A THEORY OF INTELLIGENCE Part Two; addendum (Identity)

by dhw, Friday, August 03, 2018, 11:41 (133 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: I am a combination of my immaterial mind, my immaterial soul, and my material me.
dhw: (1) I don’t know why you are separating your mind from your soul.

DAVID: I'm not. My mind is produced by my soul using my brain to think.

You have also said that “my immaterial soul has a way of creating consciousness out of electricity “, and you bracket mind and consciousness together. So your now unconscious soul doesn’t think, but unconsciously uses the brain (which also doesn’t think) to create a conscious mind, which does think. Presumably then it is the conscious mind and not the soul that goes into the afterlife. I hereby christen this new form of dualism “trialism”.

dhw: Why must your immaterial essence be a copy? If your soul is you – containing the immaterial essence of you – why can’t it survive as itself rather than being a copy?

DAVID: It does survive as itself. But I view it as an immaterial copy of the living me/mind/consciousness.

I know you do. And I am asking why, if it survives as itself, it has to be a copy of itself.


Dhw: How about this for dualism: the immaterial soul produces thought, using the brain to provide information and to give its thought material expression? Too clear for you?

DAVID: Too simplistic. I/soul use my brain to create thought using the electric networks. I/soul cannot create thought without those networks. […] Electric impulses becoming immaterial thought need explanation. I still propose the soul part of me creates the consciousness needed.

dhw: Electric impulses are issued by the brain. If they become thought, it is the brain that is generating thought (materialism). If the soul creates thought, the electrical impulses are the RESULT of thought, not the generating cause.

DAVID: Not what we know from the material side of this. I/soul cannot think without the brain during life.

Of course you can’t. The brain provides the information and material expression that are absolutely necessary for our thoughts during and about material life. This can hardly be denied, but it doesn’t solve the problem of whether the brain generates thought (materialism) or responds to thought (dualism).

dhw: I’m sorry but I find your new theory as confusing as all the old ones, largely because you have reverted to separating your “I” from its dualistic components of soul and brain/body. (Shall we agree to combine soul and mind, since you have already forgotten “mind”?)

DAVID: I've not forgotten mind. My soul is the mechanism that creates mind/consciousness from the electric networks.

So you really have jettisoned your earlier theory that the soul is a part of your God’s consciousness which returns to God after death. And you are now separating the concept of soul from the concept of mind/consciousness, which certainly shatters every existing definition of the soul as “the part of the person that is not physical and that contains their character, thought and feelings” (Longman). Now it is just a mechanism that uses the electric brain waves to create mind/consciousness, in which case it has to be the mind/consciousness that survives the death of the brain, and not the soul.

DAVID: You have separated me and my soul as usual.

On the contrary, my concept has “me” being made up of soul and body/brain. As usual, it is you who separate them, with comments like “my soul and I think with my brain networks”, or as in your next comment:

DAVID: I and my soul are me, but my soul is also an immaterial representative essence of me that is an exact copy of me that can survive into the afterlife.

Of course I am me. “I and my soul” separates me and my soul! And as above, why does the soul have to be a representation or copy of you if it is already you? Why can’t the immaterial essence of you survive as the immaterial essence of you?

DAVID: My immaterial soul is also the mechanism that creates consciousness as the soul/I think with the brain.

dhw: Separation between soul and mind not mentioned here. If my soul thinks with the brain thereby creating consciousness, then the soul itself is not conscious although it thinks with the brain. What sort of thinking can it do if it’s not conscious?

DAVID: My soul can never think on its own separate from me, except when it arrives in the afterlife and doesn't have the material me hanging around. This fully separates material life from immaterial existence afterward. It is clearly a form of dualism, but certainly not yours.

Of course material life is separate from immaterial life, but your new concept of trialism, with an unconscious soul thinking together with an unconscious brain to produce a conscious mind is certainly not my concept of dualism!


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