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RE: NOVELTY. DOES IT REALLY "EXIST"?

in #philosophy7 months ago

I think you answer part of what you say, because you say how can novelty exist? But you also say, we live in constant change, so if things change and are different each time, they are always new. Things live by renewing themselves, they are in part totally the same, in a part that may not have changed, and in part totally different, in a part that has changed. Or if you say that everything changes, they are totally different, and therefore new, always.

Although I am one of those who believe, that in essence, things remain (almost) always the same, and change a lot but (almost) only in appearance. It's like there are new ways of looking at the same thing, the old in a new package, maybe it's really new, I don't know.

And on death, I see death as something we have to live, as something necessary, it is a biological need and even of everything we are, therefore it is not good to see it as something bad, but as something that we all must go through sooner or later. It is better to make peace with death than to live in fear of it, because a life lived in fear is not worth living.

We must know that our life here ends with a death, it is the natural end, and it must be, if everything goes well. For me, living like a machine, like a tool, is not even an option.

Regards!

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It is a thinking problem that we have to deal with. Your hint that I answered the question myself and how you put it into words raises new questions in principle.

so if things change and are different each time, they are always new.

If something existing becomes something new, then the question arises at what point exactly (in a period of time / or space-time) such a transition - from the existing old into a new - happens, doesn't it? When an egg cell and sperm cell fuse together, are they something completely new? Or are they a combination of something existing with something new - or better: something different?

Things live by renewing themselves, they are in part totally the same, in a part that may not have changed, and in part totally different, in a part that has changed.

Which part remains the same, which part changes and contains the old and the new equally, and which part is completely new? In principle, this cannot really be said, because you cannot separate parts that remain the same, parts that have changed slightly and completely new parts, because they always form a whole, I think. It would make no sense at all for the growth process to make a separation, because this would interrupt the growth and thus destroy it.

The transition from a cell cluster into a foetus into an embryo cannot be considered as separated from each other, because after all the cells are still present from which the living being grows. However, it can also be said that these primordial cells are subject to change and through growth and ever new connections to the end of a baby's growth in the womb may no longer be completely identical with their own initial stage.

Actually the term "novelty" is misleading and one would have to say "otherness", which in turn is linguistically connoted quite differently.
For example, if the virologist says "I have identified a different virus", it would sound less dramatic (or scary) than if he says "I have discovered a completely new virus!

"New" suggests something unknown. Something that we don't know suggests that we don't know how to deal with it. It suggests that this newness does not allow old familiar considerations, is not accessible to common treatments and methods.

My thesis is: Since we can't really know, spreading the news that we have discovered something new is rather questionable and should make us skeptical. We really can't know when something old has turned into something new, because we never really know the point where this transition actually takes place, nor do we know the exact time period, i.e. the exact duration of the change process. All we can do is to artificially create this interface and say: That's what we suspect here and that's why we make a cut here. Then we define the point in time. So we cannot speak of knowledge, but only of consensus and agreement in our considerations.

I agree on all points with you considering "death".

When an egg cell and sperm cell fuse together, are they something completely new?

No.

"egg cell" is an abstract ontological fabrication.

"sperm cell" is an abstract ontological fabrication.

All "matter" is energy.

Energy is anti-static, necessarily in transition constantly (in service of the second law of thermodynamics).

There is no such "thing" as an "electron".

An "electron" is a pattern of energy (constantly accepting and releasing "other" energy) that is never exactly in the same "place" at exactly the same "time".

Instead of thinking of "particles" as distinct "points", try to imagine them as "scatter patterns" which leave a long tail through time and pierce into an opaque future, splitting themselves and recombining themselves into various subtle variations and transformations.

A human is also a "scatter pattern".

You are simultaneously your earliest childhood memory.

That is beautifully expressed by you. Yes, I also experience reality in such a way that we cannot pin things down on separate situations and fix them compulsively. The boundaries of what we know and do not know are fluid and not set. Setting is always a deliberate act to be able to make decisions. This is also necessary, but should be accompanied by calm consideration and trust in our potential. Much of what we excitedly wish to change does not require correction. And those things that could be cultivated thoughtfully and wisely, we then neglect as a result of overanxiety and actionism.

I am glad, that you did not say "a human is simply a scatter pattern." Makes a huge difference towards what you've expressed earlier (or later? I lost track:)

Your acknowledgement is appreciated.

If something existing becomes something new, then the question arises at what point exactly (in a period of time / or space-time) such a transition - from the existing old into a new - happens, doesn't it?

That transition occurs at the exact moment the change occurs. What changes becomes different, and if no change is verified, then it would remain the same, old as before.

Actually the term "novelty" is misleading and one would have to say "otherness", which in turn is linguistically connoted quite differently.
For example, if the virologist says "I have identified a different virus", it would sound less dramatic (or scary) than if he says "I have discovered a completely new virus!

Perhaps the virologist should not say that he found a completely new virus, but he did find a partially new virus, because it is partly different (or new) and partly the same as before (or old); partly it is new because it is not exactly the same as its predecessor; but in part it is the same because it is not completely new but there are parts that remained unchanged that make them like SARS, otherwise, we would not relate them but we would see them as two different viruses.

Therefore, despite being a whole, apparently there are parts that differ in their qualities.

"New" suggests something unknown. Something that we don't know suggests that we don't know how to deal with it. It suggests that this newness does not allow old familiar considerations, is not accessible to common treatments and methods.

Yes. But the same applies to the word "different" or "other", how can you know something that is different from what you know? How can you use the same treatments and methods for something that is completely different?

A counterpart for your thesis would be to say that, although it is true that we cannot know exactly when said transition occurs (from the same to the new), that does not mean that said transition does not occur, we do know that such transition occurs, and it is best to assume that as things are constantly changing, things are constantly being renewed and are permanently new. In this case, the novelty would be the most common thing in the world.

My real point is probably that I don't want only the general consensus to determine my highly personal moments of transition. I find that consensus can also contradict my personal or intimate need to know when something is "new" for me. Whether it is health or habit. There is a highly personal, mine, health and habit. But when the general public starts to penetrate so much into this intimate area, I build up resistance.

I begin to question, as I do now, the entire construct of my previous life. On the one hand, this can be very enlightening, on the other hand, it can be very frightening.

An example: In Germany it is legal for a woman to have an abortion until the third month of pregnancy. It is common for her to swallow the contraceptive pill until she is on average thirty years old. Aborting a pregnancy is a highly intimate decision, but it is nevertheless considered a legal as well as moral decision for the general public.

But what is generality? Is it a judge who sentences me for having an abortion from the first day after the third month? Or is it not rather my very direct social environment that might try to influence this matter? It always depends on who I am dealing with. Is it the doctor? Is it my husband? My family? Who is it? It is always those people I decide that I will allow to have an influence on me. Not the ones I don't want to be influenced by. Isn't it also the growing life inside me that I want to "listen" to? My personal attitude towards what I define as living?

Fortunately I never came into this dilemma. However, as far as the contraceptive pill is concerned, I would decide differently today than when I was a young woman. The entire market of contraception on the one hand and artificial insemination on the other hand is exactly that for me: a sales market. If I decide not to become pregnant, I have other means that seem worth considering. Women should educate women, not primarily school or the state.

Yes, you raised a good point. We can equally define everything as "new" when we speak of a constant change in human existence, biologically and socially, planetary.

But what bothers me most is the loss of individual choice. This must and should be possible, because if I am only presented with external, i.e. legal, moral, cultural, political, economic, biological, psychological factors and consents, then I lose my sovereignty.

Thus a physician must not refuse to help me and, for example, refuse a medical certificate and suggest to me that I am only imagining my suffering. It is ultimately up to me to decide whether I classify myself as healthy or sick, fit for work or not.

At present, however, the lawmaker says when I have to be considered sick. That is an absurdity. It is a gross violation of my sovereignty and presents me as common property, as the property of those who want to force me to obey. This is the opening of Pandora's box. And probably only time will make us forget again that what has escaped from the box as a poisonous and foggy vapor that misleads the senses may finally dissolve into sound and smoke.

I see. I can understand what you say. It is a matter of individual choice, as you say, but we must know that our choices have consequences and that choosing carries responsibility, so it is not simply about doing what we want. All of society and other external agents try to intervene in our decisions because, in theory, they want to control us and make us do what they think is right, that's not the way and in a perfect world that would not happen, but we must know that, despite this, we do have to choose wisely and be fully aware of what the decisions we make mean.

In the end, it is something very intimate as you said yourself, because nobody should tell us how to exercise our freedom, and nobody can tell us what is right and what is not, because no one knows exactly what state we are in and what we can and cannot do, and what is the best we can do, which would be the right thing to do, and since no one knows that, it is a personal decision that we must make and face.

I don't know, but its complex.

"New" suggests something unknown. Something that we don't know suggests that we don't know how to deal with it. It suggests that this newness does not allow old familiar considerations, is not accessible to common treatments and methods.

SARS/COV-2 is not properly "novel".

This much should be obvious from the official name.

"New" suggests something unknown. Something that we don't know suggests that we don't know how to deal with it. It suggests that this newness does not allow old familiar considerations, is not accessible to common treatments and methods.

SARS/COV-2 is not properly "novel".

This much should be obvious from the official name.

"New" suggests something unknown. Something that we don't know suggests that we don't know how to deal with it. It suggests that this newness does not allow old familiar considerations, is not accessible to common treatments and methods.

SARS/COV-2 is not properly "novel".

This much should be obvious from the official name.

Yes, isn't it irritating that people do not stumble over the name?

We must know that our life here ends with a death, it is the natural end, and it must be, if everything goes well. For me, living like a machine, like a tool, is not even an option.

Please explain.

It is an inside joke that I make when I have heard some transhumanists say that their "improvements" to their body will help them to be more productive in cases like work, which turns them, in my opinion, into tools, like "a hammer is more useful than a fist" or something like that.

I say it's not an option because I don't think I would.

Wow.

That sounds like dreaming about having the powers of superman so you can pull some double-shifts at your construction job.

The "promise" of "transhumanism" is to make human communication more seamless and error-free.

The whole idea is to transcend the drudgery and isolation (and inevitable pain) associated with "the human condition".

A kind of. But we will always be human, whether we accept it or not, the aim to make the human less human seems destined to fail when we understand that we are not only human in body but also in mind. We think and feel inexorably like humans. It's like changing the appearance of something even though deep down it remains the same. I don't know if it is possible for humans to be able to change their human nature, leaving aside the question of whether that would be a good or bad thing.

The "human experience" would seem to include quite a broad scope.

What do you mean?

Helen Keller.

Oh yeah, I agree. It is quite a broad scope. Each human experience is different from the others, some more similar, but they all differ, to the point that I wonder what the essence of the human being is, all being a group with many apparent differences, what is it that we all have that makes us human? That is something that needs to be answered when addressing the issue of transhumanism.