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Author Topic: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?  (Read 309541 times)

Offline cheryl j

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1125 on: 04/12/2013 19:11:27 »

Popper hismelf did realise the falsehood of materialism .



Funny, I don't recall him saying that in the articles you posted.
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1126 on: 04/12/2013 19:11:53 »
Why do you think science itself did come from the very womb of a particluar religion, in order to study nature and the universe , empirically?


I think both religion and science are attempts by an intelligent brain to answer "Why do things happen? Why are things the way they are?" But I don't believe religion was or is necessary for science, nor do I agree that any religion can take credit for scientific knowledge. I'm not sure what this has to do with the discussion.

That's just a materialistic belief assumption extension of the  materialist "all is matter , including the mind " mainstream false "scientific world view " : irrelevant .

The conflict between science and religion has been just an Eurocentric problem , not universal ,not in the absolute sense at least .

There is no conflict between my faith and proper science without materialism, and there can be none  :
They complete each other , they are necessary to each other , they are the both sides of the same coin.
« Last Edit: 04/12/2013 19:13:30 by DonQuichotte »
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1127 on: 04/12/2013 19:19:08 »
Folks :

Try to be civil : and i promise that it will be easy , a piece of cake , to demolish , so easy in fact that i cannot take any credit or glory for , to demolish your materialist mainstream  false  'scientific world view " sand castle ,in front of your own very lovely eyes :

a false materialist mainstream 'scientific world view " that has absolutely nothing to do with science proper , the latter i do love so much , you have no idea thus .

Which also means that i will be just trying to make you realise what science proper is or should be in fact , and what is no science = the materialist mainstream false 'scientific world view " : i am not and i will be not "evangelising " thus .

I see that some people here who have been conditionned ,brainwashed and indoctrinated by materialism for centuries now , to the point where they have been taking the false materialist conception of nature for granted and without question, as "the scientific world view " , i see that they will become hysteric in no time : very predictable indeed .

So, just get a grip ,and i will deliver .
« Last Edit: 04/12/2013 19:25:02 by DonQuichotte »
 

Offline cheryl j

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1128 on: 04/12/2013 19:21:03 »


What is not unfalsifiable , is not necessarily false , as materialism is .
Which does mean that science cannot be the ultimate authority or the ultimate source of knowledge : that's beyond both science's realm and jurisdiction .
Materialism has been going in fact beyond the scientific method and beyond science thus = beyond science's realm and jurisdiction ,by stating that "all is matter " .
Worse : materialism has been imposing that false unfalsifiable metaphysical theory of nature of his ,for so long now , as "the scientific  world view " = how about that ?


What "materialism " are you talking about , there is no such a thing. There is only the scientific method.
 

Offline cheryl j

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1129 on: 04/12/2013 19:26:07 »
Folks :

Try to be civil : and i promise that it will be easy , a piece of cake , to demolish , so easy in fact that i cannot take any credit or glory for , to demolish your materialist mainstream  false  'scientific world view " sand castle ,in front of your very eyes :

a false materialist mainstream 'scientific world view " that has absolutely nothing to do with science proper , the latter i do love so much , you have no idea thus .

I see that some people here who have been conditioned ,brainwashed and indoctrinated by materialism for centuries now , to the point whare they have been taking the false materialist conception of nature for granted and without question, as "the scientific world view " , i see that they will become hysteric in no time .

So, just get grip ,and i will deliver .

Great. I can hardly wait! I shall go make some popcorn.
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1130 on: 04/12/2013 19:38:18 »


What is not unfalsifiable , is not necessarily false , as materialism is .
Which does mean that science cannot be the ultimate authority or the ultimate source of knowledge : that's beyond both science's realm and jurisdiction .
Materialism has been going in fact beyond the scientific method and beyond science thus = beyond science's realm and jurisdiction ,by stating that "all is matter " .
Worse : materialism has been imposing that false unfalsifiable metaphysical theory of nature of his ,for so long now , as "the scientific  world view " = how about that ?


What "materialism " are you talking about


Oh, no : amazing : what is the meta-paradigm or the conception of nature that has been dominating in all sciences for that matter , since the 19th century at least , as to become the false mainstream "scientific world view " ? and hence , a lot of what you have been taking for granted as science , was no science = just materialist belief assumptions which have been just extensions of the materialist false conception of nature , materialist belief assumptions such as "the mind is in the brain, memory is stored in the brain, life or nature are mechanical ...." ...



Quote
there is no such a thing.


There is: what do you think i have been talking about all along ?  .
Are you gonna deny the fact that materialism has been imposed to all sciences ,as the 'scientific world view ",for so long now ,without question ? Be serious .

Quote
There is only the scientific method.

I wish there were .

Fact is : The materialist mainstream false "scientific world view " has been just the false materialist conception of nature , science proper has absolutely nothing to do with , and hence fact is also :

science has been deluded by materialism  into assuming  that "all is matter ,including the mind " = just a materialist false conception of nature ,no empirical fact .






 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1131 on: 04/12/2013 19:41:08 »
Folks :

Try to be civil : and i promise that it will be easy , a piece of cake , to demolish , so easy in fact that i cannot take any credit or glory for , to demolish your materialist mainstream  false  'scientific world view " sand castle ,in front of your very eyes :

a false materialist mainstream 'scientific world view " that has absolutely nothing to do with science proper , the latter i do love so much , you have no idea thus .

I see that some people here who have been conditioned ,brainwashed and indoctrinated by materialism for centuries now , to the point whare they have been taking the false materialist conception of nature for granted and without question, as "the scientific world view " , i see that they will become hysteric in no time .

So, just get grip ,and i will deliver .

Great. I can hardly wait! I shall go make some popcorn.

That's the fair play civil spirit , girl :

I will do the same , good idea indeed .

Bon appetit , and good luck .

This promises to turn out to be entertaining , educational, inspiring ....after all , as i have been hoping it would do .

Which also means that religions are unfalsifiable = unscientific , but not all necessarily false = they cannot all be proven to be true of course ,as the materialist secular religion can be proven to be false .

In short :

I will telling you about what science proper is , and what is it not ,that's all .

In other words :

You have to be mentally or psychologically prepared as to have to deal with the fact that you will have to throw a lots of your presumed 'scientific " knowledge out of the window, by breaking free from your own materialist indoctrinations brainwash or conditionning  .
« Last Edit: 04/12/2013 19:46:57 by DonQuichotte »
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1132 on: 04/12/2013 19:49:49 »

Popper hismelf did realise the falsehood of materialism .



Funny, I don't recall him saying that in the articles you posted.


Just wait and see , my pretty charming lady :
I will be looking for those specific quotes in my digital library .

Later , alligator .
 

Offline cheryl j

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1133 on: 04/12/2013 20:16:01 »

What "materialism " are you talking about


Oh, no : amazing : what is the meta-paradigm or the conception of nature that has been dominating in all sciences for that matter , since the 19th century at least , as to become the false mainstream "scientific world view " ? and hence , a lot of what you have been taking for granted as science , was no science = just materialist belief assumptions which have been just extensions of the materialist false conception of nature , materialist belief assumptions such as "the mind is in the brain, memory is stored in the brain, life or nature are mechanical ...." ...


Oh, that materialism - you mean your conspiracy theory involving scientists who chose to study some aspect of chemistry and physics instead of, say, elves.


Quote
There is: what do you think i have been talking about all along ?  .
Are you gonna deny the fact that materialism has been imposed to all sciences ,as the 'scientific world view ",for so long now ,without question ? Be serious .

Uh, yes actually I do deny it. Hope that clarifies things.
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1134 on: 04/12/2013 20:37:58 »

What "materialism " are you talking about


Oh, no : amazing : what is the meta-paradigm or the conception of nature that has been dominating in all sciences for that matter , since the 19th century at least , as to become the false mainstream "scientific world view " ? and hence , a lot of what you have been taking for granted as science , was no science = just materialist belief assumptions which have been just extensions of the materialist false conception of nature , materialist belief assumptions such as "the mind is in the brain, memory is stored in the brain, life or nature are mechanical ...." ...


Oh, that materialism - you mean your conspiracy theory involving scientists who chose to study some aspect of chemistry and physics instead of, say, elves.

Be serious , please :
That's no conspiracy :
Materialism is just an outdated 19th century false and superseded conception of nature ideology  that was based on Newton's  classical  physics  .
Physicists thought at that time that there was nothing left to discover regarding the laws of physics ,and that there remained only details to be filled in.

Quote
Quote
There is: what do you think i have been talking about all along ?  .
Are you gonna deny the fact that materialism has been imposed to all sciences ,as the 'scientific world view ",for so long now ,without question ? Be serious .

Uh, yes actually I do deny it. Hope that clarifies things.

How can you deny that ? Be serious .
« Last Edit: 04/12/2013 20:41:45 by DonQuichotte »
 

Offline dlorde

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1135 on: 04/12/2013 22:36:38 »
Are you gonna deny the fact that materialism has been imposed to all sciences ,as the 'scientific world view ",for so long now ,without question ? Be serious .
Uh, yes actually I do deny it. Hope that clarifies things.
How can you deny that ? Be serious .
If you've been involved with science or scientists for any length of time, you can see it's obviously not the case.
 
But there are always a few people with an agenda who'll throw accusations around, perhaps because their pet hypothesis has been ignored, rejected, or falsified - or perhaps for religious reasons.
 

Offline RD

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1136 on: 05/12/2013 00:07:21 »
How can you deny that ? Be serious .

Searching ... https://www.google.com/search?q=DonQuichotte+%22Be+serious%22+site:thenakedscientists.com , gives "about 60 results".

Someone seriously needs some new material.
« Last Edit: 05/12/2013 00:10:23 by RD »
 

Offline dlorde

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1137 on: 05/12/2013 09:45:27 »
Someone seriously needs some new material.
Never mind the casual expressions, he seriously needs material to provide some evidence or argument for his assertions.
 

Offline cheryl j

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1138 on: 05/12/2013 15:22:59 »


I think, perhaps, it would help to explore some examples to clarify what we're talking about. I would expect mammals to have some sense of self, and insects little or none (they can detect others and act accordingly, but this appears reflexive or 'hard-coded'). But what about, say, a frog? does a frog need to conceptualize? It shows little adaptability, problem-solving, or forward planning, so I would think not...

It's complicated too, somewhat, in that there often seems to be more than one way to skin a cat in nature. In the same way there are different engineering designs for flight in the wings of insects, birds, bats and gliding mammals, there may be different structures that accomplish learning, even consciousness or self awareness. Or perhaps the information will be useful in the opposite way, in showing what kinds of learned intelligent behavior are possible without consciousness.

 Below is an article about crows, and one about face recognition and learning in wasps.

Crows Are No Bird-Brains: Neurobiologists Investigate Neuronal Basis of Crows' Intelligence
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131128103835.htm

Insects Recognize Faces Using Processing Mechanism Similar to That of Humans
http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=insects-recognize-faces-using-processing-mechanism-similar-to-that-of-humans
 

Offline cheryl j

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1139 on: 05/12/2013 16:02:01 »
Why do you think science itself did come from the very womb of a particluar religion, in order to study nature and the universe , empirically?


I think both religion and science are attempts by an intelligent brain to answer "Why do things happen? Why are things the way they are?" But I don't believe religion was or is necessary for science, nor do I agree that any religion can take credit for scientific knowledge. I'm not sure what this has to do with the discussion.

That's just a materialistic belief assumption extension of the  materialist "all is matter , including the mind " mainstream false "scientific world view " : irrelevant .


The conflict between science and religion has been just an Eurocentric problem , not universal ,not in the absolute sense at least .

There is no conflict between my faith and proper science without materialism, and there can be none  :
They complete each other , they are necessary to each other , they are the both sides of the same coin.

There doesn't have to be a conflict between any religion and science. One question religion asks that science doesn't, is what  should we do? What's morally right? Some branches of ethical philosophy raise this question, but moral principles can't be derived from physical facts. Perhaps that is one reason Ethos does not see a conflict between his faith and science, although I don't wish to put words in his mouth.

But the "conflict" only seems to arise when people try to prove religious beliefs scientifically, substitute religious doctrine for empirical evidence, or try to derive moral beliefs from physical facts.

Your assertion that materialism is a degenerate form of Christianity has no basis logically or historically, and I don't see how any particular religion "gave birth to" any area of science, even if some early scientists were also theists, or had the time and literacy skills to pursue science because of their religious occupation. 
« Last Edit: 05/12/2013 17:07:01 by cheryl j »
 

Offline dlorde

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1140 on: 05/12/2013 16:48:05 »
It's complicated too, somewhat, in that there often seems to be more than one way to skin a cat in nature. In the same way there are different engineering designs for flight in the wings of insects, birds, bats and gliding mammals, there may be different structures that accomplish learning, even consciousness or self awareness. Or perhaps the information will be useful in the opposite way, in showing what kinds of learned intelligent behavior are possible without consciousness.

 Below is an article about crows, and one about face recognition and learning in wasps.

Crows Are No Bird-Brains: Neurobiologists Investigate Neuronal Basis of Crows' Intelligence
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131128103835.htm

Insects Recognize Faces Using Processing Mechanism Similar to That of Humans
http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=insects-recognize-faces-using-processing-mechanism-similar-to-that-of-humans
The independent development of intelligence and (perhaps) consciousness is a fascinating subject. Here's a (not terribly good) video of an octopus learning by example; showing self-motivated curiosity, focused attention, learning and understanding, and application of learned knowledge.

Makes me wonder whether, with fundamentally similar kinds of problems to solve, aliens (if or when we ever make contact) might be more familiar than often imagined...

A follow-up to the insect recognition feature has honey-bees able to recognise humans!
« Last Edit: 05/12/2013 16:52:02 by dlorde »
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1141 on: 05/12/2013 17:33:17 »
Why do you think science itself did come from the very womb of a particluar religion, in order to study nature and the universe , empirically?


I think both religion and science are attempts by an intelligent brain to answer "Why do things happen? Why are things the way they are?" But I don't believe religion was or is necessary for science, nor do I agree that any religion can take credit for scientific knowledge. I'm not sure what this has to do with the discussion.

That's just a materialistic belief assumption extension of the  materialist "all is matter , including the mind " mainstream false "scientific world view " : irrelevant .


The conflict between science and religion has been just an Eurocentric problem , not universal ,not in the absolute sense at least .

There is no conflict between my faith and proper science without materialism, and there can be none  :
They complete each other , they are necessary to each other , they are the both sides of the same coin.

There doesn't have to be a conflict between any religion and science. One question religion asks that science doesn't, is what is should we do? What's morally right? Some branches of ethical philosophy raise this question, but moral principles can't be derived from physical facts. Perhaps that is one reason Ethos does not see a conflict between his faith and science, although I don't wish to put words in his mouth.



Religion is not only about moral or ethical values ,religion is much more than just that , mine at least in this case that's all encompassing : material and spiritual : it tries to explain the universe ,how did it came into being , how it will end ....and the role of humanity in that all ...

Science tries also to explain the parts of reality it can deal with empirically and piecemeal , while religion is holistic and thus leaves room for human inquiry , reason , true science ...

Those early muslim pioneers behind the birth and practice of science used to consider science as a religious duty, a form of worship of God , while separating their faith from science in the process , in order to find out about the secrets and signs of God within and without empirically .

Since science has been materialistic , in the sense that science has been assuming that "all is matter,including the mind ", then there cannot  but be a serious conflict between religion and science: religion is incompatible in fact with materialistic science in the above mentioned sense  ,since the false materialist "all is matter ,including the mind " mainstream 'scientific world view " has been, per definition, excluding any notion or existence of the immaterial, and hence that of God , logically .
The immaterial that has been reduced to the material, thanks to materialism in science .

At the other hand  ,there should be in fact no conflict between the metaphysically neutral science proper and true religion , when science will be free from materialism or from any other false conception of nature .

But fact is , the conflict between science and religion has been just  an Eurocentric one , not universal, not in the absolute sense at least :

The medieval church used to consider Aristotle's physics , for example , as an act of faith , thanks to the works of Thomas Aquinas ,an act of faith that should not be challenged , that's why Bruno who raised the Copernican counter-arguments was burned at the stake , and Galileo was smart enough to recant 16 years later when he captured the attention of the terrible inquisition .....

Quote
But the "conflict" only seems to arise when people try to prove religious beliefs scientifically, or derive moral beliefs from physical facts.

Once again, since science has been materialistic , since the 19th century at least , there can be therefore only conflict between religion and the materialistic science .

Quote
Your assertion that materialism is a degenerate form of Christianity has no basis logically or historically, and I don't see how any particular religion "gave birth to" any area of science, even if some early scientists were also theists, or had the time and literacy skills to pursue science because of their religious occupation
.

Some do trace back the roots of materialism all the way back to Democritus 5 centuries BC when he used to say this famous line of his " Nothing exists but atoms, and the void " .
Some others trace back the origins of materialism to much older civilizations : materialism is in fact a primitive world view that 'resurrected " as a result of the medieval Eurocentric terrible religious wars , religious inquisitions, intolerance ....and saw its chance materialized in Newton's classical physics to establish its "scientific " claims .

But, Newton's physics have been fundamentally incorrect , and hence the materialism that was built on it is false as a result .

Since materialism reduces everything to just matter , it cannot but be a lower or a degenerate form of christianity .

P.S.: It is almost an undeniable fact that the scientific method did originate from the very epistemology of a particular holy book : see the arguments in that regard presented in the origin of science thread .
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1142 on: 05/12/2013 17:39:49 »
the mental is more fundamental than matter


How do you know this? Do you believe that before there were humans to think about the universe, nothing existed or could exist?


Ironically enough , the most physical science of them all , modern physics or quantum mechanics , have been superseding materialism , to the point where they can raise the issue of the fundamental form of causation of them all : that of the mental causal effect on matter :

See this fascinating summary on the subject :


The von Neumann/Wigner interpretation of quantum physics, supported now by the experiments of Schmidt and others, may bring to mind the idealism of Bishop Berkeley, who thought that ordinaryobjects, such as trees and furniture, did not exist unless observed.
But this interpretation does not deny that an external reality exists independent of anyone observing it.
Properties of quantum phenomena are divided into static and dynamic properties, with the former, such as mass and charge, having definite and constant values for any observation.
 It is the dynamic properties, those that do not have constant values— such as position, momentum, and direction of spin—that are thought to exist as
potentialities that become actualities only when observed.
But as quantum theorist Euan Squires points out, this raises a very strange question:
The assumption we are considering appears even more weird when we realize that throughout much of the universe, and indeed throughout all of it in early times, there were presumably no conscious observers. . . .
Even worse are the problems we meet if we accept the modern ideas on the early universe in which quantum decays (of the ‘vacuum,’ but this need not trouble us here) were necessary in order to obtain the conditions in which conscious observers could exist.

Who, or what, did the observations necessary to create the observers?
Squires enters the realm of theology with great trepidation and considers what seems to be the only possibility under this interpretation: that conscious observations can be made by minds outside of the physical universe.

This, of course, is one of the traditional roles of God, or of the gods.
Whether expressed in theological terms or not, the suggestion that conscious minds are in some way connected and that they might even be connected to a form of universal, collective consciousness appears to be a possible solution to the problem of quantum theory.
It is not easy to see what it might mean, as we understand so little about consciousness.
 That there are“ connections” of some sort between conscious minds and physical matter is surely implied by the fact that conscious decisions have effects on matter.

 Thus there are links between conscious minds that go through the medium of physical systems.

Whether there are others, that exploit the nonphysical and presumably nonlocalised nature of consciousness, it is not possible to say.
Some people might wish to mention here the “evidence” for telepathy and similar extra-sensory effects.

Professor Squires concludes his discussion on the role of consciousness in physics with this remark:
It is remarkable that such ideas should arise from a study of the behavior of the most elementary of systems.
 That such systems point to a world beyond themselves is a fact that will be loved by all who believe that there are truths of which we know little,
that there are mysteries seen only by mystics, and that there are phenomena inexplicable within our normal view of what is
possible.
 There is no harm in this—physics indeed points to the unknown.
 The emphasis, however, must be on the unknown,
on the mystery, on the truths dimly glimpsed, on things inexpressible except in the language of poetry, or religion, or
metaphor.


Chris Carter .
« Last Edit: 05/12/2013 17:57:49 by DonQuichotte »
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1143 on: 05/12/2013 18:00:17 »
Classical Physics :


CLASSICAL PHYSICS:

Classical physics is a set of theories of nature that originated with the work of Isaac Newton in the
seventeenth century, was advanced by many scientists through the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries,
and finally culminated in the relativity theories of Albert Einstein, the last great classical physicist.
Building on the earlier work of Galileo and Johannes Kepler, Newton developed a theory of gravity
and three simple laws of motion that accurately predicted the motions of the planets as well as that of
terrestrial objects here on Earth, such as cannonballs, falling apples, and the tides.
Newton assumed that all physical objects were composed of tiny versions of large visible objects,
which he described as “solid, massy, hard, impenetrable moveable particles.”2 These tiny objects were
assumed to interact by means of direct contact, much like billiard balls. The only exception was the
mysterious action at a distance called gravity: Newton’s theory of gravity proposed that every tiny
particle in the solar system attracted every other one with a force inversely proportional to the square
of the distance between them. This deeply troubled Newton, who referred to this action at a distance as
an “absurdity”; nevertheless, he formulated his theory of gravity as an equation and simply declined to
speculate on how it was mediated, famously writing “hypotheses non fingo” (“I make no
hypotheses”).
It was Einstein who finally proposed a mediating agent for gravity: a distortion in space and time
caused by the mass of objects, with more massive objects causing greater distortion. This contribution
made classical physics a local theory: there is no action at a distance. All influence is transmitted
locally along a force field, and no influence—including that of gravity—propagates faster than the
speed of light. If, for instance, the sun were to be suddenly destroyed, Earth would drift out of its orbit
about eight minutes later.
In classical physics, all interactions between particles are local and occur independent of anyone
observing them. Moreover, the interactions are assumed to be deterministic: that is, the future state of
the physical world is completely determined by the state at an earlier time. According to classical
physics, the complete history of the physical world was determined for all time at the origin of the
universe. The universe was now seen as a great machine. God may have created the machine and set it
running—according to Newton, the planets were originally hurled by the hand of God—but once
started, the solar system was kept going by its own momentum and operated as a self-regulating
machine in accordance with inviolable laws.
Classical physics had two ways of dealing with the problem of consciousness and free will. The
first, followed by Newton and René Descartes, was to assume that human consciousness and free will
lay outside the domain of physics. Descartes taught that animals were mindless automatons, but
humans had a soul and were thus the sole exceptions in an otherwise deterministic, mechanistic
universe. The second way of dealing with free will, popularized by the eighteenth-century philosophes
who were greatly inspired by Newton’s work, was to argue that classical physics was a complete
description of the entire world, including human beings, and that free will was therefore an illusion.
The ancient philosophy of materialism was now thought to have a scientific foundation. Scientists
and philosophers now had good reasons to believe that the physical aspects of reality were causally
closed: the physical could affect the mental via its affect on the brain, such as the experience of pain
after touching a flame, but the mental could not affect the physical. Pulling one’s hand away from the
flame was now seen by the materialists as the predetermined response of an automaton. Thoughts,
feelings, and intentions were now seen as causally redundant: it was now argued that consciousness
serves no purpose and that our intuitive feeling of free will is only an illusion.
These views became prevalent in the eighteenth century, during what became known as the
Enlightenment, which can be thought of as the ideological aftermath of the scientific revolution. Its
most striking feature was the rejection of dogma and tradition in favor of the rule of reason in human
affairs, and it was the precursor of modern secular humanism. Inspired by the dazzling success of the
new physics, prominent spokesmen such as Denis Diderot and Voltaire argued for a new worldview
based on an uncompromising mechanism and determinism that left no room for any intervention of
mind in nature, whether human or divine.
In the eighteenth century, the horrors of the religious wars, the witch hunts, and the Inquisition were
still fresh in peoples’ minds, and the new scientific worldview, spread by men such as Diderot and
Voltaire, can be seen partly as a reaction against the ecclesiastical domination over thought that the
Church held for centuries. As we have seen, Bruno was burned at the stake for his opinions, and
Galileo was persecuted for his but recanted. Yet Galileo’s insistence that only observation and
experimentation, not authority, were the arbiters of truth in science had launched a revolution in
thinking. When Newton’s Principia was published in 1687, it was not suppressed but instead reached a
wide audience. The Newtonian system predicted the orbits of the planets with astonishing accuracy
and even reduced comets from portents of disaster to phenomena whose appearance in the sky could
be predicted like clockwork. The universe was now viewed as a gigantic clockwork mechanism. The
so-called modern scientific worldview was thus born and has had enormous impact on philosophy for
the last three hundred years.
For a philosopher whose thinking is tied to classical physics, there are two possible ways to
understand the inability of the mental to influence the physical. The first is to consider thoughts,
feelings, and intentions as epiphenomena, that is, useless by-products that are somehow produced by
the brain, but in turn exert no causal influence on the brain. The second is to consider the mind as
identical to the brain, that is, thoughts and feelings are the same thing as the motion of tiny particles
inside the brain.
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1144 on: 05/12/2013 18:02:26 »
Quantum Mechanics:


Quantum mechanics was developed early in the twentieth century to explain the behavior of atoms.
The energy of an atom was found to change, not continuously, but by a discrete amount called a
quantum. “Quantum mechanics” is the term that includes both the experimental observations and the
quantum theory that explains them.
In the closing years of the nineteenth century, physics was thought to be nearly complete. All the
important discoveries had been made, many thought, and all that was left was to fill in some minor
details. One of these “details” was the hot-body problem concerning the colors of light given off by
hot bodies. Max Planck set about to solve it.
The problem was that classical physics gave the wrong answer: its predictions were wildly
inaccurate. Planck found that when he assumed, as an act of desperation, that energy could only be
released from an atom in discrete packets, his formula gave predictions that matched the data
perfectly. Quantum theory was born.
Classical physics assumed that a charged particle, such as an electron, would lose energy gradually
and continuously over time. Planck assumed that energy could only be radiated in discrete packets.
Each of these packets of energy would have an energy level equal to a tiny number (now called
Planck’s constant) times the frequency of the vibration of the particle. Energy at the atomic level
would be measured in quanta (the plural of “quantum”), with one quantum being the lowest energy
level possible, above zero.
It was found that an electron would vibrate for a while at a constant energy level without losing
energy to radiation. Then suddenly, unpredictably, randomly, it would jump to a lower energy level
and in the process radiate a photon of light (the energy of the photon given by Planck’s constant times
its frequency of vibration). An electron could also gain energy by such “quantum jumps.” A graph of
an electron’s energy level over time was now given by a stepped function, not a smooth curve.
It was later realized that quantum theory should apply to all objects, large and small. However, the
reason we don’t see children on swings suddenly change their energy level in quantum jumps is
because Planck’s constant is far too small. Quantum effects are just far too tiny for us to notice them
at the macroscopic level.
Quantum theory was rapidly developed in the decades to follow, with Einstein, Niels Bohr, Louis de
Broglie, Erwin Schrödinger, and many others making major contributions. Classical mechanics is now
seen as only an excellent approximation for the behavior of objects at the macroscopic level we
normally deal with. Quantum mechanics can account for everything that classical mechanics can
account for, and also for data that classical mechanics neither predicts nor explains. Modern physics is
quantum mechanics. It also has many practical applications, such as the transistor, the laser, and the
florescent light bulb. It has been estimated that one-third of our economy depends on devices that
operate on quantum mechanical principles. Trying to understand what quantum mechanics means,
however, brings us face-to-face with some of the most baffling mysteries ever confronted, and must
profoundly change our worldview.
Newtonian physics was based on the metaphysical assumptions of determinism, the assumption that
an observer did not affect a system being observed, and localism. But classical physics has been
superseded by quantum physics, as classical physics has clearly been shown to be false. This implies
that the mechanistic worldview based on it must also be false.
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1145 on: 05/12/2013 18:05:16 »

DETERMINISM AND THE ROLE OF THE OBSERVER:






Quantum mechanics replaces the deterministic universe described by classical physics with a
probabilistic universe. This is the idea that the behavior and various properties of subatomic systems
and particles cannot be predicted precisely, that only a range of probable values can be specified. If
you roll a series of marbles at a hill at less than a certain critical velocity, all the marbles will roll
back down, and if you roll the marbles at more than the critical velocity, all the marbles will make it
over the hill. In our classical macroscopic world, either they all get over or they all fall back. Things
are not so simple at the quantum level.*16
For instance, if subatomic particles such as electrons are fired at a potential barrier at a given
velocity, it may not be possible to say with certainty whether an individual electron will pass through
the barrier. Fire the electrons at a low enough velocity and most will be reflected, although a minority
will pass through; at a high enough velocity most will pass through; and at some intermediate velocity
about half will pass through and half will be reflected. But for any individual electron (out of a group
of apparently identical electrons), all we can specify is the probability that the electron will pass
through.
Another example of quantum randomness is radioactive decay. Say we have radioactive uranium
isotope A that decays into isotope B with a half-life of one hour. One hour later, half of the uranium
atoms will have decayed into isotope B. By all the known methods of physics, all of the uranium
isotope A atoms appeared to be identical, yet one hour later, half have decayed and half are
unchanged. The half-life of isotope A is highly predictable in a statistical sense, yet the precise time at
which any individual atom decays is completely unpredictable.
Probability enters here for a different reason than it does in the tossing of a coin, the throw of dice,
or a horse race: in these cases probability enters because of our lack of precise knowledge of the
original state of the system. But in quantum theory, even if we have complete knowledge of the
original state, the outcome would still be uncertain and only expressible as a probability.
(Philosophers refer to these two sources of uncertainty as subjective and objective probability.
Quantum mechanics suggests that in some situations probability has an objective status.)
Another surprising proposition was that subatomic particles do not have definite properties for
certain attributes, such as position, momentum, or direction of spin, until they are measured. It is not
simply that these properties are unknown until they are observed, instead, they do not exist in any
definite state until they are measured.
This conclusion is based, in part, on the famous “two-slit” experiment, in which electrons are fired
one at a time at a barrier with two slits. Measuring devices on a screen behind the barrier indicate the
electrons seem to behave as waves, going through both slits simultaneously, with patterns of
interference typical of wave phenomena: wave crests arriving simultaneously at the same place in
time will reinforce each other, but waves and troughs arriving simultaneously at the same place will
cancel each other (interference patterns result when two wave fronts meet, for instance, after dropping
two stones into a pond). These waves are only thought of as probability waves, or wave functions, as
they do not carry any energy, and so cannot be directly detected. Only individual electrons are
detected by the measuring device on the screen behind the barrier, but the distribution of numerous
electrons shows the interference patterns typical of waves. It is as though each unobserved electron
exists as a wave until it arrives at the screen to be detected, at which time its actual location (the place
at which the particle is actually observed on the screen) can only be predicted statistically according
to the interference pattern of its wave function.
If, however, a measuring device is placed at the slits, then each electron is observed to pass through
only one slit and no interference pattern in the distribution of electrons is observed. In other words,
electrons behave as waves when not observed, but as particles in a definite location when observed!*17
All quantum entities—electrons, protons, photons, and so on—display this wave-particle duality,
behaving as wave or particle depending on whether they are directly observed.
A variation of this experiment by physicists Bruce Rosenblum and Fred Kuttner3 makes this bizarre
point even more clearly. If a wave corresponding to a single atom encounters a semitransparent
reflecting surface (such as a thin film), it can be split into two equal parts, much as a light wave both
going through and reflecting from a windowpane. The two parts of the wave can then be trapped in
two boxes, as shown in figure 4.1.
Figure 4.1. The wave function at three successive times: t1, t2, and t3.
Since the wave was split equally, if you repeated this process many times, then each time you
looked into the boxes you would find a whole atom in box A about half the time and in box B about
half the time. But according to quantum theory, before you looked the atom was not in any particular
box. The position of the atom is thus an observer-created reality. Its position will also be the same for
all subsequent observers, so it is a reality that depends on an initial observation only.
You may be tempted to think that the atom really was in one box or the other before you looked, but
it can be demonstrated that before observation the atom as a wave was in a “superposition state,” a
state in which it was simultaneously in both box A and box B. Take a pair of boxes that have not been
looked into and cut narrow slits at one end, allowing the waves to simultaneously leak out and
impinge on a photographic film. At points where wave crests from box A and box B arrive together,
they reinforce each other to give a maximum amplitude of the wave function at that point—a
maximum of “waviness.” At some points higher or lower, crests from box A arrive simultaneously
with troughs from box B. The two waves are of opposite signs at these positions and therefore cancel
to give zero amplitude for the wave function at these points.
Since the amplitude of an atom’s wave function at a particular place determines the probability for
the atom to be found there when observed, the atom emerging from the box-pair is more likely to
appear on the film at places where the amplitude of the wave function is large, but can never appear
where it is zero. If we repeat this process with a large number of box-pairs and the same film, many
atoms land to cause darkening of the film near positions of wave function amplitude maximums, but
none appear at wave function minimums. The distribution of darker and lighter areas on the film
forms the interference pattern.
Figure 4.2. The box-pair experiment: (a) waves emanating from slits in the two boxes travel distances da and db and impinge
on a film at F; (b) the resulting pattern formed on the film from many box pairs.
The distribution of electrons on the film will show the interference patterns typical of two waves,
which overlap to cancel each other at some places. To form the interference pattern, the wave function
of each atom had to leak out of both boxes since each and every atom avoids appearing in regions of
the film where the waves from the two boxes cancel. Each and every atom therefore had to obey a
geometrical rule that depends on the relative position of both boxes. So, the argument goes, the atom
had to equally be in both boxes, as an extended wave. If instead of doing this interference experiment
you looked into the pair of boxes, you would have found a whole atom in a particular box, as a
particle. Before you looked, it was in both boxes; after you looked, it was only in one.
Rosenblum and Kuttner sum up the puzzle:
Quantum mechanics is the most battle-tested theory in science. Not a single violation of its
predictions has ever been demonstrated, no matter how preposterous the predictions might seem.
However, anyone concerned with what the theory means faces a philosophical enigma: the socalled
measurement problem, or the problem of observation … before you look we could have
proven—with an interference experiment—that each atom was a wave equally in both boxes.
After you look it was in a single box. It was thus your observation that created the reality of each
atom’s existence in a particular box. Before your observation only probability existed. But it was
not the probability that an actual object existed in a particular place (as in the classical shell
game)—it was just the probability of a future observation of such an object, which does not
include the assumption that the object existed there prior to its observation. This hard-to-accept
observer-created reality is the measurement problem in quantum mechanics.4
Up until the moment of measurement, certain properties of quantum phenomena, such as location,
momentum, and direction of spin, simply exist as a collection of probabilities, known as the wave
function, or state vector. The wave function can be thought of as the probability distribution of all
possible states, such as, for instance, the probability distribution of all possible locations for an
electron.*18
But this is not the probability that the electron is actually at certain locations, instead, it is the
probability that the electron will be found at certain locations. The electron does not have a definite
location until it is observed. Upon measurement, this collection of all possible locations “collapses” to
a single value—the location of the particle that is actually observed.
Physicist Nick Herbert expresses it this way:
The quantum physicist treats the atom as a wave of oscillating possibilities as long as it is not
observed. But whenever it is looked at, the atom stops vibrating and objectifies one of its many
possibilities. Whenever someone chooses to look at it, the atom ceases its fuzzy dance and seems
to “freeze” into a tiny object with definite attributes, only to dissolve once more into a quivering
pool of possibilities as soon as the observer withdraws his attention from it. The apparent
observer-induced change in an atom’s mode of existence is called the collapse of the wave
function.5
Measurements thus play a more positive role in quantum mechanics than in classical physics,
because here they are not merely observations of something already present but actually help produce
it. According to one interpretation of quantum mechanics popular among many theorists, it is the
existence of consciousness that introduces intrinsic probability into the quantum world.
This interpretation owes its origin to mathematician John von Neumann, one of the most important
intellectual figures of the twentieth century. In addition to his contributions to pure mathematics, von
Neumann also invented game theory, which models economic and social behavior as rational games,
and made fundamental contributions to the development of the early computers. In the 1930s, von
Neumann turned his restless mind to the task of expressing the newly developed theories of quantum
mechanics in rigorous mathematical form, and the result was his classic book The Mathematical
Foundations of Quantum Mechanics. In it he tackled the measurement problem head on and rejected
the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum theory, which was becoming the orthodox position among
physicists. Although it is somewhat vague, the central tenets of the Copenhagen interpretation seem to
be (1) that all we have access to are the results of observations, and so it is simply pointless to ask
questions about the quantum reality behind those observations, and (2) that although observation is
necessary for establishing the reality of quantum phenomena, no form of consciousness, human or
otherwise, is necessary for making an observation. Rather, an observer is anything that makes a record
of an event, and so it is at the level of macroscopic measuring instruments (such as Geiger counters)
that the actual values of quantum phenomena are randomly set from a range of statistical possibilities.
Von Neumann objected to the Copenhagen interpretation practice of dividing the world in two
parts: indefinite quantum entities on the one side, and measuring instruments that obey the laws of
classical mechanics on the other. He considered a measuring apparatus, a Geiger counter for example,
in a room isolated from the rest of the world but in contact with a quantum system, such as an atom
simultaneously in two boxes.
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1146 on: 05/12/2013 18:05:48 »
The Geiger counter is set to fire if the atom is found in one box, but to
remain unfired if it is found in the other. This Geiger counter is a physical instrument, hence subject
to the rules of quantum mechanics. Therefore, it should be expected to enter into a superposition state
along with the atom, a state in which it is simultaneously fired and unfired.
Should the Geiger counter be in contact with a device that records whether the counter has fired,
then logically, it too should enter a superposition state that records both situations as existing
simultaneously. Should an observer walk into the room and examine the recording device, this logic
can be continued up the “von Neumann chain” from the recording device, to photons, to the eyes and
brain of the observer, which are also physical instruments that we have no reason to suppose are
exempt from the rules of quantum mechanics. The only peculiar link in the von Neumann chain is the
process by which electrical signals in the brain of the observer become a conscious experience.
Von Neumann argued that the entire physical world is quantum mechanical, so the process that
collapses the wave functions into actual facts cannot be a physical process; instead, the intervention of
something from outside of physics is required. Something nonphysical, not subject to the laws of
quantum mechanics, must account for the collapse of the wave function: the only nonphysical entity in
the observation process that von Neumann could think of was the consciousness of the observer. He
reluctantly concluded that this outside entity had to be consciousness and that prior to observation,
even measuring instruments interacting with a quantum system must exist in an indefinite state.
Von Neumann extended the Copenhagen interpretation by requiring the measurement process to
take place in a mind. He was reluctantly driven to this conclusion by his relentless logic: the only
process in the von Neumann chain that is not merely the motion of molecules is the consciousness of
the observer. His arguments were developed more completely by his illustrious followers, most
notably Fritz London, Edmond Bauer, and Eugene Wigner. Wigner, who went on to win the Nobel
Prize in physics, wrote, “When the province of physical theory was extended to encompass
microscopic phenomena, through the creation of quantum mechanics, the concept of consciousness
came to the fore again; it was not possible to formulate the laws of quantum mechanics in a fully
consistent way without reference to the consciousness.”6
The box-pair experiment also bears on the role of consciousness and free will. After all, you can
choose to look in one of the boxes or to do an interference experiment, and you will get different
“realities,” one being particle-like, the other wavelike. But your choice of which experiment to do is
not determined, even statistically, by anything in the physical theory. Nothing in quantum mechanics
says you must choose one experiment rather than the other. If you deny that consciousness collapses
the wave function, then this means atoms prior to observation existed as either particle or wave.
Somehow you chose to only look in those boxes that contained particle atoms and you chose to only
do an interference experiment with wave-form atoms. This would also deny free will, because then
your illusion of choice is determined by a conspiracy of the physical universe with the state of your
brain and your perceived choice. This replaces the deterministic universe with one that is
deterministic and conspiratorial.
This is how von Neumann, Wigner, and others brought mind back into nature and made a strong
case against the causal closure of the physical. As we will see, the case gets even stronger.
At this point, it should be stressed that this is only one interpretation of the facts of quantum
mechanics: in addition to the Copenhagen interpretation, there are several other speculations about
what is really happening when quantum possibilities settle down into one actuality. Most attempt to
rescue the determinism and observer independence of classical physics.
For instance, the hidden variable theory holds that the indeterminacy of quantum physics is an
illusion due to our ignorance: if we knew more about the system in question—that is, if we knew the
value of some “hidden variables”—then the indeterminacy would vanish. However, there are several
reasons why the general community of quantum physicists never held the hidden-variable theory in
high regard.
One reason, according to quantum physicist Euan Squires, is that the hidden variable theory is
“extremely complicated and messy. We know the answers from quantum theory and then we construct
a hidden-variable, deterministic theory specifically to give these answers. The resulting theory
appears contrived and unnatural.” Squires points out that the hidden variable theory never gained
widespread acceptance because “the elegance, simplicity and economy of quantum theory contrasted
sharply with the contrived nature of a hidden-variable theory which gave no new predictions in return
for its increased complexity; the whole hidden-variable enterprise was easily dismissed as arising
from a desire, in the minds of those too conservative to accept change, to return to the determinism of
classical physics.”7 Another reason the general community of quantum physicists consider the hidden
variable theory highly implausible is that it explains away indeterminacy by postulating the existence
of an ad hoc quantum force that, unlike any of the other four forces in nature, behaves in a manner
completely unaffected by distance.
The many worlds hypothesis is perhaps the strangest of all. It is the only one that denies the
existence of nonlocality, but it does so by postulating that all possible values of a measured property
exist simultaneously in coexisting universes. When a measurement is made, we are told, the universe
we are in splits into multiple universes, with one of the possible results in each of them. For instance,
if a measurement may yield two possible results, then at the instant of measurement the entire
universe splits in two, with each possible result realized in each universe. If a measurement may yield
a continuum of possible states—such as the position of an electron—then the instant such a
measurement occurs, it is proposed that the universe splits into an infinite number of universes! Since
it is further assumed that these parallel universes cannot interact with each other, this hypothesis is
completely untestable. Entities are being multiplied with incredible profusion. William of Occam
must be spinning in his grave.
In the opinion of many physicists, the last two interpretations are simply desperate, last-ditch
attempts to rescue the classical assumptions of determinism and observer independence that have been
abandoned by quantum mechanics. For instance, one interpretation salvages determinism from
classical physics by postulating hidden variables and the other by speculating that everything that can
happen does in fact happen in an infinite number of constantly splitting parallel universes, regardless
of the way things may appear to any particular version of our constantly splitting selves.
At any rate, these four interpretations are all consistent with the observed facts. They are attempts
to describe what reality is really like between observations, to account for the seemingly bizarre
behavior of matter predicted so accurately by the theory of quantum physics. They are not usually
considered to be scientific theories about the nature of reality, but rather metaphysical theories, as
within quantum mechanics there does not currently seem to be any obvious experiment that one could
perform in order to choose between them.*19
Physicist J. C. Polkinghorne sums up the metaphysical confusion many quantum theorists feel when
he writes:
It is a curious tale. All over the world measurements are continually being made on quantum
mechanical systems. The theory triumphantly predicts, within its probabilistic limits, what their
outcomes will be. It is all a great success. Yet we do not understand what is going on. Does the
fixity on a particular occasion set in as a purely mental act of knowledge? At a transition from
small to large physical systems? At the interface of matter and mind that we call consciousness?
In one of the many subsequent worlds into which the universe has divided itself?9 *20
Perhaps one interpretation is simpler or more logically consistent, or perhaps one of the
interpretations is more aesthetically pleasing than the others. These considerations may provide
philosophical reasons for preferring one over the others, but such reasons can hardly be considered
decisive. However, a fascinating set of experiments performed by physicist Helmut Schmidt and
others appears to show that conscious intent can affect the behavior of otherwise purely random
quantum phenomena. Could an experiment be designed to test the von Neumann interpretation?
Consciousness is central to the von Neumann interpretation of quantum mechanics. According to
this interpretation, some properties of quantum phenomena do not exist in any definite state except
through the intervention of a conscious mind, at which point the wave function of possibilities
collapses into a single state. The usual form of this interpretation allows the observer to collapse the
wave function to a unique outcome but not to have any effect on what outcome actually occurs: the
actual outcome is assumed to be randomly chosen by nature from the range of values provided by the
wave function. But the experiments of German physicist Helmut Schmidt and other physicists indicate
that the consciousness of the observer may not only collapse the wave function to a single outcome
but may also help specify what outcome occurs by shifting the odds in a desired direction.


Chris Carter .
 

Offline dlorde

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1147 on: 05/12/2013 18:45:23 »
You really haven't grasped the concept of 'discussion forum', have you?
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1148 on: 05/12/2013 18:58:41 »
You really haven't grasped the concept of 'discussion forum', have you?

You were asking for evidence , there you are : take a pick .
It would take too much time to talk about those subjects , so .
Don't be lazy , try to make time for those highly relevant excerpts ,especially those regarding the fundamentally incorrect superseded classical physics on whose assumptions all the outdated and superseded sand castles of modern materialism were  established or built  , and especially regarding how quantum mechanics have been superseding materialism as to deliver some highly fascinating insights in relation to the fundamental causal effect of the mind or consciousness on matter ..........
« Last Edit: 05/12/2013 19:00:37 by DonQuichotte »
 

Offline cheryl j

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1149 on: 05/12/2013 19:15:06 »
You really haven't grasped the concept of 'discussion forum', have you?

It would take too much time to talk about those subjects , so .
Don't be lazy , try to...

Do you ever listen yourself and hear what you are saying?
 

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1149 on: 05/12/2013 19:15:06 »

 

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