Introducing the brain: how emotions relate (Introduction)

by dhw, Wednesday, March 04, 2020, 12:11 (130 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: I understood the presented, materialist concept, but I disagreed with your description of the infant. If it has inborn characteristics, it is not “blank-like”, and its brain is not “very blank in the beginning”. I also find the author’s statement that an infant’s brain “doesn’t look like an adult brain” a bit silly. How much of the baby looks like the adult? And the fact that the brain will continually rewire itself throughout life does not mean it does not already have some wiring when the baby is born after its first nine months of formation (and some say experience) in the womb.

DAVID: To be clear your concept of not blank is not true. I'm referring to the timing of developments.The baby brain arrives with the proper areas and connections, but the characteristics it brings along, that you note, are in the DNA of the neurons and when experiences occur the brain will then respond and form itself with those influences actively in participation, so the future results reflects its inheritence.

“To be clear”, I find your concept of “blank” incomprehensible. I understand by “blank” that there is nothing – whatever it is, is empty. If the baby arrives with a brain containing proper areas and connections and individual characteristics, it is not blank or empty. Future experiences will of course go on developing and changing whatever connections and characteristics it started out with.

dhw: I note that you have not commented on the fact that “consciousness develops as the brain develops” yet again underlines your materialist beliefs although you claim to be a dualist, even if you add the word “soul”. This would only work if you meant that the soul develops as the brain provides it with more and more information.
DAVID: The soul can do more and more with concepts as the brain provides more complexity. The soul uses the brain tt way as a tool.

This all got horribly garbled – hence your three attempts to post it! (“tt way” is still garbled.) The explanation is also pretty garbled. What do you mean by “the brain provides more complexity”? I agree that if there is a soul it uses the brain as a tool, and I keep reiterating that the two uses are to gather more and more information, and to give material implementation to its concepts. What else does the brain provide? You, however, keep saying that it is the brain that does the conceiving, e.g. “an earlier brain cannot conceive what a more advanced brain can conceive.” THAT is materialism.


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