Dualism versus materialism (Identity)

by dhw, Thursday, July 20, 2017, 11:34 (32 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: Was your material testosterone in charge, or your immaterial will?
DAVID: My immaterial will/self/consciousness. My material body will have automatic responses I can override.

Thank you. Then I presume you are now withdrawing your comment that your material self is in charge of running your immaterial self.

dhw: Did your decision (to resist or to give in to your lust) depend on your immaterial will or not? If it did, does that not mean that the material self provided the information and the immaterial self took the decision (one way or the other), i.e. was in charge?
DAVID: My immaterial self.

As above.

Dhw: …do you believe that the material brain is the SOURCE of your ideas, thoughts, emotions, will etc. (materialism) or that the stem from your immaterial conscious self or “soul” (dualism)?
DAVID: They stem from my immaterial conscious self. I thought I'd been clear about that.
dhw: You had, but since your views change from day to day, I needed confirmation. If ideas etc. stem from your immaterial conscious self or “soul”, it is clearly contradictory to claim that beings could not come up with new ideas without an increase in the size of the brain. If you believe in dualism, it has to be the ideas first and the growth of the brain in response to the need for new actions to implement those ideas.
DAVID: The artifacts found with each stage of human development show advances in thought which at the same time is evidenced by a larger brain being present. You do not want to accept the logic of those findings. The artifacts must necessarily appear after the arrival of the larger brained hominin who then thought of the m ore complex artifacts.

Of course I accept the logic of those findings! What I do not accept is the illogicality of your belief that the “soul” produced the new ideas, but the new ideas were not possible without the enlarged brain! If you are right, then the only logical explanation is that the large brain was needed to IMPLEMENT the new ideas, and so yes indeed the artifacts only appeared (as opposed to their being conceived) when the large brain arrived. Ideas first, large brain and implementation second.

DAVID: Habilis had hand used stone tools, not the spears of erectus. And the history of sapiens shows complex thought development in the past 50,000 years after existing for 250,000 prior years without much complexity appearing. That does not fit your scenario, especially since the brain shrinks as the thought complexity appears.

I am aware of the history, which does not in any way alter your own dualistic belief that the ideas came from the “soul” and not from the brain. Ideas first, large brain and implementation second, if your dualistic beliefs are correct. Large brain engendering new ideas if the materialists are correct. Shrinkage only appears after the brain has reached what appears to be its optimum size. That is why the illiterate women implemented the “new” idea of reading through densification, not through expansion.


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