Special relativity implies eternalism.
Before I tell you what special relativity says, I must get you to respect special relativity. If you do not respect special relativity, then it becomes easy to view it as an abstract plaything of theoretical physicists who have nothing better to do than come up with complicated mathematical frameworks.
Special relativity implies a wide range of consequences, which have been experimentally verified, including length contraction, time dilation, relativistic mass, mass–energy equivalence, a universal speed limit and relativity of simultaneity.
That means that in order to deny eternalism, which is implied by special relativity through relativity of simultaneity, you will need to deny one of two things:
- That Special Relativity is true (in which case you deny that GPS exists, for one thing)
- That Empiricism should be valued
Relativity of simultaneity means that different reference frames physically disagree about the simultaneity of events:
This leads to eternalism. There is no global now sweeping forward as was imagined when Newtonian mechanics reigned supreme:
Instead, relativity of simultaneity reveals that there is an eternal fabric composed of relative reference frames:
You might have heard that quantum mechanics and general relativity have not yet been fully reconciled into a Grand Unified Theory. This might cause you to suspect that whatever is implied by special relativity is tentative. However, special relativity has been unified with quantum mechanics in quantum field theory. The implications of special relativity are readily observable, and have been experimentally verified.
You should therefore think of base reality as one static, unchanging object in which all its contents remain forever. This includes the contents that are your conscious experience if conscious experience is wholly physical.
Consciousness is physical.
At one point, people imagined that you were an immaterial soul piloting a material body in a material world.
Then we realized that emotions, speech, sight, hearing, sensation, correlate with functions in the brain.
So people did this:
However, there is no locus in the brain for an observer and no global now to push it forward.
This means that the events creating consciousness are spread out in spacetime. We shouldn’t think about the colors “matter” and “non-matter.” Instead think about fitting relations between eternal events.
All the events leading to experiences are, just, there.
When these distributed events add up into complex self-models, experience results. This is always happening since there is no time ticking forward in a preferred frame of reference or universal frame of reference.
People moments arise from processing events inscribed in relativity’s eternity.
If we follow Occam’s Razor, instead of assuming intuitive boundaries, it follows that people can be built on top of people at varying degrees of integration. There is no sequential nature to experience except when eternal events fit into the eternal events that are subjective time. This explains the paradoxes that would otherwise result from considering thought experiments such as connecting two brain halves.
Intelligence is physical.
Intelligence in an agent is defined as the ability to create complex configurations while navigating a complex environment. The more complex the futures it can willfully choose from, and the more complex it’s environment, the more intelligence the agent has.
Since intelligence exists with regard to a future, we are now considering an agent which has casual efficacy restricted by the speed of light from the starting point, t=0. Any intelligent agent, as usually defined, can only affect its future light cone even if the experiences resulting from its actions harvest the happenings in the past light cone.
There is no reason to think that intelligence ends anywhere near Ramanujan’s cortex. Humans are anti-entropic systems boot loaded by a sub-optimal process of blind natural selection. Humanity is less blind than natural selection and is capable of more cleanly funneling negentropy into intelligence.
Like with any other property, there exists a limit to intelligence.
The World Is BIG
One might suspect that the highest intelligence may never be reached if humans go extinct. However, this fear assumes that we don’t exist in a multiverse. This assumption contradicts modern cosmology and theoretical physics.
Accordingly, an infinite universe will contain an infinite number of Hubble volumes, all having the same physical laws and physical constants. In regard to configurations such as the distribution of matter, almost all will differ from our Hubble volume. However, because there are infinitely many, far beyond the cosmological horizon, there will eventually be Hubble volumes with similar, and even identical, configurations. Tegmark estimates that an identical volume to ours should be about 1010115 meters away from us.
Given infinite space, there would, in fact, be an infinite number of Hubble volumes identical to ours in the universe. This follows directly from the cosmological principle, wherein it is assumed that our Hubble volume is not special or unique.
In the chaotic inflation theory, which is a variant of the cosmic inflation theory, the multiverse or space as a whole is stretching and will continue doing so forever, but some regions of space stop stretching and form distinct bubbles (like gas pockets in a loaf of rising bread). Such bubbles are embryonic level I multiverses.
In brief, one aspect of quantum mechanics is that certain observations cannot be predicted absolutely. Instead, there is a range of possible observations, each with a different probability. According to the MWI, each of these possible observations corresponds to a different universe. Suppose a six-sided die is thrown and that the result of the throw corresponds to a quantum mechanics observable. All six possible ways the die can fall correspond to six different universes.
Tegmark argues that a Level III multiverse does not contain more possibilities in the Hubble volume than a Level I or Level II multiverse. In effect, all the different “worlds” created by “splits” in a Level III multiverse with the same physical constants can be found in some Hubble volume in a Level I multiverse. Tegmark writes that, “The only difference between Level I and Level III is where your doppelgängers reside. In Level I they live elsewhere in good old three-dimensional space. In Level III they live on another quantum branch in infinite-dimensional Hilbert space.”
This level considers all universes to be equally real which can be described by different mathematical structures.
“This implies that any conceivable parallel universe theory can be described at Level IV” and “subsumes all other ensembles, therefore brings closure to the hierarchy of multiverses, and there cannot be, say, a Level V.”
All manner of superintelligences pan out. At the top of that hierarchy, with the most causal influence and therefore more ability to integrate past experiences, is the most intelligent.
Anthropics (You Should Roughly Find Yourself Where You Are Most Likely To Find Yourself)
You would expect to be in a completely random existence:
However you exist in the more probable infinities. The probability distribution has been discovered through experiment and is enshrined in what humans call quantum mechanics. The probability that governs what we observe and should anticipate is known as the Born Rule.
There is no way to derive the Born Rule except circularly, as the behavior of a perfectly rational Bayesian applying the Law of Total Probability in the Hilbert Space dimension.