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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Food for thought » » A spin-off topic: Coincidences (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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George Ledo
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After twenty pages of debate on the definition of magic and four on whether magic is real, I'm going to try to lighten things up a bit...

Really weird coincidences: can they be applied to magic as entertainment?

For instance. Many years ago I went to school in Santa Barbara and had a friend (Tom) who attended Canesius High School, a Jesuit school in Rochester NY. I went to a Jesuit high school in San Francisco, so we automatically had something in common.

Anyway, a year or two later I was in artillery survey school at Ft. Sill, OK. Among my circle of friends in class was this guy named Paul. This guy and I saw each other daily for about two months, spent many an evening at the club having a drink, and so forth. The night before we transferred out, a bunch of us were having a drink, and Paul happened to mention he was from Rochester--something that had never come up in all this time.

To cut to the chase: it turned out that Tom (the guy in Santa Barbara) had been Paul's brother's best friend in Rochester since they were kids.

Okay, never mind Carl Jung's theories about coincidences. How can something this weird be applied to entertaining people with what we call "magic?"
That's our departed buddy Burt, aka The Great Burtini, doing his famous Cups and Mice routine
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Jonathan Townsend
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There was a popular notion about "degrees of separation", about the length of a chain of contacts between an arbitrary pair of people. This turned into a game "six degrees of Kevin Bacon" for movies and stars.

We live in a monoculture with an internet ... should offer plenty of opportunities. How to ask in a "clever" way though?
...to all the coins I've dropped here
JackScratch
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Then you have the unified theory. The simplistic version says that a variety of "cause and effect" is universal in all actions, objects, and energies. Everything that has, does, or ever will happen, was cause by the culmination of all previous actions, objects, and energies in a sequence dating back to the begining of time. As such, with the proper ammount of processing capability and data collection, you could extrapolate the entirety of history, present, and future in complete and perfect detail. Given that everything is "cause and effect" then there would be no such thing as "coincidence". All would be duely predestined.
Whit Haydn
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Unified Theory of what?
JackScratch
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Everything. It's unified. "Unified theory" is what "they" call it. I assume because it means that everything, and I mean everything, is connected, either dirrectly, or indirectly.
Vandy Grift
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Jackscratch, I do believe that theory is refered to as the "Theory of Everything" (TOE). But it is, as you said, a theory that tries to combine everything. Combining the theories of the four fundamental interactions of nature. Blah,blah,blah.
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BSutter
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Quote:
On 2006-05-17 16:00, Whit Haydn wrote:
Unified Theory of what?


It is the unified theory of my initials.

Regards,
Bill Sutter
Vandy Grift
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Quote:

It is the unified theory of my initials.



Pretty much so. LOL

Sorry George, hope this dosen't derail the thread.
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Jaz
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One coincidence was when me and a friend, about age 9, were walking by an old, abandoned hospital on a hill above us. For some reason I said that it would be weird if we heard breaking glass. It happened and we ran.

Second one.
As teens, a group of us would walk through a local cemetery for a cheap thrill (no vandalism). One night at about 10pm I turned to the fellow beside me and whispered, "Wouldn't it be scary if we heard organ music." No sooner were the words out that a couple of eerie chords sounded. The whole group heard it and we ran like banshees. While there was a chapel about 100 yards away there was no way anyone could have heard us and it was late at night too.

Other coincidences are that I will be thinking about someone I haven't seen in many years and get a phone call from them or see them in the next few days.

There are quite a few mental effects that suggest coincidences.
JackScratch
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Quote:
On 2006-05-17 16:29, BSutter wrote:
Quote:
On 2006-05-17 16:00, Whit Haydn wrote:
Unified Theory of what?


It is the unified theory of my initials.

Regards,
Bill Sutter


You know, it is a perfectly valid and logical theory. It already exists in a very limited scale. The only limitation is our ability to collect and process data. Each and every one of us predicts the future to one degree or another every single day, using this exact method. All the theory says is that if you could get more detailed info, and could manipulate it more efficiently, you could predict more things more distant into the future.
Whit Haydn
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The Theory of Everything (String Theory) and Einstein's Unified Theory are not the same thing.

Your description of TOE is like a sci-fi description of the Special Theory of Relativity and how it might be used for time-travel. It is very misleading and untrue when stated as you have.

There is such uncertainty at the Quantum level, I can't imagine the cosmos being totally predestined.

If everything is predestined, these words and your words are simply the meaningless product of chemical processes that are ultimately empty of meaning or purpose.

If you truly believe what you are saying, you wouldn't bother to post.

Oh, that's right. You have to post.

It is predestined.
JackScratch
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Quote:
On 2006-05-17 17:12, Whit Haydn wrote: I can't imagine the cosmos being totally predestined.

Logical fallacy. You have to be able to imagine it, for it to be true? Einstein said, and I completely agree, that time travel is completely impossible. I may be getting the name wrong, and as yet there seem to be several different ideas on that, but it is a perfectly sound theory. Why is it that whenever someone brings up predestination, someone else feels like their freewill has just been trod upon. Everything being predestined doesn't invalidate the role any person plays in that destiny. Besides, I just said it was a theory, and while I do think it makes an awful lot of sense, I haven't said I believe it. I will also say that so far, no one has poresented an even half decent arguement against it. So far we have "It's BS" and "I can't imagine it".
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Vandy Grift
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I certainly do NOT want to debate the Theory of Everything on this thread or any other. But, it is not a "perfectly valid and logical theory". Not by ANY stretch of the imagination. I'm not trying to pile on to you JackScratch, but of the MANY TOE's, even String Theory, I don't believe there is one that can stand up at this time. Maybe someday but not now. There is more to The Theory of Everything or String Theory than the premise "that if you could get more detailed info, and could manipulate it more efficiently, you could predict more things more distant into the future." That is not what it's all about. But, we may be talking about two different things. I'm not really aware of the specific "Unified" theory of which you speak.


Allright that's it. George you may report all my posts and have them deleted from this thread. It's another good thread that is being bogged down.

Vandy
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JackScratch
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I don't care what you call it. You can call it "Fred" for all I care. What is illogical about it? Where is the flaw? Don't just tell me I'm wrong because you are certain I am. Show me why I'm wrong. Show me where the flaw in the theory is?
Whit Haydn
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There is nothing to debate, Drew. You don't know anything about string theory or TOE. Why should anyone listen to you?
JackScratch
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What a question. Is it because I'm 12, that's it isn't it? Kids just get no respect. Why should anyone listen to anyone? What makes your thoughts more valid than mine. I don't have a Doctorate from MIT, does that somehow mean my brain is inferior? I'm asking a question here. If no one can answer it, that's fine, but don't tell me I'm wrong and you don't have to explain why. Looks bad.
Whit Haydn
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No, Drew. It is because you are spouting off about philosophy and cosmology and it is obvious all of your knowledge of it comes from what you have gleaned from Discovery magazine.

You have misnamed and mistated the theory. How can anyone debate you? What you are saying is your own position, not that of any theorist that I know of.

I am a big fan of string theory, and believe that we will eventually reconcile all four of the major forces, but that has nothing to do with the pre-destination of people's lives.

Everyone has a right to an opinion. But people will give more weight to one person's opinion than to another. If you had shown any real insight into these things, and not just some consumer pablum re-gurgitated, people might take you seriously.

If you want a brief education on the Cartesian thought experiment in pure reason, go to any philosophy board.

See if you can defend your theory for more than a few minutes with the sophomores.

You insist everyone listen to your ideas and take your opinions seriously. But you do not show any real knowledge of the subjects you bring up, of logic, philosophy, or cosmology. How can people take your statements seriously?

I believe in the supernatural, I am not a doubter in magic or voodoo or of demons and witches. I have my own beliefs and theories about religion. None of those need be discussed on this board. You insist that people take your nihilism seriously.

Tell me why? What has it taught you that you think we will be surprised to learn?

Your "theory" doesn't lead to anything but insanity.

If someone "perceives" me to be a vampire, and kills me to save others, is that just his special "reality" that should be respected?
kregg
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Oracular rhetorical unified theory; now we are all connected to the ridiculous derailment of a topic.

For the least, I was hoping for a good anecdote.
POOF!
JackScratch
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I see Whit, I don't talk a good enough talk, so you can't be bothered to respond to me like a civilised human being with a resonable thought. Leave philosophy to the edjumacated and us little people just shovel coal. Is that how it works?

As for someone killing you because in their reality you are a vampire, well you have to obey the laws of your own reality. In my reality they get locked up for it, and as such would, assuming they were found either guilty or criminaly insane in a court of law. In their reality something entirely different may happen, so they may not care what happens in mine.

And as for discussing the supernatural on this forum. Neither of those were my question and management has yet to see fit to lock them. As such I am taking part in them.
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