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Life.

bossyburrito
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8/4/2013 7:43:36 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
What do you believe distinguishes the living from the nonliving? What does, say, a plant do that sets it apart from a rock?
#UnbanTheMadman

"Some will sell their dreams for small desires
Or lose the race to rats
Get caught in ticking traps
And start to dream of somewhere
To relax their restless flight
Somewhere out of a memory of lighted streets on quiet nights..."

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the_croftmeister
Posts: 678
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8/4/2013 7:48:09 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/4/2013 7:43:36 PM, bossyburrito wrote:
What do you believe distinguishes the living from the nonliving? What does, say, a plant do that sets it apart from a rock?
Two things,
Reproduction: Creating more copies of itself.
Self-preservation: Making internal changes to preserve its ability to reproduce.
AnDoctuir
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8/4/2013 7:55:25 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
I'm not sure what this is doing in philosophy, but I presume it's to make some sort of a statement as regards us in which case I have this for you: http://en.wikipedia.org...(plant)

J.K. Rowling's Mandrake Root... who knows, right?
bossyburrito
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8/4/2013 8:27:12 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/4/2013 7:55:25 PM, AnDoctuir wrote:
I'm not sure what this is doing in philosophy, but I presume it's to make some sort of a statement as regards us in which case I have this for you: http://en.wikipedia.org...(plant)

J.K. Rowling's Mandrake Root... who knows, right?

What does that have to do with the question?
#UnbanTheMadman

"Some will sell their dreams for small desires
Or lose the race to rats
Get caught in ticking traps
And start to dream of somewhere
To relax their restless flight
Somewhere out of a memory of lighted streets on quiet nights..."

~ Rush
AnDoctuir
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8/4/2013 8:30:55 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Figured I might have inspired your question. I mean, otherwise it's just the 7 characteristics of life, no? :P
bossyburrito
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8/4/2013 8:43:17 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/4/2013 8:30:55 PM, AnDoctuir wrote:
Figured I might have inspired your question. I mean, otherwise it's just the 7 characteristics of life, no? :P

Uh, what seven characteristics?
#UnbanTheMadman

"Some will sell their dreams for small desires
Or lose the race to rats
Get caught in ticking traps
And start to dream of somewhere
To relax their restless flight
Somewhere out of a memory of lighted streets on quiet nights..."

~ Rush
AnDoctuir
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8/4/2013 8:43:54 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/4/2013 8:43:17 PM, bossyburrito wrote:
At 8/4/2013 8:30:55 PM, AnDoctuir wrote:
Figured I might have inspired your question. I mean, otherwise it's just the 7 characteristics of life, no? :P

Uh, what seven characteristics?

http://infohost.nmt.edu...
000ike
Posts: 11,196
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8/4/2013 8:52:35 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
I'd say that nothing, in principle, differentiates a plant from a rock. You could argue that living things have purpose and end-directed function, but it would be a mistake to objectify that concept. Purpose is an explanatory tool describing the coherent behavior of physical objects - so it is an item of subjective reasoning and nothing else.

Faculty is inherent to all physical things. Faculties that cohere with each other produce functions. Functions that cohere with each other produce higher, emergent functions. This progression of unified behavior is what our minds are configured to understand as purpose. So a plant simply has a more complex functional hierarchy than a rock. This blurs the living/non-living dichotomy that I think, more often than not, confuses the issue.
"A stupid despot may constrain his slaves with iron chains; but a true politician binds them even more strongly with the chain of their own ideas" - Michel Foucault
AlbinoBunny
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8/4/2013 8:57:29 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/4/2013 8:43:54 PM, AnDoctuir wrote:
At 8/4/2013 8:43:17 PM, bossyburrito wrote:
At 8/4/2013 8:30:55 PM, AnDoctuir wrote:
Figured I might have inspired your question. I mean, otherwise it's just the 7 characteristics of life, no? :P

Uh, what seven characteristics?

http://infohost.nmt.edu...

Yes, I was thinking about the "7 things", but I couldn't remember them, or find them on Google... lol
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Sidewalker
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8/5/2013 7:11:49 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/4/2013 7:48:09 PM, the_croftmeister wrote:
At 8/4/2013 7:43:36 PM, bossyburrito wrote:
What do you believe distinguishes the living from the nonliving? What does, say, a plant do that sets it apart from a rock?
Two things,
Reproduction: Creating more copies of itself.

Crystals do that all the time, the largest part of our inorganic environment was created by the process of crystals creating copies of themselves.

Self-preservation: Making internal changes to preserve its ability to reproduce.

Nope, that is not the distinction between life and non-life.

There are naturally forming units of matter, the hydrogen atom, ice crystals, protein molecules, are units whose form is organized within. They all show a tendency to protect themselves from dissolution and repair themselves from within when they have been disturbed or damaged. Such natural form building activities are occurring in all the time. Self-integrated units of matter with the tendency for self-preservation are in fact observed from the beginning of the creation of matter in the big bang.

Let's take a simple example; in the sun we have a spontaneous reaction, four hydrogen atoms combine to create one helium atom, add up the total matter and it's slightly less, the excess matter was released in the form of heat, that's where the heat coming from the sun came from. But the resultant helium atom is a much more complex assembly, it is a whole that is more than the sum of its parts, it's more stable, it will in fact recover its form when damaged, and it possesses new "potentials". This potential resulting from the increase in order also begins a chain of events of further increasing order and form, resulting in oxygen, carbon, iron, amino acids, nucleoproteins, and then biological systems, life, man, and the aggregations of man into civilizations.

Throughout the world of inorganic matter we can see a natural tendency for the creation of self-organizing wholes to form. Recognizing that life emerged from a continuous process that began in the big bang it is very hard to know where to draw the line between life and nonlife, there is clearly something that brings things matter together to form larger self-organizing wholes, something that transcends the reductive and materialistic frame of reference of science, something that creates "unity", and it has been observed to be operating since long before life emerged. At the end of the chain, biological systems certainly appear to operate under a different set of laws; life pretty much has to be considered a special case, but those laws may not be so special, they certainly have been operating long before life emerged and replication and self-preservation clearly are not where you can draw the line.
"It is one of the commonest of mistakes to consider that the limit of our power of perception is also the limit of all there is to perceive." " C. W. Leadbeater
The_Fool_on_the_hill
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8/5/2013 11:53:04 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/4/2013 7:55:25 PM, AnDoctuir wrote:
I'm not sure what this is doing in philosophy, but I presume it's to make some sort of a statement as regards us in which case I have this for you: http://en.wikipedia.org...(plant)

J.K. Rowling's Mandrake Root... who knows, right?

The Fool: We need only ask three questions to reduce anything, to philosophy, why, why, and why?

What constitutes a living thing is as philosophical as it gets!
"The bud disappears when the blossom breaks through, and we might say that the former is refuted by the latter; in the same way when the fruit comes, the blossom may be explained to be a false form of the plant's existence, for the fruit appears as its true nature in place of the blossom. These stages are not merely differentiated; they supplant one another as being incompatible with one another." G. W. F. HEGEL
Df0512
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8/5/2013 1:50:35 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/4/2013 7:43:36 PM, bossyburrito wrote:
What do you believe distinguishes the living from the nonliving? What does, say, a plant do that sets it apart from a rock?

I think it's just our preception of things. We look at a rock and see a rock, we look at a plant and see a plant. Thats about as far as that goes. If only we could change our preception of those things that would be different. Same for the living and the dead except with death our preception does change. I think the difference there is pretty obvious. But if we could again change our preception of living and dying who knows. We may find that the essence of that person is still there after all. Who knows. Interesting topic to think about.
the_croftmeister
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8/5/2013 7:24:53 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/5/2013 7:11:49 AM, Sidewalker wrote:
At 8/4/2013 7:48:09 PM, the_croftmeister wrote:
At 8/4/2013 7:43:36 PM, bossyburrito wrote:
What do you believe distinguishes the living from the nonliving? What does, say, a plant do that sets it apart from a rock?
Two things,
Reproduction: Creating more copies of itself.

Crystals do that all the time, the largest part of our inorganic environment was created by the process of crystals creating copies of themselves.

Self-preservation: Making internal changes to preserve its ability to reproduce.

Nope, that is not the distinction between life and non-life.

There are naturally forming units of matter, the hydrogen atom, ice crystals, protein molecules, are units whose form is organized within. They all show a tendency to protect themselves from dissolution and repair themselves from within when they have been disturbed or damaged. Such natural form building activities are occurring in all the time. Self-integrated units of matter with the tendency for self-preservation are in fact observed from the beginning of the creation of matter in the big bang.

Let's take a simple example; in the sun we have a spontaneous reaction, four hydrogen atoms combine to create one helium atom, add up the total matter and it's slightly less, the excess matter was released in the form of heat, that's where the heat coming from the sun came from. But the resultant helium atom is a much more complex assembly, it is a whole that is more than the sum of its parts, it's more stable, it will in fact recover its form when damaged, and it possesses new "potentials". This potential resulting from the increase in order also begins a chain of events of further increasing order and form, resulting in oxygen, carbon, iron, amino acids, nucleoproteins, and then biological systems, life, man, and the aggregations of man into civilizations.

Throughout the world of inorganic matter we can see a natural tendency for the creation of self-organizing wholes to form. Recognizing that life emerged from a continuous process that began in the big bang it is very hard to know where to draw the line between life and nonlife, there is clearly something that brings things matter together to form larger self-organizing wholes, something that transcends the reductive and materialistic frame of reference of science, something that creates "unity", and it has been observed to be operating since long before life emerged. At the end of the chain, biological systems certainly appear to operate under a different set of laws; life pretty much has to be considered a special case, but those laws may not be so special, they certainly have been operating long before life emerged and replication and self-preservation clearly are not where you can draw the line.
Fair call, what would you say about an added complexity requirement to these two processes?
Sidewalker
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8/6/2013 4:13:38 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/5/2013 7:24:53 PM, the_croftmeister wrote:
At 8/5/2013 7:11:49 AM, Sidewalker wrote:
At 8/4/2013 7:48:09 PM, the_croftmeister wrote:
At 8/4/2013 7:43:36 PM, bossyburrito wrote:
What do you believe distinguishes the living from the nonliving? What does, say, a plant do that sets it apart from a rock?
Two things,
Reproduction: Creating more copies of itself.

Crystals do that all the time, the largest part of our inorganic environment was created by the process of crystals creating copies of themselves.

Self-preservation: Making internal changes to preserve its ability to reproduce.

Nope, that is not the distinction between life and non-life.

There are naturally forming units of matter, the hydrogen atom, ice crystals, protein molecules, are units whose form is organized within. They all show a tendency to protect themselves from dissolution and repair themselves from within when they have been disturbed or damaged. Such natural form building activities are occurring in all the time. Self-integrated units of matter with the tendency for self-preservation are in fact observed from the beginning of the creation of matter in the big bang.

Let's take a simple example; in the sun we have a spontaneous reaction, four hydrogen atoms combine to create one helium atom, add up the total matter and it's slightly less, the excess matter was released in the form of heat, that's where the heat coming from the sun came from. But the resultant helium atom is a much more complex assembly, it is a whole that is more than the sum of its parts, it's more stable, it will in fact recover its form when damaged, and it possesses new "potentials". This potential resulting from the increase in order also begins a chain of events of further increasing order and form, resulting in oxygen, carbon, iron, amino acids, nucleoproteins, and then biological systems, life, man, and the aggregations of man into civilizations.

Throughout the world of inorganic matter we can see a natural tendency for the creation of self-organizing wholes to form. Recognizing that life emerged from a continuous process that began in the big bang it is very hard to know where to draw the line between life and nonlife, there is clearly something that brings things matter together to form larger self-organizing wholes, something that transcends the reductive and materialistic frame of reference of science, something that creates "unity", and it has been observed to be operating since long before life emerged. At the end of the chain, biological systems certainly appear to operate under a different set of laws; life pretty much has to be considered a special case, but those laws may not be so special, they certainly have been operating long before life emerged and replication and self-preservation clearly are not where you can draw the line.
Fair call, what would you say about an added complexity requirement to these two processes?

I'd say that's a step in the right direction, but it still makes it very hard to draw the line of demarcation, and for the same reasons. Because of the second law of thermodynamics, life is seen as utilizing energy and increasing complexity, but again, that just isn't unique to life. It's hard not to see the conversion of four hydrogen atoms into one helium atom as similar, it utilizes energy and the resultant helium atom is more complex, and this pattern of utilizing energy and increasing complexity certainly applies to a chain of events of further increasing order and form, resulting in oxygen, carbon, iron, amino acids, nucleoproteins, and then biological systems, life, and man. Perhaps the distinguishing feature is the cell, all life is cellular in nature, nothing inorganic is composed of cells, but that's sort of a cop out because a cell is a living thing so that definition is somewhat circular.

Seen over the large-scale temporal dimensions that are required by the study of evolution, you have a continuous evolution from the big bang forward that makes it very hard to draw such lines of demarcation. Life involves a dynamic between an organism and its environment that even makes that demarcation difficult, it's difficult to even make a case for our existence as separate entities.

A whirlpool is something the river is doing, a whirlpool is not a separate thing made out of water, it's more like an outward form that water is passing through in time, rather than a thing it's a process or an action, and in the same way that a whirlpool is something the river is doing, a human being is something the universe is doing. With every breath I take, I am taking in and making a part of myself, the same material that was part of the plants around me, the same matter that flowed through a different whirlpool before me, and when I exhale I'm nourishing those same plants the way they nourished me. We are told that none of the atoms in me were there seven years ago; none of them will still be in me seven years from now. The universe is moving through us, the air we breath, the water we drink and the food we eat, the light we see, everything is just flowing right through us. We are a form or pattern, through which matter and energy flow, like whirlpool, through which water flows. We are an integral part of a vast interrelated process we call the web of life, life itself isn't a physical thing, it's more of a process or action, it's something the universe is doing. If you take it up another notch science says that physically we are made of stardust, cooked up in the center of giant stars eons ago, and we are just a localized epiphenomenon, a temporary complex form in a small section of the universe where entropy is decreasing because the sun is adding energy. We are a pattern of matter and energy, the complex atoms we are made up of were formed in the center of stars billions of years ago, from a strictly physical, scientific standpoint, we are continuous with everything else there is, and everything else that's going on, it not at all easy to see just where we end and the environment begins.

The law of cause and effect is foundational to science; it says that everything that is, existed in some attenuated way in that which came before. Words are symbols based upon agreed upon naming conventions, "tree" is an agreed upon word that symbolically represents a certain type of plant with certain characteristics that distinguish it from other plants, the type of tree that produces apples is called an apple tree. Let's also recognize that we don't come "into" this world, we grow out of this world, like an apple grows out of an apple tree,

If a tree that manifests apples is an apple tree, and if we wish to remain consistent with our normal naming conventions, then maybe it's more appropriate to see a universe that manifests life as a living universe, and since it is one that we grew out of then it is one that manifests intelligence and consciousness, so maybe we should be saying that the universe is an alive, intelligent, and conscious thing.
"It is one of the commonest of mistakes to consider that the limit of our power of perception is also the limit of all there is to perceive." " C. W. Leadbeater
The_Fool_on_the_hill
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8/6/2013 11:12:31 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
The Fool: Come on side walker or who's fooling who?

I know Alan Watts at the back of my hand. And you know, I know.

<(89)
"The bud disappears when the blossom breaks through, and we might say that the former is refuted by the latter; in the same way when the fruit comes, the blossom may be explained to be a false form of the plant's existence, for the fruit appears as its true nature in place of the blossom. These stages are not merely differentiated; they supplant one another as being incompatible with one another." G. W. F. HEGEL
The_Fool_on_the_hill
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8/6/2013 11:13:54 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
Fixed*
The Fool: Come on sidewalker or who's fooling who?

I know Alan Watts "like" the back of my hand. And you know, I know.

<(89)
"The bud disappears when the blossom breaks through, and we might say that the former is refuted by the latter; in the same way when the fruit comes, the blossom may be explained to be a false form of the plant's existence, for the fruit appears as its true nature in place of the blossom. These stages are not merely differentiated; they supplant one another as being incompatible with one another." G. W. F. HEGEL
v3nesl
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8/6/2013 11:57:55 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/5/2013 7:11:49 AM, Sidewalker wrote:
At 8/4/2013 7:48:09 PM, the_croftmeister wrote:
At 8/4/2013 7:43:36 PM, bossyburrito wrote:
What do you believe distinguishes the living from the nonliving? What does, say, a plant do that sets it apart from a rock?
Two things,
Reproduction: Creating more copies of itself.

Crystals do that all the time, the largest part of our inorganic environment was created by the process of crystals creating copies of themselves.

Self-preservation: Making internal changes to preserve its ability to reproduce.

Nope, that is not the distinction between life and non-life.

There are naturally forming units of matter, the hydrogen atom, ice crystals, protein molecules, are units whose form is organized within. They all show a tendency to protect themselves from dissolution and repair themselves from within when they have been disturbed or damaged. Such natural form building activities are occurring in all the time. Self-integrated units of matter with the tendency for self-preservation are in fact observed from the beginning of the creation of matter in the big bang.


No, not 'observed'. Speculated.

Let's take a simple example; in the sun we have a spontaneous reaction, four hydrogen atoms combine to create one helium atom, add up the total matter and it's slightly less, the excess matter was released in the form of heat, that's where the heat coming from the sun came from. But the resultant helium atom is a much more complex assembly, it is a whole that is more than the sum of its parts, it's more stable, it will in fact recover its form when damaged, and it possesses new "potentials". This potential resulting from the increase in order also begins a chain of events of further increasing order and form, resulting in oxygen, carbon, iron, amino acids, nucleoproteins, and then biological systems, life, man, and the aggregations of man into civilizations.


Again, speculation.

Throughout the world of inorganic matter we can see a natural tendency for the creation of self-organizing wholes to form.

'See', as in actually observe this? Where?

And I find this kind of talk to be metaphysical recklessness. When you fall off a ladder are you 'self organizing' with the earth? No, it's just the action of forces.

Recognizing that life emerged from a continuous process that began in the big bang

Again, there's no 'recognize' here as if this was observed or demonstrated science. It's just speculation. A.K.A. "wild assed guessing"
This space for rent.
The_Fool_on_the_hill
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8/6/2013 2:05:18 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/6/2013 11:57:55 AM, v3nesl wrote:
At 8/5/2013 7:11:49 AM, Sidewalker wrote:
At 8/4/2013 7:48:09 PM, the_croftmeister wrote:
At 8/4/2013 7:43:36 PM, bossyburrito wrote:
What do you believe distinguishes the living from the nonliving? What does, say, a plant do that sets it apart from a rock?
Two things,
Reproduction: Creating more copies of itself.

Crystals do that all the time, the largest part of our inorganic environment was created by the process of crystals creating copies of themselves.

Self-preservation: Making internal changes to preserve its ability to reproduce.

Nope, that is not the distinction between life and non-life.

There are naturally forming units of matter, the hydrogen atom, ice crystals, protein molecules, are units whose form is organized within. They all show a tendency to protect themselves from dissolution and repair themselves from within when they have been disturbed or damaged. Such natural form building activities are occurring in all the time. Self-integrated units of matter with the tendency for self-preservation are in fact observed from the beginning of the creation of matter in the big bang.


No, not 'observed'. Speculated.

Let's take a simple example; in the sun we have a spontaneous reaction, four hydrogen atoms combine to create one helium atom, add up the total matter and it's slightly less, the excess matter was released in the form of heat, that's where the heat coming from the sun came from. But the resultant helium atom is a much more complex assembly, it is a whole that is more than the sum of its parts, it's more stable, it will in fact recover its form when damaged, and it possesses new "potentials". This potential resulting from the increase in order also begins a chain of events of further increasing order and form, resulting in oxygen, carbon, iron, amino acids, nucleoproteins, and then biological systems, life, man, and the aggregations of man into civilizations.


Again, speculation.

Throughout the world of inorganic matter we can see a natural tendency for the creation of self-organizing wholes to form.

'See', as in actually observe this? Where?


And I find this kind of talk to be metaphysical recklessness. When you fall off a ladder are you 'self organizing' with the earth? No, it's just the action of forces.

Recognizing that life emerged from a continuous process that began in the big bang

Again, there's no 'recognize' here as if this was observed or demonstrated science. It's just speculation. A.K.A. "wild assed guessing"

The Fool: What you basing that on? Where did you see this?
"The bud disappears when the blossom breaks through, and we might say that the former is refuted by the latter; in the same way when the fruit comes, the blossom may be explained to be a false form of the plant's existence, for the fruit appears as its true nature in place of the blossom. These stages are not merely differentiated; they supplant one another as being incompatible with one another." G. W. F. HEGEL
v3nesl
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8/6/2013 2:51:49 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/6/2013 2:05:18 PM, The_Fool_on_the_hill wrote:
...

The Fool: What you basing that on? Where did you see this?

What are you asking, and who are you asking? Are you asking me to explain how I know we weren't there to observe the big bang?
This space for rent.
Sidewalker
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8/6/2013 3:11:42 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/6/2013 11:13:54 AM, The_Fool_on_the_hill wrote:
Fixed*
The Fool: Come on sidewalker or who's fooling who?

I know Alan Watts "like" the back of my hand. And you know, I know.

<(89)

So, do you have a point? I presume you are talking about my reference to his whirlpool metaphor, t's not the first time I've referenced that metaphor, probably won't be the last, it's a valid concept that applies to the discussion at hand. Alan Watts was a brilliant thinker, and I've always acknowledged that he was influential to my way of thinking, and you recognize his influence here, good for you, but that just isn't all that interesting, and I'm sure you spend a lot of time looking at the back of your hand, so I'm just not all that impressed. Nobody is trying to fool anybody, you are just doing what you do, being the fool.

Did you have something of substance to share, or is it just the same old troll?
"It is one of the commonest of mistakes to consider that the limit of our power of perception is also the limit of all there is to perceive." " C. W. Leadbeater
Sidewalker
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8/6/2013 3:28:16 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/6/2013 11:57:55 AM, v3nesl wrote:
At 8/5/2013 7:11:49 AM, Sidewalker wrote:
At 8/4/2013 7:48:09 PM, the_croftmeister wrote:
At 8/4/2013 7:43:36 PM, bossyburrito wrote:
What do you believe distinguishes the living from the nonliving? What does, say, a plant do that sets it apart from a rock?
Two things,
Reproduction: Creating more copies of itself.

Crystals do that all the time, the largest part of our inorganic environment was created by the process of crystals creating copies of themselves.

Self-preservation: Making internal changes to preserve its ability to reproduce.

Nope, that is not the distinction between life and non-life.

There are naturally forming units of matter, the hydrogen atom, ice crystals, protein molecules, are units whose form is organized within. They all show a tendency to protect themselves from dissolution and repair themselves from within when they have been disturbed or damaged. Such natural form building activities are occurring in all the time. Self-integrated units of matter with the tendency for self-preservation are in fact observed from the beginning of the creation of matter in the big bang.


No, not 'observed'. Speculated.

We observe this tendency in nature, from helium atoms to complex molecules to crystals to proteins, it's all around us. Do you reject physics too, you don't buy into Big Bang Cosmology?

Let's take a simple example; in the sun we have a spontaneous reaction, four hydrogen atoms combine to create one helium atom, add up the total matter and it's slightly less, the excess matter was released in the form of heat, that's where the heat coming from the sun came from. But the resultant helium atom is a much more complex assembly, it is a whole that is more than the sum of its parts, it's more stable, it will in fact recover its form when damaged, and it possesses new "potentials". This potential resulting from the increase in order also begins a chain of events of further increasing order and form, resulting in oxygen, carbon, iron, amino acids, nucleoproteins, and then biological systems, life, man, and the aggregations of man into civilizations.


Again, speculation.

Again, are you challenging the validity of physics?

Throughout the world of inorganic matter we can see a natural tendency for the creation of self-organizing wholes to form.

'See', as in actually observe this? Where?

Everywhere, the complexity of the world we live in demonstrates it, what exactly are you challenging here?

And I find this kind of talk to be metaphysical recklessness. When you fall off a ladder are you 'self organizing' with the earth? No, it's just the action of forces.

The action of forces that cause complex organizations of matter and energy, things do indeed hold together, I don't see how you can refute this contention.

Recognizing that life emerged from a continuous process that began in the big bang

Again, there's no 'recognize' here as if this was observed or demonstrated science. It's just speculation. A.K.A. "wild assed guessing"

It's the consensus opinion of science, hardly "wild assed guessing". Your ID position is based on seeing the complexity as necessitating intelligent design, it seems self-refuting to deny that matter is organized into complex arrangements, I'm not sure what you are arguing against here. Is it your contention that every organized assembly of matter and energy is irreducibly complex, from helium atoms on up, that we need to invoke an intelligent designer to have put together a helium atom?
"It is one of the commonest of mistakes to consider that the limit of our power of perception is also the limit of all there is to perceive." " C. W. Leadbeater
the_croftmeister
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8/6/2013 8:11:04 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/6/2013 4:13:38 AM, Sidewalker wrote:
At 8/5/2013 7:24:53 PM, the_croftmeister wrote:
Fair call, what would you say about an added complexity requirement to these two processes?

I'd say that's a step in the right direction, but it still makes it very hard to draw the line of demarcation, and for the same reasons.
I'm not sure why you need a hard line, a fuzzy one is surely just as good.

Because of the second law of thermodynamics, life is seen as utilizing energy and increasing complexity, but again, that just isn't unique to life.
I was actually talking about a requirement for a certain level of complexity in the organism itself, not an increase in complexity. Life does increase in complexity to a point, but I think what is more important is homeostasis, the ability to fight the march of the second law.

It's hard not to see the conversion of four hydrogen atoms into one helium atom as similar, it utilizes energy and the resultant helium atom is more complex, and this pattern of utilizing energy and increasing complexity certainly applies to a chain of events of further increasing order and form, resulting in oxygen, carbon, iron, amino acids, nucleoproteins, and then biological systems, life, and man.
I'm not convinced of this, Yes a hydrogen atom is less complex than a helium atom, but I'm not sure that the helium atom is necessarily more complex than the 4 hydrogen atom aggregate that becomes the helium atom.

Perhaps the distinguishing feature is the cell, all life is cellular in nature, nothing inorganic is composed of cells, but that's sort of a cop out because a cell is a living thing so that definition is somewhat circular.
Indeed, and would rule out plenty of things that I would still want to count.

Seen over the large-scale temporal dimensions that are required by the study of evolution, you have a continuous evolution from the big bang forward that makes it very hard to draw such lines of demarcation. Life involves a dynamic between an organism and its environment that even makes that demarcation difficult, it's difficult to even make a case for our existence as separate entities.

A whirlpool is something the river is doing, a whirlpool is not a separate thing made out of water, it's more like an outward form that water is passing through in time, rather than a thing it's a process or an action, and in the same way that a whirlpool is something the river is doing, a human being is something the universe is doing. With every breath I take, I am taking in and making a part of myself, the same material that was part of the plants around me, the same matter that flowed through a different whirlpool before me, and when I exhale I'm nourishing those same plants the way they nourished me. We are told that none of the atoms in me were there seven years ago; none of them will still be in me seven years from now. The universe is moving through us, the air we breath, the water we drink and the food we eat, the light we see, everything is just flowing right through us. We are a form or pattern, through which matter and energy flow, like whirlpool, through which water flows. We are an integral part of a vast interrelated process we call the web of life, life itself isn't a physical thing, it's more of a process or action, it's something the universe is doing. If you take it up another notch science says that physically we are made of stardust, cooked up in the center of giant stars eons ago, and we are just a localized epiphenomenon, a temporary complex form in a small section of the universe where entropy is decreasing because the sun is adding energy. We are a pattern of matter and energy, the complex atoms we are made up of were formed in the center of stars billions of years ago, from a strictly physical, scientific standpoint, we are continuous with everything else there is, and everything else that's going on, it not at all easy to see just where we end and the environment begins.
I'd say you are correct on this one, though I'm not sure on the relevance to the question, I have argued exactly this point in the consciousness discussion. However, definitions are useful. Mostly because they allow us to pretend that the demarcation is there. But a fuzzy one is still a demarcation, it just doesn't have a hard line. Are you warning against assuming that a hard line can be drawn? Or are you saying that attempts to come up with a classification here will inevitably be wrong?

The law of cause and effect is foundational to science; it says that everything that is, existed in some attenuated way in that which came before. Words are symbols based upon agreed upon naming conventions, "tree" is an agreed upon word that symbolically represents a certain type of plant with certain characteristics that distinguish it from other plants, the type of tree that produces apples is called an apple tree. Let's also recognize that we don't come "into" this world, we grow out of this world, like an apple grows out of an apple tree,
I disagree with this, cause and effect are not necessary for science. The validity of approximations and the occurrence of repeating patterns are.

If a tree that manifests apples is an apple tree, and if we wish to remain consistent with our normal naming conventions, then maybe it's more appropriate to see a universe that manifests life as a living universe, and since it is one that we grew out of then it is one that manifests intelligence and consciousness, so maybe we should be saying that the universe is an alive, intelligent, and conscious thing.
I'm not sure this is actually consistent with our conventions. Even though the cells in the human body can live for hours after the death of the organism as a whole we don't say that the human is still alive until they are all dead.
cybertron1998
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8/6/2013 8:13:31 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/4/2013 8:43:54 PM, AnDoctuir wrote:
At 8/4/2013 8:43:17 PM, bossyburrito wrote:
At 8/4/2013 8:30:55 PM, AnDoctuir wrote:
Figured I might have inspired your question. I mean, otherwise it's just the 7 characteristics of life, no? :P

Uh, what seven characteristics?

http://infohost.nmt.edu...

that doesn't dictate life
Epsilon: There are so many stories where some brave hero decides to give their life to save the day, and because of their sacrifice, the good guys win, the survivors all cheer, and everybody lives happily ever after. But the hero... never gets to see that ending. They'll never know if their sacrifice actually made a difference. They'll never know if the day was really saved. In the end, they just have to have faith.
AnDoctuir
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8/6/2013 8:14:22 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/6/2013 8:13:31 PM, cybertron1998 wrote:
At 8/4/2013 8:43:54 PM, AnDoctuir wrote:
At 8/4/2013 8:43:17 PM, bossyburrito wrote:
At 8/4/2013 8:30:55 PM, AnDoctuir wrote:
Figured I might have inspired your question. I mean, otherwise it's just the 7 characteristics of life, no? :P

Uh, what seven characteristics?

http://infohost.nmt.edu...

that doesn't dictate life

Transformers, bro?
cybertron1998
Posts: 5,818
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8/6/2013 8:15:24 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/6/2013 8:14:22 PM, AnDoctuir wrote:
At 8/6/2013 8:13:31 PM, cybertron1998 wrote:
At 8/4/2013 8:43:54 PM, AnDoctuir wrote:
At 8/4/2013 8:43:17 PM, bossyburrito wrote:
At 8/4/2013 8:30:55 PM, AnDoctuir wrote:
Figured I might have inspired your question. I mean, otherwise it's just the 7 characteristics of life, no? :P

Uh, what seven characteristics?

http://infohost.nmt.edu...

that doesn't dictate life

Transformers, bro?

no various creatures throughout media, petrosapiens aka diamond head or chromastone for ben 10 no organs
Epsilon: There are so many stories where some brave hero decides to give their life to save the day, and because of their sacrifice, the good guys win, the survivors all cheer, and everybody lives happily ever after. But the hero... never gets to see that ending. They'll never know if their sacrifice actually made a difference. They'll never know if the day was really saved. In the end, they just have to have faith.
v3nesl
Posts: 4,494
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8/7/2013 7:54:13 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/6/2013 3:28:16 PM, Sidewalker wrote:
...

We observe this tendency in nature, from helium atoms to complex molecules to crystals to proteins, it's all around us. Do you reject physics too, you don't buy into Big Bang Cosmology?

I certainly am suspicious of putting a metaphysical interpretation on relatively simple physical phenomena. Unions organize; crystals, not so much.

As for big bang cosmology, I merely pointed out that it's speculation, not something observed. It may be complete nonsense, the story that is told today. You have to be really careful about building some grand story out of blocks that are individually speculative.


Let's take a simple example; in the sun we have a spontaneous reaction, four hydrogen atoms combine to create one helium atom, add up the total matter and it's slightly less, the excess matter was released in the form of heat, that's where the heat coming from the sun came from. But the resultant helium atom is a much more complex assembly, it is a whole that is more than the sum of its parts, it's more stable, it will in fact recover its form when damaged, and it possesses new "potentials". This potential resulting from the increase in order also begins a chain of events of further increasing order and form, resulting in oxygen, carbon, iron, amino acids, nucleoproteins, and then biological systems, life, man, and the aggregations of man into civilizations.


Again, speculation.

Again, are you challenging the validity of physics?

Did I highlight the wrong part, maybe? You extrapolate civilization as the necessary result of the formation of helium? You really think that's physics???


Throughout the world of inorganic matter we can see a natural tendency for the creation of self-organizing wholes to form.

'See', as in actually observe this? Where?

Everywhere, the complexity of the world we live in demonstrates it, what exactly are you challenging here?

So you can't give an example? Seems to me you're begging the question here, your only foundation is this highly mythopoeic version of physics. I don't agree that life is self organizing, so you can't use life as your evidence.


And I find this kind of talk to be metaphysical recklessness. When you fall off a ladder are you 'self organizing' with the earth? No, it's just the action of forces.

The action of forces that cause complex organizations of matter and energy, things do indeed hold together, I don't see how you can refute this contention.


I don't deny gravity or the weak force, etc. But as I say, I don't see falling off a ladder as being particularly complex.

Recognizing that life emerged from a continuous process that began in the big bang

Again, there's no 'recognize' here as if this was observed or demonstrated science. It's just speculation. A.K.A. "wild assed guessing"

It's the consensus opinion of science, hardly "wild assed guessing".

Ummmm, getting a lot of people to share a guess doesn't make it anything other than a guess. It might be a good guess, might be an absolutely correct guess, but a guess is a guess, and not [yet] science.

Your ID position is based on seeing the complexity as necessitating intelligent design,

I see design as requiring design. The difficulty of formalizing the metrics of design doesn't alter the fact that life looks designed.

I guess the other half of that is what I call the "pro athlete problem" - that when you are extremely good you make it look easy, and this ease has led to absurdly underweight theories like evolution. Also, as a professional designer of complex equipment, I see that what people consider defects in life are due to a lack of understanding of the principle of 'trade offs', that in a deterministic world of physics you cannot simultaneously do everything well.

it seems self-refuting to deny that matter is organized into complex arrangements, I'm not sure what you are arguing against here.

Where there is organization, there must be an organizer. 'Organize' is a metaphysical term, it requires a pattern not inherent in the elements themselves. Really - if you want to call something organized, then there is an organizer. Otherwise it just falls off a ladder, and this is how it lands. One must be careful with language - if you mean to exclude intelligence, then exclude intelligence words.

Is it your contention that every organized assembly of matter and energy is irreducibly complex,

IC is something different - IC is the observation that machines require certain things to be simultaneous. You can't have a lever without both a stick and a rock, to use about the simplest example possible. You can have a stick or a fulcrum doing other things, but you cannot have a lever until you have both at once.

from helium atoms on up, that we need to invoke an intelligent designer to have put together a helium atom?

Possibly we do. Are you open to that possibility, or do you have an emotional distaste for that possibility?
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Graincruncher
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8/7/2013 10:26:57 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/7/2013 7:54:13 AM, v3nesl wrote:
So you can't give an example? Seems to me you're begging the question here, your only foundation is this highly mythopoeic version of physics. I don't agree that life is self organizing, so you can't use life as your evidence.

Then you are begging the question, because you've already decided that life is designed and are using that as the basis for that concluding life is designed. That isn't an argument. It isn't even a meaningful statement.

I don't deny gravity or the weak force, etc. But as I say, I don't see falling off a ladder as being particularly complex.

Then you should give it more thought. What happens when someone falls off a ladder and why is this not complex?

I see design as requiring design. The difficulty of formalizing the metrics of design doesn't alter the fact that life looks designed.

Aforementioned presupposition that leads to a circular - and therefore useless - argument.

Where there is organization, there must be an organizer. 'Organize' is a metaphysical term, it requires a pattern not inherent in the elements themselves. Really - if you want to call something organized, then there is an organizer. Otherwise it just falls off a ladder, and this is how it lands. One must be careful with language - if you mean to exclude intelligence, then exclude intelligence words.

Organisation is a property we use to describe systemic relationships between elements. In that sense, everything is organised. Arranged. Structured. Whichever you prefer. But the only person reading 'organised' as 'deliberately organised', so far as I can see, is you. Crystals most certainly self-organise, since their structure follows a set of rules which dictate the organisation of the component molecules. That is to say, their structural relationship relative to one another.

So yes, one must be careful with language. Which raises the question of why you aren't being so.

IC is something different - IC is the observation that machines require certain things to be simultaneous. You can't have a lever without both a stick and a rock, to use about the simplest example possible. You can have a stick or a fulcrum doing other things, but you cannot have a lever until you have both at once.

Very neatly destroying the argument for Irreducible Complexity there. I have to say, I'm surprised. Well done.
v3nesl
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8/7/2013 2:21:50 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/7/2013 10:26:57 AM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 8/7/2013 7:54:13 AM, v3nesl wrote:
So you can't give an example? Seems to me you're begging the question here, your only foundation is this highly mythopoeic version of physics. I don't agree that life is self organizing, so you can't use life as your evidence.

Then you are begging the question, because you've already decided that life is designed and are using that as the basis for that concluding life is designed. That isn't an argument. It isn't even a meaningful statement.

I don't deny gravity or the weak force, etc. But as I say, I don't see falling off a ladder as being particularly complex.

Then you should give it more thought. What happens when someone falls off a ladder and why is this not complex?

Well, if you don't care to distinguish between landing a 747 and falling off a ladder, you don't need to worry about 'complex' or 'skill' or any of that fancy stuff. If you do care, then you should think it through, come up with some useful metrics, then we'll work with whatever you come up with.


I see design as requiring design. The difficulty of formalizing the metrics of design doesn't alter the fact that life looks designed.

Aforementioned presupposition that leads to a circular - and therefore useless - argument.

Except that there is design, there is intentional, there is accidental, etc. You can win a court case with this kind of game, but you can't discover anything useful about reality.


Where there is organization, there must be an organizer. 'Organize' is a metaphysical term, it requires a pattern not inherent in the elements themselves. Really - if you want to call something organized, then there is an organizer. Otherwise it just falls off a ladder, and this is how it lands. One must be careful with language - if you mean to exclude intelligence, then exclude intelligence words.

Organisation is a property we use to describe systemic relationships between elements. In that sense, everything is organised.

So then, 'organized' doesn't mean anything. Again, find us a word that does mean something to you, I'll try to work with it.

IC is something different - IC is the observation that machines require certain things to be simultaneous. You can't have a lever without both a stick and a rock, to use about the simplest example possible. You can have a stick or a fulcrum doing other things, but you cannot have a lever until you have both at once.

Very neatly destroying the argument for Irreducible Complexity there. I have to say, I'm surprised. Well done.

No, I think you suffer from the usual confusion - you conflate the definition of IC with it's use as an argument for design. The fact that elements may serve other functions does not negate the argument. As Behe wryly pointed out, most anything can be used as a paperweight. But if you want a mousetrap, the only ones you'll ever find come from a factory. Your post is a prime example of real world vs head games.
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