Dualism versus materialism (Identity)

by David Turell @, Friday, August 11, 2017, 16:11 (123 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID’s comment: H. sapiens wandered all over the globe. Note my bold. Our brain's special capacity is the cause. Our closest cousins, the Neanderthals, did not wander. Their brains were bigger but less complex (it is assumed). Size and complexity of brain dictates what a species will develop. Size and complexity first, use second. It is so obvious.

I thought we had settled this under “Dualism versus materialism”, to which I am reassigning these posts. ...It is simply illogical to believe that “you”/your soul can survive the death of the brain if the brain is the source of the thoughts that make the immaterial “you”. (Once again I should emphasize that I am not taking sides, but only trying to unravel the knots in your own dualistic arguments.)

There are no knots. We settled this. It is obvious the soul uses the brain as an instrument. I am discussing the attributes of the instrument and what can be done with it by the soul.


dhw: Yes of course the brain has to be plastic in order to implement the new concepts. (Pre-) Heidelbergus and (pre-)Neanderthals also had plastic brains, and these would have expanded or complexified in order to implement the new ideas, but (pre-)Sapiens had bigger and better ideas, and therefore they needed bigger and better or more complex brains to implement them.

You are forgetting gaps. You are using Darwinian thinking again. The hominin fossil evidence shows each time a new species appears its brain size is 200 cc bigger, and more than likely has a higher complexity of its neurons and connections. That larger brain allows for more advanced ideation and more advanced artifacts to prove the point.

dhw:So please make up your mind: are you a materialist (the brain is the source of thought) or a dualist (the “soul” is the source of thought)? If the "soul" is the source, it needs brain expansion or complexification to implement its ideas, and as is proven by the case of the illiterate women, complexification results from the effort to read. The complexification does not precede the implementation, and so apparently your God did not rewire the women’s brains beforehand so that they could read. There is therefore a clear sequence: idea, effort to implement idea, resulting in expansion/complexification.

Stop beating a dead horse. Sapiens brains appeared 300,000 years ago, no larger than Neanderthal, in fact smaller, implying more complexity on board, as shown by sapiens accomplishments compared to Neanderthal all living in competition. The woman you refer to are using an existing brain of specific size and complexity. They learn to read which results in known shrinkage in size and increase in complexity of an already existing brain size and advanced connectivity of more neurons. Your example is a total nonsequitor to our discussion of what causes 200 cc jumps in brain size.


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