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Posts: 6924/7006
(15-Jan-2012 at 07:11)


Quote:
You can go read up at http://www.sciencebuddies.org/scienc...c_method.shtml I found a simple site for you.
So, as I thought, you can't tell us what The Scientific Method is, and faced with that try to be a smart ass with a link to a kiddy site that is simplistic to the point of being meaningless. I guess the grown up sites don't say what you want them to say...

Let me teach you about philosophy, at your own level. First, a philosopher asks a question (What is the meaning of good?). Then he does some research, and draws a hypothesis (What have other people said? What are the holes in their logic?). Then he tests it by thought experiments/debate (Would it still hold true in X circumstances?) to see if it stands up. Then he analyses the outcome, and if all is well communicates the results. Looks similar to your Scientific Method? That is because it is.

In the real world your so-called 'Scientific Method' is pretty damn universal, because it can be applied universally, because it is just the application of logical reasoning to solve a problem. Understand?


Quote:
You have no idea of what I know
I can draw conclusions from what you say. What you say doesn't hold together as a logically coherent argument. Conclusion? You don't understand logical reasoning, which suggests that you are not familiar with science or philosophy, as both demand that arguments *do* hold together logically.

Philosophy is not the polar opposite of science that people like you imagine it is.


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To that I must say talking further with you is unproductive.
You would be amazed how many people say that when they run out of arguments.

The issue here is simple: before you can discuss the soul, you have to show that a soul exists. You have not done that. That is *your* failing. Taking the 'Aaaah but...' route of saying it is beyond science doesn't work, because you have failed to show that your statement is true. In what way is it 'beyond science' - because it can't be detected in any way? Logical conclusion: high probability that it doesn't exist...

Nor have you taken a philosophical route of presenting any coherent reasoning why a soul should exist. What phenomenon can be explained only by the existence of a soul?

Instead of spitting your dummy out and blaming me for your failed arguments, come up with something more convincing and less faith-based. If you cant do that, be a grown up and consider the possibility that there is no soul.

"Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel." But let it be considered that he did not mean a real and generous love of our country, but that pretended patriotism which so many, in all ages and countries, have made a cloak of self- interest.
#21  
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Posts: 1535/1637
(16-Jan-2012 at 03:43)
Well done, Trent.

I want to add that while logic is perfect, the input into the logical system is not.

Garbage in, garbage out.

[...]

VoR, I'm still mulling over a responce for you. Your reply was to good standard, which is what I wanted.
#22  
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Posts: 1536/1637
(16-Jan-2012 at 04:15)
Re: How the Afterlife Makes Perfect Sense

Originally Posted by Saint Sinner: View Post
How is it that you have absolutely no concept of what "scientific method" or even a general understanding about what science is?
I tend to concern myself more with the implications. It's about the 'worth' of the thing in terms of how it impacts the integrity of one's own wellbeing.

Fairly basic ethical stuff.

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Facts are not true. They simply are.
I am questioning the nature of how facts 'simply are'. I don't accept the framework as being able to handle reality, but more like a human interpretation of reality.

Are you suggesting that a human interpretation of reality is all there is? You do realize that that requires a belief in a paradigm.

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Truth is the function of the beliefs that start and terminate among them.
That's not my understanding.

To me, truth is highest possible level of understanding.

'Facts', as you describe, do not attempt to develop themselves. The statement, 'they just are', proves the staleness of them.

Is or isn't the universe stale? Non-vigorous? Non-dynamic?

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"We choose to follow the scientific method because of our thirst for knowledge and of fact in an effort to combat ignorance.
If we wished to know truth and the nature of knowledge we would go to church."
I see what you did there.

But I don't think church has anything to do with the existance of the soul, at least, not fundamentally.

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Arrogance doesnt say "it's only a matter of time", it says "there is nothing left to learn"
The quest for knowledge and understanding is unending. When one goal is achieved another goal will take its place. It is the way of all things.
Wrong. The goal is never achieved, only arbitrarily.

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“Luke, you’re going to find that many of the truths we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view.” Obi-Wan Kenobi
Truth here means opinion.

I am not using the word this way.

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Believing a truth requires some trust and faith
Believing a fact only requires acceptance of proof
It's more rewarding to simplify the problem and find proof than to absorb the totality of the thing and find semi-proofs.

People are obsessed with definitive answers and getting their trophies to show their friends. I am suggesting that this is divergent from what the the quest for knowledge and understanding ought to be.

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Overall your first post makes too many assumptions and claims without anything real to back it up
Give me an assumption you don't like. We can discuss it further.

What this space for my reply to VoR on the necessity of the soul.

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Consciousness is not required for the body to operate.
Actually, it does. Are you saying that consciousness starts and ends at different points? That it is reborn in a non-continuous fashion? That's quite some mysticism you espouse there.
#23  
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Posts: 1537/1637
(16-Jan-2012 at 04:40)
Re: How the Afterlife Makes Perfect Sense

Originally Posted by Voice of Reason: View Post
A circular argument. The 'soul' has no material basis because it is just an idea, and 'no material basis' is just a restatement of 'it's an idea', so your argument boils down to "this idea must be true because it is an idea".
Sort of.

I am hinging my argument on how consciousness works. I first 'attack' the idea of consciousness as just an idea, in the same way you have done. But in the defense of consciousness, the responce is it 'lives' in the brain and has physical grounding.

I think this is bullocks, for reasons I will soon mention. But my line of reasoning is that if consciousness is immaterial, and the idea persists having merit (for self-evident reasons), then why shouldn't it continue beyond the material? This is where the notion of the soul is born, under this strict line of reasoning.

So in this manner, the conclusion is not the premise. Just to be clear enough, I hope.

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Consciousness *is* located in the brain, and this has been known for over a century. It is proven very simply: destroy the brain and consciousness disappears.
Activity in the brain does not prove that someone is conscious. It is evidence, but it is not proof.

Are you saying that the conditions of consciousness are the same as consciousness?

Kind of renders the notion as meaningless, don't you think?

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The only person who has suggested that is you. Your entire post is one big, red-herring argument.
I wanted to try and filter out possible counter-arguments before then arised, but perhaps that was futile/misleading.

Lots of essays are developed narrative in the form of fictional discussions but I guess there is a bit of an art to that that I don't yet grasp.

Quote:
There is nothing 'outside' scientific method, for the same reason that their is nothing 'outside' reason or 'outside' thought. The only people who say there is are crackpots who have had their silly ideas proved false.
Thought is reality?

Interesting.

I remember you arging the exact opposite in "Reality and Consciousness".

Let me put it back on you, then, by asking what you asked me: If there is nothing outside of thought then how do new ideas arise?

Last edited by Gotterdammerung, 16-Jan-2012 at 04:41.
#24  
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Posts: 6925/7006
(16-Jan-2012 at 11:28)


Quote:
But my line of reasoning is that if consciousness is immaterial, and the idea persists having merit (for self-evident reasons), then why shouldn't it continue beyond the material?
Exactly. Your reasoning starts with an 'if'. Big problem right there.


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Activity in the brain does not prove that someone is conscious.
I didn't say it was. I said no activity = no consciousness, therefore consciousness is located in the brain. I also said that consciousness is not an on-off switch. It has degrees, related to the level of brain activity.


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Thought is reality?
No... thought is *applied* to reality. Any of it. There is nothing that cannot be thought about, so nothing is 'outside' thought.


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I am questioning the nature of how facts 'simply are'.
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'Facts', as you describe, do not attempt to develop themselves.
Facts 'simply are' because they are not open to interpretation or to development.

Fact: 5x5=25 What is there to discuss? What is there to interpret? What is there to develop?

"Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel." But let it be considered that he did not mean a real and generous love of our country, but that pretended patriotism which so many, in all ages and countries, have made a cloak of self- interest.
#25  
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Posts: 1538/1637
(16-Jan-2012 at 22:14)
Re: How the Afterlife Makes Perfect Sense

Originally Posted by Voice of Reason: View Post
Exactly. Your reasoning starts with an 'if'. Big problem right there.
Why is that a big problem?

Every line of reasoning begins with an 'if'.

Regardless, I know where the qualifiers are and not developing the argument meaninglessly.

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I didn't say it was. I said no activity = no consciousness, therefore consciousness is located in the brain.
By your own standards, that's a circular argument. You are saying: consciousness is located in the brain because the brain is conscious. You haven't even shown what consciousness is, and if it is only brain activity, then that is something else, an impression, which doesn't not qualifiy as consciousness, does it?

I will repreat, "I think" is a subjective experience. How do you measure that? You can't. Consciousness is immaterial .

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No... thought is *applied* to reality. Any of it. There is nothing that cannot be thought about, so nothing is 'outside' thought.
How do you know what you don't know?

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Facts 'simply are' because they are not open to interpretation or to development.

Fact: 5x5=25 What is there to discuss? What is there to interpret? What is there to develop?
Exactly. The fact exists in the abstract. 5x5 is meaningless without an application. Even when applied theoretically, it has an assumed value, which beings its development as more than 5x5, as 5x5 in relation to X etc etc.

Eg. 5x5 oranges. What is an 'orange' exactly? It's not a perfect standard like 5, it's ambiguous. Hence that staleness of 5x5 in revealing the bigger picture. The solution may be to increase the detail of the equation to better represent what 5x5 oranges really is, but much like a dog chasing its own tail, the true representation (highest knowledge) can never be captured as 'fact'.
#26  
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Posts: 6929/7006
(17-Jan-2012 at 11:30)


Quote:
Why is that a big problem?

Every line of reasoning begins with an 'if'.
No they don't. A coherent argument always starts with what is known and develops into the unknown. You are starting from the unknown 'if'. In simple terms, your argument has no premise. None at all.


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By your own standards, that's a circular argument. You are saying: consciousness is located in the brain because the brain is conscious.
Rubbish. What is circular about saying that every time a brains stops working, the consciousness stops too? If, every time you pull *that* plug, the lights go out it is logical to conclude that *that* plug is connected the lights.


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How do you know what you don't know?
It is called 'learning'.


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What is an 'orange' exactly? It's not a perfect standard like 5, it's ambiguous.
Who cares what an orange is, exactly? That has nothing to do with the number 5, and no matter how you try to fog the issue 5 of them is still 5, and if you get 5 packs of 5 you will still result in 25.

"Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel." But let it be considered that he did not mean a real and generous love of our country, but that pretended patriotism which so many, in all ages and countries, have made a cloak of self- interest.
#27  
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Posts: 1542/1637
(18-Jan-2012 at 00:04)
Re: How the Afterlife Makes Perfect Sense

Originally Posted by Voice of Reason: View Post
No they don't. A coherent argument always starts with what is known and develops into the unknown. You are starting from the unknown 'if'. In simple terms, your argument has no premise. None at all.
It's an 'if' because no one can decide what consciousness is. I just telling you it's immaterial, OR if it is material, then the "I am" is an illusion/construction/impression that arises from complex, interconnected brain function.

If consciousness is bound in the material as a subjective experience of brain activity, then the experience of subjectivity is still an experience. That experience is immaterial, since there is no direct causality between brain activity and subjectivity, i.e. stimulating the brain is various ways down not trigger consciousness, only the content therein.

It is therefore impossible to say that a brain injury, or as you suggested, brain death, effects consciousness, since consciousness is a subjective experience.

Quote:
Rubbish. What is circular about saying that every time a brains stops working, the consciousness stops too? If, every time you pull *that* plug, the lights go out it is logical to conclude that *that* plug is connected the lights.
Consciousness is more like a light bulb inside a box. You can pull the plug on it, but there is no way to tell whether or not the light the went out. You can say, "well, there is no current, so the light must be off", which is a fair assumption, but there's no way to confirm it.

Given the nature of consciousness, hidden and fundamentally unaffected by external forces (brain injury), I can become open to the possibily that maybe the light is still on inside the box.

It's like there is someone in the box reporting how bright the light is, and you try and restrict the current and then ask if the light is getting any dimmer. The reporter says no, and that is scentifically significant.

Depending of how injuried the brain gets, the only response you may get from the question "how bright is the light now?" is "dirrrrrrrrrr", and that is not evidence of diminished consciousness, that is simply inconclusive.

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It is called 'learning'.
Yes, that's what it is called, but how does it work? Where does all the information come from?

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Who cares what an orange is, exactly? That has nothing to do with the number 5, and no matter how you try to fog the issue 5 of them is still 5, and if you get 5 packs of 5 you will still result in 25.
I care because 5x5 is abstract and non-descriptive. There's much more to the world than 5x5 etc.

Last edited by Gotterdammerung, 18-Jan-2012 at 00:12.
#28  
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Posts: 1543/1637
(18-Jan-2012 at 00:26)
[
Shit, I've dug myself into a hole.

Even if consciousness continues after the death of the body, how am I going to prove that there is a soul or etheral body or whatever for the consciousness to inhabit?

I can't. Unless I can show how the soul already inhabits the body and actively informs the consciousness through some sensory mechanism which it will then use to navigate the afterlife. That's going to be tricky.

For now I am going to have to restrict my definition of the afterlife to simply conscious-continuation. I can lead the argument to the afterlife, but I cannot explain what this will look like, but that still technically satifies the criteria.
]
#29  
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Posts: 6933/7006
(18-Jan-2012 at 13:21)


Quote:
It's an 'if' because no one can decide what consciousness is.
Speak for yourself, not the rest of us. Consciousness is defined as being aware of your own existence, which requires a functioning brain capable of abstract thought. This just happens to be pretty much what is needed for language to develop too, which is why I am familiar with the issue.

The 'problem' is that the neo-mystic brigade use the term so loosely and inaccurately, as though it is a synonym for soul/mind/spirit/blah blah.


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there is no direct causality between brain activity and subjectivity
Yes there is. Subjectivity (like language) requires an awareness of 'I', which requires a brain that works and has sufficient power to generate self-awareness.


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Depending of how injuried the brain gets, the only response you may get from the question "how bright is the light now?" is "dirrrrrrrrrr", and that is not evidence of diminished consciousness, that is simply inconclusive.
Brain activity can be measured directly, which is pretty conclusive. A brain dead corpse is not self-aware because the brain is not functioning.


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Yes, that's what it is called, but how does it work?
Neurons that fire together, wire together.


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Where does all the information come from?
Past learning.


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I care because 5x5 is abstract and non-descriptive.
Correct. It just is, as we said earlier.

"Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel." But let it be considered that he did not mean a real and generous love of our country, but that pretended patriotism which so many, in all ages and countries, have made a cloak of self- interest.
#30  
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Posts: 1547/1637
(19-Jan-2012 at 04:30)
Re: How the Afterlife Makes Perfect Sense

Originally Posted by Voice of Reason: View Post
Consciousness is defined as being aware of your own existence, which requires a functioning brain capable of abstract thought.
Abstract thought, as in math calculations? A computer does math, is a computer aware of its own existance?

You can't show why humans are self aware nor that the brain is capable of it because it is 'abstract'.

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Subjectivity (like language) requires an awareness of 'I', which requires a brain that works and has sufficient power to generate self-awareness.
As you said, language requires self-awareness, but the 'I' is only symbolic. Like X is symbolic to algabra. Generation of language is result of calculation, information formed as a result of self-awareness. This calculation requires a brain, yes, but self-awareness itself is illusive. Calculations alone cannot generate self-awareness (as in computers), can they?

So how does the brain make the leap between calculation and self-awareness, by being 'abstract', no doubt?

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Past learning.
What is this ontological terror you've constructed?

All knowledge is generated by past knowledge desending back the almighty primal source of total, absolute knowledge?

In other words, what is the prime mover that is responcible for all knowledge and learning, that defines cause and effect by spontaneously generating first knowledge into the universe?

Quote:
Correct. It just is, as we said earlier.
Correct.
#31  
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Posts: 1549/1637
(19-Jan-2012 at 06:35)
O.K. here we go.

My proof that the soul exists:

1. No matter how materially identical two subjects are, their self-awareness will always be unique, due to the physical fact that are distinct from one another.

2. This seperation proves that no amount of material determinism can ever fully account for the observable reality experienced by the subjects.

3. Having exhausted material explanation, there must be an immaterial explanation responcible for the uniqueness observed in the subjects. Namely, their soul.
#32  
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Posts: 6934/7006
(19-Jan-2012 at 10:08)


Quote:
Abstract thought, as in math calculations? A computer does math, is a computer aware of its own existance?
Don't be silly. Computers compute. They don't think.


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You can't show why humans are self aware nor that the brain is capable of it because it is 'abstract'.
I am aware of my own existence. If you are not, you have a very serious problem.


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As you said, language requires self-awareness, but the 'I' is only symbolic.
Only in so far as all language is symbolic. 'I' symbolises the idea of self, which is self awareness, which requires abstract thought.


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Generation of language is result of calculation, information formed as a result of self-awareness.
Where on earth do you get that nonsense from?

Language is generated by linking sounds to ideas. There is no calculation involved at all.


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All knowledge is generated by past knowledge desending back the almighty primal source of total, absolute knowledge?
Who, apart from you, said anything about a primal source of absolute knowledge?

You know all that stuff you learned in school? That is past learning - somebody discovered it, recorded it, and passed it onto others to learn. It is as simple as that. Today, people are still discovering new things, recording them, and in due course will pass them on to others to learn.

Not a single primal source of absolute knowledge in sight...


Quote:
My proof that the soul exists:

1. No matter how materially identical two subjects are, their self-awareness will always be unique, due to the physical fact that are distinct from one another.

2. This seperation proves that no amount of material determinism can ever fully account for the observable reality experienced by the subjects.

3. Having exhausted material explanation, there must be an immaterial explanation responcible for the uniqueness observed in the subjects. Namely, their soul.
People are different, therefore they must have souls? What rubbish is that? No two rocks are identical either, therefore they must have souls...

1) Big logical hole in your argument: you are equating experience with self-awareness, but they are not the same thing at all. Self-awareness is not unique. Every conscious human has it by definition.

2) My observable reality is fully accounted for. What observed reality are you struggling with?

3) Nope. Material explanation covers it all. Big brains = self-awareness. End of problem.

"Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel." But let it be considered that he did not mean a real and generous love of our country, but that pretended patriotism which so many, in all ages and countries, have made a cloak of self- interest.
#33  
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Posts: 1550/1637
(19-Jan-2012 at 11:09)
Re: How the Afterlife Makes Perfect Sense

Originally Posted by Voice of Reason: View Post
Language is generated by linking sounds to ideas. There is no calculation involved at all.
Neurologically, there's quite a bit going on, which is way human have language and gold fish don't.

Quote:
Who, apart from you, said anything about a primal source of absolute knowledge?
Logic did. You said that all new information came from learning and all that learning came form past learning. Since learning, as you say, is the source of all knowledge, then the 'first learning' as it were, must be the source of all knowledge.

Quote:
You know all that stuff you learned in school? That is past learning - somebody discovered it, recorded it, and passed it onto others to learn. It is as simple as that. Today, people are still discovering new things, recording them, and in due course will pass them on to others to learn.
You said that nothing existed outside of thought. So, again, I ask you, how is thought producing new discoveries, if it is not either (a) fuelled by information outside of thought - the 'external world' - or (b) produced spontaneously by the mind itself.

So far all you have said is that learning is a continual self-replicating chain of thought, which is ontologically flawed for reasons I've clearly outlined.

[...]

Quote:
People are different, therefore they must have souls? What rubbish is that? No two rocks are identical either, therefore they must have souls...
Rocks don't have self awareness. Two rocks who are material clones of each are not unique. However self awareness creates uniqueness because it cannot be cloned, even if the material subject are perfect copies of one another.

Quote:
1) Big logical hole in your argument: you are equating experience with self-awareness, but they are not the same thing at all. Self-awareness is not unique. Every conscious human has it by definition.
Self-awareness is a perspective that exists indepentant of experience. This perspective always orientates the subject uniquely.

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2) My observable reality is fully accounted for. What observed reality are you struggling with?
Materialism cannot account for unique perspectives. Two exact same subjects, in exact some environments, will still be seperate due being able to 'see themselves' with and understand that they have personalized perspectives.

Quote:
3) Nope. Material explanation covers it all. Big brains = self-awareness. End of problem.
The fact that there is more than one self-awareness means that there are always going to be unique perspectives which material explanation can never reconcile, since no matter have perfectly you master and reconstruct material bodies, self-awareness will always make the perspective unique and prove that the subjects have souls.
#34  
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Posts: 6936/7006
(19-Jan-2012 at 11:49)


Quote:
Neurologically, there's quite a bit going on, which is way human have language and gold fish don't.
That is the view popular amongst people who know nothing of language.


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Logic did. You said that all new information came from learning and all that learning came form past learning. Since learning, as you say, is the source of all knowledge, then the 'first learning' as it were, must be the source of all knowledge.
There is nothing logical about that. It makes as much sense as 'logically' concluding that the first brick laid in a building must the primal source of absolute buildings.


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So, again, I ask you, how is thought producing new discoveries
By thought. You answered it yourself.


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However self awareness creates uniqueness because it cannot be cloned
Ever heard of babies?


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Self-awareness is a perspective that exists indepentant of experience.
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The fact that there is more than one self-awareness means that there are always going to be unique perspectives
Self-awareness is not a perspective, and you are still confusing self-awareness with experience.


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Materialism cannot account for unique perspectives.
Yes it can. Neurons that fire together wire together.


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self-awareness will always make the perspective unique and prove that the subjects have souls.
*Experience* makes individual perspectives unique, by ensuring that all brains are unique. That explains it all. No need to invent this soul thing to explain anything.

"Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel." But let it be considered that he did not mean a real and generous love of our country, but that pretended patriotism which so many, in all ages and countries, have made a cloak of self- interest.
#35  
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Posts: 1552/1637
(19-Jan-2012 at 22:30)
Re: How the Afterlife Makes Perfect Sense

Originally Posted by Voice of Reason: View Post
That is the view popular amongst people who know nothing of language.
O.K. I know nothing of language.

What does language have to do with sentience? Can't a computer randomly assign letters to processes?

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There is nothing logical about that. It makes as much sense as 'logically' concluding that the first brick laid in a building must the primal source of absolute buildings.
That metaphor doesn't really apply. We are talking about epistemology. You are saying something like all bricks are sourced from the primal brick. In spirit, this is true, but obviously it doesn't work logically.

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Ever heard of babies?
Maybe.

How do babies not have unique perspectives?

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Self-awareness is not a perspective, and you are still confusing self-awareness with experience.
So self-awareness is experience?

Then what is the physical orientation which distinguishes the subject, what's that called smarty pants?

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Yes it can. Neurons that fire together wire together.
I wonder if you have heard of the term 'philosophical zombie'.

Just because someone has neurons that fire together doesn't mean they are self-aware.

Anyway, my argument has to do with the unique physical property of self-awareness which creates the personal 'bubble' in the universe.

"There may be many bubbles, but this bubble is mine." And so on.

No matter how many clones you make, this sentance still applies to each of them.

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*Experience* makes individual perspectives unique, by ensuring that all brains are unique. That explains it all. No need to invent this soul thing to explain anything.
Experience is apart of it, but in theory clones in a laboratory could also share the same exact experiences hence neuron structure. In this instance, the personal statement "there may be many bubbles, but this bubble is mine" does not diminish its relevance in each subject, and that contradicts your 'experience' explanation, since a unique element still exists in each subject, even though they are physically identitcal in every possible way.

Yeah?
#36  
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Posts: 6940/7006
(20-Jan-2012 at 12:17)


Quote:
O.K. I know nothing of language.

What does language have to do with sentience? Can't a computer randomly assign letters to processes?
Language requires a subject, an I, which is the same as self-awareness AKA consciousness. In simple terms, without consciousness you can't have a language.

Language also requires symbolic thought, the ability to think about things that are not there, AKA abstract thought. Consciousness too requires this, as without it you would only be self-aware when you looked in a mirror.

This is confirmed by babies, who have no self-awareness at birth. Self-awareness develops at the same time as babies start to pick up language.


Quote:
That metaphor doesn't really apply. We are talking about epistemology. You are saying something like all bricks are sourced from the primal brick. In spirit, this is true, but obviously it doesn't work logically.
It is as logical (or illogical) as your primal source of knowledge.


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So self-awareness is experience?
Self-awareness is self-awareness, and experience is experience, and you are pretending the two things are the same.


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Just because someone has neurons that fire together doesn't mean they are self-aware.
I didn't say they did. I said that neurons firing together and wiring together ensures that no two brains are, or can be, identical, which explains individuality without having to invent a soul.


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in theory clones in a laboratory could also share the same exact experiences hence neuron structure
... and in theory the result would be identical perspectives on the world.


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In this instance, the personal statement "there may be many bubbles, but this bubble is mine" does not diminish its relevance in each subject, and that contradicts your 'experience' explanation, since a unique element still exists in each subject, even though they are physically identitcal in every possible way.

Yeah?
No.

It just means that you would have two identical bubbles, neither of which would be unique by definition.

Your argument amounts to "what if we had two identical people, living identical lives, but are not identical when I don't want them to be?" They are either identical or they are not - you are wanting them to be both at the same time which is logical nonsense.

"Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel." But let it be considered that he did not mean a real and generous love of our country, but that pretended patriotism which so many, in all ages and countries, have made a cloak of self- interest.
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(20-Jan-2012 at 21:28)
Re: How the Afterlife Makes Perfect Sense

Originally Posted by Voice of Reason: View Post
Language requires a subject, an I, which is the same as self-awareness AKA consciousness. In simple terms, without consciousness you can't have a language.

Language also requires symbolic thought, the ability to think about things that are not there, AKA abstract thought. Consciousness too requires this, as without it you would only be self-aware when you looked in a mirror.

This is confirmed by babies, who have no self-awareness at birth. Self-awareness develops at the same time as babies start to pick up language.
I appreciate the insight. I agree about the babies.

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It is as logical (or illogical) as your primal source of knowledge.
That was my conclusion for your ontological argument of learning.

Personally I think that knowledge is spontaneous.

[quote[Self-awareness is self-awareness, and experience is experience, and you are pretending the two things are the same.[/quote]

Possibily. I will have to check.

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I didn't say they did. I said that neurons firing together and wiring together ensures that no two brains are, or can be, identical, which explains individuality without having to invent a soul.
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... and in theory the result would be identical perspectives on the world.
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It just means that you would have two identical bubbles, neither of which would be unique by definition.
Indentical save for the fact that they are seperate from one another which, by definition, cannot ever occupy the same space or thought process.

Inanimate objects like rocks cannot observe in their own right, therefore, two indentical rocks can be shown to be just that. But as the capacity to observe is present in the subjects, then there is a problem of other minds, and how the observer and the subjects are now interchangable. So that in practice the observer can only ever be arbitrarily assigned.

Since the observer is theoretically dynamic, each potential subject must be said to be in relation to one another, and thus represent siginifcant places in the subject-observer arrangement, in their own right.

Does this make them unique? Maybe that word is too materialistic to capture the multiplicity of subjectivity. In abstract thought it is at least necessary to differenciate between multible subjects, especially when said subjects can be said to be their own observer, and no 'I' can be the same. Yes, they can materially be identical, but the fluidity between subjects and observers makes it problematic to leave it at that. By definition, they are the same, but that definition does not encompass the multiplicity of subjectivity. So I need a new word besides unique.
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Posts: 6942/7006
(21-Jan-2012 at 02:05)


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I appreciate the insight.
You are welcome.


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That was my conclusion for your ontological argument of learning.

Personally I think that knowledge is spontaneous.
In what way is is ontological? We are all born with little or no knowledge, and then spend a life time learning (except the wilfully ignorant) by moving from the known to the unknown.


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Indentical save for the fact that they are seperate from one another which, by definition, cannot ever occupy the same space or thought process.
If their brains really were identical, their thoughts would be too. Identical twins, who are as close as we can get to identical brains (genetically identical; often very similar experiences) also have very similar thoughts in terms of likes and opinions.


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Yes, they can materially be identical, but the fluidity between subjects and observers makes it problematic to leave it at that. By definition, they are the same, but that definition does not encompass the multiplicity of subjectivity.
Correct. It is impossible for two brains to be identical. Which explains individuality without having to imagine a soul.

"Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel." But let it be considered that he did not mean a real and generous love of our country, but that pretended patriotism which so many, in all ages and countries, have made a cloak of self- interest.
#39  
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Posts: 1561/1637
(23-Jan-2012 at 02:30)
Re: How the Afterlife Makes Perfect Sense

Originally Posted by Voice of Reason: View Post
In what way is is ontological? We are all born with little or no knowledge, and then spend a life time learning (except the wilfully ignorant) by moving from the known to the unknown.
So it would seem.

I coined it ontological because the problems are reminiscent of this argument.

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If their brains really were identical, their thoughts would be too. Identical twins, who are as close as we can get to identical brains (genetically identical; often very similar experiences) also have very similar thoughts in terms of likes and opinions.
I don't deny this at all. I just wanted to leverage the logical inconsistancy that even though two subjects may be the same they still experience different realities due to their seperate orientation in space.

I don't know maybe this is cheating or constituides an argument more metaphysical than physical.

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Correct. It is impossible for two brains to be identical. Which explains individuality without having to imagine a soul.
My proof is based on a hypothetical situation, let's say set in a lab of the future with two indentical brains in a seperate vats being stimulated in identical ways.

Physically, there is no difference between these two brains and any other indentical inanimate objects, say, two rocks. However there is still a difference in each being a subject so they cannot be said to be like the two rocks anymore. This seems to defy empirical sensibilities.

That is my argument in nutshell, if that makes more sense.
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