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Re: [existlist] Re: What power to charm or harm?

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  • eduardathome
    Mary, I now also check the junk mail . There are a lot of automatic reflexes. For example, touching a hot pan would produce an automatic reaction to pull
    Message 1 of 43 , Jan 6, 2013
      Mary,

      I now also check the "junk mail".

      There are a lot of automatic reflexes. For example, touching a hot pan
      would produce an automatic reaction to pull your hand away. Which is a
      practical sort of thing, since it might take two long for the brain to
      analyse and give the correct instruction. The reaction time of the brain is
      something like 200 milliseconds [0.2 seconds] and that is perhaps too long
      since you have to first react and then instruct and then react to the
      instruction. The time adds up. For example, if an aircraft is headed to an
      obstacle, you have figure in the time for the pilot to see the obstacle, to
      identify it as an obstacle and to start the turning manoeuvre. That
      involves several important seconds.

      But I think that one has to look at this subject from the point of view of
      "thinking". The question is ... "what is it that thinks?" It is the
      thinking person that we are concerned about, not the automatic reacting
      person. That you automatically pull your hand away from a hot pan, or
      automatically turn your eyes for a too bright source such as the sun, is not
      of importance to philosophy or to your ability to deal successfully with
      your living years.

      We are plugging into a mainframe which contains all sorts of complex sensors
      and yes the mainframe may have algorithms that produce automatic reactions.
      But ultimately it has to be recognized that it is the brain that "thinks".
      A kidney doesn't think and neither does a hand which drops a hot pan. They
      certainly affect our thinking, but they do not of themselves do any
      thinking.

      I don't deny that determining biochemical algorithms is a recent and complex
      science. However, you can see what's happening here. I am trying to make
      the point that it is the brain that thinks. But then there are the replies
      that ... Oh, but there are biochemical algorithms ... or ... Oh, but the
      kidney is very complex. None of this, however, has anything to with
      "thinking".

      eduardathome


      -----Original Message-----
      From: Mary
      Sent: Sunday, January 06, 2013 3:33 PM
      To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: [existlist] Re: What power to charm or harm?

      eduard,

      Yahoo sends a portion of our group e-mails into the spam folder; it's a
      flawed system.

      Sorry, if I'm repeating myself, but biochemical algorithms are not mental
      (conscious) scripts; they're operating on the autonomic level much like a
      recipe which doesn't allow much variation. Determining these algorithms is a
      recent and complex science. Yet even these algorithms are constantly
      interacting with internal and external environments, hence
      interconnectedness, and difficulty of cataloguing them. The brain performs
      many different activities including symbolism, imagination, creativity,
      reason, emotion, automatic and intentional physical commands, etc. Using
      your metaphor of a brain and its mainframe, how do you describe the
      'mainframe' into which we are 'plugged'?

      Mary

      --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, eduardathome wrote:
      >
      > Mary,
      >
      > Sorry, this one went to my junk mail and I only found it today.
      >
      > Algorithms are mental scripts. They play out in a fashion to give a
      > result.
      > It may well be that some are genetic. Albeit, some may be learned early
      > within a family that say is likely to have depression so that the children
      > are often depressed. Is suicide in the Hemingway family genetic or is it
      > simply that a father shows the way?? It is also known that Hemingway, as
      > his father, had Hemochromatosis which is an iron malfunction and can lead
      > to
      > mental and physical problems. So do we have a script of "I shall commit
      > suicide" or is there a genetic ailment that will eventually cause a script
      > with this conclusion?? I am inclined to the latter, as I do not see how
      > our
      > DNA can be coded for a particular script or algorithm. Scripts like memes
      > are not carried through cell fertilization.
      >
      > Our thinking may also be modified or limited by ailments of the brain ...
      > either genetic or acquired. It is said that Einstein had more glial cells
      > than the average. Although glial cells were thought to be only for
      > physical
      > support and isolation of neurons, there is some evidence today that they
      > can
      > aid or modulate neurotransmission.
      >
      > Mental scripts are formed in many ways. They are the basis of our
      > thinking.
      > They can be socially formed, or just the result of personal experience or
      > lack of experience.
      >
      > In a sense, one could well say that we are robots interconnected by a
      > mainframe. I would also agree that we are flesh and blood subject to the
      > vagaries and mysteries of nature, but that does not discount the fact that
      > we made up of our scripts which is our thinking. Nature affects us, but
      > only to give us new personal scripts or stimulate existing scripts. For
      > example, my experience with nature causes a script that I hate winter.
      > Someone else may love winter. It is said that "Quebec is not a country
      > ...
      > it is winter". The saying does not go on to tell whether you should like
      > it
      > or not.
      >
      > The use of the term "robot" is somewhat pejorative. But as we discussed
      > before, the next evolution may well be in robot form, albeit more like Roy
      > in Blade Runner than the 1960s Robbie the Robot.
      >
      > Did you see the movie "Johnny Mnemonic"?? The action is supposed to take
      > place in 2021. There is a woman ... Anna Kalmann ... who was a previous
      > CEO of PharmaKom, who died in 2015 and has been imprinted into a computer
      > in
      > Switzerland. I think she received Swiss citizenship. She advises the
      > company from her present internet state. The point being that if we are
      > our
      > scripts then it might be possible to imprint these scripts into a computer
      > so you could live beyond your body.
      >
      > There is a documentary on the Brain on TV now.
      >
      > eduardathome
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > -----Original Message-----
      > From: Mary
      > Sent: Tuesday, January 01, 2013 8:28 PM
      > To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
      > Subject: [existlist] Re: What power to charm or harm?
      >
      > eduard,
      >
      > Biochemical algorithms are not the same as mental scripts which are at the
      > conscious level of thought. As you say, mental scripts are socially
      > formed.
      > Algorithms are genetic and affected by environment.
      >
      > If one is prone to depression and pessimism, it may be genetic,
      > environmental, or a combination. What I'm saying is that you can't
      > separate
      > algorithms from scripts and an entire environment of other people and
      > forces
      > of nature.
      >
      > I use the word environment to mean one's entire body, other people, and
      > all
      > of nature. We are not robots interconnected by a mainframe. We are flesh
      > and
      > blood subject to the vagaries and mysteries of nature.
      >
      > Mary
      >
      > --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, eduardathome wrote:
      > >
      > > Mary,
      > >
      > > "but how do you describe that which has the power to shape, harm, or
      > > charm
      > > them?"
      > >
      > > I am not sure of your meaning here, but will try an answer.
      > >
      > > The "them" is the substrate of algorithms, or "mental scripts" in my
      > > terminology. A mental script might be ...
      > >
      > > (1) I see the catch in your joke ... the wealthy pompous man who is
      > > protesting the uncleanness of the city, slips on a peel of the banana he
      > > has just finished eating.
      > > (2) In order to make you aware of this, I open my mouth and laugh ....
      > > "ha ha ha ha".
      > >
      > > So what is the "that" which had the power to cause this script??
      > >
      > > The answer is complex. All sorts of things are occurring [or has
      > > occurred] here.
      > >
      > > (1) In this culture we do not look kindly upon the pompous, especially
      > > the wealthy. Thus I have learned a mental script that has a negative
      > > value in regard to the pompous.
      > > (2) You are trying to tell a joke. Your behaviour, physical signals
      > > and
      > > the circumstance indicate this. I have learned a mental script that one
      > > should react to people who are telling jokes.
      > > (3) In this culture, the mental script for reacting to a joke is to
      > > laugh. Perhaps in other cultures it is to rub noses.
      > >
      > > The "that" is our programming that has been installed prior to the joke.
      > > In other cultures or circumstance there may be a different set of mental
      > > scripts. Your joke might not go over too well at an assembly of
      > > millionaires. Some people might not think it is funny for someone to be
      > > injured by falling. In some cases, my mental script to react may cause
      > > laughter even though I don't really see the catch in your joke. Your
      > > signal and circumstance may be sufficient in themselves to cause
      > > laughter.
      > > The value of the neural output is not necessarily dependent upon an
      > > equal
      > > value of all inputs.
      > >
      > > My point is that the scripts are the result of our learning and
      > > experience. So there is nothing mysterious going on here. The "that"
      > > are
      > > simply those things that are the subject of learning of mental scripts.
      > > I
      > > think that some of these are memes or reactions that are part of human
      > > evolution. We are evolved to live in groups and in order to ensure
      > > survival of the group, we have acquired scripts related to such as
      > > empathy, rapport and sympathy. I don’t think they are genetic,
      > > but
      > > rather taught in childhood. You are part of the group and are
      > > apparently
      > > trying to tell a joke. It is appropriate on my part, as another member
      > > of
      > > the group, to laugh. Because I don't want to make you unhappy.
      > >
      > > There isn’t some kind of external power that is causing me to
      > > laugh.
      > > What happens is all in the brain.
      > >
      > > eduardathome
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > > -----Original Message-----
      > > From: Mary
      > > Sent: Tuesday, January 01, 2013 10:59 AM
      > > To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
      > > Subject: [existlist] What power to charm or harm?
      > >
      > > eduard,
      > >
      > > I allude to Camus' absurdist philosophy as a wager opposed to Pascal's
      > > because must depend on one another and ourselves, because that's in
      > > front
      > > of us. I suppose respect for immensity of the universe can replace
      > > religious awe, but this too only emphasizes that we're alone here
      > > together
      > > in a vast cosmos and dependent on one another in one fashion or another.
      > > I
      > > can accede to your scientism of a biochemical substrate of algorithms as
      > > natural structures, but how do you describe that which has the power to
      > > shape, harm, or charm them? Human sentients are clearly not independent
      > > self-regulating machines. Thought affects and is an effect of the
      > > substrate. They are co-dependent.
      > >
      > > Mary
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      > >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > ------------------------------------
      >
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      >
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    • eduardathome
      My only point is that the idea of the apple does not reside within the apple, as you suggested. eduard ... From: Mary Sent: Tuesday, January 15, 2013 11:07
      Message 43 of 43 , Jan 15, 2013
        My only point is that the idea of the apple does not "reside" within the
        apple, as you suggested.

        eduard

        -----Original Message-----
        From: Mary
        Sent: Tuesday, January 15, 2013 11:07 AM
        To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: [existlist] Re: What power to charm or harm?

        eduard,

        When referring to anatomical differences of receptors, I forgot to specify
        sense organs which are variously configured and influence perception. My
        point is that anatomical variations determine how and what we perceive, yet
        despite these differences some of us are able to grasp the notion an object
        represents and further develop the truth about it.

        An apple is not just an apple; it represents an agricultural and commercial
        history, cultural mythology and symbolism, scientific, nutritional and sense
        properties, relationship with the environment, etc. Furthermore it
        represents how an immediate appearance is mediated as an object for the
        observer and developed into a complex truth.

        The brain is as essential to thought as the objects of thought, including
        itself.

        Mary

        --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, eduardathome wrote:
        >
        > Mary,
        >
        > The receptors do not project anything. That is why they are called
        > "receptors". I used the example of the Greeks to show how off the mark
        > people were in ages past. The reason is indeed holistic for reason that
        > one
        > tends to use mechanisms that are used in other processes. Since "seeing"
        > is
        > not understood, one can envision [to use the term] how this might be
        > similar
        > to the sense of touch.
        >
        > The receptors have a molecule which changes shape when impacted by a
        > photon
        > of light. The change causes a electrochemical signal that is sent to the
        > brain. Different molecules react to different frequencies of light. The
        > short frequencies are seen as blue, the long frequencies as red and the
        > median frequencies as green. But the eye doesn't actually "see" in
        > specific
        > frequencies. It sees with a certain efficiency so it is up the brain to
        > work out which colour is really out there.
        >
        > Where the "anatomically" difference comes into play is where people have a
        > lack of a certain receptor which may make them say green-red colour
        > confusers. Or perhaps blue-yellow confusers. If they lack colour
        > receptors
        > [the cones] entirely, they will see the world in monotone greys, using
        > only
        > the brightness receptors [the rods]. There are other factors which can
        > effect vision ... we have 3 colour receptors whereas birds have 4 and some
        > fish up to 10 ... but generally most people have the same appropriate
        > equipment and therefore as humans we can establish a colour coding for
        > lights and paints for which there is a general consensus.
        >
        > "How is this different from saying our idea about what we're perceiving
        > shapes what we see but doesn't prevent us from developing new ideas about
        > it?"
        >
        > I am not sure of the meaning of your question. My response was to your
        > previous email in which you said, "I suggest there is the power of an idea
        > residing in objects themselves which works together with the brain." I
        > disagree that the idea of an apple resides in the apple. The idea of the
        > apple resides entirely in the brain. And to go to part of your question,
        > we
        > can develop new ideas about the apple. We can do so, because the idea
        > resides in the brain, not in the apple. My idea of an good eating apple
        > is
        > that of a Pink Lady with the Gala apple coming second. I could not do so
        > if
        > the idea was in the apple itself. Sometimes we apply an idea and end up
        > munching into a wax apple.
        >
        > The other argument against the idea residing in the apple [the object] is
        > because the apple changes over time from an unfertilized flower, to a bud,
        > to a rip fruit and then falling to the ground to rot. I don't believe
        > there
        > is any mechanism or means by which the apple can change its idea even if
        > we
        > were to accept that it has its own idea.
        >
        > eduard
        >
        >
        > -----Original Message-----
        > From: Mary
        > Sent: Sunday, January 13, 2013 6:39 PM
        > To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
        > Subject: [existlist] Re: What power to charm or harm?
        >
        > You misread me, eduard. I didn't say knowledge that the brain thinks has
        > been around since antiquity; secular thought has. I don't know if
        > philosophy
        > has ever been a large part of the general view as you call it. And yes,
        > neural plasticity and brain re-scripting are new.
        >
        > For me a mental script involves thinking, but a neural program does not.
        > These however are both ideas. I reduce thinking to ideas; you reduce it to
        > neurons. Where we differ doesn't seem all that significant to me, so I'll
        > leave it for now. I don't feel pressed to make you agree with or
        > understand
        > what I think.
        >
        > In any case, several of our scripts intersect where it comes to agreeing
        > the
        > world of humans requires some changes. I don't think either of us has
        > articulated a compelling enough reason to change our scripts, or our ideas
        > about observer and observed.
        >
        > In some strange way, the notion that rays were the cause of vision is
        > interesting. There was some intuition about light and connection between
        > observer and observed happening back there. It was more holistic. Also,
        > the
        > reason sense perceptions differ from person to person is because the
        > receptors which 'project' the rays anatomically differ. It says the brain
        > receives from what it projects. How is this different from saying our idea
        > about what we're perceiving shapes what we see but doesn't prevent us from
        > developing new ideas about it?
        >
        > Mary
        >




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