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“One need not even be a theist to think physics is not going to replace metaphysics.”

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At Patheos, John Mark Reynolds had this to say about science and faith:

One need not even be a theist to think physics is not going to replace metaphysics. Information, personality, mathematics, logic itself is not reducible to physics. Mind and matter seem like different stuff. You can build most physical objects out of Legos, but you cannot build a number with even infinite Legos and infinite time.

If either mind or matter is “all,” then mind seems a better candidate. Life might be a dream God’s mind and boats still be rowed by men, but nobody has yet to describe how matter and energy make the ideas in dreams. Most Christians have believed that Mind came first and then matter, but that both irreducible type of “stuff” was needed.

Religion, philosophy, literature, and all the arts are mental means of knowing about the “higher things.” Science tells us about the material world using the products, mathematics and science, of mind.

keiths - Just a few questions. My goal is to hopefully prod you into some humility, not to insult you. Have you ever taken a course in quantum mechanics? Do you know how accurate these experiments BA quotes are and what are the logical ramifications? What I can't understand is why you base your life on non-robust, indefinite experimental data concerning the assumptions some people make about the mind body problem. You describe very difficult and inconclusive results as if they are a slam dunk for your position - yet ignore straight forward results from physics which challenge the very presuppositions about the fundamental basis of the world. Do you not understand what it means to generate information? Do you not understand that meaning can definitionally never be generated by an unguided source no matter how many loops and feedback mechanisms are included because meaning involves purpose. The very fact that you say that you say you "decide" to take the correct position on abstract concepts such as whether there is a soul or not, and others "decide" to take the other position because they "choose" to ignore the "meaning" of your "irrefutable arguments" creates an inherent self-contradiction in your position. i don't see why your mind denies that. JDH
The main problem in reconciling General Relativity and Quantum mechanics is the Zero/Infinity conflict:
Quantum Mechanics and Relativity – The Collapse Of Physics? – video – with notes as to plausible reconciliation that is missed by materialists http://www.metacafe.com/watch/6597379/ THE MYSTERIOUS ZERO/INFINITY Excerpt: The biggest challenge to today's physicists is how to reconcile general relativity and quantum mechanics. However, these two pillars of modern science were bound to be incompatible. "The universe of general relativity is a smooth rubber sheet. It is continuous and flowing, never sharp, never pointy. Quantum mechanics, on the other hand, describes a jerky and discontinuous universe. What the two theories have in common - and what they clash over - is zero.",, "The infinite zero of a black hole -- mass crammed into zero space, curving space infinitely -- punches a hole in the smooth rubber sheet. The equations of general relativity cannot deal with the sharpness of zero. In a black hole, space and time are meaningless.",, "Quantum mechanics has a similar problem, a problem related to the zero-point energy. The laws of quantum mechanics treat particles such as the electron as points; that is, they take up no space at all. The electron is a zero-dimensional object,,, According to the rules of quantum mechanics, the zero-dimensional electron has infinite mass and infinite charge. http://www.fmbr.org/editoral/edit01_02/edit6_mar02.htm
Yet Christ offers a very credible, empirically backed, 'agent based', instead of 'abstract mathematical description based', reconciliation between the objective world of general relativity and the subjective world of quantum mechanics that solves this zero/infinity conflict between General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics:
The End Of Christianity - Finding a Good God in an Evil World - Pg.31 William Dembski PhD. Mathematics Excerpt: "In mathematics there are two ways to go to infinity. One is to grow large without measure. The other is to form a fraction in which the denominator goes to zero. The Cross is a path of humility in which the infinite God becomes finite and then contracts to zero, only to resurrect and thereby unite a finite humanity within a newfound infinity." http://www.designinference.com/documents/2009.05.end_of_xty.pdf The God of the Mathematicians – Goldman Excerpt: As Gödel told Hao Wang, “Einstein’s religion [was] more abstract, like Spinoza and Indian philosophy. Spinoza’s god is less than a person; mine is more than a person; because God can play the role of a person.” – Kurt Gödel – (Gödel is considered one of the greatest logicians who ever existed) http://www.firstthings.com/article/2010/07/the-god-of-the-mathematicians The Center Of The Universe Is Life - General Relativity, Quantum Mechanics, Entropy and The Shroud Of Turin - video http://vimeo.com/34084462
Verse and music:
Colossians 1:15-20 The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross. Empty (Empty Cross Empty Tomb) with Dan Haseltine Matt Hammitt - music http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=F22MCCNU
"It was not possible to formulate the laws (of quantum theory) in a fully consistent way without reference to consciousness." Eugene Wigner (1902 -1995) from his collection of essays "Symmetries and Reflections – Scientific Essays"; Eugene Wigner laid the foundation for the theory of symmetries in quantum mechanics, for which he received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1963.
As to Jesus defeating death, I think it is interesting to point out a very interesting discrepancy between quantum mechanics and General Relativity. First, both theories (QM and GR) are tested to an extreme degree of accuracy:
The Most Precisely Tested Theory in the History of Science - May 5, 2011 Excerpt: So, which of the two (general relativity or QED) is The Most Precisely Tested Theory in the History of Science? It’s a little tough to quantify a title like that, but I think relativity can claim to have tested the smallest effects. Things like the aluminum ion clock experiments showing shifts in the rate of a clock set moving at a few m/s, or raised by a foot, measure relativistic shifts of a few parts in 10^16. That is, if one clock ticks 10,000,000,000,000,000 times, the other ticks 9,999,999,999,999,999 times. That’s an impressively tiny effect, but the measured value is in good agreement with the predictions of relativity. In the end, though, I have to give the nod to QED, because while the absolute effects in relativity may be smaller, the precision of the measurements in QED is more impressive. Experimental tests of relativity measure tiny shifts, but to only a few decimal places. Experimental tests of QED measure small shifts, but to an absurd number of decimal places. The most impressive of these is the “anomalous magnetic moment of the electron,” expressed is terms of a number g whose best measured value is: g/2 = 1.001 159 652 180 73 (28) Depending on how you want to count it, that’s either 11 or 14 digits of precision (the value you would expect without QED is exactly 1, so in some sense, the shift really starts with the first non-zero decimal place), which is just incredible. And QED correctly predicts all those decimal places (at least to within the measurement uncertainty, given by the two digits in parentheses at the end of that). http://scienceblogs.com/principles/2011/05/05/the-most-precisely-tested-theo/
Yet we find that,,
On The Comparison Of Quantum and Relativity Theories - Sachs - 1986 Excerpt: quantum theory entails and irreducible subjective element in its conceptual basis. In contrast, the theory of relativity when fully exploited, is based on a totally objective view. http://books.google.com/books?id=8qaYGFuXvMkC&pg=PA11#v=onepage&q&f=false
i.e. General Relativity is based on the assumption that there is an objective reality 'out there' independent of our mind,,,
Einstein's gravity theory passes toughest test yet: Bizarre binary star system pushes study of relativity to new limits Apr 25, 2013 by Dave Finley Excerpt: A strange stellar pair nearly 7,000 light-years from Earth has provided physicists with a unique cosmic laboratory for studying the nature of gravity. The extremely strong gravity of a massive neutron star in orbit with a companion white dwarf star puts competing theories of gravity to a test more stringent than any available before. Once again, Albert Einstein's General Theory of Relativity, published in 1915, comes out on top. At some point, however, scientists expect Einstein's model to be invalid under extreme conditions. General Relativity, for example, is incompatible with quantum theory. Physicists hope to find an alternate description of gravity that would eliminate that incompatibility. http://phys.org/news/2013-04-einstein-gravity-theory-toughest-bizarre.html
whereas quantum mechanics has an irreducible subjective element in its conceptual basis:
Can quantum theory be improved? - July 23, 2012 Excerpt: However, in the new paper, the physicists have experimentally demonstrated that there cannot exist any alternative theory that increases the predictive probability of quantum theory by more than 0.165, with the only assumption being that measurement (conscious observation) parameters can be chosen independently (free will assumption) of the other parameters of the theory.,,, ,, the experimental results provide the tightest constraints yet on alternatives to quantum theory. The findings imply that quantum theory is close to optimal in terms of its predictive power, even when the predictions are completely random. http://phys.org/news/2012-07-quantum-theory.html
That quantum mechanics applies to the large, 'macro', scale of the universe, not only to the micro scale, was established here:
Macrorealism Emerging from Quantum Physics - Brukner, Caslav; Kofler, Johannes American Physical Society, APS March Meeting, - March 5-9, 2007 Excerpt: for unrestricted measurement accuracy a violation of macrorealism (i.e., a violation of the Leggett-Garg inequalities) is possible for arbitrary large systems.,, http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2007APS..MARB33005B
and here:
Wheeler's Classic Delayed Choice Experiment: Excerpt: Now, for many billions of years the photon is in transit in region 3. Yet we can choose (many billions of years later) which experimental set up to employ – the single wide-focus, or the two narrowly focused instruments. We have chosen whether to know which side of the galaxy the photon passed by (by choosing whether to use the two-telescope set up or not, which are the instruments that would give us the information about which side of the galaxy the photon passed). We have delayed this choice until a time long after the particles "have passed by one side of the galaxy, or the other side of the galaxy, or both sides of the galaxy," so to speak. Yet, it seems paradoxically that our later choice of whether to obtain this information determines which side of the galaxy the light passed, so to speak, billions of years ago. So it seems that time has nothing to do with effects of quantum mechanics. And, indeed, the original thought experiment was not based on any analysis of how particles evolve and behave over time – it was based on the mathematics. This is what the mathematics predicted for a result, and this is exactly the result obtained in the laboratory. http://www.bottomlayer.com/bottom/basic_delayed_choice.htm
That the 4-D space-time of General Relativity must somehow 'emerge' for the timeless physics of Quantum Mechanics is noted here:
LIVING IN A QUANTUM WORLD - Vlatko Vedral - 2011 Excerpt: Thus, the fact that quantum mechanics applies on all scales forces us to confront the theory’s deepest mysteries. We cannot simply write them off as mere details that matter only on the very smallest scales. For instance, space and time are two of the most fundamental classical concepts, but according to quantum mechanics they are secondary. The entanglements are primary. They interconnect quantum systems without reference to space and time. If there were a dividing line between the quantum and the classical worlds, we could use the space and time of the classical world to provide a framework for describing quantum processes. But without such a dividing line—and, indeed, with­out a truly classical world—we lose this framework. We must ex­plain space and time (4D space-time) as somehow emerging from fundamental­ly spaceless and timeless physics. http://phy.ntnu.edu.tw/~chchang/Notes10b/0611038.pdf
Yet the 4-D space-time of General Relativity refuses to be unified with quantum mechanics even though QM unifies nicely with Einstein's special relativity:
Theories of the Universe: Quantum Mechanics vs. General Relativity Excerpt: The first attempt at unifying relativity and quantum mechanics took place when special relativity was merged with electromagnetism. This created the theory of quantum electrodynamics, or QED. It is an example of what has come to be known as relativistic quantum field theory, or just quantum field theory. QED is considered by most physicists to be the most precise theory of natural phenomena ever developed. In the 1960s and '70s, the success of QED prompted other physicists to try an analogous approach to unifying the weak, the strong, and the gravitational forces. Out of these discoveries came another set of theories that merged the strong and weak forces called quantum chromodynamics, or QCD, and quantum electroweak theory, or simply the electroweak theory, which you've already been introduced to. If you examine the forces and particles that have been combined in the theories we just covered, you'll notice that the obvious force missing is that of gravity. http://www.infoplease.com/cig/theories-universe/quantum-mechanics-vs-general-relativity.html
someone else, For evidence that the soul doesn't exist, see this thread. keiths
Just an addition: it's not "mind" which is "better", it is SPIRIT which is BEST. :) The Spirit uses "mind" or "intelligence" to find a way through the world. Mind is connected with matter and can use it or derive its immanent order. See the experiments of Wilder Penfield, who proved man to have more than a body - a soul. Spirit is what is "under" or "behind" or "over" each and every creation and spirit is what is boggling the minds of all who try to expand the event horizons of human boundaries. Jesus of Nazareth proved that man has more than just body and soul, a spirit: he ascended from death, broke the event horizons of the human being. We need this, spirit, to make contact with our creator. But be careful which spirit you follow. There's a whole spiritual world out there . . . someone else
Another 2 + 2 = err... errr.... err, is, of course the Fine Tuning - as some atheists have apparently admitted. Notably, Anthony Flew, when he renounced it in favour of deism. The 'conceptual leap' required to arrive at the sum of 2 + 2, and referred to in my #4, above, should, I think, have been enclosed between inverted commas... Axel
Of note: Standard deviation Excerpt: Particle physics uses a standard of "5 sigma" for the declaration of a discovery.[3] At five-sigma there is only one chance in nearly two million that a random fluctuation would yield the result. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Standard_deviation#Particle_physics bornagain77
(Sorry. I accidentally hit the return) Only a mad postulation of an infinity of worlds coming together to create AND then SUSTAIN this universe, is the consummation of their mature deliberations What tickles me is the materialists' 'escape route': 'Oh, well, you see... quantum mechanics is very mysterious, (ergo, implicitly, let's not take it too seriously. We don't need to bother about certainty to 80 orders of magnitude of the mind's being the creator of the "illusion" of material reality', (discovered in 1925), do we? The Consensus, ironically, are the least scientific, least 'enlightened') thinkers, at the most fundamental level, on the globe. Members of a lost tribe in New Guinea would be much more intelligent. Impossible to be less, since none so blind... They would covet knowledge, instead of running from it, like the materialists. QM was discovered and has been developed by physicists who understood and believed this: 'If the price of avoiding non-locality is to make an intuitive explanation impossible, one has to ask whether the cost is too great.' David Bohm et al. Physc. Rep. 144, 321 (1987) For obvious reasons, the atheist Consensus generally prefers to cast a paradox as a concept that is 'counter-intuitive', so we much forgive Feynman for breaking ranks so wantonly, with his comment below: '...the "paradox" is only a conflict between reality and your feeling of what reality "ought to be." Richard Feynman, in The Feynman Lectures on Physics, vol III, p. 18-9 (1965)' Clearly, Feynman was an agnostic, rather than a 'cocky', militant atheist, and it shows in remarks like that. It's not 'only' a paradox', to the latter, a paradox is a Pandorah's Box to them, a killer of the Promissory Note. It seems eminently sensible and enlightening to so-called, 'quote mine', as I've done above. Fortuitously, you can often also learn, fascinating formulations of truths, from quotes you are not expecting to find, but which advert to areas you are interested in. 'If you want to get things done, go to the top' is not a bad principle, when it comes to understanding this world - and the next, for that matter. Why not learn the most profound truths of science (usually able to be expressed very simply) as they merge with metaphysics, from the great scientists, than argue the toss with 'nutty' materialists, who seek to enmesh you in the nonsense they create, to kid themselves, first and foremost. Axel
They are, in effect, of course, denying design, itself, in everything from an atom to the universe, since design predicates intelligence and purpose. 'Random is as random does', eh? Why does everything SEEM (as the august Dawkins would have it) so exquisitely, purposefully designed? It all harkens back to the assumption of a purposeful, fairly exhaustive intelligibility of the universe, of the Christian scientists of the past, doesn't it? Only a mad postulation of an infinity of worlds coming together and to cereate and then SUSTAIN Axel
'You can build most physical objects out of Legos, but you cannot build a number with even infinite Legos and infinite time.' Surrounded by the most sublime Intelligent Design throughout nature, it's that little equation, 2 + 2 = 4, they can't master, isn't it? Making that final conceptual leap. I wonder why? Axel
keiths vjtorley is right, "a material system is by definition incapable of generating a purely formal concept like “true,” “false,” “reality,” “prime” or even “probable.”" Indeed your "counterexample" of computer arithmetic shows it. A computer does not create concepts. In fact, it is the opposite: concepts created the computer. The design of the computer is the organized set of concepts creating the computer. Only after this a priori creation, the computer is able a posteriori to work according to such concepts. In short we should not confuse "to create" vs. "to work according to". The former pertains to the cause/designer of the computer; the latter pertains to the effect/design, the computer itself. niwrad
Reynolds writes:
Information, personality, mathematics, logic itself is not reducible to physics. Mind and matter seem like different stuff. You can build most physical objects out of Legos, but you cannot build a number with even infinite Legos and infinite time.
I am debating a similar point with vjtorley on this thread. He claims that
A material system is by definition incapable of generating a purely formal concept like “true,” “false,” “reality,” “prime” or even “probable.”
I offer computer arithmetic as a counterexample. keiths
as to this comment of Reynolds:
"If either mind or matter is “all,” then mind seems a better candidate.",,,
And Reynolds, whether he knows it or not, has solid scientific evidence for that common sense gut instinct of his:
Alain Aspect and Anton Zeilinger by Richard Conn Henry - Physics Professor - John Hopkins University Excerpt: Why do people cling with such ferocity to belief in a mind-independent reality? It is surely because if there is no such reality, then ultimately (as far as we can know) mind alone exists. And if mind is not a product of real matter, but rather is the creator of the "illusion" of material reality (which has, in fact, despite the materialists, been known to be the case, since the discovery of quantum mechanics in 1925), then a theistic view of our existence becomes the only rational alternative to solipsism (solipsism is the philosophical idea that only one's own mind is sure to exist). (Dr. Henry's referenced experiment and paper - “An experimental test of non-local realism” by S. Gröblacher et. al., Nature 446, 871, April 2007 - “To be or not to be local” by Alain Aspect, Nature 446, 866, April 2007 http://henry.pha.jhu.edu/aspect.html “I’m going to talk about the Bell inequality, and more importantly a new inequality that you might not have heard of called the Leggett inequality, that was recently measured. It was actually formulated almost 30 years ago by Professor Leggett, who is a Nobel Prize winner, but it wasn’t tested until about a year and a half ago (in 2007), when an article appeared in Nature, that the measurement was made by this prominent quantum group in Vienna led by Anton Zeilinger, which they measured the Leggett inequality, which actually goes a step deeper than the Bell inequality and rules out any possible interpretation other than consciousness creates reality when the measurement is made.” – Bernard Haisch, Ph.D., Calphysics Institute, is an astrophysicist and author of over 130 scientific publications.
Preceding quote taken from this following video;
Quantum Mechanics and Consciousness - A New Measurement - Bernard Haisch, Ph.D (Shortened version of entire video with notes in description of video) http://vimeo.com/37517080 Quantum physics says goodbye to reality - Apr 20, 2007 Excerpt: They found that, just as in the realizations of Bell's thought experiment, Leggett's inequality is violated – thus stressing the quantum-mechanical assertion that reality does not exist when we're not observing it. "Our study shows that 'just' giving up the concept of locality would not be enough to obtain a more complete description of quantum mechanics," Aspelmeyer told Physics Web. "You would also have to give up certain intuitive features of realism." http://physicsworld.com/cws/article/news/27640
please note the extreme level of certainty to which this finding is confirmed:
Do we create the world just by looking at it? - 2008 Excerpt: In mid-2007 Fedrizzi found that the new realism model was violated by 80 orders of magnitude; the group was even more assured that quantum mechanics was correct. http://seedmagazine.com/content/article/the_reality_tests/P3/
And although I am not quite sure what it means to violate something by '80 orders of magnitude', (I suspect it is a very good level since the universe 'only' has 80 orders of magnitude subatomic particles in it), the following test went beyond even that 10^80 level of certainty:
A simple approach to test Leggett’s model of nonlocal quantum correlations - 2009 Excerpt of Abstract: Bell's strong sentence "Correlations cry out for explanations" remains relevant,,,we go beyond Leggett's model, and show that one cannot ascribe even partially defined individual properties to the components of a maximally entangled pair. http://www.mendeley.com/research/a-simple-approach-to-test-leggetts-model-of-nonlocal-quantum-correlations/
But to see how much confidence we can put in these quantum experiments, I was able to find another ballpark figure for how confident we can be that 'transcendent' quantum non-locality is real:
Closing the last Bell-test loophole for photons - June 11, 2013 Excerpt: that confirmed quantum entanglement to nearly 70 standard deviations.,,, http://phys.org/news/2013-06-bell-test-loophole-photons.html
The following article gives us a small glimpse as to what it truly means for entanglement to be confirmed to an order of '70 standard deviations':
SSDD: a 22 sigma event is consistent with the physics of fair coins? - June 23, 2013 Excerpt: So 500 coins heads is (500-250)/11 = 22 standard deviations (22 sigma) from expectation! These numbers are so extreme, it’s probably inappropriate to even use the normal distribution’s approximation of the binomial distribution, and hence “22 sigma” just becomes a figure of speech in this extreme case… https://uncommondesc.wpengine.com/mathematics/ssdd-a-22-sigma-event-is-consistent-with-the-physics-of-fair-coins/
That means we can have more confidence that than we can even imagine that these findings for a 'Theistic' universe are correct. Thus as far as any supposed conflict between science and faith, it appears atheistic religion is the one left holding the bag requiring its believers to have 'blind faith' with no evidence that it is true: Supplemental note
Divinely Planted Quantum States - video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qCTBygadaM4#t=156s
Verse and music:
John 3:12 I have spoken to you of earthly things and you do not believe; how then will you believe if I speak of heavenly things? Sara Groves - Something Changed - slideshow http://www.vimeo.com/28076423

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