Author Topic: Natural Explanation Vs Magical  (Read 9911 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Online Foxy Freedom

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1445
  • Darwins +97/-12
  • Why is it so difficult to say you don't know?
    • Foxy Freedom on Doctor Who
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #696 on: April 27, 2014, 10:33:43 AM »
This is the nearest picture I could find to your pin cushion. I have seen better, but you can see the similarities of different colours of light coming from a prism, compared to your pins from a cushion.

Neither Foxy Freedom nor any associates can be reached via WWGHA. Their official antitheist website is http://the6antitheist6guide6.blogspot.co.uk

The 2nd edition of the free ebook Devil or Delusion ? The danger of Christianity to Democracy Freedom and Science.       http://t.co/2d1KcJ9V

Offline median

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1848
  • Darwins +201/-16
  • Gender: Male
  • Yahweh: Obviously not obvious.
    • Talk Origins
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #697 on: April 27, 2014, 12:27:45 PM »
Dominic, are you going to ignore the rebuttals to yours and J. Russell's claims?
Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. Carl Sagan

Online eh!

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1642
  • Darwins +61/-32
  • Gender: Male
  • jimmy hendrix is jesus
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #698 on: April 27, 2014, 03:33:16 PM »
Thing is anyone can "dream" up any fanciful model of consciousness dime a dozen. without evidence or a detailed mechanism of how things work they are just mental masturbation.
Signature goes here...

Offline Dominic

  • Postgraduate
  • *****
  • Posts: 914
  • Darwins +6/-9
  • Gender: Male
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #699 on: April 27, 2014, 04:08:52 PM »
Thanks Foxy

Online wheels5894

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 2532
  • Darwins +110/-1
  • Gender: Male
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #700 on: April 27, 2014, 04:15:16 PM »
So this is what it looks like when you mish mash religion and philosophy in the most bone-head way and just make shit up as you go to avoid engaging simple sound logic.

dom you have made a mess of whatever your point was supposed to be. hope you learned something here, i sure did.

If that is your summary of the thread (an abusive one liner) and since you seem unsure of my point, then here is my summary -

Reality Model 1:  Consciousness is fundamental - matter/energy is a particular manifestation of consciousness.

Reality Model 2:  Matter/energy is fundamental - consciousness emerges from matter/energy.

There is no default belief when choosing between a consciousness based model of reality and a material based model of reality - because picking one model undermines the assumptions of the other.

If we don't wish to remain agnostic then we have to choose a model.

Assumptions behind either model of reality cannot be proven.  [ eg science simply assumes that our senses present us with information about a world external to consciousness. ]

If theists are being dogmatic when choosing model 1 then atheists and many scientists are being dogmatic if they choose model 2.

The OP simply chooses to name the one model magic and name the other model natural because that suits a pre-chosen and dogmatic mindset.

This is getting quite boring. however let's look again at your points.

a. The only consciousness I am aware of is attached to the brains of people and, maybe, higher animals. I know from my own experiences and the experiences of others that we are aware not only of each other but of our surroundings. This is the only consciousness I believe science knows as well.

b. EVIDENCE We, as above, know the evidence of consciousness based in brains. Do you have any evidence of any consciousness not based in the brains of, say, humans? This is vitals, Dominic, because without evidence, point 1. of your list fails - falls flat on its face.  We have evidence that at least starts to support point 2. so show us your evidence for point 1 or stop thus ridiculous discussion of something you dreamt but which has no basis in rational thought.
No testimony is sufficient to establish a miracle, unless the testimony be of such that its falshood would be more miraculous than the facts it endeavours to establish. (David Hume)

Online eh!

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1642
  • Darwins +61/-32
  • Gender: Male
  • jimmy hendrix is jesus
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #701 on: April 27, 2014, 04:31:16 PM »
As GB hinted at, if dom believed in his theory then what would be the purpose of any discussion, it's all a dream.  sorry GB if i paraphrased incorrectly.
Signature goes here...

Offline screwtape

  • The Great Red Dragon
  • Administrator
  • *******
  • Posts: 12345
  • Darwins +677/-28
  • Gender: Male
  • Karma mooch
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #702 on: April 28, 2014, 08:16:50 AM »
Does that make us the pin cushion or the pin?

I am pretty sure I am the pin.  I am often told I am quite a prick.
Links:
Rules
Guides & Tutorials

What's true is already so. Owning up to it does not make it worse.

Online nogodsforme

  • Professor
  • ********
  • Posts: 6709
  • Darwins +894/-6
  • Gender: Female
  • Jehovah's Witness Protection Program
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #703 on: April 28, 2014, 03:37:57 PM »
Does that make us the pin cushion or the pin?

I am pretty sure I am the pin.  I am often told I am quite a prick.

And we all know how annoying a little prick can be. (Iron Man 2 quote)
Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.

Online wheels5894

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 2532
  • Darwins +110/-1
  • Gender: Male
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #704 on: April 28, 2014, 03:50:17 PM »
You have a point, nogodsforme!

Meanwhile is it same to assume that Dominic has no evidence to offer so is now just ignoring requests for evidence? He certainly seems keen to assert things and defend them with the exception of providing hard evidence.
No testimony is sufficient to establish a miracle, unless the testimony be of such that its falshood would be more miraculous than the facts it endeavours to establish. (David Hume)

Online nogodsforme

  • Professor
  • ********
  • Posts: 6709
  • Darwins +894/-6
  • Gender: Female
  • Jehovah's Witness Protection Program
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #705 on: April 28, 2014, 04:24:42 PM »
Maybe he will tell how many angels can dance on the head of a ....oh never mind. ;D
Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.

Online eh!

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1642
  • Darwins +61/-32
  • Gender: Male
  • jimmy hendrix is jesus
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #706 on: April 28, 2014, 10:49:51 PM »

can someone embedd this, relavant to discussion;

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Hr3-pinhead2.png

Signature goes here...

Online wheels5894

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 2532
  • Darwins +110/-1
  • Gender: Male
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #707 on: April 29, 2014, 03:49:31 AM »
No problem, Eh!

No testimony is sufficient to establish a miracle, unless the testimony be of such that its falshood would be more miraculous than the facts it endeavours to establish. (David Hume)

Offline Graybeard

  • Global Moderator
  • ******
  • Posts: 6710
  • Darwins +534/-19
  • Gender: Male
  • Is this going somewhere?
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #708 on: April 29, 2014, 06:00:44 AM »
… here is my summary -

Reality Model 1:  Consciousness is fundamental - matter/energy is a particular manifestation of consciousness.

Reality Model 2:  Matter/energy is fundamental - consciousness emerges from matter/energy.

Of course, we may “believe” anything but don’t you think that Model 1 lacks all credibility as there is not the slightest shred of evidence to support it?

Quote
The OP simply chooses to name the one model magic and name the other model natural because that suits a pre-chosen and dogmatic mindset.
I cannot see how you reach that conclusion when our demonstrable knowledge is to Model 2. There is no magic behind it any more than there is in dissolving a teaspoon of salt in a pint of warm water.

Do you see that it is better to side with the idea that we and others can demonstrate, experience, and test, rather than assert some nebulous idea that is directly from our imagination?

You see, we can all just invent a reason for something – it is pretty easy - which is why we are not all Nobel Prize winners.

Can I take you up on this:
Quote
consciousness emerges from matter/energy.
You probably did not intend it, but the statement, as it stands, indicates an equality between energy and “consciousness” -> all energy will produce “consciousness.” This is not so.

It misses out the wider point that the energy must be in the form of matter and fails to emphasis the rarity of circumstances in which that matter takes on life.

The second point assumes that “consciousness” is common to all life, rather than sentient life. A tree cannot be said to be “conscious” or have “consciousness” but can be said “to be alive/have life.”

The third point is that “consciousness” seems to be used in a nebulous way: I, for one, have little idea as to how to distinguish it from “life”. If I substitute “life” for “consciousness”, I don’t see a great difference in your statements. The first one becomes interesting:

“Reality Model 1:  Life is fundamental - matter/energy is a particular manifestation of life.”

I suggest that this gives the casual reader an idea of how strange and unbelievable “Reality Model 1.” is.

Finally, whatever the meaning of “consciousness” it is an attribute like “knowledge” or “caution” or “sadness”. None of these can exist on their own, i.e. devoid of a subject which they might attach to and modify.

It is worthwhile remembering the words of Dara O'Briain[1]: “Science knows it doesn’t know everything, otherwise, it would stop. Just because science doesn’t know everything, it doesn’t mean that you can fill in the gaps with whatever fairytale most appeals to you.”
 1. Mathematician and theoretical physicist.
« Last Edit: April 29, 2014, 06:05:42 AM by Graybeard »
Nobody says “There are many things that we thought were natural processes, but now know that a god did them.”

Online eh!

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1642
  • Darwins +61/-32
  • Gender: Male
  • jimmy hendrix is jesus
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #709 on: April 29, 2014, 06:08:08 AM »
As a dominican convert i says how do you know the tree does not have consciousness ...what is your evidence.


don't mind me... :-)
Signature goes here...

Offline Graybeard

  • Global Moderator
  • ******
  • Posts: 6710
  • Darwins +534/-19
  • Gender: Male
  • Is this going somewhere?
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #710 on: April 29, 2014, 09:41:30 AM »
We know every molecule of their make-up. We know every part and element of their structure. We know the function of all components. We know a nervous system is required to have "consciousness" to be able to formulate images and sensations. We know that trees are basically autonomous and automatic chemical factories. We can prove this.

If you are going to go down the road of "How do we "know" anything." I would ask you first to do some research into the validity and point of some philosophies.

If you think that "spirits live inside trees" or that trees have a soul, this would be the assertion of new knowledge and the onus would be upon you to prove it, not just think of the first thing that comes into your head and write it down.

No sane person, given the knowledge we have, would credit trees with having "consciousness". The display none of the attributes that are normally displayed by sentient beings.

The idea of trees with consciousness is pure, unadulterated "woo". It is "magic".
Nobody says “There are many things that we thought were natural processes, but now know that a god did them.”

Offline Dominic

  • Postgraduate
  • *****
  • Posts: 914
  • Darwins +6/-9
  • Gender: Male
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #711 on: May 07, 2014, 09:12:48 AM »

Median

You and others are asking for a demonstration that consciousness is fundamental (rather than matter).

I assume that the demonstration you are asking for is in the physical world (the world of matter).

But if consciousness is primary and the physical world emerges within consciousness then you are effectively asking that a person effectively in a 'dream' (with you) physically verify the primacy of consciousness.

So what evidence could possibly convince you ?  It would need to be evidence collected within a dream (so to speak).

You say that the difference between dreaming and waking is obvious but that is only by defining dreaming and waking in a certain strict way.  To see this point more clearly we could define them the other way around ie dreaming is when we are constrained by apparent laws and waking is when we no longer have those constraints (ie a less limited state).  We have simply grown accustomed to describing it the other way around from that.  It is simply an assumption that what we call waking is a more 'real' state than what we call dreaming.

I think you mentioned Ockham's Razor a couple of times.  While Ockham's Razor is only meant to be a guide, I think it works in favour of the consciousness model which has at least 2 fewer assumptions rather than the matter model -

1.  We know that we are conscious but we don't know that matter is not dreamt/imagined.

2.  We know that consciousness can produce an environment with apparent matter - because it happens to us all when we dream.  But we don't know that matter can produce consciousness.

So the matter model requires two extra assumptions! which are - 1. What we call waking is not a dream and 2. Consciousness can arise from matter.

So here we have a fundamental problem for atheism - If the primacy of consciousness model is no less valid than the matter model (and since the consciousness model requires fewer assumptions) then atheism has no grounds for trying to use the matter based model to attempt to contradict an alternative and simpler model (eg belief in God as the source/origin/essence of consciousness).

Certainly atheists are free to adopt the extra assumptions of the matter model but their assumed model provides no grounds whatsoever for attacking an alternative and simpler model. 


Online wheels5894

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 2532
  • Darwins +110/-1
  • Gender: Male
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #712 on: May 07, 2014, 10:12:32 AM »
Right, so that makes perfect sense does it?

How about

1.  We know that we are conscious because we share exactly the same environment with each other and the laws of nature are consistent.

2.  We know that dreaming is a state in which we don't share sense experiences with any one else and the laws of nature vary dramatically.

3.  We know that consciousness is something that applies to higher mammals, including humans, and that consciousness happens only when the individual has a working brain.

It is  a reasonable conclusion that the brain, in fact, generates the consciousness.

It is not the number of steps but the facts and logic I am concerned with here. Come up with evidence that it is wrong and we might be able to talk.
No testimony is sufficient to establish a miracle, unless the testimony be of such that its falshood would be more miraculous than the facts it endeavours to establish. (David Hume)

Offline Add Homonym

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 2727
  • Darwins +222/-4
  • Gender: Male
  • I can haz jeezusburger™
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #713 on: May 07, 2014, 11:23:47 AM »
It is simply an assumption that what we call waking is a more 'real' state than what we call dreaming.

It's not totally an assumption. I find that my waking life has continuity. It's the continuity I value.

My dreams are derived from things I learn in the continuity.

Here I define reality as continuity. This definition makes what I say true, and what you say wrong. This is good enough for me.
Humans, in general, don't waste any opportunity to be unfathomably stupid - Dr Cynical.

Offline screwtape

  • The Great Red Dragon
  • Administrator
  • *******
  • Posts: 12345
  • Darwins +677/-28
  • Gender: Male
  • Karma mooch
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #714 on: May 07, 2014, 11:31:11 AM »

Median

You and others are asking for a demonstration that consciousness is fundamental (rather than matter).

I assume that the demonstration you are asking for is in the physical world (the world of matter).

You have made a claim that is neither verifiable nor disprovable.  That makes it irrelevant.  If we are in a dream from which we cannot awake, our apparent reality is all we can deal with.  And the "external" reality, being inaccessable for the moment, is irrelevant.   

I've asked this already several times and you've ignored it, as far as I can tell.  So we're brains in jars.  Now what?  How does that change anything?


So here we have a fundamental problem for atheism -

You miss the bigger implications of consciousness argument.  If we are brains in jars (or I am, since the rest of you are likely just fantasms of my dreams), then no knowledge is possible and nothing matters. 

Links:
Rules
Guides & Tutorials

What's true is already so. Owning up to it does not make it worse.

Online jdawg70

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 2104
  • Darwins +375/-8
  • Ex-rosary squad
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #715 on: May 07, 2014, 12:02:05 PM »
2.  We know that consciousness can produce an environment with apparent matter - because it happens to us all when we dream.  But we don't know that matter can produce consciousness.
There is a massive assumption buried in this.

This assumes that your 'consciousness' preceded your birth (or conception if you'd like to go back that far - doesn't really matter).  If you do not make that assumption, then we have at least 7 billion examples of consciousness being produced by matter.
"When we landed on the moon, that was the point where god should have come up and said 'hello'. Because if you invent some creatures, put them on the blue one and they make it to the grey one, you f**king turn up and say 'well done'."

- Eddie Izzard

http://deepaksducttape.wordpress.com/

Offline jaimehlers

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 4936
  • Darwins +563/-17
  • Gender: Male
  • WWGHA Member
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #716 on: May 07, 2014, 12:24:48 PM »
You and others are asking for a demonstration that consciousness is fundamental (rather than matter).

I assume that the demonstration you are asking for is in the physical world (the world of matter).
Yes, that's pretty much what we're asking for, because if consciousness is fundamental, then someone should be able to make changes to the physical world with their consciousness.  This is even more important because of the fact that we can apparently make changes to a person's consciousness using physical matter (surgery, drugs, even hitting someone over the head, can all cause altered states of consciousness, or the outright destruction of it).

As it stands, you are engaging in special pleading - you are expecting us to just ignore the fact that you can't provide any such demonstration without a good reason.  Note that sophistry like you engage in below is never a good reason to justify special pleading.

Quote from: Dominic
But if consciousness is primary and the physical world emerges within consciousness then you are effectively asking that a person effectively in a 'dream' (with you) physically verify the primacy of consciousness.
So why can't you?  I mean, according to you, when a person is in a dream, their consciousness creates matter in order to create their environment.  Yet nobody has ever been able to create matter using their consciousness in the real world.  If consciousness is primary, then it should at least be possible to do this.  So why can't you produce any evidence for it?

Quote from: Dominic
So what evidence could possibly convince you ?  It would need to be evidence collected within a dream (so to speak).
Why do you have to ask what evidence would be convincing?  If the physical world is a dream, then a person's consciousness should be able to manipulate it.  It isn't a matter of whether it would be convincing, it's a matter of whether it's possible to even do.  So why not just do various things with your consciousness and see what would actually convince people?  As it stands, all you're doing is convincing us that you know there isn't any way to provide any such evidence and are trying to use special pleading to excuse your belief from the need to present evidence.

Quote from: Dominic
You say that the difference between dreaming and waking is obvious but that is only by defining dreaming and waking in a certain strict way.  To see this point more clearly we could define them the other way around ie dreaming is when we are constrained by apparent laws and waking is when we no longer have those constraints (ie a less limited state).  We have simply grown accustomed to describing it the other way around from that.  It is simply an assumption that what we call waking is a more 'real' state than what we call dreaming.
This is pretty much just sophistry.  It's nothing but a way to try to argue that even though you can't present evidence or anything to support your belief, that it deserves to be taken seriously anyway.  And the mere fact that you have to play with definitions to try to make your point is a dead giveaway that you have nothing else to support it at all.  You say that it's just an assumption that waking is a more 'real' state than dreaming, but this just demonstrates your misunderstanding of the whole subject.  Waking and dreaming are both equally real states of consciousness; we can tell when someone is awake as opposed to dreaming by the electrical signals their brain gives off.  In other words, it's pretty well confirmed that a dreaming mind is contained within the physical universe, because it is still linked to one's physical body.

Quote from: Dominic
I think you mentioned Ockham's Razor a couple of times.  While Ockham's Razor is only meant to be a guide, I think it works in favour of the consciousness model which has at least 2 fewer assumptions rather than the matter model -

1.  We know that we are conscious but we don't know that matter is not dreamt/imagined.

2.  We know that consciousness can produce an environment with apparent matter - because it happens to us all when we dream.  But we don't know that matter can produce consciousness.
Except that you are excluding additional assumptions that you must make in order to hold your "consciousness is primary" belief.  Worse, you apparently don't even realize that you're doing so.  First, you assume that we are actually conscious, rather than it being a cognitive illusion.  Second, you assume that consciousness can create something akin to matter.  Third, you assume that there is no way to tell the difference between actual matter and dream matter.  Fourth, you assume that there must be something that prevents our individual consciousnesses from affecting the physical universe while we're awake (which begs the question of what that might be).  Fifth, you assume that dreams are somehow 'outside' the entire physical universe.

Quote from: Dominic
So the matter model requires two extra assumptions! which are - 1. What we call waking is not a dream and 2. Consciousness can arise from matter.
As opposed to your consciousness model, which requires a number of additional assumptions; I'm sure there are more than just the five I noted.  I'd say Occam's razor still falls on the side of the "matter model", as you put it.

Quote from: Dominic
So here we have a fundamental problem for atheism - If the primacy of consciousness model is no less valid than the matter model (and since the consciousness model requires fewer assumptions) then atheism has no grounds for trying to use the matter based model to attempt to contradict an alternative and simpler model (eg belief in God as the source/origin/essence of consciousness).
Except, first, your "consciousness model" requires additional assumptions, and second, you can provide no evidence whatsoever for it.  That makes it a much less valid and reliable model.  But even if it were equally valid, it would still require evidence to support it.  Therefore, your argument here is nothing more than special pleading.  It doesn't matter how valid a model seems; what matters is whether it has evidence to support it.  If there is no evidence, then there is no reason to consider it until you provide evidence, and furthermore, there is no reason to consider any spurious attempts by you to falsely level the playing field so you can pretend that other models that have evidence to support them are no more valid than your evidence-less, assumption-filled model.

Quote from: Dominic
Certainly atheists are free to adopt the extra assumptions of the matter model but their assumed model provides no grounds whatsoever for attacking an alternative and simpler model.
Given that your argument has proven to be egregiously flawed, there is no reason to give your opinion that other people cannot criticize your belief for its lack of evidence any special consideration.  You are more than welcome to hold whatever beliefs you want, but you don't have any business trying to excuse those beliefs from criticism by using sophistry, special pleading, and bad reasoning.

Offline Anfauglir

  • Global Moderator
  • ******
  • Posts: 6198
  • Darwins +408/-5
  • Gender: Male
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #717 on: May 08, 2014, 02:45:07 AM »
So here we have a fundamental problem for atheism - If the primacy of consciousness model is no less valid than the matter model (and since the consciousness model requires fewer assumptions) then atheism has no grounds for trying to use the matter based model to attempt to contradict an alternative and simpler model (eg belief in God as the source/origin/essence of consciousness).

Heh - I did find that amusing! 

The primary factor for me, as has been said by others, is that consciousness can be influenced, altered, and in many cases hugely changed by the application of physical - material - input to the brain.  The most valid model therefore is that consiousness is a product of the brain.  THAT is the simplest explanation.

What YOU want to do is "simply" insert an omnimax deity that creates consciousnesses without input from matter, but which are nevertheless tied TO matter, and that cannot detectably be differentiated FROM matter.

Hence my amusement at the "simpler model" that - without any evidence - you are trying to push.
Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid.
Why is it so hard for believers to answer a direct question?

Online wheels5894

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 2532
  • Darwins +110/-1
  • Gender: Male
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #718 on: May 08, 2014, 03:05:04 AM »
Not only that, but I presume Dom wants this omnimax god - something that is immaterial - to also have consciousness before getting on with creating. So his evidence would need to show that consciousness[1] can exist without the presence of a human mind, the only way we know consciousness exists.
 1. I'm getting tired of discussions with this word as I still can't get my fingers round it!
No testimony is sufficient to establish a miracle, unless the testimony be of such that its falshood would be more miraculous than the facts it endeavours to establish. (David Hume)

Offline Add Homonym

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 2727
  • Darwins +222/-4
  • Gender: Male
  • I can haz jeezusburger™
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #719 on: May 08, 2014, 03:13:39 AM »
So here we have a fundamental problem for atheism - If the primacy of consciousness model is no less valid than the matter model (and since the consciousness model requires fewer assumptions) then atheism has no grounds for trying to use the matter based model to attempt to contradict an alternative and simpler model (eg belief in God as the source/origin/essence of consciousness).

Heh - I did find that amusing! 

I think it's more amusing when Skeppo says exactly the same thing, because he would get more -1 for the same comment, when using that handle.
Humans, in general, don't waste any opportunity to be unfathomably stupid - Dr Cynical.

Offline median

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1848
  • Darwins +201/-16
  • Gender: Male
  • Yahweh: Obviously not obvious.
    • Talk Origins
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #720 on: May 08, 2014, 11:17:34 AM »

Median

You and others are asking for a demonstration that consciousness is fundamental (rather than matter).

I assume that the demonstration you are asking for is in the physical world (the world of matter).

But if consciousness is primary and the physical world emerges within consciousness then you are effectively asking that a person effectively in a 'dream' (with you) physically verify the primacy of consciousness.

So what evidence could possibly convince you ?  It would need to be evidence collected within a dream (so to speak).

You say that the difference between dreaming and waking is obvious but that is only by defining dreaming and waking in a certain strict way.  To see this point more clearly we could define them the other way around ie dreaming is when we are constrained by apparent laws and waking is when we no longer have those constraints (ie a less limited state).  We have simply grown accustomed to describing it the other way around from that.  It is simply an assumption that what we call waking is a more 'real' state than what we call dreaming.

I think you mentioned Ockham's Razor a couple of times.  While Ockham's Razor is only meant to be a guide, I think it works in favour of the consciousness model which has at least 2 fewer assumptions rather than the matter model -

1.  We know that we are conscious but we don't know that matter is not dreamt/imagined.

2.  We know that consciousness can produce an environment with apparent matter - because it happens to us all when we dream.  But we don't know that matter can produce consciousness.

So the matter model requires two extra assumptions! which are - 1. What we call waking is not a dream and 2. Consciousness can arise from matter.

So here we have a fundamental problem for atheism - If the primacy of consciousness model is no less valid than the matter model (and since the consciousness model requires fewer assumptions) then atheism has no grounds for trying to use the matter based model to attempt to contradict an alternative and simpler model (eg belief in God as the source/origin/essence of consciousness).

Certainly atheists are free to adopt the extra assumptions of the matter model but their assumed model provides no grounds whatsoever for attacking an alternative and simpler model.

I reject your assertions that the matter model is making more assumptions. We have already described to you that we do not have to assume your first charge. For the fucking 100th time, science operates upon phenomenological epistemology. We do not need to assume "waking is not a dream" in order to operate in phenomenal experience. We can simply be agnostic about it and all works the same. Sorry! Your second charge is patently false (and arbitrary) since you have neither attempted to define the term consciousness in any way that has been agreed upon, nor have you even taken into account the fact that science has demonstrated the reality of evolution (and that all life has a common ancestor). More complex forms (in their entirety) have evidently derived from simpler precursors. This includes their brains which are the evident center from which consciousness, cognition, sentience, and thinking derive. This is not to mention the fact that supernatural explanations have never (not once) been a sufficient answer (with any kind of explanatory power) for anything in history. So really, you are just making shit up here.

You are operating here on a big assumption (among many) which I reject - that "consciousness" is some "non-physical" thing that is somehow "separate" from the physical world of corporeal experience. Yet, you haven't even begun to demonstrate such a conception is anything but imaginary fiction. These terms "spiritual" and "non-physical" are meaningless and refer to nothing. If you disagree then the burden of proof is upon you to demonstrate such claims (by use of evidence or rational argument - of which you have brought forth neither thus far). All you've done is make assertions and arguments from ignorance (just like your boy Russell did). But saying it is so doesn't make it so. Furthermore, you haven't even attempted to argue for why we should "turn around" the terms "waking" and "dream". Again, I do not (and have not) assumed some absolute knowledge that solipsism is false or that I know for absolutely certain X,Y,Z. I don't care about absolute knowledge. I care about what you can actually demonstrate to be true with reason or evidence.

Now, the game you keep trying to play here (the game of semantics and equivocations where you try to flip meanings of words or use them in a fashion that is not agreed upon) isn't getting you anywhere with these claims you keep making. It just makes you look that much more desperate to win by default. The terms "waking" and "dream" are just that - words. They are used to describe phenomenal experience and differentiate between experiences. Again, we do not have to make your charged assumptions to live or do tests. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. Provide the extraordinary evidence that "consciousness is primary" (and first define that term cogently) or admit that you can't.

Your assumptions which Occam's Razor shaves off:

-There is something "supernatural"
-We must refer to this "supernatural" when attempting to explain consciousness
-Consciousness must be something spooky or magical
-Consciousness is a "thing"
-Consciousness cannot be adequately explained without reference to teleology or "the non-physical"
-We can viably answer a mystery with an even bigger mystery
-Consciousness is "primary"
-Our corporeal experience is illusory


 
Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. Carl Sagan

Offline Dominic

  • Postgraduate
  • *****
  • Posts: 914
  • Darwins +6/-9
  • Gender: Male
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #721 on: May 09, 2014, 11:26:38 AM »
2.  We know that consciousness can produce an environment with apparent matter - because it happens to us all when we dream.  But we don't know that matter can produce consciousness.
There is a massive assumption buried in this.

This assumes that your 'consciousness' preceded your birth (or conception if you'd like to go back that far - doesn't really matter).  If you do not make that assumption, then we have at least 7 billion examples of consciousness being produced by matter.

7 billion assumptions that matter produced consciousness.

Offline Graybeard

  • Global Moderator
  • ******
  • Posts: 6710
  • Darwins +534/-19
  • Gender: Male
  • Is this going somewhere?
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #722 on: May 09, 2014, 11:35:04 AM »
7 billion assumptions that matter produced consciousness.
And just you standing there saying it doesn't.

Kinda puts it into perspective, doesn't it?

2.  We know that consciousness can produce an environment with apparent matter - because it happens to us all when we dream.
I have marked out the important word for you.
« Last Edit: May 09, 2014, 11:37:17 AM by Graybeard »
Nobody says “There are many things that we thought were natural processes, but now know that a god did them.”

Offline Dominic

  • Postgraduate
  • *****
  • Posts: 914
  • Darwins +6/-9
  • Gender: Male
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #723 on: May 09, 2014, 11:36:29 AM »
Not only that, but I presume Dom wants this omnimax god - something that is immaterial - to also have consciousness before getting on with creating. So his evidence would need to show that consciousness[1] can exist without the presence of a human mind, the only way we know consciousness exists.
 1. I'm getting tired of discussions with this word as I still can't get my fingers round it!

I think you mean 'without the presence of a human brain' (ie physical matter) because a 'mind' is as close if not closer to a non physical consciousness than it is to a physical brain.

My response is that your evidence then needs to show that matter can exist without a consciousness perceiving it.  It works both ways.

Offline jaimehlers

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 4936
  • Darwins +563/-17
  • Gender: Male
  • WWGHA Member
Re: Natural Explanation Vs Magical
« Reply #724 on: May 09, 2014, 11:40:22 AM »
7 billion assumptions that matter produced consciousness.
Incorrect.  There are 7 billion examples of matter presumably producing consciousness, but only one assumption that matter can produce consciousness.  Each person does not require any additional assumptions for the original assumption to remain valid.