Bi-Weekly Report: The Mind and Consciousness
A few weeks ago, Weekend Fisher did a blog entry about the rational mind being a natural phenomenon:
This paragraph seems to be the major motivator for her entry:
Here is why I think it matters: if you visit the atheist forums on the internet, you will meet so many ex-Christians who were (once, long ago) totally sold on the idea that either the Bible was infallible or the earth was 10,000 years old (or both). My argument here is not meant for those Christians who believe that the Bible is infallible or the earth is 10,000 years old. It is meant for those Christians who engage in and largely accept scientific findings as honestly derived and trustworthy. Young earthers are at risk of being picked off by atheist snipers because they believe things that are increasingly difficult to defend. In the same way I believe that insisting on a supernatural explanation for consciousness will become increasingly difficult to defend. And it’s probably a peripheral issue, hardly worth risking your faith for it. I expect that all Christians -- and all people of good conscience -- want the truth of a matter.
I showed this to Stan on Atheism-Analyzed, and he wrote a reply to that:
Since then, there have been two more articles done:
Here is an excerpt from Stan’s latest reply:
And the list of processes contains just these attempts to “see” a thought (the first seven are just tests for the contents of a thought):
1. “Tools like Rorschach tests”, et. al. These tools are tests not for the physical capture of a thought, but for analyzing the contents of thoughts. This applies to the first six items listed as well.
2. Brain Scans. These scans do not show thoughts or mind; they show increased blood flow. The additional nutrients being shuttled to actively functioning parts of the brain, and nothing more. What the neurons are doing is entirely and completely unknown, even thought they are reacting to a question or issue. And how that neuronic activity translates into a mind is a layer beyond the neuronal unknown, and which is completely untouched by any scan of any blood flow Or even of bioelectric discharge monitoring.
3. Taking visual signals being transmitted to the brain and reconstituting them outside the skull into visual images is not the observation of a brain function, and is not a mental image. It is more akin to stealing cable signal from your neighbor, not stealing his actual pixels. Visual imaging signals are not thoughts.
This is a compelling topic that has been touched on by Christian apologists in the past:
In addition, here is an article from New Humanist on the subject:
Enjoy, and have a blessed day!!!