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Re: [existlist] Harmless ideas about ideas

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  • eduardathome
    Interesting discussion. The brain studies itself and develops notions about itself. It doesn t appear this happens with any other animal, that the object of
    Message 1 of 6 , Jan 17, 2013
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      Interesting discussion.

      "The brain studies itself and develops notions about itself. It doesn't
      appear this happens with any other animal, that the object of its thought is
      thought itself."

      Why should we assume that animals are not capable of having the object of
      its thought as the thought itself?? I don't think that anyone has actually
      interrogated an animal to determine this one way or the other. And the
      animal cannot write down its experience and thus convey it to humans. I
      would say it occurs because there is no real difference between a human
      brain and an animal brain.

      But lets go to specifics ... sometimes that helps. Monkeys are known to
      have dictatorships and can go on conquests to take over territory from other
      monkeys. Are we to say that the Hitler-monkey does not at times reflect
      upon his act to undertake a conquest?? That he might think about his
      thinking about the act?? I would say ... yes ... although it can't be to
      the degree of humans who have a passion for that sort thing. There is no
      point in the animal salivating over his thinking because it has no direct
      benefit, unlike humans who can write a book and make money that increases
      their personal survival capability.

      "Yet I still maintain the principles underlying an object can be posited,
      because without their being there potentially, they could never be mediated
      by observation and reason."

      I disagree. The principles underlying an object are created by humans when
      they do the observation. One cannot say that these principles are separate
      from human thought and exist on their own. When we observe ... say and
      apple ... we identify certain aspects of the apple such as colour and
      roundness. That's very limited and are not the "principles" of an apple.
      Other objects are red and round. Some apples are green.

      If the principles of an apple resided in the apple, then anyone could know
      the principles, even if they had never seen an apple before. For example a
      Siberian nomad may not even know that an apple can be eaten which is surely
      a principle. He/she would only know so when either experimenting by biting
      into it or by asking someone.

      I would agree, however, that thought is a dialectic been observer and the
      observed, albeit objects can't talk so it isn't much of a discussion. There
      is some kind of exchange, but it arises from the human asking the right
      questions. For example, gold is just another rock, until an experienced
      prospector can pick it out. The "experience" resides in the human, not in
      the rock.

      eduard



      -----Original Message-----
      From: Mary
      Sent: Wednesday, January 16, 2013 5:22 PM
      To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: [existlist] Harmless ideas about ideas

      Okay then. Ideas about objects reside in the brain, as well ideas about the
      brain. The notion of an object, including the brain, and all an object will
      come to represent through research and history is the potential of an object
      which is mediated by speculative reason not merely signals to the brain
      received during perception of its properties. Yes, speculative reason
      requires biochemical processing just like every other brain function. Yet I
      still maintain the principles underlying an object can be posited, because
      without their being there potentially, they could never be mediated by
      observation and reason.

      One moment we study the brain or thought itself; the next we study that
      observation and develop what we assume are presuppositions and conclusions.
      If we are only our brains, we're hopelessly caught in a solipsistic feedback
      loop without any hope of objective perspective. If we are more than one or
      two brains and share mutual but separate observation, we have a better
      chance.

      Each of the specific divisions of science employs speculative reason or
      thought developing itself. A body of knowledge or the current shape of any
      truth or determination of an object's notion, including the brain itself, is
      the result of reason.However, there is good reason to be skeptical about the
      results of reason. Thinker and thought are united in an object-subject unity
      which differs from animals. We are aware of our brain and how thinking
      switches between objective and subjective roles, so information about the
      degree to which we are separate from objects of perception is questionable.
      This is phenomenology not brain chemistry.

      So I agree with Hegel that philosophy is the science of speculative reason
      and that thought is a dialectic between observer and observed. The brain
      studies itself and develops notions about itself. It doesn't appear this
      happens with any other animal, that the object of its thought is thought
      itself.

      I fail to see how these ideas are as theoretically harmful as some religious
      perspectives. I worry a cybernetic approach to thinking will lead to further
      devastation of our planet when humanoids have no use for food, water and
      air, and simply mine the earth away for their 'sustenance'.

      Mary




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    • Mary
      eduard, Let s set aside the possibility that we can t disprove what we can t prove or whether animals are aware they are thinking, and return to my original
      Message 2 of 6 , Jan 18, 2013
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        eduard,

        Let's set aside the possibility that we can't disprove what we can't prove or whether animals are aware they are thinking, and return to my original assertion. Besides, if animals do attend to their thoughts as humans do, then this supports my premise that it happens. I can observe an apple and observe my observation without examining my neural processing.

        The potential principle in any object, including our brain and thought, is that it's other than us but is also for itself and for us. As you say, an unfamiliar object doesn't automatically present a principle to us; the object requires mediation in order to discover the principle. Is the principled imagined or is it inherent?

        Mary
      • Mary
        Just to clarify eduard, is the principle also inherent in the object whether it requires our mediation or not? A principle is not developed without, or in
        Message 3 of 6 , Jan 18, 2013
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          Just to clarify eduard, is the principle also inherent in the object whether it requires our mediation or not? A principle is not developed without, or in isolation from, an object. If the brain is developing principles about the brain, the principle is immanent in both the object and the observer. If you contend that no other objects have brains, I remind you that animals do. Apples, of course, do not, but this does not mean the principle is developed separately from the apple. The apple plays a role in consciousness.

          Mary

          --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "Mary" wrote:
          >
          > eduard,
          >
          > Let's set aside the possibility that we can't disprove what we can't prove or whether animals are aware they are thinking, and return to my original assertion. Besides, if animals do attend to their thoughts as humans do, then this supports my premise that it happens. I can observe an apple and observe my observation without examining my neural processing.
          >
          > The potential principle in any object, including our brain and thought, is that it's other than us but is also for itself and for us. As you say, an unfamiliar object doesn't automatically present a principle to us; the object requires mediation in order to discover the principle. Is the principled imagined or is it inherent?
          >
          > Mary
          >
        • eduardathome
          Mary, The principle is imaged .... in the human brain. Which isn t to say that the apple does not exist. And neither does it imply that an apple is something
          Message 4 of 6 , Jan 18, 2013
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            Mary,

            The principle is imaged .... in the human brain. Which isn't to say that
            the apple does not exist. And neither does it imply that an apple is
            something that can't be eaten. Apples do exist and they can be eaten and
            they taste good. Especially the Pink Lady apple. Not so much the Granny
            Smith. Although some people seem to like the Granny Smith ... for reason I
            can't fathom.

            Where we started on this, was my sole point that our thinking occurs
            entirely in our brains. The brain does not just observe and measure. It
            does all the rest of the stuff; from consciousness, to behaviour and
            emotion, to mysticism, to spirituality, to philosophy, to science, to people
            who express that the 2nd amendment gives the right to carry/own guns. You
            have offered that our thinking is somehow completed by the idea contained
            within an object. As if to say that the expression, "I like that apple",
            cannot actually be done in the mind [the brain] without somehow the "idea"
            of apple exiting from the apple to join in and complete this process of
            thinking. I take it that you have offered this example as one which shows
            that our thinking does not occur entirely in the brain.

            At least that is what I think you are saying.

            Here you are saying that "the object requires mediation in order to discover
            the principle." A mediation is a communication or exchange leading to some
            kind of settlement between parties. In the process of human thinking, the
            apple can't communicate and neither has it any means for an exchange of
            thought. And if you took it literally, the apple can't require anything as
            if to say, "you must mediate with me in order to get at my principle".

            There is nothing "in" the apple pertaining to the process of thinking. The
            inside contains seeds. If human encounters an apple, he/she gives it
            whatever principle that may come to mind at the moment. And if the only
            principle that comes to mind is that of eating, you do so and throw away the
            core with its seeds. Done. You may not even think about history or origins
            or the benefit of the apple to humankind. This is not complicated.

            My point has always been that it is the brain that is the singular means by
            which we think about whatever. I don't expect others to wholly accept this
            view, but I believe it is of fundamental importance in understanding
            ourselves. We have gone on too long with the idea that our thinking occurs
            elsewhere, especially in religion where it is assumed that gods can entre a
            prophet's brain and tell him/her what to do or what to communicate to the
            congregation. The gun lobby is not about the 2nd amendment. The amendment
            is not forcing these people to own guns against their will. No one says, "I
            own this gun because the 2nd amendment says I must have one. They want guns
            because they are programmed to think that, in present US society, guns are
            good for you by providing some kind of protection. To take away their
            assault rifles is seen as a treat to their mental comfort. And the NRA
            plays on that theme. If you don't have a gun, those "other" people will
            come and kill you with their gun.

            eduard

            -----Original Message-----
            From: Mary
            Sent: Friday, January 18, 2013 12:09 PM
            To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: [existlist] Re: Harmless ideas about ideas

            eduard,

            Let's set aside the possibility that we can't disprove what we can't prove
            or whether animals are aware they are thinking, and return to my original
            assertion. Besides, if animals do attend to their thoughts as humans do,
            then this supports my premise that it happens. I can observe an apple and
            observe my observation without examining my neural processing.

            The potential principle in any object, including our brain and thought, is
            that it's other than us but is also for itself and for us. As you say, an
            unfamiliar object doesn't automatically present a principle to us; the
            object requires mediation in order to discover the principle. Is the
            principled imagined or is it inherent?

            Mary
          • eduardathome
            My point is that the principle is not developed separately from the brain. The apple doesn t play any role in consciousness. There isn t any part of the
            Message 5 of 6 , Jan 18, 2013
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              My point is that the "principle" is not developed separately from the brain.

              The apple doesn't play any role in consciousness. There isn't any part of
              the consciousness [our awareness of our existence] that is dependent upon
              some role that an apple may play. Knowledge of the apple may modify what we
              think in the sense of my being aware that that I am the eduard that eats
              apples, but the apple does not contribute to the act of awareness. I am
              aware all by myself and that act occurs within my brain not elsewhere, even
              in part.

              I would agree that an apple has attributes such as roundness and red colour
              [or green], but it does not have an "idea" as a thought element that somehow
              enters my brain to complete my thinking. To put it another way, if a neuron
              in my brain outputs a "true" signal that this is an apple, it does not have
              an input whose source is some neuron or equivalent device in the apple.

              The subject is "thinking". My observation or experience of an apple can
              facilitate my awareness of myself in relation to apples, but the apple does
              not think and thus cannot play a role in my own thinking or my act of
              consciousness.

              eduard

              -----Original Message-----
              From: Mary
              Sent: Friday, January 18, 2013 1:37 PM
              To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
              Subject: [existlist] Re: Harmless ideas about ideas

              Just to clarify eduard, is the principle also inherent in the object whether
              it requires our mediation or not? A principle is not developed without, or
              in isolation from, an object. If the brain is developing principles about
              the brain, the principle is immanent in both the object and the observer. If
              you contend that no other objects have brains, I remind you that animals do.
              Apples, of course, do not, but this does not mean the principle is developed
              separately from the apple. The apple plays a role in consciousness.

              Mary

              --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "Mary" wrote:
              >
              > eduard,
              >
              > Let's set aside the possibility that we can't disprove what we can't prove
              > or whether animals are aware they are thinking, and return to my original
              > assertion. Besides, if animals do attend to their thoughts as humans do,
              > then this supports my premise that it happens. I can observe an apple and
              > observe my observation without examining my neural processing.
              >
              > The potential principle in any object, including our brain and thought, is
              > that it's other than us but is also for itself and for us. As you say, an
              > unfamiliar object doesn't automatically present a principle to us; the
              > object requires mediation in order to discover the principle. Is the
              > principled imagined or is it inherent?
              >
              > Mary
              >




              ------------------------------------

              Please support the Existential Primer... dedicated to explaining nothing!

              Home Page: http://www.tameri.com/csw/existYahoo! Groups Links
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