Immunity: detecting dangerous bacteria (Introduction)

by dhw, Wednesday, December 06, 2017, 13:07 (8 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: Yes, I see purpose in the fact that we exist. WE are a very improbable result of blind chance. As for panpsychism, it is an obvious nod to a universe that appears to have consciousness. And the question raised is where did that come from?

dhw: And since you believe in God, you try to read his mind to find his purpose. Camels, whales, ants and eagles are also an improbable result of blind chance. Atheistic panpsychism does indeed assume consciousness in the universe, as a rudimentary bottom-up and evolving form, while the God theory assumes consciousness as a supreme top-down know-it-all-from-the beginning form. The philosophical get-out answer to your question where it came from is “first cause”, which can be applied to either form.

DAVID: Which is a non-answer since first cause here is a blank slate. To me the presence of consciousness is critical, and demands an explanation, which cannot be found in the inorganic origin of the universe. Consciousness must require some sort of underlying organization since it must use a brain to appear, at least as we experience it.

I agree that the presence of consciousness is critical, but I don’t know what you mean by “here is a blank slate”. As I see it, the first cause is either eternal energy and matter forever forming new combinations and eventually producing one that has consciousness (chance), or energy and matter have always contained a rudimentary form of consciousness which has evolved (bottom-up atheistic panpsychism), or energy has always had total consciousness of itself and of everything needed to create a universe and life (top-down God). No "blank slates" here. NONE of these (for me equally incredible) hypothetical first causes require a brain. Consciousness as WE experience it does require a brain, unless the dualists are right, and we only require it to provide us with information and give material form to our thoughts so long as we have a body. Consciousness as bacteria may experience it does not require a brain, but if materialists are right, it does require an equivalent.

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