Archives for posts with tag: time

You cannot explore the limits of something without knowning what that something is.
You might not know how that thing works, or came to be, but you need to have at least some idea about what that thing is!

So, ‘What conscience is?’

Huh?!?

‘Cognitive function…’, ‘ability to tell right from wrong’, ‘self awareness’… you name it.
Rathern confusing, isn’t it?
Specially when you already had a clear idea about what the word used to mean… Or was that only an impression?!? An ilussion, actually?

Let me introduce you to my version of things.

Everything that surrounds us has a ‘discrete’ nature.

Both matter and energy are, ultimatelly, made of quanta.
Certain theoretical considerations suggest that time and space are multiple of Planck time and space units, respectivelly. Any lenght, in time and/or space, smaller than a Planck unit not having any sense. The argument being the facts that the speed of light is limited and that matter/energy itself (which fills the space and generates time) is of a discrete nature. As in ‘made of quanta’.

And this ‘discrete nature of things’ is visible at every level.

We have quanta, quarks and other elementary particles, atoms, molecules/crystals. And ‘objects’.
We have substances, membranes, cells, organisms, species. And individuals.

When our scientifically minded forefathers first tried to make some sense of what we had already learned about the world, they had come up with the notion of ‘states of matter aggregation’. Or ‘phases of matter’.
At first, there were three of them. Solid, Liquid and Gaseous.
Currently, we recognize five. Solid, Liquid, Gaseous, Plasma and Bose-Einstein Condensate. The first four are deemed to be ‘natural’ while the last is considered to have been ‘made by man’.

The main difference between them being the manner in which the components ‘stick’ to each other. The amount of force with which each of them interacts with its neighbors.
The same ‘level of internal interaction’ governs the way in which various ‘objects’ interact when they ‘meet’. Two clouds of gas interact differently than two bodies of water. Which interact differently than two rocks. Furthermore, a stream of gas interacts differently with a liquid than with a solid object. And so on….

My point being that the ‘phase of matter’ one object belongs to determines the manner in which that object interacts with its exterior.

‘OK, somewhat interesting but rather hard to follow… anyway, what has any of this to do with ‘conscience’?!?’

Given what I’ve already written, where would you put a living organism? In what ‘phase of matter’?
Is it solid? Liquid? Gaseous? Plasmatic?!? Or, given the fact that it contains all three ‘classic’ phases it’s closer to a Bose-Einstein condensate?

For lack of a better word, I consider ‘conscience’ to be a ‘state of matter aggregation’.

We’ve associated ‘being conscious’ with self awareness. With the human version of self-awareness… the one described by Humberto Maturana. ‘The learned ability to observe ourselves in the act of observing‘.
I suggest that we point our attention towards any other living organism. And notice that it acts as if it was aware of itself. It keeps its inside separate from the outside. It choses what to ingest. What of it to digest. And what to excrete. Sometimes even where to excrete. Then it passes the instructions according to which it had performed all these tasks towards the next generations.

Or would it be more suitable to consider ‘life’ itself as a ‘state of matter aggregation’? And consciousness as a property of life? As hardness is for solids and viscosity is for fluids/gases?

‘And what about ‘the discrete nature of things’? What has this to do with ‘conscience’?’

You see, I’ve just proposed ‘conscience’ as ‘state of matter’. That ‘phase’ where life takes place.
That place where individual organisms interact, among themselves and with their environment, attempting to survive. And to pass on the information contained in them.
We, humans, have taken ‘conscience’ to the next level. Our conscience is far more than the natural tendency to uphold the functionality of the individual organism. We observe ourselves in the act of observing. We set what is good, and bad, for us. We set goals.

Sometimes without being aware that our goals might hurt us.
The individual ‘us’.
And the collective us.
The collective us which makes us, individuals, possible.

Primum non nocere!

One-Time
Monthly
Yearly

Make a one-time donation

Make a monthly donation

Make a yearly donation

Choose an amount

$5.00
$15.00
$100.00
$5.00
$15.00
$100.00
$5.00
$15.00
$100.00

Or enter a custom amount

$

As much as I love writing, I do have to eat.
And to provide for my family.
Earning money takes time.
If you’d like me to write more, and on a more regular basis, hit the button.
Your contribution will be appreciated!

As much as I love writing, I do have to eat.
And to provide for my family.
Earning money takes time.
If you’d like me to write more, and on a more regular basis, hit the button.
Your contribution will be appreciated!

As much as I love writing, I do have to eat.
And to provide for my family.
Earning money takes time.
If you’d like me to write more, and on a more regular basis, hit the button.
Your contribution will be appreciated!

DonateDonate monthlyDonate yearly


Time is but the consequence of matter/energy interacting with itself.

The post continues after this message.

One-Time
Monthly
Yearly

Make a one-time donation

Make a monthly donation

Make a yearly donation

Choose an amount

$5.00
$15.00
$100.00
$5.00
$15.00
$100.00
$5.00
$15.00
$100.00

Or enter a custom amount

$

As much as I love writing, I do have to eat.
And to provide for my family.
Earning money takes time.
If you’d like me to write more, and on a more regular basis, hit the button.
Your contribution will be appreciated!

As much as I love writing, I do have to eat.
And to provide for my family.
Earning money takes time.
If you’d like me to write more, and on a more regular basis, hit the button.
Your contribution will be appreciated!

As much as I love writing, I do have to eat.
And to provide for my family.
Earning money takes time.
If you’d like me to write more, and on a more regular basis, hit the button.
Your contribution will be appreciated!

DonateDonate monthlyDonate yearly

There was no time to speak about before matter divorced energy.

Nobody was actually aware of time passing by until we started counting Sun’s revolutions.

Earth turning round the Sun is matter interacting with itself.

We, humans, are a consequence of evolution. Of matter interacting with itself.

History – the times be bothered to record, is a consequence of human interactions.

Environment is the consequence of the living things interacting with the rest of the planet.
The current state of our ‘backyard’, the Earth, is, increasingly, the consequence of our interaction with the environment.

Time might be passing its own.
We used to count it.
Nowadays, we’re the ones driving it.

Resources, Time, Evolution.

Information, Learning, Revelation.

Opportunities, Experience, Self-Improvement.

Things, Structure, Understanding.

Limits, Interactions, Outgrowth.

Smells like The Dow Theory?
Because that was my starting point….

But we should not forget Abraham Maslow.
If you think of it, Maslow’s stages are nothing but the three thrusts up which define a bull market.
For an individual to be able to master the ‘self actualization’ phase, they need to have mustered enough resources, have had enough relevant social experience and to have ‘properly digested’ the information accumulated during the process.


One-Time
Monthly
Yearly

Make a one-time donation

Make a monthly donation

Make a yearly donation

Choose an amount

$5.00
$15.00
$100.00
$5.00
$15.00
$100.00
$5.00
$15.00
$100.00

Or enter a custom amount

$

As much as I love writing, I do have to eat.
And to provide for my family.
Earning money takes time.
If you’d like me to write more, and on a more regular basis, hit the button.
Your contribution will be appreciated!

As much as I love writing, I do have to eat.
And to provide for my family.
Earning money takes time.
If you’d like me to write more, and on a more regular basis, hit the button.
Your contribution will be appreciated!

As much as I love writing, I do have to eat.
And to provide for my family.
Earning money takes time.
If you’d like me to write more, and on a more regular basis, hit the button.
Your contribution will be appreciated!

DonateDonate monthlyDonate yearly

Do you really think they’ll make it?
Does it really matter? What I think about it? You know what the alternatives are… Even they know it. Some of them, anyway… Those who agree with Darwin. Either… or…
I know, I know… After all, this is the umpteenth time we’ve had this conversation… If they make it, we’re here to welcome them. If they don’t, we’ve lost our time watching them…
They’ve wasted our time, actually. They’re the ones calling the shots… we’re here only to observe…
Yeah, except for they don’t see the whole picture! They don’t know about us, for starters. And they don’t know what we’re here for…

Nobody asked me, yet, ‘why do you still keep this clock on the wall? It’s arms never move, the pendulum is frozen…’

Those who really know me have learned that I hate ‘ticking’. And that I’m rather accurate at telling time without any instruments.
My son’s friends – the only ‘other’ people who come into our house, haven’t noticed. Or cared enough to ask…

Yet the story is interesting enough.

The ‘object’ was manufactured in the USSR. More than 50 years ago.
I’ve no idea whether my parents bought it or it was gifted to them. Point is that I remember it ticking, and striking every half hour, during my entire childhood. Until I took my fate into my own hands!
Into my left hand, actually.
I sneaked it into the clock and bent the three rods inside away from the hammers.
The clock continued to strike but the sound was muted. Still audible but way less annoying.

My parents said nothing. Maybe they didn’t like it either…
The ticking remained, though. But the difference from the previous situation was so huge that it didn’t bother me anymore.

After a few years I moved out so I ‘forgot’ about it.

A decade or so later, my father and I decided to build a house.
My mother had died, I was the only child… It was obvious for both of us that, sooner or later, we’ll have to ‘camp’ back together. He was already on the wrong side of 60…

When he moved in, the clock followed suit.
I hanged it on the wall. Attempted to make it work. Something had happened to it while in transit. Left it be, for a while.
At some point, my father asked me to take it to a repair shop.
Brought it back. The guy had not only fixed the mechanism, he had also bent back the ‘chiming’ rods.
Couldn’t sleep that night!
Told my father the racket must stop. He agreed. He hadn’t slept either.
After bending, again, those damn rods, we sat down to watch TV. The couch is right below the clock. After five minutes, we looked at each other. I stood up and stopped the pendulum.

‘But why don’t you just throw it away?’

It’s not that simple.
It reminds me of my childhood.
I don’t hate the object, only the sounds it makes.
I’d have to hang something else in it’s place. There’s a hole in the wall and a ‘shadow’ on the ‘white wash’.
And, above all, its stillness is an excellent reminder.

That even a broken watch is able to tell the exact time!

If it still has its arms.
If you happen to look at it at the right moment!
And only two times each day…

“….a combination of Gnostic Christianity, Buddhism, Zoroastrianism, and various other elements, with a basic doctrine of a conflict between light and dark…..”

And the Lord God said, “The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil”  Genesis 3:22

Light and Dark, Good and Evil… sets of two different things which exist by themselves but make no sense until somebody sees the difference between them.

A wall has two sides.
A room – four walls with a floor and a roof, determines an inside and an outside. Because the walls have two sides and because somebody built it.
A room is empty when nobody is inside it and ‘disappears’ when nobody remembers its existence. Even if its walls continue to stand …

Two points are distinct if there is some space between them.
Two points belong to the same line if the distance between them is full of other points.

Matter is discrete.
Even atoms, which have long been considered as impossible to be divided further, are constituted of smaller components. Electrons, protons, neutrons, … quarks… all the way ‘down’ to quanta …
All this discreteness is made possible by space.
Which simultaneously encompasses each of the discrete pieces of matter and separates them.

On the other hand, matter is discrete in yet another manner. In time.
Manny trees live longer than us and mountains last way longer than trees.
Yet nothing is forever. Nor have existed for always. Not our Sun nor even the small pieces which inhabit the subatomic world.
Each piece of everything comes into existence and decays into oblivion.
Each organism is born into this world and eventually dies – releasing its components for further use.
All this discrete becoming being made possible by time.
Which simultaneously encompasses and separates each event.

Similarly to the aforementioned room, neither matter, space or time makes any sense on its own. Not even together.
They might exist but they have no significance until noticed.

By us, by God…

Nature.

‘Resources’ to structures to meaning.

Man.

Opportunities to structures to comprehension.

Society.

Pre-existing conditions to structures to culture (survival)

“Although the Big Bang singularity arises directly and unavoidably from the mathematics of general relativity, some scientists see it as problematic because the math can explain only what happened immediately after—not at or before—the singularity.”

Ever since Man became aware of the world around him he tried to find explanations for each and every individual occurrence that  grabbed his attention.
Eventually he became aware of the various links that exist between ‘things’ so he started to look for a ‘theory of everything’.
Right now Man seems stuck in the middle of the road.
I’ll assume the presumptuousness of my proposal but what about getting out of this sink hole by giving up mathematics as the main tool of investigation into the matter?
After all mathematics is nothing but just another language. A special kind of language, OK – a lot more precise than all the others, but still a language – nothing but another medium for rational thinking. And just as it happens in any medium/language, nothing can be expressed in that medium before it has been ‘grappled’ with the mind.
Of course that I don’t propose to give up mathematics altogether, that would be both ludicrous and absolutely inefficient.
The problem with our over-dependency on mathematics is that we no longer think first in words/concepts and then translate those into mathematical equations for verification but proceed the other-way around. We first ‘do our math’ and only then try to describe with words whatever imaginary place we have arrived at by using calculus. Doesn’t make much sense, does it? Specially if one looks at it from this angle…
So what do we know about this so called Big Bang?
– Planck says that things cannot be divided further than 1 quantum.
– Heisenberg says that we cannot calculate anything with absolute precision.
– Einstein says that everything is tied together – ‘relative’ to each other.
– Stephen Hawking demonstrated – using calculus, of course – practically the same thing as Einstein when he convinced us that black holes are not exactly one way highways to nowhere. The implication of what Hawking says being that the ‘known’ Universe is somehow encapsulated towards the rear and has only one ‘open side’, the one that faces towards the ‘future’ – whatever that means.
And we still look desperately for a precise description of what happened during and even before the ground/moment 0… Really?!?
How about adopting a more practical attitude and accepting that each level of organization implies a certain amount of “in-determination”, the equivalent of those demonstrated by Heisenberg for the sub-atomic ‘world’ and by Schrodinger for ‘cats’ in general?
Maybe this way it would be easier for us to accept not only that we’ll never be able to find out what existed before the ‘Big Bang’ (if anything even imaginable in our terms) but also that it would be absolutely useless – my hunch being that we cannot ‘go back’ completely through a ‘layer’ of in-determination. A plastic analogy would be that we can see through a soap bubble but we cannot actually cross it and a more scientific one that Hawking taught us how to calculate what happens inside a black hole but never advised us to go there and check for ourselves…

And now, that we have reached this point, here is my scenario for what happened during … call it what you like.

At first there was nothing. No space, no time, no matter/energy of any kind.
‘Nothing’ in the sense that everything that existed – and that still exists – was so ‘indiscriminate’ as to be completely uniform. The pure bred scientists would use ‘congruous to itself’ to describe this state. Amorphous would be a very weak term for what I have in mind.
White light is a very pointy thing while pitch black is a lot more than its opposite. Light creates shadows, black creates opportunities. There can be ‘nothing’ between a light source and the observer while absolutely everything can hide in the dark.
That was that existed ‘before’. An immense ‘black nothing’.
Everything started/changed when the first ‘symmetry’ crashed in shatters – and who really cares about the ‘why’ of the matter since there was, by definition, no possible cause for anything, for nothing existed yet? I don’t know which symmetry and, again, I don’t really care. For me it is enough that from then on the continuous nothing became divided into ‘quanta’ that started to simultaneously aggregate furiously among themselves and disperse wildly.
The aggregation process gave birth to what we now call ‘things’ (mater, energy) while the ‘dispersion’ gave birth to both space and time.

Coming back to where we started from – ‘math can explain only what happened…’ – I must remind you that math cannot explain anything. Only people can do that, including through the use of ‘math’.