On Wed, Apr 10, 2013 at 6:08 PM, meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net> wrote:

>  On 4/10/2013 2:08 PM, Terren Suydam wrote:
>
> Hi Telmo,
>
>  Yes, those are good counter examples.
>
>  But I think to say "pain and pleasure are fine-tuned by evolution..." is
> a sleight of hand. Pain and pleasure are phenomenological primitives. If
> evolution created those primitives, how did it do that? By what mechanism?
>
>  Another way to think of this is to acknowledge that pain signals are
> mediated by special nerves in the nervous system. But what makes those
> nerves any different from a nerve that carries information about gentle
> pressure?  You may be able to point to different neuroreceptors used, but
> then that shifts the question to why different neuroreceptors should result
> in different characters of experience.
>
>
> You have to ground the interpretation in behavior and its relation to
> evolutionary advantage. People who put their hand in the fire withdraw it
> quickly and exclaim to warn others.  People that don't suffer reproductive
> disadvantage.
>
> Brent
>
>
Of course, but it still involves a sleight of hand.  Let me offer this
example by way of trying to make this clear.

You have creature A which does not suffer pain. Then some mutation occurs
and creature B, descended from A, is born with the ability to feel pain
when exposed to fire. We agree that creature B is more likely to reproduce
than creature A. My question is, what is the nature of the mutation that
suddenly ushered in the subjective experience of pain?  What is the
mechanism?

Terren

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