Brain, Behaviour and Extensionalism

Bouh at Bouh at
Sat Apr 10 03:45:12 EST 2004

On Fri, 9 Apr 2004 22:40:25 -0300, "NMF" <nm_fournier at>

>> In particular, the universe doesn't need our perceptions nor our
>> intelligence to exist.
> How do you know that for certain?  

Experiments show that once someone dies, the universe continues to
function normally.

>We have no basis or point of reference
>to measure this secondary hypothesis.  Even the measurable laws of physics,
>that we use to deem a glimpse into nature and construct of the universe, may
>in fact be artifacts of the human brain.  Moreover, what we may perceive as
>even the most intrinsic features of our universe could in fact be a
>consequence of how the brain is organized.  Until we change the manner in of
>brain organization,  then what remains constant in perceptual frame may be
>consider as intrinsic features of the universe while those that do not may
>in fact not be a fundamental process of the universe.  (Even this statement
>has a circularity to it).
>With respect to your comment. Some have argued, especially physicist John
>Wheeler, that the only reason for the universe to exist was to support the
>emergence of the "conscious observer". In this case, the existence of a mind
>at a later stage of the cosmic evolution would have a retrograde effect
>extending all the way back to the very creation of the universe.
>Wheeler (1977),
>                    Is the very mechanism for the universe to come into
>being meaningless or
>                    unworkable or both unless the universe is guaranteed to
>produce life,
>                    consciousness, and observership somewhere and for some
>little time in its
>                    history-to-be?
>(I'm just playing devils advocate with you suggesting that we should be
>careful about considering what are fundamental processes, properties, and
>constants of our universe)

Of course, maybe we are all in a kind of matrix. But whenever you
invent such an hypothesis, you should build a scientific theory, w/
experiments and some kind of falsification capability, so that it can
be checked up seriously. Note that I'm not against the expression of
any idea, since it can generate interesting discussions and ideas.

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