Bruce Fenton on UFO/ET Contact 780,000 Years Ago |458|

#21
Thanks for the link about the book, The Restless Clock. At over 14 pounds for the Kindle edition, I will have to wait a while to read it, but it certainly promises to show how the sweeping assumption that living things are passive, not active agents is not the complete picture & leaves scientists & others w/ a warped picture of living things as well as the non-living. This makes me think of the objection I ran across early in my biology education: that science can't even adequately define what makes something a living thing. For example, one of the characteristics of living things is the ability to reproduce. The offspring of a horse & donkey is a mule, which is sterile (actually I learned not too long ago that mules sometimes have young, but it is considered in the Middle East as an evil omen). So, is a mule not living since it can't produce offspring, but then when it does, it's alive but it portends evil? How about viruses? They reproduce themselves, but don't engage in respiration, so what are they exactly? So, the American Indians may have had a really deep insight into western or white man consciousness: an Indian said that, "our people see everything as alive, but the white man sees everything as dead."
There are some people who claim that every cell is conscious to some degree:
http://www.basic.northwestern.edu/g-buehler/FRAME.HTM
I think I would characterise viruses as packages of chemicals. They only reproduce using the mechanisms of other organisms.

All this illustrates the fact that orthodox science doesn't think it is a big deal to define what is life! Maybe in truth every cell has a link to something non-physical - just in order to live.

As a former chemist, the extraordinary thing about cells is that so many pretty reactive chemicals co-exist in them, and all the reactions happen without appreciable bi-products. In laboratory organic chemistry, you usually have to do a synthesis step by step, isolating and purifying each intermediate product before setting up for the next step - because otherwise you get masses of cross reactions and end up with something brown and gloopy that chemists know as 'tar'. This guy is a Christian, but you don't have to buy into that in order to appreciate what he is saying:


David
 
#22
I think this is a tricky question. The earliest computers filled a room and were called "giant electronic brains" because they could add up a column of figures in a second! After the novelty was over, people thought a computer needed to do something more impressive - like do a piece of algebra, or translate some text into a foreign language in order to be called intelligent/conscious. The distinction between Artificial Intelligence and Artificial Consciousness is extremely murky.
"The distinction between Artificial Intelligence and Artificial Consciousness is extremely murky."

I don't agree. I consider it to be very distinct, in fact a category error to use the term 'conscious' in relation to a computer. Lots of people seem to delight in pretending that they are the same, especially science-fiction writers. But fiction isn't fact.

Of course we have to relate that to the context where our own consciousness is often dismissed as merely some effect of material objects, not something in its own right, Against this background of misunderstanding, it's hardly surprising that some can so easily become confused over the abilities or properties of machines.
 
#24
There are some people who claim that every cell is conscious to some degree:
http://www.basic.northwestern.edu/g-buehler/FRAME.HTM
I think I would characterise viruses as packages of chemicals. They only reproduce using the mechanisms of other organisms.

All this illustrates the fact that orthodox science doesn't think it is a big deal to define what is life! Maybe in truth every cell has a link to something non-physical - just in order to live.

As a former chemist, the extraordinary thing about cells is that so many pretty reactive chemicals co-exist in them, and all the reactions happen without appreciable bi-products. In laboratory organic chemistry, you usually have to do a synthesis step by step, isolating and purifying each intermediate product before setting up for the next step - because otherwise you get masses of cross reactions and end up with something brown and gloopy that chemists know as 'tar'. This guy is a Christian, but you don't have to buy into that in order to appreciate what he is saying:


David
Thanks for your link to more evidence that living units at all levels are active agents! A fascinating theory called "energy shunting" was offered in my evolution course in college; it was used to explain why blind salamanders that live in pitch-black caves develop other sensory capabilities to adapt to the lack of light. This energy shunting, if correct, seems like more support to purposeful intelligence. I have run across numerous references in mystical literature especially that point to infinite regression in the sense of the distinct possibility that every grain of sand on a beach may be a "planet" to the organisms living on it & that subdividing continues w/o end. I will never forget the absolutely creepy description in The Autobiography of a Yogi of fakirs who hold up their arms in the air until they wither away & the agonized reaction of the dying cells as this happened which was detectable to the fakirs, like the screaming of a great crowd of dying people. Mystics commonly say the universe is held together by truth, compassion, & forbearance; another version says Being, Love, and Wisdom are at the core of the Real, so I think you are certainly correct in saying all life has to be linked to a non-physical source. Look at the quantum physics ideas of the Super Position and String Theory.
 
#25
Look at the quantum physics ideas of the Super Position and String Theory.
Caution - superposition is really a mathematical concept, and relates to the way two quantum mechanical wavefunctions can be combined to produce another valid wavefunction!

Also, even though String Theory has been taught and researched (it is way too hard for me) for 40 years, senior physicists in the field, such as Peter Woit and Sabine Hossenfelder, are calling it a dead theory because it simply hasn't produced any testable result! Concepts like the multiverse and 'brane theory' are offshoots of string theory and would also be dead if this is true. (a 'brane' is an N-dimensional generalisation of a surface - a membrane!)

The problem seems to be that so many people have invested so much time understanding String Theory that there is enormous reluctance to dropping it! the idea, It is also supposed to be incredibly 'beautiful' once you have read and understood the reams and reams of obscure maths that lead up to it!

David
 
Top