On 8/30/2012 5:39 PM, Craig Weinberg wrote:



On Thursday, August 30, 2012 8:19:32 PM UTC-4, Brent wrote:



    If morals didn't exist, why would we choose to invent them? What possible 
purpose
    could be served by some additional qualitative layer of experience on top 
of the
    perfectly efficient and simple execution of neurochemical scripts? Don't 
you see
    that the proposed usefulness of such a thing is only conceivable in 
hindsight -
    after the fact of its existence?

    We didn't invent them.  They evolved.  Evolution has no foresight, it's 
random.


Randomness is not omnipotence. It doesn't matter how many words I write here, they will never evolve into something that writes by itself.

Exactly. Randomness is more likely to kludge up an adaptation than create an efficient design from scratch. Your words don't evolve because they don't move around and recombine randomly - except in your head. Are you an Intelligent Design creationist?



    It takes advantage of what is available.  Feeling sick at your stomach 
after eating
    rotten food is a good adaptation to teach you not eat stuff like that again.


No, it isn't a possible adaptation at all. There would not be any such thing as 'feeling' or 'sick' - only memory locations and branching tree algorithms. This is what I am saying, feeling makes no sense as a possibility unless you are looking back on it in hindsight after the fact. Sure, to you it seems like nausea is a good adaptation, but that's naive realism. You assume nausea is possible because you have experienced it.

That's not an assumption - that's empiricism. An assumption would be that a brain can't instantiate feelings.

You would have to use evolution to explain the possibility of feeling in the first place, and it cannot.

      So what feeling would work to guide you not harm a child? - how about 
that 'sick
    at your stomach' feeling.


That implies that T-cells need a feeling to guide them not to kill friendly 
cells.

No it doesn't.  T-cells are not social animals who need to care for their young.

That H2O needs a feeling to guide it not to dissolve non-polar molecules. If you believe in functionalism, then all feeling is a metaphysical epiphenomenon. I think the opposite makes more sense - everything is feeling, function is the result of sense, not the other way around. T-cells do feel. Molecules do feel. How could it be any other way?

But then you have no way to explain why they feel this instead of that.

Brent

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