Back to David's theory of evolution of abstract thought (Evolution)

by dhw, Saturday, August 01, 2020, 10:27 (3 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: You really don't understand the difference. From Wikipedia:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abstract_and_concrete
the terms "concrete" and "formal" to describe two different types of learning. Concrete thinking involves facts and descriptions about everyday, tangible objects, while abstract (formal operational) thinking involves a mental process.

dhw: This in itself is nonsensical: concrete thinking about facts and objects is still thinking, and thinking is a mental process. The difference is what is being thought about.

DAVID: Sure it is thinking, but not all thinking is analytical/conceptual, and bees can't do that form of thinking.

You keep trying to turn this discussion into a battle of definitions. It is not. It is a battle of beliefs. You are convinced that bees are not intelligent enough to observe and act upon a beneficial combination of cause and effect: biting a leaf leads to early flowering. You put this on a par with yourself forming theories about God. I offered you another example:
dhw: I am not claiming that bees create an abstract idea from their observations. If you kick your dog, next time (let’s say two weeks later) he sees you raise your foot, he’ll run away.

DAVID: You don't understand training dogs!!! Training for a good result or an adverse (unpleasant) result requires multiple repeated pleasant actions with food treats and praise, the repeats prolonged until the dog understands. Same with horses. They are only concrete thinkers and cannot understand the abstraction behind your training desire.

My example had nothing whatsoever to do with training! Do you honestly believe that if you kick your dog, you will then have to train him with repeated kickings until at last he learns that he should run away from your raised leg? But again we come back to belief. I believe that all living organisms possess sufficient intelligence to learn whether concrete events are good for them or bad for them, and to act accordingly. This entails recognizing the link between cause and effect. I do not share your belief that your God has to preprogramme or dabble such links as a bitten leaf leading to early flowering. And I do not share your belief that such observations require "the same degree of conceptual thought that we use.”


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