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  #11  
Old 13th November 2015, 06:37 PM
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Default Re: Consciousness

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Darwinsbulldog said View Post
Scientific theories are proved, but there is no proof of a scientific theory.
I like the latter part, but not the former. To prove something is to provide proof. Scientific theories aren't proved, they're validated.

To make your point explicit, proof is a formal procedure that applies only to axiomatically complete systems of deductive logic. Scientific theories, being largely inductive, are not proof-apt, except in a very specific sense, which always results in the demise of the theory.
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  #12  
Old 13th November 2015, 06:38 PM
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Default Re: Consciousness

Consciousness is subjective.

We feel it. An outside observer that dissects the brain only sees the agglomeration of neurons and synapses. If neurons and synapses 'pile' up, but other unrelated things pile up too, how do we account for consciousness that exists only because of neurons and synapses?

I would say, there is something specific about neurons and synapses that regulate the consciousness, but not fully validly - just tentatively. I think, consciousness is more specific than that but we do not have knowledge yet to precisely define it.
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  #13  
Old 13th November 2015, 06:42 PM
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Default Re: Consciousness

We really do. There's more than just the agglomeration of neurons and synapses, there's also the electrochemical exchange of information. This fully accounts for it.

The only thing that's really a mystery about consciousness is what motivates so many people to talk such bollocks about it.
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  #14  
Old 13th November 2015, 06:46 PM
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Default Re: Consciousness

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hackenslash said View Post
We really do. There's more than just the agglomeration of neurons and synapses, there's also the electrochemical exchange of information. This fully accounts for it.

The only thing that's really a mystery about consciousness is what motivates so many people to talk such bollocks about it.
What motivates many people to talk so much about it is because they don't know yet the electrochemical exchange of information. Or that they want to invent a possibility that one can leave one's body and possess another body.

I'd like examples of electrochemical exchange of information that exists outside human bodies. If there exists such, that would entail consciousness that exists outside human bodies. Otherwise, if it is fully explained, I'd like to know what accounts for degrees of pain and pleasure, self-awareness, creativity, emotion and so on.

Last edited by Azurisan21; 13th November 2015 at 06:47 PM.
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  #15  
Old 13th November 2015, 06:53 PM
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Default Re: Consciousness

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hackenslash said View Post
I like the latter part, but not the former. To prove something is to provide proof. Scientific theories aren't proved, they're validated.

To make your point explicit, proof is a formal procedure that applies only to axiomatically complete systems of deductive logic. Scientific theories, being largely inductive, are not proof-apt, except in a very specific sense, which always results in the demise of the theory.
Nope. There are two meanings here. To prove can mean to test. A proven theory is one that has been tested. It does not mean it can't be overthrown later, when more evidence comes to light. A proof [as in maths] is absolute.
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  #16  
Old 13th November 2015, 06:58 PM
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Default Re: Consciousness

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Azurisan21 said View Post
I'd like examples of electrochemical exchange of information that exists outside human bodies.
Fire.

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If there exists such, that would entail consciousness that exists outside human bodies.
No, it really wouldn't. Not all electrochemical exchanges form part of that specific process. In any event, we can already see consciousness outside human bodies. Go watch an episode of Meerkat Manor and see it (and moral reasoning and all manner of other social interactions the gullible think are unique to humans) in action.

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Otherwise, if it is fully explained, I'd like to know what accounts for degrees of pain and pleasure, self-awareness, creativity, emotion and so on.
Again, agglomeration. More neurons and synapses = greater degrees of consciousness.

Seriously, it's just like walking it's a behaviour, not a thing. What accounts for degrees of walking?

More importantly, what's the major concern with having an account?
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  #17  
Old 13th November 2015, 07:02 PM
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Default Re: Consciousness

We do know that consciousness exists beyond a certain agglomeration of neurons and synaptic connections, that there is a certain point at which an organism can be considered conscious because we can observe behaviours etc. that indicate this.

But animals that are below this agglomeration of neurons and synaptic connections, how do we know for sure that they are not conscious in some way that we cannot measure? How do we know whether a sophisticated AI system has consciousness - either in the way that we experience consciousness, or in some completely different way? Those are the things that make it interesting to talk about.

Also the fact that different people have very different ideas about consciousness and related concepts makes it interesting to talk about.
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  #18  
Old 13th November 2015, 07:03 PM
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Default Re: Consciousness

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hackenslash said View Post
Fire.
But fire doesn't account for consciousness. It doesn't have consciousness. So, that is why, this disputes the theory that electrochemical exchange of information explains consciousness fully. Hence, it's rejected.

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hackenslash said View Post
No, it really wouldn't. Not all electrochemical exchanges form part of that specific process. In any event, we can already see consciousness outside human bodies. Go watch an episode of Meerkat Manor and see it (and moral reasoning and all manner of other social interactions the gullible think are unique to humans) in action.
Meerkat? I'm not talking about animals - we assume that consciousness exists in organic objects. I'm talking about electrochemical exchanges occurring outside organic objects or in inorganic states.

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hackenslash said View Post
Again, agglomeration. More neurons and synapses = greater degrees of consciousness.

Seriously, it's just like walking it's a behaviour, not a thing. What accounts for degrees of walking?

More importantly, what's the major concern with having an account?
I disagree. More neurons and synapses = greater consciousness? You're saying as if a single neuron/synapse contains a unit of consciousness. I speculate, there exists another system that interconnects neurons/synapses to the other parts of organic body that possibly account for consciousness. Or there exists some conditions for these to activate consciousness.

Last edited by Azurisan21; 13th November 2015 at 07:06 PM.
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  #19  
Old 13th November 2015, 07:19 PM
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Default Re: Consciousness

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Azurisan21 said View Post
But fire doesn't account for consciousness. It doesn't have consciousness. So, that is why, this disputes the theory that electrochemical exchange of information explains consciousness fully. Hence, it's rejected.
I never said it did. Consciousness is, however, fully explained via electrochemical exchange of information between neurons employing synaptic connections.

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Meerkat? I'm not talking about animals - we assume that consciousness exists in organic objects. I'm talking about electrochemical exchanges occurring outside organic objects or in inorganic states.
Well, the only electrochemical exchanges of information resulting in consciousness are those that exist in neural networks, so you're really looking for something that there's no reason to give any credence to.

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I disagree. More neurons and synapses = greater consciousness?
Yep.

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You're saying as if a single neuron/synapse contains a unit of consciousness.
No, because you need an agglomeration. Of what size, nobody knows. You also can't have a pile consisting of a single grain. There are no problems here.

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I speculate, there exists another system that interconnects neurons/synapses to the other parts of organic body that possibly account for consciousness. Or there exists some conditions for these to activate consciousness.
Of what value are these speculations? Whereof the shaving implement of the late, lamented cleric of Surrey?
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  #20  
Old 13th November 2015, 10:29 PM
Spearthrower Spearthrower is offline
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Default Re: Consciousness

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Azurisan21 said View Post
Define consciousness.
Being aware of something external or something internal.


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Is there scientific proof?
I'm not aware of any formal studies on whether consciousness exists, but it's axiomatic in the process of even formulating the question.

However, you could have a friend swing a hammer at your head, and if you move you're conscious!


Quote:
Brain is physical. Scientifically account for pains and pleasures.
Life is something that strives to reproduce itself. Evolution allows organisms to differentially benefit from genetic mutations that help them survive in order to reproduce. An organism that can detect damage to itself is more capable of taking steps to avoid that damage than one which is unable to detect damage.

Pleasure is a bit more difficult in my opinion, and while I am reasonably certain that most animals (and probably plants and possibly even bacteria) have some sense of damage occurring which could reasonably be considered pain even if unlike that which humans feel, pleasure seems to be something that is only definitively observable in mammals. Presumably, doing stuff which is desirable, like eating and fucking, is chemically rewarding to encourage the individual to engage in it - but I am less confident of that particular perspective.

What's interesting is how far removed from natural origins both plain and pleasure can be in humans (and possibly in some other mammals). Awareness of our mortality can both cause emotional pain, and emotional pleasure in different contexts. This is potentially a kind of mis-firing, or appropriation by the mental models we construct.


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Azurisan21 said View Post
Is consciousness pseudoscientific, spiritualistic and aptly dismissed?
I would say that you couldn't argue against consciousness without committing a genetic fallacy. Consciousness is required to conceive of the potential of consciousness not existing!
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