Ask A Genius 527 – No Governor for the Self-Consistency of the Universe

In-Sight Publishing

Ask A Genius 527 – No Governor for the Self-Consistency of the Universe

August 8, 2019

[Beginning of recorded material]

Scott Douglas Jacobsen: So, there’s no governor anywhere. There are principles guiding things.

Rick Rosner: The principles are emergent, whatever does not contradict itself can exist, but all these principles are not necessarily pre-existing. They’re embodied in the worlds that incorporate them.

It was a circular statement. I’m not sure if there is a metaphysical ground. I’m not even sure you could say anything pre-exists anything. In that, worlds that can exist in this hypothetical set of worlds that can exist come with their own histories, having a history is part of existing.

Having a worldline is part of being a thing that can exist, so pre-existing is something that needs to be defined or hemmed in.

Jacobsen: If you take any point of time in a worldline, and if you say, “Existing apart from that,” any object with dimensions and none of the dimensions are time.

Rosner: A moment, and you don’t really have a moment; what you have, a manifestation or a perception of a world that can exist. We have an incomplete perception of the entire universe. But our perception of the universe indicates that the universe is self-consistent to a fantastically high degree.

Within that self-consistency is an implied deep, deep history, and deep extent in space, all this stuff is implied. Like, I am sitting here in my TV room. The farthest that I can really see if like 30 feet into another room towards the other end of the house.

So, I can’t see into the universe across 14 billion light years. But everything I have learned and know implies that the universe is at least that old and that wide. All that stuff. It implies vast time and vast space, and a bunch of principles of self-consistency and related principles.

But these principles somehow have an existence independent of the world. It is something that needs to be chased down and pinned down.

[End of recorded material]


Rick Rosner

American Television Writer


Rick Rosner

Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Founder, In-Sight Publishing


In-Sight Publishing


[1] Four format points for the session article:

  1. Bold text following “Scott Douglas Jacobsen:” or “Jacobsen:” is Scott Douglas Jacobsen & non-bold text following “Rick Rosner:” or “Rosner:” is Rick Rosner.
  2. Session article conducted, transcribed, edited, formatted, and published by Scott.
  3. Footnotes & in-text citations in the interview & references after the interview.
  4. This session article has been edited for clarity and readability.

For further information on the formatting guidelines incorporated into this document, please see the following documents:

  1. American Psychological Association. (2010). Citation Guide: APA. Retrieved from
  2. Humble, A. (n.d.). Guide to Transcribing. Retrieved from

License and Copyright

In-Sight Publishing by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at and


© Scott Douglas Jacobsen, Rick Rosner, and In-Sight Publishing 2012-2019. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Scott Douglas Jacobsen, Rick Rosner, and In-Sight Publishing with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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