the fields are interconnected. We have struggled with that in the past (mind-body) because, I claim, we have had an inadequate model of reality - basically we have assumed that everything is ultimately material. But now we are learning that everything is ultimately information, and that is another way of looking at my essay - as providing a starting point for thinking about the structure of an information-based universe.

Hope that helps, best regards, ...george...




Branko L Zivlak wrote on Feb. 10, 2017 @ 22:54 GMT
Dear Mr. George Arthur Simpson

I prefer essays with mathematical background. But your essay is entirely on a given topic. It is well presented and has high-quality graphics. It deserves high rate.

If you are interesting to ‘see’ things differently than they have previously“, please read my Theory.

Regards,

Branko

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Author George Simpson replied on Feb. 11, 2017 @ 18:45 GMT
Thanks for the encouragement Branko, I will have a look at your essay.

best regards, ...george...




William Walker wrote on Feb. 11, 2017 @ 07:03 GMT
Ideas Field? I would hope you could come up with something a little more creative... like the Infinite Consciousness Force...

this would be the force that shattered into a gazillion pieces and allowed for micro consciousness to pull from the ICF (multiverse)... now time needed to be added to the equation to make a space in the light to slow down information so it could evolve back into Oneness gaining knowledge along the way to make consciousness feel real. I know that was a long sentence... sorry.

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William Walker replied on Feb. 11, 2017 @ 13:33 GMT
I have to say I believe your ideas are very good... I was just giving you a friendly jab about creativity... ;)

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Author George Simpson replied on Feb. 11, 2017 @ 18:44 GMT
Thanks for the encouragement William. Finding a good name for things is hard. But if I used your suggestion, I might go over the page limit.. best regards, ...george...




Satyavarapu Naga Parameswara Gupta wrote on Feb. 11, 2017 @ 09:23 GMT
Dear Dr George A Simpson,

Thank you for the very nice essay…. You correctly pointed out that…. “The view that non-measurables such as aims, intentions, and the state of one’s soul, were best left to the church”. You said “reality itself has become synonymous with the physical world” For the discussion sake …I want to start debate on two points…

1. In part 1 you discussed about the physical world, the world of ideas and concepts, and minds connecting the two. What is the difference between the ideas and concepts and minds? My opinion mind itself is ideas and concepts...

2. Our mind forms a picture about an object, say about a pen for example, so the question comes what is reality actually? Is it that picture formed in our mind of that pen? Is that picture formed by the eye, or the picture formed by the hand which touches the pen? This question about reality is really confusing… Probably you have to define reality first….

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Author George Simpson replied on Feb. 11, 2017 @ 18:53 GMT
Hi Satyavarapu, thanks for the interesting questions.

re 1., in my model, minds feed on, create, manipulate, and act on ideas and concepts. Ideas and concepts are passive, minds act on the Ideas Field and act on the physical world.

re 2., Reality is not one or the other of these, but all of them - from the physical reality of the pen itself, to the various representations of the pen in our minds, to the idea of a pen which we share with others, an entity in the Ideas Field.

I hope this is helpful, best regards, ...george...




John C Hodge wrote on Feb. 12, 2017 @ 01:22 GMT
Are you following Liebniz?

He defined a "spirit" (my word). A college student calls home and says "send money". Later a check arrives. This is a huge transfer of energy (real) in exchange for a small expendure. This is a spirit force at work. Not real but materail moves.

Is this along your lines of "idea"?

Hodge

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Author George Simpson replied on Feb. 12, 2017 @ 13:09 GMT
Hi John, thanks for this. I have not studied Leibniz, but am looking into him now. I will start with Early Modern Translations. Do you have a source you would recommend? Hope to post a sensible response after a little while.

Best regards, ...george...



Author George Simpson replied on Feb. 12, 2017 @ 13:35 GMT
Hi Hodge,

I have searched all the Early Modern Texts on Leibniz for a reference to "student" and come up empty. So I will reply tentatively based on what you have said, pending the proper reference.

The interaction you describe, in which the exchange of an idea results in movement in the physical world, is similar to my example of the stop sign. Both appear as miracles, unless one has a frame that admits that reality has an immaterial aspect as well as a material one.

I hope that is useful,

Best regards

...george...



John C Hodge replied on Feb. 13, 2017 @ 07:19 GMT
Hi George

If I recall correctly Liebniz called the forces in the example Ideal". He also called space (meaning a coordinate system) and time in addition to the family above. They were relation forces - a precursor to relativity.

Hodge

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Steve Dufourny wrote on Feb. 12, 2017 @ 12:29 GMT
Hello Mr Simpson,

Congratulations for your relevant general papper.I liked how you analyse this mind body problems and how we can rank these intentions and informations.It is always about this how,why,where,when ...I believe personally in my model of spherisation with 3D quant and coms sphères Inside an universal 3D sphere that the soul and gravitation must be correlated.If we encircle the...

view entire post


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Author George Simpson replied on Feb. 12, 2017 @ 13:13 GMT
Hi Steve, Thanks for your encouragement. It is indeed a big puzzle, reality, and getting bigger all the time. The more we learn, the more the unknown grows before our eyes.

Best regards, ...george...



Steve Dufourny replied on Feb. 13, 2017 @ 08:35 GMT
You are welcome, with pleasure.Indeed,more we learn more we see that we are still so far.

Best Regards

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sridattadev kancharla wrote on Feb. 12, 2017 @ 14:09 GMT
Dear George,

I really enjoyed your beautiful essay and concur with your conceptualization of ideas field, mind and material reality. I hope you will enjoy the essay There are no goals as such in which I put forth a similar concept, just that I am using the term singularity of consciousness or soul or unified field in lieu of your "ideas field". Yes this field is beyond causal space-time,...

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attachments: SOULFUL.jpg, TBMI.jpg

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sridattadev kancharla replied on Feb. 12, 2017 @ 14:11 GMT
Here is the correct link to the essay There are no goals as such it's all play.

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Author George Simpson replied on Feb. 12, 2017 @ 14:46 GMT
Hello Sridattadev, thanks for your kind words, most encouraging. Like you, I hope that barriers between people, which only really exist in our minds, will become seen as unhelpful illusions.




Jose P. Koshy wrote on Feb. 12, 2017 @ 15:38 GMT
George Simpson,

It seems that your essay suggests 'idea field' to be different from matter. The biggest surprise is that a structure made up of atoms can create an 'idea field'. What I think is that the idea field remains inbuilt in matter, to bloom at the right time.

You have pointed out correctly the different eras in the history of Earth. I would like to add that this is the golden era, the zenith; and after that there will be a gradual decline, leading back to the 'machine era'; a beautiful symmetry, mathematically.

Jose p Koshy

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Author George Simpson replied on Feb. 12, 2017 @ 15:51 GMT
Hi Jost, thanks for these thoughts. I do indeed say that the Ideas Field - and also minds - are distinct aspects of reality, built on the same platform as matter - which is information.

You have a fascinating thought, that the ideas field is "inbuilt to matter". I don't think you mean that everything is conscious to some degree, but rather that the possibility is latent in the situation. Is that correct?



Joe Fisher replied on Feb. 12, 2017 @ 17:20 GMT
Dear Dr. Simpson,,

Please excuse me for I do not wish to be too critical of your fine essay and I do hope that it fairs well in the competition.

Only nature could produce a reality so simple, a single cell amoeba could deal with it.

One real visible Universe must have only one reality. Simple natural reality has nothing to do with any abstract complex musings about any...

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Jose P. Koshy replied on Feb. 13, 2017 @ 10:54 GMT
George Simpson,

Yes, I meant the possibility is latent, and consciousness emerges only when matter acquires the required structure.

Jose P koshy

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Eckard Blumschein wrote on Feb. 12, 2017 @ 18:48 GMT
Dear George Simpson,

You are a data scientist while I was a teacher of EE who dealt with auditory function from IHCs up to cochlear nucleus. Your answer to the topical question is more enthusiastic than mine. While I too am aware of fqxi's intention to prefer refurbished idealistic ideas of an information based nature, I am claiming to have revealed unseen flaws behind discrepancies...

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Author George Simpson replied on Feb. 14, 2017 @ 08:58 GMT
Hi Eckard, thanks for these comments, which I have reflected upon for a few days.

"Your ideas field looks therefore to me as (un)concrete as are all other known to me steps toward the envisaged theory"

I find it fascinating how we are able to be blind to that which is right in front of us. Where would you say your statement exists? It does exist, I'm sure you will agree. It is on your screen and mine, and in your thoughts and mine. Well, I say it exists in the Ideas Field, to give it a name. There is a symmetry between your mind and mine, and others reading this around the notions we are discussing. And that symmetry can have a physical effect, through the agency of minds.

I find this blindness to mental objects understandable, because the current paradigm does not admit of immaterial entities. However I find it harder to understand the position of philosophers of mind who deny the existence of mind. What is your view?

best regards, ...george...




Francis Duane Moore wrote on Feb. 14, 2017 @ 00:26 GMT
Dear George; The mind-body problem began with what a spherical object is.The sphere with no motion was presented as planes x,y,z, which could be given 2 coordinate positions for each x ,each y, each z. When given motion as in increasing momentum or mass, the Riemann sphere concept fails. Each plane of x, y, or z can change position with each other giving nine planes of influence of some relativistic approximation. The reality of motion is a non linear system of turbulent flow in a continuum of motion where particles as a concept change mass with a topological change in geometry. I hope this connects to your Ideas Field to your specific coordinates of a physical object The essay is a beautiful treatise and has given me further ideas in my work. Reversal of cellular automata in 9 planes of influence may be a way forward explaining reality of relativistic motion.Thanks Francis Duane Moore

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Author George Simpson replied on Feb. 14, 2017 @ 08:59 GMT
Francis, thank you for your kind encouragement. ...george...




Author George Simpson wrote on Feb. 16, 2017 @ 19:23 GMT
Comments have slowed down since I first posted this; I thought I might reignite interest by compiling the most favourable remarks from the conversation so far.

Branko Zivlak: "your essay is entirely on a given topic. It is well presented and has high-quality graphics. It deserves high rate."

William Walker: "I have to say I believe your ideas are very good..."

Satyavarapu Gupta: "Thank you for the very nice essay…. You correctly pointed out that…"

Steve Dufourny: "Congratulations for your paper, you are going to be well ranked and win a prize,it is general ande it is the most important also."

sridattadev kancharla: "I really enjoyed your beautiful essay and concur with your conceptualization of ideas field, mind and material reality."

Francis Moore: "The essay is a beautiful treatise and has given me further ideas in my work."




Matthew rapaport wrote on Feb. 19, 2017 @ 01:23 GMT
Hello Dr Simpson, thank you for a thoughtful essay. I'm wondering what in your mind grounds the "ideas field" metaphysically? Physicists do not know what metaphysically grounds the physical universe but they do have the big bang which can at least be considered a brute force beginning of the universe we inhabit. Perhaps there was something "before", perhaps nothing but a random fluctuation in some eternal (or at least indefinite) quantum vacuum. But what is key here is that everything that follows that bang is physical. It's quantum underpinning is physical and all its fields are physical: they can be measured with physical instruments. But the "ideas field" cannot be measured by physical instruments. How does the non-physical (mind) emerge from the physical? What about the physical gives it the power to produce the non-physical? If you have God then no problem. God could be the source of both sides. But you don't raise that possibility, so what else could it be?

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Author George Simpson replied on Feb. 19, 2017 @ 16:09 GMT
Hi Matthew,

I am arguing that "the non-physical (mind) emerging from the physical" appears to be miraculous only if you start from premises that exclude it happening. So change the premises, I say.

There are things in nature that are real, yet are immaterial - in particular information. Information governs events, and therefore is real. The diagrams in section 3.1 express this. In section 2.3, I argue that the physics of this is grounded in information symmetries. This is not "metaphysical", it is actually measurable in principle. It is incorrect to say that the Ideas Field is not measurable. Immaterial yes, but immeasurable no - it just will take a different kind of detector. I touch on this in the Conclusions, point 3.



Member George F. R. Ellis replied on Feb. 19, 2017 @ 20:21 GMT
Dear George

I think you are touching on some important ideas here that are not often recognised because they are unpopular. But I think most of what you say is correct, and is congruent with my own ideas and my own essay.

Thoughts are indeed causally effective, as for example the existence of digital computers decisively demonstrates. Calling this causal power a "mind field" seems quite acceptable, as we must recognize as being real anything that can be shown to alter the physical world around.

Just one thing: you say "The Ideas Field consists of symmetries among information patterns (minds)". I would prefer to talk about multiple realisations of the same abstract patterns. The concept of multiple realisations can be claimed to be key to recognising the deep nature of causation in complex systems, as is discussed in my book on Top Down Causation.



Best regards,

George

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Edwin Eugene Klingman wrote on Feb. 26, 2017 @ 02:14 GMT
Dear George Simpson,

I very much enjoyed your essay formulating the 'Ideas' field.

You say that, in your model, "minds feed on, create, manipulate, and act on ideas and concepts. Ideas and concepts are passive, minds act on the Ideas field and act on the physical world." You also seem to believe matter is built on information. I do not believe "information" exists in any material sense, but information is registered when energy/momentum causes a structural change in a material system. Even then information can only be interpreted or given meaning via a given context or through code-books. Unless and until interpreted, it's only energy flowing through space and rearranging material structure.

You envisage reality as a three-part system, consisting of the physical world, the world of ideas and concepts, and minds connecting the two. It's unclear how the brain fits into this. Whereas you define mind as an information pattern, I believe the information pattern is found in the neural network. I see the mind as possessor of consciousness, which I propose exists in a universal field that physically interacts with matter in motion. You seem to be saying something similar when you say the individual mind takes its shape from "idea gestures" which seem to originate in the brain. You posit the mind gives physical form to concepts, whereas I propose the form is derived from physical flows in the brain, sensed by the consciousness field.

Unless I've missed it you do not specify 'how' the Ideas field interacts with matter. Do you envisage the manner in which such occurs?

Best regards, and congratulations on tackling the 'hard' problems.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

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Author George Simpson wrote on Feb. 26, 2017 @ 14:11 GMT
Hi Edwin,

"You also seem to believe matter is built on information." Quantum mechan"ics, as I understand it, establishes information as a foundational component of reality. It is information that determines the outcome in the twin-slit experiment. However, this is not central to my argument.

"Unless and until interpreted, (information is) only energy flowing through space and rearranging material structure" Agree. Therefore minds are needed.

"It's unclear how the brain fits into this. Whereas you define mind as an information pattern, I believe the information pattern is found in the neural network." I am a bit nonplussed here - I thought it would be obvious to readers that the information pattern exists in the brain, constructed on the infrastructure offered by neurons. I could have been more explicit about this.

"I see the mind as possessor of consciousness, which I propose exists in a universal field that physically interacts with matter in motion." I'm sorry here I think you are going off the deep end, hypothesising something enormously hard to verify and understand. Why would we think that matter in motion would always interact with mind? And motion is relative to some frame - there is always a frame in which the motion is zero.

We can verify that there are information patterns in brains, and we can verify that actions in the physical world take place as a result of the changing configurations of these patterns - i.e., what they believe.

"the individual mind takes its shape from "idea gestures" which seem to originate in the brain" Idea gestures are simply the analogue of physical gestures, which we already know rely on a causal link between activation patterns in the brain and motion of the body.

you do not specify 'how' the Ideas field interacts with matter You are right, I did not specify this explicitly, and should have. My "idea gestures" in the mind, which are patterns of activation, can remain internal to the mind, not affecting the areas associated with motor control, or they can interact with these, resulting in motion of the body.

congratulations on tackling the 'hard' problems. THANK YOU!!!




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