Introducing the brain: where the spiritual happens (Introduction)

by David Turell @, Thursday, June 14, 2018, 20:42 (182 days ago) @ dhw

dhw: On Sunday 10 June I summarized my understanding of dualism as follows:

dhw: Dualists like yourself normally believe that the two entities perform different FUNCTIONS in life, the soul being a “separate consciousness mechanism” which works with your body (brain), using the information your body supplies, and using the body (brain) to express or implement your thoughts. In death this same “separate consciousness mechanism” – your soul which has created the thoughts – survives and continues to create its thoughts, but now uses different methods (“operates by a different form”) to acquire information and to express/implement those thoughts. In life and in death the dualist’s soul remains the same “you”, performing the same function of thinking, feeling, remembering etc. That is the “static” element – you remain you.

DAVID: I can accept this.

What I accepted is primarily in bold. You have stated that 'the brain implements' but you don't interpret that as I do. My implementation involves the soul interlocked with the brain to produce new thought. In death you state the soul uses 'a different form' to express...thoughts'. But you don't mean what I mean.

dhw: Exactly. We have agreed over and over again that in death it must change its manner of observing and communicating, but if this “separate consciousness mechanism” (soul) now does its analyzing and responding (= thinking) without the brain circuits, and its “soul personality structure remains the same” (your words), what else changes? Why does anything else NEED to change, if the soul is already a “separate consciousness structure” which in both worlds uses and processes the information provided?

Because the living brain is run by me, and we know where, if not how, thought is manufactured, it seems obvious to me a soul interlocked with brain circuits, then uses those circuits to initiate/produce thought. since it can't do that in death it changes its mechanism to operate a a solo thought processor.


DAVID: In my theory the soul is an immaterial software working with the brain as hardware. I'm stating two parts, a true dualism.

Yes indeed: two separate entities working together, the immaterial software soul providing the programmes/thoughts and the material hardware brain implementing them. And in your latest post you offer a new analogy, which also illustrates precisely the description of dualism I have outlined above:

DAVID: […] I view me sitting at my computer to produce written thought in the same way as I visualize me using my brain to create thought. […]

dhw This time you (= your soul) think the thoughts, and you (your soul) use your computer (your brain) to produce the WRITTEN thought, i.e. to give material expression to your thoughts. You do not use the computer to “create” your thoughts – you use it to write them down.

It is just the same as me using my brain to produce thought which I 'hear' in my head.


DAVID: I keep saying the soul has the ability to change its functional mechanism between life and death. It requires/uses the brain in life to generate thought, but works on its own in death.

dhw: So when you sit at the computer to write down your thoughts, you (your soul) has not yet generated any thoughts for the computer to write down. Your soul (you) “uses the computer to generate” the thoughts.

In material form!!! But my soul has to use my brain to direct my fingers to respond appropriately as the thoughts in my brain appear!! Stop twisting the discussion.

dhw: And your soul (you) is only able to generate its own thoughts when you haven’t got a computer. I'll let you into a secret: I really and truly believe, David, that you are able to generate thoughts without a computer.

Silliness!!

dhw: And I'll go even further. If there's an afterlife, I reckon it'll be the same immaterial "you" thinking, remembering, feeling etc. as the immaterial "you" in life. No new "separate consciousness mechanism" required.

How do you know that so assuredly when we do not know how consciousness arises? Especially when you state taht without a brain the soul must operate by a different mechanism.


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