// Required code

Announcement

Collapse

Philosophy 201 Guidelines

Cogito ergo sum

Here in the Philosophy forum we will talk about all the "why" questions. We'll have conversations about the way in which philosophy and theology and religion interact with each other. Metaphysics, ontology, origins, truth? They're all fair game so jump right in and have some fun! But remember...play nice!

Forum Rules: Here
See more
See less

Infinity and Kalam

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Infinity and Kalam

    Actual infinites are metaphysically impossible.

    An infinite regress of equal, arbitrary, finite, non-zero events is an actual infinite.

    There can't be a regress of this kind into the past.

    The past had a beginning.

    Something had to cause the beginning.

    Q.E.D. That's something that everyone would call 'God'.
    Many and painful are the researches sometimes necessary to be made, for settling points of [this] kind. Pertness and ignorance may ask a question in three lines, which it will cost learning and ingenuity thirty pages to answer. When this is done, the same question shall be triumphantly asked again the next year, as if nothing had ever been written upon the subject.
    George Horne

  • #2
    Originally posted by mattbballman31 View Post
    Actual infinites are metaphysically impossible.

    An infinite regress of equal, arbitrary, finite, non-zero events is an actual infinite.

    There can't be a regress of this kind into the past.

    The past had a beginning.

    Something had to cause the beginning.

    Q.E.D. That's something that everyone would call 'God'.
    Going all the way back to Aristotle there are two distinct 'infinities:' Actual Infinities and Potential Infinities.
    Aristotle's potential–actual distinction

    Source: https://www.google.com/search?q=potential+infinity+vs+actual+infinity&oq=potential+infinity&aqs=chrome.1.69i57j0l7.14758j0j15&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8


    He distinguished between actual and potential infinity. Actual infinity is completed and definite, and consists of infinitely many elements. Potential infinity is never complete: elements can be always added, but never infinitely many.

    Also . . .

    According to Aristotle, actual infinities cannot exist because they are paradoxical. ... Aristotle argued that actual infinity as it is not applicable to geometry and the UNIVERSAL, is not relevant to mathematics, making potential infinity all that actually is important.

    © Copyright Original Source



    By definition Actual Infinites are complete, and cannot limit nor negate potential infinities. Our physical existence is 'Potentially Infinite,' because no matter how far we can conceptual ize a limit to our physical existence there can always be something or a time further beyond what we can conceive. The problems of the above assertions also have other problems. Actual Infinities and Potential are human math constructs, tools of math, and are not descriptive of the limits of anything. Science cannot falsify whether our physical existence is infinite or eternal, nor finite nor temporal.
    Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
    Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
    But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

    go with the flow the river knows . . .

    Frank

    I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by mattbballman31 View Post
      Actual infinites are metaphysically impossible.
      What makes you think that actual infinites are metaphysically impossible?

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Stoic View Post
        What makes you think that actual infinites are metaphysically impossible?
        Actually 'actual infinities' are metaphysically meaningless.
        Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
        Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
        But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

        go with the flow the river knows . . .

        Frank

        I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

        Comment


        • #5
          The Lalam argument is a related claim from an ancient limited perspective. I have an interesting counter argument to the Kalam argument.

          Let us suppose that the infinite series of hotels are empty. Now try and fill them.
          Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
          Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
          But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

          go with the flow the river knows . . .

          Frank

          I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by mattbballman31 View Post
            Actual infinites are metaphysically impossible.

            An infinite regress of equal, arbitrary, finite, non-zero events is an actual infinite.

            There can't be a regress of this kind into the past.

            The past had a beginning.

            Something had to cause the beginning.

            Q.E.D. That's something that everyone would call 'God'.
            And what makes you think the cause for the beginning would be 'God'?
            Last edited by crepuscule; 08-31-2020, 01:06 AM.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by shunyadragon View Post
              Actually 'actual infinities' are metaphysically meaningless.
              Okay, why are actual infinities metaphysically meaningless?

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by mattbballman31 View Post
                Actual infinites are metaphysically impossible.

                An infinite regress of equal, arbitrary, finite, non-zero events is an actual infinite.

                There can't be a regress of this kind into the past.

                The past had a beginning.

                Something had to cause the beginning.

                Q.E.D. That's something that everyone would call 'God'.
                I wouldn't call it 'God'.

                There are other flaws in your argument, but that one is the most obvious.
                Jorge: Functional Complex Information is INFORMATION that is complex and functional.

                mikewhitney: What if the speed of light changed when light is passing through water? ... I have 3 semesters of college Physics.

                Mountain Man: First of all, the Bible is a fixed document.
                Mountain Man: … this is how liberals argue these days, with labels instead of ideas.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Stoic View Post
                  Okay, why are actual infinities metaphysically meaningless?
                  Actual infinities are math construct: First, Metaphysical claims are subjective concerning infinites, Second going back to what I cited from Aristotle actual infinites (closed infinites) cannot define the limits of potential infinitiy. Third, their only practical use in the real is defining closed infinities as in the radioactive decay of minerals like Uranium to Leead. Fourth, there is no falsifiable hypothesis that our physical existence nor anything else is potentially infinte.
                  Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
                  Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
                  But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

                  go with the flow the river knows . . .

                  Frank

                  I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by shunyadragon View Post
                    Actual infinities are math construct: First, Metaphysical claims are subjective concerning infinites, Second going back to what I cited from Aristotle actual infinites (closed infinites) cannot define the limits of potential infinitiy. Third, their only practical use in the real is defining closed infinities as in the radioactive decay of minerals like Uranium to Leead. Fourth, there is no falsifiable hypothesis that our physical existence nor anything else is potentially infinte.
                    I'm more concerned with claims that the extent of time and space cannot be an actual infinite.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Stoic View Post
                      I'm more concerned with claims that the extent of time and space cannot be an actual infinite.
                      The actual conclusions, as cited by Aristotle, and since is that actual infinites are simply human constructs of math as tools of science, nothing more.

                      The belief 'that time and space cannot be infinite and eternal, because of the limits of actual infinities,' is what I call a product of 'probabilism' thinking. Look it up. I may address this in more detail as the nature of many Theist claims.
                      Last edited by shunyadragon; 09-01-2020, 12:05 PM.
                      Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
                      Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
                      But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

                      go with the flow the river knows . . .

                      Frank

                      I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by shunyadragon View Post
                        The actual conclusions, as cited by Aristotle, and since is that actual infinites are simply human constructs of math as tools of science, nothing more.

                        The belief 'that time and space cannot be infinite and eternal, because of the limits of actual infinities,' is what I call a product of 'probabilism' thinking. Look it up. I may address this in more detail as the nature of many Theist claims.
                        Ironic, because probabilism seems pretty reasonable to me, but the belief that time and space cannot possibly be infinite and eternal does not.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by shunyadragon View Post
                          Going all the way back to Aristotle there are two distinct 'infinities:' Actual Infinities and Potential Infinities.
                          Aristotle's potential–actual distinction

                          Source: https://www.google.com/search?q=potential+infinity+vs+actual+infinity&oq=potential+infinity&aqs=chrome.1.69i57j0l7.14758j0j15&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8


                          He distinguished between actual and potential infinity. Actual infinity is completed and definite, and consists of infinitely many elements. Potential infinity is never complete: elements can be always added, but never infinitely many.

                          Also . . .

                          According to Aristotle, actual infinities cannot exist because they are paradoxical. ... Aristotle argued that actual infinity as it is not applicable to geometry and the UNIVERSAL, is not relevant to mathematics, making potential infinity all that actually is important.

                          © Copyright Original Source



                          By definition Actual Infinites are complete, and cannot limit nor negate potential infinities. Our physical existence is 'Potentially Infinite,' because no matter how far we can conceptual ize a limit to our physical existence there can always be something or a time further beyond what we can conceive.
                          Yep. I don't disagree with any of this. I said, "An infinite regress of equal, arbitrary, finite, non-zero events is an actual infinite." That's an actual infinite. I'm not talking about a dynamic, growing potentially infinite series of events extending into the past. It's being supposed to be actually infinite for reductio.

                          The problems of the above assertions also have other problems. Actual Infinities and Potential are human math constructs, tools of math, and are not descriptive of the limits of anything.
                          If the past is beginningless, the events of the past could be put into a one-to-one correspondence with the series of natural numbers. That would make it an actual infinite. Stipulate that the events are equal, arbitrary, finite, and non-zero. Call them, say, hours, or years, or seconds. If the series of such intervals can't be an actual infinite, neither can the past series of events under any of the relevant, stipulated descriptions.

                          Science cannot falsify whether our physical existence is infinite or eternal, nor finite nor temporal.
                          I'm not talking about science. I'm not talking about metaphysics.
                          Many and painful are the researches sometimes necessary to be made, for settling points of [this] kind. Pertness and ignorance may ask a question in three lines, which it will cost learning and ingenuity thirty pages to answer. When this is done, the same question shall be triumphantly asked again the next year, as if nothing had ever been written upon the subject.
                          George Horne

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Stoic View Post
                            What makes you think that actual infinites are metaphysically impossible?
                            Hilbert's Hotel, Infinite Library cases, Tristram Shandy paradoxes, the impossibility of counting to/from infinity, Grim Reaper paradoxes, Benedarte's paradox of the gods, Benedarte's Peals Case, Al-Ghazali's Rotating Planets, Thompson's Lamp, Marble Shifter Case, etc . . .
                            Many and painful are the researches sometimes necessary to be made, for settling points of [this] kind. Pertness and ignorance may ask a question in three lines, which it will cost learning and ingenuity thirty pages to answer. When this is done, the same question shall be triumphantly asked again the next year, as if nothing had ever been written upon the subject.
                            George Horne

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by crepuscule View Post
                              And what makes you think the cause for the beginning would be 'God'?
                              A spaceless, timeless, immaterial, personal, powerful, intelligent agent would constitute a set of properties of a substance whose definite description picks out that Being that only God could exemplify. That conjunction of properties could only be jointly exemplified by God.
                              Many and painful are the researches sometimes necessary to be made, for settling points of [this] kind. Pertness and ignorance may ask a question in three lines, which it will cost learning and ingenuity thirty pages to answer. When this is done, the same question shall be triumphantly asked again the next year, as if nothing had ever been written upon the subject.
                              George Horne

                              Comment

                              Related Threads

                              Collapse

                              Topics Statistics Last Post
                              Started by Diogenes, 10-10-2020, 08:38 PM
                              8 responses
                              76 views
                              0 likes
                              Last Post Sparko
                              by Sparko
                               
                              Started by Andius, 10-07-2020, 07:38 PM
                              9 responses
                              60 views
                              0 likes
                              Last Post siam
                              by siam
                               
                              Started by mattbballman31, 08-26-2020, 11:42 AM
                              23 responses
                              474 views
                              0 likes
                              Last Post shunyadragon  
                              Started by seer, 07-27-2018, 08:47 AM
                              2,045 responses
                              105,573 views
                              0 likes
                              Last Post thormas
                              by thormas
                               
                              Working...
                              X