From chaos to minds (was Re: Military in or out?)

From: Gordon Worley (
Date: Tue Feb 27 2001 - 22:41:54 MST

At 8:52 PM -0500 2/27/01, Mark Walker wrote:
> > Eliezer wrote:
>> > The initial conditions for humans are too complex and too
> > > constant for us to draw that conclusion about minds in general.

But we do have enough data to make conclusions about the universe (at
least this part of it) in general, which minds are a part of and
must, therefore, conform to. More below.

>If life always emerges out of chaos still we would need further
>proof that it is always life like the stuff on
>earth--e.g., carbon based. So if minds always emerge we would still need
>further proof that they are like the ones on earth.

A valid point, but ...

>All that we can conclude
>about minds in general, from the fact that humans think like this, is that
>one species of minds in general think like this. To conclude anything else
>is to go beyond the data. (Deja-vu of course for students of German

... when dealing with the future, one must always extrapolate. Not
only in minds, but in general we see that there is emergent behavior.
Even outside of living systems there is emergent behavior. If you
look at crystels, they contain complex patterns that develop out of a
few ridges. On a much larger scale, planets organize themsleves into
systems around stars and stars organize into galaxies and galaxies
into clusters and so on. When we look at the universe, it always
grows to levels of more and more order. From this, it would be
reasonable to state that minds will always emerge and that they will
likely work the way they do on Earth. Why? For the same reason that
stars in one galaxy behave the same way as those in another:
symmetry. Unless symmetry is proven to be broken in some way, all
minds will eventually work the same way (though the intermediary
steps may vary a bit). Personally, I doubt that symmetry would bend
for something like the mind, which is just much better organized
matter, when it has proven ridge with unorganized and somewhat
organized matter.

Gordon Worley
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