Culture

Do personal beliefs change behavior?

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Do our beliefs about free will change our behavior? It seems they do. Here researchers primed some subjects to believe that our behavior is wholly determined by environment and genes, and that free will is a myth. (This is a theme of Dawkins who says that punishing a criminal is like kicking your car when it breaks down) Those subjects acted less ethically than those not primed. Beliefs influence behavior.

What would a similar experiment show if the belief challenged was that there is Design behind the universe and life? Do people act the same after reading and believing “The God Delusion”?

None of this addresses the actual truth of the belief, just whether believing it changes behavior. Fascinating!

38 Replies to “Do personal beliefs change behavior?

  1. 1
    larrynormanfan says:

    This seems like a ridiculous study to me, since there is no baseline measure of how the students performed before reading the passages. So it’s meaningless. All they did was ask a few undergraduates (n=30) to read a crude version of a complex philosophical debate. Those stupid enough to be persuaded by it cheated more than others. Hmm. This proves what, exactly?

  2. 2
    russ says:

    (This is a theme of Dawkins who says that punishing a criminal is like kicking your car when it breaks down)

    I am going over to Dawkins’ house and walking out with his TV and his stereo.

  3. 3
    StephenB says:

    Of course your beliefs about free will will affect your behavior. If you don’t believe that it is possible to contol your behavior, then you will not exert yourself to make it happen. If you don’t believe that you can resist temptation, then obviously you will give in to it without a fight. Indeed, without a belief in free will, both moral exertion and temptation are meaningless concepts.

  4. 4
    larrynormanfan says:

    I wonder if the same results would have occurred if the subjects had been given a Christian treatise against free will (such as Martin Luther’s The Bondage of the Will).

  5. 5
    Mapou says:

    larrynormanfan wrote: I wonder if the same results would have occurred if the subjects had been given a Christian treatise against free will (such as Martin Luther’s The Bondage of the Will).

    I take this as a not so subtle attack against Christianity. You are apparently aiming to discredit the Christian faith by pointing out its inconsistencies and conflicts. But so what if Christianity is inconsistent and filled with conflicts? Do you have something else in mind for Christians to fall back on? Is science (the atheistic kind) somehow free from inconsistencies and conflicts?

    Christians worship Jesus Christ and his Father. That’s it. We honor and admire but we don’t worship human beings (Martin Luther included) regardless of their apparent greatness. At any rate, debates and arguments on free will are notoriously fuzzy. It is highly likely that you are misinterpreting Luther’s original intent.

  6. 6
    larrynormanfan says:

    Mapou, I’m a Christian, so no, it’s not an attack against Christianity. It’s an attack against an idiotic study that proves nothing and makes unwarranted assumptions. And as it happens, I agree with Luther on the whole. I read The Bondage of the Will over twenty years ago and have never forgotten it.

  7. 7
    idnet.com.au says:

    If we keep faith based instruction out of our education system, there will be consequences, whether the faith is true or false. It seems from this experiment that we will not give birth to a better society.

    When a high profile pastor falls it is big news. When a rock star does the same thing it is considered normal.

    Beliefs help shape our values. Values shape our behavior and behavior has consequences.

    Intelligent Design, whether true or false will be one belief providing a foundation for a better society than Dawkin’s “pitiless indifference”.

  8. 8
    Mapou says:

    larrynormanfan wrote: Mapou, I’m a Christian, so no, it’s not an attack against Christianity.

    My apologies.

  9. 9
    Gerry Rzeppa says:

    “Christians worship Jesus Christ and his Father. That’s it.” – Mapou

    “…And I believe in the Holy Ghost, the Lord and Giver of Life; who proceeds from the Father and the Son; who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified; who spoke by the prophets.” – Nicene Creed

  10. 10
    Mapou says:

    Gerry, thanks for that quote. Even though I’m Christian, I don’t have much knowledge or understanding about the nature and function of the Holy Spirit. I just assume it to be a part of the Godhead. There is no doubt in my mind, however, that the Father and the Son are like the right and left hemispheres of the God’s brain respectively. I find it easier to identify with this metaphor.

  11. 11
    Gerry Rzeppa says:

    Mapou –

    The concept of the Trinity – one God in three distinct Persons – is held by many to be a rather counter-intuitive concept, difficult to illustrate. Personally, I think the illustrations are both easy to understand and almost impossible to miss in the universe as it is normally perceived. The Big Three are:

    Time, a single conceptual entity, but normally perceived as past, present, and future;

    Space, a single conceptual entity, but normally perceived as length, width, and depth; and

    Matter, a single conceptual entity, but normally perceived as solid, liquid, or gas.

    What kind of God would create such a universe, and fill it with creatures designed to perceive it this way?

    “In the beginning [time], God [plural noun] created [singular verb] the heavens [space] and the earth [matter].”

  12. 12
    larrynormanfan says:

    Gerry, I think you’re quoting from the second version of the Nicene creed. The first version was shorter, and did not talk about the Holy Spirit so intensively. In fact, the crucial line (“who proceeds from the Father and the Son”) was quite controversial.

  13. 13
    StephenB says:

    —–larrymoralfan writes, “Gerry, I think you’re quoting from the second version of the Nicene creed. The first version was shorter, and did not talk about the Holy Spirit so intensively. In fact, the crucial line (”who proceeds from the Father and the Son”) was quite controversial.”

    Why is it that oxymoronic Christian Darwinists always want a quiet God and a loud Darwin? Why is it that they question every mainsteam Christian notion such as free will, Trinitarian Theology, and “design” in nature, but they will fight to the death for the proposition that nature can create itself? Why is it that the play the Christian card each time that their Darwinist ideology is exposed? Why is it that Darwinism seems to be the theme of their life and their Christianity seems to be a footnote?

  14. 14
    larrynormanfan says:

    StephenB, it’s “larrynormanfan.” To explain my name, here’s a link to a classic song of Larry Norman.

    I don’t want a quiet God, and I don’t know what you’re talking about. I’m talking about basic Trinitarian and reformed theology. I didn’t say it was controversial to dismiss it. The reason the later Nicene creed was controversial was because the Trinity is a scandal and some people couldn’t take the divinity of the Holy Spirit seriously.

  15. 15
    larrynormanfan says:

    Correction: I didn’t say it was controversial in order to dismiss it.

    In fact, I think the first version of the Nicene Creed was probably silent because the heresy of denying the Holy Spirit’s divinity hadn’t get become an issue. The second version arose in response to the emerging heresy.

    Consider the definition of ID on this blog. A definition is needed because people misunderstand and/or misconstrue the work. Yet the definition probably could be revised in response to changing misunderstandings. That doesn’t mean that ID itself changes. It remains the same no matter what the definition on the sidebar says.

  16. 16
    StephenB says:

    —–larrynormanfan: “I don’t want a quiet God, and I don’t know what you’re talking about. I’m talking about basic Trinitarian and reformed theology. I didn’t say it was controversial to dismiss it. The reason the later Nicene creed was controversial was because the Trinity is a scandal and some people couldn’t take the divinity of the Holy Spirit seriously.”

    Fair enough. I do seem to have misread your name (applying “moran” to “norman.”

  17. 17
    StephenB says:

    —-idnet.com.au: “Intelligent Design, whether true or false will be one belief providing a foundation for a better society than Dawkin’s “pitiless indifference”.

    I agree. To say that the universe was “designed” is to imply that it AND WE were designed for “something,” which is another way of saying that it and we were created for a purpose. That means that we live in a moral universe with natural standards of right and wrong.

    That, after all is the definition of “good.” A thing or person is good if it performs the way it was designed and intended to perform. If a pencil sharpener tries to perform as a can opener, it is a bad pencil sharpener. If it continues to act against its purpose, it will not only fail in its mission, it will end up destroying itself. So, if a person tries to act like an animal when he was made to act like a human, he is a bad person because he is perverting his nature—he is going against his “design.”

    If the universe was designed for a purpose, there is no way to escape the natural moral law. One way to eliminate the natural moral law from consciousness is to reduce design to the status of “illusion.” That is what materialism does. Materialism is not an intellectual position; it is a moral position. It seeks to eliminate the natural moral law by positing an amoral materialistic universe. That’s what ideologues do. They conform truth to desire even though reason dictates that we should conform desire to truth.

  18. 18
    StephenB says:

    larrynormanfan: I don’t think that I apologized sufficiently for getting your name wrong and attributing to you someone else’s views. I do so now.

  19. 19
    toc says:

    This type of determinism is absurd. Make absolutely no decisions in life and observe the outcome. No one could observe anything would that this be the case.

  20. 20
    Frost122585 says:

    Time flows forward- thank god, and therefore we can learn from histroy if we are able to see why doing such is valuable. This ability to craft the future to a certian degree in our favor is once layer of free will- and yes how we go about implimenting it matters a great deal- all of which would be impossible or at least trivialized if we did not share the belief that tomorrow can be better if we are willing to try.

    That is all that we are- beings that try.

  21. 21
    Mapou says:

    Gerry, regarding your use of time, space and matter to represent the Trinity, I’m afraid that I cannot go along with it. In my cosmology, there is neither time nor space, only matter.

    A time dimension would make motion impossible. This is the reason that Sir Karl Popper (of falsifiability fame) wrote in “Conjectures” that spacetime is “Einstein’s block universe in which nothing happens”. I believe that change exists and time is abstractly derived from change. There is only the changing present. Besides, even if a time dimension were allowed, it would mean a deterministic universe, something that is inacceptable to observations in quantum mechanics. In fact, I have reasons to believe that the probabilistic nature of quantum interactions is precisely due to the non-existence of time. It cannot be any other way. This is a good thing within the context of free will, consciouness and that sort of thing.

    I don’t believe in space (distance) because it leads to an infinite regress. This means that I believe that, in the future, we will have technologies that will allow us to “teleport” instantly from anywhere to anywhere. Here I should mention that the Bible contains several instances of teleportation.

    This leaves us only matter, which I believe is made of nothing. Why? Because this is the only ontology of substance that does not lead to an infinite regress. Matter ex nihilo has very interesting consequences, not the least of which is that we live in a yin-yang reality.

    In conclusion, all I’m going to say about the Trinity is that I don’t have enough data to either understand it or even to decide whether or not it is a valid concept. I have my doubts though, since I am a duality freak to the core. Sorry. I tend to see the Holy Spirit more like the Force concept of the Star Wars movie series. Here, I’m mostly speculating.

    Having said that, I have the utmost respect for any Christian who holds the Trinity close to their heart.

  22. 22
    Frost122585 says:

    id.net says,

    “If we keep faith based instruction out of our education system, there will be consequences, whether the faith is true or false. It seems from this experiment that we will not give birth to a better society.”

    *** This is little long- forgive me- but is important to me that I share it ***

    Well, IMOP, the way in which issues like this should be viewed intellectually should be in this light-

    There are mainly two kinds of laws, those which are permissive and those which are restrictive. Permissive laws protect our rights to freedom and liberty and restrictive laws limit them. If people want to have faith based schooling then the question should be what are its consequences. Everywhere you look, education that has a faith based component is far more preferred and expensive in most cases then the public secular versions- The reason for this is that as the article describes- faith is beneficial to ones life and personal choices and ultimately improves people’s contributions to humanity- if this is what people want to be able to do and I think that it has proven to be more helpful than not- then a restriction on such is in my view absurd. The idea that a minority which is merely offended- or uncomfortable with the practices of the majority, which free individual citizens know is beneficial to their lives- can be made illegal- is dangerous. Ideas are dangerous and the most dangerous ones are those which appeal to short sighted interests and feelings especially those which restrict people’s freedom giving more power to an establishment then the individual lives and choices of people seeking their own personal self interests.

    The question then becomes why hasn’t the majority used the political realm to change this? The reason is mainly two fold- one the majority in support for faith based education overall is relatively slender roughly 50 to 65% and in a few areas is nonexistent- the second reason is that the politically powerful groups- thanks to a very repressive and strict interpretation of the constitution’s relationship with faith (usually wrongly conflated with “church” and separation thereof from state) are able to use the education establishment to manipulate the dialogue in favor of the secular status quo. The highly politically powerful and growing teacher’s union fears and opposes faith based programs with all of their might for two reasons- one it promotes freedom of thought and moral inclusiveness particularly of parents, which increase their risk of scrutiny — and two it aligns itself politically with free market political-economic philosophy- which endangers their tenure and strangle hold of educational power. This is why I believe mainly the 18 to 24 year old crowed is always very liberal and left wing- after 20 years of indoctrination any one would be– even though later in life they always become more conservative when exposed to reality- information and the facts— thus so much for the integrity of the decalred virtues of formal public education.

    The media also is interested in a less free and especially religiously free society because the media (big TV news stations and papers) is mainly owned by interests that are not inherently American rooted. In other words the information and stories that are promoted are slanted towards a left wing ideology and restriction of freedom because a social change to the right would possible endanger the interests of those rich elites that have much of their money levied against the American dollar and interests and in other countries. As long as people are taught to think for the powerful the powerful shall remain so— But the moment that people are free to think for themselves a balance of power begins to ensue.

    We live in a strange world of nation states that paradoxically exist to serve a global economy- a problematical situation because an economy is not a nation and therefore the two divisions are inherently in conflict- and more importantly the deeply held beliefs of man (particularly the religious and faith based ones) are being sacrificed for the greater good of the system and the powerful elitists who are obscenely benefiting from it.

    Sad but true.

    The belief in intelligent design is not where the secular people want our minds to be. ID is not a belief system that puts their social construct first and therefore is their declared enemy. Just read the vulgar things people say about it- particularly on posts at You-Tube and the like, not to mention the mainstream media’s inaccuate portrayal of ID which is almost always confalted with young earth creationism. Hence, the so called and self declared tolerant ideologues of the left are anything but. Yet it should be understood that the world in which “most people want to live” is inherently one which is guided by morals and spiritual beliefs particularly in hope and purpose. ID’s enemies have already waged a very successful war against it by uniting a powerful political coalition of interests. It is time that we should do the same.

  23. 23
    Frost122585 says:

    Mapou says,

    “A time dimension would make motion impossible. This is the reason that Sir Karl Popper (of falsifiability fame) wrote in “Conjectures” that space-time is “Einstein’s block universe in which nothing happens”. I believe that change exists and time is abstractly derived from change. There is only the changing present. Besides, even if a time dimension were allowed, it would mean a deterministic universe, something that is unacceptable to observations in quantum mechanics. In fact, I have reasons to believe that the probabilistic nature of quantum interactions is precisely due to the non-existence of time. It cannot be any other way. This is a good thing within the context of free will, consciouness and that sort of thing.

    I don’t see how a time dimension would make time impossible. Time is merely the context in which change happens over the concept of the idea of expansion. The idea of time exists and so the metaphysical derivation of the concept of expansion by the flow of change “forward” is united into the abstract simplification of the totality of its significance we call “time.” I might also ad that to question the objective reality of time and space and not matter is questionable because how do we separate the idea of the physical from the area in which it exists. To throw out time and space is to ignore the environment and characteristics we inherently observe- To ignore the separation of two bodies and call that only matter is to unite all things into the term matter which we call the universe.

    It is interesting to ad what Gödel thought of time after studying Einstein’s general relativity and putting it under the scrutiny of logical inquiry- that time could not exist except in the intuitive sense. Yet the intuitive sense is what underwrites all logical principles as Gödel points out with his mathematical incompleteness- something that he seemingly failed to except as it would also apply on philosophical grounds – to believe in the formalistic scholasticism of a world without objective time is to enter into a belief- which you honestly called it- that is however IMO not supported buy intuition and is therefore for me an unnecessary commitment that i find neither attractive or useful-

    The concept of space- which you somehow conflate with the biblical divine experiences of teleportation – is in abstract philosophy not sequestered by the metaphysical consequences of an infinite regress- all of space and the matter inherent there in were extremely small at the beginning of the big bang- or of the physical universe in which we inhabit if you will- hence I feel that the other bigger concept of god or heaven and so forth is not inclusive in space but space and time in it- space is a limited element of physical reality that is not depend or infinity- because physical reality is not known to be infinite- this again is a belief- with which I have no quarrel except that I find it unattractive and counterintuitive. The problems viewed with quantum mechanics probably has to due with the issues of causation- which I might ad easily exists within time and space- and the nature of that first cause which has different effects on small and large bodies and their interaction with one another. The issue of the unpredictability of quantum mechanics I believe is due to the nature of the human condition- Being part of the puzzle blinds us from being in that universal objective frame of reference- especially sense the mind works on small actions of quanta which are themselves unpredictable in nature-
    Yet, just because we are people in our meek frame of references who fail to grasp the universe’s objective reality does not mean that such a logical intuitively supported reality cannot exist— It is just that at this current time such a full understanding of which is beyond the threshold of our understanding and even if it all could be sorted out I’m not sure time and space could disappear- and perhaps for a divine reason. I must add that I do not believe that a unified theory is possible – this is why I deem myself a “believer” in the proper sense of the word- attempting to acknowledge my limits and my powers in the fullness of their claims.

  24. 24
    Gerry Rzeppa says:

    “In my cosmology, there is neither time nor space, only matter.” – Mapou

    In my opinion, indulgence in this kind of contra-intuitive speculation is exactly where science goes wrong. The common man knows that time, space, and matter are – for ALL practical purposes – three very real things that differ radically in kind; and when scientists, of any ilk, and however brilliant, confound such things, they’re not helping us out. Similar indulgences allow materialists to assume that life can spontaneously arise out of non-life, which everyone knows is a ludicrous idea. It’s almost as if the scientific establishment has decided that the more unintuitive a theory, the better; and we must resist the temptation to join them in this perverse pursuit.

    A primary example of the effect of this atmosphere on our thinking can be seen in the tireless labors of Dr. Dembski. He finds it necessary to publish forty-page papers like Specification: The Pattern That Signifies Intelligence to explain to other scientists fundamental ideas that are not only obvious to, but readily accepted by, the average man – not to mention most scientists when they’re not preoccupied with being obtuse!

    Now compare that with my presentation of specified complexity in Some of the Parts, a children’s book (accessible via our ad on this site). Or make a serious effort to explain specified complexity to a layman friend. After a great deal of simplification, you’ll find yourself saying something very obvious, and you’ll find your friend saying something like, “Well, duh!”.

  25. 25
    Mapou says:

    Gerry Rzeppa: In my opinion, indulgence in this kind of contra-intuitive speculation is exactly where science goes wrong. The common man knows that time, space, and matter are – for ALL practical purposes – three very real things that differ radically in kind; and when scientists, of any ilk, and however brilliant, confound such things, they’re not helping us out.

    Gerry, mainstream science agrees with you that there is space and time. That’s what Einstein’s theories of special and general relativity are all about. Isaac Newton introduced the idea of space being separate from matter. Gottfried Leibniz denied it but he was not alone.

    I am saying it’s nonsense because I have taken the time to think it through. I always trust logic before I trust my intuition. I am not going to argue my case here any more than I already have even though I think it’s relevant to ID. This is not the forum for it. If any reader is interested in my thoughts on these subjects, they can read them at the following web pages:

    Nasty Little Truth About Spacetime Physics
    More Nasty Little Truths About Physics

    All I can add is that the same persecution that is going on in biology is also happening in physics. Physicists have taken to speculating about really laughable concepts like time travel and parallel universes precisely because they refuse (just like Darwinists) to question their theories.

    One caveat: I am seen by many as a crackpot. So read at your own risk. 🙂

  26. 26
    DaveScot says:

    Time is actually a metric, not a physical property of the universe. Physics doesn’t require time to elapse or flow in any particular direction. Time is simply a unit of change. It is always measured by something that changes consistently like a resonating quartz crystal or vibrating cesium atom. If nothing changes there is no passage of time. The only thing that gives time an apparent direction is the thermodynamic law of entropy but physical law doesn’t forbid decreasing entropy it merely makes it improbable. For instance, there is a vanishingly small but non-zero possibility that all the things that happened in the last hour will exactly undo themselves in the next hour which would effectively reverse the direction of time for that hour as the universe would be exactly restored to the state it was in one hour in the past. Changing the reference frame also alters the passage of time. For an object travelling at the speed of light time is stopped for it while the rest of universe goes on like normal. See the Twin Paradox to learn more. As bizzare as that seems it has been experimentally verified and indeed the global positioning system (GPS) which requires precisely synchronized clocks at different locations within the earth’s gravity well and travelling at different relative speeds must compensate for the relative changes in the passage of time or the nanosecond accurate clocks will drift out of synchronization and position errors will accrue as a result.

  27. 27
    Gerry Rzeppa says:

    “If nothing changes there is no passage of time.” – Dave Scot

    Let’s say we’ve managed to create some self-conscious entities in the memory of a computer. They look around and conclude that unless at least one of the gazillion bits of their memory-based universe changes, no time elapses. But of course they’re wrong, being unaware not only of the machine’s clock, but of the parallel processor next door. Not to mention the larger universe the programmers live in!

    I think it’s best to avoid dogmatic statements about what “time” is or isn’t. We should stick with things like I said before: It seems evident that our Designer intended us to perceive time as a very real and very distinct thing. Can I get an Amen? …and suddenly there appeared a crowd that no man could number – of olympic swimmers, short-order cooks, train conductors, and the rest – saying with a loud voice: “Well, DUH!”

  28. 28

    The University of Minnesota study is unethical because it intentionally induces subjects to cheat.

  29. 29
    DaveScot says:

    Gerry

    Don’t shoot the messenger. I’m just telling you what physics has to say about the nature of time to correct inaccurate claims about time & physics. Different religions may have different views of time. I don’t really have anything to say about that other than I don’t give much credence to religious revelation as they all appear to be written by men claiming to be inspired by some deity or another. In my opinion deities should speak for themselves instead of having ghost writers.

  30. 30
    Gerry Rzeppa says:

    “In my opinion deities should speak for themselves instead of having ghost writers.” – Dave Scot

    Imagin again, if you will, those self-conscious entities we created living in the memory of our computer. How would you suggest that we flesh and blood programmers “speak for ourselves” to them? And would they believe it when we did? I think it’s a more difficult problem than you suppose…

  31. 31
    DaveScot says:

    Gerry

    I’d believe it if I saw the ten commandments suddenly carved into the face of the moon a hundred meters deep in letters kilometers in size. Or any other number of miraculous ways of communicating. While I still couldn’t be sure I wasn’t living in some permutation of “The Matrix” where all my memories and experiences are false I think I’d probably still believe my senses. We should probably leave it at that and agree to disagree. I’ll give you the last word.

  32. 32
    Gerry Rzeppa says:

    “I’d believe it if I saw the ten commandments suddenly carved into the face of the moon a hundred meters deep in letters kilometers in size… I’ll give you the last word.”

    Why should God bother to carve ’em into the moon when when He’s already carved them (or something very much like them) into our hearts and heads? Conscience is a universal and undeniable non-material force in every man’s life – it can make a man do what he ought to do, even if that’s not what he needs or wants. And the fact that you know what I mean by “ought” is proof that the letters are big enough for even you to read! 🙂

  33. 33
    Gerry Rzeppa says:

    Sorry, I forgot to mention that conscience is both easy to describe and highly unlikely to arise by chance, so it passes the specified complexity test and must therefore be the result of design.

    Who would design such a thing? Why?

  34. 34
    Aaron says:

    IMHO it’s rather obvious that beliefs inform actions and behavior. The beliefs of the September 2001 hijackers informed their terrorist actions. Eric Rudolph’s beliefs that the US sanctioning of abortion should go punished informed his actions to bomb Centennial Olympic Park in 1996.

    Imagine the resulting behavior of the following belief:

    Because man evolved into a social species, various pressures selected those individuals who acted morally which fostered a healthy society in which offspring were more likely to survive and thrive. It is therefore beneficial to the survival to act morally.

    Much data backs this belief. I don’t think the result of teaching this could be at all harmful.

  35. 35
    D.A.Newton says:

    Why would an experiment such as this even be of any significance? All one need do is look at the effectiveness of advertising, especially the kind that attempts to inculcate the notion that what it’s selling is “cool”, fashionable, or makes one appear more desirable in some way. This kind of pitch imparts almost no practical information, but is highly effective in getting members of its targeted audience (marks in Carney speak) to view themselves differently if they only have the product being sold. Just look at how many different ways one can supposedly lose all that “belly fat!”

  36. 36
    Gerry Rzeppa says:

    Brilliant Physicist: “There’s no such thing as time.”

    Ordinary Man: “You said that before. But I’m busy now. Can we talk about this later?

  37. 37
    Frost122585 says:

    Davescott- to call time a “metric” and claim that physics has nothing to say about in which direction if flows is incorrect- You see the concept of time as expierenced in the mind is as best as physics can tell- a physical expierence betwee nbrain waves- sight reason and the physical body. There is not diffence between feeling somthing solid or deriving the intution of the passage of change as time is derived by sight memeory and reason which are all physically rooted- to get outside of physics one has to ask what is guiding time or what created or desingd it- but this question can equally be asked of matter- so unless you consider physics to say nothign about what matter can and will do then i think your claim that physics has nothing to say about which direction time is going in- is misconcieved.

    To elucidate my point a little further- think about all the so called alws of physics and the like – they are all based on expeirce and that which we observe that is universal or cannot be broken- for if they could be broken then they would not be laws. Time as a metric if you like flows foward- i cant go back and change thigs that i have done-

    even if time travel was possible until it is proven so the flow of time forward is a law and one which i think is very well gounded in physics and has yet to be challanged by a winner of tomorrow’s lottery- 😉

  38. 38
    StephenB says:

    Frost 122585, I didn’t get the impression that Dave Scot was subjectivising time. It seemed to me that he was updating Aristotles description of time as “a measure of motion.”

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