Dualism (Identity)

by dhw, Friday, May 01, 2020, 11:55 (455 days ago)

Transferred from “Brain expansion”:

dhw: According to your belief, it should be the soul that works out the immaterial design, using information supplied by the neuronal network, and the soul will then go on to use the neuronal network to give material form to the immaterial design.

DAVID: Not my theory: The soul must use the existing brain neuronal network to think. More complex larger network more advanced conceptualization by the soul. If you want to use my theory, please get it correctly!

If the “use” is not the provision of information and the means of implementing the concept, what is it? I agree with you that the more information the larger network provides, the more complex will be the thoughts of the soul. But how does that come to mean that the soul can’t think without the brain? Crucial to your belief in dualism is the subject of NDEs, when the brain is supposed to be dead but the soul not only observes but also enters a new world, perceives, communicates, remembers, reacts, and THINKS. You have said that the soul is housed within the brain. If it can think when it leaves its “house”, why is it incapable of thinking unless it has the house? Once again, the dualist’s soul uses the brain to gather information and to implement its thoughts. You have agreed with this before, but now you disagree, so please explain what else it uses the brain for.

DAVID: ...The new larger brain provides that neuronal complexity in the newly enlarged frontal and prefrontal lobes for the soul to think of it

dhw: So the neural network apparently has the thought without which the soul cannot think of the thought!

DAVID: Still confused. The soul must use the brain to think, just as I use my brain to think.

An added complication. What is the “I” that thinks? For a materialist the “I” is all that emerges from the interplay between the materials of the body (including heredity) plus the influences of upbringing, environment, experience, chance etc. For the dualist, it is all of these plus an immaterial component called the soul, which is responsible for all mental activity (and may even live on after bodily death). So “I” the soul uses “I” the brain to gather information and to give physical expression to its thoughts. Same question as above: what else does it use the brain for?

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