Dualism versus materialism; amygdala evidence (Identity)

by dhw, Tuesday, August 22, 2017, 08:55 (63 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: [...] Your concept of my theory that somehow the brain receives emotions is way off the mark.


DAVID: Emotions Are not just 'feelings'. They also involve bodily reactions as we agree.

Bodily reactions are not emotions. They are the result of emotions, or they may cause emotions, as you indicate below. Perhaps we need to be careful with the word “feeling”. My body feels the cold. That is not an emotion. But when we say “You have hurt my feelings” we do not mean the body.

DAVID: If the soul uses the brain to create the feelings of emotion, the brain is more than a receiver, but a participant in the whole process inducing bodily reactions. For example, a startle response is a unexpected sensory reaction, which the soul did not initiate but recognizes. I think there can be some back and forth between brain and soul at these physical levels. This is not at the immaterial level of thinking and concepts.

Of course the brain is a participant in the “whole process”. In your dualistic world, it provides the information to the soul and it gives material expression to the immaterial thoughts of the soul. That is the “back and forth” that you keep agreeing on and then forgetting. The unexpected sensory experience is the information, but it’s not the body that feels the emotion of fear. After the body sends the information, it responds to the soul’s fear. All virtually instantaneous, and a materialist would argue that since there is no soul, it’s all material anyway. The soul (if it exists) is not confined to concepts: it must also be the seat of emotions and of all the immaterial attributes that makes us who we are. How else could you survive the death of the body and still be yourself? This is the great dichotomy in your whole concept of the relationship between brain and soul. You are a dualist who wants the brain to produce immaterial thought (e.g. the IDEA of the spear, which like a good materialist you insist is not possible without the larger brain).

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