Introducing the brain (Introduction)

by dhw, Wednesday, June 13, 2018, 12:35 (184 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: Once more: You keep agreeing and then disagreeing that the dualist’s soul is “a separate conscious mechanism” which does the thinking and which remains itself after death, but which “uses the brain circuits in life” to acquire information and to express/implement its thoughts materially. This is not two forms of “ABILITY TO THINK”! There is one ability to think, and two different worlds in which it operates and therefore uses two different means of operation.

DAVID: The difference between us, from this statement, is you believe the soul has an independent thinking core mechanism that is unchanged in life and in afterlife, and I think it has to use the brain during life to think. That is what I have called a 'static' form of soul, the basis of your theory in all of our discussions. And why I have used the AM/FM radio as an analogy for my theory.

This is not what I believe, but it is the essence of dualism, as exemplified by your own statement that the immaterial soul is a separate consciousness mechanism which interlocks with the material brain, whose function you acknowledge to be the provision of information and the material expression/implementation of the soul’s thoughts. And you keep acknowledging that this same separate consciousness mechanism is what survives the death of the brain. Yes, in that sense, the separate consciousness mechanism is static, as it remains the same thinking, feeling, remembering self (which emphatically does NOT mean that it doesn’t learn and develop) . What is not static is the manner in which it observes and communicates without a brain in the immaterial world you believe in. (I’m afraid different radio signals don’t help me to understand why a piece of your God’s consciousness can’t think without a brain until there is no brain for it to think with.)

dhw: Your argument results in you now having the SAME piece of your God’s consciousness (i.e. the SAME ability to think, i.e. the SAME “separate conscious mechanism”) – which even returns to your God – unable to think without a brain but able to think without a brain, not separate from the brain but separate from the brain, dependent on the brain but not dependent on the brain.

DAVID: All part of being malleable in its function, which you don't accept.

It is malleable in its function of observing and communicating. But it is the same separate immaterial, THINKING part of the self in life and in death.

DAVID: We remain apart. A larger brain allows the soul to have more complex thought. It is possible God had the brain generate its own consciousness.

dhw: Thank you. That is the only way you can reconcile your dualism with your materialistic belief that the soul depends on the brain for its “more complex thought”.

DAVID: But having God cause the brain to generate its own consciousness is pure materialism, no vestige of true dualism, in which I think the brain and the consciousness are two separate entities that work together in life.

Yes, that is the true dualism which you profess to believe in except that you insist that the soul (the thinking part of the self) depends on the brain for its ability to THINK, and that makes you a materialist. (I have no objections to that. I object only to the inconsistency.)

DAVID: If the universal consciousness pervades all of the universe, it could easily automatically enter each new brain that appears.

I presume your God’s consciousness (which I would equate with the ability to think) doesn’t require a brain in order to do its thinking, so why does it need a brain to do its thinking when it easily automatically enters, but doesn’t need it when it easily automatically exits?


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