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Is there really a Determinism/Indeterminism Dichotomy?

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Just posting some stuff on Pedesis, the idea that matter can/does move in ways that are neither deterministic nor random.

The very idea of a purely random motion presupposes that it was not affected by or related to anything else previously, which presupposes that it was the first thing and before it was nothing, which is a version of the internally contradictory hypothesis of ex nihilo creation: something from nothing. The ontology of random motion claims that from pure disorder of discrete nonrelational particles comes high-level composite order. Given the high level of order and complexity in our present age, randomness is demonstrably not the case.

Pedetic motion, on the other hand, is not random at all, but instead emerges from and is influenced by other motions, just not in a completely determined way. Unlike randomness, pedetic motion is not unpredictable because it is not influenced by any other motions; rather, motion is pedetic precisely because it occurs in relation to other motions. It is the interrelation and mutual influence of matter with itself that gives it its unpredictable character. Over a long period of time, the pedetic motion of matter combines and stabilizes into certain patterns, synchronies, and relations, giving the appearance of stability and solidity, only to become turbulent again and enter into new conjoined relations.

Nail, Thomas. Being and Motion (pp. 73-74). Oxford University Press. Kindle Edition.


Heisenberg thus showed that even at the quantum level, matter in motion is both relational and uncertain, or pedetic. Pedesis may be irregular and unpredictable, but it is not random. What is interesting about movement is not simply that it is pedetic, but that it is through pedesis and turbulence that metastable formations and emergent orders are possible. By contrast, the ontology of randomness is quite bleak. In a purely random ontology, all of matter would be moving randomly, and thus nonrelationally, at all times.

-Nail, Thomas. Being and Motion (p. 73). Oxford University Press. Kindle Edition.


The P:
This sounded a lot like Brownian motion.  I looked it up; I guess pedetic is the word kids are using for it these days.  :)


--- Quote from: The P on May 06, 2021, 02:20:16 am ---This sounded a lot like Brownian motion.  I looked it up; I guess pedetic is the word kids are using for it these days.  :)

--- End quote ---

He uses Brownian synonymously but I think he does need a new word since most people assume Brownian motion is inherently random and he wants to make a distinction between randomness and indeterminate-but-relational.

From an interview ->

Time Will Tell: An Interview with Thomas Nail

--- Quote ---So, you don’t interpret the swerve in Lucretius as a random motion? No chance?

I am open to hearing evidence for an outside to the universe, but I have no idea what that would even look like. In part, because the universe is not a whole but an expanding and open process—just as Lucretius described in De Rerum Natura. I believe there is genuine novelty in the universe but we do not need to posit randomness to get that novelty. Lucretius says that matter is always in the habit [solerent] of swerving. There are at least two typical ideas of randomness neither of which Lucretius’ view could support. The first one is a radical randomness, or what Quentin Meillassoux calls “hyperchaos,” which is complete ex nihilo creation from nothing. Lucreitus is explicit that “nil posse creari de nihilo” [nothing can be created from nothing]. The second kind of randomness is the constrained definition randomness where there is a closed domain of objects and matter moves randomly within that. Again, Lucretius is explicit that nature is not a finite closed system—and so there cannot be randomness in this sense either. Something always comes from something relationally but creatively and non-deterministically.
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