Philosophy & Sophistry:
Philosophy begins, then, with the questioning of certainties in the realm of knowledge and the cultivation of a love of wisdom.
Philosophy is erotic, not just epistemic.
There has never been a more important time to emphasize this distinction between philosophy and sophistry. — Simon Critchley, The Book of Dead Philosophers
A Problem with the Multiverse Idea:
The notion that our universe is part of a vast or infinite multiverse is popular—and understandably so, because it is based on a methodological error that is easy to fall into.
Our current theories can work at the level of the universe only if our universe is a subsystem of a larger system. So we invent a fictional environment and fill it with other universes. This cannot lead to any real scientific progress, because we cannot confirm or falsify any hypothesis about universes causally disconnected from our own. — Lee Smolin, Time Reborn: From the Crisis in Physics to the Future of the Universe
Nature’s Laws Evolve in Time:
Laws, then, are not imposed on the universe from outside it. No external entity, whether divine or mathematical, specifies in advance what the laws of nature are to be. Nor do the laws of nature wait, mute, outside of time for the universe to begin.
Rather the laws of nature emerge from inside the universe and evolve in time with the universe they describe. — Lee Smolin, Time Reborn: From the Crisis in Physics to the Future of the Universe
Of the mind, the inner consciousness, the soul, my prayer desired that I might discover a mode of life for it, so that it might not only conceive of such a life, but actually enjoy it on the earth.
I wished to search out a new and higher set of ideas on which the mind should work. — Richard Jefferies, The Story of My Heart: An Autobiography
Time & Future:
But if time is real, the future is not determinable from knowledge of the present. — Lee Smolin, Time Reborn: From the Crisis in Physics to the Future of the Universe
To Think in Time:
On a personal level, to think in time is to accept the uncertainty of life as the necessary price of being alive.
To rebel against the precariousness of life, to reject uncertainty, to adopt a zero tolerance to risk, to imagine that life can be organized to completely eliminate danger, is to think outside time.
To be human is to live suspended between danger and opportunity. — Lee Smolin, Time Reborn: From the Crisis in Physics to the Future of the Universe
Brain Is Only a Receiver:
My brain is only a receiver, in the universe there is a core from which we obtain knowledge, strength, inspiration. I have not penetrated into the secrets of this core, but I know that it exists. — Nikola Tesla (via samsaranmusing)
How Much Consciousness Does an iPhone Have? : The New Yorker
Resting by the tumulus [burial site], the spirit of the man who had been interred there was to me really alive, and very close.
This was quite natural, as natural and simple as the grass waving in the wind, the bees humming, and the larks’ songs.
Only by the strongest effort of the mind could I understand the idea of extinction; that was supernatural, requiring a miracle; the immortality of the soul natural, like earth.
Listening to the sighing of the grass I felt immortality as I felt the beauty of the summer morning, and I thought beyond immortality, of other conditions, more beautiful than existence, higher than immortality. — Richard Jefferies, The Story of My Heart: An Autobiography
The Moment of Time:
Embracing time means believing that reality consists only of what’s real in each moment of time.
Thinking in time is not relativism but a form of relationalism—a philosophy that asserts that the truest description of something consists of specifying its relationships to the other parts of the system it is part of. — Lee Smolin, Time Reborn: From the Crisis in Physics to the Future of the Universe