Natures wonders: ant nest building (Introduction)

by dhw, Friday, January 22, 2016, 18:19 (1625 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: Shapiro is referring to simple epigenetic effects in comparison which do occur at those simple effects by a series of molecular reactions.

dhw: The quote was as follows:
Natasha Mitchell: I mean many would argue that even a basic nervous system is a prerequisite for cognition, and it's been a controversial suggestion, hasn't it, that bacteria are somehow cognitive. Why the controversy?
James Shapiro: Large organisms chauvinism, so we like to think that only we can do things in a cognitive way.

Link that to Shapiro's statement: “Living cells and organisms are cognitive (sentient) entities that act and interact purposefully to ensure survival, growth and proliferation. They possess corresponding sensory, communication, information-processing, and decision-making abilities.” I'm not asking you to agree with him, but I really don't see how you can avoid acknowledging that he believes cells and organisms have minds of their own.

DAVID: Same answer: They can be DNA programmed so it looks like they have minds of their own. Those abilities of theirs do exist, but how it works can be in two ways, yours and mine.

I was pointing out that Shapiro seems to be on my side rather than yours. However, this is a fair acknowledgement which should end once and for all the dogmatic statements that these organisms are automatons. They only might be.

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