Evolution and humans: big brain size or use (Evolution)

by dhw, Friday, June 16, 2017, 12:55 (179 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: According to your beliefs, YOU and your inseparable consciousness are having the temporary experience of an afterlife in which YOU and your inseparable consciousness will live on without a brain. And so in an NDE, it is you and your consciousness who return to the revived brain and tell it what happened, so that it can instruct the relevant parts of your body to inform other people about it.
DAVID: Yes, But until my brain and consciousness reconnect, I have no knowledge of the episode.

Of course you do! It was you and your inseparable consciousness that consciously lived through and remember the episode. That is the whole basis of your belief in an afterlife in which the brainless you is still you! But until the reconnection with the brain, you and your inseparable consciousness have no way of communicating your knowledge of the episode to other people.

DAVID: I develop concepts by using my brain.
dhw: “Develop” is another of your ambiguities. First comes the creation of the concept, then comes the realization of the concept. You use the brain to realize it.
DAVID: Calculus had to be invented by two thinking humans. That is development.

And if you/your consciousness are a separate entity from your brain, as you believe, and you/your consciousness do the thinking, the activity of the brain can only be in response to the thinking, because according to you the brain is the RECEIVER of consciousness.

dhw: Either the brain creates all concepts or it doesn’t. If concepts depend on the brain, do you believe that in your afterlife you will be incapable of conceptualization? Yes or no.
DAVID: I use my brain to create concepts. Probably my self/consciousness is static, unchanging in afterlife, but following the NDE findings, has experiences.

Conceptualizing means forming ideas. Some NDE patients return with a totally different attitude towards life, and if experiences change attitudes, then clearly they are the trigger for new ideas. Do you think you will have experiences in your afterlife without responding to them? How can you still be you and yet be a zombie? (But once again, I need to stress that I am not taking sides in the materialism versus dualism debate. I am only following through the logic of your own dualistic beliefs.)

dhw: […] each jump was caused by new concepts, and once the jump had been made, the size was adequate for subsequent realization of concepts until more complex concepts (now complexity is relevant) demanded new actions. Example: hominin X comes up with the concept of a spear, but this requires new manufacturing skills, new use of muscles, new calculations (e.g. weight and balance)…and in order to make concept into material reality the brain responds by expanding, whereas 12,000 years ago it had to respond by densifying.
DAVID: I agree in order to develop new athletic ability and new manufacturing skills a more useful larger brain was needed. Therefore a new species with 200cc more was provided and that extra size allowed for the development of these newly required mental and physical skills. I'm still with God doing the speciation.

In other words, the larger brain was needed in order to realize the concepts, just as rewiring is needed for more modern concepts. But rewiring is the result of the need, whereas you claim that enlargement is preparation for the need. It’s precisely the same argument as your claim that pre-whales and pre-humans underwent divine surgery before entering the water or descending from the trees, instead of responding to the demands or opportunities resulting from changes in the environment.

God has his role in both scenarios. In my proposal, he would have invented the mechanism through which organisms are able to change themselves by adaptation and/or invention according to need or opportunity. Legs to flippers/bent to upright AFTER entering the water/descending from the trees, until they reach their final form; larger brains AFTER new concepts until they reach their final size. Then densification when size is no longer adequate.


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