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

by dhw, Monday, June 12, 2017, 12:36 (493 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: The claim that your brain transmitted to you what happened during the NDE was clearly topsy-turvy, since you/your consciousness had the experience and your brain wasn’t even there.
DAVID: Again you do not understand. My consciousness returns to my brain which is now again functional and the two entities interact and my brain now informs me of the NDE experience which the consciousness memory contains.

Again you insist on separating consciousness from “me”, although in your previous post you assured me that you were “not forgetting that consciousness is an entity. It is me.” It was the entity of consciousness/you that experienced the afterlife and then returned to and informed your brain so that your physical person could inform others of your experience. Your brain did not inform you/your consciousness of what you/your consciousness had experienced!

DAVID: Generally we are close in your discussion. What I'm trying to get you to recognize is where brain growth occurred (frontal conceptual area), but was not actively used until recently and the brain densified and shrunk. Size first use second.

The fact that it was the frontal cortex which expanded makes no difference to the argument. The question is what caused expansion, and I can only go back to the point I made before: the brain grew by stages when it was needed by new concepts, though you try to downgrade the achievements of pre-sapiens (e.g.homo erectus’s use of tools and weapons, fire, cooking). We know from recent discoveries that the Neanderthals were far more advanced than homo erectus, with clear elements of what we like to call “civilization”. They certainly conceptualized, and used the resultant big brains (even bigger than ours) to implement their concepts. And early homo sapiens also used his own now maximum sized frontal cortex. The earliest cave paintings go back about 40,000 years, so how can you claim that the conceptual area was not actively used until 10-12,000 years ago? But when the now maximum–sized brain could not cope with all the “recent” conceptualizations, it densified instead of growing, and we know that densification comes as a RESULT of conceptualization, not as a precondition for it. Concepts first, size second, use of size third, new concepts fourth, new size fifth, new use sixth etc. until maximum size, use of maximum size, new concepts, densification and shrinkage. A direct chain of cause and effect.

However, none of this explains the origin of consciousness, and so the conflict between dualism and materialism remains unresolved.


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