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Notes for

"Essential Consciousness":

A book in progress

*** Comments Copyright 2002 by Dennis R. Mannisto. All rights reserved. ***

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Notes for a book length project on which I am working.

Action Without Agents

String theory poses a serious but exciting challange to complexity theorists. The "strings" of the former are not actual strings or objects of any kind. Instead, the term refers to the wave-like graph of a mathematical function or formula. In a UMich string theory professor's words, string theory hinges upon the notion of vibration; however, there is NO object doing the vibrating. In essence, vibrating nothingness or mere "vibratoriness" rests at the base of the universe and of reality.

Complexity theory depends almost entirely upon the existence of, and actions of, "agents" that yield larger complex systems. With string theorists claiming that no fundamental "agent" exists at the beginning of all the increasingly complex systems that follow, the complexitists face a conundrum. (Aside: this probably originated in the two theorists' violation of that basic tenet of complexity that requires interaction; talk to each other!)

To blend the two theories requires that the latter [complexity] theorists consider the possibility that a complex system can -- indeed, must -- emerge from agent-less action, actions without agents.

Skipping my background thinking, I suggest that the challenge requires a supplementary mathematic. Specifically: all math springs from the Identity Function: A=A. While contemporary math has yielded spectacular results, it seems to me inadequate. In its terms, math as it now exists provides a necessary but insufficient descriptive language for the complex string universe.

A=A assserts that a thing, an object, is itself, regardless whether physical or abstract. We all accept this. But we forget that the premise effectively and implicitly restricts all of the universe and its contents to objects. It denies action and activeness anywhere in the universe. The obvious presence of action in the universe shows, therefore, that math's inevitable conclusion -- that objects and only objects compose the universe -- requires redress.

String theory can reach a different conclusion by asserting a different premise, despite its usage of difficult standard object based math. In strict logic, a false conclusion requires that we re-examine the premises. To remedy math's inadequacy, re-examine its premise, A=A.

Both the complexity and string physicists require something akin to a supplementary or parallel mathematic. This para-math would begin with a premise something like "Action Acts" or "activeness acts" [which is dangerously close to the street saying "sh*t happens."] This corresponds to "A=A."This math must develope a complete, coherent, consistent, sound, and valid logic of its own. Yet it must eschew objects of any and all kinds, as well as objectification of the abstract. Yet it cannot, nor should it, supplant the success of standard math. Rather it would give theorists two legs upon which to stand as they attempt to describe the universe. With two legs we can then rigorize the universe's fundamental activeness, and sharpen the mere presumption of activeness that complexitists assume without examination. So where to begin this "para-math"?

As if two fields of physics and the entire realm of mathematics weren't already enough, consider linguistics.

Prof. Dan Moonhawk Alford [] studies Native American languages: Hopi, Navajo, Apache, Arapaho, etc. He presents extensive thinking and discussion on his web pages [see e.g. the "'B'" section of the sub-heading Fouring and Verbing of] regarding what he calls "nominalizing" vs. "non-nominalizing" languages. Of most use, regarding strings, complexity, and math, are his revelations about what he calls the "processy" character of non-nominalizing languages and dialects. That is, he describes languages which exclude nouns [objects] entirely. In particular he asserts that some languages have no objects of any kind at all: no nouns exist, only verbs. His native subjects claim they can carry on hours of conversation without using nouns. The lingustics and its implications open some radically different ways of thinking. If no objects exist, only actions [verbs], then math's "A=A" has no meaning, nor validity.

In a language that consists only of verbs, any notion of a fundamental "quantum" object, or any sort of mathematical "A" is nonsense. In such a language the speaker has a fully developed mindset and concept of the universe that is akin to string theory's basic activeness. Recognizing that Native American language, culture, and population have successed with this worldview and mindset for millenia, we immediately see that some kind of rigorized mathematic of action is possible. (To my knowledge, they have not developed it; it is just possible.) After all, our nominalized (noun-object) Western languages eventually yielded the magnificent math that we have. Navajo, e.g., could do the same, even if we merely begin with direct literal translation/transliteration of their language. For example, we could be strict and say "dogging" rather than "dog," or use the actual meaning of what is usually translated into English as Great White Spirit: "think-breathe-create."

From this rudimentary beginning, a premise that "Activeness Acts," an entire parallel, active math can develop. It can then provide a sharper version of string theory. And it can give complexity theorists a second leg upon which to stand as they admit and then confront their presumption of activeness of agents. Finally, we can hope complexity will yield a complex action composed of lesser actions "executed" by string theorists' vibratory nothingness.

Corollary: for activeness acting, activeness also rests.

2nd Corollary: Activeness and rest preclude "null-ness."

Epilogue - complexity presumes activeness of its agents, but does not examine the "origin of action" assumption. This problem is identical to psychology's behaviorists who presume behavior will occur without examining its source.

String theory postulates a fundamental activeness of nothingness, but then postulates particles to acount for matter; this is a circular argument at best. Better that an "active math" be developed that will facilitate a precise description of the universe's activeness by creating/providing a simple, valid, rigorous logic of action/activeness.

Complexity theory can advance a new worldview when it applies string theory's agent-less activeness using a rigorous mathematic of process verbs rather than of object nouns. Until it does, complexity is only mechanics.

Dennis R. Mannisto (

4. Oct. 2002. **      A general link to the Barnes & Bookstore,

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