Politics, God and Religion vs. Science

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High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
-A race of corn eaters
Nov 29, 2012 - 03:16pm PT
Here, more arm waving...

"You and I are streaming data engines." It is a model of consciousness that Mr. Hawkins has promoted not just in the tech world, but to neuroscientists.

http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/11/28/jeff-hawkins-develops-a-brainy-big-data-company/

re: Jeff Hawkins



If only a couple of us here support the mind-brain model (of sentience, consciousness, etc.) - which by all posts appear so - then at least we are in good company. :)
MikeL

climber
SANTA CLARA, CA
Nov 29, 2012 - 03:31pm PT
Ed:

Did you say . . .

(i) mind's activities are recorded (by writing) and are then "tuned into" by another mind?

Does that mean that an alignment of minds is an indication of mind that lies outside of the brain? If so, then doesn't that suggest that there is some part of consciousness that (socially?) lies outside the brain?

Or,

(ii) are records (narratives, texts, or something like them) simply one form of communication that provides sense data (stimuli) for an organism's processes?

Of course, what I'm thinking already is that if there are parts of mind that lie outside the brain, then it opens pandora's box for strict materialists.

To be fair, here's I'm at today: although I don't currently agree that mind resides completely in the brain, I would agree with Dr. F. if he were to change his statement slightly from "No brain, no mind" to "No brain, no consciousness." For me, mind includes unconsciousness and other states as well as objects in the world, many of which appear to be external to the body. (And, oh yeah, I make distinctions about awareness vs. mind vs. consciousness vs. brains.)

(And thanks, Ed. My tongue has a sore from biting down on it.)


Cintune:

I think you can drop universal "this" and "that" from your argument. You have a good one, I think, just as you presented it. Religions are mostly death-denial projects. So are most other things in life, I'd say.


Why are you unhappy? Because 99.9 per cent of everything you do is for yourself. And there isn't one.
(Wei-wu-wei)

:-)
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Nov 29, 2012 - 06:10pm PT
"Mind is what the brain does."

Would this actually play in the scientific world, that is, falling rocks is what gravity does.

Another thing, Fruitcake, just because the conversation has forsaken your muddy path as a certain dead end does not mean that there is no progress being made. I've learned a lot.

I think you have simply and inadvertently confessed that, like Harris and others of his cloth, you have learned nothing, perhaps owning to your refusal to listen and process new information differing from your own. Ask Harris when the last time he ever showed up at a panel to learn. He's there to preach. Like you. But the congregation chuckles. Your thinking has all the nuance of a jackhammer - but none of the weight.

You guys are like characters in the old Seinfeld series (but funny in a different, sad kind of way): You cannot learn anything new so you cannot change, a fact visible to everyone but you, apparently.

JL
jstan

climber
Nov 29, 2012 - 06:52pm PT
How do we use the word mind? One very old way is

My mind is made up.

What does that usage say?
It says when we refer to one's mind we refer to some state of the brain. When the person is stimulated in some way the person's response is preprogrammed.
High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
-A race of corn eaters
Nov 29, 2012 - 07:05pm PT
What a circle jerk we have here.

Once again, pithy statements by Lunko. Yes, true to form. But he's know it and I know it: underneath, it's all bullsh#t.

"Mind is what the brain does."

 Pumping blood is what the heart does.
 Filtering blood is what the kidneys do.
 Focusing light rays is what the lenses of the eyes do.
 Contracting muscle is what actin and myosin filaments do.


You 3-5 in your sophisticated, highly philosophical, highly-introspective circle jerk have fun and have at it. You won't get any more interference from me, I'll leave it. (I'll let it go - same as that other circle jerk of the Christians concerning the blood of Christ, the love and work of the Holy Spirit, etc..) Enjoy yourselves.
BLUEBLOCR

Social climber
joshua tree
Nov 29, 2012 - 07:24pm PT
Largo, Nice-ly said!
I'm sorry you have to be brought to criticize..

I to am much appreciative of this thread and ALL your thoughts!
I have prolly learned the most.

My Spiritual knowledge much surpasses my scientific knowledge. If you havnt noticed. LOL
My only motive is to compare notes. I'm certainly not here to convert any one!
Thats not my job. That's the job of the Holy Spirit

Jus
BB
Dr. F.

Ice climber
SoCal
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 29, 2012 - 07:31pm PT
Most things can be defined in very simple terms.

When extra fancy non-specific language becomes necessary, then you can often assume that they are just trying to bamboozle you.

When myths and stories in books are all you have, then you are really in trouble.
Dr. F.

Ice climber
SoCal
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 29, 2012 - 07:37pm PT
Can't learn or change??
What the hell are you talking about, Only Your side are the ones that refuse to accept change.

All of us on this side have changed with the wind of where the facts lead us.

Like 911, I have been arguing on the 911 thread that there were No rigged explosives in the buildings before hand, and I have alot of people debating the opposite.

But if they had one bit of evidence that would seal their argument, then I would say I was wrong, Bush and Cheney did rig the TTs with explosives.

Our side is defined by our acceptance and willingness to learn.
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Nov 29, 2012 - 09:24pm PT
When myths and stories in books are all you have, then you are really in trouble.
-


Myths and stories are meant to start where our numbers and other symbols leave off. If you're looking at myths to tell you literal truths, that might mean those are the only kinds of truths you understand. Myths have always told us something about being alive that other means could not accomplish. What do you imagine they are saying?

We could just easily say that if all we had were literal descriptions of things, we would really be in trouble.

JL
MH2

climber
Nov 29, 2012 - 10:30pm PT
Up to now, 99% of my interest in neurophysiology has had to do with functions of little or no interest to philosophy or psychology. It might be worth pointing out, though, that important knowledge of how memory works was developed from studies on a simple reflex in a marine invertebrate. Now, after reading what a brilliant mathematical physicist has to say about consciousness, I'm going 100% low-level.


Of far more interest on this thread was how jstan, jennie, and Jan exchanged views on when it might not be okay to follow orders. I don't quite get Blueblocr's position, and it looks like it could change, but I agree with him that once you are in the military your alternative to obeying your commander could come down to getting killed yourself, or perhaps worse, not an easy choice.


I don't know what religions teach about recognizing the line between morally okay military orders and immoral orders, and what to do if the order is immoral. As a good example of what a religious person might do, however, I like Dietrich Bonhoeffer. He wasn't in the military but he participated in a plot to kill Hitler and was executed for it.
High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
-A race of corn eaters
Nov 29, 2012 - 10:57pm PT
Now, after reading what a brilliant mathematical physicist has to say about consciousness, I'm going 100% low-level.
So to be clear, what does "going 100% low-level" mean?

(I think I know, but I'd like to know I know. Thanks.)

.....

...with functions of little or no interest to philosophy or psychology

You said something similar a few pages back, too, which struck me. Just for sake of comparison, in my department of neurobiology ending 20 years ago, nothing was MORE interesting - across all working groups in the depart - than philosophizing about neuroscience and its implications for society, philosophies of life, religions, law and criminal justice, etc.. - in fact, much along the lines we see today among thought leaders in the field and related fields.

Different strokes for different folks, eh? Makes the world more interesting (I guess).

And, as example, a copy of Penrose's book at the time -ENM - could be found in just about every lab in the department.

Here it is from the 19 Nov...
Jstan's wonderful story reminds me of my own graduate student days in neurophysiology. Not once, either in the lab or outside it, was basis of consciousness discussed. It was understood that this was not an approachable research topic, and not interesting to talk about compared to cars, music, etc. As with religion, you were welcome to your opinion but no one felt a need to hear it.

My experience across six years in my neurobiology depart and labs could not have been more different. For the record.
Jan

Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
Nov 29, 2012 - 11:56pm PT
Perhaps I misunderstood blueblocr but I thought he was referring to all of society, not just the military?? However, even within the military of European based countries and many others, we have had since WWII, a code which says that you are allowed to disobey unlawful orders. Violation of either the Geneva Conventions or the Constitution of the U.S. are considered unlawful orders.

If a superior officer orders the killing of civilians for example, the lowest enlisted person has the legal right to refuse that order. Of course peer pressure being what it is, very few would have the courage to do that. Meanwhile we all better hope that most people in the military would refuse to take part in a coup if a few crazy officers ordered them to overthrow our government.

As for pacifism as a principle, there is a certain amount of hypocrisy in enjoying freedoms which other people died for and that's why I am not a complete pacifist. For those who were, it made a lot more sense to let them do alternative social service than throw them in jail at taxpayer expense. Quakers served as non combatents in the medical corps in WWII, suffered high casualty rates because of their continuous exposure on the field, and were often decorated.

The problem which is still not resolved in my mind, is what to do with selective conscientious objection when a large number of people are no longer willing to serve, as in Vietnam. The volunteer military is a good solution in some ways, but mindful of history, an elite and isolated corps of heavily armed people in not good practice for a democracy. Not to mention it seems as unfair for them to sacrifice on our behalf (for ten long years in the most recent case) while the rest of us enjoy life as usual, as it does for conscientious objectors not to have defended the country.

As almost always, the important issues are shades of gray.
WBraun

climber
Nov 30, 2012 - 12:04am PT
If a superior officer orders the killing of civilians

The warrior class (Kshatriya class of men) are never allowed to kill civilians.

The stupid modern pussy ass so called military that kill civilians are condemned to the class of "lowest of mankind".

Modern warfare is the works of pussies when they target civilians and are never respected .......
Jingy

climber
Somewhere out there
Nov 30, 2012 - 09:07am PT
HFCS beat me to it....

Does the Universe Have Purpose?


I say no. And there does not have to be a better answer than that.

WBraun

climber
Nov 30, 2012 - 10:41am PT
Does the Universe Have Purpose?

That means you are stupid and you have no purpose either.

You just aimlessly and blindly talk here and go about your day.

But everywhere we go we see purpose ......
MikeL

climber
SANTA CLARA, CA
Nov 30, 2012 - 11:01am PT
Jingy and HF said, supplemented by the video:
Does the Universe Have Purpose? I say no. And there does not have to be a better answer than that.

Concepts. Just more and more concepts.

The mind is infinitely energetic and creative. It does nothing but Make Sense. (Think about those two words together.) There's no end to it. There never has been. (Think of one single thing that one cannot make sense of.)

There does not have to be anything . . . other than the consciousness of your existence.
MH2

climber
Nov 30, 2012 - 11:06am PT
MikeL, The mind enjoys stuff, too.
High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
-A race of corn eaters
Nov 30, 2012 - 11:18am PT
mh2 wrote,
Now, after reading what a brilliant mathematical physicist has to say about consciousness, I'm going 100% low-level.

So this is it, you're not going to elaborate beyond this ambiguous comment regarding Penrose's treatment of consciousness (after reading three books)?

If so, such a cop out. :(

Dr. F.

Ice climber
SoCal
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 30, 2012 - 11:51am PT
Does an ant have purpose?
a whale?

how about a single bacteria cell?

No, none of them have any purpose, they will live and then die

Only the species as a whole has a purpose: and that is to procreate.

And Man is exactly the same.
IMO
MH2

climber
Nov 30, 2012 - 12:33pm PT
HFCS,

I haven't got hold of The Road to Reality, yet. I'm not sure it exists: even though the library computer shows a copy it has been DUE since 11 November, the day I first tried to get it.


About my low-level focus; I am going to leave any connections between neuroscience and philosophy, etc., to others. I am still very interested in why and how some birds learn their vocalizations from their parents, and in geographical differences in vocalization within species.

Humans are too complicated. We get hung up on things. What does it mean to understand something? If you can't understand what it means to understand, how can you understand?
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