All stories are true

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Pattern-chaser
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All stories are true

Post by Pattern-chaser »

If there are an infinite number of worlds, then there is a world where any given story is reified. So although a story is created and presented as fictional entertainment, it will actually happen somewhere, sometime. The story does not create the world where it happens, of course. It's just that, whatever the story is, it will have happened somewhere.

The only weakness to this non-intuitive argument (that I can see) is that there might also be an infinite number of stories, and trading off one infinity against another is something that even the bravest mathematicians shy away from, with good reason.

But what do you think? Could this apparently ridiculous idea, that all stories are reified somewhere, be valid?
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Re: All stories are true

Post by Papus79 »

This sounds a lot like Stephen Wolfram's idea of infinite rule set that he was talking to Curt Jaimungal about a few weeks ago, that the rules that generalize for us are derived in a 'trickle down' fashion that he illustrates through branchial graphs.

IMHO it's a bit like Boltzmann Brains I suppose, nifty but what can one do with it - particularly functioning from our particular rule set?
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Re: All stories are true

Post by Consul »

Pattern-chaser wrote: July 8th, 2021, 9:40 am …But what do you think? Could this apparently ridiculous idea, that all stories are reified somewhere, be valid?
It depends on whether possible-world realism is true. However, many stories aren't only about possible things/events but also about impossible ones; so in order for them to be true in some other world, impossible-world realism must be true too.

(There are different kinds of possibility, so it has to be clarified first whether the possible worlds in question are logically possible, ontologically possible, or nomologically/physically possible. The set of nomologically possible worlds is a subset of the set of ontologically possible worlds, which is a subset of the set of logically possible worlds—provided there is an intelligible distinction between ontological possibility and logical possibility.)

Possible Worlds: https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/possible-worlds/

Impossible Worlds: https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/impossible-worlds/
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Re: All stories are true

Post by Nick_A »

Pattern-chaser wrote: July 8th, 2021, 9:40 am If there are an infinite number of worlds, then there is a world where any given story is reified. So although a story is created and presented as fictional entertainment, it will actually happen somewhere, sometime. The story does not create the world where it happens, of course. It's just that, whatever the story is, it will have happened somewhere.

The only weakness to this non-intuitive argument (that I can see) is that there might also be an infinite number of stories, and trading off one infinity against another is something that even the bravest mathematicians shy away from, with good reason.

But what do you think? Could this apparently ridiculous idea, that all stories are reified somewhere, be valid?
Rather than fantasy stories it seems more logical to question multiverse theory. Is there one universe or an infinity of them all based on the interactions of universal laws rather than fantasy? From Wiki"
The multiverse is a hypothetical group of multiple universes.[a] Together, these universes comprise everything that exists: the entirety of space, time, matter, energy, information, and the physical laws and constants that describe them. The different universes within the multiverse are called "parallel universes", "other universes", "alternate universes", or "many worlds".
It seems logical when we consider that if we lived in the same universe, eternity would never change. However the fact that change is possible indicates more than one possible eternity. So the multiverse theory seems necessary for those who believe the universe is structured on the interactions of universal laws.
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Re: All stories are true

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Pattern-chaser wrote: July 8th, 2021, 9:40 am If there are an infinite number of worlds, then there is a world where any given story is reified. So although a story is created and presented as fictional entertainment, it will actually happen somewhere, sometime. The story does not create the world where it happens, of course. It's just that, whatever the story is, it will have happened somewhere.

The only weakness to this non-intuitive argument (that I can see) is that there might also be an infinite number of stories, and trading off one infinity against another is something that even the bravest mathematicians shy away from, with good reason.
An infinite number of real worlds doesn't imply that every world is real.

In mathematics, the set of real numbers is infinite but this doesn't include imaginary numbers. Real and imaginary numbers are included in the infinite set of complex numbers.

Likewise, there could be an infinite set of real stories that doesn't include imaginary stories, and an infinite set of stories that includes all real and imaginary stories.
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Re: All stories are true

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Pattern-chaser wrote: July 8th, 2021, 9:40 am If there are an infinite number of worlds, then there is a world where any given story is reified. So although a story is created and presented as fictional entertainment, it will actually happen somewhere, sometime. The story does not create the world where it happens, of course. It's just that, whatever the story is, it will have happened somewhere.

The only weakness to this non-intuitive argument (that I can see) is that there might also be an infinite number of stories, and trading off one infinity against another is something that even the bravest mathematicians shy away from, with good reason.

But what do you think? Could this apparently ridiculous idea, that all stories are reified somewhere, be valid?
Two issues, first there aren't an infinite number of worlds, due to Olbers paradox. As others have noted, an infinite set of stories could be missing innumerable examples.
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Re: All stories are true

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Consul wrote: July 8th, 2021, 1:26 pm
Pattern-chaser wrote: July 8th, 2021, 9:40 am …But what do you think? Could this apparently ridiculous idea, that all stories are reified somewhere, be valid?
It depends on whether possible-world realism is true. However, many stories aren't only about possible things/events but also about impossible ones; so in order for them to be true in some other world, impossible-world realism must be true too.
So it seems a little less likely that there is a world where Winnie the Pooh - noted ursine philosopher - is real. 😢 Oh well, it's a fun discussion anyway, in these days when fun is a little thin on the ground. 😉

Thanks, Consul. How do we recognise "impossible" events, though? Impossible according to ... what? Just a thought....
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Re: All stories are true

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Pattern-chaser wrote: July 9th, 2021, 9:20 amThanks, Consul. How do we recognise "impossible" events, though? Impossible according to ... what? Just a thought....
Impossible-world realism (the concretistic version, according to which those worlds are existent/real concrete nonactual entities rather than abstract sets of propositions) makes no logical sense, since what is impossible is necessarily nonexistent/nonreal, isn't it?

We cannot ever find impossible events or things in our actual world, but there are representations of impossible ones such as those made by M. C. Escher. For example, the building depicted here is architecturally impossible:

Image
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Re: All stories are true

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Pattern-chaser wrote: July 9th, 2021, 9:20 amThanks, Consul. How do we recognise "impossible" events, though? Impossible according to ... what? Just a thought....
Consul wrote: July 9th, 2021, 9:49 am Impossible-world realism (the concretistic version, according to which those worlds are existent/real concrete nonactual entities rather than abstract sets of propositions) makes no logical sense, since what is impossible is necessarily nonexistent/nonreal, isn't it?

We cannot ever find impossible events or things in our actual world, but there are representations of impossible ones, such as those made by M. C. Escher. For example, the building depicted here is architecturally impossible:

Image

At first, I thought you had nailed it. I still think you may have a point, but I observe that the Escher paintings are simple trickery, optical illusions that exploit the way our eyes work. They were drawn to use this trick, and no-one minds because they're very clever. But they were never intended to portray what they seem to; the architecture is not presented as possible, but simply as visual entertainment.

When a story deviates from the real world that we know, plausibility becomes an issue. Could it really be as the story describes? And there are two answers, of course. The first is no, we know of no way this could be possible. The corresponding answer is yes, maybe it could be true, but we don't currently know or understand how it could be so. When we're at the core of a speculative topic like this one, the point has to be whether the story is possible, and that kind of certainty is difficult to find with any, er, certainty.

In even the most far-fetched journeys into imagination, there are underlying rules and structure, which tends to say to us that this just might be possible.... Even magic and its use is governed by rules and consistency, making it a little more believable. Is there really a story that we can say, without significant doubt, 'no, this is impossible'? I can't think of one. Can anyone else?
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Re: All stories are true

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Pattern-chaser wrote: July 10th, 2021, 8:25 amWhen a story deviates from the real world that we know, plausibility becomes an issue. Could it really be as the story describes? And there are two answers, of course. The first is no, we know of no way this could be possible. The corresponding answer is yes, maybe it could be true, but we don't currently know or understand how it could be so. When we're at the core of a speculative topic like this one, the point has to be whether the story is possible, and that kind of certainty is difficult to find with any, er, certainty.
In even the most far-fetched journeys into imagination, there are underlying rules and structure, which tends to say to us that this just might be possible.... Even magic and its use is governed by rules and consistency, making it a little more believable. Is there really a story that we can say, without significant doubt, 'no, this is impossible'? I can't think of one. Can anyone else?
Foe example, the fictional world of superheroes is full of (natural/physical) impossibilities, isn't it?

But the general question is: How do we know what is (im)possible and what isn't?

Here we enter the epistemology of modality: https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/moda ... stemology/
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Re: All stories are true

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Pattern-chaser wrote: July 8th, 2021, 9:40 am If there are an infinite number of worlds, then there is a world where any given story is reified. So although a story is created and presented as fictional entertainment, it will actually happen somewhere, sometime. The story does not create the world where it happens, of course. It's just that, whatever the story is, it will have happened somewhere.

The only weakness to this non-intuitive argument (that I can see) is that there might also be an infinite number of stories, and trading off one infinity against another is something that even the bravest mathematicians shy away from, with good reason.

But what do you think? Could this apparently ridiculous idea, that all stories are reified somewhere, be valid?
And so is mocked the notion of infinitude.
It is well known that given sufficient time Hitler becomes a saint. Ih fact such a story has already been written by Norman Spinrad.
Iron Dream is a ficticious novel written by an A Hitler, who living as a journalist in New York was a version of Adolf who was not refused a place in Art School but finished his course and lives as a journalist in the US, where he writes the book.
The book tells of a right wing regime in Germany who practices eugenics and conquers all Europe at last destroys the Evil Soviets. The book receives rapturous adulation.

Of course it has been well known for a long time to expect that an infinite number of typwritters played by an infinite number of monkeys finally comes up with the works of Shakespeare.
When that finally happened, as it must have, no one was able to account for the persistent TYPO in Hamlet which reads:

Let me see. [Takes the skull.] Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him,
Well,* A fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy. He
hath borne me on his back a thousand times.

*"Horatio"
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Re: All stories are true

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Pattern-chaser wrote: July 10th, 2021, 8:25 amWhen a story deviates from the real world that we know, plausibility becomes an issue. Could it really be as the story describes? And there are two answers, of course. The first is no, we know of no way this could be possible. The corresponding answer is yes, maybe it could be true, but we don't currently know or understand how it could be so. When we're at the core of a speculative topic like this one, the point has to be whether the story is possible, and that kind of certainty is difficult to find with any, er, certainty.
In even the most far-fetched journeys into imagination, there are underlying rules and structure, which tends to say to us that this just might be possible.... Even magic and its use is governed by rules and consistency, making it a little more believable. Is there really a story that we can say, without significant doubt, 'no, this is impossible'? I can't think of one. Can anyone else?
Consul wrote: July 10th, 2021, 9:16 am For example, the fictional world of superheroes is full of (natural/physical) impossibilities, isn't it?
It's full of things that we can't explain, and do not know how they could be possible. But still, to say outright that they're "impossible" is not really justified, is it? 🤔


Consul wrote: July 10th, 2021, 9:16 am But the general question is: How do we know what is (im)possible and what isn't?

Here we enter the epistemology of modality: https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/moda ... stemology/
Yes, I suppose this is the core of this topic. What is impossible, and how do we recognise or demonstrate its impossibility?
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Re: All stories are true

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Pattern-chaser wrote: July 10th, 2021, 9:53 am
Consul wrote: July 10th, 2021, 9:16 am For example, the fictional world of superheroes is full of (natural/physical) impossibilities, isn't it?
It's full of things that we can't explain, and do not know how they could be possible. But still, to say outright that they're "impossible" is not really justified, is it? 🤔
For instance, Superman's flying clearly contradicts the laws of physics.
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Re: All stories are true

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LuckyR wrote: July 9th, 2021, 2:58 am there aren't an infinite number of worlds, due to Olbers paradox.
How does Olbers paradox rule out an infinite number of worlds (especially considering that: an infinite number of stars could be positioned in a straight line (like natural numbers on a number line) directed away from an observer and appear as a single point of light in the sky; the observable universe could be a finite subset of an infinite universe; there could be an infinite number of universes; etc)?

A "world" can refer to a planet, a universe, a mind ("inner world"), or other non-physical realm (eg, "dream world", "supernatural world", "sub-natural world"). What counts and doesn't count as a "world" here?
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Re: All stories are true

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Consul wrote: July 10th, 2021, 12:01 pm For instance, Superman's flying clearly contradicts the laws of physics.
Birds can fly. Planes can fly. How does Superman flying clearly contradict the laws of physics (especially considering that he is reportedly an alien from another planet, he could have physiology and/or access to technology that allows him to fly, and the laws of physics are not fully understood yet)?
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