Will science ever explain consciousness?

Discussion in 'General Philosophy' started by makeshift, Apr 27, 2006.

  1. Cyperium I'm always me Valued Senior Member

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    Psychology just talks about the mechanisms within consciousness, not consciousness itself. It talks about the various mechanisms that a individual can use to prevent danger, and how some of these mechanisms actually are harmful to us when the danger is gone.

    I think it would help if we had as much 'will' in everyday life, as we would have in danger. If so we could set away the mechanism that avoided the danger when it had avoided it. Instead the mechanism often (or rarely, I don't know) clings on to our everyday life, creating phobia, multiple personality disorder (mpd) (or disassociative identity disorder (did)) etc.
     
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  3. Tnerb Banned Banned

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    ah i see, the question is will science ever explain it. that is "Science" ya know, like, science, the big el wordo, science.

    i said psychology alreayd's got it coz ...I think it's already got it.
     
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  5. lightgigantic Banned Banned

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    Here is an excerpt from an interview at http://www.gosai.com/science/consciousness-in-science.html


    "Did you know that before Rutherford split the atom in 1911 scientists considered the question of what an atom is a religious question?! For them it was enough that the hypothesis of the atom was useful to explain certain physical processes. Kekule, who discovered the structure of benzene said, "The question of whether or not atoms exist has little signifigance from a chemical point of view; its discussion belongs rather to metaphysics." But today the study of what's inside the atom is physics!

    Similarly, scientists in this century have regarded the issue of what consciousness is as a religious or metaphysical question. After all, Western science started out as a protest against religion. Since religion went inward, science saw its own task as going outward. But as science went further and further into the external world, they ended up inside the atom where to their surprise they saw consciousness once again staring them in the face!"

    I think that if science is going to elaborate on the nature of consciousness they will have to synthesize with some ideas prevalent in religion
     
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  7. Crunchy Cat F-in' *meow* baby!!! Valued Senior Member

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    Never heard of that before. I've seen science taking consciousness very seriously.

    Huh?

    I would be amazed if science ever turned to theology. I would be even more amazed if anything useful resulted.
     
  8. Oniw17 ascetic, sage, diogenes, bum? Valued Senior Member

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    If science is the pursuit of knowledge, then consciousness will...CAN be described through science(I just don't know how to do so). All of the answers exist, and they have nothing to do with theology, only simple logic, as we've proved so many times in history.
     
  9. lightgigantic Banned Banned

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    Science already has

    "Did you know that before Rutherford split the atom in 1911 scientists considered the question of what an atom is a religious question?! For them it was enough that the hypothesis of the atom was useful to explain certain physical processes. Kekule, who discovered the structure of benzene said, "The question of whether or not atoms exist has little signifigance from a chemical point of view; its discussion belongs rather to metaphysics." But today the study of what's inside the atom is physics!
     
  10. lightgigantic Banned Banned

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    And religion is not the pursuit of knowledge? It also doesn't innvolve logic? If that is your concept of religion I can understand why you may write off religion but I offer that it isn't a correct definition of religion
     
  11. Oniw17 ascetic, sage, diogenes, bum? Valued Senior Member

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    then pm me with enlightenment to your respective religion, and perhaps you may change my mind
     
  12. Crunchy Cat F-in' *meow* baby!!! Valued Senior Member

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    So where did science turn to theology exactly?
     
  13. lightgigantic Banned Banned

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    Physica abandoned the standpoint that the atom was a metaphysical notion and now physics is all about the contents of the atom - the point is that it illustrates that science has an inherent resistence to the pursuit of knowledge in areas of religion because of a notion that for science to be science it must be diametrically opposed to religion - such a notion is of course illusory - and as evidenced not conducive to the pursuit of knowledge
     
  14. Crunchy Cat F-in' *meow* baby!!! Valued Senior Member

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    Hold on there, some older physacists considered atoms a metaphysical thing, changed their mind, and this is supposed to be an example of science turning to reasoned discourse concerning religion, spirituality and God?
     
  15. lightgigantic Banned Banned

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    No - the history of science indicates that physicists refrained from entering into posing questions about the nature of atoms because it was considered taboo - something clearly unscientific since it pertained to religion - it was only when some physicists broke the norms of the established institition and came up with astounding results that we now have the ground work for what we establish as physics

    - the point is that the "dogma" of science is that it labours as the diametric opposite of religion and thus prevents itself from actually pursuing knowledge, which is what it primarily prides itself on

    It is the authors opinion that answers for the pursuit of consciousness are facing a similar blockade
     
  16. Diogenes' Dog Subvert the dominant cliche... Registered Senior Member

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    I agree in part, though I think scientists ARE probing consciousness, or at least speculating on the possible causal links between consciousness and neurophysiology for instance. The problem I think is our lack of knowledge about either.

    There's a number of speculative models, e.g. "orch-or", "quantum spin-mediated", "synaptic quantum uncertainty" etc. etc. largely involving quantum mechanical states, M-theory etc. supposedly going on inside microtubules. Seeing as we don't really comprehend these either, this allows scientists to do what's been termed "minimization of mysteries" i.e. try to explain one mystery in terms of several others!

    I believe consciousness is probably not going to be reducible to more basic physical phenomenon anway. If it is a physical phenomenon, and not (as I believe) a fundamental state, it must be a product of complexity, "the whole is greater than the sum of it's parts". We will therefore never solve the "hard problem of consciousness" by reductionism. I realise this lumps me in with those who are slightly disdainfully called "The New Mysterians". However, I cannot see any proposed models being subject to experimental testing. How would we measure if a system DOES produce consciousness anyway? Turings mirror test?

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  17. fadingCaptain are you a robot? Valued Senior Member

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    I feel watching my children grow in their first couple of years has given me some great perspectives on human consciousness.

    I have a 3 month old child now that is just starting to really respond to me. Initially, an infant is basically blessed with a series of reflexes and instincts. Crying, feeding, etc.

    I also have 2 and 4 year olds that I have seen slowly but surely develop personalities and self-awareness. It is obvious that consciousness is a result of development of the brain. There are many stages children go through and each is a jump to higher levels of consciousness.

    So, in short, consciousness appears to be the result of the physical complexity of the brain. How will we test this theory? By reaching the technological capabilities to duplicate the intricacies of a brain. Not an easy feat however.
     
  18. Crunchy Cat F-in' *meow* baby!!! Valued Senior Member

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    All I am hearing is an argument about science considering some topic 'religious' and then slowly pursuing the topic anyway. Wasn't it science who first theorized the Atom and not some religion?
     
  19. Diogenes' Dog Subvert the dominant cliche... Registered Senior Member

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    In fact it was Democritus who was a philosopher...
     
  20. Crunchy Cat F-in' *meow* baby!!! Valued Senior Member

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    Nice. So it wasn't science or religion.
     
  21. lightgigantic Banned Banned

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    Well those endeavoring in that field disagree

    "Eccles is very much known for his open stand that mind is different from the brain. Eccles was described by Libet as one of the five top neuroscientists of the century. When he says that brain is different from the mind, in the very least you cannot tell him that he does not know about the brain."
    from
    http://www.gosai.com/science/consciousness-in-science.html
     
  22. lightgigantic Banned Banned

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    Actually the atom is refered to in the Vedas - it is used as a reference to explaining time - It states that time is perceived by measuring the time it takes for light to pass over an atom - and the latest development in science for accurately recording time is measuring the passage of light on atoms.

    Looks like it does belong to religion
     
  23. Crunchy Cat F-in' *meow* baby!!! Valued Senior Member

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    Does this imply the Atom originated in the Vedas (religion) or it originated from Democritus (a person)?
     

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