Introducing the brain: half a brain is just fine (Introduction)

by dhw, Sunday, March 15, 2020, 10:28 (111 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: Please explain why it is illogical to suggest that if the brain enlarges on a small scale now, it might have enlarged on a large scale in earlier times.

DAVID: Your idea is pure theory based on what I view as a 'category' idea: any brain enlargement of any size definitely implies any sized enlargement is possible. Of course it is, just as anything you declare possible is possible out of thin air. Categorically tiny enlargements are only that, and offer no proof 200 cc enlargements come from the same causes.

Back you go to “proof”. Yes, it is a theory, and nobody has ever produced a theory that has been proven, because otherwise we would not even be discussing the cause of enlargement. It is not illogical to speculate that a known current process might have operated on a larger scale in the past. Can you give me proof that your God popped in to enlarge brains 200 cc at a time?

dhw: According to you, God preprogrammed or dabbled the whole process, each expansion taking place before it was needed. So please explain without any fluffiness why you think he stopped the expansion and engineered increased complexification (plus mini-enlargements) to take over, and why he then presumably decided that the brain was too big and needed shrinking.

DAVID: You have forgotten my rule. You love to dig into God's reasons. I don't. My guess is the bigger brain contained a complexification mechanism, which as complexity was accomplished the mechanism disappeared. Logical, yes. Correct, only God knows?

How can I possibly forget your rule, which is that you refuse to answer any awkward question that throws doubt on your personal interpretation of your God’s motives and actions? Your guess makes no sense. How can the mechanism for complexity have disappeared if the brain continues to complexify? Similarly one might ask how can the mechanism for expansion have disappeared if parts of the brain still expand?

DAVID: We don't know why the brain started out bigger.

dhw: That is precisely what I have repeatedly tried to explain.

DAVID: Explaining without God in charge makes your job difficult. I've given a logical guess as to why larger at first above. Again, only god knows if it is correct.

What do you mean by “in charge”? I’ll keep my theist hat on for the purpose of this discussion. My job of explaining my proposal with God but without his being "in charge of" every single life form, natural wonder, brain expansion etc. is perfectly simple: your God created the mechanism whereby cells/cell communities, including those of the brain, have the autonomous ability to change their structure (e.g. to enlarge it) in order to cope with or exploit new conditions and requirements.

DAVID (responding to my explanation of expansion and shrinkage): Of course reasonable, but is your guess correct? Only God knows. Try accepting what God did without hunting for His reasons. My logical guess is above. But why bother?

You mean that I should try accepting your interpretation of what God did. Why should I, if it is NOT reasonable? As for "Why bother?" see the thread devoted to your theory of evolution.

dhw: your comment emphasizes your materialistic view of it, since you have the brain and not the soul searching for the “pint” (I love this misprint! Hic!). This ties in with my earlier attempts to reconcile dualism and materialism under a Theory of Intelligence, beginning on 26 April 2018.

DAVID: You know full well my theory: the soul uses more complex mechanisms in the brain for more complex conceptualization thought.

That was my explanation of the theory you ought to be espousing as a dualist. The soul uses the (more) complex mechanisms of the brain to gather information and it uses the (more) complex mechanisms of the brain to implement those concepts. Whereas over and over again, you have the brain doing the conceiving. Do you really want me to produce a list of quotes?

(For some reason your post was repeated, all in italics. I’ve taken the liberty of deleting the repetition.)


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