Category: causation

The conversation turned to the subject of the human brain. “We…

The conversation turned to the subject of the human brain.

We are all automatons,” he reflected, “obeying external influences. We are entirely under the control of agents that beat on our senses from all directions of the outside world. Being merely receivers from the outside, it is a very important question how good the receivers are – some are sensitive and receive accurately. Others are sluggish and their reception is blurred. The individual who is a better machine has so much greater chance of achieving success and happiness. An individual who is an offender of law is a machine in which one or another organ has been deranged, so that the responses are no longer accurate.

There is no chance in nature, although the modern theory of indeterminacy attempts to show scientifically that events are governed by chance. I positively deny that. The causes and effects, however complex, are intimately linked, and the result of all inferences must be inevitably fixed as by a mathematical formula.

I also absolutely deny the existence of individuality. It took me not less than twenty years to develop a faculty to trace every thought or act of mine to an external influence. We are just waves in time and space, changing continuously, and the illusion of individuality is produced through the concatenation of the rapidly succeeding phases of existence. What we define as likeness is merely the result of the symmetrical arrangement of molecules which compose our body.”

“How about the soul – the spirit?” he was asked.

Ah,” he exclaimed, “but there is no soul or spirit. These are merely expressions of the functions of the body. These life functions cease with death and so do soul and spirit.

What humanity needs is ideals. Idealism is the force that will free us from material fetters.”

–Nikola Tesla.

“Tesla Seeks to Send Power to Planets.” New York Times, July 11, 1931.

Posted in ahead is our time, ahead of his time, anatomy, brain, causation, cause and effect, consciousness, external influences, free will, history, humanity, idealism, individuality, life, mechanistic theory of life, nature, nikola tesla, philosophy, quantum physics, science, soul, spirit, universe

drnikolatesla: Nikola Tesla was asked to select his choice of…


Nikola Tesla was asked to select his choice of the greatest modern and future wonders, but the electrical wizard refused to accept the popular notion of what is wonderful. His reply led to an onslaught on scientists who have abandoned “cause and effect” and who take the position that there are accidents in nature and that anything might happen.

“To the popular mind, any manifestation resulting from any cause will appear wonderful if there is no perceptible connection between cause and effect. For instance, through the means of wireless telephone speech is carried to opposite points of the globe. To the vast majority this must appear miraculous. To the expert who is familiar with the apparatus and sees it in his mind’s eye the result is obvious. It is exactly as though visible means existed to which the impetus is transmitted.

“As I revolve in my mind the thoughts in answer to your question I find the most wonderful thing is the utter aberration of the scientific mind during the last twenty five years. In that time the relativity theory [Albert Einstein], the electron theory [J. J. Thomson], the quantum theory [Max Planck, Niels Bohr, Werner Heisenberg, Erwin Schrödinger, Arthur Compton, Paul Dirac, Wolfgang Pauli], the theory of radioactivity [Marie Curie] and others have been worked out and developed to an amazing degree. And yet probably not less than 90 per cent of what is thought today to be demonstrable scientific truth is nothing but unrealizable dreams.

“What is ‘thought’ in relativity, for example, is not science, but some kind of metaphysics based on abstract mathematical principles and conceptions which will be forever incomprehensible to beings like ourselves whose whole knowledge is derived from a three-dimensional world.

“The idea of the atom being formed of electrons and protons which go whirling round each other like a miniature sun and planets is an invention of the imagination, and has no relation to the real nature of matter.

“Virtually all progress has been achieved by physicists, discoverers and inventors; in short, devotees of the science which Newton and his disciples have been and are propounding.

“Personally, it is only efforts in this direction which have claimed my energies. Similar remarks might be made with respect to other modern developments of thought. Take, for example, the electron theory. Perhaps no other has given rise to so many erroneous ideas and chimerical hopes. Everybody speaks of electrons as something entirely definite and real. Still, the fact is that nobody has isolated it and nobody has measured its charge. Nor does anybody know what it really is.

“In order to explain the observed phenomena, atomic structures have been imagined [Quantum Mechanics], none of which can possibly exist. But the worst illusion to which modern thought has led is the idea of ‘indeterminacy’ [ex. Uncertainty Principle: W. Heisenberg, E. Schrödinger]. To make this clear, I may remark that heretofore we have in positive science assumed that every effect is the result of a preceding cause.

“As far as I am concerned, I can say that after years of concentrated thought and investigation there is no truth in nature of which I would be more fully convinced. But the new theories of ‘indeterminacy’ state this is not true, that an effect cannot be predicted in advance.

“If two planets collide at certain time and certain place, this is to the student of positive science an inevitable result of preceding interactions between the bodies; and if our knowledge would be adequate, we would be able to foretell the event accurately.

“But in the spirit of the new theories this would simply be an accident. ‘Indeterminacy’ introduces into the world of inert matter a principle which might virtually be compared with the universal illusion of free will.

“Of course, there is no such thing. In years of experimenting I have found that every thought I conceive, every act I perform, is the result of external impressions on my senses.

“It is only because the vast majority of human being are not observant sufficiently that they live in the illusion of perfect choice and freedom in their thoughts and actions. And if this holds true even in the most complex and involved manifestations of human life, it holds true with the same force in all the world of matter.”

–Nikola Tesla

“Great Scientific Discovery Impends.“ The Sunday Star, Washington D.C., May 17, 1931.

Posted in ahead of his time, ahead of our time, causation, cause and effect, engineering, goat, history, mathematics, metaphysics, nikola tesla, philosophy, physicists, physics, quantum mechanics, quantum physics, quotes, roast, science, scientists

“Speaking of technical achievements, however extraordinary, they may be only wonderful to those who…

“Speaking of technical achievements, however extraordinary, they may be only wonderful to those who have no knowledge of the mechanism or agents linking the effect to the cause. To be truly wonderful there must be about the manifestations observed an element of mystery which the human race has not yet fathomed. That inanimate matter should run into organic forms must be considered a wonder, because we have not yet ascertained why and how this is brought about.”

“The human being is one of the greatest mysteries of nature and consequently a wonder. And so is life in all its manifestations. But a time may come when all the subtle and involved processes that are part of our living existence will be laid bare and understood, and then the element of wonder will be removed.”

–Nikola Tesla

“Great Scientific Discovery Impends.“ Sunday Star, Washington D.C., May 17, 1931.

Posted in ahead of his time, causation, cause and effect, discovery, history, invention, knowledge, nature, nikola tesla, philosophy, physics, science, universe

“How Cosmic Forces Shape Our Destines.” “Accepting all this as…

“How Cosmic Forces Shape Our Destines.”

“Accepting all this as true let us consider some of the forces and influences which act on such a wonderfully complex automatic engine with organs inconceivably sensitive and delicate, as it is carried by the spinning terrestrial globe in lightning flight through space. For the sake of simplicity we may assume that the earth’s axis is perpendicular to the ecliptic and that the human automaton is at the equator. Let his weight be one hundred and sixty pounds then, at the rotational velocity of about 1,520 feet per second with which he is whirled around, the mechanical energy stored in his body will be nearly 5,780,000 foot pounds, which is about the energy of a hundred-pound cannon ball.

“This momentum is constant as well as upward centrifugal push, amounting to about fifty-five hundredth of a pound, and both will probably be without marked influence on his life functions. The sun, having a mass 332,000 times that of the earth, but being 23,000 times farther, will attract the automaton with a force of about one-tenth of one pound, alternately increasing and diminishing his normal weight by that amount.

“Though not conscious of these periodic changes, he is surely affected by them.

“The earth in its rotation around the sun carries him with the prodigious speed of nineteen miles per second and the mechanical energy imparted to him is over 25,160,000,000 foot pounds. The largest gun ever made in Germany hurls a projectile weighing one ton with a muzzle velocity of 3,700 feet per second, the energy being 429,000,000 foot pounds. Hence the momentum of the automaton’s body is nearly sixty times greater. It would be sufficient to develop 762,400 horse-power for one minute, and if the motion were suddenly arrested the body would be instantly exploded with a force sufficient to carry a projectile weighing over sixty tons to a distance of twenty-eight miles.

“This enormous energy is, however, not constant, but varies with the position of the automaton in relation to the sun. The circumference of the earth has a speed of 1,520 feet per second, which is either added to or subtracted from the translatory velocity of nineteen miles through space. Owing to this the energy will vary from twelve to twelve hours by an amount approximately equal to 1,533,000,000 foot pounds, which means that energy streams in some unknown way into and out of the body of the automaton at the rate of about sixty-four horse-power.

“But this is not all. The whole`solar system is urged towards the remote constellation Hercules at a speed which some estimate at some twenty miles per second and owing to this there should be similar annual changes in the flux of energy, which may reach the appalling figure of over one hundred billion foot pounds. All these varying and purely mechanical effects are rendered more complex through the inclination of the orbital planes and many other permanent or casual mass actions.

“This automaton, is, however subjected to other forces and influences. His body is at the electric potential of two billion volts, which fluctuates violently and incessantly. The whole earth is alive with electrical vibrations in which he takes part. The atmosphere crushes him with a pressure of from sixteen to twenty tons, according, to barometric condition. He receives the energy of the sun’s rays in varying intervals at a mean rate of about forty foot pounds per second, and is subjected to periodic bombardment of the sun’s particles, which pass through his body as if it were tissue paper. The air is rent with sounds which beat on his eardrums, and he is shaken by the unceasing tremors of the earth’s crust. He is exposed to great temperature changes, to rain and wind.

“What wonder then that in such a terrible turmoil, in which cast iron existence would seem impossible, this delicate human engine should act in an exceptional manner? If all automata were in every respect alike they would react in exactly the same way, but this is not the case. There is concordance in response to those disturbances only which are most frequently repeated, not to all. It is quite easy to provide two electrical systems which, when subjected to the same influence, will behave in just the opposite way.

“So also two human beings, and what is true of individuals also holds good for their large aggregations. We all sleep periodically. This is not an indispensable physiological necessity any more than stoppage at intervals is a requirement for an engine. It is merely a condition gradually imposed upon us by the diurnal revolution of the globe, and this is one of the many evidences of the truth of the mechanistic theory. We note a rhythm or ebb and tide, in ideas and opinions, in financial and political movements, in every department of our intellectual activity.

“It only shows that in all this a physical system of mass inertia is involved which affords a further striking proof. If we accept the theory as a fundamental truth and, furthermore, extend the limits of our sense perceptions beyond those within which we become conscious of the external impressions, then all the states in human life, however unusual, can be plausibly explained.”

–Nikola Tesla

New York American, February 7, 1915.

Posted in ahead of his time, ahead of our time, automatons, causation, cause and effect, determinism, external influences, free will, history, human being, mechanistic theory of life, nikola tesla, philosophy, physics, science

The Mechanistic Theory of Life

The Mechanistic Theory of Life

Posted in automata, causation, determinism, external influences, free will, history, human beings, mechanistic theory of life, nikola tesla, philosophy, quotes, science

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Posted in causation, coincidence, correlation, math, mathematics, statistics, weird correlations