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Author Topic: Major Bombshell : Manifesto For A Post-Materialistic Science :  (Read 187280 times)

Offline cheryl j

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May God bless the evolution -god that works in mysterious ways through its invisible mysterious magical hand : that of the unguided blind random highly unlikely ,step by step ,gradual , mathematically impossible , lottery of the so-called natural selection lol: the materialist version of design in nature : the most implausible one at that , that is , that violates Occam's razor through a billion of ways .



Natural Selection. And this.

15 Answers to Creationist Nonsense
http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/15-answers-to-creationist/
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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When the brain is damaged , that does not mean that consciousness gets altered , reduced or that it disappears : it is still there , it just gets blocked since its brain channels are damaged or disconnected .
We've been through all this before, but to save looking out the posts, how does your theory account for brain damage causing personality changes? Is personality not part of consciousness?

If not, what is?


(By the way : the idea that the brain and body have  a limiting capacity in relation to the scope of consciousness that can get through them is not new .It's as old as ancient civilizations and ancient wisdom , all the way back to/from  Egyptians, Babylonians , hinduism, buddhism , ...through ancient Greeks , passing by the Eurocentric 'enlightenment " philosophers such as Bergson and others .Even materialism itself is not new, not to mention its related atheism  .Ancient Greek atomists such as Democritus and others were materialists . It's just that modern materialism saw its chance of vindicating itself through classical determinist mechanical Newtonian physics upon which materialism was built  .But , QM did break the neck of materialism , later on, even though materialists persist in denying that fact as such , to mention just that one at least , by sweeping that under the carpet through inventing desperate theories and models that would help them get around that ...in vain.)

Well, once again, consciousness has to express itself through the brain channels , so to speak ,since brain and consciousness are inseparable , so, when certain areas of the brain are damaged , then certain aspects of consciousness seem to be reduced , altered or gone . The same goes for the loss of self-identity or personality ...through brain damage ...so.

The limiting capacity of the brain in relation to the scope of consciousness is a fact that can also explain, for example , why or how meditation , mindfulness can  do to us what they do , and can explain how one can reach higher levels of consciousness through one form or another of enlightenment , meditation, mindfulness, yoga, relaxation music  ... It's as if the brain has different levels of frequencies that can be activated through the mind by those stimuli .I don't know .

No wonder that all major religions, mysticism, ancient wisdom , emphasize the fact that if one wants to reach enlightenment , one must go through some form of discipline training , experiences , enlighetenment that can reduce the limiting capacity of the brain and body and that of the physical reality ,  in relation to the scope of consciousness and expand its flow, so to speak, through the brain and body channels : the higher the enlightenment , the higher the frequencies of the brain through which consciousness flows ,which results in higher levels of consciousness, i guess.

Tja, if the brain is damaged : that's a serious impairment that goes beyond the normal limiting capacity of the brain : consciousness gets blocked at that level , gets prevented from expressing itself , but , fact is , even in the case of serious brain damage through stroke , Alzheimer ...some people can partly or fully overcome all that through strong belief and action in their healing possibility : the power of belief-action  and expectations in healing our bodies, changing our biology or  neurophysiology , turning genes on or off and more cannot be under-estimated .

By the way , materialism denies the very existence of the self , self-identity or personality , subjective experiences ...

It's odd that you , as a materialist , would bring those "illusions " up lol

 

Offline DonQuichotte

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May God bless the evolution -god that works in mysterious ways through its invisible mysterious magical hand : that of the unguided blind random highly unlikely ,step by step ,gradual , mathematically impossible , lottery of the so-called natural selection lol: the materialist version of design in nature : the most implausible one at that , that is , that violates Occam's razor through a billion of ways .



Natural Selection. And this.

15 Answers to Creationist Nonsense
http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/15-answers-to-creationist/

Oh, please : don't play the creationist card .Don't use it as an exit strategy or tactic to get around the real issues at hand, which are  :

Materialism cannot account for an increasing amount of anomalies .
The latter that are the raw material thanks to which science can progress by questioning the scientific prevailing "wisdom " of the moment .

Clearly materialism cannot account for all those anomalies , so, science must find other alternatives to materialism that have more explanatory power : Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research has been doing just that , for example, not to mention the work of  non-materialist scientists on the subject .

Instead of questioning materialism itself, you just try to refute its opponents : "refuting " the latter won't make those anomalies go away .

All materialist physiological and psychological "explanations " of those anomalies have been in fact refuted .

P.S.: You make it ,implicitly or explicitly ,sound as if materialism or materialists are the real science or the real scientists , the only valid science or valid scientists :

Don't forget that naturalism or naturalist methodology are no exclusive synonymous of materialism : there is also what can be called theistic naturalism that was even the heritage of modern science : Newton, Kepler , and many other stars of science were believers ,and that  did not prevent them from excelling in science .

In fact , science is all about methodology and there is nothing intrinsic in science that can prevent it from studying all those anomalies beyond the scope of materialism ,simply because naturalistic science does neither require materialism nor is it condemned to remain confined within its dogmatic belief system .

Science is no synonymous of materialism = material processes alone cannot account for all those anomalies .

Better still : the subjective is inseparable from the objective : there is no such a thing as the independent -observer : consciousness plays a central role in shaping the physical reality ,and can even change the objective by inserting in or extracting information from its environment : Our "reality " is just the product of the interaction of consciousness as an active and proactive agent with its environment .........

Even science itself must include the subjective in it that cannot be denied as such : in this information age ,it's highly relevant and important to acknowledge the fact that the subjective information cannot be quantized , in total contrast to the objective one , and that the former can even change the latter .

You don't listen to neither what i was saying all along , not to what PEAR , let alone to what non-materlialist scientists have to say on the subject : you just keep on sweeping all those anomalies for which materialism never can account under the carpet ...

What's the purpose or even relevance of this discussion then, if you can't acknowledge the existence of those anomalies and the fact thay are incompatible with materialism ?

Only materialist dogmatism prevents you from recognizing or seeing the facts that are in front of your very mind's eyes ...

Sticking to materialism, no matter what , despite the existence of all those anomalies that are clearly incompatible with materialism , sticking thus to the materialist false belief assumption that the whole universe can be explained only through material processes , while QM itself , to mention just that one, has been clearly showing to all of us the central and key role of consciousness in shaping the phsyical reality itself by also being able to change and influence its environment , including machines' output ... , objective data , including the design interpretation and outcome of experiments and much more , sticking to materialism thus despite all that is just plain and simple ...dogmatism , no science .

I thought this forum was all about science , not about some sort of a dogmatic secular religion : materialism .

Well, you need to check out the very definition of the nature of science then ....or that of naturalism or methodological naturalism , once again , here below :

« Last Edit: 30/10/2014 19:36:16 by DonQuichotte »
 

Offline cheryl j

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I don't follow you here : what do you mean by saying that  if drugs and brain damage simply prevented other people from detecting your conscious experience ????

Stroke victims can no longer perform certain mental functions , certain of their body parts get paralyzed ....simply because their brain damaged areas prevent their minds from doing that .That's why they can recover from that through brain excercises and other therapies....
... I said : when certain brain areas are damaged , so , consciousness gets blocked from expressing itself at that level , since consciousness and brain are inseparable , so , consciousness has to "flow " , so to speak, through the brain and body ...

...Consciousness is still fully intact of course , it just gets blocked from flowing or expressing itself through brain and body : the unfortunate people who become victims of brain injuries, damage , diseases , ....don't get access to certain aspects of their consciousness , even though the latter is still fully intact .


Strokes do not just prevent people from moving an arm, or moving their mouth to form words. Depending on what part of the brain is damaged, it can change the experience of consciousness itself, disrupt memory, change personality, the ability to understand language, find words. What's more people are often aware that something has changed.

Your fractured version of consciousness, with part of it functionally perfectly non locally and another version functioning abnormally -but more importantly - experiencing an entirely different version of reality and conscious experience,  is absurd.

What ever happened to your hero Karl Popper and falsifiability? Is your theory not the best example of what he means by pseudoscience that one could possibly imagine? I could just as easily argue, with the same degree of evidence, that my consciousness originates and emanates from Alancalverd. That the reason we are not exactly alike is that my receiver is kind of old and dinged up; I can't access all his data, not all his consciousness is "getting through." We are all actually Alancalverd, we just don't know until we are reunited with him at death.
 

Offline cheryl j

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It’s strange that even though Don has said the material and immaterial are inseparable, the world is psycho-phyical, he doesn’t seem to have much interest in the physical side of reality. I don't think I've seen him post on any topic that wasn't mystical in nature.

 Anti-materialists or mystics dismiss the brain as some uninteresting glob of protoplasm that contributes almost nothing to the understanding of consciousness. Neurological disorders do not provide any insight into the workings of the brain or mind for them, and inspire no more curiosity than a broken dishwasher abandoned at a dump. fMRI studies are no more intriguing than watching ones hairdryer go through the xray machine at the airport.  And that’s  too bad, in my estimation. They are missing some interesting, awe inspiring and just plain handy stuff.

One thing I would to know more about is how memories and other types of information are encoded in the brain. David Cooper points out that computers can do memory, they can process information; that is not consciousness and does not require it. Nevertheless, I think it is a primary reason some people have trouble believing that consciousness could be just a physical process carried out in the brain. They cannot imagine how something so abstract, and amorphous as a thought could be encoded and stored by cells or molecules, connections, or maps in the brain. Because images, ideas, thoughts, memories don’t seem “like" those things. For some reason people have no problem with information or images stored in zeros and ones in computers. Yet, there seems to be this unshakeable sense that our own memories or thoughts have to exist in some miniature, ephemeral, yet holistic format that resembles the way we experience them, not simply “code.” The Cartesian theatre will not die.

The second thing I’d like to learn more about is the neurological correlates of qualia. I don’t accept that qualia is nonphysical even though it is often defined as such. And I don’t accept that qualia is a useless and unfalsifiable concept as Dennett complains. VS Ramachadran  made admirable inroads to studying things that were once thought unstudiable, unverifiable and entirely subjective. His clinical research about phenomena like blind sight, synethesia, phatom limbs, akinetic mutism, Capgras delusion, etc and provides more insight than anything I’ve ever gotten from philosophers like David Chalmers or Thomas Nagel. An interesting line of study would be comparing neuro-correlates of sensory activated qualia, with those of internally generated qualia (dreams, memories and imagination) as they are somewhat experientially similar but have key differences, and these differences must reflect some underlying difference in structure or activity. Ramachandran discusses this as well.

Finally, as I mentioned, I like Damasio’s approach to consciousness, emphasizing things like body states and emotion.

That is what I would be more interested in discussing than astral projections of my true consciousness in some other dimension.
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Naturalism :

Source : Encyclopædia Britannica ,Ultimate Reference Suite 2013 :

 In philosophy, a theory that relates scientific method to philosophy by affirming that all beings and events in the universe (whatever their inherent character may be) are natural. Consequently, all knowledge of the universe falls within the pale of scientific investigation. Although naturalism denies the existence of truly supernatural realities, it makes allowance for the supernatural, provided that knowledge of it can be had indirectly—that is, that natural objects be influenced by the so-called supernatural entities in a detectable way.

Naturalism presumes that nature is in principle completely knowable. There is in nature a regularity, unity, and wholeness that implies objective laws, without which the pursuit of scientific knowledge would be absurd. Man's endless search for concrete proofs of his beliefs is seen as a confirmation of naturalistic methodology. Naturalists point out that even when one scientific theory is abandoned in favour of another, man does not despair of knowing nature, nor does he repudiate the “natural method” in his search for truth. Theories change; methodology does not.

While naturalism has often been equated with materialism, it is much broader in scope. Materialism is indeed naturalistic, but the converse is not necessarily true. Strictly speaking, naturalism has no ontological preference; i.e., no bias toward any particular set of categories of reality: dualism and monism, atheism and theism, idealism and materialism are all per se compatible with it. So long as all of reality is natural, no other limitations are imposed. Naturalists have in fact expressed a wide variety of views, even to the point of developing a theistic naturalism.

Only rarely do naturalists give attention to metaphysics (which they deride), and they make no philosophical attempts to establish their position. Naturalists simply assert that nature is reality, the whole of it. There is nothing beyond, nothing “other than,” no “other world” of being.

Naturalism's greatest vogue occurred during the 1930s and '40s, chiefly in the United States among philosophers such as F.J.E. Woodbridge, Morris R. Cohen, John Dewey, Ernest Nagel, and Sidney Hook.

Source :

    * MLA Style:   "naturalism." Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Ultimate Reference Suite.  Chicago: Encyclopædia Britannica, 2013.
    * APA Style:   naturalism. (2013). Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Ultimate Reference Suite.  Chicago: Encyclopædia Britannica.
 

Offline cheryl j

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Oh, please : don't play the creationist card .Don't use it as an exit strategy or tactic to get around the real issues at hand, which are  :

Lol.
I don't care what you call it Don, creationism, intelligent design, Natural Selection Denial, anti-Darwinism,  - the SA article addresses your complaints about evolution, as I have in the past. But you won't engage an discussion about specific points, so there's no point in providing any rebuttal.
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Cheryl :

Who said i am not interested in the physical reality then ? Am i some sort of a ghost or spirit with no physical body or physical brain ? with no interactions with the physical reality ? lol Come on .

Do i not live on earth ?  lol

I am just not interested in the materialist version of the nature of reality : not interested in the materialist version of science : that does not mean that i reject all what materialist science has been revealing so far regarding the physical reality  , needless to add : that's a nuance or a difference you're still not able to see , ironically enough , despite all those threads and posts i have been displaying on the subject , including those of this thread .

Don't you find that odd ?

I am interested in the fact that science has to progress through dealing with all those anomalies for which materialism can never account , in the fact that science must be liberated from materialism , in the fact that science has been held back by materialism , by getting imprisoned within the false materialist dogmatic belief system , in the fact that materialist science has been providing an approximately correct and fundamentally false version of the nature of reality , since science should be all about trying to deal with all the nature of reality with which it can deal , and not remain confined within the materialist false version of the nature of reality thus , otherwise science would  loose its credibility and relevance as a valid source of knowledge,and stagnate as a result  .

I have read and studied the works of a large number of materialist scientists , as well as those of non-materialist ones , not to mention that of PEAR .... .

You, guys , are the ones who can't seem to be able to get out of your materialist key hole box within which you have been deliberately confining yourselves .

Ironically enough , even the physical reality itself is shaped by consciousness , and even the objective empirical data can be changed, influenced and more  by consciousness : see above .

Enough discussing materialist dogmatism thus : i wanna discuss science that embraces both the material and the immaterial , that embraces the real nature of reality , the one level of it with which it can deal at least , science  whose methodology , epistemology and vocabulary that  cannot be restricted by any world view , not  dogmatic materialism thus .

I wanna discuss that real science , not dogmatic materialism or scientism :

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientism
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Cheryl :

Sorry : no time left to reply to your above displayed posts .

See this great book that talks about all that materialist brainwash or non-sense in neuroscience : ( It cots about 21 $ , i can provide you with a link to download it for free , if you want to .All you have to do is ask+ other similar books and more .) :

http://www.amazon.com/Brainwashed-Seductive-Appeal-Mindless-Neuroscience/dp/0465018777/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1414702986&sr=1-1&keywords=brainwashed+the+seductive+appeal+of+mindless+neuroscience
 

Offline dlorde

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how does your theory account for brain damage causing personality changes? Is personality not part of consciousness?

...Well, once again, consciousness has to express itself through the brain channels , so to speak ,since brain and consciousness are inseparable , so, when certain areas of the brain are damaged , then certain aspects of consciousness seem to be reduced , altered or gone . The same goes for the loss of self-identity or personality ...through brain damage ...so.
<blather>

Vague, but I'll take that as a partial answer that suggesting that the brain handles those aspects.

OK, so we know that personality, identity, sense of self, memory, language, recognition, comprehension,  and all other recognisable attributes and adjuncts of what we usually recognise as consciousness can be significantly altered, disrupted, or destroyed by brain damage, in ways not consistent with the brain simply being a 'filter' (it must be doing more than filtering to be able to change your personality and behaviour) - and the suggestion is that they are things the brain does on behalf of this non-material consciousness.

So what is left for the non-material consciousness? it would seem to be nothing but an anonymous 'elan-vital', sans self, sans personality, sans identity; to paraphrase Shakespeare, "Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything".

The implication should be obvious - if it existed at all, it would be a waste of space. It would have no apparent functional contribution whatsoever; a redundant conceptual anachronism  [8D]
 

Offline dlorde

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...One thing I would to know more about is how memories and other types of information are encoded in the brain. David Cooper points out that computers can do memory, they can process information; that is not consciousness and does not require it. Nevertheless, I think it is a primary reason some people have trouble believing that consciousness could be just a physical process carried out in the brain. They cannot imagine how something so abstract, and amorphous as a thought could be encoded and stored by cells or molecules, connections, or maps in the brain. Because images, ideas, thoughts, memories don’t seem “like" those things. For some reason people have no problem with information or images stored in zeros and ones in computers. Yet, there seems to be this unshakeable sense that our own memories or thoughts have to exist in some miniature, ephemeral, yet holistic format that resembles the way we experience them, not simply “code.” The Cartesian theatre will not die.
Perhaps they would be interested in some research that recorded brain activity in rats during learning a task, then chemically wiped that memory, and subsequently restored it by replaying the activity recording into the same brain pathways - demonstrating electronic storage of memory.
 

Offline cheryl j

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Naturalism :

Source : Encyclopædia Britannica ,Ultimate Reference Suite 2013 :

 In philosophy, a theory that relates scientific method to philosophy by affirming that all beings and events in the universe (whatever their inherent character may be) are natural. Consequently, all knowledge of the universe falls within the pale of scientific investigation. Although naturalism denies the existence of truly supernatural realities, it makes allowance for the supernatural, provided that knowledge of it can be had indirectly—that is, that natural objects be influenced by the so-called supernatural entities in a detectable way.......

 

Well if Naturalism makes sense to you, I actually think you are in very good company.  Perhaps this will be of interest.

Moving Naturalism Forward
- Interdisciplinary Workshop
Sponsored by the Division of Physics, Mathematics, and Astronomy and the Moore Center for Theoretical Cosmology and Physics, California Institute of Technology.

http://preposterousuniverse.com/naturalism2012/
« Last Edit: 31/10/2014 02:58:55 by cheryl j »
 

Offline cheryl j

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...One thing I would to know more about is how memories and other types of information are encoded in the brain. David Cooper points out that computers can do memory, they can process information; that is not consciousness and does not require it. Nevertheless, I think it is a primary reason some people have trouble believing that consciousness could be just a physical process carried out in the brain. They cannot imagine how something so abstract, and amorphous as a thought could be encoded and stored by cells or molecules, connections, or maps in the brain. Because images, ideas, thoughts, memories don’t seem “like" those things. For some reason people have no problem with information or images stored in zeros and ones in computers. Yet, there seems to be this unshakeable sense that our own memories or thoughts have to exist in some miniature, ephemeral, yet holistic format that resembles the way we experience them, not simply “code.” The Cartesian theatre will not die.
Perhaps they would be interested in some research that recorded brain activity in rats during learning a task, then chemically wiped that memory, and subsequently restored it by replaying the activity recording into the same brain pathways - demonstrating electronic storage of memory.

That is impressive, really interesting. I also think optogenetics and other advances in neuron imaging will be helpful.
 

Offline alancalverd

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Naturalism :

Source : Encyclopædia Britannica ,Ultimate Reference Suite 2013 :

 In philosophy, a theory that relates scientific method to philosophy by affirming that all beings and events in the universe (whatever their inherent character may be) are natural. Consequently, all knowledge of the universe falls within the pale of scientific investigation. Although naturalism denies the existence of truly supernatural realities, it makes allowance for the supernatural, provided that knowledge of it can be had indirectly—that is, that natural objects be influenced by the so-called supernatural entities in a detectable way.


This seems like a very complicated way of saying nothing at all. But then it is philosophy, after all.
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Naturalism :

Source : Encyclopædia Britannica ,Ultimate Reference Suite 2013 :

 In philosophy, a theory that relates scientific method to philosophy by affirming that all beings and events in the universe (whatever their inherent character may be) are natural. Consequently, all knowledge of the universe falls within the pale of scientific investigation. Although naturalism denies the existence of truly supernatural realities, it makes allowance for the supernatural, provided that knowledge of it can be had indirectly—that is, that natural objects be influenced by the so-called supernatural entities in a detectable way.


This seems like a very complicated way of saying nothing at all. But then it is philosophy, after all.

Really ?

Science is naturalistic and is supposed to have a naturalistic methodology : that's what that article is all about : about the epistemology , methodology and philosophy behind science , where dualist , idealist and theistic naturalism are not excluded from science = idealist dualist and theistic naturalism can be also scientific naturalistic , not just materialism ,and hence there is also what can be called non-materialist science thus .

Naturalism that requires only that there is nothing other , nothing beyond nature : i see not why that last century naturalistic philosophy should be so ossified as to determin for science and scientists today or tomorrow what particular area of inquiry they should stick to and not cross : science that's all about free inquiry or should be so at least ,so, if scientists would discover that the nature of reality goes beyond nature , why should science not explore that possibility freely then ?

Naturalistic science or scientific naturalistic methodology that are not exclusively materialistic = science does neither require materialism nor does it need to be materialistic = science is all about methodology , the naturalistic one that cannot be restricted by any world view like that of materialism .

PEAR has been extending the scientific methodology , as a response to all those consciousness -related anomalies for which materialism can never account , by trying to include the subjective in the scientific epistemology and methodology that can no longer remain just rational analytical empirical .

Empiricism must be extended as to integrate the subjective , since the subjective and the objective are inseparable = there is no such a thing as the independent -observer = consciousness shapes the physical reality ...and cannot thus be separated from it .

Better still , what we call reality is in fact just the product of the mutual interactions between consciousness and its environment ,where the active and proactive conscious agent plays a central role .

In this information age , only objective information can be quantified though , the subjective one is extremely difficult to quantify thus , but , the latter makes nonetheless an important and equal part of the information and must also be taken into consideration in science , if the latter wanna deliver a relatively accurate representation or reflection of the nature of reality .
« Last Edit: 31/10/2014 18:16:06 by DonQuichotte »
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Naturalism :

Source : Encyclopædia Britannica ,Ultimate Reference Suite 2013 :

 In philosophy, a theory that relates scientific method to philosophy by affirming that all beings and events in the universe (whatever their inherent character may be) are natural. Consequently, all knowledge of the universe falls within the pale of scientific investigation. Although naturalism denies the existence of truly supernatural realities, it makes allowance for the supernatural, provided that knowledge of it can be had indirectly—that is, that natural objects be influenced by the so-called supernatural entities in a detectable way.......

 

Well if Naturalism makes sense to you, I actually think you are in very good company.  Perhaps this will be of interest.

Moving Naturalism Forward
- Interdisciplinary Workshop
Sponsored by the Division of Physics, Mathematics, and Astronomy and the Moore Center for Theoretical Cosmology and Physics, California Institute of Technology.

http://preposterousuniverse.com/naturalism2012/

That's no conclusive evidence for the materialistic claim that memory can be stored or encoded in the brain , not even remotely close thus : that's just like implanting or replacing a missing component , or damaged tissue or damaged area of the brain by implants ,be it a device , a recording or whatever , no evidence for storage of memory in the brain : that's the deceptive simplistic naive realism  at work  : what you see is not what you get .

See ? You never seem to tire of claiming that non-materialist scientists , including PEAR , do design experiments as to confirm their expectations through confirmation bias : well , this above mentioned experiment is a clear example of materialistic confirmation bias , in the sense that since materialism assumes that consciousness and the mind , and their related memory ...are just brain activity , no wonder that they try to confirm that bias of theirs , by trying to "prove " that memory is stored in the brain, consciousness is encoded in or computed by the brain ...  lol
« Last Edit: 31/10/2014 18:30:26 by DonQuichotte »
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Cheryl : see the following :

"Brainwashed, The Seductive Appeal of Mindless Neuroscience " : By Sally Satel and Scott O. Lilienfeld .

Epilogue:
MIND OVER GRAY MATTER :


Brain imaging, the iconic tool of neuroscience, finds itself at the
eye of a perfect storm of seduction.
 Riding one current is the glamour of a sophisticated and exciting new technology.
 Borne aloft on another is the brain itself, an organ of great moment and mystery.
On a third front floats an overly simplifi ed brain- to- behavior narrative,
all rendered in stunning biological portraiture. It is easy to see
how nonprofessionals, and an occasional expert, tossed by these powerful
swells, can get swept away.
We wrote this book to serve as an anchor. Our project is not a
critique of neuroscience or of its signature instrument, brain imaging.
It is foremost an exposé of mindless neuroscience: the oversimplifi cation,
interpretive license, and premature application of brain science
in the legal, commercial, clinical, and philosophical domains.1 Secondarily
but importantly, it is also a critique of the increasingly fashionable
assumption that the brain is the most important level of analysis for understanding human behavior, and that the mind— the psychological products of brain activity— is more or less expendable.
We are unreserved champions of neurotechnological progress.
We are certain that brain imaging techniques and other exciting
developments in neuroscience will further elucidate the relationship
between the brain and the mind. We deeply admire the neuroscientists
whose inquiries are yielding new discoveries and, perhaps soon,
much- needed treatments. In the preceding chapters, however, we
have tried to bring a circumspect view to real-world applications of
neuroscience and to speculations about where insights gleaned from
brain science may take our society. As we’ve seen, the illuminated
brain cannot be trusted to offer an unfi ltered view of the mind. Nor
is it logical to regard behavior as beyond an individual’s control
simply because the associated neural mechanisms can be shown to
be “in the brain.”
Scans alone cannot tell us whether a person is a shameless liar,
loyal to a product brand, compelled to use cocaine, or incapable of
resisting an urge to kill. In fact, brain- derived data currently add
little or nothing to the more ordinary sources of information we
rely on to make those determinations; mostly, they are neuroredundant.
At worst, neuroscientifi c information sometimes distort our
ability to distinguish good explanations of psychological phenomena
from bad ones.
We don’t foresee neuroscience prompting a legal revolution. We
agree with Stephen Morse that neuroscience will take its place along
with other sciences that had their moment in the courtroom: Freudian
analysis, behavioral psychology, the Chicago school of sociology,
and the promise of ge ne tic explanations. “The only thing different
about neuroscience,” according to Morse, “is that we have prettier
pictures and it appears more scientifi c. With the probable exception
of Freudianism, the other disciplines have indeed made courtroom
contributions to understanding why people act as they do. But they
have hardly supplanted the bread- and- butter tools of the law, such as
witness reports and cross- examination.
Neuroscientists cannot yet forge tight causal links between brain
data and behavior. Until they can shed light on the mea sur able attributes
that the law regards as important for culpability— who is and who isn’t responsive to reason— the rhetorical value of brain images will greatly outstrip their legal relevance.
Within the law, ascriptions of criminal and moral responsibility do not hinge on what caused the bad behavior, but on whether wrongdoers possessed sufficient rational capacity to have been influenced by foreseeable consequences and to alter their behavior accordingly. This is why it has
been said that “actions speak louder than images” in today’s courtrooms,
as well they ought to.
Brain- based explanations for excessive appetites and for social
behaviors that elide the crucial psychological, social, and cultural
levels of analysis fall into the trap of neurocentrism. Therefore, they
are virtually guaranteed to be impoverished explanations. Although
scientists can describe human behavior on a number of different
levels— the neuronal, the mental, the behavioral, the social— they
are not close to bridging the yawning gap between the physical and
psychological. The brain enables the mind and thus the person. But
neuroscience cannot yet, if ever, fully explain how this happens.
As brain science continues to permeate the culture, neuroliteracy
becomes ever more important. Neuroscience is one of the most important
intellectual achievements of the past half century, but it is
young and still getting its bearings. To demand the wrong things of
brain science, to overpromise on what it can deliver, and to apply its
technology prematurely will not only tarnish its credibility, it will
also risk diverting crucial and limited resources, including federal
funding for research, into less profi table ventures and blind alleys.
Skilled science journalists and bloggers, as well as neuroscientists
and phi los o phers who write for the public and neuroethicists (a hybrid
sort of scholar with training in both practical philosophy and
science), now see part of their jobs as protecting the integrity of neuroscience from the growing legion of brain overclaimers.
 Responsible translators of neuroscience encourage a healthy skepticism,
cautioning judges and policy makers in par tic u lar that brain activity
elicited under narrow experimental conditions cannot currently yield enough information to explain or predict human behavior in the real world, let alone inform the design of social policy.
Crucial lessons in neuroliteracy must also inculcate the importance
of distinguishing the questions that neuroscience is equipped
to answer from those that it is not. The job of neuroscience is to
elucidate the brain mechanisms associated with mental phenomena,
and when technical prowess is applied to the questions it can usefully
address, the prospects for conceptual breakthroughs and clinical
advances are bountiful. Asking the wrong questions of the brain,
however, is at best a dead end and at worst a misappropriation of
the mantle of science.
Recall neuroscientist Sam Harris, whom we cited early in this
book. “The more we understand ourselves at the level of the brain,” he
wrote, “the more we will see that there are right and wrong answers
to questions of human values.”5 How so? Neuroscience can help
answer questions about the neural pro cesses involved in moral decision
making, but it is not at all evident how such discoverable facts
could ever constitute a prescription for how things should be. Surely,
empirical facts can help us act more effectively on our values— if we
want to rehabilitate prisoners more effectively, data on new therapies
are essential. And neuroscience may be able to offer guidance in this
regard. But whether we should jettison the practice of retribution on
moral grounds is not a question that science, neuroscience included,
can answer. Indeed, history is replete with feckless and at times
bloody attempts at social engineering through biology. Then and now,
it is a serious mistake to think that one can erect an ethical system
based on science alone; phi los o phers call this confusion between
“ought” and “is” the naturalistic fallacy.
Nonetheless, the great cultural authority of brain science renders it
vulnerable to conscription in the ser vice of one or another po liti cal or
social agenda. The framing of addiction as a brain disease to attract
more funding for research and better ser vices for drug abusers might
seem benign; in most cases it is surely well intentioned. But that
perspective sorely misrepresents the multilayered nature of addiction and
risks distracting clinicians from the most promising kinds of interventions.
The same is true to some extent for many other psychological
maladies (including psychopathy, the condition that likely affl icted
murderer Brian Dugan), which, although surely rooted in brain dysfunction
at some level, can be fully understood only by also accommodating
the idiom of motives, feelings, thoughts, and decisions.
Likewise, invoking brain science as a rationale for negating blame
and abandoning punishment practices is misguided. Neuroscience
itself is not a threat to personhood. It will help explain how human
agency works, but it will not explain it away. A strictly utilitarian
model of justice— one in which we punish people solely because
aversive stimuli make society work better, not because blame is truly
deserved— has its merits and its shortcomings, depending on your
view. But whether human beings who live in a material world can
also be moral agents is not a question that brain science can resolve.
Not unless, that is, investigators can show something truly spectacular:
that people are not conscious beings whose actions flow from
reasons and who are responsive to reason. True, we do not exert as
much conscious control over our actions as we think we do, but this
doesn’t mean that we are powerless.
In 1996, author Tom Wolfe penned a widely cited essay, “Sorry,
but Your Soul Just Died.” Neuroscience, he wrote, was on “the threshold
of a unifi ed theory that will have an impact as powerful as that
of Darwinism a hundred years ago.
 Almost two de cades later, the excitement surrounding neuroscience continues to grow, as well it should.
But the promise of a unifi ed theory in the foreseeable future
is an illusion. As with sociobiology and the genomic revolution—
two valuable conceptual legacies of Darwinism— we should extract
the wisdom neuroscience has to offer without asking it to explain all
of human nature.

In 2011, science writer David Dobbs recounted a sobering encounter
at a gathering of neuroscientists. He asked them, “Of what we need to know to fully understand the brain, what percentage do we know now? They all responded with fi gures in the single digits.
This humbling estimate will improve with time, of course.
Brain imaging will become more precise; new technologies are yet to be unveiled or even envisioned.
 Yet no matter how dazzling the fruits of inquiry or how clever the means by which they are obtained, it is our values that will guide us in implementing them for good or for bad.
The danger lies in muddling those values under the pretense of following
where neuroscience supposedly leads us.
To some neuroscientists and phi los o phers, you may be nothing
more than your brain— and of course, without a brain there is no
consciousness at all.
 But to you, you are a “self,” and to others you are a person— a person whose brain affords, at once, the capacity for decisions, the ability to study how decisions happen, and the wisdom to weigh the responsibilities and freedoms that these decision make possible.
« Last Edit: 31/10/2014 19:56:41 by DonQuichotte »
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Naturalism :

Source : Encyclopædia Britannica ,Ultimate Reference Suite 2013 :

 In philosophy, a theory that relates scientific method to philosophy by affirming that all beings and events in the universe (whatever their inherent character may be) are natural. Consequently, all knowledge of the universe falls within the pale of scientific investigation. Although naturalism denies the existence of truly supernatural realities, it makes allowance for the supernatural, provided that knowledge of it can be had indirectly—that is, that natural objects be influenced by the so-called supernatural entities in a detectable way.......

 

Well if Naturalism makes sense to you, I actually think you are in very good company.  Perhaps this will be of interest.

Moving Naturalism Forward
- Interdisciplinary Workshop
Sponsored by the Division of Physics, Mathematics, and Astronomy and the Moore Center for Theoretical Cosmology and Physics, California Institute of Technology.

http://preposterousuniverse.com/naturalism2012/

You gotta be kidding me , Cheryl : materialists on naturalism ? : a joke :
Naturalism moving forward to be reduced to materialistic naturalism ?= scientism lol : See Britannica on naturalism, once again .

I wanted to download those video series from youtube on the subject , but , the moment i saw Dennett , Dawkins in it , i reconsidered lol

The latter figures are the most exclusive bigots fascists ever , who assume that science is "on their side " lol, come on .

They are perfect examples of scientism in science lol , the most narrow-minded versions of scientism ever .
 

Offline DonQuichotte

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how does your theory account for brain damage causing personality changes? Is personality not part of consciousness?

...Well, once again, consciousness has to express itself through the brain channels , so to speak ,since brain and consciousness are inseparable , so, when certain areas of the brain are damaged , then certain aspects of consciousness seem to be reduced , altered or gone . The same goes for the loss of self-identity or personality ...through brain damage ...so.
<blather>

Vague, but I'll take that as a partial answer that suggesting that the brain handles those aspects.

OK, so we know that personality, identity, sense of self, memory, language, recognition, comprehension,  and all other recognisable attributes and adjuncts of what we usually recognise as consciousness can be significantly altered, disrupted, or destroyed by brain damage, in ways not consistent with the brain simply being a 'filter' (it must be doing more than filtering to be able to change your personality and behaviour) - and the suggestion is that they are things the brain does on behalf of this non-material consciousness.

So what is left for the non-material consciousness? it would seem to be nothing but an anonymous 'elan-vital', sans self, sans personality, sans identity; to paraphrase Shakespeare, "Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything".

The implication should be obvious - if it existed at all, it would be a waste of space. It would have no apparent functional contribution whatsoever; a redundant conceptual anachronism  [8D]

The physical brain is just a medium for consciousness , both ways : they are in fact inseparable and consciousness is the one that plays the central or key role in shaping the physical brain , not the other way around (see neuropalsticity or self-directed neuroplasticity at least ,neurofeedback...the effects of meditation , mindfulness , placebo/nocebo , beliefs ....on the brain and body through consciousness and uncosnciousness .) and on the rest of the physical reality .

What happens exactly when brain areas are damaged through injuries, traumas , brain diseases, mental illness, genetic defects ,stroke   ...so, all sorts of corresponding memory loss , loss of self-identity , loss of speech , and the rest take place ? : that 's still a big mystery for which the materialist production theory can never account  : consciousness-related anomalies , the mind -body mystery or hard problem in science , and other anomalies were /are and will be the ones that will be helping science to progress thanks to those anomalies' raw material : that's how science progresses when confornted with anomalies for which the prevailing wisdom cannot account for : see the history of science ...
That's the reason behind the birth of PEAR and behind the manifesto of this thread .

Neuroscience will never be able to explain consciousness (It's good to know about the brain , how it works ...though ) , simply because consciousness and the mind are neither in the brain nor brain activity= these are just materialist extensions of the materialist dogmatic belief system in science , no empirical evidence , together with all those desperate materialistic attempts to confirm their materialistic expectations and bias through trying to "prove " that the mind is in or is computed by the brain, memory is stored in the brain ....in vain :

See the consciousness models that were developed by PEAR at least ,thanks to QM .

See what Carter said through all those prominent scientists regarding how consciousness shapes the physical reality , including the physical brain ...

The materialist model or theory of consciousness is false , so, we should try to find alternatives to that : PEAR and non-materialist scientists have been trying to do just that .

When Planck stumbled upon that anomaly that proved Newtonian physics to be approximately correct and fundamentally false , he or other scientists did not discard that evidence or just tried to sweep it under the carpet by sticking to the determinist classical mechanical world view , no matter what like you , guys , do regarding the false materialist world view in science that was built upon classical Physics , no , they moved on to give birth to ...QM .

That's what PEAR and non-materialist scientists have been doing to pave the way for the birth of the post-materialistic science where consciousness plays a central and key active and proactive role , where consciousness is inseparable from its physical reality with which it interacts , and which it shapes ...



 

Offline DonQuichotte

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Cheryl :

Regarding neuroscience :

See an excerpt from this book here above : " Brainwashed : the seductive appeal of mindless neuroscience ." .

Not to mention that i have already posted an excerpt from "The spiritual Brain " and from " Brain wars " , i guess, by non-materialist neuroscientist Mario Beauregard + I have even offered you a link through which you could download his "Spiritual brain ..." audiobook for free , where he deals with all that materialistic production theory non-sense at the level of neuroscience and much more .

Regarding evolution :

I have already posted an excerpt from " Darwin's Doubt ..." By Stephen Meyer where you can also find out there about all those increasing numbers of even mainstream scientists who have been questioning some key tenets of Darwinism and much more  .

Not to mention the work of PEAR regarding consciousness related anomalies , and the works of many non-materialist scientists ...as the subject matter of this thread .

Or just watch : James A.Shapiro 's following lecture about his " Revisiting Evolution in the 21st century " book :


« Last Edit: 31/10/2014 21:30:10 by DonQuichotte »
 

Offline dlorde

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That's no conclusive evidence for the materialistic claim that memory can be stored or encoded in the brain , not even remotely close thus
Recent evidence is consistent with, and strongly supportive of, that claim, if not conclusive. That, taken together with similarly supportive research results, including the rat memory experiments, and in the absence of evidence to the contrary and any plausible alternative hypothesis, means that the only reasonable position to take is the that memory is stored or encoded in the brain.

Of course, that position is provisional - if contrary evidence, and/or a plausible alternative hypothesis is forthcoming, the position can be reconsidered. That's how science operates - follow the evidence.
 

Offline dlorde

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... That's what PEAR and non-materialist scientists have been doing to pave the way for the birth of the post-materialistic science where consciousness plays a central and key active and proactive role , where consciousness is inseparable from its physical reality with which it interacts , and which it shapes ...

Let PEAR go, Don, it's an interesting dud that failed replication. Like its namesake, it started unpromisingly, took a long time to ripen, then turned to mush when people tried to get serious with it.
 

Offline alancalverd

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So the hypothesis is that consciousness is essential to the conduct of the physical universe. Therefore everything that has ever happened, anywhere, was driven by consciousness.

Now a lot of what goes on in the universe is inimical to life: black holes, stellar infernos, collapsing stars.... but it goes on. So either (a) consciousness is not a property of living things, or (b) living things can somehow make changes in distant galaxies, billions of years before living things existed.

If (a) then PEAR, Conan Doyle, and every other investigator of the paranormal, have been wasting their time playing with human subjects which can only introduce noise and bias into the system: they should be studying consciousness that is not embedded in the material, or the consciousness of rocks. If (b), their entire concept of causality is flawed because a conscious being may have affected the experiment some time before you even conceived of it.
 

Offline jeffreyH

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How do we know that the whole universe is not a single life form made of smaller components? That is galaxies, stars and planets. We are made of single cells unified into a larger organism all cooperating. We may be the equivalent of cell proteins. The womb is then the big bang singularity. The equivalent of DNA for universes creates the laws of physics for each new universe. There that's my theory. Bit like cosmic Gaia.
 

Offline cheryl j

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Cheryl :

Who said i am not interested in the physical reality then ?'......

........ that does not mean that i reject all what materialist science has been revealing so far regarding the physical reality  , needless to add : that's a nuance or a difference you're still not able to see , ironically enough , despite all those threads and posts i have been displaying on the subject , including those of this thread .

That's a completely disingenuous response. You've shown repeatedly no matter what the topic is, that you prefer the unproved mystical, immaterial explanation over a  physical one, even if that physical one is pretty obvious and straight forward, and has years and years of replicated evidence and models that make consistently make accurate predictions. I can't believe the way you bandy about the expression 'Occam's razor', because you will go to any length to shoe horn the immaterial into biological processes, even those without gaps in need of a God.
 

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