Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Materialization and The Mystery of Emergent Phenomenon

"Rules, or laws, have no causal efficacy; they do not in fact “generate” anything. They serve merely to describe regularities and consistent relationships in nature. These patterns may be very illuminating and important, but the underlying causal agencies must be separately specified (though often they are not). But that aside, the game of chess illustrates precisely why any laws or rules of emergence and evolution are insufficient. Even in a chess game, you cannot use the rules to predict “history” — i.e., the course of any given game. Indeed, you cannot even reliably predict the next move in a chess game. Why? Because the “system” involves more than the rules of the game. It also includes the players and their unfolding, moment-by-moment decisions among a very large number of available options at each choice point. The game of chess is inescapably historical, even though it is also constrained and shaped by a set of rules, not to mention the laws of physics. Moreover, and this is a key point, the game of chess is also shaped by teleonomic, cybernetic, feedback-driven influences. It is not simply a self-ordered process; it involves an organized, “purposeful” activity."-Peter Corning. (2002), "The Re-Emergence of "Emergence": A Venerable Concept in Search of a Theory"

 The Cortex of The Paranormal In Nature
What are the synapses in the nervous system of all things as images of what we cannot see, as literal ghosts manifested in regard to our limited  animal perceptions?  In this perhaps, nothing is immutable. Is there a physics of consensus in relation to coherence whose density dictates the quantification of materialization?  I am reminded of Lyle Watson's quote being placed on a more global platform when he said “If the brain were so simple we could understand it, we would be so simple we couldn't.”
Everywhere I turn there seems to be a desire for narcissistic reductionism.To make the complex dumbed down to the extent we can reinforce our denial that there is a hole in the bucket of our desire to create a Newtonian universe of robotic certainty. Heaven help us if we did.

What is seen and what is not is the arbiter of prosaic considerations and yet this is not the measurement that holds true, so as of late I have been thinking of the paranormal in terms of a emergent phenomenon and this is perhaps a subject that requires several aspects or observations from several points to describe a very difficult and yet interesting aspect to all subjects as objects of what is in play as a spectrum of the emergent. Is the UFO phenomenon an emergent process? I suspect it is beyond the fact that the utilization of language as in similar to or a stop gap representation is like the snake that eats it's own tail in terms of word associations irregardless if there are unintentional or happenstance. Many of those I formerly considered intelligent peers appear to be swimming in place furiously to make an architectural statement on the plasticity of the fluid dynamics inherent in making the astonishingly complex, a linear narrative. No respect for the surrealism of prosaic reality as if to wave it off while competing in what R A Wilson called "who has the superior language".

This is not an attempt to ingratiate an audience with retreading our own ruts of peer induced camp fire stories, which seem to be deeper and narrower by the moment, and so I expect that what I am writing about, probably very few will bother to read or comment upon which, in of itself originates with Aristotle's "Metaphysics " and remains difficult and unanswerable and yet is worth pursuing with a sort of quixotic despair and dire curiosity. One word. Purpose.

 I can almost envision the concept of Jung's narrative of "Piktor's Metamorphosis" in relation to the transmigration of an a observer in variegated emerging forms as related to a verb rather than a noun as Phenomenology is the study of structures of consciousness as experienced from the first-person point of view. The central structure of an experience is its intentionality, its being directed toward something, as it is an experience of or about some object. An experience is directed toward an object by virtue of its content or meaning (which represents the object) together with appropriate enabling conditions. In other words, the realm of the sensible world is one based on relationships that are always emergent, fluid and within a spectrum rather than a fixed state, which seems to be the case in the paranormal realm as well.
Call this transmutation if you will. The sun as seen by our Paleolithic ancestors is the same sun we observe yet it is not the same sun they saw. The act of observation materializes an entire spectrum of emergent processes.

Is everything completely materialized? Of course not. Is the manifestation of memory as a fluid and plastic series of fixed images in series as they are manifested, strictly a human attribute not found in the greater nature in which we reside? I doubt this although unable to prove it.

The materialists of the paranormal as solipsists entrapped in languages written by repetition remind me of this analysis of the surrealism movement in terms of emergence as an observable quality that lends a definitive bias to measuring it.

"Among those who do not comprehend surrealism are people who look upon the real as verifiable, as something to be checked against past experience or observation. These individuals fail to see that for the surrealist the dimensions of the real cannot be gauged by reference to the familiar. So far as the real appears to have limits, they are foisted upon it by the mental, emotional, and imaginative limitations of spectators accustomed to measure the possible by the already known. For this reason, surrealism and many of its contemporary opponents remained inevitably at loggerheads. The one group insisted on estimating the scope of reality by its possibilities. The other condemned the real to be repetitive of what the past had shown them."

 Then there is the incomparable Ibn Al Aabi  whose ontology is that the necessary being is God, the one reality who cannot not exist because his quiddity is being which the term God as a incommensurable level of self organization that appears to be  as emergent as energetic principles that have no correspondence to our anthropomorphic stereotypes of being as an image of ourselves ......rather than ourselves being prototyped as a equally emergent process as one feeds the other in the dance of the immaterial and material as reconciled by states and stations of energetic interaction or "spooky actions at a distance" that seem to have no locality in particular as to their origin.

Impossible things are things which cannot exist as phenomena although they may subsist in the imagination as emergent intermediaries that have subsistence only by eating thought as a food that produces what is eaten by the architectural constrictions of personality.
Possible things are things which become 'existent entities' (a'yan mawjuda) when God as defined as a a state of being chooses to give them existence; their existence or non-existence at any given time depends on his will, or force of differentiation which appears to be placed upon relationships in emergence.  They have, however, been known eternally as 'immutable entities' (a'yan thabita). This latter term is rendered by Affifi  as 'fixed prototypes' and Izutsu ) as 'permanent archetypes', expressions which suggest that like the Platonic Ideas they are the original models of which objects in the phenomenal world are multiple copies.
 Chittick as Arabi's cheif Western translator, objects to this on the grounds that although the 'immutable entities' actually become the 'existent entities', they are the things themselves prior to their being given existence in the world. Although I have adopted his translation as closer to the meaning of the Arabic, I have reservations about his interpretation, for there are passages in Ibn al-'Arabi's writings which seem to imply that some of the immutable entities are universals.

None of what I write is new but the same question that haunted Kant haunts this writer although I suspect that there is a form of myopia in this that is unavoidable in terms of the questions that are posed between the material and immaterial ends of a paranormal realm.

“ In such a natural product as this every part is thought as owing its presence to the agency of all the remaining parts, and also as existing for the sake of the others and of the whole, that is as an instrument, or organ... The part must be an organ producing the other parts—each, consequently, reciprocally producing the others... Only under these conditions and upon these terms can such a product be an organized and self-organized being, and, as such, be called a physical end.
Is there a cortex of nature that transceives the physics of information? A mind like and yet unlike our own, that transcribes, organizes and balances the spectrum of radiant energy not unlike our our own cerebral cortex but is incommensurable in the spectrum of it's energetic scope? David Chamber's wrestles with Emergence as well..http://consc.net/notes/emergence.html

Mr Chamber's writes:
"Emergence is a tricky concept. It's easy to slide it down a slippery slope, and turn it into something implausible and easily dismissable. But it's not easy to delineate the interesting middle ground in between. Two unsatisfactory definitions of emergence, at either end of the spectrum:
(1) Emergence as "inexplicable" and "magical". This would cover high-level properties of a system that are simply not deducible from its low-level properties, no matter how sophisticated the deduction. This view leads easily into mysticism, and there is not the slightest evidence for it (except, perhaps, in the difficult case of consciousness, but let's leave that aside for now). All material properties seem to follow from low-level physical properties. Very few sophisticated people since the 19th century have actually believed in this kind of "emergence", and it's rarely what is referred to by those who invoke the term favourably. But if you mention "emergence", someone inevitably interprets you as meaning this, causing no end of confusion.
(2) Emergence as the existence of properties of a system that are not possessed by any of its parts. This, of course, is so ubiquitous a phenomenon that it's not deeply interesting. Under this definition, file cabinets and decks of cards (not to mention XOR gates) have plenty of emergent properties - so this is surely not what we mean.
The challenge, then, is to delineate a concept of emergence that falls between the deeply implausible (1) and the overly general (2). After all, serious people do like do use the term, and they think they mean something interesting by it. It probably will help to focus on a few core examples of "emergence":
  • (A) The game of Life: High-level patterns and structure emerge from simple low-level rules.
  • (B) Connectionist networks: High-level "cognitive" behaviour emerges from simple interactions between dumb threshold logic units.
  • (C) The operating system (Hofstadter's example): The fact that overloading occurs just around when there are 35 users on the system seems to be an emergent property of the system.
  • (D) Evolution: Intelligence and many other interesting properties emerge over the course of evolution by genetic recombination, mutation and natural selection."
    Again I am ruminating on the potential memory of our universes, and the transcription of this memory by way of material effect, whether it is a tree or an aphid or ourselves? In this I was pondering how little effect as a proportionate cell of the whole that we consciously steer and yet assume the mantle of a determining factor. Are we poised to effect such a memory, and if so, as if to change the biochemistry of the universe as a self organizing invasive species or as an outgrowth of our our comparatively embryonic, seeded state?

    Controlling The Ghosts Of Memory
    The materialization of the ghosts in the machinery of the physical brain has been a sub-theme for the last several posts, whether it is the recreation of a vanished, remote town inhabited by the ghosts from an artist's childhood,  the intermediary nature of  ghost architecture by it's material reliquary in Richard Nickle's work against the vagaries of space, or the ghosts of liminal perception synthesized by Perry Hall,. All of which lead back to painting with photonic light, and the video of Gregory Sam's personal insight on the literal interpretation of Solaris in regard to the painting of the genome of our planet's living systems through the reinterpretation of memory in relation to the dynamics of a planetary environment which never sits still for a portrait beneath our feet.. as we dream of it's conquest.

    Perhaps all of these are addressing the illusion of a now versus a then as a present tense and how this is addressed by both the subliminal and the alchemy of attempting such an impossible portrait of a continuum, to flash freeze space itself as a decidedly human attribute.

    Within The Frames of A Film
    All of this relates to the physics of information as we experience it, and create a portraiture as a mimicking of what has been implanted as a seed in the womb of the mind, as it is seeded"above" in a decidedly non human universe from the invisible ghosts of stagecraft  to materialization of a awe inspiring spectrum, that always must return to their arc of an original state..... to be yet re imagined in a eternal metamorphosis of expression by way of memory a strange art wherein all images are interconnected and yet no two are alike, with the exception of their intercommunication that only exists in relationships. Take away one and the dream becomes a parallel universe of the delimited affixed to the fractal nature of memory. A green house versus a red house yet both are houses.

    Spooky Actions At A Distance
    How odd this is, that is to say how odd it is what we consider prosaic, as if we were all amnesiacs in regard to no longer trusting our eyes in favor of the entrapment of language. The rub is in the physics of information once again This a theme that emerged from writing about memory as a sort of pliable script that hints of a certain fatalism placed on a sacrificial altar  in an entombed possibility. To write about such things is to comb the hair of the materiality of images as they relate to an odd portraiture of our situation as poor and needy mimics.Are we ourselves to one another, in effect synapses of a living network of relationships whose power of manifestation as a station of  a potential state remains untapped due to the signal noise of instinct, the entrapment of language, consensus constrictions etc?

    In this situation, perhaps nature does not require our permission as it is even more self organizing in it's capacity then we, it's subjects in taking our own physics of imagination and materializing them in a third state not completely material, not completely insensate. Our consensus of imagining, or imaging that is unconstrained by language or even conscious thought may be expressed as the inner becomes outward as the outward becomes an inward incompatibility as if we are blind as to who threw the ball. It was ourselves and yet not in the physics of information.  Fairy folk, the grotesques of Aliens, the cryptozoological  equivalences of precessing dopplegangers wrested from the ghosts of memory are  perhaps not as compartmentalized or containerized as we assume.


    In this we have quantum locks and keys that require cultural consensus as to images that can travel through our enormous network of synapses, all being similar and yet no two alike, also connected into the larger environment that reach intermittently to become coherent by way of a tipping point of density like the centripetal diffusion in relation to the saturation of it's medium by the similarities of self unaware images. A Lathe of Heaven by Consensus in strictly intermediate terms as an expression of a spectrum of materialization's, as they say, some more solid than others. We dislike the idea that we are in a very fluid and plastic medium and so cling to our neat compartmentalization of such phenomenon even to go so far as to suggest it's bolted together like a ships hull we could navigate over these images to wrest complete control over what we both suspect and fear in a driver-less carriage we sit in..

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