Brain expansion (Evolution)

by dhw, Monday, June 29, 2020, 09:34 (89 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: Your discussion of stasis is the antithesis of your theory that brains grow because of the need for implementation of an idea held by the previous brain.

dhw: Small brain produces big new idea. Brain expands in order to implement big new idea. No more big new ideas for thousands of years. Brain does not expand for thousands of years. That is stasis. Where’s the antithesis?

DAVID: But the problem with your idea is that brains do expand followed by long periods of stasis. Then the product of the new idea's product that you think causes the expansion shows up. Why the delay if the idea is what drives expansion?

The product of the idea doesn’t show up after a long period of stasis! There is no delay. You have very obligingly answered for me:
DAVID: We have no idea when the idea appears or the manufacture of the new implement is performed. In archaeological dig both are found together. So all that can be said is the artifact is related to and the result of the newly-size brain.

Precisely: they are found together, and the artefact is the result of the newly expanded brain. Then comes stasis. Thank you.

DAVID: I am a dualist, not a materialist, and I do not accept your style of dualist theory.

dhw: You have already accepted it, but insisted on an addition to which I have objected. Here is the exchange:

dhw: In dualism the soul does the thinking. Yes or no? It uses the brain for information and for implementation as defined above. Yes or no?

DAVID: Yes and no. Please add, in life, the soul must use its companion brain to create thought, the complexity dependent upon presently existing brain capacity for complex thought.

dhw: I do not accept that dualism endows the brain with a capacity for thought. Otherwise you have repeatedly accepted my own “style of dualist theory”.

DAVID: I didn't say or believe what is in the bold.

I have quoted you!

DAVID: What I state is the soul must use the brain's neuronal networks in order to have/create thoughts while in life and attached to/part of the living person.

Yes, we agree! And I have explained how the soul uses the brain, and you have agreed. But you added “brain capacity for complex thought”. If you now wish to withdraw that, please say so and we can shake hands.

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DAVID: What I have described is species learn to use what they are given, and it applies to body as well as brain. Consider gymnastics as a recently developed sport, and the newly seen extreme varieties of maneuvers.

dhw: We consciously perform actions in order to use our bodies in specific ways. We can also consciously perform actions in order to train parts of the brain – e.g. memory exercises. However, when we come up with new ideas and concepts, we are not consciously trying to complexify (or expand) particular areas of our brain! We don’t even know what is going on in our brain! That is why I am flummoxed by the expression “learning to use the brain”, although in some weird way you seem to think your God expanded the sapiens brain so that we would hang around for thousands of years doing nothing with it until in some weird way we learned what we could do with it. When you come up with your theories of evolution and God in control but not in control, do you tell yourself: “Now I am learning to use my cortex and my cerebellum”?

DAVID: Silly comments. I'm well past the stasis for homo sapiens and so are you. 315,000 years ago in Morocco, they had a bigger brain, but did not know how to use it in full capacity as we do now and our forebears learned to do over time, and our teachers and parents and others taught you and I to do now. Unapproached, uncontacted, tribes in the Amazon still aren't using all of their brain capacity. I am analogically comparing the brain to learning piano playing, using an instrument, not a concept difficult to comprehend.

Mystery: in your theory, your God expanded the brain approx 280,000 years before H. sapiens made any significant progress. For some reason, you seem to think this denotes planning, and I asked what was his purpose for the period of stasis. You answered that it was for us to “learn to use the brain”. I don’t understand how you learn to use the brain by doing nothing special for 280,000 years. Stasis has followed every expansion, and I used the Amazon tribes as examples of stasis continuing even now. Learning to play the piano does not mean learning to use the brain. We use our brain in order to gather information and to implement our thoughts. We don't consciously make all the connections and complexify it! And there is nobody on earth who can use the brain to full capacity, because there is nobody on earth who can know everything there is to know or implement every thought that can be implemented.


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