### Re: Theravada against mathematics

Posted:

**Sun Aug 04, 2019 11:29 am**A Buddhist discussion forum on the Dhamma of Theravāda Buddhism

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Posted: **Sun Aug 04, 2019 11:29 am**

Posted: **Mon Aug 12, 2019 5:49 pm**

For convenience, a “satta” is a conglomerate of impersonal elements (of dhammas). One combination of elements replaces another according to certain rules. Each dhamma exists at one moment in time (one kshana). The life span of a satta of any type is limited: life cannot be arbitrarily long.

Life is a sequence of combinations of a finite number of elements replacing each other according to a limited number of rules. The total number of these combinations is limited by the lifetime. A chess game is also a sequence of combinations of a limited number of elements replacing each other according to a finite number of rules.

If the number of combinations of chess pieces on the board in one game is limited to 40 moves, then the total number of all possible chess games is known. This is the number of Shannon. Similarly, the number of all possible life options will turn out to be a very large number, but the number is also finite.

Since conditioned dhammas do not arise without kammic causes and without maturing conditions (that is, without previous dhammas), the number of past lives is unlimited - unlike the number of all possible lives.

Since the satta (that is, the subject to some extent freely making decisions) is actually a trick, in the past there was no one to impede the development of all possible events.

Posted: **Mon Aug 12, 2019 7:04 pm**

Posted: **Mon Aug 12, 2019 7:06 pm**

Your argument doesn't hold, Germann.

Satta may be an illusion, but the causal links are real, hence not all possible events are realised.

Satta may be an illusion, but the causal links are real, hence not all possible events are realised.

Posted: **Tue Aug 13, 2019 3:49 am**

You are doing all the things which people do when they want to construct a mathematical model of something.Germann wrote: ↑Mon Aug 12, 2019 5:49 pmTheravada school is contrary to mathematics. The number of all possible lives is similar to the Shannon number, it is also finite - and the Buddhist past is infinite. Any possible life should have already been realized, and Nibbana in each case should have already been achieved.

For convenience, a “satta” is a conglomerate of impersonal elements (of dhammas). One combination of elements replaces another according to certain rules. Each dhamma exists at one moment in time (one kshana). The life span of a satta of any type is limited: life cannot be arbitrarily long.

Life is a sequence of combinations of a finite number of elements replacing each other according to a limited number of rules. The total number of these combinations is limited by the lifetime. A chess game is also a sequence of combinations of a limited number of elements replacing each other according to a finite number of rules.

If the number of combinations of chess pieces on the board in one game is limited to 40 moves, then the total number of all possible chess games is known. This is the number of Shannon. Similarly, the number of all possible life options will turn out to be a very large number, but the number is also finite.

Since conditioned dhammas do not arise without kammic causes and without maturing conditions (that is, without previous dhammas), the number of past lives is unlimited - unlike the number of all possible lives.

Since the satta (that is, the subject to some extent freely making decisions) is actually a trick, in the past there was no one to impede the development of all possible events.

What people do who construct mathematical models of something (people like newton or einstein) is after constructing their model they observe what actually happens in the actual thing that they have modeled and they see if their model actually is consistent with what actually happens.

This step is not possible for your mathematical model of theravada doctrine as far as I can tell. You may construct whatever model you want but unless/until you can find significant data which shows the model is realistically predictive then it has not succeeded.

Since you seem to be presenting your model as well formed perhaps now you should go on to figuring out how you will test your model against reality.

Also, from a scientific standpoint, your theory that theravada doctrine can be modeled should be constructed so that it is in some way falsefiable as falsefiability is necessary in evaluating theoretical assertions if their predictions are to be considered valid.

chownah

Posted: **Tue Aug 13, 2019 3:54 am**

The finite set of possible lives is smaller than the infinite set of past lives. If life is possible and happens naturally or by accident, life has already happened. ("Life" is a sequence of combinations of elements limited in maximum length.)

Posted: **Tue Aug 13, 2019 4:03 am**

Then Theravada should preach a rejection of mathematics. If Theravada is right, then mathematics is not right. Theravada should create an alternative, Theravada mathematics - which would prove equally successful in scientific and technical activities. Otherwise, Theravada does not corresponds to the criterion of the coherence theory of truth. Science corresponds to the coherence theory of truth.chownah wrote: ↑Tue Aug 13, 2019 3:49 amYou are doing all the things which people do when they want to construct a mathematical model of something.Germann wrote: ↑Mon Aug 12, 2019 5:49 pmTheravada school is contrary to mathematics. The number of all possible lives is similar to the Shannon number, it is also finite - and the Buddhist past is infinite. Any possible life should have already been realized, and Nibbana in each case should have already been achieved.

For convenience, a “satta” is a conglomerate of impersonal elements (of dhammas). One combination of elements replaces another according to certain rules. Each dhamma exists at one moment in time (one kshana). The life span of a satta of any type is limited: life cannot be arbitrarily long.

Life is a sequence of combinations of a finite number of elements replacing each other according to a limited number of rules. The total number of these combinations is limited by the lifetime. A chess game is also a sequence of combinations of a limited number of elements replacing each other according to a finite number of rules.

If the number of combinations of chess pieces on the board in one game is limited to 40 moves, then the total number of all possible chess games is known. This is the number of Shannon. Similarly, the number of all possible life options will turn out to be a very large number, but the number is also finite.

Since conditioned dhammas do not arise without kammic causes and without maturing conditions (that is, without previous dhammas), the number of past lives is unlimited - unlike the number of all possible lives.

Since the satta (that is, the subject to some extent freely making decisions) is actually a trick, in the past there was no one to impede the development of all possible events.

What people do who construct mathematical models of something (people like newton or einstein) is after constructing their model they observe what actually happens in the actual thing that they have modeled and they see if their model actually is consistent with what actually happens.

This step is not possible for your mathematical model of theravada doctrine as far as I can tell. You may construct whatever model you want but unless/until you can find significant data which shows the model is realistically predictive then it has not succeeded.

Since you seem to be presenting your model as well formed perhaps now you should go on to figuring out how you will test your model against reality.

Also, from a scientific standpoint, your theory that theravada doctrine can be modeled should be constructed so that it is in some way falsefiable as falsefiability is necessary in evaluating theoretical assertions if their predictions are to be considered valid.

chownah

(Logic is also part of mathematics. If logic - according to your position - optional, you can draw any "conclusions", as a result of which the absurdity and valid judgment become equivalent.)

Posted: **Tue Aug 13, 2019 5:26 am**

There is so far nothing to reject....you have formulated a theory; a theory that you have created a mathematical model for certain theravada doctrines..... but as yet you have not tested it....in fact, as yet you have not even suggested a way to test your theory.Germann wrote: ↑Tue Aug 13, 2019 4:03 amThen Theravada should preach a rejection of mathematics. If Theravada is right, then mathematics is not right. Theravada should create an alternative, Theravada mathematics - which would prove equally successful in scientific and technical activities. Otherwise, Theravada does not corresponds to the criterion of the coherence theory of truth. Science corresponds to the coherence theory of truth.Chownah wrote: You are doing all the things which people do when they want to construct a mathematical model of something.

What people do who construct mathematical models of something (people like newton or einstein) is after constructing their model they observe what actually happens in the actual thing that they have modeled and they see if their model actually is consistent with what actually happens.

This step is not possible for your mathematical model of theravada doctrine as far as I can tell. You may construct whatever model you want but unless/until you can find significant data which shows the model is realistically predictive then it has not succeeded.

Since you seem to be presenting your model as well formed perhaps now you should go on to figuring out how you will test your model against reality.

Also, from a scientific standpoint, your theory that theravada doctrine can be modeled should be constructed so that it is in some way falsefiable as falsefiability is necessary in evaluating theoretical assertions if their predictions are to be considered valid.

chownah

(Logic is also part of mathematics. If logic - according to your position - optional, you can draw any "conclusions", as a result of which the absurdity and valid judgment become equivalent.)

I think it is ridiculous that theravada should preach anything because of your untested, unsupported mathematical model theory.....

chownah

Posted: **Tue Aug 13, 2019 5:40 am**

If Theravada Buddhism can be expressed in maths pl. explain under which principles Anitta dukka anatma along with vinaya can be expressed. Thripitaka is beyond concepts.

Posted: **Tue Aug 13, 2019 2:59 pm**

Mathematics is just practically tested: science with technology is based on it. Denying this mathematics, Theravada will have to propose an alternative mathematics - which should no less successfully cope with such a task.chownah wrote: ↑Tue Aug 13, 2019 5:26 amThere is so far nothing to reject....you have formulated a theory; a theory that you have created a mathematical model for certain theravada doctrines..... but as yet you have not tested it....in fact, as yet you have not even suggested a way to test your theory.Germann wrote: ↑Tue Aug 13, 2019 4:03 amThen Theravada should preach a rejection of mathematics. If Theravada is right, then mathematics is not right. Theravada should create an alternative, Theravada mathematics - which would prove equally successful in scientific and technical activities. Otherwise, Theravada does not corresponds to the criterion of the coherence theory of truth. Science corresponds to the coherence theory of truth.Chownah wrote: You are doing all the things which people do when they want to construct a mathematical model of something.

What people do who construct mathematical models of something (people like newton or einstein) is after constructing their model they observe what actually happens in the actual thing that they have modeled and they see if their model actually is consistent with what actually happens.

This step is not possible for your mathematical model of theravada doctrine as far as I can tell. You may construct whatever model you want but unless/until you can find significant data which shows the model is realistically predictive then it has not succeeded.

Since you seem to be presenting your model as well formed perhaps now you should go on to figuring out how you will test your model against reality.

Also, from a scientific standpoint, your theory that theravada doctrine can be modeled should be constructed so that it is in some way falsefiable as falsefiability is necessary in evaluating theoretical assertions if their predictions are to be considered valid.

chownah

(Logic is also part of mathematics. If logic - according to your position - optional, you can draw any "conclusions", as a result of which the absurdity and valid judgment become equivalent.)

I think it is ridiculous that theravada should preach anything because of your untested, unsupported mathematical model theory.....

chownah

Posted: **Tue Aug 13, 2019 3:02 pm**

Posted: **Tue Aug 13, 2019 3:34 pm**

Theravada is not denying mathematics.....it just that you seem to think that mathematics has some validity as a descriptor of phenomena based only on itself and that phenomena must be seen in a way which is consistent with a mathematical description....and I don't think that anyone here or in the mathematics community of accomplished mathematicians holds that view.....I think that mathematicians and scientists say that this is getting it the wrong way around....mathematics is only a model and can only be used as a descriptor of phenomena if it is shown to be predictive by predicting results of experiments....and even then scientists will keep looking for more subtle expressions of the phenomena to try to find the limits of the mathematical models prediction abilities....and ultimately most mathematical models when shown to yield adequate predictions in some situations are shown to not be adequate predictors in other situations and the hunt for a better model begins in earnest......YOU on the other hand skip all of this and make the mistake of thinking that mathematic models define how the phenomena must behave....you avoid talking about any attempt to determine if your model fits the phienomena or not and assert that the phenomena MUST behave as your model predicts.....absolutely the wrong way around....Germann wrote: ↑Tue Aug 13, 2019 2:59 pmMathematics is just practically tested: science with technology is based on it. Denying this mathematics, Theravada will have to propose an alternative mathematics - which should no less successfully cope with such a task.chownah wrote: ↑Tue Aug 13, 2019 5:26 amThere is so far nothing to reject....you have formulated a theory; a theory that you have created a mathematical model for certain theravada doctrines..... but as yet you have not tested it....in fact, as yet you have not even suggested a way to test your theory.Germann wrote: ↑Tue Aug 13, 2019 4:03 am

Then Theravada should preach a rejection of mathematics. If Theravada is right, then mathematics is not right. Theravada should create an alternative, Theravada mathematics - which would prove equally successful in scientific and technical activities. Otherwise, Theravada does not corresponds to the criterion of the coherence theory of truth. Science corresponds to the coherence theory of truth.

(Logic is also part of mathematics. If logic - according to your position - optional, you can draw any "conclusions", as a result of which the absurdity and valid judgment become equivalent.)

I think it is ridiculous that theravada should preach anything because of your untested, unsupported mathematical model theory.....

chownah

chownah

Posted: **Sat Aug 17, 2019 6:17 am**

If the Theravada school is right, Claude Shannon is wrong: the total number of all possible chess games in 40 moves - is not limited. None of the mathematicians will agree with this.

If the scientific model is mathematically incorrect, and no new mathematical solutions are proposed that remove these contradictions, such a model is rejected by science without experimental verification. Only a mathematically correct model can describe some kind of reality - regardless of whether it exists or not. The mathematically incorrect model does not describe anything but fantasies. Mathematics is an abstract language for describing all conceivable variants of the universe.chownah wrote: ↑Tue Aug 13, 2019 3:34 pm

it just that you seem to think that mathematics has some validity as a descriptor of phenomena based only on itself and that phenomena must be seen in a way which is consistent with a mathematical description....and I don't think that anyone here or in the mathematics community of accomplished mathematicians holds that view.....I think that mathematicians and scientists say that this is getting it the wrong way around....mathematics is only a model and can only be used as a descriptor of phenomena if it is shown to be predictive by predicting results of experiments....and even then scientists will keep looking for more subtle expressions of the phenomena to try to find the limits of the mathematical models prediction abilities....and ultimately most mathematical models when shown to yield adequate predictions in some situations are shown to not be adequate predictors in other situations and the hunt for a better model begins in earnest......YOU on the other hand skip all of this and make the mistake of thinking that mathematic models define how the phenomena must behave....you avoid talking about any attempt to determine if your model fits the phienomena or not and assert that the phenomena MUST behave as your model predicts.....absolutely the wrong way around....

chownah

Mathematically, Nibbana should already be achieved. Theravada - arguing the opposite - is directly contrary to mathematics.

Posted: **Sat Aug 17, 2019 2:28 pm**

How can one describe meditation , anapana and vipassana with mathematics if Theravada is in line or complies with mathematics. I believe that mathematics can only be applied conventionally and not with absolutes ( Parramatta).

Posted: **Sat Aug 17, 2019 10:07 pm**

justindesilva wrote: ↑Sat Aug 17, 2019 2:28 pmHow can one describe meditation , anapana and vipassana with mathematics if Theravada is in line or complies with mathematics. I believe that mathematics can only be applied conventionally and not with absolutes ( Parramatta).