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Posted: 11 December 2007 12:11 PM   [ Ignore ]  
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[ Edited: 13 December 2007 02:10 PM by Yahsene]
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Posted: 11 December 2007 12:47 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]  
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Well, the term ego in my mind is a bit vague so I am not really sure I understand what you are getting at, are you talking about consciousness in or self awareness as specific concepts?

If that is the case then ofcourse consciousness is a subjective experience since you cannot experience anyone else’s self awareness, and I doubt that in the simplest of terms there is no difference. But its all chemical and electrical processes within the brain in the sense that if you kill the brain, self awareness stops, ofcourse you could philosophically argue that this is a leap but like god there is no reason to believe that the conscience is separated from the brain in any way. There have been experiments that show for example that if you numb the activity in certain areas of the brain, the patient goes unconscious.

We may not be able to specifically explain the process of consciousness yet, but its very obvious that it is a process of the brain.

I’d argue though that on a subjective level, the sense of self is obviously real because we are directly experiencing being self aware, this is very different from experiencing god, unless you are god in which case things would be different.

At the moment there is no evidence to suggest that anything within our thinking is generated anywhere except the brain, the same would go with self awareness and conscience.
I have a suspicion on this matter, I suspect that it is possible that the consciousness is actually not really a process of the brain, but a bi product of the brain. Its been suggested more and more recently since neuroscience is starting to realize that there is no one place in the brain where self awareness is located. If our self awareness is just a side effect of the many processes occurring in the complex brain, this is going to really send the religious nuts in a rage though. I am dreading the moral debates if this discovery would be made ><

My belief (I cannot prove this, so it cannot be called knowledge as of yet) is that we all share a singular consciousness which has manifested all material forms (including the bodies which come and go) and that this singular consciousness is behind everything (from within us, for lack of a better way of wording it).

Does that make sense at all?

Well, that part did not make sense, unless you are stating it as a thought experiment but you state it as if you believe this to actually be the case which means I have to ask you why you’ve come to that conclusion. Since if there is no observation to back the belief up, then its not really different than belief in a god. This seems very metaphysical to me with nothing to really suggest it to be the case.

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Posted: 11 December 2007 01:12 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]  
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[ Edited: 13 December 2007 02:10 PM by Yahsene]
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Posted: 11 December 2007 01:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]  
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Yahsene - 11 December 2007 05:11 PM

We know that the idea of the ego exists because it interacts with its surroundings. There is a consciousness behind the ego. That’s not the question. The question is whether there is such a thing as an authentic identity/ego. Is it real in the objective sense or is it only subjectively real? If you say that it is objectively real . . . then you have to prove it because I’m saying no and it is your duty to prove that it exists, just as the Theist must prove God exists. If you say that it is subjectively real, but real nonetheless . . . well, then the same can be said about God (and angels/demons/fairies/goblins/Santa Clause, the Easter Bunny, Binkers, etc).

Although I don’t consider myself a “hard” atheist, I will attempt an answer…

As a practical matter, reality is what we perceive with our senses. There is no evidence or indication that there is some “true” or “super” reality that lies beyond our senses. Is it possible that we are living in a Matrix? We would never know it, so the possibility isn’t worth considering.

Your point about reality isn’t applicable to claims about deity. Some people claim to have experiences that seem to transcend reality as perceived by the senses. However, these experiences do not constitute evidence for deity or the supernatural. The burden of proof is on people who claim that such experiences are not rooted in our brains or do not have some other natural cause. The existence of deity hasn’t been established outside of those experiences. The likely explanation is that people simply frame the experiences as “spiritual” because of their religious or cultural background.

Yahsene - 11 December 2007 05:11 PM

My belief (I cannot prove this, so it cannot be called knowledge as of yet) is that we all share a singular consciousness which has manifested all material forms (including the bodies which come and go) and that this singular consciousness is behind everything (from within us, for lack of a better way of wording it).

How did you come up with that belief? Pardon my French, but if you have no evidence or indication for such a singular consciousness, I see no point in considering the possibility except as a strange intellectual exercise.

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Posted: 11 December 2007 01:49 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]  
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I have to be honest with you I started writing replies to every claim made in this previous post and I am sorry but this post is littered with New Age metaphysics that really cannot be separated from religious faith metaphysics. You can normally identify most new age ideas by an excessive use of the word “energy”, I call it energy mysticism. Energy is always this vague mystical power that is utilized in whatever metaphysical claim, and such claims generally attribute a lot of qualities to energy that is no where near scientific.

You are making various claims about things that are completely taken out of thin air, and making “is it possible” questions that are not scientific because there is no falsifiability. Essentially they are indifferent from religious claims.

“In physics and other sciences, energy (from the Greek ???????, energos, “active, working”) is a scalar physical quantity that is a property of objects and systems which is conserved by nature. Several different forms, such as kinetic, potential, thermal, electromagnetic, chemical, nuclear, and mass have been defined to explain all known natural phenomena.”

The questions you make are for a neurocientist to answer really and not just someone who is an atheist.

If you do not see the lack of science in saying that maybe consciousness moves energy in the brain. Thats metaphysics, not science.

And for the record there has been many investigations into paranormal phenomena. There are no evidence for half the claims you make, ghosts, telepathic connections etc. Only subjective stories, and the other half of your claims are based on the assumption that the first unproven half are true.

You extrapolate that energy can has consciousness since ghosts are energy and they have consciousness? Do I really need to explain whats wrong with that statement?

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Posted: 11 December 2007 02:01 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]  
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Yahsene - 11 December 2007 06:12 PM

1. We can experience another person’s consciousness if we are in touch with that person deeply enough. In fact, we can be on one side of the world and feel the death of a loved one on the other side of the world. There have been numerous instances in which identical twins have experienced this, mothers with their children, and even lovers or friends. This cannot be explained through the scientific study of matter. We know that all energy is connected, so there is no doubt that if an energy shift occurs and one is sensitive enough then they can experience that shift, but something has to be conscious.

If such experiences are authentic, the probable explanation would be a natural one instead of a supernatural one. We don’t understand everything about matter and energy. It’s certainly possible that there is connection between identical twins that has a completely natural cause, one that we might someday discover empirically. So there’s no need to bother with spiritual notions about consciousness.

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Posted: 11 December 2007 02:04 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]  
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[ Edited: 13 December 2007 02:10 PM by Yahsene]
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Posted: 11 December 2007 02:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]  
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[ Edited: 13 December 2007 02:09 PM by Yahsene]
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Posted: 11 December 2007 02:15 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]  
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Yahsene - 11 December 2007 07:04 PM

What do you mean by a “Deity”?

The idea of a conscious being or beings that exist beyond the senses runs through many religions, especially the Western and Abrahamic ones. Even many deists believe in a conscious First Cause. There is no evidence to support claims about such beings.

Yahsene - 11 December 2007 05:11 PM

I’d rather not get into that. It’s not important.

Why not? Your claim about the existence of a single universal consciousness is a claim about the physical universe. Any such claims must be grounded in empiricism and not in belief. It might possibily be philosophically useful to talk about a single consciousness as a metaphor and not a physical reality, but that does not seem to be your intention. The idea is that physical reality exists regardless of such ephemeral notions as “belief.”

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Posted: 11 December 2007 02:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]  
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[ Edited: 13 December 2007 02:09 PM by Yahsene]
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Posted: 11 December 2007 02:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]  
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I already did answer that. What you mean with ego is as far as I can tell your perception of self. My answer is that there is no reason to believe that this is not a product of the brain.

I will put it even simpler, there is no reason to believe that any aspect of human mentality is created trough a different way than the rest, which is trough biochemical and electrical interactions in the brain. Actually, you cannot prove that your self perception is different from others either because you can never be someone else and then compare. Hence its a purely subjective question.

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Posted: 11 December 2007 02:39 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]  
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[ Edited: 13 December 2007 02:08 PM by Yahsene]
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Posted: 11 December 2007 02:50 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]  
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Yahsene, Yahun or whoever: your knowledge of history is overconfident-underinformed, and your multiple identities are obnoxious. Come into yourself educationally, then consider your choices as to where to elicit agreement in the world. At least come up with a cyber-identity that seems intellectually competent. How many names have you portrayed here? I count 4, but that may be an underestimate.

Hint: when you finally decide on a name/identity, refrain from making ridiculous claims and asking ill-formed, stoned-out questions.

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Philosophy may in no way interfere with the actual use of language; it can in the end only describe it. For it cannot give it any foundations either. It leaves everything as it is.
Ludwig Wittgenstein

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Posted: 11 December 2007 02:52 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]  
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The same way you can create thoughts, opinions, values, questions.

These are constructs of the mind, the same as the idea of god, ofcourse god is a conscious construct, while self awareness is not. They are nevertheless merely perceptions generated by the processes of the brain.

Our brain can create the concept of god, we cannot create god no less than we can create a rock or bend a spoon with our mind. We can do mental constructs. They are not real outside ourself. Which is actually true for consciousness and self awareness too, your self perception is unique to your brain, and your self awareness can not exist outside your brain.

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Posted: 11 December 2007 03:19 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]  
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[ Edited: 13 December 2007 02:08 PM by Yahsene]
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Posted: 11 December 2007 03:20 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]  
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[ Edited: 13 December 2007 02:08 PM by Yahsene]
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