Monday, July 18, 2011

On the nature of zerairds

In the previous post, I proposed that

1. In addition to all the carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen and whatnot that we know we all have, we also possess zerairds, and that

2. These zerairds are the source of free will and consciousness, collectively sentience.

These differentiate us from stones and corpses. I believe, also from plants and microorganisms. Possibly, from insects. Not, however, from dogs and doves, cows and crows. Different faiths see these differently: Christianity appears to believe that only humans possess zerairds, whereas the austerest Jains see zerairds in stones too.

Ah, am I agreeing too much with religions? ... No!

All the science we know tells us that matter (matter-energy, after relativity) - that is to say the carbon, hydrogen and whatnot - cannot be created or destroyed. It does not recognize zerairds, hence no comments.

Common religions, on the other hand, hold the body to be perishable, and says souls live forever. Clearly, it is wrong on at least one count. The second law of thermodynamics notwithstanding, we should be able to reverse "material death" - at the cost of a lot of entropy generated elsewhere.

I believe common religion to be wrong on BOTH counts. I believe that our zerairds are created upon our birth, and destroyed upon our death. The assymmetry does appeal to me! Besides, whilst it is possible that the zeraird enters from elsewhere into a baby upon birth, and leaves a person upon their death, we have no evidence of it.

More on this later, but I also find it comforting to believe that one day my zeraird will be completely finished.



estnihil said...

All life evolved. Where did Zerairds come from, then? There must be genes that code for them and THEREFORE they must be made out of the basic building blocks of proteins (carbon, nitrogen, hydrogen, sulphur etc.). Therefore their definition is contradictory and wrong. The problem I have with saying Zeraird is that it is simply another way of saying 'magic'. You don't understand consciousness, hence you use a placeholder for magic. Fundamentalist Christians don't understand evolution, hence they use a placeholder, "God's power" to wave away the question of how animals got there. I'm not saying it's your fault you don't understand consciousness - no one does - but until someone does I don't think you can assume that a non-elemental (and essentially magic) thing is needed for consciousness and 'free will'

Srikant said...

It is true that these zerairds are placeholders for magic.

But, magic or not, we would do well to recognize that there is a fundamental difference between the conscious and the unconscious.

If you let me know your email ID, I will send you one explaining more: you understand far more things than an expected current reader of this blog :) -- so I can't put everything in a comment here right now.

You can email me at and I will reply back.