Arguments agaisnt Materialism
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21-02-2017, 07:13 PM
RE: Arguments agaisnt Materialism
Neurophysiologist and sleep and dreaming researcher Dr. J. Allan Hobson, now retired from Harvard Medical School, proposed what he calls the "dual-aspect monism" of the brain/mind. This can be summarized by one of his own insights: "Subjectivity is the experience of having an objective brain." If you are looking for economy in a theory which embraces all observations, I think that is the best approach.

During his career, Hobson correlated subjective reports with objective brain activity measurements in his dreaming research. With his encouragement, Dr. Ursula Voss at Frankfort University was able to correlate the onset of lucidity during dreaming with the increased activity in the dorso-lateral prefrontal cortex, which is typically largely inactive during dreaming.
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21-02-2017, 08:48 PM (This post was last modified: 21-02-2017 08:58 PM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Arguments agaisnt Materialism
(21-02-2017 04:44 PM)Naielis Wrote:  
(21-02-2017 04:41 PM)Grasshopper Wrote:  Yabut, I don't give a fig about "causal closure" or any of your other jargon. Reality exists, I exist, and "materialism" allows me to continue functioning. It works, much as you dislike that concept. The rest is just theory. I don't need it (and neither do you).

Well of course reality exists. But that's not the issue. The issue is whether we can reasonably assert that all things can be explained as material. I'm leaning towards property dualism these days so I would argue that there must be immaterial properties that can't be explained by material properties or substance.

But you have no evidence for dualism, nor any need to invoke it. There is no way to test for it. Whatever you think you *need* it for, is always going to be an argument from ignorance.

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21-02-2017, 08:58 PM
RE: Arguments agaisnt Materialism
(21-02-2017 10:19 AM)Naielis Wrote:  On the standard meaning, "Benjamin Franklin" is a rigid designator. But the expression, "The inventor of daylight saving time," though it also refers to Benjamin Franklin, is not a rigid designator because it is easy to imagine a world in which Benjamin Franklin was not the inventor of daylight saving time. It makes sense to say that someone else, other than the actual inventor, might have been the inventor of daylight saving time, but it makes no sense to say that someone else, other than Benjamin Franklin, might have been Benjamin Franklin.

Incoherent, based on special pleading, irrelevant to the ultimate argument advanced.

(21-02-2017 10:19 AM)Naielis Wrote:  Thus, if pains really were identical with C-fiber stimulations, then the statement, "Pain = C-fiber stimulation," would have to be necessarily true, if it were to be true at all. But, it is clearly not necessarily true. For even if there is a strict correlation between pains and C-fiber stimulations, all the same, it is easy to imagine that a pain might exist without a C-fiber stimulation existing, and a C-fiber stimulation might exist without a corresponding pain. But, if that is so, then the identity statement is not necessarily true, and if it is not necessarily true, it cannot be true at all. Therefore, it is false. And what goes for the identification of pains with neurobiological events goes for any identification of conscious mental states with physical events."

Even accepting this incoherent drivel about "rigid descriptors", all that Kripke has established is that his definition of "pain" is insufficiently detailed.

This is in no way a coherent objection to materialism.

"Owl," said Rabbit shortly, "you and I have brains. The others have fluff. If there is any thinking to be done in this Forest - and when I say thinking I mean thinking - you and I must do it."
- A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner
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21-02-2017, 09:01 PM
RE: Arguments agaisnt Materialism
(21-02-2017 03:58 PM)Naielis Wrote:  I'm sorry but this is plainly false. Materialism is a metaphysical starting point.

No, it isn't.

(21-02-2017 03:58 PM)Naielis Wrote:  To even arrive at evidence through sense perception, you have to establish certain principles.

...Which does not mean materialism is not a conclusion.

(21-02-2017 03:58 PM)Naielis Wrote:  http://www.iep.utm.edu/consciou/#H3

This does not support your assertion.

"Owl," said Rabbit shortly, "you and I have brains. The others have fluff. If there is any thinking to be done in this Forest - and when I say thinking I mean thinking - you and I must do it."
- A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner
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21-02-2017, 09:38 PM (This post was last modified: 21-02-2017 10:12 PM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Arguments agaisnt Materialism
"Such arguments typically reason from the premise that one can conceive of one’s conscious states existing without one’s body or, conversely, that one can imagine one’s own physical duplicate without consciousness at all ... The metaphysical conclusion ultimately drawn is that consciousness cannot be identical with anything physical, partly because there is no essential conceptual connection between the mental and the physical."

Totally false. Anyone who has ever seen patients with a stroke or brain tumor or brain dead, knows this is complete bullshit. When people's brains are damaged there are ways to watch brain activity, or its absence.

There is NEVER EVER consciousness in the absence of (somewhat healthy) brains.
Consciousness is an illusion. It is physical input of sensory systems, rapidly referenced to memory, and integrated as output. By the time the integration is done, the input is already (very slightly) in the past. What is sensed as the present is already in the past.

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21-02-2017, 09:53 PM
RE: Arguments agaisnt Materialism
(21-02-2017 09:38 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  "Such arguments typically reason from the premise that one can conceive of one’s conscious states existing without one’s body or, conversely, that one can imagine one’s own physical duplicate without consciousness at all ... The metaphysical conclusion ultimately drawn is that consciousness cannot be identical with anything physical, partly because there is no essential conceptual connection between the mental and the physical."

Totally false. Anyone who has ever seen patients with a stroke or brain tumor or brain dead, knows this is complete bullshit. When people's brains are damaged there are ways to watch brain activity, or its absence.

There is NEVER EVER consciousness in the absence of (somewhat healthy) brains.
Consciousness is an illusion. It is physical input of sensory systems, rapidly referenced to memory, and integrated and as output. By the time the integration is done, the input is already (very slightly) in the past. What is sensed as the present is already in the past.

And all this is without getting into the fact that being able to imagine yourself as being disconnected from your body does not in any way make it true, or even possible.

"Owl," said Rabbit shortly, "you and I have brains. The others have fluff. If there is any thinking to be done in this Forest - and when I say thinking I mean thinking - you and I must do it."
- A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner
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22-02-2017, 01:00 AM (This post was last modified: 22-02-2017 01:12 AM by Robvalue.)
RE: Arguments agaisnt Materialism
I think Nails is being totally hamstrung by his need for consciousness to be a distinct entity. Holding a conclusion before you start is always going to warp your methodology.

I'm not sure what kind of theist he is, or whether he's religious or whatever, but it shows once again that to properly study reality you need to put aside any personal assumptions you have and start from scratch. If you can't do that, you'll be stuck forever in a loop, trying to "prove" something that is either false, or true put unprovable. This is why science doesn't deal in proofs. Proofs are for abstract systems only. Evidence is the way we find out, to the best of our ability, what kind of reality we are dealing with. Treating reality as being the same as your abstract system, and never returning to check your results, is giving up on reality. His evidence, so far, has always been "it's self evident". No dice. That just means you're assuming your model is true. You can't tell someone else what is evident to them.

As much as some people might want to, you can't dictate reality.

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22-02-2017, 01:07 AM
RE: Arguments agaisnt Materialism
I have a couple of videos which deal with these subjects:








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22-02-2017, 02:29 AM
RE: Arguments agaisnt Materialism
One last thing...

Ultimately, the only way we can study "causes" is by correlating events. That's it. We can then assume, given an extremely good correlation and an accurate model, that there is a "cause" happening.

We can't view the code of reality, to see how things actually work. All we can do is comment on how they appear to work, and figure out how we can use that to our advantage. It's not necessary to know how, why or even if something literally causes something else. It would be interesting, sure, but it's outside the scope of our investigation. At least for now. Maybe one day we will "break out" of this reality into another one, and be able to study this one objectively.

I have a website here which discusses the issues and terminology surrounding religion and atheism. It's hopefully user friendly to all.
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22-02-2017, 06:54 AM
RE: Arguments agaisnt Materialism
(21-02-2017 08:58 PM)Unbeliever Wrote:  Incoherent, based on special pleading, irrelevant to the ultimate argument advanced.

Not irrelevant, not based on special pleading in any possible universe or reality ever, and completely relevant to the argument advanced.

Quote:Even accepting this incoherent drivel about "rigid descriptors", all that Kripke has established is that his definition of "pain" is insufficiently detailed.

This is in no way a coherent objection to materialism.

Rigid designators are not incoherent drivel; they're an important term used by most of the popular philosophers. Why do you just dismiss things when you clearly haven't researched the history of philosophy. It only makes you seem less prepared. Arguments from modality are completely valid in structure. You have to show how his definition of pain is insufficient and that materialism can deal with this problem.

"I think part of the appeal of mathematical logic is that the formulas look mysterious - you write backward Es!" - Hilary Putnam
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