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Is the Soul a Myth?
Posted 8/28/08 , edited 8/28/08

myschiefbaybee wrote:
If we made a robot very much like ourselves, I would be apt to bestow it with feelings as much as any living being.


Of course if such a being were ever to be created, I'd respect its existence, and I think even while knowing that the emotions that this artificially made being is showing, I would still accept these feelings, somehow. But I am not sure if I would be ever able to accept it as a "real" life. Well, but I guess it's hard to tell, since all of this is based on a mere hypothetical basis. But knowing my character, I don't tend to abuse/mistreat beings that are different, or weaker.


Hm. I went to the contemporary art museum in my city a few months ago and they had a computer program creating art. The memory is vague. I see this question more about creativity and expressing concepts (emotionally charged ones) within a pattern of music, paint, etc. And I think robots can create.


Of course a robot can create, but can a robot create out of an emotion? A many artist's creations are based on their emotions, and feelings that they went through while creating their art work. So that was my question. I guess for a robot it will be easy to copy the basic characteristics of a human being, copy someone's work, etc. But creating its own work? Don't think so. At least not an emotionally charged one.



Lol, yeah, shock...my folk is crazyyyyyyy xD j/k I think that the end result of this project might be very interesting An artificially created brain, hmm


zendude wrote:

Well, could you?


Not everybody has the talent for music, or for art, everybody has their own individual interests, and is devoted to something else. And since I never spent any time with music, such as composing a song, or something like that, I doubt that I could do something like that...but with the right talent, and devotion everything is possible :)

Meh, the point was, if a robot would be able to create a piece of art which wouldn't sound artificial, but real, filled with emotions, etc. and that without copying the pattern of some other artist's work..

Floetry~

PS: How the hell did this turn out into an A.I. discussion xD
Posted 8/28/08

zendude wrote:

A.I. Discussion "LAWL"
Maybe the only way we could learn more about the soul is to make an artificial one. I don't know.

It is really hard to be purely creative these days. A person has to base their work out of something, like patterns and precedents. Again with this question, are emulations comparable with this so called "real" thing that we have, if we too base our works on something.

"LAWL"


Hmm, true, a lot of artists nowadays are partly copying the works of precedent artists...

But do you think that there will be ever a robot Beethoven? That would be awesome xD

Floetry~
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Posted 8/28/08
Yay, off-topic discussions!
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Posted 8/28/08

I-Killerbee-I wrote:
Of course a robot can create, but can a robot create out of an emotion? A many artist's creations are based on their emotions, and feelings that they went through while creating their art work. So that was my question. I guess for a robot it will be easy to copy the basic characteristics of a human being, copy someone's work, etc. But creating its own work? Don't think so. At least not an emotionally charged one.

Interesting. The processes needed would be the robot's recognition of it's own emotion (I call it the robot's own emotion because its the one running the program of internalizing external data) and the ability to recreate this emotion through an artistic medium. I'd call the second one a sort of creative potential/wish to create. Perhaps this robot watches how humans create when stimulated/inspired, and can recognize when inspiration comes to it - then, make a choice to create or not to create. Where does this need to create arise from? Early humans only created when they needed to - tools. It took a long time for humans to create just for the sake of creating, an interesting development. One that a few animals have shown a talent in =D I'd say for a robot, they'd have to go through a similar track as the evolutionary history of human technology.

How the hell did this turn out into an A.I. discussion xD

haha i totally called this out with my There are people who try to find the definition of a soul in comparing the subtle nuances that differentiate our brains from computers. comment on my post on page 2
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Posted 8/28/08

zendude wrote:


crunchypibb wrote:

As with anything there must be a purpose to life. To those who think otherwise, please commit suicide to prove your point. One's life is not worth living without a purpose or a goal. Random existance is out of the question. Honestly, I don't know how people even think that's true.
As I was saying, there is a soul. But then what is the purpose of a soul? It is to build and train it's character so that we can eventually reach God. When our bodies die our souls do not and they either go to heaven, hell, or purgatory. That's my short explaination for it.
So for those athiests who do believe in a soul, I would like to know what you think it does and what happens to it after your body dies.


So are you actually referring to this?

"Belief in God or the practice of religion is not necessary in order for people to be highly moral beings. We can agree with soft-core atheists [Samuel Harris, Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens] on this point. But the real question, which comes not from me but from the hard-core atheists [Marx, Nietzsche and Freud], is: Can you rationally justify your unconditional adherence to timeless values without implicitly invoking the existence of a ["GOD"] [thus ultimately accepting nothingness]?"

This quote is from:
Haught J. Amateur atheists.Christian Century Foundation; 2008. p. 22-29. [cited August 28, 2008]


That wasn't what I was asking....
I was asking about who atheists people who believe in the existance of a soul. It wasn't really a God question at all. I was mentioning this because some people who don't believe in God still like to ponder about the existance of a soul. If there was people like that.
In order to understand God you first have to have some understanding about the soul and the soul world, the invisible so to speak. Humans are what we call "third eye blind" meaning you can never feel 'pure' spirituality. Sometimes you can feel spirituality through bodily sensations but this is not always the case.
I will leave it at that so everyone who is reading this, give it a thought. Is this world just what we feel through our 5 senses?
Posted 8/28/08

myschiefbaybee wrote:


I-Killerbee-I wrote:
Of course a robot can create, but can a robot create out of an emotion? A many artist's creations are based on their emotions, and feelings that they went through while creating their art work. So that was my question. I guess for a robot it will be easy to copy the basic characteristics of a human being, copy someone's work, etc. But creating its own work? Don't think so. At least not an emotionally charged one.

Interesting. The processes needed would be the robot's recognition of it's own emotion (I call it the robot's own emotion because its the one running the program of internalizing external data) and the ability to recreate this emotion through an artistic medium. I'd call the second one a sort of creative potential/wish to create. Perhaps this robot watches how humans create when stimulated/inspired, and can recognize when inspiration comes to it - then, make a choice to create or not to create. Where does this need to create arise from? Early humans only created when they needed to - tools. It took a long time for humans to create just for the sake of creating, an interesting development. One that a few animals have shown a talent in =D I'd say for a robot, they'd have to go through a similar track as the evolutionary history of human technology.

How the hell did this turn out into an A.I. discussion xD

haha i totally called this out with my There are people who try to find the definition of a soul in comparing the subtle nuances that differentiate our brains from computers. comment on my post on page 2


WRONG!

ok, so not all wrong. but the "humans only created what was neeeded" isnt true. homonids have been creating aesthetics for as long as there have been homo sapiens. language was not necissary, paintings, funeral rites, carved trinkets and such. these were made when they had spare time. THIS was the truly interesting developement. spare time. it enabled us to finally think about the world at large, which increased the size of our brain from that point, to what it is now. the human skull holds roughly 1050cc of liquid and mushy brain. throughout our evolution, it has grown out of necessity to survive, until this point. the homo sapiens, (we are sapien sapien) were flourishing and surviving. they did not need this to survive. they needed this to think.

it was also around this time that the idea of the soul came in to play. i dont believe in the soul, of any kind of context. we are machines with chemicals and electrical signals, just like computers. the only difference is we have been evolving for over a billion years. they have not. give it a billion years, if humans are still around, machines will have life, and as much "soul" as we do. except, ofcourse parliament and funkadelic, who have more soul than the rest of mankind put together.
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Posted 8/28/08

zendude wrote:
- So does creating an artificial human (Homo Sapien Modus Genea), via genetic engineering, count as an Artificial Intelligence?
Of course this is based on the transitive definition of human manipulating things that are not natural.
- Again, sorry for the redundancy. So reprogramming both machine and the human machine, does that equate of them being both artificial?

Genetic Engineering starts out with what's already existing as a template (dolly the sheep, flo the human, nick the bird), whereas Artificial Intelligence doesn't have be made of organic matter necessarily....I guess my opinion is that what's being manipulated in the genetic engineering is 'natural', whereas machines aren't >.<

haddon wrote: humans only created what was neeeded" isnt true. homonids have been creating aesthetics for as long as there have been homo sapiens. language was not necissary, paintings, funeral rites, carved trinkets and such. these were made when they had spare time.

I define humans as all the species under Homo, so the first tools come a million+ years before the first appearance of any art/ritual/trinkets. Yes archaic Homo Sapiens didn't show up in the fossil record with their creations right away, but how can you say when they started having leisure time? Still open debate on whether they finally had the leisure time, or whether they finally chose to express it.

i dont believe in the soul, of any kind of context. we are machines with chemicals and electrical signals, just like computers. the only difference is we have been evolving for over a billion years. they have not. give it a billion years, if humans are still around, machines will have life, and as much "soul" as we do. except, ofcourse parliament and funkadelic, who have more soul than the rest of mankind put together.

I think what I've already discussed aligns with Nick's beliefs. But I prefer my way of wording it But we do differ on the definition of soul, I suppose. I do believe in a sort of awareness D: none of that floating invisible outer entity stuff though >.<
Posted 8/29/08

myschiefbaybee wrote:


zendude wrote:
- So does creating an artificial human (Homo Sapien Modus Genea), via genetic engineering, count as an Artificial Intelligence?
Of course this is based on the transitive definition of human manipulating things that are not natural.
- Again, sorry for the redundancy. So reprogramming both machine and the human machine, does that equate of them being both artificial?

Genetic Engineering starts out with what's already existing as a template (dolly the sheep, flo the human, nick the bird), whereas Artificial Intelligence doesn't have be made of organic matter necessarily....I guess my opinion is that what's being manipulated in the genetic engineering is 'natural', whereas machines aren't >.<

haddon wrote: humans only created what was neeeded" isnt true. homonids have been creating aesthetics for as long as there have been homo sapiens. language was not necissary, paintings, funeral rites, carved trinkets and such. these were made when they had spare time.

I define humans as all the species under Homo, so the first tools come a million+ years before the first appearance of any art/ritual/trinkets. Yes archaic Homo Sapiens didn't show up in the fossil record with their creations right away, but how can you say when they started having leisure time? Still open debate on whether they finally had the leisure time, or whether they finally chose to express it.

i dont believe in the soul, of any kind of context. we are machines with chemicals and electrical signals, just like computers. the only difference is we have been evolving for over a billion years. they have not. give it a billion years, if humans are still around, machines will have life, and as much "soul" as we do. except, ofcourse parliament and funkadelic, who have more soul than the rest of mankind put together.

I think what I've already discussed aligns with Nick's beliefs. But I prefer my way of wording it But we do differ on the definition of soul, I suppose. I do believe in a sort of awareness D: none of that floating invisible outer entity stuff though >.<



so you are claiming that anything post-austrolapithecus had some sort of soul, and was human? despite that erectus was much closer to a modern ape than they were structurally to us, they were human? i would have to disagree, because if someone had a child with 1, it would not look, think, act like us. if the 2 species could even interbreed. which i highly doubt.

leisure came with the ability to outwit predators with natural advantages. if you dont have to spend your entire existence fleeing from death, or hunting, there is leisure. just as apes have now (there are far fewer deadly things to a chimpanzee now than there were for an austrolapithecus). with no humans in the picture, apes would evolve again, assuming nothing extraordinary happened. the same rites of sorts would take place. different names, languages, gods perhaps, the same basic ideas. if humans died out, something near-human would come again.
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Posted 8/30/08
soul... is true... one of the unexplainable phenomena of mankind...

you experience conscience... but can you explain it?

you have life... but can you explain why there is life and its origin?

you have a God... but can you explain how HE came to be?
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Posted 8/30/08
Who doesn't believe in a soul? I'm bored and I feel like debating.
But seriously, I think the soul is the entity that can make people change who they are. It's the thing that makes people break away from drugs if the soul is strong enough. After learning about the brain, it doesn't seem like the brain can do that on its own.
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I believe that we have eternal souls, that it is not physical and is separate from the body and not dependent upon it. Our souls are who we are. Our souls are what give us the capabilities to love. I believe that God created our souls.
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Posted 8/30/08 , edited 8/30/08

crunchypibb wrote:

Who doesn't believe in a soul? I'm bored and I feel like debating.
But seriously, I think the soul is the entity that can make people change who they are. It's the thing that makes people break away from drugs if the soul is strong enough. After learning about the brain, it doesn't seem like the brain can do that on its own.


Soul is an outdated and vague term. Just as many psychological disorders used to be called 'demons' or possessions in the past, once our understanding of the human body and its psychology grew, the terms of the past were replaced by more factual terms.

The idea of the soul is not quite at that same level since it is a much more complex thing, not only for its broadness but because of our limited knowledge of the 'Self' and what it constitutes. Now the words Self, soul and consciousness are used interchangeably. soul happens to be the most widespread of them.

You say after learning about the brain, well learning how much exactly? our knowledge of the brain is on its infantile stages, and very few people really have an idea of how the brain seems to work because it is a subject that requires a lot of time to invest on.
And even those people have a long way to go; so to assume or to conclude that somehow this limit of information does not tell us much about consciousness, AND therefore the idea of a soul is solid, is not logical.

I find it quite desperate to rely on such vague concepts such as the soul, concepts where you can pretty much fit anything to it in order to satisfy that need to explain what is going on, what defines YOU as a being. I can assure you that if men did not generally jumped into the first thing that helps cover that gap, that hole in our knowledge which we desperately seek to cover in order to feel comfortable once again in our reality and somehow men usually think these kinds of concepts are satisfactory. If instead we could deal with the fact that doubt is not necessarily a bad thing and questions of this nature should constantly be worked on instead of settling for whatever thing vague enough to fill the whole gap, a lot of really silly assumptions will have never persisted this long.

I hope next time you decide to talk about a soul, you give your definition because as I have said, the word is used interchangeably with other words.

And the matter is not only whether you believe in it or not, a more important question is: what defines it? Statements like 'we have a soul and is who we are, and god made it and it will go to heaven or hell when we die' does not really contribute much to the latter.
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Posted 8/31/08

mauz15 wrote:

Soul is an outdated and vague term. Just as many psychological disorders used to be called 'demons' or possessions in the past, once our understanding of the human body and its psychology grew, the terms of the past were replaced by more factual terms.


It's not outdated and it's not vague, it's just misunderstood because science gives little understanding to the topic. Philosophers still consider the concept today and hadn't thrown it out the window like pragmatism and nihilism.



The idea of the soul is not quite at that same level since it is a much more complex thing, not only for its broadness but because of our limited knowledge of the 'Self' and what it constitutes. Now the words Self, soul and consciousness are used interchangeably. soul happens to be the most widespread of them.

First you said the soul was vague then you said it's a complex thing. Wha?
Conciousness is considered an invisible entity like the soul and two might actually be related. Materialist can never explain the concept of conciousness and say it's fundamentally confused, but that just doesn't make sense because I can't escape the fact that I am indeed conciously aware of myself.



You say after learning about the brain, well learning how much exactly? our knowledge of the brain is on its infantile stages, and very few people really have an idea of how the brain seems to work because it is a subject that requires a lot of time to invest on.
And even those people have a long way to go; so to assume or to conclude that somehow this limit of information does not tell us much about consciousness, AND therefore the idea of a soul is solid, is not logical.

That doesn't conclude that the soul is solid just because we hadn't fully developed our brain like you said. I do acknowledge that humans, in theory, can heal themselves of physcial ailment and disease and break physical limits with the brain. But why we don't all do it like at the point of death is still in question.



I find it quite desperate to rely on such vague concepts such as the soul, concepts where you can pretty much fit anything to it in order to satisfy that need to explain what is going on, what defines YOU as a being. I can assure you that if men did not generally jumped into the first thing that helps cover that gap, that hole in our knowledge which we desperately seek to cover in order to feel comfortable once again in our reality and somehow men usually think these kinds of concepts are satisfactory. If instead we could deal with the fact that doubt is not necessarily a bad thing and questions of this nature should constantly be worked on instead of settling for whatever thing vague enough to fill the whole gap, a lot of really silly assumptions will have never persisted this long.

True, men do grasp the first conclusion that comes up to them but some of us do in fact continue to question the concept and try to see from the opposing view. Like what I'm doing in this debate. Realize this is the debate between a duelist (me) and a materialist (you). You're saying that because we don't have all the evidence that it means the soul isn't existant. But what it really means is that we don't know it all yet and you don't either. Just because I'm wrong doesn't mean you're right.



I hope next time you decide to talk about a soul, you give your definition because as I have said, the word is used interchangeably with other words.

Well I was just starting a debate, I didn't want to list a lot in case nobody responded : / There's a lot I could say but I usually don't know where to start so I just wait for my opponent first.



And the matter is not only whether you believe in it or not, a more important question is: what defines it? Statements like 'we have a soul and is who we are, and god made it and it will go to heaven or hell when we die' does not really contribute much to the latter.

Well the concept of a soul almost never makes sense to an atheist because of what you said above. Besides the fact that our souls will go to heaven or hell, the brain is merely an engine. It doesn't control itself, if it did then that would mean the brain would randomly fire neurons causing randomness. That doesn't make sense. Besides, there's a meaning to what we do, even when we decide to be spontaneous. So what's the driver?
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Posted 8/31/08

crunchypibb wrote:

It's not outdated and it's not vague, it's just misunderstood because science gives little understanding to the topic. Philosophers still consider the concept today and hadn't thrown it out the window like pragmatism and nihilism.


First of all, notice i said that the TERM was outdated, not the concept. As for vagueness, of course it is. Let's see, a metaphysical entity which we cannot measure but somehow makes part of us and even if it is, or is not separate from the body, an interaction seems to take place between the two. That is not vague?

And this is one of the many the philosophical descriptions. (again, by the fact that many conflicting descriptions on this exist on philosophy, it adds more to the vagueness) the religious descriptions are way more broad. Such as 'immaterial aspect or essence/spirit of a person. Yeah that's SO not open to interpretations, otherwise we would find different takes depending on the religion....oh wait! we do! funny that.




First you said the soul was vague then you said it's a complex thing. Wha?
Conciousness is considered an invisible entity like the soul and two might actually be related. Materialist can never explain the concept of conciousness and say it's fundamentally confused, but that just doesn't make sense because I can't escape the fact that I am indeed conciously aware of myself.


Once again, I said I am considering the terms consciousness, soul, personal identity, and self as interchangeable. The afterlife aspects of the soul do not concern me at this time, that could be addressed separately. Consciousness is considered a lot of things, that is why it's an ongoing philosophical problem. Do not limit the definition so much.




That doesn't conclude that the soul is solid just because we hadn't fully developed our brain like you said. I do acknowledge that humans, in theory, can heal themselves of physcial ailment and disease and break physical limits with the brain. But why we don't all do it like at the point of death is still in question.



ok what are you talking about? I said the idea of the soul found in your post, not the actual soul as being solid. By solid idea i meant a sound idea. something that follows logically from the statements made. Which I did not found in your post hence I pointed it out.

Secondly, nowhere in my post was the development of our brain mentioned. As for the part about healing, it does not interest me. I dont see how finding this out, answers anything about the essence of consciousness/soul. There are physics and chemical principles applying here when it comes to death, decay, and health.



True, men do grasp the first conclusion that comes up to them but some of us do in fact continue to question the concept and try to see from the opposing view. Like what I'm doing in this debate. Realize this is the debate between a duelist (me) and a materialist (you). You're saying that because we don't have all the evidence that it means the soul isn't existant. But what it really means is that we don't know it all yet and you don't either. Just because I'm wrong doesn't mean you're right.


You generally assumed way too much before replying to my post =P
First of all, I never said you were one of the people who cling to the first explanation they come about. It was a general statement about the term 'soul' and the fact that most people never question the nature of it.

Second, point me out where is the evidence that shows I am a materialist? Did I ever say the soul was only material?
I have never taken any positions on this thread about the nature of this question. I do not feel prepared enough to claim I am a materialist or a dualist like you do. not only is the subject still being highly debated by all sides, but there is little consensus even among each side, since there are several types of dualist (such as substance dualism, property dualism, etc) and different types of materialists, and so on.

There is way too many works I feel I need to read and understand, as well as advances in neurology to be reached before considering a side on this matter.



Well the concept of a soul almost never makes sense to an atheist because of what you said above. Besides the fact that our souls will go to heaven or hell, the brain is merely an engine. It doesn't control itself, if it did then that would mean the brain would randomly fire neurons causing randomness. That doesn't make sense. Besides, there's a meaning to what we do, even when we decide to be spontaneous. So what's the driver?


The brain is just beginning to be understood, do you really know what you are talking about? you claim is merely an engine, mind backing up the claim with some sources?

If it DID control itself, does not necessarily follow that it will randomly fire neurons and therefore cause randomness. Probable? yes, but not definite.
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Posted 8/31/08 , edited 8/31/08

mauz15 wrote:
First of all, notice i said that the TERM was outdated, not the concept. As for vagueness, of course it is. Let's see, a metaphysical entity which we cannot measure but somehow makes part of us and even if it is, or is not separate from the body, an interaction seems to take place between the two. That is not vague?

And this is one of the many the philosophical descriptions. (again, by the fact that many conflicting descriptions on this exist on philosophy, it adds more to the vagueness) the religious descriptions are way more broad. Such as 'immaterial aspect or essence/spirit of a person. Yeah that's SO not open to interpretations, otherwise we would find different takes depending on the religion....oh wait! we do! funny that.

What are you gonna call the term now, George Lucas? What you said didn't make sense :/
As for theories for what a soul is, are there not many theories in science that have not been made into 'law'. There are many religions (all claim they are right) but there obviously can only be one. So there is only one true definition of the soul, we just don't know with our knowledge. It's the reason we keep searching, because it's worth it. I think I said earlier that materialist cannot explain conciousness so there has to be some invisible entity that is the conciousness. As for the religions, I don't know where you got the idea of different concepts of the soul. Religion in general doesn't really explain much about how the soul works, just what happens to it.



Once again, I said I am considering the terms consciousness, soul, personal identity, and self as interchangeable. The afterlife aspects of the soul do not concern me at this time, that could be addressed separately. Consciousness is considered a lot of things, that is why it's an ongoing philosophical problem. Do not limit the definition so much.

Was I limiting it? Seriously, what's the difference between the soul and conciousness, none. The conciousness is part of the soul and the soul is what projects conciousness. They're interelated for a reason, like the two concepts of purpose and meaning.



ok what are you talking about? I said the idea of the soul found in your post, not the actual soul as being solid. By solid idea i meant a sound idea. something that follows logically from the statements made. Which I did not found in your post hence I pointed it out.

Secondly, nowhere in my post was the development of our brain mentioned. As for the part about healing, it does not interest me. I dont see how finding this out, answers anything about the essence of consciousness/soul. There are physics and chemical principles applying here when it comes to death, decay, and health.

Whatever, I'll drop it for your sake. I probably read your post wrong.



You generally assumed way too much before replying to my post =P
First of all, I never said you were one of the people who cling to the first explanation they come about. It was a general statement about the term 'soul' and the fact that most people never question the nature of it.

Second, point me out where is the evidence that shows I am a materialist? Did I ever say the soul was only material?
I have never taken any positions on this thread about the nature of this question. I do not feel prepared enough to claim I am a materialist or a dualist like you do. not only is the subject still being highly debated by all sides, but there is little consensus even among each side, since there are several types of dualist (such as substance dualism, property dualism, etc) and different types of materialists, and so on.

There is way too many works I feel I need to read and understand, as well as advances in neurology to be reached before considering a side on this matter.

I know you weren't refering to me, I was speaking for a general crowd as well. Well I say you're a materialist because you are questioning the existance of a soul. I didn't mean that you were entirely a materialist, it just meant you're arguing for them on this specific topic. There is no such thing as 'neutral' when it comes to these topics, my bad for labelling you. But you'll never find out about the dualist perspective about the soul through neurology. Science only questions the visible, and the soul is not that. You'll have to get into philosophy if you want to know about the arguements from materialist and dualist sides.



Well the concept of a soul almost never makes sense to an atheist because of what you said above. Besides the fact that our souls will go to heaven or hell, the brain is merely an engine. It doesn't control itself, if it did then that would mean the brain would randomly fire neurons causing randomness. That doesn't make sense. Besides, there's a meaning to what we do, even when we decide to be spontaneous. So what's the driver?


The brain is just beginning to be understood, do you really know what you are talking about? you claim is merely an engine, mind backing up the claim with some sources?

If it DID control itself, does not necessarily follow that it will randomly fire neurons and therefore cause randomness. Probable? yes, but not definite.


Consider this, there is purpose in everything we do. All material things on earth have determined properties. There is the factor of probability in chemistry but 1 hydrogen and 2 oxygens will always make water will it not? So pretty much everything is controlled. Determinism and control go hand in hand as randomess and no control go together. The function of human heart and the lungs are controlled by the brain, involuntary action. If the brain does not control these things we will die because if the organs functioned independently there is little chance for us to live.
So the question is, can the brain control itself? If it could that means we have no free will whatsoever. It wouldn't matter what we conciously think, reason would be rendered a useless term and an illusion. All in all, this arguement could be completely against my concious belief but my brain and fingers would say otherwise and I would never understand them. But that never happens, even if we don't understand our actions we do eventually figure out why and it become obvious to us.
So the question is what drives us to do the impossible? What gets us to quite drugs and make life changing decisions? If my last paragraph was wrong and indeed the brain could do such things, then we could figure out patterns when you're born such as if you will turn gay in a specific situation or if you will be a homocide if you witnessed a specific event. But that sounds bogus because like I mentioned earlier, the brain like everything else physical in the world has a determined factor and we would have no free will.


This can all be concluded if you don't add religion or afterlife to the equation. To summarize that, the italicized arguement is general agnostic and considers both sides. Only further study from philosophers using Socratic method can get us closer to the truth for science cannot answer the question about the invisible.
Posted 8/31/08
I go with the physicalist idea. I think people go with the soul thing because we like to believe were more than just physical things working together. We want to believe we're more special than that.
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Posted 8/31/08 , edited 8/31/08


I know you weren't refering to me, I was speaking for a general crowd as well. Well I say you're a materialist because you are questioning the existance of a soul. I didn't mean that you were entirely a materialist, it just meant you're arguing for them on this specific topic. There is no such thing as 'neutral' when it comes to these topics, my bad for labelling you. But you'll never find out about the dualist perspective about the soul through neurology. Science only questions the visible, and the soul is not that. You'll have to get into philosophy if you want to know about the arguements from materialist and dualist sides.


You need to explore philosophical questions more. There are neutral positions.
I don't know what you are reading but my posts have no position on this matter. My positions on this question are not expressed here. I am not arguing for the materialist side. I am only considering all possible facets of the question. Neurology, materialism, religion, and metaphysics are all part of it.

"But you'll never find out about the dualist perspective about the soul through neurology. Science only questions the visible, and the soul is not that."

Mere assumption. Please express it as such instead of daring to use the word 'never'. You don't know how far science can contribute to the topic. And philosophers are following neurology, it is important to this question. From philosophy came the sciences, use them together instead of focusing on just one. The common arguments for the mind body problem and the philosophical takes about the soul, are just half the equation.



Consider this, there is purpose in everything we do. All material things on earth have determined properties. There is the factor of probability in chemistry but 1 hydrogen and 2 oxygens will always make water will it not? So pretty much everything is controlled. Determinism and control go hand in hand as randomess and no control go together. The function of human heart and the lungs are controlled by the brain, involuntary action. If the brain does not control these things we will die because if the organs functioned independently there is little chance for us to live.
So the question is, can the brain control itself? If it could that means we have no free will whatsoever. It wouldn't matter what we conciously think, reason would be rendered a useless term and an illusion. All in all, this arguement could be completely against my concious belief but my brain and fingers would say otherwise and I would never understand them. But that never happens, even if we don't understand our actions we do eventually figure out why and it become obvious to us.
So the question is what drives us to do the impossible? What gets us to quite drugs and make life changing decisions? If my last paragraph was wrong and indeed the brain could do such things, then we could figure out patterns when you're born such as if you will turn gay in a specific situation or if you will be a homocide if you witnessed a specific event. But that sounds bogus because like I mentioned earlier, the brain like everything else physical in the world has a determined factor and we would have no free will.


This can all be concluded if you don't add religion or afterlife to the equation. To summarize that, the italicized arguement is general agnostic and considers both sides. Only further study from philosophers using Socratic method can get us closer to the truth for science cannot answer the question about the invisible.



I considered it and it is full of speculations. Furthermore, the argument needs organization and pattern. You make all these questions but there really isn't any flow to it. not only that but you once again make claims about the brain as if you perfectly understand what is going on. example:

"Indeed the brain could do such things, then we could figure out patterns when you're born such as if you will turn gay in a specific situation or if you will be a homocide if you witnessed a specific event. "

according to whom? you? based on what?

I am done. nice discussion but you need to organize your ideas better and justify them! Way too many claims about the workings of the brain my friend. I have discussed this subject before, have heard the arguments several times, etc, however, I cannot understand half of what you are trying to get to.

I study philosophy constantly, and I suggest you study some philosophy of science and the relation of science and philosophy.
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