On 9/2/2013 4:45 PM, Craig Weinberg wrote:



On Monday, September 2, 2013 7:31:57 PM UTC-4, Brent wrote:

    On 9/2/2013 3:56 PM, Craig Weinberg wrote:


    On Monday, September 2, 2013 6:11:51 PM UTC-4, chris peck wrote:

        Hi Craig

        Highlighting the word 'spontaneous' with astereixes doesnt show 
anything. Here
        'spontaneous' just means 'originates in the brain in the absence of 
external
        stimuli'. This kind of activity is often refered to as 'task unrelated' 
which
        is to say it is not activity that is bound to some external task. 
Daydreaming
        and remembering past events are common examples. You shouldn't confuse 
it with
        the idea of uncaused activity which evidently you have done.


    I highlighted them to show that the word is not being used in any cryptic
    specialized sense, but rather it is used often, and in the general sense of 
being
    wholly unanticipated. Spontaneous in this case means originating in the 
brain in
    the absence of external stimuli but it also means originating in the brain 
in the
    absence of any known cause.

    Absence of knowledge is not knowledge of absence.


Sure, but absence of knowledge about brain activity cannot be construed to rule out personal intention. Spontaneous can mean exactly what it implies.


    The study goes to considerable lengths to make this clear.. note the gist 
of the
    headings:

    Intrinsic Activity Accounts for Behaviorally Relevant Left SMC BOLD Variance
    Ruling Out Evoked Activity
    Ruling Out Stimulus-Evoked Activity
    Ruling Out Attention and Anticipation

    and finally, to directly address your claim:

    "Ruling Out Other Potential Confounds

    While sensory evoked activity and attention/anticipation are the most 
concerning
    potential confounds, other mechanisms should be considered. For example, 
global
    arousal might cause fluctuations in neuronal activity and behavior. 
*However, our
    BOLD-behavior effect should then be present in all regions or at least 
regions
    implicated in arousal (Critchley et al., 2000), not localized to the 
somatomotor
    system*. Similarly, after-effects such as the BOLD undershoot could persist 
from
    the previous trial, influencing early BOLD time points and confounding our 
results
    (Buxton et al., 1998). However, this possibility is excluded by the lack of 
a
    relationship between our BOLD measurement and ISI."

    Do daydreaming and remembering take place in the somatomotor system? 
Probably not.

    HA!  You never had a daydream that produced an erection?


Are you suggesting that the presence of spontaneous activity in the somatomotor system is more likely to indicate daydreams that cause button pushing behavior? It couldn't be the simple, obvious cause of our own personal intent.

Of course it could be the cause of your intent.

Must be some ridiculous sideshow.




    Another conclusion from the study:

    " Finally, it provides support for the intrinsic perspective on brain 
function,
    showing that the brain not only exhibits intrinsic organized fluctuations in
    neuronal activity, but that these fluctuations impact brain function and 
behavior
    in interesting and important ways."

    Not really anything there to support anything that you are claiming.

    And there's nothing to support the thesis that the brain activity is not 
part of a
    causal chain extending back to the embryo.


There's nothing to support the thesis that the brain activity is part of a causal chain either.

Sure there is, the detailed study of neurons and other brain structures which all points to them obeying exactly the same physics as everything else.

What I would say supports the thesis that the brain activity may originate in the private, intentional experience of the individual, is the fact that we, you know, experience private intentional experiences as individuals...pretty much every waking moment.

Where's the evidence that experience is not part of the causal chain? There's plenty of experimental evidence showing that a little electrostimulation of one's brain will produce an experience specific to the point stimulated. So it certainly doesn't require your intention to have an experience.

I'm not sure how much of my every waking moment in 2013 is part of a causal chain extending back to an embryo in 1968, but my guess is, not very much.

That's your guess because you wish it to be so.

I haven't felt much like an embryo lately, but I do feel pretty certain that I am intentionally writing these words to convey an understanding which I intend to convey, for personal reasons, not because of any evolutionary or neurochemical domino effects.

But you don't know that your intention is not the consequence of a deterministic causal chain (which of course is personal because part of it is inside your head).

Brent

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