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

by dhw, Saturday, February 24, 2018, 12:22 (295 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: You say you are a dualist and believe in the existence of the “soul”. So why do you continue to cling to neuroscience which is confined to what is material? The articles you quote always cover activities in the brain. They cannot tell us whether those activities CAUSE our immaterial attributes or respond to them.
DAVID: The only studies available to tell us where different parts of our conscious thinking resides is from methodological materialist scientists. Your point is obvious.

“Resides” is an interesting concept. I hope it means that neuroscience shows us which parts of the brain are associated with which activities, but I thought we knew that long ago. My “obvious” point is that if, as you claim, the brain is only a RECEIVER of thought, you cannot use the findings of neurologists as evidence that the soul depends on a functioning material brain for its ability to THINK. (NDEs are used by dualists as evidence that it does not.) Once more: for a dualist the s/s/c does the thinking and the brain provides information and expresses/implements the thought. You keep agreeing and then trying to disagree.

DAVID: Agreed that there is development and then further complexification.
dhw: But material development itself has initially come about through the need for expression/implementation. It’s an on-going process: immaterial thought/concepts etc. (whether complex or not) come before material change – the exact opposite of your theory that brain complexity comes before complex thought/concepts etc.
DAVID: I have a different view: the human brain development is part of the embryology leading to an adult form from birth. At an average 25 that development is complete. As above, of course the prefrontal area responds to the rest of one's life and modifies.

I have pointed out to you that expression/implementation of immaterial thought CAUSES changes in the material brain (disregarding material changes caused by external influences such as disease, drugs etc., which are evidence for materialism) – the exact opposite of your theory that changes in the brain PRECEDE immaterial thought. You reply by telling me that the development of the brain is complete by 25, although it continues to change. This is a contradiction in terms, and it has nothing whatsoever to do with the argument you say you disagree with!

dhw: …you who keep insisting that thought depends on a fully functioning pre-frontal cortex. If you now agree that the s/s/c does the thinking, the brain provides information and expresses/implements the thoughts of the s/s/c, the brain changes as a result of implementing the concepts, wishes, emotions, ideas etc. of the s/s/c, thought therefore comes before brain change, and consequently it is absurd for a dualist to argue that the brain has to expand before the s/s/c can THINK new thoughts, then we will have agreed on how the s/s/c and the brain work together.

DAVID: We will never be together on this point. The brain provides the substrate or mechanics for thought. s/s/c is the immaterial software.

More obfuscation. The “mechanics for thought” could mean that the brain is the mechanism enabling thought or the mechanism used by thought to implement itself. Why do you keep changing the terms, when you have already agreed so many times that the s/s/c is the source of thought, and the brain provides information and expresses/implements the thoughts of the s/s/c. The latter is the software (thought) and the brain is the hardware (implementation). The rest follows as I have explained above, which I would ask you to reread. We will never be together on this point so long as you keep trying to avoid the implications of your own beliefs.


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