Magic

Grognor (+180/-121)
Zack_M_Davis (-84) byline removal
Vladimir_Nesov (+355/-89) nope, that lost the reason for the distinction between magic and non-magic
Zack_M_Davis quote italics
Zack_M_Davis (+19)
Zack_M_Davis still needs work, but removing cleanup tag
Zack_M_Davis fixing quotation display
Zack_M_Davis (+492/-420) rewrite
Vladimir_Nesov (+18) It needs a rewrite in view of there being the [[Magical categories]] page
PeerInfinity

Traditional depictions of magic would seem to require introducing complex ontologically fundamental entities: some magician or sorceress says the right words and performs some ritual, and some part of the universe obeys their will. But how does it know when to obey someone's will? The stated conditions for the effect are far too complex to be implemented by a simple arrangement of mechanistic laws, the complexity of magic must be at least that of minds. What seems to humans like a simple explanation, sometimes isn't at all.

In our own naturalistic, reductionist universe, it doesn't work this way: minds are made out of simple, mathematically-describable parts.there is always a simpler explanation. Any complicated thing that happens, happens because there is some physical mechanism behind it, even if you don't know the mechanism yourself (which is most of the time). There is no magic.

Traditional depictions of magic would seem to require ontologically fundamental entities: some magician or sorceress says the right words and performs some ritual, and some part of the universe obeys their will. In our own naturalistic, reductionist universe, it doesn't work this way: minds are made out of simple, mathematically-describable parts. Any complicated thing that happens, happens because there is some physical mechanism behind it, even if you don't know the mechanism yourself (which is most of the time). There is no magic.

Expecting magical effects inTraditional depictions of magic would seem to require ontologically fundamental entities: some magician or sorceress says the natural world is much more difficult than it might seem. Magic usually involves effects that require intelligence to carry through,right words and so the complexity of magic must be at least that of minds. A category that can only be recognized by a mindperforms some ritual, and not simpler mechanism is called "magical category". It won't be useful in explanationssome part of the natural mindless processes. One interesting varietyuniverse obeys their will. In our own naturalistic, reductionist universe, it doesn't work this way: minds are made out of simple, mathematically-describable parts. Any complicated thing that happens, happens because there is sympathetic magicsome physical mechanism behind it, even if you don't know the mechanism yourself (which is most of the time).

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