Lets try it this way. Make up a solution of something that will crystallize out.Byblos wrote:I would agree to a certain extent since there seems to be no rhyme or reason as to why a particular molecule ends up on one side of the terrain as opposed to another. But even though that seems to be the case (randomness) I would bet even at the molecular/atomic (even sub-atomic and quantum) levels actions can be explained by the laws of physics, wouldn't you agree? I don't know enough about the laws of physics and how they govern at the lowest levels but I bet it's a bottom up approach that is consistent, i.e. cause and effect. Otherwise we would not see the order we observe and randomness (a la horse suddenly appearing) would be much more common.Audie wrote:I suppose any waterfall starts in the ocean. The water that evaporates eventually forms as raindrops. While each molecule reacts to its circumstances in accordance with forces outside itself, there seems to be no pattern in which molecules are in which raindrops, nor to the pattern of which falls where on any given acre of ground.Byblos wrote:There's nothing 'random' about water forming waterfalls but we must be careful not to swing completely to the other deterministic side.Audie wrote:Oh, where Story says "nothing is that random"
Water forms into waterfalls because that's what water tends to do under those conditions (gravity, lots of water that seeks its level, overflows seek more channels, etc etc).
The key words are of course underlined. What does it mean to 'tend to' do something? Well, it is inherent in the property of the thing, what makes it what it is. Assuming no other factors, water will sit in a cup for ever and ever. If the cup is broken, water will seek its level. It is the potential of water to do so, until that potential is turned into an actuality.
So long as things have the potential to be one thing or another and that potential is actualized, the thing is now said to be in act.
A quick note about randomness, what I would consider a random act is something totally inexplicable. A horse suddenly appearing out of nowhere in the middle of the room is a random, inexplicable act.
I think we'd all be satisfied that the pattern of raindrops falling on that acre is random.
Likewise, that there is no order to the soil particles picked up and moved by the rain.
This one could have been two inches from that one rather than touching, and it would all work out the same way.
What goes into a waterfall is random on some levels, and all the time determined
in others by physical laws. Is not so?
I suppose it is, I can't think of anything else that fits the description.Audie wrote:Your definition of random seems to be either "miracle" or, "impossible"
T he individual atoms / molecules are moving about randomly, but they will form into orderly crystals.
If it is not random enough, stir it up. Do it some more; the crystals will still form if you stir it constantly.
The point here is that no particular order is needed at that level for orderly results to emerge.