Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Philosophytalks on September 25th, 2014, 6:00 pm 

Hey Paradox,

Thank you for posting that in regards to my point; I never have read that article before, it was just a personal view but thank you for highlighting how it does back up my point and making it seem less "illogical".

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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Paradox on September 25th, 2014, 6:01 pm 

It does not phase me to be wrong. I’m here to learn as well.
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Paradox on September 25th, 2014, 6:09 pm 

Besides,

We would not have a discussion if everyone agreed now would we?
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Paradox on September 25th, 2014, 6:27 pm 

Wow PT,

How about this one... “I may not have all the answers, but I ask the right questions"
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Philosophytalks on September 25th, 2014, 6:30 pm 

What about that phrase Paradox?

It is a very good phrase though and I think it is applicable to life most definitely!
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby neuro on September 25th, 2014, 6:31 pm 

Paradox » September 25th, 2014, 11:27 pm wrote:How about this one... “I may not have all the answers, but I ask the right questions"


Yeah, that would be nice
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Paradox on September 25th, 2014, 7:28 pm 

PT,

I am curious to know what your take is on the totality of existence. I hope I’m not engaging you too much, but I live to hear explainations I have never heard and that at the same time make sense. You appear practical in your thinking thus far and that is far ahead of a young persons development IMO these days.

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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Paradox on September 25th, 2014, 7:36 pm 

You are young aren't you? LOL
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Don Juan on September 25th, 2014, 11:28 pm 

It seems to me that the word 'think' first emerged in connection with the individual mind, a distinct pattern we so marked and agreed on with. With such term and the general connectedness and change we observe in the universe similar to what we sense in the brain, we are trying to expand the extension of the word 'think' to include the universe.

If thought is an emergent event in the universe, it seems we cannot make that event a greater category than the entity it emerge from. If we would force such approach then we are faced with narrowing the word's comprehension to include more general and fundamental concepts, and with which we lose the uniqueness signified by the word and thus the term when we are referring to that of the individual thought.

Can we turn the table to thought? Can the emergent event in itself be like a universe from which it emerged from? Are there any laws or structure of the mind that can correspond to the laws or structure of the universe? Are we considering two different but connected scales of events that are self-similar? Can we notice further what make these events self-similar? Is there a basic unit for the mind that corresponds with the universe? How are their boundaries similar?

With this approach by following the hierarchical point of views (that is materially one can notice the universe as greater entity, while on non-material aspects the mind plus a mystery can be sensed as greater - but notice, the mind does not take the position alone, it shares it with a mystery, a unity like x=1/x, signaling a new order within a more fundamental former), it seems we can have another angle to the question 'can the universe "think"'.
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Athena on September 26th, 2014, 12:07 am 

Well now I have to know what a thought is? Is it possible to have thought without consciousness of it? My brain runs my body without me making a conscious effort. It even knows what to do better than I do. If I had to consciously run my body, I would be in big trouble! I don't think I could consciously run any part of my body, except maybe consume food like an amoeba.

Amoeba exhibit an awareness of their environment and if this is not thought what is it? Of course if it is thought, where is the thought happening? Is this different from a thinking universe?

http://link.springer.com/article/10.100 ... 922#page-1
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Don Juan on September 26th, 2014, 1:02 am 

It seems some elements are needed for thought: memory (or a way to represent) and a way to compare that memory within and without the body (and recursively to itself). Memory is a network of feedback loops (reaching a threshold of structure and number of modular sub-elements) as well as the means to compare, so these are already in loops in hierarchies working together as a unit. More than that we have to consider other levels of feedback loops relevant, that of growth & development and evolution.

As we may observe there is a form of memory more general, it seems, to that term of the word referring to organisms with nervous systems.

How do we define memory relevant to the universe and to organism with nervous systems? Is memory part of the self-similar structure of the universe and the individual observer? How memory is relevant to feedback loops at its fundamental level, for one thing, memory as an organization needs to be stable at least for a certain period of time, may give us some clues?

It seems memory is very relevant to the idea of distinctions. Memory seems to be a stable network of feedback loops accomplishing high level network of distinctions.

Thus somehow touching Dave's idea of the universe as network relevant to thinking?
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Don Juan on September 26th, 2014, 1:34 am 

Athena » September 26th, 2014, 6:07 am wrote:Well now I have to know what a thought is? Is it possible to have thought without consciousness of it? My brain runs my body without me making a conscious effort. It even knows what to do better than I do. If I had to consciously run my body, I would be in big trouble! I don't think I could consciously run any part of my body, except maybe consume food like an amoeba.

Amoeba exhibit an awareness of their environment and if this is not thought what is it? Of course if it is thought, where is the thought happening? Is this different from a thinking universe?

http://link.springer.com/article/10.100 ... 922#page-1


If we will add the dimensions of evolution and growth to our arguments regarding thought, then what is thought?
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby dlorde on September 26th, 2014, 8:27 am 

Philosophytalks » September 25th, 2014, 10:42 pm wrote:Some argues that thoughts are just neurological activity, however this seems implausible for I dont think you are able to reduce mental states to physical states.

Hmmm, the Argument From Incredulity. The thing is, mental states are physical states, mental activities are physical activities; we just describe them with respect to a specific functional context and from a particular viewpoint. There is also a vagueness to the concepts in use that doesn't help - the emotional mental states, for example, don't just involve the brain, but have a large contribution from physical body states.

Thought seems to be more than just neuronal activity, for if it was just neuronal activity it would be possible for people to completely read our thoughts and desires and everything that we consider us to be a thinking thing.

In principle yes; but you'd have to be able to measure the activity of the connections of every neuron in real time to achieve that; there are around 80 billion neurons and around 100 trillion connections between them. However, it is currently possible to measure the overall activity of small areas of the brain and make broad distinctions between some types of thoughts and others. For example, patients with locked-in syndrome (totally paralysed) have been able to communicate by imagining playing tennis for 'yes' and walking around their homes for 'no'. The differences in brain activity for these two mental tasks can be measured with fMRI scanning and are sufficiently clear that they can be used to communicate - a crude form of mind-reading. Similar techniques are being developed and refined to do more sophisticated 'mind reading'. Individuals are all slightly different, so such systems have to be trained for each person, producing a 'Rosetta Stone' of mappings between thoughts and brain activity, but progress is being made (when the US military want to enable soldiers in theatre to communicate directly mind-to-mind, there is no shortage of research funding).

This would seem to remove your above objection to thoughts being only neuronal activity.

When you look inside your mind (introspection), you do not experience the neuronal activity in the brain but instead you experience your thoughts, and this is what backs up my point. The mind seems to be more than the brain and thus you cannot reduce mental states to physical states, instead my view is that the immaterial juice (for want of a better word) use the physical universe as a medium to express themselves but are not part of the physical universe as such.

For some reason, there does seem to be great difficulty in mentally reconciling the objective viewpoint with subjective experience. But the feelings you have of thinking, experiencing, perceiving, etc., are what it is like to be a healthy active brain; I say be an active brain rather than have and active brain, to emphasise that it's not just something you have, it doesn't just think on your behalf, its activity is you (I'm simplifying a bit).

When you introspect, you don't experience the neuronal activity directly, because your conscious awareness emerges at a higher level of abstraction than individual neurons. To use Conway's Game of Life (introduced by Dave earlier in the thread) as a simple analogy, the individual cells of the grid (Dave called them 'preons') are analogous to neurons. They are static, they can't move at all. All they do is switch between two states, 'live' - black, and 'dead' - white, depending on how many of their neighbors are 'live'. Each time the grid is updated, some cells become live and some cells die. But what makes the system interesting is that over time coherent, consistent patterns of 'live' cells appear, and these patterns can move across the grid and they can interact with each other to form new patterns. These patterns can interact like switches - if you arrange enough of them together, you can make a programmable computer (Universal Turing Machine) out of such pattern switches:


You can make a self-contained pattern that reproduces itself (it takes 34 million cycles):


You can make a pattern that emulates the Game of Life itself:


When these patterns interact in their various ways, the individual grid cells are not relevant - they don't move, they just change state, live or dead; they're the substrate that enables the patterns to form. It's the patterns that are important. When these interactions are described in GoL, the cells are not mentioned, only the patterns and how they behave. In the same way, in your brain it is the patterns of activity that are key, the neurons and their activity make up the enabling substrate.
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby owleye on September 26th, 2014, 9:13 am 

dlorde » Fri Sep 26, 2014 6:27 am wrote:
Philosophytalks » September 25th, 2014, 10:42 pm wrote:Some argues that thoughts are just neurological activity, however this seems implausible for I dont think you are able to reduce mental states to physical states.

Hmmm, the Argument From Incredulity. The thing is, mental states are physical states, mental activities are physical activities; we just describe them with respect to a specific functional context and from a particular viewpoint. There is also a vagueness to the concepts in use that doesn't help - the emotional mental states, for example, don't just involve the brain, but have a large contribution from physical body states.

Philosophytalks wrote:Thought seems to be more than just neuronal activity, for if it was just neuronal activity it would be possible for people to completely read our thoughts and desires and everything that we consider us to be a thinking thing.


I liked your post, dlorde, and particularly how you began it. I suspect all the support you gave it will wash right over him or her, as it will not be seen as addressing his or her ontological orientation. Questions dealing with what exists and the nature of that existence are difficult to address merely from evidence in support or to the contrary. My advice to those who think of the issue surrounding the existence of mind and the body in a dualist fashion is to address the problems their position creates for them and not try to defend one's position by criticizing monism. Though materialist monists have a bit of an edge in this, in my view, in that the problems they face seem to be addressable within the context they've placed it, it's not yet a done deal. But, in my view, it is nowhere near the problem faced by dualists whose task it is to discover how the mind and body interact, since it appears that they do. It may be that in the end of their investigations dualists won't ally themselves with material monism, but perhaps they might be attracted to an immaterial monism. No matter, in the few posts that I've read of Philosophytalks, he's not all that up on the progress of science. And for that reason, my guess is that he or she will not have an easy time here, especially if he relies by arguments based on ignorance.

And, by the way, Philosophytalks, if you're reading this, there is evidence that we can in fact read some thoughts prior to their being expressed, even if expressed silently. (Google it, if you don't believe me.) And, though I might not like this, and would advocate against its use, generally, I think you should take a closer look at the possibility that you may be taking an ostrich-like position relative to the advances of science.
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby dlorde on September 26th, 2014, 9:21 am 

Paradox » September 25th, 2014, 10:45 pm wrote:I would have argued with you that neurons are responsible for thought, until I read this:
...
The full blog:
http://www.israelnationalnews.com/Blogs/Message.aspx/5343#.VCSMML6d5SV


I hate to say it, but that looks like a case of the Dunning-Kruger effect (i.e. little does he know how little he knows). It is the very subconscious he mentions in the latter part of the blog that is the source of the thoughts that suddenly "pop into your head". They're not coming from outside, they're coming from within. This isn't just guesswork, it's been demonstrated many times in the lab. Stuff you are consciously aware of is a tiny fraction of the processing activity going on in your brain. Most of the time, you just become aware of what that larger, 'hidden', part has done or is doing.

Sophisticated consciousness is a recent evolutionary development, built on top of a fast, responsive, highly parallel processing system that was much improved by the extra flexibility consciousness provided. But deliberative conscious thought is sequential, painfully slow and resource intensive (if you're walking along with someone and ask them to do a difficult mental calculation, they may even stop walking to focus on it).

Conscious thought depends on the speed and power of the underlying support system to function effectively; this support system gives us intuition, hunches, recognition, and expertise; but although it's fast, it's often wrong - it's why you can sometimes read faster than you can comprehend the text; why you only realise you've said the wrong thing after it's been said; why you find yourself looking in a cupboard, or in the fridge, or pacing around the room, without having consciously decided to do so; why you're absent-minded; why you can speak quickly and coherently without significant effort until it fails to supply you the name of the person in that movie, then you struggle; and it's terrible at probabilities... For a wonderfully entertaining exposition of this, I strongly recommend Daniel Kahneman's 'Thinking, Fast and Slow'.

It's fair to say that you're not consciously aware of most of what makes you who you are. Consciousness is a bit like the CEO of a large company - he/she/it makes long term plans and important or tricky decisions, is updated with what he/she/it needs to know, relies on a team of back-room researchers and egg-heads to provide timely information to act on, and he/she/it thinks it's all his/her/its own work.
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Marshall on September 26th, 2014, 9:51 am 

Thanks Owleye and DLorde, I'm reading your discussion with interest though don't have much of anything substantive to add. My wife and I are retired and live near UCB campus and when I go out for exercise walk on the hill I've occasionally met and struck up casual conversation with grad students or postdocs who work at a thought-reading MRI research center in the basement of one of the buildings. I don't know much of the technical vocabulary.
They can watch brain activity in real time (magnetic resonance imaging, MRI) and can tell somewhat of what the subject is thinking by which centers are "lighting up" in the realtime brainscan movie. They can talk to the person meanwhile, as I understand it.
If you know of an online introductory account of this type of research and want to post a link, or if there is some online open access journal, that would be nice. I don't currently have library access to journals that are behind the paywall.
Fascinating stuff.

I'll quote some of the nice observations in preceding post, just to highlight them and help me remember them:
DLorde wrote:Conscious thought depends on the speed and power of the underlying support system to function effectively; this support system gives us intuition, hunches, recognition, and expertise.. it's ...why you only realise you've said the wrong thing after it's been said; why you find yourself looking in a cupboard, or in the fridge, or pacing around the room, without having consciously decided to do so; why you're absent-minded; why you can speak quickly and coherently without significant effort until it fails to supply you the name of the person in that movie, ..., I strongly recommend Daniel Kahneman's 'Thinking, Fast and Slow'.

It's fair to say that you're not consciously aware of most of what makes you who you are. Consciousness is a bit like the CEO of a large company - he/she/it makes long term plans and important or tricky decisions, is updated with what he/she/it needs to know, relies on a team of back-room researchers and egg-heads to provide timely information to act on, and he/she/it thinks it's all his/her/its own work...

:^D this sounds right. It strikes a chord.
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby dlorde on September 26th, 2014, 10:09 am 

owleye » September 26th, 2014, 2:13 pm wrote:I liked your post, dlorde, and particularly how you began it. I suspect all the support you gave it will wash right over him or her, as it will not be seen as addressing his or her ontological orientation.

Thanks owleye, it good to know our communication isn't an entirely lost cause ;) and yes, I think you may be right about it washing over him/her, but it's worth putting the arguments out there for others (possible lurkers). Who knows, if washed over enough times, perhaps the ontological blockage may be eroded or even washed away.
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby dlorde on September 26th, 2014, 10:35 am 

Marshall » September 26th, 2014, 2:51 pm wrote:...They can watch brain activity in real time (magnetic resonance imaging, MRI) and can tell somewhat of what the subject is thinking by which centers are "lighting up" in the realtime brainscan movie. They can talk to the person meanwhile, as I understand it.
If you know of an online introductory account of this type of research and want to post a link, or if there is some online open access journal, that would be nice.

I feel like I'm plugging this, but the best introductory account of correlating brain activity with conscious and unconscious thought that I've found is Stanislaus Dehaene's book 'Consciousness and the Brain'. It's very readable and non-technical, and Dehaene is one of the leading researchers in the field - director of the Cognitive Neuroimaging Unit in Saclay, France, and professor of experimental cognitive psychology at the College de France.

A good source for browsing publications on consciousness research is the Association for the Scientific Study of Consciousness (ASSC) publication list. Some articles are more technical than others...

Scholarpedia has some interesting entries on consciousness in general.

Searching the Caltech authors library for 'neuroscience and consciousness' turns up some interesting papers (you have to wade through the uninteresting stuff to find them). Koch, in particular, is worth looking for.
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Marshall on September 26th, 2014, 11:15 am 

Thanks DLorde, I tried the Scholarpedia link and read up on Chinese Room Argument, and Vegetative State.
The V.S. article was quite interesting and about a lot of other states besides that one. The C.R.A. article was interesting too, more on a philosophical level. Sampled several others on the list of articles.
I'd like to copy this post somewhere as a starter for a "pinned" bibliography or resources thread on this kind of research, so I and others who might be interested can easily find it later.

Let me know if you wish me not to copy it or if you wish to make changes/additions any time in future.
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby dlorde on September 26th, 2014, 11:33 am 

Marshall » September 26th, 2014, 4:15 pm wrote:Let me know if you wish me not to copy it or if you wish to make changes/additions any time in future.

You're welcome to do whatever you like with it :)

I can't see why I'd want to change it, and if I want to add anything, I can make another post.
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Marshall on September 26th, 2014, 4:07 pm 

Thanks, I set up the potential biblio sticky thread in Behavioral Sci forum. I suspected there would be no need to emend, just wanted to express willingness since using your material.
I don't know if there is enough interest for a "Consciousness and the brain" biblio thread to take off, however please add to it if you come across more stuff. I found a YouTube lecture by Dehaene and added it to the sticky thread
viewtopic.php?f=124&p=268454#p268454
impressive guy.
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Philosophytalks on September 26th, 2014, 5:04 pm 

“Hmmm, the Argument From Incredulity. The thing is, mental states are physical states, mental activities are physical activities; we just describe them with respect to a specific functional context and from a particular viewpoint. There is also a vagueness to the concepts in use that doesn't help - the emotional mental states, for example, don't just involve the brain, but have a large contribution from physical body states” – Dlorde

Dlorde, This is not necessarily true. Youre arguing that mental states are physical states, however it isn’t certain that they are. It depends on the viewpoint that you are endorsing, and I am guessing that youre endorsing Identity Theory or the like. I can give you a couple of reasons why I think that you cannot reduce a mental state to a physical state like you are doing:

• A mental state, such as pain, has no spatial location. You cannot feasibly say that my experience of pain takes up space. You can argue that the neurons causing the pain are within a location, for they are in my hands for example, but the experience of pain itself does not take up any space. On this note, mental states cannot be reduced to physical states because to be a physical state you must take up space.
• Another reason is that mental states have qualia experience but physical states do not. For example, I know what it feels like to have the experience of pain. However, I do not know what it feels like for certain neurons to be fired from the neurons, through my spinal cord, to my brain and whatnot. Again this would show that mental states cannot be reduced to physical states because mental states have qualia experience whereas physical states do not.
• Finally, you can learn about your mental states through introspection, however you cannot learn about your physical states through introspection. I can know through introspection that I have the feeling of being angry or have the desire of wanting to reply to your comment, but I cannot know through introspection the neuronal activity which is occurring. Due to this, it would again seem that mental states cannot be reduced to physical states, and thus my argument would still be valid.

“In principle yes; but you'd have to be able to measure the activity of the connections of every neuron in real time to achieve that; there are around 80 billion neurons and around 100 trillion connections between them. However, it is currently possible to measure the overall activity of small areas of the brain and make broad distinctions between some types of thoughts and others. For example, patients with locked-in syndrome (totally paralysed) have been able to communicate by imagining playing tennis for 'yes' and walking around their homes for 'no'. The differences in brain activity for these two mental tasks can be measured with fMRI scanning and are sufficiently clear that they can be used to communicate - a crude form of mind-reading. Similar techniques are being developed and refined to do more sophisticated 'mind reading'. Individuals are all slightly different, so such systems have to be trained for each person, producing a 'Rosetta Stone' of mappings between thoughts and brain activity, but progress is being made (when the US military want to enable soldiers in theatre to communicate directly mind-to-mind, there is no shortage of research funding)” – Dlorde

There are also issues with your response here Dlorde. The physical states can be identified and so I do understand that you can broadly distinguish between different thoughts, but this doesn’t mean that physical states are the same as mental states. As I showed above how mental states do not seem to be the same as mental states, it doesn’t mean that mental states can influence physical states and vice versa. They are able to influence one another but would never be able to be the same. So when you are “mind-reading”, you are distinguishing between the mental states, but you will not be able to actually see or read the actual thought that the person is having. The only way to do this would be to find a way to read mental states and as of yet we haven’t got a way of doing this.

“For some reason, there does seem to be great difficulty in mentally reconciling the objective viewpoint with subjective experience. But the feelings you have of thinking, experiencing, perceiving, etc., are what it is like to be a healthy active brain; I say be an active brain rather than have and active brain, to emphasise that it's not just something you have, it doesn't just think on your behalf, its activity is you (I'm simplifying a bit)” – Dlorde

Let me give you an insight into another viewpoint of this: The subject experience occurs due to the mind. Now the reason why we have issues with reconciling the physical states and the mental states is because the mind is a different thing, but instead it just uses the brain as a medium by which it can express itself.

Let me give an example to highlight what im saying:
Imagine that there was a man (the mind) on a computer (the body) completing various tasks (the expression of the mind). Now in this view, it would highlight how the mind is using the body as a medium by which it can express itself – The reason that we see our thoughts etc and not neuronal activity is because the mind is using the brain to express itself, so when we look into ourselves we don’t see the neuronal activity (because that isn’t part of us, we just use it to express ourselves) we see our mind.

Now, an identity theorist would then complain about how deterioration of the brain seems to show the deterioration of the mind. If we go back to my analogy of the man and the computer, I can show how this objection can be undermined:

The man is on the computer completing various tasks. Now, a virus has got onto the computer (the deterioration process). The man is now unable to carry out specific tasks because the computer is disfunctioning.

On this analogy, the mind is unable to express its true self when the brain deteriorates because the brain is the medium by which the mind can express itself. If the brain deteriorates, it Is not the mind that is deteriorating but instead its ability to express itself because the medium by which it is expressing itself is dying. The mind remains intact but the brain does not.

p.s. Owleye, just because science doesn’t agree with it instantly does not mean that I am incorrect. The very nature of science means that even if supernatural things did exist, it would never actually be able to find it out because science requires pure evidence, not just theoretically based things. I could quite in fact be 100% right, but science would never be able to prove it unless it started focusing on immaterial things rather than just material things. Materialism itself encounters many problems, like for example in the Big Bang, matter was created and fused to make everything else (according to scientists). Now, I don’t want to bring in other arguments like the argument from contingency or the first cause argument etc but quite frankly something must have created matter, and to create matter means the thing creating the matter cannot be material itself. If you think about the reasoning, my view doesn’t seem as implausible as it may sound. Fair enough science cannot as of yet prove my point, but that does not mean that it is incorrect.
Materialism and the like are unreliable. The laws of physics rely on the observations that we have made of the universe, but who actually says that these laws work for the entire universe when we haven’t even observed the entire universe? Whatever law holds for the past and the present may not hold for the future. The arguments given for materialism rely on observations of the small parts of the universe that we have analysed and rely on inductive arguments based on these observations. Therefore materialism isn’t as strong as you seem to suggest because you rely on the nature of scientific observation and inductive reasoning.

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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Paradox on September 26th, 2014, 5:14 pm 

PhilosophyTalks is 17 BTW. I just thought I would mention that because when I was 17 I could not write even close to that. He got a Like from me on that basis whether right or wrong in opinion.

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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Braininvat on September 26th, 2014, 5:50 pm 

Cartesian dualism seems to never grow completely out of fashion, often casting its magical spell on the young. The central problem, PT, is this: if mind is nonphysical and yet interacts with a physical brain, what is the medium of interaction? Think this over. At least try to recognize that the burden of argument lies with he who departs from monism.
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Paradox on September 26th, 2014, 5:53 pm 

DLord wrote~

Thanks owleye, it good to know our communication isn't an entirely lost cause ;) and yes, I think you may be right about it washing over him/her,


I think I’m going to cry... Isn’t it nice when people get along!

Regards

Paradox~
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Dave_Oblad on September 26th, 2014, 6:02 pm 

Hi all,

That is pretty good for 17. It is true, PT is a bit green still, but going to college soon and taking philosophy..

Far more articulate than I was at his age.

Anyway, I so want to keep in the middle of this, especially that DLorde is making some very good commentary.. Neuro is also another expert I was hoping would get involved.

But, my Boss just bumped (shortened) my deadline by two weeks, as he sold a product that I am still designing. So I will only get minimal time here and be working 16 hour per day to make my new deadline.

Sorry, this subject is awesome.. and I so wanted to be in the middle of it. I'll try to juggle when I can.

My next supposition involved the concept that an alternate form of life might exist at super small scales, way below Quark scales. Almost a biological form of life, but mathematical by nature. That in the same fashion Macro Life evolved here using Chemistry, that sub-atomic life might evolve using Math. Then, given evolution, there could be a whole realm below the scales we can probe that might be rich with a very odd form of life. Then.. could these evolve into a conscious Entity, as we might become a Gestalt Entity someday ourselves.

Back later tonight.. I hope..lol.

Best wishes,
Dave :^)
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby dlorde on September 26th, 2014, 7:26 pm 

Marshall » September 26th, 2014, 9:07 pm wrote:I found a YouTube lecture by Dehaene and added it to the sticky thread
http://philosophychatforum.com/viewtopi ... 54#p268454
impressive guy.

Thanks for that, I hadn't seen it. Fascinating...
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby DragonFly on September 26th, 2014, 10:23 pm 

Braininvat » September 26th, 2014, 5:50 pm wrote:Cartesian dualism seems to never grow completely out of fashion, often casting its magical spell on the young. The central problem, PT, is this: if mind is nonphysical and yet interacts with a physical brain, what is the medium of interaction? Think this over. At least try to recognize that the burden of argument lies with he who departs from monism.


If the 'nonphysical' doesn't talk the talk and walk the walk of the physical then it coudn't have an interaction with it, so….
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby owleye on September 26th, 2014, 11:45 pm 

Philosophytalks » Fri Sep 26, 2014 3:04 pm wrote:p.s. Owleye, just because science doesn’t agree with it instantly does not mean that I am incorrect.


Strawman. I don't believe you will find evidence that I said you were incorrect. Notwithstanding this, I don't think what you say is particularly convincing, even if I said something like that. In my view, philosophy isn't about answers. If you want answers, I suggest looking to science. From my limited reading, you have adopted a dualist position that you think is the right one. I further offered that the issues of dualism are far more difficult than that of monism, and advised that those who have positions regarding what exists and the nature of their existence should be interrogating their own positions, rather than use opposing views to bolster their own. Ontological positions are commitments that one chooses and if they are serious about it, they should be investigating its flaws. If you are committing yourself to a dualist ontology, your task is to work out any issues that such an ontology presents you with. You need to find a solution to the problem of interaction between the two forms of existence. To the extent you can do this, you will find a willing audience among philosophers, though of course, you will also find those who will criticize what you have to say. If you aren't in the least interested in these problems but instead merely want to tell us what you believe in, well, you're not going to find a willing audience.

Philsophytalk wrote:The very nature of science means that even if supernatural things did exist, it would never actually be able to find it out because science requires pure evidence, not just theoretically based things.
There's something to what you say, of course, and believers in the supernatural won't be persuaded by anything science has to say. And, of course, arguments that are often attributed to believers more or less begin with this premise. Because science doesn't cover what I believe, I'm free to believe it. That's the argument you are presenting to us. Not really a very good reason for believing something and if that's all you've got, I see no reason to listen to you.

I should remind you that this is a philosophy forum, not a platform in which someone's beliefs have any particular significance.
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Re: Can the universe think? (split from #1 truth thread)

Postby Hendrick Laursen on September 27th, 2014, 2:43 am 

Braininvat » September 26th, 2014, 4:50 pm wrote:Cartesian dualism seems to never grow completely out of fashion, often casting its magical spell on the young. The central problem, PT, is this: if mind is nonphysical and yet interacts with a physical brain, what is the medium of interaction? Think this over. At least try to recognize that the burden of argument lies with he who departs from monism.

https://philosophynow.org/issues/65/How_Are_The_Mind_And_Brain_Related
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