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Thread: Origin of the Mind/Mental States

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    tWebber
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    Origin of the Mind/Mental States

    Are there any good arguments in favor of the view that our minds or mental states are not physical entities and cannot come from something that is physical? I'm asking just out of curiosity.

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    tWebber Chrawnus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hornet View Post
    Are there any good arguments in favor of the view that our minds or mental states are not physical entities and cannot come from something that is physical? I'm asking just out of curiosity.
    Well, that minds and mental states are not physical entities is pretty blatantly obvious for anyone with even half a brain. A simple analysis of your own mind will clear up that question pretty quickly.

    Whether or minds can come (or emerge) from something physical however, is a more complicated question, and not as easily answerable. I'm not sure how exactly mind emerging from matter would work and I'm utterly unconvinced by the argument that a mind will eventually arise if you just get matter configured in a sufficiently complex way, but I don't have any slam dunk arguments against it's possibility.

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    tWebber shunyadragon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chrawnus View Post
    Well, that minds and mental states are not physical entities is pretty blatantly obvious for anyone with even half a brain. A simple analysis of your own mind will clear up that question pretty quickly.

    Whether or minds can come (or emerge) from something physical however, is a more complicated question, and not as easily answerable. I'm not sure how exactly mind emerging from matter would work and I'm utterly unconvinced by the argument that a mind will eventually arise if you just get matter configured in a sufficiently complex way, but I don't have any slam dunk arguments against it's possibility.
    This represents Ad hominem accusations and not evidence.
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    Troll Magnet Sparko's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chrawnus View Post
    Well, that minds and mental states are not physical entities is pretty blatantly obvious for anyone with even half a brain. A simple analysis of your own mind will clear up that question pretty quickly.

    Whether or minds can come (or emerge) from something physical however, is a more complicated question, and not as easily answerable. I'm not sure how exactly mind emerging from matter would work and I'm utterly unconvinced by the argument that a mind will eventually arise if you just get matter configured in a sufficiently complex way, but I don't have any slam dunk arguments against it's possibility.
    Computer software is not physical, yet it runs on a physical chip. Think of the entire virtual worlds created on computers.

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    Troll Magnet Sparko's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shunyadragon View Post
    This represents Ad hominem accusations and not evidence.
    What does that even mean Frank?

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    tWebber Chrawnus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparko View Post
    Computer software is not physical, yet it runs on a physical chip. Think of the entire virtual worlds created on computers.
    I don't believe computer software actually exists in anything other than in the users consciousness. Unless a conscious mind is there to process/interpret what's on the screen it's just complexly arranged pixels that mean absolutely nothing.

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    tWebber
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparko View Post
    Computer software is not physical, yet it runs on a physical chip. Think of the entire virtual worlds created on computers.
    That's a good point. Computer software came from someone's mind and that person's mind is not physical.

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    tWebber
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chrawnus View Post
    Well, that minds and mental states are not physical entities is pretty blatantly obvious for anyone with even half a brain. A simple analysis of your own mind will clear up that question pretty quickly.

    Whether or minds can come (or emerge) from something physical however, is a more complicated question, and not as easily answerable. I'm not sure how exactly mind emerging from matter would work and I'm utterly unconvinced by the argument that a mind will eventually arise if you just get matter configured in a sufficiently complex way, but I don't have any slam dunk arguments against it's possibility.
    What do you think of this argument? Something cannot come from nothing. Suppose there once was only matter. Rearranging matter according to the laws of physics and chemistry will only produce a different form of matter. It will not produce something that is immaterial.

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    Troll Magnet Sparko's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chrawnus View Post
    I don't believe computer software actually exists in anything other than in the users consciousness. Unless a conscious mind is there to process/interpret what's on the screen it's just complexly arranged pixels that mean absolutely nothing.
    computer software can run by itself and come up with solutions to problems without any one watching it or interpreting it. The software is just electrical patterns run on the chips, just like thoughts are electrical impulses run on neurons.

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    tWebber Roy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparko View Post
    computer software can run by itself and come up with solutions to problems without any one watching it or interpreting it. The software is just electrical patterns run on the chips, just like thoughts are electrical impulses run on neurons.
    Computer software can also control vehicles, factories, traffic/flow control systems, household appliances and other machines, again without anyone watching or interpreting it. Screen content was never the only outcome of running software.
    Jorge: Functional Complex Information is INFORMATION that is complex and functional.

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