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Consciousness and the Paranormal — Part 11

Discussion in 'General Freewheeling Chit-Chat' started by Gene Steinberg, Dec 26, 2017.



  1. Gene Steinberg

    Gene Steinberg Forum Super Hero Staff Member

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  2. smcder

    smcder Paranormal Adept

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    Off the immediate topic but I [email protected] you would find it interesting. It ties in the Victorian spiritualist movement post Darwin with contemporary movements in Russia that led to the "god builders" movement...which he connects to Kurzweil's "transhumanism". An interesting history.

    I'll try to find a transcript.

    The Immortalization Commission by John Gray – review

    PS John Gray is a Stevens fan.
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2017
  3. Constance

    Constance Paranormal Adept

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    I'll listen to it tomorrow. Have a good and safe trip. We'll catch up on Prigogine and Stengers when you get back. :)

    A song for the road:

     
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  4. Pharoah

    Pharoah Paranormal Adept

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    @Constance I'm not sure what Stengers I read... may not have been Stengers at all... a distant memory
     
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  5. smcder

    smcder Paranormal Adept

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  6. smcder

    smcder Paranormal Adept

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    "Now comes a real problem. We are explaining that we never expect to get a microscopic configuration that will lead all the gas to the left of the box. But we started from such a configuration. How did we get there in the first place? The real problem is not to explain why one goes to equilibrium, but why there are systems out of equilibrium to start with. For the gas, obviously the system was not isolated: an experimentalist pushed the piston. But why was there an experimentalist? Human beings are also systems out of equilibrium, and they remain so (for some time) thanks to the food they eat, which itself depends on the sun, through the plants and their photosynthesis. Of course, in order to be able to take advantage of their food, humans also need their genetic program, which itself results from the long history of natural selection.

    As discussed e.g. in Penrose [87], the earth does not gain energy from the sun (that energy is re-radiated by the earth), but low entropy (likewise, we seek low entropy rather than energy in our food); the sun sends (relatively) few high energy photons and the earth re-radiates more low energy photons (in such a way that the total energy is conserved). Expressed in terms of “phase space”, the numerous low energy photons occupy a much bigger volume than the incoming high energy ones. So, the solar system, as a whole, moves towards a larger part of its phase space while the sun burns its fuel. That evolution accounts, by far, for what we observe in living beings or in other “self-organized” structures."
     
  7. Constance

    Constance Paranormal Adept

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    I haven't yet read this paper you cite but will do so alongside reading Prigogine-Stengers.
     
  8. Alien

    Alien Paranormal Novice

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    I don't know the extent what and what not, has been explored in this thread and it's previous incarnations but anyway;

    I find it fascinating how far the aspects of the paranormal and extraterrestrial (as is the religiously spiritual) go however they are treated.
    If we say "yep, we know for sure that it is just a psychological phenomenon, due to different factors or possible mental deficiencies" then we have a whole large field of research there, which still has it's large uncertainties.
    And if we go the other way and treat it the opposite (to say, as a literal thing), then we have our answer to if we are alone in the universe, to which out of that rises a whole sea of questions to do with both our and their purposes in all of this.

    As psychology tends to be my leaning for a great amount of things, it happens to be where I lean largely with the paranormal. Still, drawing the line can be hard because we first have to draw that line to come to conclusions on often really elusive stuff which changes situation to situation.

    Just my thoughts.
     
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  9. Constance

    Constance Paranormal Adept

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  10. smcder

    smcder Paranormal Adept

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    @Pharoah what was the book on morphology? I think...you mentioned it as an influence, the author I think also illustrates...been a while since we discussed.
     
  11. smcder

    smcder Paranormal Adept

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    Never mind!

    On Growth and Form - Wikipedia
     
  12. Constance

    Constance Paranormal Adept

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  13. Constance

    Constance Paranormal Adept

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    Last edited: Dec 31, 2017
  14. Constance

    Constance Paranormal Adept

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    Short Treatise on Foraminiferology
    (Essential on modern and fossil Foraminifera)

    Jean-Pierre Bellier, Robert Mathieu, Bruno Granier
    (2010).

    Short Treatise on Foraminiferology (Essential on modern and fossil Foraminifera)

    Extract:

    " 3. Reproduction

    Of the approximately 4,000 living species, the life cycle of only 30 of them is well-known. Studied in the laboratory the cycle of benthic foraminifers is haplo-diplophasic. One generation is haploid, the next one diploid (Fig. 4 [​IMG]). The haploid forms are called gamonts. They, by division of the nucleus, produce gametes (undifferentiated sex cells). The fusion of two gametes produces a diploid individual, the schizont, which is multinucleate and reproduces through mitosis. After meiosis and division of the cytoplasm around each nucleus, the schizonts produce new gamonts. Gamonts and schizonts are distinguishable both by test size and by the dimensions of their initial chamber. The gamonts are also called the megalospheric form and the schizonts the microspheric form.

    In planktonic foraminifers, there is no dimorphism and probably no asexual reproduction in accordance with their strategy of life. In many species a layer of calcite known as the "calcitic crust" is secreted on the chambers of the last whorl during gametogenesis; its function is unknown (resistance to dissolution?).

    A great number of fossil forms were described before the life cycle of the foraminifers was known. A number of morphotypes differing only in size and in the dimensions of the initial chamber (the proloculus) were called discrete species. Readjustments after the discovery of the two phases of the cycle led some micropaleontologists to give a double specific name to one taxon, a practice that is contrary to the rules of Linnean nomenclature. Among the Nummulites such double specific names are particularly frequent."
     
  15. Constance

    Constance Paranormal Adept

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  16. Constance

    Constance Paranormal Adept

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    Ker Than, Symmetry in Nature: Fundamental Fact or Human Bias?

    Symmetry in Nature: Fundamental Fact or Human Bias?

    Extract:

    ". . . Mario Livio, a senior astrophysicist at the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, wonders if our biological preference for symmetry is biasing our perception of the world, influencing what humans find beautiful or even affecting the way we conduct science.

    Livio is the author of The Equation That Couldn't Be Solved (2005, Simon & Schuster Trade), a book that explores symmetry in everything from biology and physics to music and the visual arts.

    "Because our brains are so fine tuned to detect symmetry, is it possible that both the tools that we use to determine the laws of nature and indeed our theories themselves have symmetry in them partly because our brains like to latch onto the symmetric part of the universe and not because it's the most fundamental thing?" Livio wonders. . . ."
     
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  17. Constance

    Constance Paranormal Adept

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    @Soupie, do you think the attraction to symmetry originates in the neurons (or the brain) or in the world? As I see it, of course, the brain works to organize impressions and perceptions of that which is encountered in the world by protoconscious and conscious living beings.


    I've discovered a long-developed blog titled "Neurosceptic" (now included within the Discovery site) and finding there numerous articles that I think might be of interest to those following this thread. Here are two:


    After 15 Years in a Vegetative State, Scientists Partly Restore Consciousness in Patient
    By Carl Engelking | September 25, 2017

    After 15 Years in a Vegetative State, Scientists Partly Restore Consciousness in Patient - D-brief


    The Remarkable “Curvature Blindness” Illusion
    By Neuroskeptic | December 8, 2017

    The Remarkable "Curvature Blindness" Illusion - Neuroskeptic

    Ramifying comment to the latter:

    Orlin Pettit > Jan-Erik Vinje • 18 days ago: "I remember seeing a photograph of a street scene several weeks ago from near the equator where twice a year the Sun is directly overhead at noon.. and it's looks very peculiar. Estimating distance and the actual size of objects is not easy as there are no shadows."

    [edited] To me that experience bears out the phenomenological recognition that whatever appears to living animals appears by virtue of the light and shadow within which they/we are able to discern things and gestalts in the world, and the continual changing of the available light in which the world appears is the veritable sense of the temporality within which we and the world exist. The mobility of animals is the means by which the embodied senses of the environing world's 'depth' first arise prereflectively -- in moving, and observing motion, within three spatial dimensions and the dimension of time as temporality. Thus what we can think [mind] is constructed out of that which we experience in prereflective consciousness of being-in-the-world. I'm interested in any responses to this paragraph.
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2018
  18. Soupie

    Soupie Paranormal Adept

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    I'm not sure I understand your question re the origin of the attraction to symmetry. A just so story might be that perceived symmetries are probably related/synonymous to adaptive patterns in the environment, thus organisms are attracted to them.

    As to your last paragraph: I think as we've been discussing—especially at the end of the last thread—that cognition is indeed grounded in perception. It seems that that there is a growing, mainstream consensus on this as well.
     
  19. Pharoah

    Pharoah Paranormal Adept

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    @Constance
    I have looked in my records and found out that the book I read was "Quantum Gods" by Victor Stenger... so not the same author...
     
  20. Constance

    Constance Paranormal Adept

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    Thanks @Pharoah. While you're here would you look over my post #17 above and my unclearly posed question to @Soupie following it and give us your thoughts on this question of symmetry in nature and how it affects our, and likely other species', behavior? I was about to do a search on Mario Livio's speculations, cited in the LiveScience article I cited in post 17 and will follow through with that tonight.
     
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