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DrmDoc last won the day on September 16 2018

DrmDoc had the most liked content!

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About DrmDoc

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    Neuroscience, Neuropsychology, Oneirology, Brain Evolution,

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  1. If I'm not too late to this discussion, I'm familiar with studies involving the brain and magnetic fields and I've reviewed the study summary you've provided here in context with these other studies. Like you, I could find nothing overtly disputable in the article"s referenced finding. Notwithstanding, a credible theoretical foundation for this area of science might be found in how magnetic fields resonate or otherwise interact with the metals and minerals essential to our cellular function--IMO.
  2. Your question is now unlike the perennial conundrum "Which came first, chicken or egg?" For psychosis to occur there must be a cause that alters brain function, chemistry or structure. Rather than a cause, psychosis is primarily an effect of some influence on brain function, chemistry or structure, which may lead to further functional and structural deterioration. The key is to determine and address the functional or structural cause of a psychosis--a determination of whether the disorder arises from some environmental, social or physical cause.
  3. From the article: "In contrast, functional brain imaging studies locate the contents of consciousness mostly within the cortex, in ‘cortico-cortical’ circuits." Although not the focus of the article, a mention should be made that the "content of consciousness" --meaning, in my view, the sensory experiences and memories comprising our conscious behavioral responses to stimuli--arrives in the cortex initially via the thalamus and that no activity occurs in the cortex without neural relays from the thalamus. What I believe the researchers have discovered in the L5p neuron is where conscious integration occurs, which is where afferent stimuli from the thalamus merge with efferent cortical responses to produce our overall behavioral responses. Thumbs up for the article.
  4. Although I've cited Wikipedia often in this forum as a convenience, I don't particularly consider it a sacrosanct resource for scientific studies and definitions. My perspective, understanding, and definitions are primarily based on my assessment of the available metadata and peer reviewed research on the subject of the topics I've explored here and in other science forum discussions. What I've learned from the metadata and research regarding the nature of instinct, mind, and consciousness exceeds what some may consider current or reliable in Wikipedia--IMHO.
  5. Yes, you did as follows: I agree that your definition (above) is poor. The following, from prior comment on this topic, is mine: "...as I define, instinctive behaviors are those behaviors a species engages without the appearance of a thought process; whereas, mentation behaviors are those a species engage that appear to involve a thought process...". I made no statement of instinctive behaviors being defined as "animal like behaviors" nor did I define "mentation process" as "neural activity that enables human like behaviors." These are your words and definitions and, indeed, they are poor. Clearly, I've made no such admission as you believe, hope, or imagine by your statement above. Perhaps you misunderstood my definition but the comments you are attempting to ascribe to me comprise your words and definitions, which do not carry nor convey my perspective, meaning, or understanding. Devolving into inane commentary and deviations will neither support your position nor serve the furtherance of this discussion. Fundamentally, we cannot understand anything about the nature of other species without references relatable to human experience and understanding. As my final entry in support of the position I've tried to convey, we cannot even understand each other as humans of different nationalities without references relatable to our individual nationality, experiences, and understanding. For example, a person of French nationality, who does not know or speak English, will not understand the words we have used in this discussion without translating these words into his or her language. Applying references relatable to humans to the behaviors of other species is how we, as a separate species, translate those behaviors into a behavioral language we are able to quantify and understand.
  6. What you consider "sensible and useful abstract notions" must be specifically relatable to human references and experiences to be understood by humans. Unequivocally , you cannot know what is understandable by other species without references relatable to experiences you understand as a human being and have acquired through your human experience. Using your example, you wouldn't know other species understood sensible and abstract notions such as numbers without first observing behaviors, which you can identify and reference from your human experience as proof of their understanding. I agree; the way you define instinct behaviors in contrast with mentation process here is indeed poor. However, as I define, instinctive behaviors are those behaviors that a species engages without the appearance of a thought process; whereas, mentation behaviors are those behaviors a species engage that appear to involve a thought process. Essentially, it is a distinction between automatic and controlled behaviors. Rather than an abstraction, it's useful tools for assessing species that engage in thought processes and those that do not.
  7. Your should understand that our "scientific rigors" for assessing qualities such as intelligence, memory, and consciousness are definitively based on the only perspective we as humans are fully capable of experiencing, referencing, and understanding. To be clear, it is neither "biased" nor "irrational" to acquire knowledge and insight of other species based on definitions and references that you, being human, can only understand from your human perspective and experience.
  8. If you can answer within the context of this response, isn't your "confidence" and what you "saw" in apes based on your very human references for what identifies and defines "memory"? Isn't your assessment of a "fast and accurate" ape memory based on a human reference for what determines memory that is fast and accurate? Given your prior comments, is your statement here "biased and irrational." Relying on references relatable to human experience should not be discounted for objectivity. Such references are the only window of insight fully open to our comprehension of other species. In congruence with our prior exchanges, references relatable to human experience are integral to our understanding of how qualities such as consciousness manifest in nonhuman species.
  9. I've noticed how the context of your responses deviate from the initial and central focus of mine and the topic of this discussion. Rather than continue down a path of seemingly endless deviations, let's see if we can wrap this up by returning to your central argument. The following quote appears to be your central argument: This is my central argument in context with yours: "Your comments here suggest that your idea of consciousness cannot be defined by human comparisons because you believe such comparisons lack objectivity. Consciousness cannot be defined or hypothesized without an initial point of reference. The word itself, consciousness, is a human invention and idea you would not be exploring in this discussion without that "human" origin. What small measure of understanding you may now hold about the nature of consciousness is based on references defined by your very human experience. In science, consciousness relatable to humanity is the only sort we are capable of fully understanding because of the reciprocity in brain function and behaviors among humans. Consciousness that isn't relatable to humanity isn't consciousness because it has no human reference and any definition you may ultimately settled on cannot be quantified without a cogent basis relatable to human experience." Above, is the entirety of my argument in context with the central focus of your argument without deviation. My comments, particularly those in bold typeface, couldn't be clearer when received in context with the central focus of yours. There's no definition for consciousness without references relatable to humans.
  10. I perceived your question as an attempt to deviate from our consciousness topic into a discussion specifically about the inner life of horses. My comments regarded what humans could not fully know about other species without references relatable to humans and the inner life of horses was merely an example. However, if you insist on this deviations, are you capable of knowing and explaining the inner life of horse without using relatable human references? To be clear, my comments were a response to your insertion of the term "programmed" into this discussion, which is a more inclusive term than instinct relative to behaviors. In previous comments, I regarded instinct relative to behaviors that specifically emerge "without the appearance of a thought process." Your use of programmed is relatable to areas and aspects of brain function that produces both instinctive behaviors and our thought processes. As I see it, I've made no errors of logic with exception of, perhaps, in not conveying my thoughts in ways you might more clearly understand. Regarding "How thinking enable us not to think?", thinking enables the behaviors we choose and not choose to engage. However brief, choosing not to think is a product of our thought processes. I've made no blanket assertion that "animals cannot think", particularly when humans are also animals. What I've asserted is a perspective of how we may identify and reference that quality in other species. What appears to be "circular" here is this discussion, which is probably caused by an absence of mutual understanding. Perhaps my comments in this latest response will further that understanding. Quantification of my perspective on consciousness requires an understanding of brain function and brain evolution. Since we are talking science, we cannot argue that consciousness isn't a product of brain function. Much of what we understand about our brain and it's functional structure is rooted in animal studies. Conversely, much of what we understand about the brains of other species is based on studies of our own. The reciprocity among interspecies functional studies is how I'm able to cogently convey reference relatable to human experience; e.g., Decorticate animal study.
  11. The position I was trying to convey is that there are clear distinctions in relatable behavior that we may use to reference and identify certain qualities of awareness relatable to other species. By no means am I inferring humanity is the only species capable of consciousness; however, I do suggests that there are many not capable of that quality as humanity expresses. I've suggested that certain behavioral distinctions could be used to identify species with lesser measures. What distinguishes human consciousness is our ability to create a cognitive environment within our brain structure that is capable of generating behaviors independent of those considered instinctual as I've defined in previous comments. What raises this cognitive environment above all others is that it is evidence of a mind, which is something many species do not appear to have.
  12. Ask yourself, can you make a conscious decision not to think? Can you just clear your thoughts and just zone out?
  13. As I wrote, "Indeed, humans are generally programmed to think, while many organisms do not appear to have that programming. Thought is what enables humanity's ability to override it programming and rise above all other species and organism. The way we distinguish those animals that do not appear capable of thought is by their inability to engage behaviors that override their programming." I define instinct as those behaviors engaged without the appearance of a thought process. Having a thought process is essential to consciously directed behaviors, which is opposite of those unconscious behaviors categorized as instinctive. Consciousness must be relatable to human behavior because that is the only way humans will be able to fully understand that quality. Consciously directed behaviors is evidence of consciousness in other species because it is a reference relatable to the experience within our capacity to fully understanding. We should try to remain on topic and not be distracted by comments meant to convey my thoughts on the impossibility of knowing another species entirely.
  14. If I understand correctly, you think all animals (humans included) follow genetically programmed responses of which processes of thought are also included. If that's true, then I disagree. The distinction between an organism that engages thought--as an indication of consciousness--and one that only engages instinct is shown by the organism that demonstrates a capacity to override its programmed responses. Viruses, for example, may mutate but do not have the capacity to override their programmed survival drive to infect the human body. When viruses mutate, that mutation isn't a result of thoughtful consideration but is instead a result of biology and evolution itself where the strongest organism among a multitude of rapidly producing organisms survives in the hostile environment that is the human body. Indeed, humans are generally programmed to think, while many organisms do not appear to have that programming. Thought is what enables humanity's ability to override it programming and rise above all other species and organism. The way we distinguish those animals that do not appear capable of thought is by their inability to engage behaviors that override their programming. Our definitions define our understanding, which we gain most effectively by experience and, to my knowledge, we may only gain that experience through life as human beings. For example, we may experience what a horse does but not what it is because we are not horses. What horses do does not define their internal life, if such a life exists. Assessing that internal life requires references we can identify. Those references must be relatable to experience we as humans understand. Human experience is the only experience we're fully capable of understanding because of the shared nature of human physiology, psychology, and biology. Indeed, humans are not the center of the universe; however, our understanding of that universe relies on references emerging from our very human experiences here on earth.
  15. I do not know you sir or madam and neither did I intend to either directly or indirectly insult you. I noticed the quote by MP, which ended with "snuffed it", at the bottom of zapatos' most recent comments here and found it elaborately humorous. I perceived this quote as a cleaver diversion that was in no way a slight against you as you now imagine. So, geez, relax!
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