Thoughts on the Penrose-Hameroff hypothesis

The meaning of life is to become God’s children through the atonement provided through Jesus, covering and erasing our guilt. God wants, no, demands that we become like little children. (Do you know any little children that think their lives are meaningless? No, that is taught or learned from the world.)

Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.
Mark 10:14-16

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Yes, you are right, but how do I come to atone for my sins? If these do not exist because of my inability to decide, the fact that the ability to decide is very important for the meaning of life, I do not know if you are capable of seeing it.

I do not know if you are capable of realizing the contradiction between the Christian life and the computational theory of the mind that is mechanistic or ultimately deterministic, that is, it does not include free will as an element of the equation, rather on the contrary, it despises it as a misconception and a rhetorical trap.

Some people must be (or made) capable of violating the program

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Like a glitch in the matrix… and all it takes is a single instance for the system to crash

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The only thing necessary is to know that the Christian God is real. We have objective evidence of his providential interventions into the lives of his children.

Let God be true, even though everyone is a liar, as it is written: That you may be justified in your words and triumph when you judge.
Romans 3:4

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Actually, I think I am, thank you.


How odd that this is still a topic of debate… I think I am, or I think therefore I am.

Who would deny their existence? The question is like an oxymoron.

Back when I considered Kant’s critique of the ontological argument, I noticed something in considering nothing. While it is a contradiction to posit the existence of nothing, we can say nothing is in the garage, or nothing happened yesterday. We can also imagine nothing in our imagination, and yet it appears from the point of view or being. Necessarily. As it’s impossible to consider it apart from being. Our being. As I am beginning to see, Wittgenstein knocked on this door pretty hard.

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There you go, putting words a word in my mouth – my remark was not deeply philosophical. ; - )

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:roll_eyes: what can I say… “I’m a fan of Piper”??

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There are many processes that we still don’t understand, but we don’t invent fanciful possible explanations that deviate from the rest of nature simply because it may be complex and unknown. I think there is an inherent bias when we look at consciousness because we want it to be special.

Maybe. But isn’t it pretty interesting even if it should turn out to be just a state of matter and energy? Expecting everything to have a mechanistic explanation doesn’t seem so reasonable to me. From the inside it doesn’t seem that my ideas and values are reducible to physics and chemistry.

If we aren’t talking about consciousness, wouldn’t you expect to find a mechanistic or naturalistic explanation for any other unknown process we observe in nature?

That’s the inherent bias that makes me skeptical of most attempts to explain consciousness through convoluted processes.

Well I do expect to find a natural basis even for consciousness but consciousness has other capacities beyond rationality including intuition, imagination and emotional intelligence. I don’t think consciousness involves any magic but if we tried to study it in strictly objective ways we would greatly restrict what it was we were studying. Science cannot answer every kind of question and yet we have other kinds of question. Would it be rational to ignore those other questions?

Though this does describe us the vast majority of the time, there are conditions where this is not the case. Brain damage and tumors have been known to cause behavior which is not according to the victim’s desire. And then there is Paul’s description in Romans 7 of finding himself doing things against his will and desire. For the habits of sin are also capable of damaging our freedom of will so that we find ourselves acting against our desires.

If the question is how the brain creates consciousness then I would expect science to be able to answer that question.

Point taken.

And what is this thing that you are imagining to be created by the brain?

I see philosophical texts like the Stanford encyclopedia trying to define consciousness to distinguish what humans do from other living organisms and I don’t see that it is successful. Any cell is aware of itself because it has to repair itself and that is in addition to whatever awareness they have of their environment. The encyclopedia talks about being aware that one is aware. And that only makes me laugh, asking if cells or multicellular organism are not capable of repairing their information gathering functions. In which case they would have to be aware whether they are aware or not. LOL

What I suspect is that like intelligence, consciousness is a vast collection of different abilities, functions and experiences which we are plastering one simple label over. And while I am sure that some of those are unique to humans and some only found in organisms with a nervous system, I don’t see much discernment of what those particular ones are. I think it very likely that what most people have in mind is the sort of abstract conceptual linguistic functions that symbolize oneself, the world, as well as activities like consciousness. And while I do think that is unique to human beings, it seems to me rather a bit like football fans defining consciousness in terms of an awareness of the final scores and events in recent football games – defining consciousness in terms of our own peculiar interests. And the same goes for any distinction between organisms with a nervous system compared to those that don’t have one. Of course I quite agree that all these things add a great deal to consciousness which is very significant, but it doesn’t change the fact that all living things MUST also be conscious in their own way as well.

Since we have evidence for both the existence of the supernatural and truth in the Bible (please recall ; - ), and the latter pretty definitively tells us that we have agency and that we are responsible for our actions, I would not expect to find a purely mechanistic explanation supplanting them. (But by all means, keep looking!) Blaming Schrödinger’s cat and making it a scapegoat in avoidance of our accountability (for instance and to badly mix metaphors ; - ) would seem a disingenuous dodge and reminiscent of Adam’s sin.

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Why not non-living things that possess a degree of functionality and situational awareness that possibly exceeds certain organisms at this time.

A basic feature of consciousness is the ability to act without being caused and to make choices. I would not argue against the possibility of animals having this ability, or AI programs as technology advances.