A THEORY OF INTELLIGENCE Part Two; addendum (Identity)

by dhw, Thursday, July 26, 2018, 12:49 (141 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: I did not say my brain creates thoughts on its own. I/soul use my brain to create thoughts, and you know it.

dhw: You keep repeating the mantra “the soul uses the brain to think”, but you can never add any uses beyond those of information and material expression.

DAVID: I'll repeat it again. My soul is me. I know that I create thought in life by using the brain networks. Therefore the soul uses the brain networks to create its/my thoughts. Why do you try to separate your soul from you?

I don’t. I keep asking you the same question! And I also keep asking you what other “uses” the soul makes of the brain besides information and material expression. And then you tell me that “thought is created by electrical activity in the brain”, and the waves are translated into English by the soul, although elsewhere you have told me that the English-speaking soul initiates the thoughts and the brain makes no contribution.

DAVID: The first point is we know consciousness arises from electric currents made from ions running around brain networks.

dhw:That is materialism, and fits the first part of my theory, the theistic version being that your God created this mechanism. However, in another of your theories, the soul is a piece of God’s consciousness. I doubt if God’s consciousness arises from electric currents made from ions running round brain networks, so why can’t your God’s consciousness be conscious in life and in death?

DAVID: My brain networks allow me to receive God's consciousness. It is his gift to us.

A moment ago you accused me of separating “me” and the soul. Now you have your soul “receiving” your soul (a piece of God’s consciousness) thanks to the brain networks. What does that mean? See later for your use of “allow”. And you haven’t answered my question. Why can’t God’s consciousness be conscious in life and death? Also see below.

DAVID: I'll repeat: I/soul drive/originate the thoughts created through the electricity in the brain networks. The networks never can do it on their own as you try to imply about my theory.

If your soul “originates” the thoughts, in what way are they “created” by the electricity in the brain? If you/your soul has a thought, is it not a thought until it’s been “translated” into electricity? One of your theories was that the soul then translated the thought back into English, so that the soul could presumably understand the English thought that was translated into electricity. Does this make any sense to you?

dhw: ...our problem is not different concepts of dualism but the seemingly irreconcilable clash between your belief in a conscious soul as the initiator of thought and your belief, here called knowledge, that consciousness and thought arise from electric currents in the brain.

DAVID: Repeated for the umpteenth time: The soul/I use the electrical networks to initiate and to create thought. My soul is me!

Yes, your dualist’s soul is the thinking you that you believe will go on being the thinking you when there are no electrical networks. You keep repeating for the umpteenth time that it “uses” the networks to initiate/create thought, and for the umpteenth time I ask HOW it uses them. I have summarized your last bewildering answer (the translation theory) above.

dhw: You cannot see that this contradiction lies at the very heart of the debate between dualism and materialism, and the object of our discussions is to find a coherent explanation for the mystery. I have tried to do that, but I can’t find any coherence in all your contradictions and nebulous, transient concepts mentioned above.

DAVID: I may have difficulty turning my theories into something you can understand, but all you do is keep using rigid forms of dualism I don't accept. I start from the point that I know I use my brain to be conscious and think. There has to be a material side to thinking. I think it is the soul that allows consciousness to appear from the material side, as you know.

I have immense difficulty understanding your theories, because firstly they keep changing, and secondly you use terms that cry out for explanation. What do you mean by the soul “allows consciousness to appear from the material side”? The soul, by your definition, IS consciousness – you call it a piece of God’s consciousness – and so if it is housed in the brain, yes, it “appears” from the brain when given material expression, but until then it stays in the brain. How does this mean that the brain creates thought? Back we go to the question you didn’t answer: why, in YOUR concept of dualism, can’t your God’s consciousness be conscious inside the brain in life (using the brain for information and material expression), and outside the brain in death?


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