Man or God

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AuthorTopic: Man or God
...b10010b...
Member # 869
Profile Homepage #200
quote:
Originally written by Synergy:

Before time, God existed as pure energy and thought.
Believe what you want, but please stop abusing physics to make your points. Energy isn't a kind of thing; it's a property that things have. As SoT said in another topic, talking about pure energy makes about as much sense as talking about pure height.

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The Empire Always Loses: This Time For Sure!
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Shaper
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I wrote it, instantly guessing someone would take issue with the term...and then I left it in, just so you could feel good about correcting me. Wasn't that thoughtful?

-S-

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A4 ItemsA4 SingletonG4 ItemsG4 ForgingG4 Infiltrator NR Items The Lonely Celt
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The state of all existence is still 'pure' energy. That is, everything is composed of energy, including the matter.

It seems difficult to talk about the distribution of energy before the universe itself existed. Just like time, it would seem forms of energy are defined within the context of the universe, and don't have much meaning 'outside' the universe.

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"Let's just say that if complete and utter chaos was lightning, he'd be the sort to stand on a hilltop in a thunderstorm wearing wet copper armour and shouting 'All gods are false'."
Posts: 564 | Registered: Wednesday, April 14 2004 07:00
...b10010b...
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quote:
Originally written by Sticky:

The state of all existence is still 'pure' energy. That is, everything is composed of energy, including the matter.
Presumably you are thinking of the fact that energy is conserved, and so if any particle is converted to any number of other particles, the total amount of energy in the system won't change. To say that this means that both are "composed" of energy seems a bit of a stretch -- after all, there are other physical quantities that are conserved as well, like angular momentum, but people don't go around saying that everything is composed of angular momentum.

[ Wednesday, September 26, 2007 17:28: Message edited by: Thuryl ]

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The Empire Always Loses: This Time For Sure!
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Well, the conservations are based on certain symmetries, but how do you define symmetry without a universe? Once more, I don't think it makes any sense to talk about conservation outside the context of the 'universe'.

But yes, correction taken. I probably should have said
"'The state of all existence is still 'pure' energy. That is, everything still has a certain associated energy, including the matter." and it would have been a bit closer to being accurate.

[ Wednesday, September 26, 2007 19:41: Message edited by: Sticky ]

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"Let's just say that if complete and utter chaos was lightning, he'd be the sort to stand on a hilltop in a thunderstorm wearing wet copper armour and shouting 'All gods are false'."
Posts: 564 | Registered: Wednesday, April 14 2004 07:00
Electric Sheep One
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Symmetry or no, conserved or not, energy is not a substance, and nothing is made of it. Sorry. Being composed of pure energy is as impossible as being composed of pure height, or pure velocity, or pure happiness for that matter.

Not being a substance at all, energy is not a counterpart substance to matter. Speaking of matter as opposed to energy makes as much sense as speaking of matter as opposed to happiness. Matter and energy are not some sort of basic duo like yin and yang.

Why has this basic error become so prevalent? Bad science writing, and bad sci-fi screenplays, have no doubt perpetuated it. Did they originate it? Probably not.

I suppose the original problem dates back to the collapse of the ether theory of electromagnetism in the early 20th century. Electromagnetic fields are tremendously important, and it is natural enough to ask what they are made of. As long as we believed in the luminiferous ether we could explain that electromagnetic fields were not exactly things, so the question of what they are made of was really misplaced; but we could nevertheless clearly explain what they were in terms of a material thing. We could say they were stress patterns in a material substance, like the wobbles and wibbles in a hunk of jelly. The jelly in this case being the ether, a substance supposed to fill all space everywhere.

The ether had to be rigid enough to transmit transverse waves at the speed of light, but it also had to be 'thin' enough that it could penetrate all other matter without any difficulty. Objects from planets to mosquitoes had to be able to move through the ether without resistance. It was undetectable. It was all getting to be a bit too much to swallow, in fact, even before Michelson and Morley disproved it experimentally, and Einstein made it absurd theoretically.

The demise of the ether theory is often recounted as a milestone in the advance of science, and so it was. But people who tell this story generally breeze blithely on to the next chapter before anyone can catch them with the question, So what now can we say that electromagnetic fields are made of? I can rub a balloon and feel 'static' forces; I can feel the forces on a fridge magnet. Light is electromagnetic fields, and I can feel and see sunlight on my hand. What is this stuff, then?

Some bright lad, somewhere, must have answered with the glib nonsense that electromagnetic fields were made of pure energy. And for some reason people liked that answer, and it stuck.

The truth is that we can't say what electromagnetic fields are made of. They are themselves. They are as fundamental, as far as we know, as any material.

(These days we could say that they are made of photons, but this is a tautology rather than a true explanation, since photons are simply the quanta of the electromagnetic field. Photons are not really the answer to what the fields are made of, but the answer to how the fields can manage to obey quantum mechanics.)

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We're not doing cool. We're doing pretty.
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Off With Their Heads
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Dude, I'm a being of pure energy. I'm composed of mass. And mass is kinda like energy. QED.

The comic book visual of a "being of pure energy" tends to be some sort of ethereal, radiating body. The body appears to be made of light. But really, you only know what it's made of by the light that reaches your eyes, and the physical system that looks most like that is actually extremely hot gas. Grab a body-shaped piece of the Sun, and it'd look like the usual "being of pure energy" visualization. Unfortunately, that's matter, not energy (neglecting the fatuous argument above).

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Arancaytar: Every time you ask people to compare TM and Kel, you endanger the poor, fluffy kittens.
Smoo: Get ready to face the walls!
Ephesos: In conclusion, yarr.

Kelandon's Pink and Pretty Page!!: the authorized location for all things by me
The Archive of all released BoE scenarios ever
Posts: 7968 | Registered: Saturday, February 28 2004 08:00
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quote:
Originally written by Student of Trinity:

The truth is that we can't say what electromagnetic fields are made of.
Happiness?
Posts: 701 | Registered: Thursday, November 30 2006 08:00
Shaper
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And Happiness is made of fluffy kittens that have become entangled.

I'm more concerned as to how I manage to do anything at all as I'm only a vibrating pile of atoms...

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Lt. Sullust
Quaere verum
Posts: 2462 | Registered: Wednesday, October 3 2001 07:00
? Man, ? Amazing
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Eh, just wait 'til you get older and stop vibrating. At about 40 it begins to turn into a permanent shudder.

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Synergy, et al - "I don't get it."

Thralni - "a lot of people are ... too weird to be trusted"
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Warrior
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quote:
Originally written by Lt. Sullust:

And Happiness is made of fluffy kittens that have become entangled.

I'm more concerned as to how I manage to do anything at all as I'm only a vibrating pile of atoms...

Does that mean we can use Happiness to make a FTL data transfer device?

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"There are no turtles anywhere" Ponder Stibbons
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Law Bringer
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There shall be no cloning of happy kittens.

—Alorael, who believes the most likely source of kitten entanglement is yarn. Unfortunately, any message encoded in the yarn will be lost to Kitten Play Factor.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Shaper
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In some cases they become irreducibly entangled, thus one is unable to tell one kitten from the next...

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Lt. Sullust
Quaere verum
Posts: 2462 | Registered: Wednesday, October 3 2001 07:00
Electric Sheep One
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Kittens decohere almost as quickly as cats.

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We're not doing cool. We're doing pretty.
Posts: 3335 | Registered: Thursday, September 4 2003 07:00
Shaper
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And with that, the thread hissed and spit its final breath as harmlessly as a wobbly kitten, and promptly curled up for a nap.

-S-

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A4 ItemsA4 SingletonG4 ItemsG4 ForgingG4 Infiltrator NR Items The Lonely Celt
Posts: 2009 | Registered: Monday, September 12 2005 07:00
? Man, ? Amazing
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quote:
Originally written by Synergy:

And with that, the thread hissed and spit its final breath as harmlessly as a wobbly kitten, and promptly curled up for a nap.

-S-

Shortest. Post. Evar!

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Synergy, et al - "I don't get it."

Thralni - "a lot of people are ... too weird to be trusted"
Posts: 4114 | Registered: Monday, April 25 2005 07:00
Electric Sheep One
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A toothpick.

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We're not doing cool. We're doing pretty.
Posts: 3335 | Registered: Thursday, September 4 2003 07:00
Raven v. Writing Desk
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I like the "recent threads" summary of this one:

Man or God by Student of Trinity
A toothpick.

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Slarty vs. DeskDesk vs. SlartyTimeline of ErmarianG4 Strategy Central
"Making poorly-sourced claims is not the same as determining something."
Posts: 3560 | Registered: Wednesday, November 7 2001 08:00
Off With Their Heads
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I like pie.

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Arancaytar: Every time you ask people to compare TM and Kel, you endanger the poor, fluffy kittens.
Smoo: Get ready to face the walls!
Ephesos: In conclusion, yarr.

Kelandon's Pink and Pretty Page!!: the authorized location for all things by me
The Archive of all released BoE scenarios ever
Posts: 7968 | Registered: Saturday, February 28 2004 08:00
Lifecrafter
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This thread has been over for a few days. I'm getting the feeling that some of us secretly want to keep it alive. C'mon. Admit it. You want to see rants about religion and spirituality. Discussion about the divine resonates deep inside you in a way that pondering eyewear cannot. Doesn't it? You want mundane threads about video game code and posts counting how many times you’ve posted to be redirected to God. Oh yeah, you get mad about it…at least part of you does. The rest of you is quietly yearning. You mock to cover the desire. Be honest.
Posts: 701 | Registered: Thursday, November 30 2006 08:00
Law Bringer
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quote:
Originally written by Stillness:

This thread has been over for a few days. I'm getting the feeling that some of us secretly want to keep it alive. C'mon. Admit it. You want to see rants about religion and spirituality. Discussion about the divine resonates deep inside you in a way that pondering eyewear cannot. Doesn't it? You want mundane threads about video game code and posts counting how many times you’ve posted to be redirected to God. Oh yeah, you get mad about it…at least part of you does. The rest of you is quietly yearning. You mock to cover the desire. Be honest.
I can't tell if this is serious or not, but I'm very afraid that it is.

—Alorael, who offers the counterproposal that the smug atheists here enjoy feeling superior to poor, ignorant Bible-thumpers, and it's easiest to get that fix when someone is trumpeting his poor, ignorant, Bible-thumping ways in the appropriate thread.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Infiltrator
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quote:
Originally written by X:
A moment of appreciation:
—Alorael, who offers the counterproposal that the smug atheists here enjoy feeling superior to poor, ignorant Bible-thumpers, and it's easiest to get that fix when someone is trumpeting his poor, ignorant, Bible-thumping ways in the appropriate thread.
Alorael is absolutely right. Which keeps us Christians on our toes, right? It should.

Stillness is right too, sort of. But it's so deep in the subconscious that it's hardly worth saying openly.

Maybe this thread isn't dead yet. Whether that is of any consequence, we shall see. :rolleyes:

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"We were meant to live for so much more. Have we lost ourselves?" - Switchfoot
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Twas tongue in cheek. You still don't get me Alo.
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Law Bringer
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My tongue isn't in my cheek. It's sticking out at you. Also, my eyes are crossed and my fingers are stuck in my ears. I may be saying, "Nyah!" as well.

—Alorael, who is neither a Bible-thumper nor an atheist. He does everything he can to ensure that he's picked last for these things.

[ Saturday, September 29, 2007 23:27: Message edited by: X: A moment of appreciation ]
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Lifecrafter
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quote:
Originally written by X:
A moment of appreciation:
Alorael, who is neither a Bible-thumper nor an atheist.
Deist?
Posts: 701 | Registered: Thursday, November 30 2006 08:00

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