What is "Mind?"

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High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
Aug 14, 2014 - 11:17am PT
There is almost no empirical justification to believe that mind is matter.

This is bogus. Only because this is the internet do you get away with it.

Mind is mental function. Mental function is part of what the nervous system of the body does. To date, there is overwhelming circumstantial evidence from all corners of science that mental function results from nervous system processing. We just don't know the critical details of the underlying mechanisms to this so-called Hard Problem. Maybe we never will given our finite intelligence, limits to knowledge, potential ending of advanced civilization, etc.. But it's pretty clear, at least to those savvy enough and armed with the right life experience and edu, that those 100 trillion plus parts, connections and interactions at the microstructure level are doing something more than cooling the body, lol!

MikeL and Largo, two peas in a pod.
Tvash

climber
Seattle
Aug 14, 2014 - 11:36am PT
Mind isn't matter.

It's matter + energy.
High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
Aug 14, 2014 - 11:39am PT
And what's matter but localized energy.

No matter, I'm convinced: My nervous system and how it interacts with the environ is the "seat" of my consciousness. It's a good mind-brain, all things considered, no complaints. ;)
MH2

climber
Aug 14, 2014 - 11:51am PT
The topic thread is what is mind, not what is brain. (MikeL)


Not true. The thread topic is What is "Mind?"


The subjective aspects of mind have been explored, pondered, and philosophized for ages. Not a lot new has been turned up recently. In contrast, understanding of how the brain works is making steady progress. Unless you claim that mind has no connection with brain you should not object to talk about brain function. It may have relevance to statements made about "mind."

And remember that JL was once a student of EEGs.
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
Maestro, Ecosystem Ministry, Fatcrackistan
Aug 14, 2014 - 12:22pm PT
No brain no thought no mind no life.

DMT
PSP also PP

Trad climber
Berkeley
Aug 14, 2014 - 12:23pm PT
Jgill said “First we narrow focus on a thing. This prompts automatic word and symbol generation from brain, a whole bunch of data streams rushing at us about "that" out there, or "this" (like a feeling or memory etc.) in here (JL)

To test this hypothesis, I just spent five minutes staring at the stapler on my desk. At first, the word "stapler" came, then . . . nothing. No data stream rushing at me, no sense of "out there" as opposed to "in here", or anything else. Just a stapler that didn't even seem separate from its surroundings. Just a stapler. No busy thoughts or conjectures. Just a stapler. No analysis of what it does or deliberations on its mechanics. Just a stapler. No thoughts at all. So I guess "narrow focus" needs to be refined a bit.

Maybe it's just my age.”


What is a Stapler?

This question is a very classic beginners Koan used at the Kwan Um School of Zen. It can be used with almost any object. Usually the question is what is this? As the teacher points to the object.

If you say it is a stapler the teacher points out you are attached to name and form and if you say nothing you are attached to emptiness. So what is it?



High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
Aug 14, 2014 - 03:13pm PT
If more evidence is needed animals have minds, here you go...



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EWemgBG5llc

But hold on...

"Sorry to burst your bubble but.. the Dog isn't trying to save the fish. He think's he is burying it. He's using the water to bury it but doesn't realize that water is not dirt, and hence he cannot successfully do the job properly.... Canines are not intellectual enough to know that a fish needs water to "breathe" or survive."

Seems to have validity as well. Oh what an amazing mystery it is!

What is like to be... a dog? lol!!
Tvash

climber
Seattle
Aug 14, 2014 - 03:20pm PT
Grab it and staple the teacher's forehead.

No words.

No thing.

Pure sentience.

MikeL

Social climber
Seattle, WA
Aug 14, 2014 - 03:55pm PT
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/17/magazine/should-you-fear-the-pizzly-bear.html

At the time, scientists thought that because genetic diversity came from spontaneous mutations and because useful variants arose only after thousands of generations, evolution had to proceed slowly. But as the Grants watched the finches’ beaks change over a few generations, they realized that the process of hybridization could speed up evolution. The birds were exchanging genetic traits that had been, in effect, already field-tested.

. . . .

As Brendan Kelly, the chief scientist at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, told me: “The dirty secret of biology is that the fundamental unit of science — i.e., species — in fact can’t be adequately defined.”

. . . . .

Fusion . . . [is a] realization [that] is more than one of scientific clarity; it goes to the heart of conservation efforts, offering new ways to think about what we’re trying to conserve.

. . . .

“Biodiversity has developed in a web of life rather than a tree of life,” Arnold told me. That interconnectedness lends strength. “It’s sort of cool that evolution is really messy.”
-----------------------------



All reality appears to be this way. Every time you think you finally really know something, something comes along and pulls the ground from underneath your feet. Reality is just too fluid, too infinite, ever-changing, too much of a mirage to sit still for categorizations of any kind.

Every peer-reviewed paper should start with something like, "Here's what we think is sort of happening . . . ."
MikeL

Social climber
Seattle, WA
Aug 14, 2014 - 04:00pm PT
HFCS: We just don't know the critical details of the underlying mechanisms to this so-called Hard Problem.


:-)

Then how do you think that you know anything? By the weight of the paper of the journals that have been published on the topic?
MikeL

Social climber
Seattle, WA
Aug 14, 2014 - 04:04pm PT
The walls of knowledge are constantly crumbling before our eyes. Like frantic bricklayers, people are constantly trying to erect new ones. But every one of them finally seems to crumble as well. Nothing lasts. Not one thing.

Energy?
Tvash

climber
Seattle
Aug 14, 2014 - 04:09pm PT
The dog video illustrates our propensity to assign human-like consciousness to the world around us.

As for what the dog's really up to? Maybe he just likes the smell of that water. Dog's love to rub stinky stuff all over themselves.
PSP also PP

Trad climber
Berkeley
Aug 14, 2014 - 04:10pm PT
Tvash said"Grab it and staple the teacher's forehead.

No words.

No thing.

Pure sentience. "

Exactly; the answer moves beyond the discursive box.

The lesson is to percieve clearly and then function correctly. (stapling the teachers head wouldn't necessarily be correct function but you got out of the discursive box)

So then ; What is mind?
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
Maestro, Ecosystem Ministry, Fatcrackistan
Aug 14, 2014 - 04:12pm PT
Nothing lasts. Not one thing.

This is correct. Time itself turns to nothingness.

This clearly bothers you deeply as you bring it up in most every post.

Anyway.

DMT
Tvash

climber
Seattle
Aug 14, 2014 - 04:21pm PT
It's not like I'm going to take out extra insurance or anything, though.
BLUEBLOCR

Social climber
joshua tree
Aug 14, 2014 - 06:23pm PT
True that, MikeL!


Mind isn't matter.

It's matter + energy

Maybe, matter + energy + info?

Matter without energy has no form!

Energy without matter has no ability!?

Energy's formed the earth!

Energyless matter has no info!

Does energy harbor info?

Together do they expose info?

Maybe there's more to energy than we see? HeHe
Tvash

climber
Seattle
Aug 14, 2014 - 06:25pm PT
I'm a lot more Zen than you might think.
jgill

Boulder climber
Colorado
Aug 14, 2014 - 09:37pm PT
Senility comes quickly enough to us oldtimers: I would rather remember that stapler is called "stapler" than be forced to pick it up and staple something while in a vacuous mental state dwindling to emptiness. It's bad enough I've been assured that "I" is not real and I'd be better off without it! This is the result of two millennia of meditative exercises?

The phenomenon of "blind sight" probably tells us something about attention and awareness. The more we learn, the more it seems we are indeed biological machines.
MH2

climber
Aug 14, 2014 - 09:48pm PT
I'm a lot more Zen than you might think. (Tvash)


I'm a lot more Fly than I might think.


"It is astonishing how much of a fly's life is spent doing nothing."

To Know a Fly
Vincent Dethier
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
Maestro, Ecosystem Ministry, Fatcrackistan
Aug 15, 2014 - 06:51am PT
Energyless matter has no info!

There... is... no... such... thing.

DMT
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