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Human consciousness is much more than mere brain activity

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posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 11:53 AM
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reply to post by Raelsatu
 


I have always viewed science and spirituality as 2 different texts on the same subject. I think of it like this, think of a TV set, you have a manual to tell you how to operate this television set, AND then there is the repair manual used by techinicians to repair it and explain why it does what it does. You see? Science is the repair manual and the Bible,per se, is the operation manual.




posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 11:56 AM
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reply to post by AceWombat04
 


Interesting post AceWombat. I also found an article on the study you refer to

www.newscientist.com...


Free will, or at least the place where we decide to act, is sited in a part of the brain called the parietal cortex, new research suggests.

When a neurosurgeon electrically jolted this region in patients undergoing surgery, they felt a desire to, say, wiggle their finger, roll their tongue or move a limb. Stronger electrical pulses convinced patients they had actually performed these movements, although their bodies remained motionless.

"What it tells us is there are specific brain regions that are involved in the consciousness of your movement," says Angela Sirigu (pdf format), a neuroscientist at the CNRS Cognitive Neuroscience Centre in Bron, France, who led the study.


One problem with trying to figure out if we have free will or not, is that I don't think we fully understand what free will really is.

In addition, I believe free will is more of an ideal, than an absolute.

I think it was R. Steiner that said, "We only have free will to the extent that we are conscious of what motivates us to action"

Since, very few people (if any) are fully conscious of what motivates their actions, none of us fully has free will either.

Although, maybe that's just unncessarily complicating the issue



edit on 20-6-2011 by EthanT because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 11:57 AM
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I didn't read too far past the start of the second page before I felt the need to shoot down some wishful thinking. Every bit of everything is physical. Our bodies, our emotions and even our thoughts. They are ALL physical in that if you had proper nano-tech you could literally find the neurons firing as a person thinks, recognize the signal pattern and read their thought. That would of course be extremely difficult considering our neurological structure is composed of billions upon billions of interconnected neurons. The simple act of bending one of your fingers requires an incredibly complex structure of neurons numbering in the hundreds of millions. We are among the most evolutionary advanced life forms on Earth, the complexity of our brain is the result of billions of years of evolution since the start of life here. Life itself, our bodies, are composed of atoms just like the rest of the known universe. The difference between you and the keyboard you type with is how the atoms are rearranged. In order for the atoms of our body to harbor a soul or spirit, the same soul or spirit must be present in EVERY atomic structure.



posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 11:58 AM
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I believe it is NOT ONLY MAN that is more --- all creatures have much more than the computer mind -- a soul!!!



posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 12:00 PM
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Originally posted by Plotus
You live, you die, nothing. But are you so sure?


Pretty sure. Of course I'm not 100%, I fully admit I could be wrong, but "Live, Die, Nothing" is my belief.



posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 12:01 PM
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reply to post by renegadeloser
 


I note it seems no one has mentioned out of body experiences yet and near death, how does normal science answer this? And by the way, it has nothing to do with oxygen starvation. Why, I spent years researching this area along with telepathy working with one of the world’s leading researchers within this area.

see following!

www.skeptiko.com...

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Also, see some of our papers regarding this area. My name Norman Vigus.

www.papimi.gr...
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posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 12:09 PM
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Originally posted by outerlimits
reply to post by renegadeloser
 


I note it seems no one has mentioned out of body experiences yet and near death, how does normal science answer this? And by the way, it has nothing to do with oxygen starvation. Why, I spent years researching this area along with telepathy working with one of the world’s leading researchers within this area.

see following!

www.skeptiko.com...

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Also, see some of our papers regarding this area. My name Norman Vigus.

www.papimi.gr...
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Se also:

www.bing.com...



posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 12:10 PM
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reply to post by Dystopiaphiliac
 

Yawn. Can you tell us how all this creates fear?

Not how it creates a "reaction in the organism to withdraw from a situation", something I can program a robot to have. How it creates fear. You know what fear is. We're waiting.

If you can do that, then doing the same for love, lust, hatred, compassion, jealousy, the color red, the color blue, the sound of a piano, and the smell of feces will all be a cakewalk.

There is a gap that the know-it-alls have still failed to bridge.


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posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 12:12 PM
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reply to post by outerlimits
 


If indeed there was discovered a soul or separate consciousness that is not a part of the physicality of our brain, then surely it would still be tied inexorably to the existence of our brain structure and it would still have to exist somewhere as something. This is perhaps where most people lose sight of reason. Everything that exists, does so. It is somewhere as something. A soul would still be as real a thing as gravity and light.

Maybe there is an ulterior connection to everything, existing nestled deep within the proposed "extra dimensions" of M theory. As of now none of that has been proven even remotely and this whole thread is based upon opinion and wishful thinking.



posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 12:18 PM
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reply to post by laiguana
 


How much "evidence" does one avatar have that another avatar "exists" in a game world after it logs out?

I suspect that the extent of the evidence for the existence of a soul amounts to pretty much this. I see evidence that certain people have souls, because I note their unusual ability to do things machines cannot do -- such as create "art." I understand that many scientists have a problem with this, but I don't let it bother me any more then I let religious people bother me with their particular beliefs and customs.

Car and driver, avatar and player, body and creator (artist). It's all the same analogy.



posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 12:23 PM
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reply to post by NewlyAwakened
 


Why should I tell you what fear, love, lust, hatred, compassion and jealousy are when so many intelligent psychologists and scientists have already discovered the complex chemicals coursing through our veins distributed between nerves at the terminal button through the synapses?

Why should I tell you the color and light perception is the intake of photons through the lens reflected onto millions upon millions of rods and cones in the rear of our eyes, then sent down the optic nerve, reversed in the optic chiasm and thus sent into the visual cortex when dozens of intelligent scientists have already discovered this?

All of these things you ask of me have already been answered. Obviously you meant to ask what is it that is you perceiving these things. I don't know what you or I in the sense of things other than I am the construct of billions of individual life forms interconnected working in unison. I am billions of individual life forms working in unison. Why isn't the universe already so amazingly incredible to you that it makes you want to scream with joy? Judas freaking priest chill out and enjoy life before you die.



posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 12:27 PM
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Originally posted by Crayfish

Originally posted by laymanskeptic
OK kids. The solution to this "problem" - the "hard problem" (of David Chalmers), is so simple, you will find it hard to believe.

You say it is "simple" but then tell us we have to read a number of esoteric books in order to understand it. That doesn't sound simple to me.

The structure behind the phenomenon is simple. Understanding why it is so, is not so simple. I hope I got that clear.


I'm a programmer and I code logic loops all the time, I've also studied AI in degree level computer science and know all about feedback loops. I've seen nothing to suggest that these structures are anything but mechanical. Such structures can even be physically mechanical such as in the case of speed governors. To simply say that "logic loops" are the simple answer to consciousness is missing out all the hard bits of the problem. They may have some role in why consciousness arises but to offer them as an answer is as useful as saying that consciousness arises due to our use of language.

Fair enough. But name one thing in the universe that isn't "mechanical" ? I know it doesn't taste nice, but everything emerges from simple "mechanical" rules, whether abstract or physical. The key to understanding consciousness is to understand the nature of these strange loops, which is the abstract structure of self-reference and self-awareness.


I find the hard problem of consciousness the most fundamental mystery of life. There are so many interesting aspects to the problem.

True. The problem explodes into many facets. It is worth discussing.


One aspect is the illusion of indivisibility that a conscious mind has. Our bodies are colonies of millions of cells but somewhere inside us is a singular thing that cannot conceive of itself being split into multiple parts. A thought experiment: Imagine we could split your brain in two, each half with it's own eyeball, and keep both halves alive and "conscious". Which half would be YOU? There is an atomic aspect to consciousness that resists the idea of being split into two parts.

Did you split just through the cerebral cortex (through the corpus callosum)? Or through the cerebellum and hypothalamus too, and through the other parts that some neurologists believe are vital to consciousness?

YOU are an overlapping of higher level functions (thought) and lower level functions (fundamental desires, which are felt, and which can be argued to feel more real than how abstract thought "feels"). So it's not just a left-right division, there is also a top-bottom problem. These circuits activate concurrently - there are actually many more components contributing to YOU, and they all feedback off each other, from which the YOU emerges. If the connections were only one way (i.e., feedforward), there wouldn't be a self-aware YOU.

Feedback, again, is the essential key to self-awareness. But I know what you mean... that doesn't explicitly answer the hard problem. Chalmers knows this. Qualia is slippery.

This is the reason why I say that understanding why loop structures explain consciousness is tricky ("hard to believe") - there is a logic hidden within the logic. It's tricky because the very structure of the descriptive act IS the thing itself that is being described. It is the loop describing itself as a loop, the very act of which is itself a loop.

Oh my, I'm not making it easier, am I...

But I hope you see the peculiarity involved. Loops, by themselves, are simple. But loops, as a description of consciousness, needs a certain sophistication of understanding, and should not be dismissed as useless descriptors. This is far deeper than what your programming language and experience can help you understand.


Another aspect is that it is very attractive to take consciousness out of the physical realm and cast the brain as a holographic representation of a system that exists in a higher state of reality. That seems to solve a lot of our problems as we're no longer dependent upon a colony of cells for our existence. The problem of how such a system can attain consciousness does not go away though, we simply move the problem to a higher dimension. We still don't know how it could come into being.

Correct. That's why we need to look at it structurally, regardless of where it is in the "physico-abstract" spectrum.


The fact is that consciousness appears to come into being around us all of the time. It appears to gradually grow in babies as they become aware of the world around them. At between three and four years old (for most children) something clicks inside them and they realise that thing in the mirror is themselves. Some people will claim to have memories before this, but if your think back to the origins of your own consciousness it will probably be at this age where you start to become conscious. So what is it? I think therefore I am, but what is I? I am convinced that I am indivisible and there can only be one of me, but at the same time I exist as a series of thoughts inside a colony of biological cells.

A great problem and needs more explanation than describing it as a logic loop.

Sorry if I gave the impression that I was explaining consciousness.

Consciousness cannot be explained by simply describing it. The description itself needs to be understood. And understanding that requires... something else...
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posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 01:07 PM
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Originally posted by 0zzymand0s
reply to post by laiguana
 


How much "evidence" does one avatar have that another avatar "exists" in a game world after it logs out?

I suspect that the extent of the evidence for the existence of a soul amounts to pretty much this. I see evidence that certain people have souls, because I note their unusual ability to do things machines cannot do -- such as create "art." I understand that many scientists have a problem with this, but I don't let it bother me any more then I let religious people bother me with their particular beliefs and customs.

Car and driver, avatar and player, body and creator (artist). It's all the same analogy.


If anyone attempts to stick to evidence as normally required by conversional science in such matters, this means you have to produce evidence and replicate-able results it’s not going to happen that easy, as we are talking about realms beyond sciences present abilities. It's all rather particle physics logic in that many things are inferred due to our inability to observe some occurrences, but we seem often readily able to accept them. The fact is all matter is dependent on energy fields and frequencies without which our so called perceived reality would just not exist. 99% of physical matter is made up of nothing more than space, but our preprogrammed perceptions would have us believe otherwise. It’s more a case of the none physical has more substance to it than our so called physical. It all gets very pedantic, and philosophical, like what is proof, and what is reality?
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posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 01:33 PM
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Here is a video scientifically showing there is perception beyond matter. And that in fact all we perceive around is illusion created by us individually and collectively. This speaks to consciousness beyond the brain or matter period for that matter. It is the soul or consciousness or the operator that animates the body it is not a result of the bodies chemical and mechanical workings.




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posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 01:35 PM
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a while ago, someone in the 'Gray Area' on ATS said that the brain is a computer for the soul to process the world around us.

an interesting notion.



posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 01:35 PM
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Well, is human conscioness much more than a brain activity?

Let me tell you that after having loads of OBEs from when I was a child to present day I still don't know the answer.

I can't say I'm convinced there's more to it and that my brain wasn't/is not "playing games" with me??

What I am convinced in however is that the brain structure is mirroring the structure of the universe with all its stars grouped in galaxies that are grouped together in great "walls" and then there's the enormous voids where no matter exists in between each "wall". That's been already said in a recent thread and I fully agree. Simply amazing!!

How about an universal conscioness



posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 01:56 PM
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reply to post by dimburg
 


Same here. Had tons of obe's as a kid, and regularly lucid dream and explore the cosmos.

There's simply no damned good reason to include the belief of mind being separate from the body.

Everything experienced can pretty much be explained rationally.

We're stuporsta-genies is all.

That's reason enough



posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 01:56 PM
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reply to post by solid007
 


That is a great addition to the thread. Have you considered then how it is that we all see the same thing? If the image is not really there, but just a picture generated in our brains why will everyone see that same thing? I thought of that the other day when I was driving home from work. Your brain is part of a universal consciousness. The things that we perceive in this universe we can see because we are on the same frequency. Just because we cannot "see" other frequencies does not mean that they do not exist or are any less real than this one that we can "see". I have read articles that say that the brain is a receiver of a frequency that we all share. That we all see the same things says to me that we all really do share this consciousness..



posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 02:07 PM
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Originally posted by outerlimits
reply to post by renegadeloser
 


I note it seems no one has mentioned out of body experiences yet and near death, how does normal science answer this? And by the way, it has nothing to do with oxygen starvation. Why, I spent years researching this area along with telepathy working with one of the world’s leading researchers within this area.


You spent years researching NDE's and you don't know how science accounts for them?

Do you still not know?



posted on Jun, 20 2011 @ 02:09 PM
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Originally posted by hawkiye
It is the soul or consciousness or the operator that animates the body it is not a result of the bodies chemical and mechanical workings.


Then why don't "souls" also operate in corpses or other inanimate objects?

Also, what is a "soul" and what evidence do we have that they even exist?







 
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