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Old 05-28-2013, 10:04 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MysticPhD View Post
If I understand your position (a tenuous and unlikely proposition) it seems you are criticizing Gaylen's position . . . not mine.
Quote:
Originally Posted by stargazzer View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by MysticPhD View Post
That "stuff" is field and energy/mass are the manifestations of it we most associate with materialism. So there are no issues in that regard. What you are simply accepting in your self-described bucolic common sense view is that the field is NOT subjective (conscious) and our consciousness simply emerges from it somehow.
S..
1) bucolic :

As an adjective, bucolic refers to an ideal country life that many yearn for.

The groundless idea that the field is conscious does nothing other then satisfy what many would call trying to support a sparkley, I found god idea that an individual emotionally, may yearn for.

This is meditation improperly translated in a rustic or rural idyllic manner. ( another definition for bucolic

To meditate and turn the system down, find peace, there is a contrast. That contrast and whatever sparkle does NOT imply a personage. You are implying a personage within the field , a consciousness and attributing it to a god with no evidence other then the noticed contrast for this claim. ( as I understand it) If the personage was a god, it would be in its nature transgressed and be, beyond the bounds of creation.

Is the idea suggesting a god is "subject" to the field. It is exactly what seems forcibly implied and out of order due to commonly held understanding in the words god, creation and creature. (Maybe there is another complex thing att to this I don't know. Anyway and politely this is all very unpopular translations where theism is concerned for above reasons, nothing to do with a flat out kick at the cat.

Quote:
Mystic...

What Gaylen is trying to do is to find some way to explain how that could possibly happen in principle using only the objective processes of materialism. To do that he is looking for some "proto-subjectivity" or proto consciousness qualia (a "particle" . . . similar to the Higgs perhaps) that can be shown to aggregate into our consciousness . . . i.e., subjectivity. I simply avoid all the angst and effort by accepting the more logical view that the field itself is conscious and subjectivity is inherent in our reality. Of course that implies and supports my view that reality IS God . . . which you, Gaylen and others find quite unacceptable.
S...

If all you do to avoid G's idea is accept that the field is somehow conscious, then really the fundamental foundation in the offered sketch has little difference... Field auto pilot and conscious for conscious result... or particle auto pilot and conscious result.

It doesn't answer to the categorization and specificity of strict boundaries and force's allowing energy and matter the perfect reliable setting, encouraging the potential and possibility for the constructive building operation we all know. This I find irrational.

The interesting thing is the "right answer" will answer many other questions. All thats yet to be seen is knots in a chord, then the same knot from a different angle, over and over and over.

G says the nuts and bolts of reality....well thats what governs the universe 'gravity, not fields or whatever, or nut.. or bolt.
Ah well . . . I guess not, eh? I can only assume my reading or interpretation of your point was wrong yet again. I give up!
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Old 05-28-2013, 10:27 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MysticPhD View Post
Ah well . . . I guess not, eh? I can only assume my reading or interpretation of your point was wrong yet again. I give up!
Your position in this part of the discussion is scattered and illogical. Suite yourself with the usual, I don't really mind. There is more then enough to pic and choose from.
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Old 05-28-2013, 10:51 PM
 
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Originally Posted by MysticPhD View Post
That is the point. How to account for our subjectivity by purely objective It really has nothing to do with our physical body, per se. It is what the purely objective processes within our body produce that cannot currently be explained by those purely objective processes unless they are somehow inherently subjective . . . as I believe . . . or carry somewhere within the material processes the potential for subjectivity . . . as Gaylen seeks to find. Currently there is no "subjectivity particle" (analogous to the Higgs vis-a-vis Mass) that can be aggregated to give purely objective material matter subjectivity.
How can anyone believe as you say above, that the objective processes in our body need to be somehow inherently subjective, in order to account for subjectivity ? or potential which is leading. (back to the parts in a car don't have anything to do with rolling down a hill...or what ever zillion analogies.

Subjectivity is only a value reflecting the complex building over time in evolution, in a focus for advantage...it only happens, to also be reflective in its nature or subjective, reason.

So the answer is simple, everything is reflective by a common influence, I wonder what that is...gravity.

The right answer, answers many questions.

Last edited by stargazzer; 05-28-2013 at 11:41 PM..
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Old 05-29-2013, 04:01 AM
 
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I'm sorta leaving this alone for a while, partly because the topic is a defence of atheism, not the niceties of philosophical speculations and secondly because the eternal groping for a subjective something that somehow is the killer of the materialist default has failed to produce anything but unanswered questions.

Atheist prejudice aside, I truly do not believe that there is anything of value here other than to god -believers who have a brief for getting 'God' on the feasibility table and thus shifting the burden of proof onto atheism.
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Old 05-29-2013, 05:30 AM
 
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Originally Posted by MysticPhD View Post
Odd . . . given that we are discussing the logic of a subjectivity/qualia aspect of consciousness that cannot currently be explained by a purely objective materialism . . . that you would JUMP to Jesus as a messenger from God.
I was just paraphrasing your supposedly logical, scientific conclusion about god. If you've changed your mind, my mistake.
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Old 05-29-2013, 07:44 AM
 
Location: Kent, Ohio
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MysticPhD View Post
What Gaylen is trying to do is to find some way to explain how that could possibly happenin principle, using only the objective processes of materialism. To do that he is looking for some "proto-subjectivity" or proto consciousness qualia (a "particle" . . . similar to the Higgs perhaps) that can be shown to aggregate into our consciousness . . . i.e., subjectivity.
I've highlighted in red two phrases in the above paragraph that radically misrepresent my project.

The first sentence is almost completely backwards. I'm saying that subjectivity cannot be explained "using only the objective processes of materialism." I think that the core concept of materialism is correct (everything is reducible to the Big Bang energy) but I reject the idea that subjectivity can be reduced to purely objective processes.

The second sentence is misleading because I am not at all thinking of qualia as "particles" of the sort found in physics. Particles are, in principle, reducible to objective properties - i.e., properties that can be described in third-person terms. I believe that qualia can (eventually) be almost fully described using objective terms. I think that the current efforts to find the neural correlates of consciousness could, someday, result in a "qualitative map" showing the interconnected-network nature of qualia. This map could be the mental equivalent of the periodic table of elements. But it won't be a static "chart" - it will look more like a chaotic/dynamic multidimensional mathematical landscape - kinda like a dynamic map of Colorado over geological timescales with mountains rising/falling etc. except that it will probably have a lot more than 3 dimensions. (If anyone wants to carry on this discussion in a science or philosophy form, I'd be happy to explain my reasons for picturing the qualitative map in this way, based on the literature of neuroscience, but we're already so far off the atheist/theist topic that I won't pursue it any further here.)

But notice I said "almost" completely reducible. The reason it won't be 100% reducible comes down to this: The qualitative map will be built upon subjective reports. We will locate the "feeling of seeing blue" on the map, but we will only be able to do this because of empirical studies in which we try different things to someone's brain and ask: "What does that feel like?" This will be mostly an empirically-driven process based on subjective reports - a literal "mapping of what we find." The map will help us understand the interconnectivity of qualia, but I really do not think that the purely objective aspects of the map, by themselves, will explain why there are qualia in the first place - or why a quale feels the way that it feels. The purely objective aspects of the map will all be ultimately based on the subjective reports, and I think that at some level of explanation we will simply need to take some aspects of these subjective reports as logical "givens" - the fundamental stuff that is the foundation for all other explanations, but not, in itself, further explainable. (That's just what "fundamental" means.)

I think we will all be shocked and amazed at how incredibly deep the explanations go before they hit the bedrock of fundamentals, but at some point we will hit some sort of logical rock-bottom, and when we do, I believe that we will find a subjective, or proto-subjective aspect. There will be some sort of brute fact of the matter that more or less says "subjective qualitative experience is possible because of X" - where "X" is logically required to refer to certain brute facts about the nature of subjective qualitative experience, once subjectivity emerges. A sort of logical circularity will be encountered: We will employ X to explain subjectivity, but an intuitive/subjective understanding of qualitative subjectivity will be required in order to understand X in the first place. (And just to be clear: I don't see "X" as a "particle" - I see it as a theory based on empirical evidence, but dependent upon the subjectively-grounded qualitative map.)

Thus I'm not looking for a "particle" of subjectivity, but something more like a fundamental ASPECT of reality that is not fully reducible to purely objective terms because this aspect is a logical prerequisite for comprehending objective terms in the first place.

Last edited by Gaylenwoof; 05-29-2013 at 08:09 AM..
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Old 05-29-2013, 10:17 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gaylenwoof View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by [B
MysticPhD[/b]] What Gaylen is trying to do is to find some way to explain how that could possibly happenin principle, using only the objective processes of materialism. To do that he is looking for some "proto-subjectivity" or proto consciousness qualia (a "particle" . . . similar to the Higgs perhaps) that can be shown to aggregate into our consciousness . . . i.e., subjectivity.
I've highlighted in red two phrases in the above paragraph that radically misrepresent my project.
Based on your subsequent explanations . . . I would disagree that it is a radical misrepresentation. Whether or not you like the term "particle" (Higgs isn't one either in any literal sense . . . it is a manifestation (ASPECT) of the Higgs field). I know that subjectivity cannot be explained by purely objective processes . . . but those trying to follow your rationale don't. It was a tip of the hat to their perspective that I used the term without your qualification of ALMOST.
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Old 05-29-2013, 10:50 AM
 
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Thanks both of you. I can see Gaylen's 'almost'. While I can suggest or at least suppose a biomechanical physical explanation of qualia perhaps in terms of particles of some kind, there is this idea that there is an element that cannot be reduced to the particles of matter and the workings of biophysics.

Where I have my reservations is in whether that non -physical element is not so abstract that it is is not really extant. It sorta wobbles in my mind between the subjective (and I mean by this our own opinions and viewpoints, not a sorta soul) take which we bring to input and the objective which is the actual presentation on the input - taste, sound and sight - the atoms of cake to bod - but more, bod to mind. Which is the how.

It is hard to find the terms but an analogy might be in music. Kant was deprercating about music as it could not communicate. Of course, he never heard Bruckner or Sibelius or Vaughan - Williams. If he had, he would have known that music can communicate in a way that makes mere words seem inadequate.

But what is it that we are getting from it? In a way, I can see that there is a sort of convention that this chord sequence is soothing as blue is cool and another is restless as red is hot. Where do these conventions and joint codes or languages of perception come from?

Once we would have said 'God' and that would do. Now we look to evolved instinct and a built up databank of experience. But there is the is feeling there is something more and it can feel like it, but I am not sure there really is. I cannot shake the idea that it can indeed all be reduced to material physics, plus emergence - putting a lot together can produce more than the components.

This is fact and it can have surprising results.

This is what I was groping towards by saying it produced nothing really useful and it was a bit thin. It is all very interesting and kudos to philosophy for dealing with it - giving a stimulus to science to look for some answers, perhaps, but I really am not sure that are not telling ourselves that there is something more in sensation than is really there. Just because we imagine mythical beings does not mean they exist.
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Old 05-29-2013, 01:29 PM
 
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Great two posts. Your whole idea as it is, I agree completely Aq. As well I think G is exploring a possible mapping as he describes which sounds very vibrant and complimentary to science.

I can very clearly with proof, explain your question regarding the music and its fully reduced mechanism for influence, and may.. in a way have a relating value to this specific area as you explain. I think its a good essay (also... esp getting the god idea in this out of the lab)

If this starts up somewhere else in taking G's lead, I will notice if it re surface's and answer this question in time I guess. Other than that its been interesting.

Last edited by stargazzer; 05-29-2013 at 01:51 PM..
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Old 05-29-2013, 06:28 PM
 
Location: Kent, Ohio
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Originally Posted by MissionIMPOSSIBRU View Post
Classical Theism: Belief in God as a personal being that is 'causally prior' to the existence of the universe (space-time and its contents).

This is consistent with the Abrahamic monotheisms and deism; but not pantheism, panentheism nor eastern mystical and early greco-roman polytheisms.

Atheism: Belief that "theism is false"; the denial of the existence of God, or any person such as God.
I don't know if I ever tried to answer the actual OP question, but I'll give it a quick shot now. I'm happy to accept the definitions as given above. Given these definitions, I'd say that atheism is the most logical choice.

Logic, in short, is the study of the principles of reasoning. The basic idea is to find some objective criteria for distinguishing good arguments from bad arguments based on the structures of the arguments, and the empirical evidence for and against the "existence claims" (either implicit or explicit) that the argument depends on. All of the scientifically supported evidence that I know of implies that intelligence is found only in complex physical processes. I have argued ad nauseum in this thread that physical processes are not 100% reducible to purely objective properties, but I have also consistently said that physical processes are nearly 100% constituted by objective properties. I think it would be outlandishly implausible to claim that there is any physical process that is not, at least to some extent, composed of objectively-existing entities. If God is thought to be 'causally prior' to the existence of the universe (space-time and its contents), then the theist immediately has a big logical problem: One would have to believe that some sort of intelligent "personal being" existed prior to the physical processes of the universe, but we have no reliable evidence at all for believing that non-physical intelligence exists.

Now, to be fair, the OP definition of theism does not specify that God is intelligent, but everything I just said about intelligence can also be applied to everything that falls under the general notion of sentience (emotions, sensations, etc.) I think it is safe to say that the idea of a "personal being" who is not, to some extent, sentient is an abuse of the term "personal being."

I'm NOT saying that God can't exist. I think the existence of God is a logical possibility and I think it is perfectly fine to have faith in some versions of God. But I would insist that it is faith or intuition, or mystical insight that one must rely on - not logical arguments to the conclusion that God must exist, and not some mish-mash of sketchy empirical claims (e.g., some wood found on a mountain top supports the literal truth of the Bible, etc.).

All in all, I think it is more logical to believe that theism (of the "classical sort" defined above) is false than it is to believe that theism is true. And, BTW, the more tightly a particular brand of theism is tied to specific ancient holy texts, the more logically problematic the theism becomes (to the point that I think that a literal interpretation of the Christian Bible is utterly absurd).

Bottom line: It can be perfectly reasonable to believe in the existence of things that one cannot directly see (various theoretical entities in science fall into this category), but belief in these things really should stem from some reasonably reliable objective signs, along with an overall compatibility with accepted scientific theories. Plain and simple: Given what we know about the ease with which our minds can be deceived by wishful thinking, brain-washing techniques (including general cultural brain-washing), chemical imbalances, etc., the most logical approach to unseen entities is to weight the scientific evidence. God really doesn't weight much on this scale.

But, having said all of this, I do have to admit that I am somewhat of a mystic, and I do actually meditate/pray, despite the fact that I am an atheist according to the above definitions. Thus, both atheists and theist can find ways to hate me in their own favorite ways.
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