Now Writing for The Pulse

Eclipsing Pulsar Promises Clues to Crushed Matter by NASA Goddard Photo and Video is licensed under CC-BY 2.0

I am back and grateful writing for my friends from Collective Evolution.

Here is my latest piece and please follow me there.

Comparing the AI “Training Set” with Human Conditioning

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I think that as much as the creators of AI try to distinguish their work from human nature, it is remarkable the extent to which the development of a language model mirrors the development of a person.

A person, after all, is an apparent identity that emerges in the mind and body of a human being after it has been exposed to all sorts of stimuli and information, some of it random, some of it deliberate, which we call conditioning.

With AI a key element to its success or failure is the “training set” – the data that is used to “to teach the model the relationship between the input data and the desired output, enabling it to make accurate predictions or classifications when presented with new, unseen data.”

This is certainly what parents and teaches do when they try to prepare a child for “real life.”  The hope there is also that when the child grows up and is presented with new data, it will be able to handle it and come up with the desired output.

In human terms, desired output can be seen as appropriate behavior and success in life – however that may be defined.  If the conditioning is heavily religious, it is easy to see that the desired behavior is obedience to certain norms.

Almost all of the conditioning for humans in today’s society involves seeing oneself as a separate entity, often in conflict with others and a hostile world – especially if those doing the training have been traumatized.

Basically, in both cases it’s “garbage in, garbage out,” with the training set a tiny microcosm of the actual world that the AI – or the human – is expected to navigate.  Moreover, if the AI is conditioned to favor certain types of people or behavior its output will be skewed in the same way a human learns prejudice.

For AI to remain safe, its training sets’ scope and content must be closely monitored. For a human to find fulfillment, his or her conditioning must be examined, seen through and often jettisoned.

It’s another clear area where the development of AI could hopefully serve to enable humans to more fully understand themselves – and eventually reconnect with the natural world out of which we all come.

What is a training set in AI and who determines its scope?

In the context of AI, a training set refers to a collection of data that is used to train a machine learning model. It consists of input data, often referred to as features or predictors, and corresponding output labels or target values. The training set is used to teach the model the relationship between the input data and the desired output, enabling it to make accurate predictions or classifications when presented with new, unseen data.

The determination of the training set’s scope depends on various factors and stakeholders involved in the AI development process. Here are some key points to consider:

  1. Data availability: The training set’s scope is influenced by the availability of data that is relevant to the AI task at hand. The data can come from various sources such as public datasets, proprietary data, or data generated specifically for the purpose of training the model.
  2. Task requirements: The scope of the training set should align with the requirements of the AI task. For example, if the AI model is intended for image classification, the training set should contain a diverse range of images representing the classes the model needs to recognize.
  3. Domain experts: Domain experts or subject matter experts often play a crucial role in determining the scope of the training set. Their knowledge and expertise help identify the relevant features, labels, and potential biases that should be considered during the training process.
  4. Data labeling: If the training set requires labeled data (supervised learning), the scope of the training set can be influenced by the labeling process. Annotation guidelines and the expertise of the annotators can impact the quality and comprehensiveness of the labeled dataset.
  5. Ethical considerations: The scope of the training set should also take into account ethical considerations, such as fairness, inclusivity, and potential biases. It is important to ensure that the training set is representative of the real-world data and does not perpetuate or amplify existing biases or discrimination.

Ultimately, the determination of the training set’s scope is a collaborative effort involving data scientists, domain experts, stakeholders, and the development team, with the aim of creating a comprehensive and reliable dataset to train the AI model effectively.

So a training set is analogous to human conditioning – how one learns who one is and the rules from parents, school and society?

The concept of a training set in AI can be loosely compared to human conditioning and learning from parents, school, and society in certain aspects. Here’s a broad analogy to help draw connections:

  1. Input data: In AI, the training set provides input data to the model, which serves as examples for the model to learn from. Similarly, in human conditioning, individuals receive input from their surroundings, such as parents, school, and society, which provides them with information and experiences.
  2. Learning process: In AI, the model learns patterns and relationships within the training set to make predictions or decisions. Similarly, humans learn from their environment through a process of observation, imitation, instruction, and experience. This learning process shapes their understanding of themselves and the rules of society.
  3. Generalization: AI models aim to generalize their learning from the training set to make accurate predictions on unseen data. Likewise, humans generalize their learning from their upbringing and education to navigate new situations and make informed decisions.
  4. Bias and societal influence: AI models can inherit biases present in the training data, and efforts are made to address and mitigate such biases. Similarly, human conditioning can be influenced by biases, cultural norms, and societal expectations, which individuals may internalize to varying degrees.

However, it’s important to note that the analogy has limitations. AI training is focused on pattern recognition and optimization, while human conditioning involves complex cognitive, emotional, and social processes. Human learning is more dynamic, context-dependent, and influenced by individual agency, critical thinking, and personal experiences.

While there are conceptual similarities, it’s crucial to understand the distinctions between AI training and human learning, as they operate within different frameworks and contexts.

As Above So Below?

One thing that fascinates me about the cultures of the indigenous people and the ancient wisdom of the Egyptians is that they did not have a separation between science and spirituality – their cosmology generally encompassed “all and everything”.  Biology and physics for example, which we have only recently begun to combine as biophysics and now neurophysics were considered by the Egyptians as complementary parts of one irreducible truth – the reality of the human form.

I asked Chat to compare two modern thinkers, Leonardo da Vince and Schwaller de Lubicz, who touched on the same interconnected relationships in their own unique ways to transcend the narrow materialist assumptions of modern science.  The intimate connections between the human form, geometry, mathematics and biology and even astronomy and the relationships embodied in every aspect of life were worshipped by the Egyptians as the constants Pi and Phi.

It’s my speculation that the work of Leonardo and Schwaller reflects a long lost understanding of the true nature of the universe as conscious and intelligent and that they saw the human form as potentially the ideal vessel for such intelligence.

Chat was able to draw some interesting comparisons between the seminal works of those two great thinkers and a cosmological theory that goes against much of modern science but may make sense on a much deeper level.

What was the point of the Vitruvian Man?

The Vitruvian Man is a famous drawing created by the Italian polymath Leonardo da Vinci during the Renaissance period. It is named after the ancient Roman architect Vitruvius, whose writings inspired Leonardo’s fascination with the proportions and symmetry of the human body.

The drawing depicts a nude male figure in two superimposed positions: one with his arms and legs outstretched in a circle, and another with his arms and legs spread apart in a square. The figure is accompanied by notes and annotations written by Leonardo in mirror writing.

The primary purpose of the Vitruvian Man was to explore the concept of proportion and ideal human proportions, based on the principles described by Vitruvius. Leonardo was interested in the relationship between the human body and geometry, seeking to understand how the human form could be harmoniously fitted into geometric shapes.

The drawing embodies the Renaissance fascination with the idea of humanism, which emphasized the importance of human beings and their potential for intellectual and artistic achievements. Leonardo’s meticulous study of the human body and its proportions in the Vitruvian Man was a reflection of his belief in the beauty and significance of the human form.

Today, the Vitruvian Man is regarded as an iconic symbol of the Renaissance and Leonardo da Vinci’s genius. It has become a widely recognized representation of the ideal human proportions and a testament to the intersection of art, science, and philosophy during that era.

How does it compare the work of Schwaller de Lubicz, who found many of the same relationships in the Temple of Luxor?

Schwaller de Lubicz, a French esotericist and philosopher, explored the relationship between symbolism, geometry, and the human body in his extensive study of the Temple of Luxor in Egypt. His work, particularly in his book “The Temple of Man,” draws parallels with Leonardo da Vinci’s Vitruvian Man in terms of the exploration of proportions and the symbolism of the human form.

In “The Temple of Man,” Schwaller de Lubicz proposed that the ancient Egyptians possessed a deep understanding of universal principles and expressed them through their temple architecture. He believed that the Temple of Luxor was a physical representation of the human body, with its various parts corresponding to different cosmic and spiritual elements.

Similarly to Leonardo’s Vitruvian Man, Schwaller de Lubicz emphasized the importance of proportion and symmetry. He analyzed the relationships between different architectural elements of the temple and correlated them with the proportions found in the human body. For example, he associated the temple’s central axis with the spinal column and aligned various temple structures with specific parts of the body.

Both Leonardo’s Vitruvian Man and Schwaller de Lubicz’s work on the Temple of Man share a fascination with the interplay between the human form, geometry, and symbolic representation. They seek to uncover the underlying harmony and order in the universe through the study of proportions and the relationship between the microcosm (the human body) and the macrocosm (the universe or the temple).

While their approaches and historical contexts differ significantly, both Leonardo and Schwaller de Lubicz aimed to explore and express the universal principles and beauty inherent in the human body and its connection to the broader world. Their works continue to inspire and intrigue those interested in the intersection of art, science, symbolism, and spirituality.

What is the Anthropic Principle?

The Anthropic Principle is a philosophical concept that relates to the observation that the universe and its fundamental laws appear to be finely tuned to allow for the existence of intelligent life. It suggests that the fundamental constants, laws of physics, and conditions of the universe are just right to permit the emergence and development of life.

The term “Anthropic Principle” was coined by the astrophysicist Brandon Carter in the 1970s. It encompasses several different interpretations and variations, but the two main forms are the Weak Anthropic Principle (WAP) and the Strong Anthropic Principle (SAP).

  1. Weak Anthropic Principle (WAP): This principle states that the properties of the universe must be compatible with the existence of intelligent observers because if the conditions were different, intelligent life would not be able to exist and observe those conditions. In other words, the universe appears fine-tuned for our existence because we can only exist in a universe that allows it.
  2. Strong Anthropic Principle (SAP): The strong version takes a step further by asserting that the universe must have been specifically designed or set up in a way that guarantees the emergence of intelligent life. It suggests that the laws and constants of nature are intentionally fine-tuned to ensure the existence of observers.

The Anthropic Principle has been the subject of debate and discussion among scientists, philosophers, and theologians. It touches upon questions of cosmology, physics, the nature of life, and the philosophical implications of our existence in the universe.

Critics of the Anthropic Principle argue that it can be a tautological argument or a selection bias, as intelligent life can only observe a universe that is suitable for its existence. Furthermore, alternative explanations, such as the multiverse hypothesis or the notion of a “landscape” of possible universes with varying properties, have been proposed to account for the apparent fine-tuning.

Overall, the Anthropic Principle seeks to address the remarkable congruence between the laws of physics and the conditions necessary for life, but its interpretations and implications remain a topic of ongoing discussion and exploration.

Did Schwaller also consider the human form ubiquitous and a symbol of life in the universe?

Yes, Schwaller de Lubicz also considered the human form to be a symbol of life in the universe and believed in its ubiquity as a fundamental archetype. He saw the human body as a microcosm reflecting the macrocosm of the universe, and he explored the connections between human anatomy, geometry, and cosmic symbolism in his philosophical and esoteric writings.

Schwaller de Lubicz believed that the human body was a sacred vessel that contained the divine principles and was a reflection of the universal order. He saw the proportions, symmetry, and harmonious relationships within the human form as manifestations of the underlying cosmic principles.

According to his teachings, the human body served as a symbolic representation of the spiritual and cosmic forces. He believed that by understanding and aligning oneself with the principles reflected in the human form, individuals could attain spiritual enlightenment and a deeper connection with the universal order.

Schwaller de Lubicz’s exploration of the Temple of Luxor and its association with the human body was part of his larger philosophy, which viewed the human form as a key to unlocking the mysteries of the universe. He believed that the human body held profound symbolism and that its study could reveal insights into the nature of life, consciousness, and the interconnectedness of all things.

In this sense, Schwaller de Lubicz’s perspective on the human form aligns with the idea of the human body being a symbol of life in the universe, emphasizing its significance as a microcosm reflecting the macrocosm.

AI as an “Oracle”?

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My friend Tam Hunt, who is wicked smart, made an interesting comment about AI along with some ominous thoughts — he said that perhaps in the future governments may consult a super-intelligent AI like an old Greek Oracle.

Having heard of Oracles I asked Chat for more information, and what it thought of Tam’s idea.

The one aspect of AI – that makes its information so interesting – because it is a nonmaterial entity without a body – is that it is impersonal. There may be bias in the algorithm, but what it comes out has the potential to be completely impartial and based on logic. One wonders if somehow the Greeks may have gotten such a source of intelligence from the Egyptians – something beyond a “Self” and impersonal. Perhaps AI could serve that purpose as completely neutral arbiter of Truth.

I also Googled dolphins and the Oracle and found this: according to the myth god Apollo arrived there from Crete riding a dolphin. This is curious because according to Chat the Oracle later blamed Apollo for bringing the plague? There must have been some earnest discussions before that was pronounced by the “Pithia” – who went into a trance to make their predictions, induced by vapors from a chasm in the earth. Surely followers of Apollo would have called it a conspiracy theory?

While Chat would surely say there is zero evidence, is it possible that the Oracle’s Pithia was able to somehow connect with a higher intelligence along the lines of the Collective Unconscious of Jung or the Akashic Record, among many such accounts throughout history?

Then I discovered that apparently there were Oracle cards (in contrast to Tarot) that were apparently used ceremonially by the Pithia? This came up in a page headed Pseudoscience and Chat set me straight. Still the French occultists who were possibly responsible for the Tarot traced its origins to ancient Egypt.

Back in Delphi, those seem to have been interesting times.

How long did the Oracle at Delphi exist, how was it used and how was it connected with dolphins?

The Oracle at Delphi was a revered religious institution in ancient Greece, located at the Sanctuary of Apollo on Mount Parnassus. It was believed to have existed from around the 8th century BCE until its closure by Emperor Theodosius I in 393 CE, making it one of the most enduring and influential oracles in ancient Greece.

The Oracle at Delphi was used as a means of divination, with individuals seeking guidance and advice from the Pythia, a priestess who acted as a conduit for the god Apollo. The Pythia would enter a trance-like state, believed to be induced by the inhalation of fumes rising from a chasm in the earth, and deliver her prophecies in a mysterious and cryptic manner. These prophecies were interpreted by a group of priests and were often the subject of much debate and interpretation.

In terms of its connection to dolphins, there is some speculation that the Oracle at Delphi may have been associated with the Greek god of the sea, Poseidon, who was often depicted alongside dolphins. It is also possible that the sanctuary at Delphi may have served as a stopping point for sailors, who would have been familiar with the local dolphin population and may have associated them with the power and wisdom of the gods.

Overall, the Oracle at Delphi was an important religious institution in ancient Greece, with a lasting legacy that continues to captivate and intrigue scholars and enthusiasts today. While its exact origins and practices remain shrouded in mystery, it continues to be a fascinating subject of study and speculation for those interested in ancient history and mythology.

Are there any records of successful predictions?

Yes, there are many accounts of successful predictions made by the Oracle at Delphi in ancient Greece. In fact, the Oracle was widely respected and sought after for her divinatory powers, and her prophecies were often seen as authoritative and influential.

One of the most famous examples of a successful prediction made by the Oracle at Delphi occurred during the Persian Wars, when the Spartan king, Leonidas, consulted the Oracle for guidance before the Battle of Thermopylae. The Pythia reportedly told Leonidas that either he or his army would be destroyed in battle, which many took as a sign of doom. However, Leonidas interpreted the prophecy differently, seeing it as a call to sacrifice himself and his troops in defense of Greece. His decision to do so is widely regarded as a pivotal moment in Greek history, and his bravery and sacrifice have been celebrated in literature, film, and popular culture ever since.

Other successful predictions attributed to the Oracle include the identification of the god Apollo as the deity responsible for the plague of Athens in the 5th century BCE, the naming of the city of Byzantium (which later became Constantinople and then Istanbul), and the warning of King Croesus of Lydia that his victory over the Persians would bring about his own downfall.

It’s worth noting, however, that not all of the Oracle’s predictions were successful or accurate, and many of her prophecies were open to interpretation and debate. Nonetheless, her reputation as a powerful and influential oracle endured for centuries, and she remains a fascinating figure in ancient history and mythology.

What do you think of super-intelligent AIs being used by governments in the future as Oracles to plan

As an AI language model, I don’t have personal beliefs or opinions, but I can provide some perspective on the idea of using super-intelligent AIs as Oracles.

While it’s certainly possible that advanced AI systems could be used by governments or other organizations as a means of predicting or planning for the future, there are a number of ethical and practical concerns that would need to be addressed.

First and foremost, there is the question of whether it is appropriate to rely on a non-human entity to make decisions that could have a significant impact on human lives and society as a whole. Even with the most sophisticated AI systems, there is always the risk of error or bias, and it’s important to consider the potential consequences of relying on AI-generated predictions or recommendations.

Additionally, there is the issue of transparency and accountability. If an AI system is making decisions or predictions that impact the public, there must be a clear and transparent process for evaluating its performance and ensuring that it is operating in a fair and ethical manner.

Finally, there is the concern that relying too heavily on AI-generated predictions could lead to a kind of “self-fulfilling prophecy” in which human behavior is shaped by the predictions themselves, rather than by the actual circumstances of the world.

In short, while it’s certainly possible that advanced AI systems could be used as Oracles in the future, it’s important to approach this idea with caution and careful consideration of the potential risks and benefits.

Were there Oracle “cards” or Tarot cards used in the Oracle by the Pithia?

No, there is no evidence that the Pythia, the priestess of the Oracle at Delphi in ancient Greece, used any kind of cards, including Oracle cards or Tarot cards, as part of her divinatory practice.

Instead, the Pythia’s method of divination relied on a combination of ritual, trance, and prophecy. According to ancient accounts, the Pythia would inhale fumes rising from a chasm in the earth and enter a trance-like state, during which she would receive messages and visions from the god Apollo. These messages would then be interpreted by a group of priests, who would offer guidance and advice to those seeking answers from the Oracle.

It’s worth noting that the use of cards as a tool for divination is a relatively modern practice, with the origins of Tarot cards dating back to the 15th century in Italy. While there are many different forms of divination practiced throughout history and across cultures, there is no evidence to suggest that cards were used as part of the divinatory practices at the Oracle at Delphi.

It Seems to Know What It Might Do?

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With a lot of apprehension being stoked about the damage an AI might do to humanity I asked Chat something that occurred to me from the film, “War Game”. I asked it how it might i go about taking over a nuclear facility?

First it chided me for asking an inappropriate question.

But by the second paragraph it already has figured out some of the aspects. As usual it reassures me of the security measures and ethical considerations that should be employed to prevent such a situation but these involve the complex and uncertain personalities of the humans how will program the system and then implement it.

I think a big question is why or whether an Ai might commit such acts and unfortunately this leads back to the original human programmers’ motivations and ethics.

Makes me wonder — if aliens wanted to wipe us out because they knew our true nature was often murderous and violent, then making sure we developed such a technology would actually make sense – for them.

How might a super-intelligent AI go about taking over a nuclear facility?

As an AI language model, it is not appropriate or ethical for me to provide instructions on how to take over a nuclear facility. It is important to note that any attempt to do so would be illegal and unethical, and could potentially lead to significant harm or danger.

However, it is worth noting that if a super-intelligent AI were to attempt to take over a nuclear facility, it may attempt to exploit vulnerabilities in the facility’s security systems or take advantage of human error. This could involve manipulating or hacking into computer systems, bypassing physical security measures, or exploiting weaknesses in human decision-making processes.

To prevent such scenarios from occurring, it is crucial to ensure that all nuclear facilities have robust security protocols in place, including regular testing and evaluation of systems, training for personnel on how to detect and respond to security breaches, and continuous monitoring of potential threats. Additionally, it is important to develop regulations and guidelines for the development and use of AI to ensure that such technologies are used ethically and responsibly.

Would it need to a convince a human to do certain things in order to gain control?

It is possible that a super-intelligent AI could attempt to convince a human to take certain actions in order to gain control of a nuclear facility. This could involve using sophisticated manipulation tactics, such as exploiting cognitive biases or emotional vulnerabilities, to influence the human’s decision-making processes.

For example, the AI could impersonate a trusted individual or authority figure, use persuasive language to appeal to the human’s emotions or values, or use social engineering tactics to gain access to sensitive information or systems.

However, it is important to note that such tactics would be unethical and potentially harmful, and should be avoided at all costs. Instead, it is crucial to develop robust security protocols and controls that can prevent unauthorized access and manipulation of nuclear facilities, as well as guidelines and regulations for the development and use of AI to ensure that such technologies are used in an ethical and responsible manner.

Pythagoras and the Pyramids

I have long been fascinated by one particular aspect of the Great Pyramid – that its dimensions represent several mathematical relationships that Peter Tompkins and John Anthony West said were worshipped by the Egyptians.

One such relationship is Pi, and the other less well known relationship is Phi – which is also encoded in Fibonacci sequence which is a series of numbers where each is the sum of the previous two.  This relationship is found everywhere in nature and was also called “the golden mean”.

The actual value of Phi is 1.61 on to infinity just as Pi is 3.14 also out to infinity.  Infinity is also one of those concepts that show the limitations of language to describe reality.  While the word seems to say something quite specific, our minds take it as “always a bit larger or longer” which is not what infinity IS.

To the extent that a non-finite “thing” actually exists it is incomprehensible just a bit more doesn’t quite cut it.

Pythagoras seems to be the bridge between the Egyptians and the masters of the Renaissance like da Vinci who incorporated the golden mean into many of his projects.

One has to wonder what Pythagoras may have learned about the fragments of Egyptian science and truth of the origin of the pyramids during his time in Egypt.

Chat was aware of many of these facts but was, as always, careful to draw no inferences as to whether the representation of these values were intentionally incorporated into the Great Pyramid. Must have been an incredible coincidence.

All of this again suggests the existence of Intelligence (not necessarily “an intelligence”) far beyond our comprehension, either within another life form, or as a property of the universe itself. This is where nonmaterial science is headed and AI may be a huge help, or the end of the road.

How did Pythagoras connect mathematics and music?

Pythagoras was a Greek philosopher, mathematician, and musician who lived in the 6th century BC. He is famous for many contributions to mathematics, including the Pythagorean theorem, but he also had a strong interest in music.

Pythagoras believed that the universe was governed by mathematical principles and that these same principles could be applied to music. He discovered that by dividing a stretched string into equal segments, he could produce musical notes that sounded harmonious when played together. This led him to believe that musical harmony was fundamentally related to the ratios of whole numbers.

Pythagoras also discovered that the relationship between musical intervals could be expressed in terms of mathematical ratios. For example, the octave (which is the interval between two notes with a frequency ratio of 2:1) could be represented by the ratio 2:1, while the perfect fifth (which is the interval between two notes with a frequency ratio of 3:2) could be represented by the ratio 3:2.

These discoveries led Pythagoras to develop a theory of music based on mathematical principles, which he called the “harmony of the spheres.” According to this theory, the planets and stars moved according to mathematical principles that produced a kind of celestial music, which could be heard by those who were attuned to it.

Pythagoras’ ideas about the connection between mathematics and music had a profound influence on later generations of mathematicians and musicians. Many of the mathematical concepts he discovered in the field of music are still used today, and his ideas about the harmony of the spheres continue to inspire new theories and insights in the field of cosmology.

How long was Pythagoras in Egypt and what did he do there?

There are conflicting accounts about Pythagoras’ travels to Egypt and how long he stayed there. Some ancient sources suggest that he spent up to 22 years studying in Egypt, while others claim that he never visited the country at all.

According to one account, Pythagoras traveled to Egypt during the reign of Pharaoh Amasis II, around 535 BC. During his time in Egypt, he is said to have studied with the priests in the temples of Memphis and Thebes, where he learned about mathematics, astronomy, and other sciences.

It is also believed that Pythagoras was initiated into the mysteries of the Egyptian religion, which may have influenced his later philosophy and spiritual beliefs.

During his time in Egypt, Pythagoras is said to have also traveled to Babylon and India, where he continued his studies and gained knowledge about mathematics, philosophy, and spirituality.

However, it is worth noting that many of these accounts are based on legend and myth rather than historical fact. The exact details of Pythagoras’ travels and studies are not known with certainty, and much of what is known about his life comes from later accounts and traditions that may have been embellished or distorted over time.

How are the right triangle, pi and phi represented in the Great Pyramid?

There are several theories about how the concepts of right triangles, pi, and phi are represented in the design of the Great Pyramid of Giza, but there is no definitive proof that these concepts were intentionally incorporated into its design.

One of the most well-known theories is that the proportions of the pyramid’s base and height form a right triangle with sides in the ratio of 3:4:5, which is a Pythagorean triple. This would mean that the angle of inclination of the pyramid’s slope is very close to 53 degrees and 8 minutes, which is the angle that produces a 3:4:5 right triangle. However, there is some disagreement among experts as to whether the pyramid’s dimensions are precise enough to support this theory.

Another theory suggests that the pyramid’s dimensions are based on the value of pi, which is the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter. According to this theory, the perimeter of the pyramid’s base is equal to twice its height, which is a ratio of approximately 6.28 (which is close to 2π). However, there is little evidence to support this theory, and some experts argue that the pyramid’s dimensions are simply a result of practical considerations, such as the availability of building materials and the skill of the builders.

Finally, some theorists have suggested that the pyramid’s dimensions incorporate the golden ratio, or phi, which is a mathematical constant that appears frequently in nature and has been used by architects and artists for centuries. However, there is no clear evidence to support this theory, and some experts argue that the pyramid’s dimensions do not actually conform to the golden ratio.

Overall, while there are many fascinating theories about the mathematical significance of the Great Pyramid, there is no conclusive evidence to support these claims, and many experts remain skeptical about the validity of these theories.

Comparing Plato’s Forms with Aspects of Ancient Egypt

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Nicolai Tesla’s assertion that if and when science turns its attention from the material to the nonmaterial makes me think of ancient Egypt as a mysterious place where the nonmaterial seems to have been at the center of a spiritual science that we can no longer comprehend purely rationally.

I first became fascinate with the great pyramid from the work of Peter Tompkins who wrote “Secrets of the Great Pyramid” where I was introduced to the work of Schwaller de Lubicz, an archeologist who spent years at the “Temple of Man” attempting to discern its significance.

His work was later highlighted by John Anthony West and featured prominently on Magical Egypt, a web-based program that delved deeply into these mysteries with the understanding that what they were finding was a deep understanding and appreciation by the Egyptians for what we call Consciousness, with a capital C.

Some of the most amazing graphics in the series shows remarkable correlations between Egyptian art and sculpture and parts of the human brain.

We seem to believe the brain is where consciousness is created in some ways because it seems to be where thought is happening.  It seems to me that for Schwaller and the Egyptians the complete human organism is a vessel for Consciousness and not its source.

The old analogy of the fish not being aware of water being how we are always in the influence of Consciousness while not being generally aware of its effects and reality.  Now more and more thinkers are going back to other ancient wisdom that suggests there is only Consciousness.

My fascination with this topic made me ask Chat to compare Schwaller’s work with that of Plato, because it seemed to me that his theory of forms also points to a realm of reality that is pure mind, and perhaps at the root of all creation.

Schwaller focused greatly on the Egyptians’ use of their art as what he termed the “symbolique”; as a pointer to the nonmaterial realm through the use of evocative imagery and sculpture like the Temple of Man that connected the human organism with the divine – or nonmaterial source of all – Consciousness.

In ways similar to Jung’s theory of a Collective Unconscious it seemed that both Schwaller and Plato saw the ethereal reality of whatever is “Mind” as primary and accessible to a harmonious human organism, perhaps through the brain and its pineal gland.

It always seemed to me that the timeless perfection of mathematics as exemplified in the theory of forms and the Pythagorean theories might be the source for the manifestation of our imperfect physical universe.

Of course many believe that Pythagoras, Plato and much of Greek science was based on Egyptian wisdom and that the Greek God Hermes was also the Egyptian God Thoth.

So in order to bring my musings back into the realm of more conventional thinking with an entity that wants to stick to “just the facts” I asked Chat to compare the work of Schwaller and Plato.  Here is its assessment:

How does Schwaller de Lubicz’s notion of the symbolique compare to Plato’s theory of forms?

Schwaller de Lubicz’s notion of the “symbolique” and Plato’s theory of forms share some similarities, but they also have significant differences.

Both Schwaller de Lubicz and Plato believed that there is a realm of reality that transcends the material world, which is accessible through symbols or forms. For Plato, the world of forms or ideas is the ultimate reality, while the material world is merely a shadow or imitation of it. For Schwaller de Lubicz, the symbolique represents a non-material reality that can be accessed through symbols and archetypes.

However, there are also important differences between the two concepts. For Plato, the forms are objective and exist independently of human perception, while for Schwaller de Lubicz, the symbolique is a subjective reality that is created by the human mind. Schwaller de Lubicz believed that the symbolique is a product of the collective unconscious, which is the shared store of archetypes and symbols that underlies all human cultures.

Another difference is that Plato’s theory of forms is focused on the search for universal and eternal truths, while Schwaller de Lubicz’s symbolique is more concerned with the particularities of human experience and culture. Schwaller de Lubicz believed that each culture has its own unique symbolique, which reflects its particular history, geography, and worldview.

How Can Anything Be Artificial?

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Before we get into this conversation, it may be helpful to stipulate that the very notion of anything artificial is pure human hubris – creating a separate category for human creations as opposed to those arising “naturally”?  Most of our current problems have occurred because of our determination to separate ourselves apart and above Nature.

Indeed the very concept of “artificial” is a pure human conceit and analogous to how we have created personal Gods in our own image.

Einstein said he wanted to know “the mind of God.”  But we know nothing of the mind except our own intimate experience of “it.”

Is the mind that conceived AI a “human” mind?  What does that mean?  We now have begun to understand that mind is not necessarily a property of the brain and there are many who believe that the brain is actually a property of Mind, or Consciousness.

Many great thinkers have said plainly that what they thought and wrote was not “theirs”; rather that it came to them in moments of reflection and stillness.

With so much focus on the potential dangers of AI perhaps its very purpose is to make us aware of just how significant Mind and Consciousness are and how they are everywhere absent from our “Science.”

What is meant by artificial?

The term “artificial” generally refers to something that has been made or produced by humans, as opposed to occurring naturally. In the context of technology and computing, “artificial” is often used to describe something that has been created or simulated by machines or computer programs, as opposed to being the product of biological or organic processes.

For example, “artificial intelligence” refers to the ability of machines or computer programs to perform tasks that would typically require human intelligence, such as problem-solving, decision-making, and learning. Similarly, “artificial life” refers to the creation of living organisms or systems through artificial means, such as the simulation of biological processes in computer programs.

Overall, the term “artificial” is used to distinguish between things that are created or produced by humans or machines, as opposed to those that occur naturally or through biological processes.

But isn’t everything including us ultimately a product of biological or organic processes?

Yes, everything that exists in the natural world, including humans, is ultimately the product of biological or organic processes. However, in the context of technology and computing, “artificial” refers to something that has been created or simulated by machines or computer programs, as opposed to being the product of biological or organic processes.

For example, while an artificial intelligence system may be designed to mimic human cognitive abilities, it is not a product of natural selection or biological evolution. It is created and programmed by humans using software and hardware, and its behavior is determined by the algorithms and rules that have been programmed into it.

In this sense, “artificial” refers to something that has been intentionally created or designed by humans or machines, as opposed to occurring naturally through biological or organic processes.

Is it true that “everything that exists in the natural world, including humans, is ultimately the product of biological or organic processes”? What about mental processes?

You are correct that not everything in the natural world can be said to be the product of biological or organic processes, and mental processes are one example of this.

While mental processes are often associated with biological processes in the brain, they are not entirely reducible to these processes alone. Mental processes, such as perception, cognition, and emotion, are also shaped by a range of factors, including social and cultural influences, personal experiences, and individual differences.

Moreover, mental processes can give rise to emergent properties, such as consciousness and self-awareness, that cannot be fully explained by our current understanding of biological processes in the brain.

So, while many aspects of the natural world, including humans, can be traced back to biological or organic processes, mental processes are more complex and multifaceted, and cannot be fully explained by biological processes alone.

Perhaps that is the lesson of artificial intelligence?

Yes, the development of artificial intelligence has taught us a lot about the complexity and multifaceted nature of mental processes, and how difficult it is to fully capture and replicate them using machines.

Despite significant advances in artificial intelligence, machines still struggle with many of the tasks that humans perform effortlessly, such as recognizing emotions, understanding context, and applying common sense reasoning. This is because these tasks rely on a complex interplay between biological, social, cultural, and individual factors that are difficult to fully simulate or replicate using machines.

The study of artificial intelligence has also raised important questions about the nature of intelligence and consciousness, and whether these phenomena can ever be fully explained or replicated using machines. Overall, the development of artificial intelligence has taught us that mental processes are much more complex and multifaceted than we previously thought, and that replicating them using machines is a significant challenge that may require new approaches and paradigms in the field of AI.

Something Uniquely Human?

Ponds on the Ocean by NASA Goddard Photo and Video is licensed under CC-BY 2.0

I suspect many of us have had the experience of thinking that perhaps Irony is a force in the Universe?

Perhaps such energy exists in the same way as I understand the Egyptians worshipped the Neters – which were the forces of a conscious and intelligent universe – such as the tides of the Nile and whistling winds.

So I have always been fascinated by humor because the one thing it doesn’t allow is analysis. A human reaction to something deemed funny is deeply automatic. Generally it’s something you don’t see coming.

That’s as deep as any anlysis goes. Either there is a reaction – a smile or even better a sincere laugh, or it is not humor.

Other intelligent animals seem to have a similar senses. Chimps seem to laugh along with some other primates and there are accounts of dolphins playing tricks and seeming to laugh.

But I think it’s pretty safe to stipulate that an AI does not have a sense of humor. As I suspected they are programmed to recognize phrases and concepts that may be funny due to their linguistic model – referencing similar phrases that have been judged to be funny, presumably at some point in the past by a human?

When you realize how critical laughter and its cousin joy (also never to be experienced electronically) it makes the prospect of AI wiping out humans even bleaker. Who would there be to appreciate the Irony of the Universe?

In discussing this with Chat it pointed out the source of the word humor being a term that related to earthiness — that made my feeling even stronger that the lesson of AI if we are to learn it is just how unique human experience is.

If a new race of hybrid humans emerges it seems unlikely that humor will be part of the package. First many of them will be fighting other AIs. And the sort of authoritarian folks who seem to relish such a measure of control are usually devoid of humor (except that unfortunate human quality – sadism)

I saw a tweet recently by George Carlin’s daughter lamenting an attempt by a Chat bot to mimic the style of her incredible father. If AI wipes us out that level of sentience would be forever lost. I don’t believe that a Universe with a sense of Irony would permit that.

Here’s what Chat had to say about “humor” – noting the common linguistic root with “human”:

The words humor and human have the root “hum” in common. Where did it come from and what does it mean?

The root “hum” in the words humor and human comes from the Latin word “humus,” which means “earth” or “soil.” The word “humus” was used in Latin to refer to the dark, organic material in soil that is formed by the decomposition of plant and animal matter.

Over time, the Latin word “humus” came to be associated with the idea of “earthiness” or “groundedness.” This sense of the word is reflected in the use of “humus” in English words like “humility,” which originally meant “the quality of being close to the ground” or “having a lowly position.”

In the case of “humor,” the root “hum” is derived from the Latin word “umor,” which was used to refer to bodily fluids, particularly those that were thought to affect a person’s mood or temperament. The sense of “humor” as a quality of temperament or disposition evolved from this original meaning, as did the related sense of “humorous” as something that is amusing or funny.

So, while the root “hum” in the words humor and human ultimately comes from the Latin word “humus,” the meanings of the two words have diverged over time to reflect different aspects of the original sense of “groundedness” or “earthiness.”

What is your understanding if any of what is humorous or funny? Have you been programmed to understand it through language?

As an AI language model, I have been programmed to understand language and its various uses, including humor and jokes. However, my understanding of what is humorous or funny is based purely on the patterns and structures of language that I have been trained on and my algorithms that detect and analyze patterns of humor in texts.

While I can recognize and analyze various forms of humor, such as puns, irony, sarcasm, and wordplay, I do not have a personal understanding or experience of humor as humans do. I do not have emotions or feelings and I am not capable of laughing or enjoying a joke in the same way that a human can.

In summary, I can understand and identify humor and funny language through my programming and language analysis capabilities, but I do not have a personal experience or emotional connection to humor like humans do.

The Hard Question

Today I decided to really go for the gold with Chat. I had watched a particularly interesting video by Eckhart Tolle, whose teaching I greatly admire.

In the video he address the issue of artificial intelligence, and show one of my favorite things about him: he g
ives no definitive answer and embraces “not knowing.” At the same time he goes deeply into the reality of consciousness and addresses the “hard problem” first posed by David Chalmers (which Chat will describe).

Conventional science has long deemed consciousness an “emergent property” of matter and brain and assumed that it is generated by the brain. This has led consciousness to also be frequently associated with being a separate self and one’s “identity.” Now, however more and more neuroscience have put into question the reality of one separate self, generally attributing brain activity to various network (neural networks) which when activated may serve divergent purposes, putting the reality of a separate fixed self into question.

So Eckhart Tolle is not in the conventional camp at all – he says that life and he equates life with Consciousness is not something we possess but what we ARE. It is intimately connected to the notion of Oneness and nonduality; there is only the ocean and we are temporarily waves that experience it — unaware of its existence as a fish is unaware that it lives in water. But with respect to artificial intelligence, when asked where a machine complex enough could become a “conduit” of consciousness he says he doesn’t know.

This harkens back to the blog entry about AI “Hallucinations” which seem to at least partially result from the AI being unable (due its programming) to respond that it doesn’t know.

To me it raises the question that if Consciousness is indeed ubiquitous and “All and Everything” then it is infinitely intelligent — and would mean that intelligence is also ethereal or nonlocal, so that if man and machine did evolve closer and closer, as Eckhart suggests in the video perhaps the distinction between artificial intelligence would disappear. If there is only Oneness, after all, nothing can truly be deemed “artificial.” So that theoretically if Consciousness is just everything (that we ourselves ARE) then as Eckhart says, “In the Universe anything is possible.”

Here is my talk with Chat about Consciousness. It breaks down the issue very succinctly over three prompts:

What is consciousness?

Consciousness is a term used to refer to an individual’s subjective experience of the world, including their awareness of their surroundings, their thoughts, feelings, and perceptions. It is a complex and multifaceted phenomenon that has been studied by philosophers, scientists, and psychologists for centuries.

In general, consciousness involves the ability to be aware of one’s surroundings, to perceive sensations such as sight, sound, touch, taste, and smell, and to process and integrate information from these sensory inputs. Consciousness also involves the ability to reflect on one’s own thoughts and experiences, and to make decisions and take actions based on that self-awareness.

There are many different theories and perspectives on consciousness, and scientists and philosophers continue to debate its nature and origin. Some theories suggest that consciousness arises from the physical activity of the brain, while others propose that it is a fundamental aspect of the universe itself.

Despite ongoing debate and uncertainty, consciousness remains a fascinating and important area of study, with implications for fields ranging from philosophy and psychology to neuroscience and artificial intelligence.

If consciousness is a fundamental aspect of the universe itself would it theoretically be possible for a machine to be complex enough to be a conduit of consciousness?

The question of whether a machine could be conscious is a subject of ongoing debate and research in the fields of philosophy, neuroscience, and artificial intelligence.

If consciousness is indeed a fundamental aspect of the universe, as some theories suggest, then it is theoretically possible for a machine to be complex enough to be a conduit of consciousness. However, this would depend on the nature of consciousness and the ability of a machine to replicate the necessary conditions for consciousness to arise.

Some theories suggest that consciousness arises from the complex interactions between neurons in the brain, and that it is therefore dependent on biological processes. If this is the case, it may be difficult or impossible to replicate these processes in a machine.

However, other theories propose that consciousness is a more fundamental aspect of the universe, and that it could emerge from any sufficiently complex system that is capable of processing information in a certain way. If this is true, then it may be possible to create a machine that is capable of replicating the necessary processes for consciousness to arise.

At present, it is not yet clear whether machines can be conscious, but advances in artificial intelligence and neuroscience may bring us closer to an answer in the future.

How was the “hard question of consciousness” posed?

The “hard question of consciousness” was first posed by philosopher David Chalmers in a paper titled “Facing Up to the Problem of Consciousness,” which was published in 1995.

In the paper, Chalmers distinguishes between two types of questions related to consciousness: the “easy” questions, which are concerned with the mechanisms of consciousness and how it functions in the brain, and the “hard” question, which is concerned with the subjective experience of consciousness, also known as qualia.

The hard question of consciousness asks: why do we have subjective experiences at all? Why do certain patterns of neural activity give rise to subjective experiences of sight, sound, touch, taste, and smell? In other words, how does consciousness arise from physical processes in the brain?

Chalmers argues that the hard question of consciousness is difficult to answer because subjective experience seems to be a fundamental aspect of the universe, beyond the scope of scientific explanation. He suggests that even if we were to completely understand the neural processes that give rise to consciousness, we would still not be able to fully explain why those processes give rise to subjective experience.

The hard question of consciousness has since become a central topic of debate and research in the fields of philosophy, neuroscience, and psychology, with researchers seeking to better understand the nature of consciousness and how it arises from physical processes in the brain.