• Metaphysician Undercover
    7.1k

    What are you arguing, that scientists tend to believe bad metaphysics?
  • ovdtogt
    667
    What are you arguing, that scientists tend to believe bad metaphysics?Metaphysician Undercover

    That clever scientists disagree with dumb people like you.
  • ZhouBoTong
    837
    But I feel there must be a point where you can begin where there is enough evidence to begin with and work up from there and find the place where it’s impossible to compare, use that point as a beginning reference.Brett

    It seems to me a comfortable position to sit back and dismiss the idea that humans might be more complex than bivalves as subjective, or too difficult to even consider. Maybe everyone could try just a little bit harder.Brett

    Ok, fair point...for the sake of a basic conversation. Sure, humans are more complex than ants. But I would hesitate to say that humans are more complex than ants IN EVERY WAY. And consciousness is one of those difficult things to measure. Sure, human consciousness is (almost certainly) more complex than an ant's, and it is also (less certainly) more complex than a dog's, and if I had to bet, I would bet that it is more complex than all other organisms on earth...but if science later told me that killer whales actually had a consciousness that was as complex as our own, I would not be shocked.

    What do we gain by just accepting the declaration that humans are the most complex organism?

    “Life Cycle of a Freshwater Pearl Mussel. The life cycle of most freshwater mussels is more complex than in most bivalves, involving the parasitism of a fish host.(http://bivalves.teacherfriendlyguide.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=24&Itemid=136).Brett

    I like science writing, haha. Notice they said "the life cycle of freshwater mussels is more complex" not mussels are more complex. "The life cycle" is a specific aspect of the mussel that can much more easily be compared as more or less complex.
  • Brett
    1.9k


    The life cycle" is a specific aspect of the mussel that can much more easily be compared as more or less complex.ZhouBoTong

    That was the point I as trying to make, not that mussels are more complex, but that there are areas of more complexity.

    What do we gain by just accepting the declaration that humans are the most complex organism?ZhouBoTong

    I think we were trying to determine if there could be something more complex than humans, then as usual it got bogged down in demands for meaning.
  • ZhouBoTong
    837
    That was the point I as trying to make, not that mussels are more complex, but that there are areas of more complexity.Brett

    Well I am happy to concede that. I think most of this thread (not just with you), that is the point I have been making (and since that is the point you are making...one (or both) of us maybe misunderstood some aspect of the other). We can only compare very specific aspects that we can then label more or less complex.

    I think we were trying to determine if there could be something more complex than humans, then as usual it got bogged down in demands for meaning.Brett

    haha, my bad. I feel like my brain automatically thinks of the one exception in any scenario and then I say, see it can't mean what you say because in this one specific example it doesn't work. sorry...it seems unavoidable...I think sometimes it is useful/productive in the conversation, and other times it just creates an unnecessary tangent when we all knew what was really meant :grimace:
  • Brett
    1.9k


    Well we all have 'brilliant' minds.
  • god must be atheist
    2.1k
    I think we were trying to determine if there could be something more complex than humans, then as usual it got bogged down in demands for meaning.Brett

    I would say it bogged up, not down. If you mean different things with the same word, there is bound to be differences in expressed opinion. If you can get to a point where people who had been contentious can agree on meaning, then it's the first step to common understanding and agreement.

    There could still be forever lasting conceptual differences, like between those who insist everything must have started sometime, even time, and those who can conceptualize things not starting ever, but existing since time eternal.
  • Pantagruel
    793
    If you can get to a point where people who had been contentious can agree on meaning, then it's the first step to common understanding and agreement.god must be atheist

    This is called "Rogerian Argument". My wife introduced me to the concept and I found it helpful.
    https://www.thoughtco.com/rogerian-argument-1691920

    Interestingly, Karl Popper (who I am just reading for the first time) suggests the opposite, which I found intriguing.
  • god must be atheist
    2.1k

    Everything I think of has been thought of before in philosophy.

    The difference between you and me, Pantagruel, I think, is that I think of these things, without any prior reading, whereas you seem to be reading about them first.

    The main thing is that we agree when our terms have been defined identically in our minds, because our understanding of topics, however differently arrived at, is the same. (-:
  • god must be atheist
    2.1k


    In fact, you and I could form a formidable writing pair. I would provide the ideas, and you, the precise and exact references.
  • Pantagruel
    793
    It's all learning. I have been down the 'ab initio' route of believing that I could recreate everything from first principles, and it is not without its merits. That was essentially what Descartes was doing when he decided to systematically doubt everything, then build up from a foundation of certainty.
  • Pantagruel
    793
    In fact, you and I could form a formidable writing pair. I would provide the ideas, and you, the precise and exact references.god must be atheist

    Interesting. I feel I may have misrepresented myself somewhat. For the purposes of the forum, I tend to stick pretty close to source materials and ideas as a framework. In practice, most of what I write is extremely theoretical-conjectural and highly cross-disciplinary. A lot of stuff like ovdtogt's ill-fated speculations on space and time, but I try to remain within a framework of both historical and current-theoretical accuracy. Could consciousness be something akin to a quantum field, for example?

    Honestly, I like reading the 'ground-up' theories because I know that they are the product of genuine and deep beliefs. Per Popper, they just need to be 'tested' against (possibly integrated with) whatever other relevant material is already out there. And there is a lot.
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