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# Theoretically the past will exactly repeat itself.

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drafterman
 Started: 11/17/2011 Category: Philosophy Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period Viewed: 1,429 times Debate No: 19340
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 Pro So basically my position is that some time in the future we will all live these lifes again without a single change. So for example in the future I will be sitting at this computer typing the exact same thing on the exact same day with not a single difference (except for the fact that time has elapsed). I will let my opponent first accept the challenge and then I will make my argument.Report this Argument Con I accept the challenge. Good luck!Report this Argument Pro If you roll a die once the chance of landing on 3 is 1 in 6. If you roll a die twice the chance of landing on 3 at least once or more improves. If you have a deck of cards labeled 1-1billion the chance of pulling out the number 5 is 1 in 1 billion, which is very slim odds and anyone betting on pulling out a 5 would most certainly lose their money. But what if you they had 1 billion chances to pull out a five (assuming after pulling out each card you replace it and shuffle the deck); then theoretically you should pull out a five at least once. Also if you pulled out a card indefinitely until you got 5 then the chance of you pulling out a 5 becomes a 100% certainty. So back to the subject at hand; the chance that my life it its whole will be repeated again sometime in the future is astronomically slim, considering that there are trillions upon trillions of factors that could be changed. However theoretically the chance that this occurs is 100% if there is an infinite amount of time/chances. It would be like if you continued to draw a card out of the deck forever you'd eventually draw a certain card, or a certain combo of cards. To summarize, theoretically the past will repeat exactly how it was at some time in the future given that there will always be a future and a future for that future meaning unlimited amounts of time and chances for said past to occur.Report this Argument Con First, my opponent's argument, as presented, requires an infinite timeline in order to entail the mathematical certainty that is required. Only when dealing with infinities could we say that any event dealing with probabilities will happen. We don't know if time will go one forever. My opponent needs to demonstrate this for the argument.Second, the scope of the argument includes the entire universe. However, for the past to repeat itself, that includes every particle that exists now will exist when the past repeats itself. However, the existence of black holes ensures that this cannot happen. Blackholes irrevocably absorb particles, thus permanently alterting the configuration of the universe to prevent exact duplication of any state.Third, the second law of thermodynamics says that the universe will increasely become more disordered, preventing past, orderly states, from happening by chance. My opponent needs to demonstrate that this law is false, or that the universe is not a closed system.Fourth, in a more philosophical bent, there is the question as to whether or not an event that is repeated is the same event. Events are uniquely defined by their space-time coordinates. So even if the same particles behave in the same way, those events occupy different points along the time line, and, therefore, are not identical.Report this Argument Pro PS:I read a lot about black holes, the universe etc, etc and a lot of it was beyond me, so I apologies if I am completely misinterpreting/understanding something. 1)Theoretically I'd say that "time" is infinite and the state of matter is what changes. I cannot think of any way to show that time is infinite. 2)Black holes. In theory there are also white holes which spew new particles into the universe, and which are connected to black holes and are the other side of black holes, meaning that the particles sucked into a black hole will eventually exit out a white hole back into the universe. 3)Second law of thermodynamics. Some researchers believe they have found another universe that exists alongside our own that has collided with our own leaving a visible imprint; this tells me that outside our universe there is something else were particles, heat etc. can be exchanged. http://www.popsci.com... 4)The philosophical bent. In my first post were I explained my position and so forth I excluded the fact that the events would occur at different times on a time line. So I agree with you point; but I feel that it should be excluded.Report this Argument Con Infinitude of TimeSince your argument depends on what is theoretical, and it is theoretical that the universe (and, hence, time) could exist forever, I will grant you this point. Time could, theoretically, be infinite in the sense that it has not been ruled out as an option within the field of science.Black Holes/White HolesWhite holes are still in the realm of speculation. Firstly, the problems that White Holes allegedly fix vis-a-vis Black Holes are fixed through other, more accpeted means, such as Hawking Radiation. In this sense Black Holes and White Holes are the same object, though being the solution to different mathematical consequences of General Relativity. Other hypotheses which include White Holes place them at the beginning of other universes. Thus, when a black hole is created in our universe, a white hole is created as the birth of a new universe. Neither of these explanations allow for your resolution. 1) The Hawking Radiation consists of the emission of particles that are distinct from the particles absorbed by the black hole. They are, therefore, not the same particles. 2) The past and the future refer to a timeline, ostensibly this timeline, of this universe. Spacetime are part of the fabric of this universe, not indpendent abstract concepts. Another universe would have another timeline and events happening within that universe do not count with regards to this universe.Universe CollisionThis is more speculation and only causes us to regress. If our universe isn't a closed system, but rather a component of a larger system, then the second law still applies, just to that larger system. So, ultimately, it would need to be shown that the second law is, somehow, wrong. Furthermore, you need to posit a mechanism by which such collisions happen ad infinitum. The collision theory posits a collision as an explanation for the beginning of our universe. Your resolution depends on an infinite number of tries in order for the past to reproduce itself. You need to show that the universe will collide an infinute number of times.Philosophical UniquenessI'll defer this point at the moment.Report this Argument Pro Hawking radiation. From what I understand the emissions from black holes would be made of photons. Photons can be removed and added to particles, meaning that just because particles enter a black hole and come out different doesn't mean that matter is indefinitely changed. The photons can be re added to the particles that lost them. I do not think that the idea that when black holes are created a white hole is created as the birth of a new universe discounts my resolution. First the white holes doesn't necessarily have to create a new universe it could be just emitting particles into an already created universe. Second I don't see why the forming of a new universe, and the exchanging of particles from t3o universes makes it so that those functions can't occur in reverse, or be repeated. Another black hole can form in the new universe and send the particles back to the universe that lost them. As my last post in this debate; I would like to thank my opponent for his contributions. I did a lot of reading and feel that I've learned something from this debate, and rather enjoyed having it. I hope my opponent feels the same, and if not I ask him to not say so because sometimes ignorance is bliss : )Report this Argument Con Hawking RadiationParticles generated by hawking radiation are distinct and independent from the particles absorbed by the black-hole itself. They aren't the same particles. Your assertion is that the past would repeat itself without any differences, but using different particles to recreate the past is a difference.WhiteholesAgain, whiteholes are just speculation, unless they actually exist, they don't support your resolution.SummaryThe argument depends on the universe being a closed system in which it is possible for any state or configuration to occur on a long enough timeline. It discounts the existence of laws and entities which irrevocably alter the state of the universe. Namely: entropy and black holes.The resolution is not: the past can repeat itself but will repeat itself; the latter require a larger burden than the former.Thank you.Report this Argument
19 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 11 through 19 records.
Posted by Leftii 1 year ago
Con's argument of black holes and "differing particles" is incorrect. Theoretically, every sub-atom is identical to another of the same sub-atom. A quark is identical to a different quark. Technically (and most importantly, theoretically) they are the same particle, as they display all the same properties.
Posted by Leftii 1 year ago
An interesting debate. If I could be bothered to vote, I should "Vote Pro", as he has cast a theoretical situation which obtains just one flaw, of which Con has not mentioned. The theory requires a consistent universe, of which none of the following should differ in a constant direction at multiple points throughout the fourth dimension: 1) Mass, 2) Energy, 3) Volume.

1) Although the amount of mass in our universe differs slightly, transferring into energy only in black holes, it is reversible (see 2).

2) Although the amount of energy in our universe differs slightly, transferring into mass only in supernovas, it is reversible (see 1).

3) This is where the universe shows incostistency. The volume of space in the universe is constantly increasing and will continue indefinitely (entropy). If one point in time is similar to another, there must be consistency.

If there is a wavering or constant volume of space in our universe (If the fourth dimension were a perfect fourth dimensional sphere), however, the probability of the order repeating after an infinite amount of space in the fourth dimension is infinite.
Posted by drafterman 1 year ago
you *can't* just add the probabilities together as you did.
Posted by drafterman 1 year ago
In the scenario described that is not true. The odds of any specific number coming up on a single roll of a six sided die is 1 in 6, as you say. But if you are talking about the odds of a specific number coming up at least once for a number of roles, you can just add the probabilities together as you did.

If the odds of a specific number coming up are 1 in 6, then the odds of that number *not* coming up are 5 in 6. So the odds of that number not coming up for both the first AND second roles is 5/6 * 5/6 or 25/36. The inverse of "never coming up" is "comes up at least once." Thus, the probability of that situation is 1 - 25/36, or 11/36. About 1 third, as Pro stated. If you doubt the math, then simply pull up excel, and write out all the possible combinations (1,1; 1,2; 1,3 ... 6,4, 6,5, 6,6), pick a number, and count how many roles contain that number at least once. You'll find 11 of them.
Posted by ReformedArsenal 1 year ago
If you roll a dice the chance of it landing on any given number is 1:6, if you roll that dice twice the chance is 2:12... which is exactly the same as 1:6.
Posted by Nur-Ab-Sal 1 year ago
Fantastic debate. We don't have enough math or science debates.
Posted by maurelio1234 1 year ago
For me the initial argument is flawed because it assumes that every possible configuration is "removed from the deck" once it is shown. Q: What if in the future a set of configurations start repeating themselves in an infinite loop? A: Well, the present will never repeat itself ;).
Posted by DavInChains 1 year ago
Very interesting. Unfortunately I can't vote - as I don't live in one of the specified countries.
Posted by Maikuru 1 year ago