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Causality, for those of you who don't know, is a fancy idea that relies on the idea of cause-and-effect. Every cause must have an affect, and therefore it makes sense that every effect must have a cause? Right? Right?! NO!
Why not? Let me use an example...
Q: Why am I writing this post?
A: Because I'm sleep-deprived and stimulated!
Q: Why am I sleep deprived?
A: Because I didn't get enough sleep.
Q: Why didn't I get enough sleep?
A: Because Skyrim is WAAAY to addictive for its own good.
Q: Why is Skyrim addictive?
...bla bla bla...
Q: Aha! But why does the universe exist at all?
A: Because of the Big Bang
Q: What caused the Big Bang?
Which leads us to the problem! If every effect must have a cause, and every cause is just the effect of another cause, then we get an infinite regress, a never-ending paradox. So what's the answer?
Well, the most popular answer is that there was a "Primary Cause", or an "Unmoved Mover" which exists outside of this law, which simply.... always existed. Some people say that this is God. Other people say that the universe always existed in some way, shape or form. Still others have girlfriends, and go to parties on weekends.
I fall squarely into the middle group! But I want to know your thoughts on this? Does the argument of causality prove there is a God? Does it prove that there is no god? Is it a pointless argument altogether?
[Edit] Whoa! I'm finally at "retired" status. Come to think of it, I think I only made 3 or 4 posts and a full-blown FTV Team Member...
"I know. Yes, I know we all go away." - Devin Townsend!
I thought that Causality was more along the line of explaining the cause and effect of things that happen in Life, the Universe, and Everything, and no I'm not talking about the answer 42 here.
In any case I'm highly reminded of one scene from Fate/hollow ataraxia, which was the fight scene between Bazzet and Lancer. It bluntly described that if Lancer did kill Bazzet with his special attack he would die as well. Granted it's not the great arguement for this thread but it's the one that comes to mind for me since it is about the idea of Causality here.
Pretty much you could use Causality to probablly not only prove that God exisits but how he doesn't exist. Although there is one problem Causaity can explain the cause and effect of things, but that's if people took notice of it there, but if no one took notice then it couldn't be explained.
Pretty much to prove and disprove things you pretty much need to know what a Devil's Proof is along with Hempel's Raven is for something like the God arguement though.
On a side note about your Retired Status, it might be becuase you weren't as active all this time here. Pretty much talk to Maiku-sama, or daft-sama about it.
Well causality is a tenet in many disciplines. In my field of public policy we look at why certain ideas stick and go on to form policies. For example, what is the causality of poverty, sedantry or structural etc etc. Judging how you view the causality/problem will determine the policy to solve it.
In the context of this thread, if your looking for the primary cause of everything well then like the OP suggests it is not bound by the laws of physics as we know it. I maintain that there must be a metaphysical force governing what we constitue as the universe. The problem I have with the big bang theory is can something be created from nothing. Can gases appear from nowhere and create life as we know it? Can you actually fathom something coming about from nothing? I cant. And I think right there is the limit of human knowledge. A british scientist named Brian Cox who worked on the Hallidron Collider said that when facing those questions he believes that the universe has always been there in some form. If that is the case, semantics asides then effectively the universe is his god. Barring biblical texts and code of conduct, all religions that believe in God, will agree that God is the creator. If the universe created the big bang then that is god. If there is an omnipotent being that created the big bang (if god is timeless, seven days to create the earth is figurative as the billions of years it took to create the universe could pass by in the blink of an eye or what we know as a week) then that is god.
To be honest it is quite an arbitrary discussion since you can neither quantify or qualify any claims made. For example, the ending to the Men in Black film might be right. We may be in a universe in a universe in a universe.... in yep you guess it another universe. The only real thing that I want to know is there a place where time doesnt exist? Despite the fact that time as we know it is not real. I can not fathom a place or something that did not have a beginning and an end. If such a place exist, then im sure somewhere there in that realm is the ineluctable cause of everything because such a thing is absolute.
"If you truly love something, the most romantic thing you can do is kill it"
Best superhero show ever!
Ah, this reminds me of a conversation I had with a friend the other day... We were talking about the butterfly effect and I went into an explanation of causality and why you wouldn't change anything while time traveling to the past because while from your perspective you're making your own decisions, in the grand pasta bowl of the universe, you'll "just make the same decisions as last time" because all of the environmental factors are the same.
I think one of the common flaws of causality is the assumption that it's linear. As with my pasta bowl comment, I don't think the universe moves forward. or backwards. I think it's one giant, twisted up, tangled mess of a gordian knot of pasta. Something must cause an effect, but that something isn't necessarily in order.
Consider the concept of prophecy vs self-fulfilling prophecy. A self-fulfilling prophecy obviously has cause->effect, but can a prophecy be said to have it's cause after it's effect? After all, the idea of a prophecy is a prediction, so does it go effect <- cause, against the grain of time? The prophecy isn't the cause... it's the effect. (For the sake of the example, we'll assume a "True" prophecy as opposed to Nostradamus style "I throw generalities in your general direction, ha!" which is an entirely different subject.)
This introduces the weird question: was the universe created in response to a cause in the future?
We'll never know. Unless of course we're Okarin.
What is mind? No matter. What is matter? Never mind.
My head hurts after reading this thread.
This post has been edited by ChrisRich on Feb 16 2012, 01:47 PM
The question of causality reminds me of the meaning of life question, which leads to the 'never-ending story' or Big Bang of creation as creator exploring itself, a process of self-discovery. The alpha/omega... the beginning is the end and vice-versa, only we experience but a very slim slice of the pie... imagine how much more of our physical existence we would experience if all that 'junk' DNA was turned on instead of off? This gets into hyperdimensional issues of higher 'densities' of self-conscious awareness. That is what the 'ascension' is all about... the 'awakening' within oneself of self-awareness in which you start connecting your conscious mind to your subconscious mind which is always connected to the unconscious of All that Is, or 'God'. One step at a time as in the film 'Contact'.
Remember the saying from Shakespeare that "all the worlds a play and each must play their part"? That's fine for the average Joe or Jane, but once you start asking these questions, then you reach the deeper saying that "It's all a dream, but you are the dream, you are the dreamer." Or in other words, the creation is the creator and the creator is the creation, and the more 'in touch' or aware you become, the more connected you become... the more 'god-like' as in anime with all the superpowers, mystical or time travel issues so often explored these days, mostly from a physical perspective and not a ethereal/nonphysical one. That lead actor in 'Glee' said something like this in an old NPR interview, about how 'the more you live in the mind, the less you live in the body', which changes everything. Your entire perspective changes and it all starts to make sense, and you find your way into esoteric issues based here and now in the CHOICE. Once awakened, the need to choose one side of the 'fence' over the other becomes ever more apparent, or as put in Harry Potter on how it is our choices that determine who and what we are.
I liked one wise old man who said we live in one dimension of 'Purgatory'. In the Matrix film, we are each potentially Neo only no one will awaken us but ourself... remember the old saying, "You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink'? We are in a DNA established prison in which we have to discover a way out, but to do so, we first have to awaken to realize that we are in a prison to begin with. Causality is in play here, as the real 'game' in creation is said to be one over consciousness, that is the 'money' of Reality, everything else is just steps in that simple realization. Where you go from here is infinite and eternal, as the alpha/omega point is the same... All is One... remember that line from the film 'Highlander'? "In the end, there can be only one."
It is said that the very, very few thousand that 'ascend' to the next level out of this prison or Purgatory will find themselves in a 4d world, sort of like a anime character come to life in our 3d world. Causality comes into play as the entirety of this 'game' of creation is said to be simultaneous, only not from our limited DNA perspective, but rather from those from the alpha/omega point in 7d... where light is created as thought takes form in the lower levels. We exist in a theological reality construct which has history repeating itself until we 'awaken' and realize the need to choose which path to leave by... which 'exit' door, which side of the 'Force' using the Star Wars analogy, the 'dark' side or the light?
Those in control of our life here in Purgatory or Eden after the dark side took over per our choice to live in the physical domains of the 3rd density of awareness, have changed our DNA to maintain us like sheep, thus the biblical analogies along with all the parables by that Jesus dude. We are sheep until we learn to become shepherds for our own souls. Simple and ever so complex, but if it was simple any fool could do it and the power of creation is only for those that can learn to handle the burden/duty/honor. You can see this throughout most literature/film/tv/anime etc. The Hero's Journey. The Dark Night of the Soul. The Way of the Fool. The Quest. The Chosen Ones. The Holy Grail. The Philosopher's Stone. The True Alchemy of Oneself.
The next level of this 'game' is said to be 4th density awareness in which time travel and the creation of other dimensions is the norm. The planet is preparing to give birth to its 4d self with or without us. It's EM field is already preparing to change as the various cosmic players swing on in: our dark companion star (brown dwarf), the comet cluster that follows and leads to our next ice age in 3d and Day After Tomorrow effects of the planetary transition. Those that transcend will have a different DNA setup that allows teleportation within this field and through time as well, backwards and forward at will, as it is the WILL that matters most. The development of one's inner potential as 'creator'. Learning to access the infinite potential within that starts with these types of questions. Seek and ye shall find. Many are called, few answer.... but that call is always there for when we are ready to hear, when we get sick and tired or just plain bored of this repetition and choose to exit. It is said that this causality is forever in flux as those in control of our domain are continuously going back in time to tweek events more to their liking, so that when the time of transition comes (2014 it is said for main event - 'wave' or realm border crossing, think dimensional/density curtain), they will stay in charge, in control. All the crap in our lives is because of this desire by the 'dark side' to maintain control here and now, which is also the past, present and future as one affects all others simultaneously.... learning to think outside the basic 3d physical plane then allows a much wider perspective in which causality is seen as merely the ties that bind us to our limited frame of reference. Breaking these ties or limits on our thoughts allows us to think beyond the norm... sort of 'magical' like, thus all the uses in anime, films etc.
That 'butterfly effect' or thousandth monkey effect is the affect one entity can possibly have on the whole... be it a tribe, a race, human or other, the affect one consciousness can have on the whole, which can be 'bad' or 'good', which is a matter of innate desire. Different strokes for different folks. They have used this principle in a few commercials recently showing the hidden affect that can ripple through the mass mind, one mind at a time, you never know when nor where, but when that mathematical nexus is reached, it quickly expands to the whole tribe.
"Intelligent design' is more in keeping with the principles of morphogenetic imprinting that Rupert Sheldrake thought of. Those 'universes' mentioned seem more to be dimensions that exist in multitude within the densities that are separated by one's level of conscious awareness, one's ability to 'see the unseen' nature of our Real World. The overwhelming majority of people are mere sheep, not ready to yet open their eyes, and thereby not ready to participate in the larger 'game' of creation, wherein we are each butterflies affecting each other, as in truth we are but One... but that is a realization made much later after the Choice has been made and empowered to propel us in the direction of our choosing, the path of our future, which is in the omniverse of past, present and future, as when one travels in time, the physical takes on a different perspective, until it is lost completely in the higher densities wherein our deeper subconscious resides and attempts to communicate to us at night in our sleep through the use of symbolism usually, attempting to get our caterpillar selfs to awaken and rise out of our shells to become butterflies.
And we come forever back to causality and how all is connected in time and space, it is just our lack of perception that limits our ability to see those strings that tie us all together for better or for worse.