Are you guys insane?
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22-04-2012, 07:57 AM (This post was last modified: 22-04-2012 08:27 AM by whateverist.)
RE: Are you guys insane?
(22-04-2012 05:42 AM)Egor Wrote:  Chas, you don't know what you're talking about. All you're doing is spouting someone else's speculation.
You must realize how this sounds coming from someone who chooses to spout the 'speculation' of the bible's authors.


The question of consciousness for single cell animals is an interesting one for forcing us to clarify the concept. One thing is certain, these creatures are capable of purposeful movement - either toward something or away from something else. Surely no deliberation is involved, but when the stimuli is received the instinctual response is triggered. The first multi-cell creatures were essentially fused colonies of single celled creatures with little specialization. In jellyfish, there is some cellular specialization but no differentiated organs. Purposeful movement requires coordination between the movement of each of the individual cells but there is no organ which directs this, the effort is collaborative.

So what exactly is consciousness? I'd hesitate to start from the assumption that it has to look the way it does in multicellular creatures. No doubt the emergence of a specialized organ which allows for the inter-connectivity of many neurons is a huge leap forward for consciousness. Yet at least in the early going the function of that organ would have been to simulate what a single cell creature accomplishes within itself, namely the coordinated motion of its parts in instinctual ways.

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22-04-2012, 08:03 AM
RE: Are you guys insane?
(22-04-2012 07:57 AM)whateverist Wrote:  
(22-04-2012 05:42 AM)Egor Wrote:  Chas, you don't know what you're talking about. All you're doing is spouting someone else's speculation.
You must realize how this sounds coming from someone who has internalized the 'speculation' of the bible's authors.

The question of consciousness for single cell animals is an interesting one for forcing us to clarify the concept. One thing is certain, these creatures are capable of purposeful movement - either toward something or away from something else. Surely no deliberation is involved, but when the stimuli is received the instinctual response is triggered. The first multi-cell creatures were essentially fused colonies of single celled creatures with little specialization. In jellyfish, there is some cellular specialization but no differentiated organs. Purposeful movement requires coordination between the movement of each of the individual cells but there is no organ which directs this, the effort is collaborative.

So what exactly is consciousness? I'd hesitate to start from the assumption that it has to look the way it does in multicellular creatures. No doubt the emergence of a specialized organ which allows for the inter-connectivity of many neurons is a huge leap forward for consciousness. Yet at least in the early going the function of that organ would have been to simulate what a single cell creature accomplishes within itself, namely the coordinated motion of its parts in instinctual ways.
To clarify the issue, the movement of uni-cellular creatures toward or away from something has been shown to be entirely chemical. There is no intention, let alone purpose.

The cells that are able to do this are the ones that survive and reproduce; the ones that couldn't, didn't.

This is evolution through natural selection at its most basic.

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22-04-2012, 08:20 AM (This post was last modified: 22-04-2012 08:24 AM by whateverist.)
RE: Are you guys insane?
(22-04-2012 08:03 AM)Chas Wrote:  To clarify the issue, the movement of uni-cellular creatures toward or away from something has been shown to be entirely chemical. There is no intention, let alone purpose.

The cells that are able to do this are the ones that survive and reproduce; the ones that couldn't, didn't.

This is evolution through natural selection at its most basic.
On some level I suppose our movement is also chemically based. Intention is another interesting concept. Does it allow for unconscious as well as conscious purposes? To the degree that purposes are unconscious, what exactly are the triggers?

What about instinctual acts such as the suckling of a baby? Certainly a baby's suckling is purposeful but is it an instance of "intent"? Whatever else it is, it is a coordinated and purposeful action on the part of the baby. It is more complex chemically since it involves the brain.

Philosophically I believe in moderately free will. However there are plenty of people who do not. They would argue that consciousness is epiphenomenal, a subjective illusion which arises within the mind of sufficiently complex creatures but which is ultimately without effect. Without free will, what is intent?

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22-04-2012, 08:31 AM
RE: Are you guys insane?
(22-04-2012 08:20 AM)whateverist Wrote:  
(22-04-2012 08:03 AM)Chas Wrote:  To clarify the issue, the movement of uni-cellular creatures toward or away from something has been shown to be entirely chemical. There is no intention, let alone purpose.

The cells that are able to do this are the ones that survive and reproduce; the ones that couldn't, didn't.

This is evolution through natural selection at its most basic.
On some level I suppose our movement is also chemically based. Intention is another interesting concept. Does it allow for unconscious as well as conscious purposes? To the degree that purposes are unconscious, what exactly are the triggers?

What about instinctual acts such as the suckling of a baby? Certainly a baby's suckling is purposeful but is it an instance of "intent"? Whatever else it is, it is a coordinated and purposeful action on the part of the baby. It is more complex chemically since it involves the brain.

Philosophically I believe in moderately free will. However there are plenty of people who do not. They would argue that consciousness is epiphenomenal, a subjective illusion which arises within the mind of sufficiently complex creatures but which is ultimately without effect. Without free will, what is intent?
Our movement is entirely chemically-based. However, that does not speak to consciousness or intention which, while brain-based, are emergent properties of network complexity. I suggest reading The Mind's I by Hofstadter and Dennett for a very entertaining and thought-provoking journey into the basis of consciousness.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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22-04-2012, 08:56 AM (This post was last modified: 22-04-2012 09:03 AM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Are you guys insane?
(22-04-2012 08:31 AM)Chas Wrote:  
(22-04-2012 08:20 AM)whateverist Wrote:  On some level I suppose our movement is also chemically based. Intention is another interesting concept. Does it allow for unconscious as well as conscious purposes? To the degree that purposes are unconscious, what exactly are the triggers?

What about instinctual acts such as the suckling of a baby? Certainly a baby's suckling is purposeful but is it an instance of "intent"? Whatever else it is, it is a coordinated and purposeful action on the part of the baby. It is more complex chemically since it involves the brain.

Philosophically I believe in moderately free will. However there are plenty of people who do not. They would argue that consciousness is epiphenomenal, a subjective illusion which arises within the mind of sufficiently complex creatures but which is ultimately without effect. Without free will, what is intent?
Our movement is entirely chemically-based. However, that does not speak to consciousness or intention which, while brain-based, are emergent properties of network complexity. I suggest reading The Mind's I by Hofstadter and Dennett for a very entertaining and thought-provoking journey into the basis of consciousness.


I agree with both of you.
Intent is a construct. The "decision" to do anything IS , (only), chemically based, and has been proven to be made,
before we are "aware" of it. (Except for Pete the Paramecium. He's awesome.) It's been pretty much dismissed now,
but have either of you read Penrose's Quantum Consciousness stuff ?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pla...dmNZM#t=3s

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Those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music - Friedrich Nietzsche
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22-04-2012, 09:55 AM (This post was last modified: 22-04-2012 10:17 AM by whateverist.)
RE: Are you guys insane?
(22-04-2012 08:56 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  I agree with both of you.
Intent is a construct. The "decision" to do anything IS , (only), chemically based, and has been proven to be made,
before we are "aware" of it. (Except for Pete the Paramecium. He's awesome.) It's been pretty much dismissed now,
but have either of you read Penrose's Quantum Consciousness stuff ?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pla...dmNZM#t=3s
No I haven't read either Penrose or the Hofstadter/Dennett book. Perhaps this summer. The questions concerning consciousness, the mind and the self are what interest me most .. apart from horticulture.


Oh, but I have seen this video. I'm much less surprised or impressed by what it shows than the narrator.

My take on how we function fits with what is shown. I would never say "I decide what I think" but rather "I discover what I think". There seems to be a popular over-identification with the conscious, rational mind in our culture. In reflecting on such things as we're discussing here, we are not limited to considering the rational coherence of the various points made by experts. We can each assess directly how well one description or another fits our own experience. Feeling plays a huge role in determining what we think. Reason alone is sterile and directionless. Feeling is the direct way in which value is perceived. The rational mind properly serves those perceptions and in doing so aids us in discovering what we think.

So of course we are having a visceral response which can predict where our decision will go before we are able to consciously process that into consciousness. How could it be otherwise? Only someone who thought of themselves as a disembodied brain/mind making decisions by reason alone should be surprised by these results.

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22-04-2012, 07:44 PM
 
RE: Are you guys insane?
Let me save you all the trouble of debate, eventually, atheists have to deny that real consciousness is possible. They cannot believe in free will, and they cannot believe that consciousness--contrary to evidence--arises from outside the central nervous system. An atheist must believe that consciousness is a byproduct of brain activity and that we are motivated by our environment only.

If an atheists allows for any other possibility, their atheism will fall. Atheism is a very fragile belief system. It's not like theism. Take away an argument for the existence of God and it hardly matters. But if even one thing is admitted to the atheist school of thought that runs contrary to it, the whole thing dies.

Precognition is real. I can attest to it, and there are peer-reviewed papers on it.

Protozoa, namely paramecia, behave as if they have consciousness (willful movement absent external triggers as well as the ability to remember)

Near death experiences do occur that cannot be explained (except as a type of psychic experience)

Evolution is grossly absurd unless there is conscious direction involved.

The Big Bang implies a first cause that is external to the physical world and displays organizing intelligence.

An atheist cannot accept any of these things as possible or real. Even if they have to flatly deny what many have directly observed and experienced or what is absurd to deny. Atheism is an extremely fundamentalistic faith-based form of magical thinking.

Thank you.

Your pal,

Ed
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22-04-2012, 09:49 PM (This post was last modified: 23-04-2012 03:43 AM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Are you guys insane?
(22-04-2012 07:44 PM)Egor Wrote:  Let me save you all the trouble of debate, eventually, atheists have to deny that real consciousness is possible. or any other possibility, their atheism will fall.


Say what ? Igor, hun, that sentence construction, is not (proper) English. Have you ever been to school ? It also just happens to be the Fallacy of the False Premise. You do seem to have a problem with writing. My, we're condescending today. It's very humorous that you have picked up a couple "verbal quirks", you didn't used to have, until you started coming here. Very funny indeed.

Au contraire, your deism fails, because you have yet to explain, except by unsupported assertions, evasion, and ad hominems, how it is exactly, your god "exists" (in dimensions she couldn't have created)..ho hum, ho hum.
Something isn't fragile, because you declare it so. Are you like 13 ? "I know you are, but what am I". Your pomposus assertions are so lame.

No one cares about your "precognition". It's "unverifiable". It's just another nutty opinion from the class clown.

What "instuments" were you talking about that you have used to "detect" consciousness in Parameciums, (sic) ? Your percepion, that something "looks" like a certain behavior proves nothing. It's just another crazy opinion/assertion. "Willful movement" is not "consciousness". Ever hear of a "reflex" ? Near death events are perfectly explainable, and there are plausible explanations for the brain chemisry that ensues, (which require no gods). How is it, a psych nurse doesn't know about that ? Hmmm.

Since everything on your list has been more than thoroughly rufuted, a million times elsewhere, I'll just respond to the Big Bang line.

Pete the Paramecium has one word for you. Singularity. There is NO "First Cause" if there is no time, "before" in which the "cause" could have happened. YOU of all people, who says time does not exist should have put that little 2+2 together. Hint : Spacetime began at the Big Bang. Talking about "before" time began is nonsensical.

You're on this broken record of "fail" today. Yet you still haven't explained how "consciousness" is NOT a PROCESS. Processes require time. (Now I'm the broken record).

BTW, "free will" has been refuted by MRI/PET scans proving, the decision is made before we are aware of them. THAT can't be "free will", if we're not aware of what we're "willing"..freely.

So have a fun week with Pete. Have you done an EEG on him yet ?


Come back next week, when you've actually got something for us. Weeping

Ta ta.


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Those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music - Friedrich Nietzsche
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23-04-2012, 12:15 AM
RE: Are you guys insane?
What yer getting outside of the nervous system is tao, you jackass. Mofo wanna worship causality and start counting at infinity; and wonders why the fuck he ain't going nowherez.

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23-04-2012, 01:42 AM
RE: Are you guys insane?
Wouau, Egor, you managed to FAIL in every single fact you have just used for describing an atheist. I thought you were beginning to understand some things, but you are still failing.

Big Grin

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