Re: [asa] scientific fact vs. ideology?

From: David Clounch <david.clounch@gmail.com>
Date: Wed Mar 18 2009 - 20:43:25 EDT

Bernie,

Please note, I am not taking sides here. Just making observations.
So, I think you have valid questions too.

I was a bit shocked at the suggestion on the list in other threads that
characteristics of the human mind are totally supernatural because they
cannot exist in nature. Its almost as if when you sit across the dinner
table you are staring at God - at a supernatural phenomena. Which cannot be
studied by science (of course).

Another take is the mind is not supernatural but has meerly been
manufactured in a supernatural act. So a supernatural act made this
non-natural human mind, the act cannot be studied by science but the
product can be. Also, one by one the minds must have been made
individually because the genes (ie, nature) didn't produce them (according
to the theory).

What does all this do to the use of science to study human minds? What does
this do to Gregory's social science? What if each brain was made
differently? What if some brains have extra features? The imagination goes
a bit wild.

All this seems to be rather contrary to previous attitudes on the list that
the legitimate realm of knowledge is just what science can study.

Now, I believe there is a soul. But I see no evidence that mental capacity
is a function of the soul as opposed to being a function of the brain. So I
think mental ability is not itself supernatural. It is inherited. Gee, I
guess I did just sort of weigh in, didn't I? I suspect one cannot really
retreat into the supernatural to get rid of design theory. It raises more
problems than it is worth.

And the last observation is - when one does retreat into the supernatural
to avoid "design recognizers in the mind" one is committing the same
mistake for which the YEC crowd receives so much derision and
vilification. This is the last list on earth I'd expect people to commit
that error.

So, Bernie, I hope this doesn't make me into some kind of reductionist or
naturalist.
I'm still questioning everything.

Thanks,
David Clounch

On Wed, Mar 18, 2009 at 1:10 PM, Dehler, Bernie <bernie.dehler@intel.com>wrote:

> I have more questions than answers.
>
>
>
> David Clounch said:
> “If one postulates (or believes) that computers can achieve
> conciousness, then isn't this a belief that mind and pattren recognition
> is possible in the natural realm? Not supernatural at all?”
>
>
>
> If the human mind is “supernatural,” then what about the ape mind? What
> about the worm mind? What about the Venus Flytrap “mind?” Is there some
> point where an animal mind is “supernatural” but another animal’s mind
> isn’t?
>
>
>
> …Bernie
> ------------------------------
>
> *From:* asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu] *On
> Behalf Of *David Clounch
> *Sent:* Wednesday, March 18, 2009 10:59 AM
> *To:* ASA
> *Subject:* Re: [asa] scientific fact vs. ideology?
>
>
>
> Hey Guys,
>
> May I make an observation? If one postulates (or believes) that computers
> can achieve conciousness, then isn't this a belief that mind and pattren
> recognition is possible in the natural realm? Not supernatural at all?
>
> I just wanted to point out that there seems to be a dichotomy in thoughts
> here. Some want to say that pattern recognizers that recognize design are
> not part of nature and there is no mathematical basis for anything in this
> universe to do that processing - therefore the human recognizer is
> supernatural.
>
> The opposite view is the phenomena is possible in nature.
>
> And computer awareness, intelligence, etc etc, must by definition be
> natural. Unless one speculates there is a "soul in the machine"...hahahaha.
> I'm personally not going to entertain the notion of supernatural
> computers.
>
> Dave C
>
> On Wed, Mar 18, 2009 at 7:57 AM, Alexanian, Moorad <alexanian@uncw.edu>
> wrote:
>
> This should be evident to every conscious mind. Try stopping using the word
> "I" if you do not believe me.
>
> Moorad
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu] On
> Behalf Of Dehler, Bernie
>
> Sent: Tuesday, March 17, 2009 5:41 PM
> Cc: asa@calvin.edu
> Subject: RE: [asa] scientific fact vs. ideology?
>
> What is an example of a behavior in humans that shows that one is 'self
> aware?' Then we can see if it applies to computers. We can also see if all
> humans are 'self aware' by that same example. For example, if wondering
> "who am I?" is an example of being 'self aware,' not all humans are
> concerned with it, so does that mean they aren't 'self-aware?'
>
> ...Bernie
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Stephen J. Krogh, P.G. [mailto:panterragroup@mindspring.com]
> Sent: Monday, March 16, 2009 3:53 PM
> To: Dehler, Bernie
> Cc: asa@calvin.edu
> Subject: RE: [asa] scientific fact vs. ideology?
>
>
> Depends on what you mean by "know." Programming for following a specific
> subroutine when power drops below a certain level doesn't really require it
> being self aware.
> =========================================
>
>
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu
> > [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu]On Behalf Of Dehler, Bernie
> > Sent: Monday, March 16, 2009 5:33 PM
> > Cc: asa@calvin.edu
> > Subject: RE: [asa] scientific fact vs. ideology?
> >
> >
> > Stephen J. Krogh said: "Are they self-aware?"
> >
> > It depends on what you mean. If a computer knows that its power
> > is low and it has to walk over to an outlet and plug itself in,
> > does that mean it is "self-aware?"
> >
> > ...Bernie
> >
> > PS: Robo girlfriend/boyfriend is getting closer:
> > http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090316/ap_on_re_as/as_japan_girl_robot_2
> > http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ezxhoamM3WY
> >
> > There are lots of groups interested in sexbots- just a matter of
> > a (short) time. It may be an interesting ethical debate. The
> > article is not about sexbots but there are many interested in
> > them and the article shows it is getting closer.
> >
> >
> >
> > > -----Original Message-----
> > > From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu
> > > [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu]On Behalf Of Dehler, Bernie
> > > Sent: Monday, March 16, 2009 3:29 PM
> > > Cc: asa@calvin.edu
> > > Subject: RE: [asa] scientific fact vs. ideology?
> > >
> > >
> > > ""matter cannot think.""
> > >
> > > It may depend on your definition of "think." Can computers
> > > "think?" They do make decisions. They can even "appear" to be
> > > sentient. It may be possible to have a conversation with a
> > > computer (over the internet) and not even realize it is not a
> > real person.
> > >
> > > ...Bernie
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
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> >
>
>
>
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Received on Wed Mar 18 20:44:10 2009

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