Big brain evolution: changes in sapiens skull shape;addendum (Evolution)

by David Turell @, Thursday, February 22, 2018, 18:27 (292 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID: No, it is the area where the s/s/c can use the brain to make decisions. s/s/c and brain must be able to interface fully in each developed/developing area.

dhw: Just to clarify, which is essential if we are to reach an understanding: the s/s/c takes the decisions and it uses whichever part of the brain it needs to express or implement the decisions. That is how they interface in dualism, as you keep agreeing. And so the development of the pre-frontal cortex does not become “complete enough to make mature decisions” (which is what you wrote above) because according to your dualism it doesn’t make decisions.

DAVID: As above, the brain must be developed enough in the prefrontal area to allow all the attributes described for the s/s/c to act.

dhw: Yes. In other words, the brain has to have the requisite means to express and implement the thoughts/feelings/decisions etc. of the s/s/c. The plastic brain is the requisite means, and each new experience establishes the new connections.

Yes. We see initial developmental change and then plasticity changes.

DAVID: If the prefrontal area is not complete, the s/s/c cannot make fully adult judgments, because it must liaise with a fully functioning prefrontal cortex to do that. This supports my theory that brain complexity comes before complex thought is developed.

dhw: The prefrontal area is never “complete” so long as it is capable of new complexities! Please explain what you mean by “fully adult judgements”. You accept that the s/s/c does the thinking and the brain does the expressing and implementing. Once the implementation/ expression has been mastered, then of course the complexity is there for subsequent use, but cometh the next new concept, cometh the next new complexification. Thought comes before the brain change that implements/expresses it.

Agreed that there is development and then further complexification.


DAVID’s comment: I present this to show the illustrations which present different areas of the brain in the study the s/s/c must interact with. The s/s/c uses the brain as a tool.

dhw: Precisely: the s/s/c uses the brain (or different parts of the brain, and not just your favourite pre-frontal cortex) as a tool to express or implement its thoughts/concepts. And if the brain has not met with a particular concept before, it adjusts in order to implement the concept. It does not make the adjustment beforehand. And it does not stop implementing new concepts at the age of 25.

The prefrontal cortex happens to be the last part of the brain develop from birth.


TONY: So, we shouldn't allow people to be considered adults until 25?

dhw: I would take that two steps further: 1) we shouldn’t allow people to be considered responsible for their actions until 25? 2) If judgement depends on the “completion” of the pre-frontal cortex but, as Tony and I have pointed out, the pre-frontal cortex continues to complexify AFTER 25, then we shouldn’t allow people to be considered responsible for their actions at any age? Exit free will, exit responsibility, and adults who commit murder, rape etc. can blame their wretched pre-frontal cortex for their mature or immature judgement (apparently depending on age). Tony’s remaining posts highlight the general chaos of David’s materialistic dualism and the inadequacy of the tests with admirable clarity. (However, I hope eventually to continue my efforts to reconcile dualism and materialism!)

I must use materialism type science to study how the brain and the s/s/c combine. I have presented the science finding regarding age 25 and risk taking. All sorts of so-called brain impaired crimes are defended on that basis for no good reason I can see. I think at last you understand how I think the s/s/c and brain work together.


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