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Thread: Human Mind and Quantum Physics

  1. #1 Human Mind and Quantum Physics 
    Forum Freshman Quantumologist's Avatar
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    From the BBC:

    "I cannot define the real problem, therefore I suspect there's no real problem, but I'm not sure there's no real problem." The American physicist Richard Feynman said this about the notorious puzzles and paradoxes of quantum mechanics, the theory physicists use to describe the tiniest objects in the Universe. But he might as well have been talking about the equally knotty problem of consciousness. Some scientists think we already understand what consciousness is, or that it is a mere illusion. But many others feel we have not grasped where consciousness comes from at all.

    Here is the article from which this is the opening paragraph:
    http://www.bbc.com/earth/story/20170215-the-strange-link-between-the-human-mind-and-quantum-physics

    Would anyone like to contribute comments on this?


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    Brassica oleracea Strange's Avatar
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    Despite the fact that some extremely intelligent people (e.g. Penrose) think there is some connection, I can't help feeling that this is simply "quantum theory seems mysterious and consciousness seems mysterious so they must be related". Which is very flawed logic.

    I can see no reason at all why consciousness shouldn't arise as an emergent property from the normal operations of the brain. And I don't really see how adding "quantumness" solves anything. I recommend Gödel, Escher and Bach by Hofstadter for a good overview of the more pragmatic view.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantumologist View Post
    From the BBC:

    "I cannot define the real problem, therefore I suspect there's no real problem, but I'm not sure there's no real problem." The American physicist Richard Feynman said this about the notorious puzzles and paradoxes of quantum mechanics, the theory physicists use to describe the tiniest objects in the Universe. But he might as well have been talking about the equally knotty problem of consciousness. Some scientists think we already understand what consciousness is, or that it is a mere illusion. But many others feel we have not grasped where consciousness comes from at all.

    Here is the article from which this is the opening paragraph:
    http://www.bbc.com/earth/story/20170215-the-strange-link-between-the-human-mind-and-quantum-physics

    Would anyone like to contribute comments on this?
    I see the article itself acknowledges that some of this speculation might be dismissed as Quantum Woo. I also note it contains some old chestnuts about the "observer effect" which, while they exercised the minds of people such as Wigner and Schrödinger back in the early c.20th, do not any longer trouble modern physics.

    Furthermore there is no logical link between any effect (if there were one) of a conscious observer on a QM system and QM being needed to account for the operation of the mind.

    On the mind, I am with Strange. I suspect that Cartesian dualism is deeply rooted in our Christian culture, so we have given a name for "mind" or "soul" to something that is NOT a "thing" at all, but a process: a process of the brain. In other words, thinking about it as if it were a thing is a category error. It is easy to understand why Descartes thought the mind or soul was a thing, but now with modern computers and everyone's awareness of the need for a computer to have an operating system in order to function, we have a different perspective. One can fairly easily see the mind or soul as a label for the functioning of the operating system of the brain.

    So my difficulty with this subject is that I really cannot see what the supposed problem or mystery is, in the first place.
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    When it comes to this area of interpreting the indefiniteness of measurements on a system is it fair to say that there are two main candidates?

    1:this is simply built into how things work
    2: The act of measurement itself conflates 2 systems ( the measuring system and the observed system)


    ps Would I be using good terminology to refer to an observed particle or object as a system (can a system just contain one object? )
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    Quote Originally Posted by geordief View Post
    When it comes to this area of interpreting the indefiniteness of measurements on a system is it fair to say that there are two main candidates?

    1:this is simply built into how things work
    2: The act of measurement itself conflates 2 systems ( the measuring system and the observed system)
    The uncertainty defined by Heisenberg is (or certainly seems to be) a fundamental aspect of the way the world works. The latter is the "observer effect": if you attempt to observe or measure something then you will, ever so slightly, change it. So if you use one of those flexible steel tape measures with a "hook" on the end to measure a piece of wood then the pressure of the hook will slightly stretch the ruler and sightly shrink the wood. At the quantum level, it can be even more extreme: detecting a photon destroys it.

    BTW, Heisenberg initially described the uncertainty principle in terms of the observer effect (and that is occasionally repeated today) but quickly realised that was misleading.
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    On the mind, I am with Strange. I suspect that Cartesian dualism is deeply rooted in our Christian culture, so we have given a name for "mind" or "soul" to something that is NOT a "thing" at all, but a process: a process of the brain. In other words, thinking about it as if it were a thing is a category error. It is easy to understand why Descartes thought the mind or soul was a thing, but now with modern computers and everyone's awareness of the need for a computer to have an operating system in order to function, we have a different perspective. One can fairly easily see the mind or soul as a label for the functioning of the operating system of the brain.

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    If the mind is a label for the operating system of the brain, then you still have a duality. Wouldn't QM need to account for the brain and it's function as an operating system?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ged Mannix View Post
    On the mind, I am with Strange. I suspect that Cartesian dualism is deeply rooted in our Christian culture, so we have given a name for "mind" or "soul" to something that is NOT a "thing" at all, but a process: a process of the brain. In other words, thinking about it as if it were a thing is a category error. It is easy to understand why Descartes thought the mind or soul was a thing, but now with modern computers and everyone's awareness of the need for a computer to have an operating system in order to function, we have a different perspective. One can fairly easily see the mind or soul as a label for the functioning of the operating system of the brain.

    0
    If the mind is a label for the operating system of the brain, then you still have a duality. Wouldn't QM need to account for the brain and it's function as an operating system?
    Not in the same way, you don't. The brain is a physical object. The mind, according to the way I see it, is the activity of the brain.

    And I do not see why the activity of the brain cannot be accounted for in terms of standard biochemistry and biophysics.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post

    The uncertainty defined by Heisenberg is (or certainly seems to be) a fundamental aspect of the way the world works. The latter is the "observer effect": if you attempt to observe or measure something then you will, ever so slightly, change it. So if you use one of those flexible steel tape measures with a "hook" on the end to measure a piece of wood then the pressure of the hook will slightly stretch the ruler and sightly shrink the wood. At the quantum level, it can be even more extreme: detecting a photon destroys it.

    BTW, Heisenberg initially described the uncertainty principle in terms of the observer effect (and that is occasionally repeated today) but quickly realised that was misleading.
    Have there ever been any attempts to factor out the "interference effect" ? (perhaps an analogy might be the way we clean up the picture of the stars by factoring out the interference caused by the atmosphere when using ground based telescopes)
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    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Ged Mannix View Post
    On the mind, I am with Strange. I suspect that Cartesian dualism is deeply rooted in our Christian culture, so we have given a name for "mind" or "soul" to something that is NOT a "thing" at all, but a process: a process of the brain. In other words, thinking about it as if it were a thing is a category error. It is easy to understand why Descartes thought the mind or soul was a thing, but now with modern computers and everyone's awareness of the need for a computer to have an operating system in order to function, we have a different perspective. One can fairly easily see the mind or soul as a label for the functioning of the operating system of the brain.

    0
    If the mind is a label for the operating system of the brain, then you still have a duality. Wouldn't QM need to account for the brain and it's function as an operating system?
    Not in the same way, you don't. The brain is a physical object. The mind, according to the way I see it, is the activity of the brain.

    And I do not see why the activity of the brain cannot be accounted for in terms of standard biochemistry and biophysics.
    The brain is it's activity, you can't take the activity out of the brain and observe it. Further, there is no absolute delineation between the brain and any other process, whether it is the process of the body or something else?
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    I'm not sure how relevant this is to the thread, and possibly it contains an unhealthy amount of common sense. Often dangerous!
    I remember sending in a similar post, ages ago, and receiving some support from adelady, sadly no longer with us!
    I find it almost impossible to imagine a living creature belonging to an intelligent species, such as homo sapiens, without consciousness.
    In other word consciousness is inevitable given a certain level of intelligence.
    After my post, some time ago, another member ( I can't remember the individual) gave the example of a human baby, at some early point in its development, lacking consciousness.
    Presumably that is the case, but I would respond by arguing that baby does not possess intelligence only potential intelligence along with the potential to develop consciousness as well.
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  12. #11  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Halliday View Post
    I'm not sure how relevant this is to the thread, and possibly it contains an unhealthy amount of common sense. Often dangerous!
    I remember sending in a similar post, ages ago, and receiving some support from adelady, sadly no longer with us!
    I find it almost impossible to imagine a living creature belonging to an intelligent species, such as homo sapiens, without consciousness.
    In other word consciousness is inevitable given a certain level of intelligence.
    After my post, some time ago, another member ( I can't remember the individual) gave the example of a human baby, at some early point in its development, lacking consciousness.
    Presumably that is the case, but I would respond by arguing that baby does not possess intelligence only potential intelligence along with the potential to develop consciousness as well.
    Hello Halliday. I think you are referring to something that is called "self consciousness" or " self-awareness". Consciousness does not come or go, begin at a certain age or end either during sleep or as a result of death. It is intelligent regardless of IQ or ability or the power to express complex notions or concepts. Thought isn't the pinnacle of intelligence, it is an option intelligence can use or not when the emphasis on thought is no longer an ingrained and daily habit. Have you ever been there when you experienced a lack or absence of consciousness? What was it like?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ged Mannix View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Ged Mannix View Post
    On the mind, I am with Strange. I suspect that Cartesian dualism is deeply rooted in our Christian culture, so we have given a name for "mind" or "soul" to something that is NOT a "thing" at all, but a process: a process of the brain. In other words, thinking about it as if it were a thing is a category error. It is easy to understand why Descartes thought the mind or soul was a thing, but now with modern computers and everyone's awareness of the need for a computer to have an operating system in order to function, we have a different perspective. One can fairly easily see the mind or soul as a label for the functioning of the operating system of the brain.

    0
    If the mind is a label for the operating system of the brain, then you still have a duality. Wouldn't QM need to account for the brain and it's function as an operating system?
    Not in the same way, you don't. The brain is a physical object. The mind, according to the way I see it, is the activity of the brain.

    And I do not see why the activity of the brain cannot be accounted for in terms of standard biochemistry and biophysics.
    The brain is it's activity, you can't take the activity out of the brain and observe it. Further, there is no absolute delineation between the brain and any other process, whether it is the process of the body or something else?
    Don't be absurd. You can have a brain, dead, in a jar. Where is the activity in that?
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    Consciousness does not come or go, begin at a certain age or end either during sleep or as a result of death.
    If you don't think consciousness ends on death (or under anaesthetic) then I think you need toexplain what you think the word means. Because it certainly isn't consciousness.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post

    If you don't think consciousness ends on death (or under anaesthetic) then I think you need toexplain what you think the word means. Because it certainly isn't consciousness.
    Does conscience require a thing to be conscious of so that if we "cut the connections" it disappears as a concept (right term?)

    Whereas we perhaps have this natural idea that it is a free standing entity just waiting to be fed.
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    Hello again ex. There is no observable activity in a 'dead' brain. But at that stage the brain is then a process of disintegration and decomposition, even if attempts are made to preserve it. In a jar. The process of degeneration in that jar is continuous with the activity of the same brain when it was regarded to be a 'living' brain. You see, if we label that process 'brain' then we have to account for its appearance and disappearance, it's functions and processes, its apparent death, its brilliant living quality. The conceptual mind fixates on the label and attaches qualities to that label, and by labelling it only understands the complexity of labels it has accumulated, and this complexity is enormous, just read Roger Penrose. But it is a limitation of thought-based conceptual understanding to base it's intelligence on a supposedly permanent and enduring set of statements whilst at the same time failing to directly understand/see the impermanence of that which it labels, the nature of which is unrecognised due to that fixation upon the label-giving concept.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ged Mannix View Post
    The process of degeneration in that jar is continuous with the activity of the same brain when it was regarded to be a 'living' brain.
    Nope.Entirely different set of processes.

    You see, if we label that process 'brain' then we have to account for its appearance and disappearance, it's functions and processes, its apparent death, its brilliant living quality.
    No. Brain is the physical object. Mind is the process.

    But it is a limitation of thought-based conceptual understanding to base it's intelligence on a supposedly permanent and enduring set of statements whilst at the same time failing to directly understand/see the impermanence of that which it labels, the nature of which is unrecognised due to that fixation upon the label-giving concept.
    This is woo crap.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    Consciousness does not come or go, begin at a certain age or end either during sleep or as a result of death.
    If you don't think consciousness ends on death (or under anaesthetic) then I think you need toexplain what you think the word means. Because it certainly isn't consciousness.
    Thank you Strange, consciousness is not the experience of 'me' doing or not doing something. So under anaesthetic consciousness is the same as when we are awake and writing a thesis. What is different is that under anaesthetic there may be a long period when there is no thought related to what is happening to the body in the world (the operating theatre perhaps) and so we conclude after the operation that I wasn't doing anything, just lying on the operating table. But the error is that I wasn't lying there at all. The conscious experience was, perhaps, of absolutely nothing happening at all. Of nothing registering in consciousness the body lying there. It is simply the learned habit of referring to thought to describe what happened on the operating table previously. And thought gets it wrong just as thought gets so many other things wrong in daily life. Whereas when writing the thesis, there may be many thoughts about how difficult the task is or how enjoyable. But even there, if the thought is not describing 'my' experience of writing the thesis it may instead be describing my experience of something else, being hungry or needing a coffee. Yet, there are many times when the activity engaged in is so engrossing that thoughts are not describing 'my' experience of what I am doing. This is a clue that is often missed. When a thought doesn't describe what I am doing, then what am I conscious of doing? Perhaps I am conscious of many undescribed things. Left undescribed they cannot even be called things, because consciousness knows the experience without calling it anything. This is always the case. Only thought is given to label and describe. This labelling has it's uses and we make the best use of it that we can, but it is very limited compared to a consciousness that directly knows and which makes use of thought-descriptions when it would be of benefit to do so. Human consciousness when free to choose to use concepts and thought-descriptions when it wishes to is immense. But currently we learn from an early age to rely on thoughts and we lose touch with this natural human intelligence. But we can get back in touch with it and break the previously learned habit. In the meantime thoughts will be useful or useless but unfortunately we, through habit, will heavily rely on the useless thoughts, thus we describe ourselves in very negative ways at times and often so very much of the time. Though some are lucky to have more positive thoughts than others. Regardless, all have natural human consciousness which is always switched on.
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    Quote Originally Posted by geordief View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post

    If you don't think consciousness ends on death (or under anaesthetic) then I think you need toexplain what you think the word means. Because it certainly isn't consciousness.
    Does conscience require a thing to be conscious of so that if we "cut the connections" it disappears as a concept (right term?)

    Whereas we perhaps have this natural idea that it is a free standing entity just waiting to be fed.
    Hi geordief. Do you mean conscience or consciousness?
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  20. #19  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Ged Mannix View Post
    The process of degeneration in that jar is continuous with the activity of the same brain when it was regarded to be a 'living' brain.
    Nope.Entirely different set of processes.

    You see, if we label that process 'brain' then we have to account for its appearance and disappearance, it's functions and processes, its apparent death, its brilliant living quality.
    No. Brain is the physical object. Mind is the process.

    But it is a limitation of thought-based conceptual understanding to base it's intelligence on a supposedly permanent and enduring set of statements whilst at the same time failing to directly understand/see the impermanence of that which it labels, the nature of which is unrecognised due to that fixation upon the label-giving concept.
    This is woo crap.

    Welcome back Dyw. It seems you have a dualistic definition of object and process. That's very common.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ged Mannix View Post

    Hi geordief. Do you mean conscience or consciousness?
    Yes ,consciousness. A bad mistake.(well maybe "conscience" has both senses, not quite sure)

    EDIT: No "conscience" just seems to have moral connotations.

    I was mixing up "la conscience" in French ,which is used there to mean "consciousness".(What they call a false friend and which can sometimes catch you out if you are familiar with two languages.)
    Last edited by geordief; October 13th, 2017 at 06:32 AM.
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  22. #21  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ged Mannix View Post
    Thank you Strange, consciousness is not the experience of 'me' doing or not doing something.
    Then - once again - you're using a definition other than the accepted one. Either provide your definition or stay out of the discussion.

    So under anaesthetic consciousness is the same as when we are awake and writing a thesis.
    No it's not. Unless you can cite a reliable source that corroborates your claim.

    Regardless, all have natural human consciousness which is always switched on.
    See first comment.
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    ​.
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    Quote Originally Posted by geordief View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Ged Mannix View Post

    Hi geordief. Do you mean conscience or consciousness?
    Yes ,consciousness. A bad mistake.(well maybe "conscience" has both senses, not quite sure)
    Thank you geordief, I like your reply at #14 very much. I think (if you'll excuse the use of that word) that you have a deep sense of exactly what human consciousness is. That is invaluable and a huge step towards ditching ancient and jaded beliefs and habits of hanging on to other's definitions of what they think it is, which they attempt to corroborate and elevate above the instinctive understanding of those who are content to express their own experience of human intelligence/consciousness in their own words, mispelled or simplistic or not, which is fine, because having an instinctive understanding means we recognise our resourceful intelligence and are not limiting ourselves to the constraints others put upon themselves by our adopting their definitions or even their language. Definitions have their use sometimes but so easily the definition is mistaken for the thing itself. And it is always bound up with a personal investment in the superiority of that definition and usually our own need to feel superior. But that is a fruitless investment compared to an instinctive understanding or grasp of what our own human consciousness is in our own experience.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ged Mannix View Post
    ​.
    Your most intelligent post so far.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ged Mannix View Post
    I think (if you'll excuse the use of that word) that you have a deep sense of exactly what human consciousness is.
    Now tell the rest of us what "human consciousness" is - with supporting sources.

    and elevate above the instinctive understanding of those who are content to express their own experience of human intelligence/consciousness in their own words, mispelled or simplistic or not, which is fine, because having an instinctive understanding means we recognise our resourceful intelligence and are not limiting ourselves to the constraints others put upon themselves by our adopting their definitions or even their language.
    Please provide evidence that this "instinctive understanding" has any validity whatsoever and that it's something more than woo-based wishful thinking.

    Definitions have their use sometimes but so easily the definition is mistaken for the thing itself. And it is always bound up with a personal investment in the superiority of that definition and usually our own need to feel superior.
    One more (and final time) definitions are required so that we all know that we're talking about the same thing.

    But that is a fruitless investment compared to an instinctive understanding or grasp of what our own human consciousness is in our own experience.
    More bollo*cks.
    Last edited by Dywyddyr; October 12th, 2017 at 12:08 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Halliday View Post
    I'm not sure how relevant
    I remember sending in a similar post, ages ago, and receiving some support from adelady, sadly no longer with us
    ? Did you hear something about Adelady?

    I thought she might have just lost interest in the forum
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    Quote Originally Posted by geordief View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Halliday View Post
    I'm not sure how relevant
    I remember sending in a similar post, ages ago, and receiving some support from adelady, sadly no longer with us
    ? Did you hear something about Adelady?

    I thought she might have just lost interest in the forum
    Don't know, but I have an idea she was nursing an illness. She may be not with us irreversibly.
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    Quote Originally Posted by geordief View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Halliday View Post
    I'm not sure how relevant
    I remember sending in a similar post, ages ago, and receiving some support from adelady, sadly no longer with us
    ? Did you hear something about Adelady?

    I thought she might have just lost interest in the forum
    I asked about her here, ages ago, but it was clear nothing was known.
    I suppose "she might have just lost interest in the forum" but, even if that were the case, I feel she would have sent a post giving a reason(s) for her departure.
    Of course she was not under any pressure to provide any information on the matter.
    I just hope everything is in order!
    She had good knowledge of topics I knew little about, so I was "chuffed" I recognised her as a excellent poster early on.
    Last edited by Halliday; October 12th, 2017 at 05:23 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ged Mannix View Post
    Definitions have their use sometimes but so easily the definition is mistaken for the thing itself. And it is always bound up with a personal investment in the superiority of that definition and usually our own need to feel superior. But that is a fruitless investment compared to an instinctive understanding or grasp of what our own human consciousness is in our own experience.
    Well definitions can be restricting but if one is asked to clarify one's position and precise meaning it is polite to do so and in fact it is more or less a requirement on this forum
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    Despite the fact that some extremely intelligent people (e.g. Penrose) think there is some connection, I can't help feeling that this is simply "quantum theory seems mysterious and consciousness seems mysterious so they must be related". Which is very flawed logic.

    I can see no reason at all why consciousness shouldn't arise as an emergent property from the normal operations of the brain. And I don't really see how adding "quantumness" solves anything. I recommend Gödel, Escher and Bach by Hofstadter for a good overview of the more pragmatic view.
    Hi Strange. This is interesting. Yes Penrose is very capable....consciousness cannot be an emergent property of a process of anything. Simple reason is, consciousness doesn't come or go, it is always fully present and complete, the brain is a temporary 'process' ....I think that latter part of the statement is obvious but so long as we mis-identify consciousness as "being conscious of something" then we are wide of the mark.
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    Genius Duck Moderator Dywyddyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ged Mannix View Post
    consciousness cannot be an emergent property of a process of anything. Simple reason is, consciousness doesn't come or go, it is always fully present and complete
    Apart from the fact that your claim "consciousness ... is always fully present and complete" is untrue it's the case that even if it were true that doesn't stop consciousness being an emergent property.
    BTW I'm still waiting for the support for that claim (as asked for in my post #21).

    , the brain is a temporary 'process'
    One more time: no. The brain is a physical object, not a process.

    ....I think that latter part of the statement is obvious but so long as we mis-identify consciousness as "being conscious of something" then we are wide of the mark.
    And yet you don't bother either
    A) stating what your position actually is (i.e. why you make the claim you did), or
    B) supporting the claim with evidence or argument.
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    Hello again Dywyddyr, thank you for allowing me to join you again. I changed my profile photo to make an attempt to show I'm here to hide behind a veil and be a nuisance. I hope you are well. Yes, #21. Ok. I wrote something earlier today so I will use that and see how we go. By the way, this is an amazingly well put together site, brilliant navigation and such well-spring of talent and knowledge and enthusiasm here to use intelligence to it's optimal degree. Grateful to be here. Ok. Here it is: on second thoughts, I think I'll start a new thread if that's okay?


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    Quote Originally Posted by Ged Mannix View Post
    on second thoughts, I think I'll start a new thread if that's okay?
    Here's a clue: you made claims/ comments IN THIS THREAD about the TOPIC OF THIS THREAD and which were subsequently questioned IN THIS THREAD.
    Starting a new thread is simply going to split the efforts of respondents and potentially confuse the issue.
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    Good point Dywyddyr, you have a great sense of the place of things and well organized approach.....oh, typo, I meant "...to show I'm not here to hide behind a veil and be a nuisance..." sorry
    Last edited by Ged Mannix; October 13th, 2017 at 01:54 PM. Reason: typo at #32
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    Natural Human Intelligence

    Human consciousness can be defined as your experience of your own human consciousness right now. This shifts the emphasis usually placed upon a source of that consciousness needing to be hypothesised, investigated and then defined in the light of any findings. We can investigate and define our own human consciousness right now, in our current experience.



    Any definition we give it is there to be shared or made use of but that definition can be discarded or improved without needing to be defended or justified or even argued over. It can be discussed and looked into. But to lose ourselves in semantics is to miss the point. And the point is radical. We do not need to test or open up the brain or any other part of the human body to investigate our experience of consciousness. We can do those things but they will not change the experience. That is because human consciousness does not change.
    Last edited by Ged Mannix; October 13th, 2017 at 02:14 PM. Reason: cut and paste left text unclear
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  37. #36  
    Genius Duck Moderator Dywyddyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ged Mannix View Post
    Humanconsciousness can be defined as your experience of your own humanconsciousness right now.
    So consciousness is the experience of consciousness?
    Isn't that somewhat recursive: Consciousness is the experience of (the experience of (the experience of....)).
    Somewhat meaningless. And unsupported.

    This shifts the emphasis usually placed upona source of that consciousness needing to be hypothesised,investigated and then defined in the light of any findings.
    Nope.
    All it does is turn it into nonsense.

    We caninvestigate and define our own human consciousness right now, in ourcurrent experience.
    1) That "definition" you gave certainly isn't going to lead to any useful/ meaningful answers (it's hardly amenable to investigation as it stands).
    2) It doesn't help "locate" that consciousness.

    Anydefinition we give it is there to be shared or made use of but thatdefinition can be discarded or improved without needing to bedefended or justified or even argued over.
    I'm getting a bit sick of repeating this: a definition does need to be "defended/ justified" since an undefended/ unjustified one could be complete drivel (see, for example, the one you gave) and leaves us talking either at odds with each or talking about something so f*cking nebulous that the questions (let alone answers) are meaningless and of no utility whatsoever.

    But to lose ourselves in semantics is to miss the point.
    Semantics: the branch of linguistics and logic concerned with meaning.
    Ignoring semantics means not communicating. I don't know if you read my previous post in the thread where you received your 1 day ban (link), but I sincerely recommend that you not only read it but also take its message to heart.

    That is because human consciousness does not change.
    The observed facts suggest otherwise.
    STILL waiting for the supporting argument/ evidence for your claims...
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    Great reply Dywyrddyr, it's probably better to take another look. If you personally believe that human consciousness had aspects or qualities that can be studied then you will continue to search for them. That might be fun for a while, maybe even a long while.

    I would ask, why do you believe this? What are the aspects or qualities of your own human intelligence that you want to look into or find elsewhere? Are they consciousness or objects in the world/Universe/out there somewhere? Can you give me your example of a definition you use for consciousness/human intelligence to give me an idea of that which you subscribe to as rational and worth defending?
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  39. #38  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ged Mannix View Post
    I would ask, why do you believe this?
    You don't get it do you?
    YOU made the claim.
    It's up to YOU to support that claim.

    Can you give me your example of a definition you use for consciousness/human intelligence to give me an idea of that which you subscribe to as rational and worth defending?
    Again: your claim therefore YOU need to support it.
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    My explanations are supported by direct experience, right now, all we have to do is look into that experience. That is where the evidence is. If you want evidence of the ability to see, it is right there in your direct experience. Will this suffice?
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  41. #40  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ged Mannix View Post
    My explanations are supported by direct experience, right now, all we have to do is look into that experience. That is where the evidence is. If you want evidence of the ability to see, it is right there in your direct experience. Will this suffice?
    Nope.
    Experience (especially personal experience) is little more than anecdote - it's uncorroborated, let alone verified as valid, and therefore does not count as evidence.
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    I've come back to a computer to find this thread and feel the need to quantify some things.
    This is an extract from an article linked here: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog...-consciousness

    In 1994 David Chalmers published a paper explaining why consciousness is such a challenging phenomenon to understand. Although he wasn’t the first to discuss these challenges, he was the first to categorize them into two types of problems: “easy” problems and the “hard” problem. Easy problems involve the explanation of how the mind integrates information, focuses attention and allows us to report on mental states. Though not a piece of cake, such problems are easy because solving them only requires that we determine the mechanisms that explain these behaviors. Easy problems are physical by nature, falling within the empirical domains of psychology, cognitive science and neuroscience. Given the current trend in science of the mind, we’re confident that one day we will solve these problems.

    The issues raised by questions of consciousness are, in my opinion, connected to the findings of physics because we are constructed using the building blocks of matter (quarks and electrons) yet we are also attempting to determine the workings of the Universe, Nature, and concepts aligned accordingly. In this endeavour, how much self-searching are we allowing ourselves (speaking in the context of scientific applications)? It appears that the focus is very much 'out there' at the moment, and not much attention is (apparently) being paid to the process mechanism of life forms in studying the quantum field. By 'out there' I mean externally in relation to ourselves. I'm curious as to the beliefs of others in this regard, particularly scientists. Are we paying enough attention to the human construct of mental, intuitive, or conscious processing in seeking to define what happens 'out there'?
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    It's a standard joke that the soft sciences are harder than the hard sciences.
    Simply because with the hard sciences it's far easier to perform experiments1 and isolate and eliminate variables.
    When it comes to things like "consciousness" we find that even the concept is somewhat hard to pin down, let alone come up with experiments to give us "definitive" answers.
    At present (despite what's implied in that quote) the soft sciences aren't sciences, but they are doing their best to get to that stage.

    1 There are all sorts of ethical problems for a start.
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    Absolutely. This is exactly why collaboration is so important, and the consequences so far-reaching. There have been numerous military advances from the discoveries of physics, but few social ones, and that's not just disappointing, it's a bit of a tragedy. To redress the balance, it's as important for the hard and soft areas to find some common ground as it is for the echelons of physics to open themselves up to the public, which as recent endeavours by Fermilab and the IoP illustrate, is a move which is actually happening. That this movement is occurring at all can in part be attributed to the appreciation of scientists that their work is applicable potentially to everyone, and in part to the sudden swell of interest that society has (randomly?) generated over the past couple of decades. The collision of these factors has resulted in the discussions we are now having and we can all be hopeful, with potential benefit, that they continue to illicit interest from 'both sides of the fence', as it were.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantumologist View Post
    There have been numerous military advances from the discoveries of physics, but few social ones
    No social ones?
    The PC you're sat at, the phone you use, the microwave that cooks your food. Etc etc. Military applications of physics may well have more of a gosh-wow factor in the news but the advances in that field aren't any more widespread or any less "spectacular" than the ones applied to every day life (and probably less numerous - after all "the military" is a subset of "every day life" and potential applications are therefore purely less by dint of it being a sub set). (And that's ignoring the military advances that find their way into every day life anyway - e.g. GPS, satnavs, improved safety standards...).

    To redress the balance, it's as important for the hard and soft areas to find some common ground
    Nope.
    IF there is "common ground" then it will be found (that's how science works). But you can't dictate that physics and psychology "go away and don't come back until they've found common ground."
    Both (all) disciplines are what they are - there may in fact NOT be any common ground whatsoever. Of it emerges that the really is then all well and good, but to make edicts like "redress the balance, find a common ground" is a diversion of effort for both sides. People would spend their time far more profitably (money sense included by not solely intended in that sense) by just getting on with the work.

    illicit
    Elicit!
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    Few social ones, by which I meant directly from application of the science. Military efforts (and yes, commercial too) have taken aspects of discoveries and turned them into real-time benefits through development of weapons (and marketable technologies). People in general, which was the point I was making, haven't been able to take similar benefits from discovery and apply those benefits to their own lives directly (not by buying something, but by advantageously adopting something productive into their personal approach). This is why I cited mental health as a possible sector which could benefit enormously from findings in this way.

    I was not suggesting that people "go away and don't come back until they've found common ground", I was suggesting only that such ground is important, particularly in terms of the kind of progress to which I am referring. I appreciate that the commonality will reveal itself as and when, if at all, and take nothing from the work and effort scientists of all descriptions make in their contributions to their fields. That is the second time you have accused me of undermining the value of scientific diligence and I'd very much appreciate it if you would take note of this correction.

    Grammatical correction noted. I have added (via edit), the assumption that "included by not solely intended" was intended to include the word "but". With one T, that is.
    Last edited by Quantumologist; October 15th, 2017 at 01:58 AM. Reason: Spelling correction added...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantumologist View Post
    Few social ones, by which I meant directly from application of the science. Military efforts (and yes, commercial too) have taken aspects of discoveries and turned them into real-time benefits through development of weapons (and marketable technologies). People in general, which was the point I was making, haven't been able to take similar benefits from discovery and apply those benefits to their own lives directly (not by buying something, but by advantageously adopting something productive into their personal approach). This is why I cited mental health as a possible sector which could benefit enormously from findings in this way.
    I'm not entirely sure what you mean here. Could you expand? Are you separating commercial (civilian-applicable) advances from "social" ones? Could you give an example of a "social advance" that science has given/ could give?

    That is the second time you have accused me of undermining the value of scientific diligence and I'd very much appreciate it if you would take note of this correction.
    Um... so noted. But I don't see where the accusation was made.

    Grammatical correction noted. I have added (via edit), the assumption that "included by not solely intended" was intended to include the word "but". With one T, that is.
    Should have been "included but not solely intended" serves me right for A) buying a nifty keyboard with lots of USB ports and B) not learning how to touch type1. The one I'm currently using has - after about 9 months, managed to lose about half the letters from the key faces.

    1 Not entirely sure that would have helped anyway: there's a good number of extra keys on this one. I may have to spend money soon...
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  48. #47  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantumologist View Post
    Few social ones, by which I meant directly from application of the science. Military efforts (and yes, commercial too) have taken aspects of discoveries and turned them into real-time benefits through development of weapons (and marketable technologies).
    I could list dozens, maybe hundreds, of non-military applications of science but few military ones (and even they are not purely military: I'm thinking of nuclear weapons and explosives in general.

    On the other side we have all the myriad electrical and electronic devices from motors and generators to mobile phones and computer software and GPS navigation systems. There are medical advances such as the use of radioisotopes for diagnosis and treatment, MRI scanners, the development of new drugs using chemical engineering. Nanotechnology. Transport. Agricultural advances. and on and on ...
    Without wishing to overstate my case, everything in the observable universe definitely has its origins in Northamptonshire -- Alan Moore
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  49. #48  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantumologist View Post
    Few social ones, by which I meant directly from application of the science. Military efforts (and yes, commercial too) have taken aspects of discoveries and turned them into real-time benefits through development of weapons (and marketable technologies). People in general, which was the point I was making, haven't been able to take similar benefits from discovery and apply those benefits to their own lives directly (not by buying something, but by advantageously adopting something productive into their personal approach). This is why I cited mental health as a possible sector which could benefit enormously from findings in this way.

    I was not suggesting that people "go away and don't come back until they've found common ground", I was suggesting only that such ground is important, particularly in terms of the kind of progress to which I am referring. I appreciate that the commonality will reveal itself as and when, if at all, and take nothing from the work and effort scientists of all descriptions make in their contributions to their fields. That is the second time you have accused me of undermining the value of scientific diligence and I'd very much appreciate it if you would take note of this correction.

    Grammatical correction noted. I have added (via edit), the assumption that "included by not solely intended" was intended to include the word "but". With one T, that is.
    You seem to be talking, not of the tangible social benefits of science to society (e.g. the steam engine, electric light, the germ theory of disease) but of the benefits to the way of thinking of individual members of society. Is that right? But if so, why do you then single out military applications of science? These have little to do with a way of thinking: they are tangible applications, just like the steam engine, electric light and the germ theory of disease. Does this betray a prejudice against science? A sex-based prejudice, even? Because that is what I am starting to smell.

    Your point does not seem clear. If you are arguing for cross-disciplinary research, between hard science and the soft sciences, you are probably pushing at a door that is not closed. We all know the tendency towards silo thinking is ever-present and to be guarded against. However if you think there are systematically underexploited opportunities here, you need to give examples in order to make your case.

    Can you clarify?
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    Ban this nutter please...
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  52. #51  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ged Mannix View Post
    .
    If you have something to say then say it.
    If you don't then don't post.
    It's not hard.
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  53. #52  
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    I appreciate you're giving him enough rope to hang himself, but every post he has made is devoid of reason or any real thought. The guy's an idiot... Quantumologist isn't much better, if a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, in her case it's fucking lethal...
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  54. #53  
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhDemon View Post
    I appreciate you're giving him enough rope to hang himself, but every post he has made is devoid of reason or any real thought. The guy's an idiot... Quantumologist isn't much better, if a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, in her case it's fucking lethal...
    Don't be too hard on Quantumologist. She is at least interested in science, even if she doesn't really understand what it is. But she's heavily into woo. A few minutes research on her website and Google indicates she has recently set up some sort of business consultancy on it (Xia Empowerment, registered in July), so I think we would be doing her potential customers a favour by straightening out a few things. Actually, it would help her too, because if she goes on the present rate I suspect the business may struggle.
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    At least I came here with an open portfolio and nothing to hide. My websites are what they are, my credentials are as stated. In taking my contributions apart using what has been gleaned from researching my public presence, you only highlight the secrecy of your own identity.

    My interest in science goes back a long way and covers a lot of ground. I'd rather be cross-referencing (in equal measure) discussions with others on this forum who are 'into woo' but many of them may feel uncomfortable about coming forward to post, which is of course the intention. Woo and scientific principles are not mutually exclusive no matter how much the positivist would wish otherwise. Thanks for the comment on my knowledge, its lethality is noted.

    The question pertaining to this thread is where the human mind correlates with principles of quantum physics. There has been a lot posted out on this topic:

    https://phys.org/news/2014-01-discov...roborates.html

    https://www.theatlantic.com/science/...-brain/506768/

    http://journalofcosmology.com/Consciousness160

    Just a few (authoritative) articles to get us going.
    Do you think it might be fair to invite others to post here who might have some ideas of their own on this wide-ranging application of contexts? I know it's going to be difficult to shake terriers from my ankles, but apparently I may have been handed a shotgun I didn't know about......
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  56. #55  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantumologist View Post
    At least I came here with an open portfolio and nothing to hide. My websites are what they are, my credentials are as stated. In taking my contributions apart using what has been gleaned from researching my public presence, you only highlight the secrecy of your own identity.

    My interest in science goes back a long way and covers a lot of ground. I'd rather be cross-referencing (in equal measure) discussions with others on this forum who are 'into woo' but many of them may feel uncomfortable about coming forward to post, which is of course the intention. Woo and scientific principles are not mutually exclusive no matter how much the positivist would wish otherwise. Thanks for the comment on my knowledge, its lethality is noted.

    The question pertaining to this thread is where the human mind correlates with principles of quantum physics. There has been a lot posted out on this topic:

    https://phys.org/news/2014-01-discov...roborates.html

    https://www.theatlantic.com/science/...-brain/506768/

    http://journalofcosmology.com/Consciousness160

    Just a few (authoritative) articles to get us going.
    Do you think it might be fair to invite others to post here who might have some ideas of their own on this wide-ranging application of contexts? I know it's going to be difficult to shake terriers from my ankles, but apparently I may have been handed a shotgun I didn't know about......
    Trouble is that woo is objectively false. For example , what evidence is there for this EM field or energy you assert is associated with life? You have been dodging answering that for days now. To propagate claims like that with no evidence is basically hoodwinking people. So don't pretend some kind of false equivalence between things that are made up and science.
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    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post

    Trouble is that woo is objectively false. For example , what evidence is there for this EM field or energy you assert is associated with life? You have been dodging answering that for days now. To propagate claims like that with no evidence is basically hoodwinking people. So don't pretend some kind of false equivalence between things that are made up and science.
    I have noticed that question hasn't been addressed although you have asked for it twice (x3?) now in different threads ,I think.
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  58. #57  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantumologist View Post
    My interest in science goes back a long way and covers a lot of ground.
    Unfortunately you've also managed to incorporate an inordinate amount of woo along with the science.

    Woo and scientific principles are not mutually exclusive
    Actually they are.
    Woo - by definition - is, at best unscientific. At its worst it's anti-science.

    The main argument against the quantum mind hypothesis is the assertion that quantum states in the brain would lose coherency before they reached a scale where they could be useful for neural processing.
    And
    [O]ne might as well invoke “pixie dust in the synapses” to explain human cognition. (Oh look, your own link).

    404 not found.

    Just a few (authoritative) articles to get us going.
    So much for "authoritative"...

    Do you think it might be fair to invite others to post here who might have some ideas of their own on this wide-ranging application of contexts?
    Invite whomever you like - they'll be as subject to having woo and drivel pointed out as such as you are.
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    Journal of Cosmology This is the link posted above - incomplete HTML, sorry.

    Well, we'll just have to see where Alice's adventures take her next, and hope that the scientific concepts are as extraordinary in discussion as the juxtapositions of theories and hypotheses suggest they ought to be. Most would agree that the most expansive investigations arise from the collaboration of open minds. Though this is, of course, a personal opinion and not proven by statistically supported evidence.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantumologist View Post
    isn't a real science journal at all.

    Most would agree that the most expansive investigations arise from the collaboration of open minds.
    So long as those minds aren't so open that the brains don't fall out.
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  61. #60  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Quantumologist View Post
    isn't a real science journal at all.

    Most would agree that the most expansive investigations arise from the collaboration of open minds.
    So long as those minds aren't so open that the brains don't fall out.
    Indeed it seems to be a crank journal with an agenda. The funny thing is that you almost know immediately, just from the bad typeface and layout of the website! But the Wiki article confirms it.
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