Dualism versus materialism (Identity)

by dhw, Sunday, July 23, 2017, 09:37 (484 days ago) @ David Turell

Dhw: …as a dualist you believe that the ideas are the product of the “soul” and not the larger brain, so the larger brain is NOT required for the ideas.
DAVID: Yes it is. You keep skipping over my concept that my soul uses a larger brain which has an increased capacity for conceptual thought

Dhw: I had better repeat that I am not taking sides in the dualism versus materialism debate, but am merely pointing out the illogicality of your arguments. What do you mean by the brain having a “capacity” for conceptual thought? Does it produce the ideas or not? ... That is why I have offered you quite specific ways in which the soul can “use” the brain: i.e. for the acquisition of information, and for the material implementation of its ideas. What other “use” of the brain can your thinking soul come up with?

DAVID: Of course my soul uses my brain for acquiring information and experiences, making my body move, and developing new ideas and concepts, both material and immaterial results.

You claimed that “if the artifacts appear after the brain is larger, then a larger brain is required for those ideas.” (My bold) But you are unable to think of any other “uses” of the brain than those I have given, and you keep confirming that ideas are the product of the “soul”. It is therefore as clear as daylight that a larger brain is NOT required for those ideas, but is only required for their implementation. Hence my proposal of ideas first, implementation and larger brain second, as in the illiterate women’s “idea” of reading first, implementation and rewiring second.

DAVID: Your entire concept is total backward from a logical view of what happened. Your muscle analogy is totally off the point of phenotypic changes. Muscles exist and therefor respond to exercise. That has nothing to do with new body forms appearing! Note that apes do some upright walking but have never changed for 8 million years. Organisms cannot wish new advances to appear, which is your proposal. I view my theory as an obvious fact.

dhw: I have stuck to your own examples of bipedalism, pre-whales, pre-land-dwellers, and the brain, all of which entail the transformation of EXISTING forms – which is the whole principle of common descent – into new forms (or in the case of the brain, a more complex form). As regards apes not changing, of course not all tree-dwellers descended to the plains, and not all anthropoids turned into humans, and not all land-dwellers entered the water to become whales, and not all fish stepped onto the land. I find it perfectly logical, however, that these respective transformations came about as existing organisms' responses to the "exercise" of coping with or exploiting new conditions, but if you think it is an "obvious fact" that your God restructured these existing forms BEFORE they entered their new environments, so be it.

DAVID: I presume end of discussion.

Except that you had dismissed my muscle analogy on the grounds that muscles already exist, and I pointed out that in your own examples legs, fins and brains already existed too. Just as muscles respond to exercise, I propose that legs, fins and brains respond to new uses under new conditions. Do you now accept the logic of that argument, even if you still adhere to your own theory?

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