The most fundamental, common concept for everything in existence is Self Improvement.

Everything within existence must maintain a minimum stability, must focus on self improvement every moment as the first goal of everything in existence is to continue existence. Existence ends when the minimum stability is lost.

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Comment by Reg The Fronkey Farmer on January 31, 2017 at 4:00pm

I am not sure if “self-improvement” is the aim of most living organisms. Every species must adapt to its environment or become extinct. This is the basic principle of Evolution by natural selection. An adaptation may look like an improvement but there is no intent or plan involved that codes for improvement. The changes (mutations rather than improvements) are random and they may get selected for naturally over time.

Darwin did not coin the phrase “survival of the fittest”. Many people think “fittest” as in the best or the healthiest or the most improved version. What it really means is that those that make the best adaptions (i.e. fit their environment the best) have the best chances of survival.

Existence for everything and everyone ends because of Entropy.

Comment by Andrew Brown on January 31, 2017 at 4:54pm

Reg. I see your reason behind favoring 'adaptation', but that is a generational, fitness concept. Adaptation is part of self improvement. Bacteria absorbing any energy available must improve itself (through adaptation) to absorb new sources of energy, just as we build new technology when we discover a mechanism to transform oil to electricity.

Self Improvement is the maxim by which we exist. You wouldn't be on Think Atheist unless you want to learn more and expand yourself, or in other words, improve yourself.

Comment by Belle Rose on January 31, 2017 at 5:32pm
I think you have to examine where you are on the Maslow's hierarchy of needs. You are able to think about "self improvement" because you have your basic needs met up to about half way through the pyramid at least....self improvement falls under "self actualización." That is a luxury my friend. Don't take it for granted....and don't assume everyone can or ever will get there, and don't assume people who don't get there did something wrong not to have....they just didn't get as far up that pyramid...
Comment by Belle Rose on January 31, 2017 at 5:34pm
And sorry but what the hell does entropy have to do with natural selection? Lol...there is no correlation there what so ever Fronkey lol!!!!
Comment by Andrew Brown on January 31, 2017 at 5:56pm

Self Improvement as used by you, Belle, is from the human perspective.

Change the perspective to a single Hydrogen atom. What is an improvement from this point?

We mostly see Hydrogen as 2H because the Hydrogen must find a balance to have a more persistent existence. As an atom increases complexity, the possible chemical bonds increase. Thus the atom must self improve before carbon can exist.

This notion can be applied to anything within existence and existence itself.

The eternal law of the universe is Improvement. The sum of everything is progressing everyday and everything is trending towards better balance which can be called, 'improvement'.

Comment by Reg The Fronkey Farmer on January 31, 2017 at 7:44pm

@ Belle...Existence ends when the minimum stability is "Entropy". When the source of energy is used up it moves from low to high entropy and its existence ends.

....and everything is trending towards better balance which can be called, 'improvement'.

No, I disagree. They move towards a state of high entropy and comes to an end. It does not matter how much we want to improve ourselves because in the end we all die. I get what you mean if you talking about progressing towards individual maturity or better skillsets but it reaches a point of "maximum improvement" for all species and......then we die.

Increasing complexity is not necessarily "self improvement".

The eternal law of the universe is Improvement. A state of high entropy is the direction our Universe is moving towards. When it gets there "nobody" will  call it "improvement".



Comment by Belle Rose on February 1, 2017 at 2:13am
....I guess I still don't see it. I think you guys are meshing together two different things that really don't go together.
Comment by TJ on February 1, 2017 at 10:16am

If, by "everything in existence" you means, rocks, oceans, sand, as well as organisms, etc...I can't see it as a principle.

If you just mean organisms when you said everything in existence, as a sub-set...

....I would think survival would be job #1, not improvement.

IE: The shark has been unchanged for millions of just "works"...and changes seem to make it one of its adaptations was to resist changing...hence a lower than average mutation rate, etc.

Also, I see some are discussing species vs individuals, as a further, its unclear if you mean this improvement is referring to each individual, or to the species as a whole. It sounded to me more about an individual than a gene pool, but, you did not clarify this.

The focus on the individual vs gene pool of course changes if we mean genetic adaption "improvement", or, taking an anger management class or getting better at pouncing on mice, or whatever.

Either way, the context of your hypothesis is unclear...and, it might help if you elucidated the context.


Comment by Andrew Brown on February 1, 2017 at 11:53am


Everything means Everything; From Quantum Soup through to a Black Hole at the galaxy center through to Earth and all life living within.


  • n. The act or process of surviving.
  • n. The fact of having survived.
  • n. Something, such as an ancient custom or belief, that has survived.

I want to elucidate the context. That is a tough request as the context is literally everything and how everything works. I study everyday trying to understand everything that comes across my sense experience. Alas, there is only so much I can grasp, but while studying, I recognized the basic tool of a Feedback Loop.

This tool can accurately model any individual noun and group of nouns.

Once I found a tool to analyze everything, I noticed the arrows of the loop and went through a thought experiment.

If I assume the Arrow represents Forces (Sum of All Positive and Negative), the Stability of the System is much easier to grasp. Every system requires inputs, produces some output, and must respond to the Forces with appropriate Force to improve Stability/Survival.

Comment by Pope Beanie on February 1, 2017 at 2:33pm
Digital gates, +/- analog feedback loops and the like are useful from modeling perspectives, even including what we experience from day to day, but how can it model uncertainty at the quantum level? Does a qubit or pair of entangled particles also each have it's own "perspective"?

It seems to me we're mostly talking about how to model reality, but no model so far has achieved universal acceptance. Most models help us to understand how things work, even when they're inaccurate, but no model so far can cover every base, or every perspective.


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