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Thread by @BenCKinney: "Next up for me at SoCIA18 is “The Time of Life” by Jason Howard. Temporal naturalism vs timeless naturalism? We'll explore those terms now. […]" #SoCIA18

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Next up for me at #SoCIA18 is “The Time of Life” by Jason Howard. Temporal naturalism vs timeless naturalism? We'll explore those terms now. Forward!
Timeless Naturalism holds that experience of moments/passage is illusion. Doesn't deny the appearance of time, only its importance. If you unroll a carpet, the pattern is already set, the unrolling is not causative.
Apparent flow of time creates no novelty, complexty, or diversity. It all comes down to other physical laws.
Case for this: laws of physics are time-symmetric. Time is observer-relative, and not objectively "measurable." All structure (biotic & abiotic) is explicable in terms of entropy: temporary complexity appears along that pathway.
Counterpoint: the current "cooled-down" universe underlies why the universe has various parameters. If laws of nature are timeless, they's nothing to explain why they have the values they do.
Temporal Naturalism holds that reality exists at a single moment in time. Best understood as differential change (heterogeneity of change). Past consists of once-real moments, future is not-yet-real (no facts correspond to it).
Temporal Naturalism entails one single cosmic timeline, irreversible and continuous. Time itself isn't an entity, but is a non-emergent (irreducible) description of causal relationships.
Time be the only irreducible phenomenon? Everything undergoes transformative change on SOME timespan.
I think I would interpret this as "time is real because it is a description of cause-and-effect." (Whew! This talk is dense & swift, but I think I'm holding on.)
Time and the emergence of life: "Life" as an emergent phenomenon as abotic possibilities/realities or organization expand to include self-propogating stuff.
This is heady stuff but contains a LOT of jargon and I am definitely missing parts.
Physics is lacking a theory of self-constructing organization? Life is sortof just the creation of constraints that channel order into work (to enable self-propagation).
The proper arrow of time may be the increasing complexity of molecules/morphologies/species (rather than thermodynamic entropy). An upward arrow rather than downward!
Is life the result of rare luck (breaking normal flows of entropy), or inevitable? Go bigger: is emergence of a biosphere unlikely, or inevitable? What are the historical contingencies/dynamics of living systems?
Conclusion: "Tenseless" versions of time (timelessness) is common in physics but doesn't mesh well with biology. Whereas temporalism suggests that life is a natural/inevitable phenomenon in the universe?
I feel like this was super fundamental important stuff, but I understood about 40% of it.
Q&A contains mention of a theory called Unmotivated Growing Hunk. Which basically says the past is real, present is real, next few minutes are real/determined, but not beyond that. (Me, I just like the name.)
I dare you to google Unmotivated Growing Hunk.
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