On Mon, Mar 11, 2013 at 10:50 PM, Craig Weinberg <whatsons...@gmail.com> wrote:

>> And it would be easy to show that physics was incomplete by
>> demonstrating biological systems operate contrary to physics.
> If I pickup a basketball and throw it up in the air, that result is not
> contrary to physics, but neither is it expected by physics. Physics is
> incomplete to describe how high I will decide to throw the ball.

But physics does describe how high you will decide to throw the ball,
since physics describes the movement of the ball and the movement of
the matter in your body. If you don't accept this then you believe
that your body will behave CONTRARY TO PHYSICS. That is what contrary
to physics means! It would be easy to show that something funny was
going on in a laboratory. You could take a neuron and measure the
transmembrane potential which will indicate according to our knowledge
of physics that the neuron will not fire, but then observe that -
CONTRARY TO PHYSICS - the neuron does fire. If this never happens, if
each and every interaction in your body is IN ACCORDANCE WITH PHYSICS,
then the body as a whole will behave IN ACCORDANCE WITH PHYSICS. And
insofar as physics is mechanistic - deterministic or probabilistic -
the behaviour of the body will be mechanistic.

>> But according to the public view biological systems follow mechanistic
>> rules. That means that everything you do is consistent with these
>> mechanistic rules.
> The extent to which they seem to be following mechanistic rules is
> proportional to the distance from our native scale of description. If you
> look at cells, it's somewhat less mechanistic than if you look at molecules.
> If you look at the brain as a whole, it is less mechanistic than cells.  Our
> consciousness is associated with our entire nervous system throughout a
> lifetime, so looking at any phenomenon smaller than that is only looking at
> a snapshot cross-section. That kind of a partial map can't refer to human
> consciousness, but only to sub-personal consciousness which we aren't
> directly aware of. On the level of cells and molecules, we don't exist.

But how could this possibly happen? It's like saying that every part
of the computer behaves mechanistically, but the computer as a whole
does not.

>> But you don't believe that everything you do is
>> consistent with mechanistic rules. So where is the experimental
>> evidence showing that these rules break down?
> Where is the evidence that shows that the content of a TV show breaks the
> rules of pixel illumination on the TV screen? Until you can conceive of the
> relation between subjective experience and objective bodies properly, you
> are going to continue to insist that for TV programs to be real, there must
> be some pixels which are not produced by the TV screen which are injecting
> the plot of the show into the other pixels. You are swallowing your naive
> view of the universe as bodies in space completely. What I propose is that
> we accept the natural partitioning that we experience personally, and extend
> that to the rest of nature on every level and description. Our mind is not
> composed of our body, but of sub-minds, just as our body is not composed of
> our mind but of sub-bodies (cells and then molecules). Each side appears
> utterly different - opposite to the other, but that is only the effect of
> consciousness itself. From the absolute perspective, there is only
> experience presented and experience re-presented (bodies).

Consider only the publicly observable behaviour of any system in the
universe. Can the mechanistic rules broken? In what part of the system

Stathis Papaioannou

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