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Eise; We meet again.   So you think that Feynman knew what he was talking about? Then why did he have such contempt for Philosophy? After I realized how brilliant he was,, I wondered

I'll be generous and let you in on a little secret about Magnetism;   Length of Verse = 14.65 billion light years Time until our Magnetic Cage fully formed = 78,000 years(Earth Years)

Kindly summarize Benjamin Franklin's contribution to the discipline of Philosophy. Also note that strangely, pretty much everyone reading your and Eise's post side by side, comes to the conclusio

Bender;

 

On ‎5‎/‎10‎/‎2018 at 4:14 PM, Bender said:

I completely agree, which is why I think equating chemical reactions to consciousness  (and thus to God, as Gees suggested; and to get back on topic), is pretty silly.

Well, we know that hormones (chemicals) cause emotion and that emotion causes the production of hormones (chemicals).

So is emotion part of consciousness? Yes. Emotion is the mover and shaker that is the motivator in life, which would be why we named it e-motion.

Emotion works through the unconscious aspect of mind, so we don't actually know it, we experience it. You have to study a little psychology in order to understand the unconscious aspect of mind, but if you do, you will find that emotion rules there and emotion has to be interpreted to be known.

"God" ideas come from the unconscious aspect of mind. This is a really simple straight forward idea.

Since you do not really study consciousness, maybe I can present this in a way you can understand. Think of the chemicals, hormones, as magnets and think of consciousness, emotion, as the force that is between the magnet and a piece of iron.

 

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I also agree with Koti's earlier remark that there is nothing particularly special or interesting about consciousness.

This is priceless.

Some of the greatest minds in human history from well before the time of Plato to after the time of Einstein have grappled with the idea of consciousness. But you and Koti find that it is not very interesting or special. 

Obviously you must be right. 

Gee
 

Migl;

 

56 minutes ago, MigL said:

Reincarnation ? Really ????

Sure. If it has anything to do with life and consciousness, I have either investigated it or I want to.

I think that all Religions have some explanation for life after death, whether it is heaven or hell, or reincarnation.

 

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But a toaster, with AI, as a life form, is too far fetched ?

Absolutely. When Biology confirms that an AI toaster is a life form, then I will consider it. I did not come to a Science forum to speculate. I need some kind of evidence or fact.

Gee

 

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But you will consider reincarnation ?

Please list the  'evidence or fact' that satisfied your need and allows you to consider reincarnation.

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1 hour ago, Gees said:

This is priceless.

Some of the greatest minds in human history from well before the time of Plato to after the time of Einstein have grappled with the idea of consciousness. But you and Koti find that it is not very interesting or special. 

Obviously you must be right. 

So what do you think is so special about consciousness that calls for endless debates on it? I’m by no means a great mind but the way I see it, is that our brain capacity advantage in comparison with other species makes us so full of ourselves that we decided that we’re special because consciousness... to a point that some of us decided that other species are conscious too and that consciousness is somehow relevant to nature. Its not, not in any remote way other than like any other advantage a species has which is ofcourse completely insignificant on the cosmic scale. The fact that I can learn relativity or use sarcasm or ask philosophical questions about the meaning of life or do any other things that other species can’t, makes me feel lucky not special. Consciousness is a set of mental traits that we humans have which some of us insist on being glorified. I don’t think that our minds should be glorified in this way...we humans should be proud of our achievements and abilities but glorifying consciousness is just being a dick. 

Besides of what has already been stated in this thread about what a god is - god is also a product of people needlessly glorifying their place in nature. 

Edited by koti
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5 hours ago, Gees said:

When Biology confirms that an AI toaster is a life form, then I will consider it. I did not come to a Science forum to speculate. I need some kind of evidence or fact.

We are discussing consciousness, not life. Equating consciousness to life is redundant, because we already have a word for that: "life".

5 hours ago, Gees said:

Some of the greatest minds in human history from well before the time of Plato to after the time of Einstein have grappled with the idea of consciousness. But you and Koti find that it is not very interesting or special.

You could say the same about God. In absence of evidence, I see no reason to assume consciousness is in any way special; nor unachievable by nonliving computers.

Besides, the ancient Greek philosophers had all kind of funny ideas, and Einstein rejected  the big bang and quantum uncertainty because of his philosophical ideas. Are you also going to refer to Freud in a discussion about the Higgs boson?

5 hours ago, Gees said:

"God" ideas come from the unconscious aspect of mind. This is a really simple straight forward idea.

The God idea: yes (although I'm not convinced of the unconscious part).

A toaster also comes from the human mind. That doesn't mean a toaster is consciousness. (I'm really starting to like toasters, the towel of philosophical discussions)

6 hours ago, Gees said:

Since you do not really study consciousness, maybe I can present this in a way you can understand. Think of the chemicals, hormones, as magnets and think of consciousness, emotion, as the force that is between the magnet and a piece of iron.

I can do analogies too. Think of the temperature sensor and timer as magnets and the electrical current in the wiring as the force.

Or another analogy : think of consciousness as the operating system organising low-level processes and emotions as user profile settings 

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Hello iNow, My thoughts (as worthless as they are) are that life/consciousness is a property of intricate systems that are natural processes within and by the universe.

A device is a fabrication made by Man (or other life) that completes a function.

A man-made toaster, regardless of how many functions it has, even if it had AI and self replicating nanites to create copies of itself, is still a device of men and not life/consciousness as generated by the propensity of this universe, in my humble opinion. And equating the two is kind of diverting the topic & not what Gees was referring to (although I can be wrong!).

I would like to apologise as the post I down voted didn’t actually deserve it as it was 100% true; toasters do react to their environment in all the ways you suggest, as every inanimate object does; passively. It is just that you seem to be overseeing that Life/consciousness reacts and also acts; the compliment to passivity which is activity. Yes, we can ascribe the quality of toasting bread as an activity but this is a design of men, and it would not happen without actual life (us) making it so, whereas the universe just creates it naturally. That is the quality that I think Gees is referring to.

I am new here and second apology is coming up; sorry if I have overstepped the mark; I was down voting the direction of the content, not the person. I will check the protocol for using the vote system in future!

Edited by Scott of the Antares
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14 hours ago, koti said:

 The fact that I can learn relativity or use sarcasm or ask philosophical questions about the meaning of life or do any other things that other species can’t, makes me feel lucky not special.

It is all relative though isn't it? If stranded in the woods during a snow storm sarcasm and relativity wouldn't be lucky as lots of bodyfat and hair. I agree that we humans are pretentious creatures that massively over values our attributes. Ironically our adoration for our cognitive abilities actually illustrates the limitations of it. Internal perspective filters all data in our minds.

15 hours ago, Gees said:

Since you do not really study consciousness, maybe I can present this in a way you can understand. Think of the chemicals, hormones, as magnets and think of consciousness, emotion, as the force that is between the magnet and a piece of iron.

That force is the magnet's field and not its own independent thing. Likewise conscious is electrochemical reactions cause by the chemistry in the brain. Whether one chooses to label the reaction conscious, unconscious, subconscious, Id, ego, superego, third eye, sixth sense, or etc is all rather superfluous far as the process works. It is all electrochemical and and we are more self aware of certain portions of what we are experiencing. All humans I not identical in this. Different parts of the brain can be over or under developed, people can have chemical imbalances, brain injuries, and etc which alters the chemistry and way consciousness is perceived. You say God is unconscious. If a person is schizophrenic and believes that are audibly hearing the voice of God is that unconscious as well? Are hallucinations brought about during physical stress unconscious?

15 hours ago, Gees said:

Some of the greatest minds in human history from well before the time of Plato to after the time of Einstein have grappled with the idea of consciousness. But you and Koti find that it is not very interesting or special. 

Humans are not monoliths. History is full of people who were brilliant is various disciplines yet average or flawed in others. It is not safe to just assume everything Einstein thought was meaningful or holds some yet to be discovered secret. Michael Jordan was one of the greatest athletes to ever live yet from all reports is below average at predicting athletic outcomes. Jordan is rather notorious for losing sports bets. 

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1 hour ago, Scott of the Antares said:

Hello iNow, My thoughts (as worthless as they are) are that life/consciousness is a property of intricate systems that are natural processes within and by the universe.

A device is a fabrication made by Man (or other life) that completes a function.

A man-made toaster, regardless of how many functions it has, even if it had AI and self replicating nanites to create copies of itself, is still a device of men and not life/consciousness as generated by the propensity of this universe, in my humble opinion. And equating the two is kind of diverting the topic & not what Gees was referring to (although I can be wrong!).

I would like to apologise as the post I down voted didn’t actually deserve it as it was 100% true; toasters do react to their environment in all the ways you suggest, as every inanimate object does; passively. It is just that you seem to be overseeing that Life/consciousness reacts and also acts; the compliment to passivity which is activity. Yes, we can ascribe the quality of toasting bread as an activity but this is a design of men, and it would not happen without actual life (us) making it so, whereas the universe just creates it naturally. That is the quality that I think Gees is referring to.

I am new here and second apology is coming up; sorry if I have overstepped the mark; I was down voting the direction of the content, not the person. I will check the protocol for using the vote system in future!

Downvotes are for ad hominem attacks, derogatory remarks, poor sportsmanship, particularly bad science and argumentation, arrogance...

It's generally not done to give bad rep simply for disagreeing with someone. Not even if they made a mistake  (except if they are persistent and or arrogant about their mistakes).

About your thoughts: why do you equate consciousness to life? Why can a nonliving object not be conscious? Do you also think all life is conscious?

Edited by Bender
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50 minutes ago, Bender said:

About your thoughts: why do you equate consciousness to life?

I was assuming here. As a layman I would personally say that life has consciousness and vice versa. This may be wrong.

49 minutes ago, Bender said:

Why can a nonliving object not be conscious?

Maybe it can and maybe it cannot, I do not know! If you are postulating that consciousness can reside within what we class as inanimate objects, then that sounds a bit like the Japanese system of Shinto to me (not that I have anything against that untestable idea).

52 minutes ago, Bender said:

Do you also think all life is conscious?

Yes.

What are your thoughts on the same questions? :)

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1 hour ago, Scott of the Antares said:

Maybe it can and maybe it cannot, I do not know! If you are postulating that consciousness can reside within what we class as inanimate objects, then that sounds a bit like the Japanese system of Shinto to me (not that I have anything against that untestable idea).

It has nothing to do with Shinto. I'm referring to sufficiently advanced computers. Since there is no reason to assume consciousness is nothing but an emergent property of biochemical interactions, I also see no reason to assume electronic interactions cannot have the same emergent property.

1 hour ago, Scott of the Antares said:

Yes.

As I already stated in this thread, I think that bacteria, which I consider to be alive, are no more conscious than my toaster. While there are many vague definitions of consciousness, I also think it is silly to say bacteria have it, since it would degrade the concept to meaninglessness.

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On ‎5‎/‎12‎/‎2018 at 9:42 PM, MigL said:

But you will consider reincarnation ?

Please list the  'evidence or fact' that satisfied your need and allows you to consider reincarnation.

MigL;

Just as Biology studies life forms, Science is the Discipline that studies all matter, forces, and causal reality. But Science does not study spirituality. Religion is the Discipline that studies spirituality. These are facts.

So if you are looking for evidence of heaven, hell, or reincarnation, you go to Religion. Psychology can also give information, but in the case of reincarnation, there is also information from Dr. Ian Stevenson, who studied reincarnation for many years. You can look him up in Wiki, but the last time I checked Wiki had one of Dr. Stevenson's admittedly less than convincing examples, but someone deleted his more impressive evidence. If you go to the bottom of the page in Wiki, there should be a link to the University of Virginia, or maybe it is Duke University, where there is more information.

Gee

 

Koti;

 

23 hours ago, koti said:

So what do you think is so special about consciousness that calls for endless debates on it? 

Consciousness is everything you know, everything you feel, all of your memories and past experiences, everyone you love, even your sense of self -- that makes it kind of special. Did you ever see the Matrix? The plug that was put into the back of a person's head could be called consciousness. Or maybe it was the pill -- the red one or the blue one.

The endless debates are not really about consciousness. They represent a 1,000 year old struggle regarding Monism v Dualism, which is really a political power struggle regarding "Who's the Boss" -- "God" or man.

 

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I’m by no means a great mind but the way I see it, is that our brain capacity advantage in comparison with other species makes us so full of ourselves that we decided that we’re special because consciousness... to a point that some of us decided that other species are conscious too and that consciousness is somehow relevant to nature. Its not, not in any remote way other than like any other advantage a species has which is ofcourse completely insignificant on the cosmic scale. The fact that I can learn relativity or use sarcasm or ask philosophical questions about the meaning of life or do any other things that other species can’t, makes me feel lucky not special. Consciousness is a set of mental traits that we humans have which some of us insist on being glorified. I don’t think that our minds should be glorified in this way...we humans should be proud of our achievements and abilities but glorifying consciousness is just being a dick. 

You have a lot to say about something that you clearly don't understand.

 

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Besides of what has already been stated in this thread about what a god is - god is also a product of people needlessly glorifying their place in nature. 

This statement has a lot of truth in it, but it is not really about "God". It is about Religion.

Gee

PS  Sorry about the double post. MS (Multiple Sclerosis) is not being nice today and my fingers are not terribly obedient. I will report the post and see if it can be deleted.

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Bender;

 

19 hours ago, Bender said:

We are discussing consciousness, not life. Equating consciousness to life is redundant, because we already have a word for that: "life".

You could say the same about God. In absence of evidence, I see no reason to assume consciousness is in any way special; nor unachievable by nonliving computers.

No we are not discussing consciousness. I would like to, but first it seems that I must get past the denials. Why don't you go to the Philosophy forum, type in the title, Monism v Dualism, and write a thread that questions WTF consciousness actually is? If you figure it out, then we can discuss consciousness.

 

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Besides, the ancient Greek philosophers had all kind of funny ideas, and Einstein rejected  the big bang and quantum uncertainty because of his philosophical ideas. Are you also going to refer to Freud in a discussion about the Higgs boson?

Well if you can get a toaster to be conscious and maybe worship a toaster "God" (keeping in context with this thread), then I could probably link Freud to the Higgs boson. Why not? There seems to be no requirement to make sense in this thread.

 

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The God idea: yes (although I'm not convinced of the unconscious part).

Should we notify Neurology, Psychiatry, and Psychology that the unconscious is a myth?
 

Quote

 

A toaster also comes from the human mind. That doesn't mean a toaster is consciousness. (I'm really starting to like toasters, the towel of philosophical discussions)

I can do analogies too. Think of the temperature sensor and timer as magnets and the electrical current in the wiring as the force.

Or another analogy : think of consciousness as the operating system organising low-level processes and emotions as user profile settings 

 

All of the above need an electrical source in order to function. What empowers life? Life does not go around with battery packs, so what empowers it? As far as we know, the empowerment is consciousness. Technically, if you could make AI conscious, it would no longer need a power source.

Gee

 

Prometheus;

 

12 hours ago, Prometheus said:

Just letting you know how you come across to me since it seemed to concern you. Do what you will with the observation.

Well,, thank you for being honest. You might want to get to know me a little better before you are honest again.

Gee

 

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20 minutes ago, Gees said:

All of the above need an electrical source in order to function. What empowers life? Life does not go around with battery packs, so what empowers it? As far as we know, the empowerment is consciousness. Technically, if you could make AI conscious, it would no longer need a power source.

Food

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On 4/30/2018 at 10:41 PM, Gees said:

There is a documentary video floating around the forum where Feynman tries to explain magnets. He states that he can give an easy answer, but it won't give any real understanding. Then he explains that in order to really understand it, you would have to study physics and probably be one of his students.

What is the difference in what I said and what he said?

That we know that Feynman really understands what he is talking about, because he was in the discursive network of physicists that were working on similar theories, that these theories were confirmed by experiments etc etc. From you we only know that you say you are a philosopher. But philosophy is, as science, not just a collection of knowledge, of justified beliefs, but it is also a way of thinking that has to be learned and trained. Without teachers and colleagues to confront your way of thinking and your ideas you will have a very high barrier to really become a philosopher. Therefore I take your claim that you are a philosopher with a huge crystal of salt.

The topics you are engaged in are definitely philosophical topics. But philosophy is not just the contents, as science is not just its content, but also a praxis of critical thinking. But what I see when I read your posts is a lot of ideological thinking. You pick the ideas from philosophical (and non-philosophical!) discourse on basis of what you like, not based on ideas that can withstand rational scrutiny.

I am also irritated by your snootiness, as is iNow, that you know better than everyone here what consciousness is, because you have studied it, and therefore are a philosopher. 

On 5/8/2018 at 5:51 AM, Gees said:

The medical definition of 'consciousness' is different from the philosophical definition.

I don't know what the philosophical definition is. It surely is not the same as 'life', as you seem to propose. Consciousness is not simply reacting at stimuli. A thermostat is also reacting at stimuli, but surely it is not conscious. So I can understand Bender when he brings in the example of a toaster, even if it might not be the best counter example.

On 4/30/2018 at 10:41 PM, Gees said:

I limit my understanding of consciousness to life forms. I know that there are other theories, but I can not study everything.

It is obvious you did not study everything. Otherwise you would have found dozens of arguments against your views. That does not mean that all these arguments are correct. But a good philosopher is aware of them, and in developing his/hers own ideas, discusses them, and argues why they are correct or not. Normally, studying philosophy at a university helps, because you will be confronted by counter arguments, or pointed at authors that have good arguments pro or contra the ideas you would like to present.

On 5/1/2018 at 8:36 AM, Bender said:

Religion is the Discipline that studies emotion; "God" is what we call it.

And I thought psychology is the discipline that studies emotion. And who is 'we'? 

On 5/3/2018 at 8:41 PM, Gees said:

we can grow a cell from another cell, or manipulate the DNA in a cell, or clone a cell, or kill a cell, but we can not make a cell from something inanimate. We can not imbue it with the awareness that it needs to make itself continue -- consciousness.

I have very much something against equating consciousness with life and the capability 'to continue'. 

I've studied this many years, so I cannot suppose you understand this immediately, because I am an academic trained philosopher, and you are not. :unsure: 

How does feel such an argument to you? It is not a valid argument, of course. It is a way to avoid really discussing of one's ideas.

On 5/8/2018 at 5:51 AM, Gees said:

All life has a specific characteristic that causes it to work at it's own continuance -- we call this consciousness. It is unique in that it does not only ignore entropy, it seems to reverse it.

Except that you equate consciousness with life again, your entropy remark is beside the point. It is true that life opposes entropy, but it does so by using energy and increasing the entropy in the rest of the universe. The decrease in entropy is only local. Life is per definition not a closed system, and the law of entropy is only valid for closed systems.

In reviewing Dr. Ian Stevenson's work on reincarnation, I noted that he found an average of 15 months between incarnations.

Dr. Ian Stevenson? Really?

On 5/13/2018 at 1:14 AM, Gees said:

How do we know they work at their continuance? Because they show evidence of survival instincts.

That is misuse of the word 'instinct' (bold by me): 

Quote

Instinct or innate behavior is the inherent inclination of a living organism towards a particular complex behavior. 

On 5/13/2018 at 1:14 AM, Gees said:

How do survival instincts work? All survival instincts work through feeling or emotion.

Possibly, yes. But to experience feelings and emotions, it needs a complex information processing, a complexity so far we know, is only realised in nature by complex nervous systems. Bacteria do not have such systems.

On 5/13/2018 at 3:13 AM, Gees said:

I think that all Religions have some explanation for life after death, whether it is heaven or hell, or reincarnation.

Well, I would say some religions have ideas about life after death. But religions are not science, so that's it. Having ideas. No empirically proven explanations of something that only exists in our ideas. 

6 hours ago, Gees said:

But Science does not study spirituality. Religion is the Discipline that studies spirituality. These are facts.

So if you are looking for evidence of heaven, hell, or reincarnation, you go to Religion.

As said, religion is not science, and therefore has nothing to say about these topics, except nice ideas. And that spirituality is not studied in science is not true. The earliest work I read (there might be older one) to put the scientific research on spirituality on a scientific track was Exploring Mysticism. A Methodological Essay (1975) by Frits Staal.

6 hours ago, Gees said:

So if you are looking for evidence of heaven, hell, or reincarnation, you go to Religion

'Evidence'? Really? I think you should say support. Nothing more.

 

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6 hours ago, Gees said:

Technically, if you could make AI conscious, it would no longer need a power source.

What!?

Technically, this is nonsense.

Humans are conscious and yet we still continue to need a regular source of energy.

 

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8 hours ago, Gees said:

You have a lot to say about something that you clearly don't understand.

I can agree with that to a degree. I haven’t studied consciousness and I’m not planning to, I wouldn’t want to end up stating something as ridiculous as this:

7 hours ago, Gees said:

Technically, if you could make AI conscious, it would no longer need a power source.

 

 

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30 minutes ago, koti said:

I haven’t studied consciousness and I’m not planning to, I wouldn’t want to end up stating something as ridiculous as this

Well, consciousness was part of my academic study in philosophy, and it did not lead to such nonsense. If one wants to explain the role of consciousness in animals (human and non-human), I think it would be something like a 'coordination-centre'. But definitely not a power source. Why, the brain uses about 20% of all the energy we take in. And that for an organ that only makes about 2% of our weight.

So you can safely study consciousness at the philosophy department. But be prepared that you often must distinguish between different meanings in equal words. :rolleyes: See what I mean?

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5 hours ago, Gees said:

Agreed. And what is food? Water and other life. Life feeds on life.

Gee

Sorry, Gee, I know how tetchy you are about neg reps, but I couldn't leave this post as +1, it would be so misleading.

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2 minutes ago, Scott of the Antares said:

Would you explain why this is misleading please? :)

Sure, it's misleading in two ways:

1. Bacteria are alive but their food doesn't have to be. 

2. A virus is not alive but it can only consume the living. 

 

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