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Great Pumpkin

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Argument against an Unembodied Mind
« Reply #15 on: February 24, 2012, 07:13:19 pm »
Or, if you like:

The Mind is the  letters in a book, the Brain is the book.

If you burn the book, you don't have a Mind.
God is not the Father. At least, he's not apparent to me.

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Archsage

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Argument against an Unembodied Mind
« Reply #16 on: February 25, 2012, 01:17:24 am »
GreatPumpkin wrote: Or, if you like:

The Mind is the  letters in a book, the Brain is the book.

If you burn the book, you don't have a Mind.


Close, but not yet there. The Brain is the Book and the Mind is the Story. Burn the Book and you probably won't be able to read the Story. But the Story needn't have the Book in order to exist, of course. And if you get rid of the Story, all the Book is, is paper and ink.
“It is of dangerous consequence to represent to man how near he is to the level of beasts, without showing him at the same time his greatness. It is likewise dangerous to let him see his greatness without his meanness..."  –Blaise Pascal

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Great Pumpkin

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Argument against an Unembodied Mind
« Reply #17 on: February 25, 2012, 07:36:33 am »
Archsage wrote:
Quote from: GreatPumpkin
Or, if you like:

The Mind is the  letters in a book, the Brain is the book.

If you burn the book, you don't have a Mind.


Close, but not yet there. The Brain is the Book and the Mind is the Story. Burn the Book and you probably won't be able to read the Story. But the Story needn't have the Book in order to exist, of course. And if you get rid of the Story, all the Book is, is paper and ink.

   A story is conceptual: of the mind.  How can a mind be of the mind?
God is not the Father. At least, he's not apparent to me.

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jbejon

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Argument against an Unembodied Mind
« Reply #18 on: February 25, 2012, 08:05:41 am »
GP,

I still can't get much of an argument from what you've written.  It seems to me that your overall argument is:

(1) God is an unembodied mind
(2) Unembodied minds are incoherent
(3) Therefore, God does not exist

Fine.  Only (2) is controversial.  So, you want to support (2) with an argument of the form:

(4) Anything that can reasonably be referred to as a "mind" would have to fulfil condition X
(5) An unembodied mind cannot, by virtue of being unembodied, fulfil condition X
(6) Therefore, an unembodied mind is incoherent

The question that remains, then, is, What is this condition X?

As best as I can make out, you've suggested that X is "being identical with itself" or "being able to causally interact with other things".

However, none of these conditions work.  If I have/am an immaterial mind, then my mind is clearly identical with itself.  It is also able to causally interact with other things, e.g. my brain.

So, I can't find an argument that persuades me here.

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Great Pumpkin

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Argument against an Unembodied Mind
« Reply #19 on: February 25, 2012, 08:21:40 am »
Archsage wrote:
Quote from: GreatPumpkin
Or, if you like:

The Mind is the  letters in a book, the Brain is the book.

If you burn the book, you don't have a Mind.


Close, but not yet there. The Brain is the Book and the Mind is the Story. Burn the Book and you probably won't be able to read the Story. But the Story needn't have the Book in order to exist, of course. And if you get rid of the Story, all the Book is, is paper and ink.

   A story is conceptual: of the mind.  How can a mind be of the mind?
God is not the Father. At least, he's not apparent to me.

5

Great Pumpkin

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Argument against an Unembodied Mind
« Reply #20 on: February 25, 2012, 08:49:05 am »
jbejon wrote:
GP,

I still can't get much of an argument from what you've written.  It seems to me that your overall argument is:

(1) God is an unembodied mind
(2) Unembodied minds are incoherent
(3) Therefore, God does not exist

Fine.  Only (2) is controversial.  So, you want to support (2) with an argument of the form:

(4) Anything that can reasonably be referred to as a "mind" would have to fulfil condition X
(5) An unembodied mind cannot, by virtue of being unembodied, fulfil condition X
(6) Therefore, an unembodied mind is incoherent

The question that remains, then, is, What is this condition X?

As best as I can make out, you've suggested that X is "being identical with itself" or "being able to causally interact with other things".

However, none of these conditions work.  If I have/am an immaterial mind, then my mind is clearly identical with itself.  It is also able to causally interact with other things, e.g. my brain.

So, I can't find an argument that persuades me here.

   I think my question revolves around the ontological nature of the terms: "mind" (as a thing that functions as a mind) and "unembodied" (free of any framework or structure).

   First, i think its silly that for the most part the theists have agreed that an unembodied mind in this universe is hard to imagine, but if they invent new rules (namely that UM's can exist somehow) it becomes just a priori fact.

   

   Usually you would start with an inkling that it is possible in the real world before resorting to imaginary worlds.

   

   After all we can have a vigorous mind-body debate under atheism, right here on earth.

   

   But the theist knows that what ever comes of that debate mmust apply to their god, so they always skew it towards that.

   

   So, id just like to start at the basics, analogies aside and define the mind in a way we are all happy with.
God is not the Father. At least, he's not apparent to me.

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Great Pumpkin

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Argument against an Unembodied Mind
« Reply #21 on: February 25, 2012, 09:56:11 am »
And re-reading your syllogism, a think that is very close to what i am thinking.

   Let add a term from Tillich, an "organizational principle".

   There would have to be something that organizes or embodies the mind in order for it to have logical coherency.

   

   X would be, at minimum, an organizational principle that embodies the mind in order for it to function as such.

   

   Note, i am being incredibly lenient and generous for a materialist to say this. But i want the whole discussion laid out on the.table.
God is not the Father. At least, he's not apparent to me.

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Johan Biemans (jbiemans)

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Argument against an Unembodied Mind
« Reply #22 on: February 25, 2012, 09:59:42 am »
I think condition X would be some sort constraint or container to keep the mind contained and distinct from other minds.

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Great Pumpkin

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Argument against an Unembodied Mind
« Reply #23 on: February 25, 2012, 10:27:21 am »
jbiemans wrote: I think condition X would be some sort constraint or container to keep the mind contained and distinct from other minds.

   Yes, someting that keeps it discreet: embodied.
God is not the Father. At least, he's not apparent to me.

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Archsage

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Argument against an Unembodied Mind
« Reply #24 on: February 25, 2012, 10:54:03 am »
GreatPumpkin wrote:
Quote from: Archsage
Quote from: GreatPumpkin
Or, if you like:

The Mind is the  letters in a book, the Brain is the book.

If you burn the book, you don't have a Mind.


Close, but not yet there. The Brain is the Book and the Mind is the Story. Burn the Book and you probably won't be able to read the Story. But the Story needn't have the Book in order to exist, of course. And if you get rid of the Story, all the Book is, is paper and ink.

A story is conceptual: of the mind.  How can a mind be of the mind?


Yeah, so I guess you don't really get how analogies work...
“It is of dangerous consequence to represent to man how near he is to the level of beasts, without showing him at the same time his greatness. It is likewise dangerous to let him see his greatness without his meanness..."  –Blaise Pascal

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jbejon

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Argument against an Unembodied Mind
« Reply #25 on: February 25, 2012, 01:21:21 pm »
GP wrote: X would be, at minimum, an organizational principle that embodies the mind in order for it to function as such.

OK, I don't really know what you mean by "an organisational principle".  I'm not being obtuse--I really don't.

Either way, if you define a mind as something that needs to be "embodied", then, sure, the concept of an unembodied mind is trivially incoherent.  But the claim that a mind needs to be embodied is what you're meant to be demonstrating rather than presupposing.

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Great Pumpkin

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Argument against an Unembodied Mind
« Reply #26 on: February 25, 2012, 02:33:15 pm »
jbejon wrote:
Quote from: GP
X would be, at minimum, an organizational principle that embodies the mind in order for it to function as such.

OK, I don't really know what you mean by "an organisational principle".  I'm not being obtuse--I really don't.

Either way, if you define a mind as something that needs to be "embodied", then, sure, the concept of an unembodied mind is trivially incoherent.  But the claim that a mind needs to be embodied is what you're meant to be demonstrating rather than presupposing.

   If, for sake of argument, a mind does need to be embodied, then by discovering that it needs to be embodied is presupposing?

   

   If the fact of the matter is that minds need to be embodied, then i think i have shown how that seems to be necessary.

   

   Btw, organizational principle is a tillich term , one that he beleives is god.

   

   I dont want to have to argue the theist position but it seems i might have to! Mainly because everyone seems to be hanging back and remaining hyperskeptical.

   

   What i have done is argued for a theistic mind, but still show that it must have at least one basic principle to be called a mind. Even if that is, somehow, in the form of a command of "BE!"

   

   But, as you say, it isnt very convincing...

   

   

   So, what argument besides "i can imagine it , its not logically impossible " is there?

   

   Thats where i am hung up. Ive argued a bare minimum, and the barest of minimum for a theistic mind, but no one is convinced.

   

   Perhaps we are all materialist, without our presuppositions?
God is not the Father. At least, he's not apparent to me.

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Great Pumpkin

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Argument against an Unembodied Mind
« Reply #27 on: February 25, 2012, 02:44:56 pm »
jbejon wrote:
Quote from: GP
X would be, at minimum, an organizational principle that embodies the mind in order for it to function as such.

OK, I don't really know what you mean by "an organisational principle".  I'm not being obtuse--I really don't.

Either way, if you define a mind as something that needs to be "embodied", then, sure, the concept of an unembodied mind is trivially incoherent.  But the claim that a mind needs to be embodied is what you're meant to be demonstrating rather than presupposing.

   Do you agree that a mind must, at least, be bound by something, like the law of identity, the causal principle, or something?

   I don't think i'm presupposing, here, it seems logically necessary.

   

   Frankly, no offense, i think what is happening is i am expressing a logical truth and being accused of a presupposition because it seems so rational.

   

   I feel a little like ive shown that triangles can only have 3 sides, then being accused of presupposing they need 3 sides.

   

   I guess i am looking for something other than skepticism to argue for an unembodied mind.
God is not the Father. At least, he's not apparent to me.

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Arthur42

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Argument against an Unembodied Mind
« Reply #28 on: February 25, 2012, 02:57:56 pm »
I'm wondering why God would be a mind in the same sense that I have a mind.  I would think that my mind is analogous to God's mind but that they are not the same thing.  As such it seems kind of futile to reason from our own minds to God's mind.  Even if we can show that our minds are immaterial (I doubt this), Christians don't actually argue that God has a human mind, so in what sense does it even matter if our minds are immaterial?

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Great Pumpkin

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Argument against an Unembodied Mind
« Reply #29 on: February 25, 2012, 04:12:57 pm »
Arthur42 wrote: I'm wondering why God would be a mind in the same sense that I have a mind.  I would think that my mind is analogous to God's mind but that they are not the same thing.  As such it seems kind of futile to reason from our own minds to God's mind.  Even if we can show that our minds are immaterial (I doubt this), Christians don't actually argue that God has a human mind, so in what sense does it even matter if our minds are immaterial?

   1. Then why call it a mind? What would it be, a computer? Something else? This would be a rebuttal from ignorance.

   2. You are right that it barely matters what the truth is, a christian can simply assert things are different in their magic la la land without anything more than saying "i can imagine it, its not logically impossible."
God is not the Father. At least, he's not apparent to me.