Consciousness: not explained by panpsychism (General)

by David Turell @, Tuesday, October 30, 2018, 16:33 (617 days ago) @ dhw

dhw: You’ve always claimed that […] your God is both inside and outside everything. This makes you a theistic panpsychist, but does it mean your God’s consciousness is in a pebble, a grain of sand, a table and chair, the sun?

DAVID: I think in everything that can be conscious with its brain.

dhw; So your panentheistic God, who is inside and outside everything, is outside bacteria and all plant life and all the stars and planets. Or do you mean he’s inside them but hasn’t brought his consciousness with him?

DAVID: Brainless organisms cannot have consciousness or be conscious, but God is there for them. Otherwise how does He design evolutionary advances?

dhw: Your usual assumption that although as a dualist you do not believe the brain to be the source of consciousness, nothing can be conscious unless it has a brain. Anyway, God is now apparently inside and outside everything, but he is not inside bacteria or plants or stones or suns. But he is “there” for them. Where?

God started life and evolved us from a start with bacteria. God's consciousness is within this universe as well as without.


dhw: My atheistic form of panpsychism, which leaves gaps every bit as large as the theistic hypothesis, would be that as energy and matter have gone on eternally forming new combinations, eventually the most rudimentary consciousness came into being, and in due course this evolved into billions of consciousnesses which themselves combined to create increasingly complex forms, perhaps culminating in our own. But at what level consciousness actually began we can have no idea, just as we can have no idea how it can have existed without a beginning (God).

DAVID: Formless energy /matter in this concept is given the property of complexifying all by itself with some sort of imagined self-contained mechanism.

dhw: Yes, the concept is as difficult to conceive as formless energy (God) simply endowed for ever with some sort of sourceless imagined self-contained non-material mechanism for consciousness.

DAVID: God is easy to recognize logically from the complexity of life.

dhw: Formless energy can’t become conscious, but formless energy can be conscious, and this is easy to recognize because life is complex. I do not follow the logic.

The logic must be holistic, looking at every bit of evidence there is a designer. Questioning each tiny aspect of the evidence is not logical. Look at the video of the larva that decides to look like a snake when provoked and tell me it can't have been the result of a designer. Just a bit of evidence you keep denying.


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