More on Truth

[ 21/12/20 Facebook – Philosophy of Science – Ron Dai’s comment “Ultimately the truth triumphs of untruth not because of the humans who present the truth, but because of the truth itself”]

It all depends what one means by truth.

A modern understanding of physics and quantum mechanics tells us that all things contain fundamental uncertainties and unknowables. We have quantum uncertainty, we have computational uncertainty from irrational numbers that may only ever be approximated to some degree, we have events from beyond our knowable light/time cone that are beyond knowledge, we have infinities, …….

A modern understanding of evolution tells us that evolution punishes slowness of computation far more harshly than slight errors in computation.

Thus it seems beyond any shadow of reasonable doubt that what we each perceive as reality is already a vastly simplified model of whatever “reality” itself actually is.

Then we have the evolutionary pressures to make simple conscious models of the already simplified perceptions; remembering that to a large degree speed is rewarded over accuracy, provided accuracy is close enough.

Thus there is a strong tendency for human minds to see simplistic “Truth” (with all the hubris embodied in that), rather than accept uncertainty and diversity (that almost certainly exist in most contexts with almost equal utility).

When one accepts that in exploring any infinity, what has been explored is necessarily a close approximation to nothing compared to what remains – then a degree of humility needs to accompany our confidence; and we need to accept that survival is enhanced by cooperation (all levels). This seems to be a meta “Truth” that seems to apply to most contexts most of the time.

About Ted Howard NZ

Seems like I might be a cancer survivor. Thinking about the systemic incentives within the world we find ourselves in, and how we might adjust them to provide an environment that supports everyone (no exceptions) - see www.tedhowardnz.com/money
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