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Author Topic: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?  (Read 308101 times)

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1500 on: 30/12/2013 18:25:57 »

THE DREADED INTERACTION PROBLEM:




Critics of dualism often question how two fundamentally different properties such as mind and matter
could possibly interact (materialist philosopher William Lycan calls this the “dreaded” interaction
problem).45 How can something nonspatial, with no mass, location, or physical dimensions, possibly
influence spatially bound matter? As K. R. Rao writes,
The main problem with such dualism is the problem of interaction. How does unextended mind
interact with the extended body? Any kind of causal interaction between them, which is presumed
by most dualist theories, comes into conflict with the physical theory that the universe is a closed
system and that every physical event is linked with an antecedent physical event. This
assumption preempts any possibility that a mental act can cause a physical event.46
Of course, we know now that the universe is not a closed system and that the collapse of the wave
function—a physical event—is linked with an antecedent mental event. The objection Rao describes is
of course based on classical physics.
By asking “How does unextended mind interact with the extended body?” Rao is making the
implicit assumption that phenomena that exist as cause and effect must have something in common in
order to exist as cause and effect. So is this a logical necessity or is it rather an empirical truth, a fact
about nature? As philosopher and historian David Hume pointed out long ago, we form our idea of
causation from observations of constant correlation; and since anything in principle could correlate
with anything else, only observation can establish what causes what. Parapsychologist John Beloff
considers the issue logically:
If an event A never occurred without being preceded by some other event B, we would surely
want to say that the second event was a necessary condition or cause of the first event, whether or
not the two had anything else in common. As for such a principle being an empirical truth, how
could it be since there are here only two known independent substances, i.e. mind and matter, as
candidates on which to base a generalization? To argue that they cannot interact because they are
independent is to beg the question… . It says something about the desperation of those who want
to dismiss radical dualism that such phony arguments should repeatedly be invoked by highly
reputable philosophers who should know better.47 *32
Popper also rejects completely the idea that only like can act upon like, describing this as resting on
obsolete notions of physics. For an example of unlikes acting on one another, we have interaction
between the four known and very different forces, and between forces and physical bodies. Popper
considers the issue empirically:
In the present state of physics we are faced, not with a plurality of substances, but with a plurality
of different kinds of forces, and thus with a pluralism of different interacting explanatory
principles. Perhaps the clearest physical example against the thesis that only like things can act
upon each other is this: In modern physics, the action of bodies upon bodies is mediated by fields
—by gravitational and electrical fields. Thus like does not act upon like, but bodies act first upon
fields, which they modify, and then the modified field acts upon another body.48
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1501 on: 30/12/2013 18:29:15 »
THE OBJECTIONS OF DANIEL DENNETT:

Daniel Dennett’s book Consciousness Explained has a chapter titled “Why Dualism is Forlorn,” which
begins with the following words: “The idea of mind as distinct from the brain, composed not of
ordinary matter but of some other kind of stuff, is dualism, and it is deservedly in disrepute today… .
The prevailing wisdom, variously expressed and argued for is materialism: there is one sort of stuff,
namely matter—the physical stuff of physics, chemistry, and physiology—and the mind is somehow
nothing but a physical phenomenon. In short, the mind is the brain.”49
Dennett then asks, “What, then, is so wrong with dualism? Why is it in such disfavor?” His answer:
A fundamental principle of physics is that any change in the trajectory of a particle is an
acceleration requiring the expenditure of energy … this principle of conservation of energy … is
apparently violated by dualism. This confrontation between standard physics and dualism has
been endlessly discussed since Descartes’s own day, and is widely regarded as the inescapable
flaw in dualism.50
Shortly after this, he writes: “This fundamentally antiscientific stance of dualism is, to my mind, it
most disqualifying feature, and is the reason why in this book I adopt the apparently dogmatic rule
that dualism is to be avoided at all costs.”51
Commenting on the argument Dennett presents, Stapp writes,
The argument depends on identifying ‘standard physics’ with classical physics. The argument
collapses when one goes over to contemporary physics, in which trajectories of particles are
replaced by cloud-like structures, and in which conscious choices can influence physically
described activity without violating the conservation laws or any other laws of quantum
mechanics. Contemporary physical theory allows, and its orthodox von Neumann form entails, an
interactive dualism that is fully in accord with all the laws of physics.52 (emphasis in original)
Rosenblum and Kuttner also reject Dennett’s arguments:
Some theorists deny the possibility of duality by arguing that a signal from a non-material mind
could not carry energy and thus could not influence material brain cells. Because of this inability
of a mind to supply energy to influence the neurons of the brain, it is claimed that physics
demonstrates an inescapable flaw of dualism. However, no energy need be involved in
determining to which particular situation a wave function collapses. Thus the determination of
which of the physically possible conscious experiences becomes the actual experience is a
process that need not involve energy transfer. Quantum mechanics therefore allows an escape
from the supposed fatal flaw of dualism. It is a mistake to think that dualism can be ruled out on
the basis of physics.53
Finally, as Broad pointed out decades ago, at a time when quantum mechanics was still in its
infancy, even if all physical-to-physical causation involves transfer of energy, we have no reason to
think that such transfer would also be required in mental-to-physical or physical-to-mental
causation.54 This, of course, is completely consistent with the point made above by Rosenblum and
Kuttner.*33

CONCLUDING REMARKS:

Cognitive scientist Roger Sperry has proposed that consciousness is an emergent property of the brain.
A simple example of an emergent property is the fluidity of water, which is nothing like any property
of hydrogen and oxygen. Another example is the geometrical and optical properties of crystals,
properties that the molecules that compose them do not possess. Sperry proposes that consciousness
emerges from the configuration of the brain in the way that fluidity emerges from combining
hydrogen and oxygen.
This is different from the materialist production theory, according to which the brain produces
consciousness the way the liver produces bile. It is a temporal distinction: in the production theory,
brain states precede the conscious states they produce, but if conscious states are emergent properties
of brain states, then they occur simultaneously with them.
However, as philosopher of mind B. Alan Wallace notes,
A genuine emergent property of the cells of the brain is the brain’s semi-solid consistency, and
that is something that objective, physical science can well comprehend … but they do not
understand how the brain produces any state of consciousness. In other words, if mental
phenomena are in fact nothing more than emergent properties and functions of the brain, their
relation to the brain is fundamentally unlike every other emergent property and function found in
nature.55 (emphasis in original)
The von Neumann interpretation of reality leaves open the possibility that the mind is not an
emergent but rather an elemental property, that is, a basic constituent of the universe as elemental as
energy and force fields. This idea is seriously entertained by physicists such as Herbert, and in its
favor we should note that it would resolve the paradox that is raised by the von Neumann
interpretation: if consciousness depends on the physical world and if the value of many quantum
physical properties depends on consciousness, then how did the physical world ever bring about
consciousness in the first place? The solution to this puzzle is apparently what Jeans means when he
writes, “Mind no longer appears to be an accidental intruder into the realm of matter; we ought rather
hail it as the governor of the realm of matter.”56 *34
Quantum mechanics can thereby be considered as supporting an interactive dualism similar to that
of Descartes. Cartesian dualism holds that there are two kinds of entirely separate substances: mind
and matter. This theory fell into disrepute among many philosophers because classical physics
provided no mechanism by which mind could influence material substance.
The classical idea of substance—self-sufficient, unchanging, with definite location, motion, and
extension in space—has been replaced by the idea that physical reality is not made out of any material
substance, but rather out of events and possibilities for those events to occur. These possibilities, or
potentials, for events to occur have a wavelike structure and can interfere with each other. They are
not substance-like, that is, static or persisting in time. Rather than being concerned with “substances”
in the classical sense of the term, modern interactive dualism conceives of two differently described
aspects of reality: the psychical and the physical.
Stapp sums up how a modern interactive dualism based on quantum mechanics simplifies the
conceptual relationship between the two aspects of reality.
This solution is in line with Descartes’ idea of two “substances,” that can interact in our brains,
provided “substance” means merely a carrier of “essences.” The essence of the inhabitants of res
cogitans is “felt experience.” They are thoughts, ideas, and feelings: the realities that hang
together to form our streams of conscious experiences. But the essence of the inhabitants of res
extensa is not at all that sort of persisting stuff that classical physicists imagined the physical
world to be made of … their essential nature is that of “potentialities for the psychophysical
events to occur.” Those events occur at the interface between the psychologically described and
physically described aspects of nature. The causal connections between “potentialities for
psychologically described events to occur” and the actual occurrence of such events are easier to
comprehend and describe than causal connections between the mental and physical features of
classical physics. For, both sides of the quantum duality are conceptually more like “ideas” than
like “rocks.”

Chris Carter
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1502 on: 30/12/2013 18:35:39 »


Untill then , just continue having fun  and be satisfied with what you have been seeing from reality through the materialist key hole version of reality , while assuming that that's all what there is to reality : it's up to you indeed .



Since you have been liberated from materialism and can see beyond the key hole, it seems odd to me that you can't describe very much about the wonderful new vistas it has opened up for you, and that other liberated scientists can't seem to either, other than to whine on and on about how materialism is false. When does the immaterial party actually get started?

See above , dear materialist deluded person  with an X chromosome .
I really wish you a way beyond the materialist key hole version of reality new year ,sincerly .
All the best .
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1503 on: 30/12/2013 18:40:50 »


Untill then , just continue having fun  and be satisfied with what you have been seeing from reality through the materialist key hole version of reality , while assuming that that's all what there is to reality : it's up to you indeed .



Since you have been liberated from materialism and can see beyond the key hole, it seems odd to me that you can't describe very much about the wonderful new vistas it has opened up for you, and that other liberated scientists can't seem to either, other than to whine on and on about how materialism is false. When does the immaterial party actually get started?
Ohhh goodie, goodie, goodie, we're going to have a party. I think I'll come dressed in my birthday suit. That shouldn't bother anyone there because my everyday set of cloths isn't material either. Should make not difference, in fact, why even go to the party? Nobody's there, just waves of  immaterial nothingness. Only waves of the indescribable, non measureable, ghostly apparitional disconnected consciousness from the unconscious realm of Doctor Don.

It's the mind that sees , not the eyes or the brain , it's the mind that enjoys parties , not the body or brain . it's the mind that practices science , not the brain or body , ..........body and brain are just mediums vehicles ..........

Have fun , and happy healthy new year for your body brain and non-physical paradoxical confused mind  beyond materialism  , Ethos .
All the best .
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1504 on: 30/12/2013 18:51:28 »
I have been reading "The Alchemist " by Paulo Cohelho ,and i cannot but see myself , or my dualism, as some sort of a river  on which reflection Narcissus (materialism ) used to admire his "beautiful face " every morning .
The fresh water of that river was transformed into salty water,when Narcissus died  .
When the same river knew that Narcissus died , it could not but express its sadness .
When asked "Why are you weeping ? " ,the river replied : "I am weeping for Narcissus " .
Yes , It's no surprise that you weep for Narcissus , but you were the only one lucky enough to admire his "beauty " .
The stunned river said : was he beautiful ?
The river was told : you should know that of all creatures , because Narcissus used to admire his "beauty " on your reflection .
I did not notice his "beauty " , the river said , i never saw  him ,nor his face .

I am weeping  because i used to see my own beauty reflected in the very eyes of Narcissus .


"What a lovely story " the alchemist thought .
« Last Edit: 30/12/2013 19:09:56 by DonQuichotte »
 

Offline sastryemani

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1505 on: 30/12/2013 18:52:53 »
The mind is incapable of understanding consciousness. It is like explaining 4 and 5 dimensions to humans in a 2 dimension world.  That is why it is so difficult for human mind to fathom the depth. Human minds logic are made of thoughts. Consciousness is beyond that. But mind is the only link to understanding consciousness. How? By focusing or concentrating only on that, devoid of other distractions. Then only mind becomes one with the True Self (Consciousness). It is again like being in the 5 dimension and you are very capable of what is all about in lower dimensions ie... only after knowing what the True Self is, you are capable of what the wakeup world and dream world is all about. Even when you are aware of the True Self, it is hard to explain to people who do not have that understanding because language and logic is insufficient. It is like explaining extraterrestrials' how a banana taste like when they never tasted nor know what it is.
 
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1506 on: 30/12/2013 19:14:51 »
The mind is incapable of understanding consciousness. It is like explaining 4 and 5 dimensions to humans in a 2 dimension world.  That is why it is so difficult for human mind to fathom the depth. Human minds logic are made of thoughts. Consciousness is beyond that. But mind is the only link to understanding consciousness. How? By focusing or concentrating only on that, devoid of other distractions. Then only mind becomes one with the True Self (Consciousness). It is again like being in the 5 dimension and you are very capable of what is all about in lower dimensions ie... only after knowing what the True Self is, you are capable of what the wakeup world and dream world is all about. Even when you are aware of the True Self, it is hard to explain to people who do not have that understanding because language and logic is insufficient. It is like explaining extraterrestrials' how a banana taste like when they never tasted nor know what it is.
 

That's the main problem indeed : the mind or consciousness (the subject ) trying to understand the subject (itself ) .

The self is an illusion though ,you have to "die before  death " : you have to get rid of your illusory self , if you wanna reach the true enlightenment .
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1507 on: 30/12/2013 19:35:31 »
It's ok not to read my posts , i am not offended by that , although i have to admit i have been repeating almost the same things  over and over again : i have been having no choice but to do just that , and that's not been all i have been doing here either  .

I am still reading chunks of your posts when they're quoted by others - pressure of work makes it impossible to find all the best bits directly, so I'm taking advantage of the work others are doing in identifying them for me. I'm doubtless missing a few gems here and there as a result, but I'm sure they'll all come round again.

Indeed : in short :  I love materialists haha ,in the sense that they cannot but reflect the beauty of dualism ,as the story of Narcissus and the river on which reflection Narcissus used to see his beauty goes, in "The Alechemist " by Paulo Cohelho , i did mention here above .
When materialism will be dead , soon enough, i will be weeping for its death , simply because it has been reflecting  the beauty of my dualism  ,but i have never noticed or seen the supposed beauty of Narcissus = materialism .

Quote
Quote
All the best , and happy non-materialist and non-mechanical haha creative  new year by the way  to you and to all your beloved ones as well  .

And the same to you, and everyone else in this thread, with the "non-"s retained or removed as appropriate.

It's mutual indeed , all the best .Let's hope you will be progressing enough in your own creative work as to be able to see the undeniable falsehood of materialism and its mechanical world view (despite the fact that the mechanistic world view does have some elements of the truth: consciousness is the main anomaly that proves materialism to be false . ) : i know you have it in you to be capable of just the latter .
Who knows , Good luck .

Quote
Quote
P.S.: It would be interesting and fascinating to try to tell us about your creative work ,from time to time , so, we can have at least some sort of a glimpse of that .
Despite its undeniable falsehood ,the mechanistic view of the world has been delivering some interesting insights , ideas , breakthroughs , inspirations ....anyway .

I'll get it in front of you sooner by not stopping to describe it now. If you have access to a copy of Lewis Carroll's book Symbolic Logic, starting from book XIII, chapter III there are some rather nice logic problems which I am currently trying to get a machine to solve. It turns out that the first one can be solved using just four transformations and using only premisses 6, 9 and 10, so the puzzles themselves are being ripped apart by the mechanical analysis which I'm applying to them. The process is 100% mechanistic. The only thing that's a problem to explain in us is sentience, so you're wasting your time whenever you argue that reason, thought and language are anything more than mechanistic processes.

Sounds extremely fascinating indeed , i mean it , do please  tell us about that , whenever you can , thanks , appreciate indeed .
I am downloading Carroll's mentioned book, as we speak, so to speak .
Thanks for the tip , Mr.kafka .

All the best .
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1508 on: 30/12/2013 19:43:57 »
Yeah, right : just start insulting when you cannot do any better .
LOL!  that was no insult, "just hard talk = my own expression of tough love for you as a fellow human being" ;D

Like I said, such a short memory... remember this, and this?

Haha , not quite the same , not quite the same , Mr. what was the name again of that doctor companion of Sherlock Holmes ?
 

Offline Ethos_

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1509 on: 30/12/2013 20:03:23 »

Have fun , and happy healthy new year for your body brain and non-physical paradoxical confused mind  beyond materialism  , Ethos .
All the best .
Happy New Year to you as well Doc. Don..........Don't drink too much Vodka, it's effects are very destructive where consciousness is concerned.

And a very, very Happy New Year to all of my esteemed scientific compatriots:

delorde
Cheryl j
alancalverd
Grimbo

ENJOY!!!!
« Last Edit: 30/12/2013 20:14:48 by Ethos_ »
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1510 on: 30/12/2013 20:16:20 »

Have fun , and happy healthy new year for your body brain and non-physical paradoxical confused mind  beyond materialism  , Ethos .
All the best .
Happy New Year to you as well Doc. Don..........Don't drink too much Vodka, it's effects are very destructive where consciousness is concerned.

Thanks , the same to you paradoxical Ethos .
I am high on life , i have already kissed alcohol goodbye, relatively a long time ago .
Have fun, life is short ,and take care of your physical body brain and non-physical mind as well .
All the best .
 

Offline cheryl j

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1511 on: 30/12/2013 20:28:37 »
Okay, I'll bite. How does quantum mechanics explain the placebo effect? What happens?
 

Offline cheryl j

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1512 on: 30/12/2013 20:56:58 »
I do appreciate your excerpts, but at the same time find it frustrating that they all seem to cite examples in the vaguest of terms. Quantum mechanics or the immaterial explains X. How? In what way? What's the process? Show me the steps, the links. That was, it seemed to me, Cooper's problem with neuroscience - the links between neural correlates and mental activity were not tight enough for him. So why is it not a problem with quantum mechanics? Show me how  quantum mechanics generates dreams, thoughts, memories, hopes, love, jokes, emotions, imagination, dreams, qualia, etc.
 

Offline Ethos_

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1513 on: 30/12/2013 21:25:24 »
I do appreciate your excerpts, but at the same time find it frustrating that they all seem to cite examples in the vaguest of terms. Quantum mechanics or the immaterial explains X. How? In what way? What's the process? Show me the steps, the links. That was, it seemed to me, Cooper's problem with neuroscience - the links between neural correlates and mental activity were not tight enough for him. So why is it not a problem with quantum mechanics? Show me how  quantum mechanics generates dreams, thoughts, memories, hopes, love, jokes, emotions, imagination, dreams, qualia, etc.
Absolutely, this is what we're missing from you Doc. Don......  We need to see the linkage, step by step. Math is a magnificant vehicle to demonstrate abstract ideas, maybe you could detail your idea's using math? Take advantage of this venue, math can be abstract, and immaterial, right up your alley. Go for it my man, explain this vision of yours using math. The greatest scientific tool ever invented!!
« Last Edit: 30/12/2013 21:33:43 by Ethos_ »
 

Offline alancalverd

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1514 on: 31/12/2013 01:12:22 »
Quote
Show me how  quantum mechanics generates dreams, thoughts, memories, hopes, love, jokes, emotions, imagination, dreams, qualia, etc.

Hypothesis: (a) Quantum mechanics determines the shape of molecules and (b) hence the structure and function of our brains, (c) in which all these other things are made.

Discussion: (a) is well established, both by analysis and by synthesis. Brain anatomy and physiology can be analysed and altered with a fair degree of repeatability by chemistry, hence (b) is a consequence of (a).

Test: There have been no reports of dreams etc from individuals with no brain, but we can detect some or all of these activities in all humans and many species with analogous brains to ours, hence (c) is established within the bounds of experimental error.

QED.
 

Offline cheryl j

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1515 on: 31/12/2013 03:19:04 »
Quote
Show me how  quantum mechanics generates dreams, thoughts, memories, hopes, love, jokes, emotions, imagination, dreams, qualia, etc.

Hypothesis: (a) Quantum mechanics determines the shape of molecules and (b) hence the structure and function of our brains, (c) in which all these other things are made.
 

Something tells me that is not the direction he is headed.
 

Offline cheryl j

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1516 on: 31/12/2013 03:24:54 »



PHENOMENA QUANTUM MECHANICAL MODELS OF MIND CAN EXPLAIN:



Does a dualistic, non-materialistic model of mind-brain interaction account for the observed facts
better than a materialistic model? The answer is clearly yes: such a model can account for several
phenomena that remain utterly inexplicable by materialism.

How does the application of quantum mechanics make the model dualistic? Quantum mechanics has been studied in other biological systems, like photosynthesis, and none of the researchers connected it to mystical forces.
« Last Edit: 31/12/2013 03:26:32 by cheryl j »
 

Offline alancalverd

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1517 on: 31/12/2013 08:43:02 »
Something tells me that is not the direction he is headed.

To quote my old navigation instructor:"Start from where you are, and check the compass before you start the engine. Then you won't get lost before you take off."

Which suggests a definition of a philosopher as someone who enters an intellectual dogfight without a reality check.

And whilst I have the floor, DQ deployed this philosophical chaff a few posts ago
Quote
How can something nonspatial, with no mass, location, or physical dimensions, possibly
influence spatially bound matter?

Photons do it all the time, which is how you can read this, thanks to quantum mechanics.
« Last Edit: 31/12/2013 08:50:11 by alancalverd »
 

Offline alancalverd

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1518 on: 31/12/2013 08:56:31 »
And more crap:

Quote
Of course, we know now that the universe is not a closed system and that the collapse of the wave
function—a physical event—is linked with an antecedent mental event.

Drivel! The wave function is not a physical entity but an intellectual model of a physical property. This absurd statement suggests that Schrodinger's cat can be killed by my dog's thoughts before you open the box, which is exactly the opposite of Schrodinger's postulate: the model of observation collapsing a wave function only applies to a single observer. It predicts, but does not replicate, reality.
 

Offline Ethos_

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1519 on: 31/12/2013 18:13:42 »

 : you have to get rid of your illusory self , if you wanna reach the true enlightenment .
Unless you provide us with some evidence in support of this quote; "matter might turn out to be not made of matter, after all". You might truly consider taking your own advice.
« Last Edit: 31/12/2013 18:40:42 by Ethos_ »
 

Offline cheryl j

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1520 on: 31/12/2013 18:45:13 »
Below are  three links to articles about quantum consciousness.

The first one is written by Stapp himself in The Cambridge Handbook of Consciousness.  I believe Don will enjoy this article, and it even includes  several digs at materialism. I don’t think Don has already posted this, but I was away for a while. What’s interesting about this article is that in the attempt, I think, to steal the thunder of any critics, Stapp also points out some weaknesses of his theory, but I don’t feel he does a very good job at refuting these possible criticisms. (In fact, when I first read the article, I mistakenly thought it was written by someone else defending Stapp, and wondered if the author left out some key ideas that Stapp himself would have included!)

The second article is by Matthew Donald of Cambridge. He begins by saying “For many years, Henry Stapp and I have been working separately and independently on mind-centered interpretations of quantum theory. In this review, I discuss his work and contrast it with my own. There is much that we agree on, both in the broad problems we have addressed and in some of the specific details of our analyses of neural physics, but ultimately we disagree fundamentally in our views on mind, matter, and quantum mechanics.”

So it provides a slightly different view on the topic. He says “My theory is dualistic in the sense that there are physical laws and there are observers, but there are no mental computations without observable physical structure. My theory is epiphenomenalistic in the sense that a mind does not direct a pattern of observed physical events, rather it has to make sense of such a pattern as it unfolds. Ultimately, however, my theory should probably be considered as idealistic because, in its final form, the central structures in the theory are mental structures. Physics just supplies the probabilities by which those mental structures change. Mental structures give meaning to their realities by understanding themselves in terms of observable physical structures and observed physical events.”

Although his theory is in some respects even more abstract than Stapp’s, I find it a bit easier to swallow because he seems to avoid Stapp’s problematic conscious agency (or at least a completely independent, acausal one) Stapp's conscious agency is according to Donald basically another form of the homunculus, of which he is quite critical.

Donald raises another issue regarding the conservation of energy, which seems to be important and I would appreciate it if anyone else could comment on it. At the end of page six, Donald says: ”In Stapp (1993 §1.10), Stapp states that his theory 'makes consciousness causally effective, yet it is fully compatible with all known laws of physics, including the law of conservation of energy.' Stapp does not justify this statement. In general, energy is not conserved in individual quantum jumps. Average total energy may be conserved if the projections involved commute with the global Hamiltonian. Leaving aside the commutation question, however, this would require that 'causal effectiveness' produces the same averages as conventional quantum probabilities. In Stapp (1995),Stapp admits that, 'No attempt is made here to show that the quantum statistical laws will hold for the aspects of the brain’s internal dynamics controlled by conscious thoughts'."

I could easily be mistaken in my understanding of the statement above. But Stapp’s whole theory seems to rest on the idea of consciousness using the Zeno effect to stack the quantum mechanical deck, so to speak, to not simply collapse the wave, but to do it in a way that produces one result over another. If this violates the conservation of energy, doesn’t the theory fall apart?

The first two are long articles, but if you have nothing to do New Years Day, they might be worth a look.

The final article by Victor Stenger is shorter, and is a criticism of quantum consciousness in general, and also looks at the history of attempts to reinstate a holistic, aether-like conception of universe in which consciousness, mankind in particular, reigns supreme. He adheres tightly to the Copenhagen interpretation of Quantum mechanics, and says flat out “Nothing in quantum mechanics requires human involvement.”


http://www-physics.lbl.gov/~stapp/Cambridge.pdf

http://www.bss.phy.cam.ac.uk/~mjd1014/stapp.pdf

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/victor-stenger/the-myth-of-quantum-consc_b_788798.html
« Last Edit: 31/12/2013 19:55:09 by cheryl j »
 

Offline Ethos_

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1521 on: 31/12/2013 19:22:54 »


I could easily be mistaken in my understanding of the statement above. But Stapp’s whole theory seems to rest on the idea of consciousness using the Zeno effect to stack the quantum mechanical deck, so to speak, to not simply collapse the wave, but to do it in a way that produces one result over another. If this violates the conservation of energy, doesn’t the theory fall apart?

The first two are long articles, but if you have nothing to do New Years Day, they might be worth a look.

The final article by Victor Stenger is shorter, and is a criticism of quantum consciousness in general, and also looks at the history of attempts to reinstate a holistic, aether-like conception of universe in which consciousness, mankind in particular, reigns supreme. He adheres tightly to the Copenhagen interpretation of Quantum mechanics, and says flat out “Nothing in quantum mechanics requires human involvement.”


http://www-physics.lbl.gov/~stapp/Cambridge.pdf

http://www.bss.phy.cam.ac.uk/~mjd1014/stapp.pdf

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/victor-stenger/the-myth-of-quantum-consc_b_788798.html
Excellent work Cheryl j

"Nothing in quantum mechanics requires human involvement."

 

Offline alancalverd

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1522 on: 31/12/2013 20:31:41 »



"Nothing in quantum mechanics requires human involvement."


[/quote]

Thank goodness for that! Astronomical observation suggests that quantum mechanics has been going on for a lot longer than philosophy, or any other human vanity. But who cares about the obvious, when there's money to be made peddling mystical nonsense?
 

Offline Ethos_

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1523 on: 31/12/2013 20:59:45 »


Thank goodness for that! Astronomical observation suggests that quantum mechanics has been going on for a lot longer than philosophy,
Precisely alan,.....................according to material measurement approx. 13.7 billion years. Quantum mechanics has been doing rather well without any human intervention for at least 99.99999 percent of that period.
« Last Edit: 31/12/2013 21:01:54 by Ethos_ »
 

Offline Ethos_

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1524 on: 31/12/2013 22:02:03 »
This whole argument centers around the double slit experiment and the peculiar results that the Schoedinger's Cat paradox suggests. Those of the more mystical persuasion, like Doc. Don, see these quantum peculiarities as proving conscious intervention. But not so fast, let's ask one of the brightest minds to ever consider these questions and see what he says.




Richard Feynman had a different view concerning the double slit experiment and The Schoedinger's Cat paradox. He suggests that as the electron passed from it's origin it bumps into a photon. This collision not only reverses it's direction in space, it also reverses it's direction in time. Now moving backwards in time and space, the electron bumps into another photon returning it to the present observers time and space. But in the course of both these collisions, the observer now sees two separate electrons instead of the single one produced at the outset. The light the observer uses to view this experiment supplies the necessary photons.

Thus we have the best answer for the double slit experiment and the ultimate elimination of any conscious influence for being the cause.

As we speak, this is the best and most widely accepted argument for these phenomenon IMHO. If Doc. Don and his mystical colleagues want to believe in spooky, undefinable, irrational, immaterial, nonsensical, non scientific myths, they are free to do so. But I for one will challenge them to produce evidence of which they have been so far unsuccessful, and I predict they will continue to be unsuccessful far into the distant future.

Doc. Don... is the author of this thread and as such has the responsibility to provide evidence in support of his claims. He continues to misdirect us and challenge us to prove him wrong while offering us no proof of his own. I have resisted offering what I deem as accepted proof in opposition to his claims because I'm convinced he'll simply deny their validity even though they come from one of the greatest minds in physical science..

It is incumbent upon him as author of this thread to provide evidence in his own words and not just to copy and past. If he understands his theory, which I doubt,  he should explain it and prove it himself, without plagiarist.

« Last Edit: 31/12/2013 23:25:10 by Ethos_ »
 

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Re: What, on Earth, is The Human Consciousness?
« Reply #1524 on: 31/12/2013 22:02:03 »

 

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