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Living creatures (creatures of life) are divided into two groups

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Living creatures (creatures of life) are divided into two groups:

1) Rational humans that think objectively.
2) Irrational animals.

(And creatures of death are too.)
 

steve_bank

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Is there a point to the OP?

Rational and conjecture humans can create irrational threads, do you agree?

If you woild, define rational and objective in context of your OP.
 

Keith&Co.

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If you woild, define rational and objective in context of your OP.
and 'irrational,' please.
I mean, a life form may not think its behavior through, but if everything it does serves a rational purpose (survival, mating, protecting offspring), then wouldn't it be rational?
Only one species dates outside its pool of approved partners for the purpose of disappointing its patriarch, for example.
 

steve_bank

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If you woild, define rational and objective in context of your OP.
and 'irrational,' please.
I mean, a life form may not think its behavior through, but if everything it does serves a rational purpose (survival, mating, protecting offspring), then wouldn't it be rational?
Only one species dates outside its pool of approved partners for the purpose of disappointing its patriarch, for example.
Interesting idea about thought.
 

steve_bank

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Maybe other critters dnb't date to piss off parents, but...

I watched a nature show about gorillas. A male and female would leave the group in different directions, meet outside the sight of the alpha male, fool around, and return from different directions.
 

jab

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Living creatures (creatures of life) are divided into two groups:

1) Rational humans that think objectively.
2) Irrational animals.

(And creatures of death are too.)
Agentless passive verb: "are divided". What is doing the dividing?
 

Politesse

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No human thinks "objectively"... from an objective point of view. We can only approximate such a model of the world through rigorous intersubjective testing of specific ideas, and no one operates in that frame of mind as a natural state, let alone all the time or with respect to all matters.
 

Marvin Edwards

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Living creatures (creatures of life) are divided into two groups:

1) Rational humans that think objectively.
2) Irrational animals.

...

I think there is a category error there.

An intelligent species has the capacity to imagine, evaluate, and choose. This would certainly include most animals, such as squirrels and crows. Non-intelligent species operate instinctively, their behavior is "hard-wired". This would (I imagine) cover all plant-life, and probably most insects, and certainly all bacterium.

Since "irrational" usually implies faulty logic and/or a faulty brain (a human condition), the distinction I think you're referring to would be between rational (intelligent) and non-rational animals (non-intelligent).
 

Marvin Edwards

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No human thinks "objectively"... from an objective point of view. We can only approximate such a model of the world through rigorous intersubjective testing of specific ideas, and no one operates in that frame of mind as a natural state, let alone all the time or with respect to all matters.

Generally agree, but since the words "objective" and "subjective" are products of our own subjective minds, their meaning must be interpreted according to how they are actually used by us for our common purposes. The "intersubjective testing" you mentioned is a good example. But there is also a similar intersubjective testing performed by a single individual, in that they can test an object by multiple senses.

For example, I walk up to what appears to be a bowl of fruit. I pick up an apple, and notice right away that it is lighter than expected. I rap it with my knuckles and it sounds hollow. It is clearly a fake apple used for decoration rather than eating.
 

Cheerful Charlie

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Man is rational, but animals are not is an error we have inherited from Aristotle. See Aristotle's De Anima. Part of Aristotle's foolish hylomorphism metaphysical nonsense. Substance - form.

Aristotle tells us that the substance of man has the form of rationality. Intelligence. He claims this form is eternal and imortal and survives the death of a body, that is substance.

This piece of sophisticated stupidity is still in mutant forms current among Catholic theologian Aristotle, Aquinas fanbois. It long was the basis for cretinist claims animals were mere automatons, that did not suffer or feel pin. That has been an excuse for centuries on cruelty to animals.
 

rousseau

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No human thinks "objectively"... from an objective point of view. We can only approximate such a model of the world through rigorous intersubjective testing of specific ideas, and no one operates in that frame of mind as a natural state, let alone all the time or with respect to all matters.

I also tend to think we (and especially atheists) overstate the importance of thought, and understate the importance of instinct and intuition. Instinct is like an ever present machine that works so flawlessly most of us barely notice it's there.

In that way a sizable amount of mammalian life is likely more similar than different. But it's nice to believe that we're special.
 

Politesse

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I also tend to think we (and especially atheists) overstate the importance of thought, and understate the importance of instinct and intuition. Instinct is like an ever present machine that works so flawlessly most of us barely notice it's there.
Yes. Quite often masquerading as "rational thought" or "common sense", at least to the unwary.

I'm often fascinated by the categorizations and evaluations the mind seems to supply instantly, despite most people imagining their thoughts on their subjects to be rational and well considered. "That is a country music station" or "that person over there is homeless" or "that is classified as a skyscraper not an apartment". We make these determinations seemingly instantaneously, faster than we can consciously process the thought passing through our mind, and act on the assumption we formed until or unless that assumption is challenged. Yet we like to imagine that our thoughts on art, economics, and architecture are well-considered and rational, not emotional or reactive.
 

rousseau

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I also tend to think we (and especially atheists) overstate the importance of thought, and understate the importance of instinct and intuition. Instinct is like an ever present machine that works so flawlessly most of us barely notice it's there.
Yes. Quite often masquerading as "rational thought" or "common sense", at least to the unwary.

I'm often fascinated by the categorizations and evaluations the mind seems to supply instantly, despite most people imagining their thoughts on their subjects to be rational and well considered. "That is a country music station" or "that person over there is homeless" or "that is classified as a skyscraper not an apartment". We make these determinations seemingly instantaneously, faster than we can consciously process the thought passing through our mind, and act on the assumption we formed until or unless that assumption is challenged. Yet we like to imagine that our thoughts on art, economics, and architecture are well-considered and rational, not emotional or reactive.

Somewhat related, but I've been thinking lately about where people could derive their knowledge and models beyond the culture they live in. Then you recognize that essentially none of us read, and even fewer read anything approaching esoteric. Which basically makes most of us microcosms of the culture we live in, and friends we keep.

So most of our objective, rational thought is just socially accepted, common knowledge among our social group.
 

Politesse

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I also tend to think we (and especially atheists) overstate the importance of thought, and understate the importance of instinct and intuition. Instinct is like an ever present machine that works so flawlessly most of us barely notice it's there.
Yes. Quite often masquerading as "rational thought" or "common sense", at least to the unwary.

I'm often fascinated by the categorizations and evaluations the mind seems to supply instantly, despite most people imagining their thoughts on their subjects to be rational and well considered. "That is a country music station" or "that person over there is homeless" or "that is classified as a skyscraper not an apartment". We make these determinations seemingly instantaneously, faster than we can consciously process the thought passing through our mind, and act on the assumption we formed until or unless that assumption is challenged. Yet we like to imagine that our thoughts on art, economics, and architecture are well-considered and rational, not emotional or reactive.

Somewhat related, but I've been thinking lately about where people could derive their knowledge and models beyond the culture they live in. Then you recognize that essentially none of us read, and even fewer read anything approaching esoteric. Which basically makes most of us microcosms of the culture we live in, and friends we keep.

So most of our objective, rational thought is just socially accepted, common knowledge among our social group.
To some degree. Most people participate in multiple social and cultural networks, though. And culture formation itself is not exactly a random process, it does seem to select for beneficial ideas and knowledge more often than not, distressing though the seeming errors in that process can be. It can be interesting to watch how ideas matriculate through the system.
 

rousseau

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I also tend to think we (and especially atheists) overstate the importance of thought, and understate the importance of instinct and intuition. Instinct is like an ever present machine that works so flawlessly most of us barely notice it's there.
Yes. Quite often masquerading as "rational thought" or "common sense", at least to the unwary.

I'm often fascinated by the categorizations and evaluations the mind seems to supply instantly, despite most people imagining their thoughts on their subjects to be rational and well considered. "That is a country music station" or "that person over there is homeless" or "that is classified as a skyscraper not an apartment". We make these determinations seemingly instantaneously, faster than we can consciously process the thought passing through our mind, and act on the assumption we formed until or unless that assumption is challenged. Yet we like to imagine that our thoughts on art, economics, and architecture are well-considered and rational, not emotional or reactive.

Somewhat related, but I've been thinking lately about where people could derive their knowledge and models beyond the culture they live in. Then you recognize that essentially none of us read, and even fewer read anything approaching esoteric. Which basically makes most of us microcosms of the culture we live in, and friends we keep.

So most of our objective, rational thought is just socially accepted, common knowledge among our social group.
To some degree. Most people participate in multiple social and cultural networks, though. And culture formation itself is not exactly a random process, it does seem to select for beneficial ideas and knowledge more often than not, distressing though the seeming errors in that process can be. It can be interesting to watch how ideas matriculate through the system.

Yea I think about that a lot too, most of our cultural knowledge generally is beneficial to hold and follow. But I do find it interesting that most of us accept this knowledge with essentially no after-thought. [x] is good, [y] is bad .. that person did [x] to me which is good. This other person did [y] to me which is bad, so I don't like them anymore. It's almost as though agency often lies on the cultural side of things.
 

Politesse

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I also tend to think we (and especially atheists) overstate the importance of thought, and understate the importance of instinct and intuition. Instinct is like an ever present machine that works so flawlessly most of us barely notice it's there.
Yes. Quite often masquerading as "rational thought" or "common sense", at least to the unwary.

I'm often fascinated by the categorizations and evaluations the mind seems to supply instantly, despite most people imagining their thoughts on their subjects to be rational and well considered. "That is a country music station" or "that person over there is homeless" or "that is classified as a skyscraper not an apartment". We make these determinations seemingly instantaneously, faster than we can consciously process the thought passing through our mind, and act on the assumption we formed until or unless that assumption is challenged. Yet we like to imagine that our thoughts on art, economics, and architecture are well-considered and rational, not emotional or reactive.

Somewhat related, but I've been thinking lately about where people could derive their knowledge and models beyond the culture they live in. Then you recognize that essentially none of us read, and even fewer read anything approaching esoteric. Which basically makes most of us microcosms of the culture we live in, and friends we keep.

So most of our objective, rational thought is just socially accepted, common knowledge among our social group.
To some degree. Most people participate in multiple social and cultural networks, though. And culture formation itself is not exactly a random process, it does seem to select for beneficial ideas and knowledge more often than not, distressing though the seeming errors in that process can be. It can be interesting to watch how ideas matriculate through the system.

Yea I think about that a lot too, most of our cultural knowledge generally is beneficial to hold and follow. But I do find it interesting that most of us accept this knowledge with essentially no after-thought. [x] is good, [y] is bad .. that person did [x] to me which is good. This other person did [y] to me which is bad, so I don't like them anymore. It's almost as though agency often lies on the cultural side of things.
It does. But, what is culture? That's the million dollar question. Plenty of my colleagues in anthropology these days would answer "a myth", or more likely something like "a proposed emergent property of several interconnected but incoherent social and biological processes".
 

Marvin Edwards

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But, what is culture? That's the million dollar question. Plenty of my colleagues in anthropology these days would answer "a myth", or more likely something like "a proposed emergent property of several interconnected but incoherent social and biological processes".

Culture is the habits of the community.
 

rousseau

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I also tend to think we (and especially atheists) overstate the importance of thought, and understate the importance of instinct and intuition. Instinct is like an ever present machine that works so flawlessly most of us barely notice it's there.
Yes. Quite often masquerading as "rational thought" or "common sense", at least to the unwary.

I'm often fascinated by the categorizations and evaluations the mind seems to supply instantly, despite most people imagining their thoughts on their subjects to be rational and well considered. "That is a country music station" or "that person over there is homeless" or "that is classified as a skyscraper not an apartment". We make these determinations seemingly instantaneously, faster than we can consciously process the thought passing through our mind, and act on the assumption we formed until or unless that assumption is challenged. Yet we like to imagine that our thoughts on art, economics, and architecture are well-considered and rational, not emotional or reactive.

Somewhat related, but I've been thinking lately about where people could derive their knowledge and models beyond the culture they live in. Then you recognize that essentially none of us read, and even fewer read anything approaching esoteric. Which basically makes most of us microcosms of the culture we live in, and friends we keep.

So most of our objective, rational thought is just socially accepted, common knowledge among our social group.
To some degree. Most people participate in multiple social and cultural networks, though. And culture formation itself is not exactly a random process, it does seem to select for beneficial ideas and knowledge more often than not, distressing though the seeming errors in that process can be. It can be interesting to watch how ideas matriculate through the system.

Yea I think about that a lot too, most of our cultural knowledge generally is beneficial to hold and follow. But I do find it interesting that most of us accept this knowledge with essentially no after-thought. [x] is good, [y] is bad .. that person did [x] to me which is good. This other person did [y] to me which is bad, so I don't like them anymore. It's almost as though agency often lies on the cultural side of things.
It does. But, what is culture? That's the million dollar question. Plenty of my colleagues in anthropology these days would answer "a myth", or more likely something like "a proposed emergent property of several interconnected but incoherent social and biological processes".

Perhaps it's just short-hand for the broader environment one lives in. To actually define the cultures one is affected by, one has to qualify the various environments one is exposed to.

A bacterial culture exists in a petri-dish, a human culture exists in a space with permeable, transient boundaries?
 

Swammerdami

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Is there a continuum from unintelligent creatures to intelligent ones? Octopuses have great intelligence and imagination. And what about an ant colony? Individual ants are quite stupid, but by interaction they form a "macro-organism" which exhibits remarkable "intelligence."

The main thing separating humans from "lower animals" is language. Is complex language a key to consciousness and advanced thought?

When we "think", do language centers in our brain emit words or sentences? For some people, yes; for others, no. I think. I often "think in words" but feel that that slows and weakens my thinking. My occasional flashes of creative insight arrive WITHOUT words.

Here are some other useful posts that I agree with:
Living creatures (creatures of life) are divided into two groups:

1) Rational humans that think objectively.
2) Irrational animals.

...

I think there is a category error there.

An intelligent species has the capacity to imagine, evaluate, and choose. This would certainly include most animals, such as squirrels and crows. Non-intelligent species operate instinctively, their behavior is "hard-wired". This would (I imagine) cover all plant-life, and probably most insects, and certainly all bacterium.

Since "irrational" usually implies faulty logic and/or a faulty brain (a human condition), the distinction I think you're referring to would be between rational (intelligent) and non-rational animals (non-intelligent).

Man is rational, but animals are not is an error we have inherited from Aristotle. See Aristotle's De Anima. Part of Aristotle's foolish hylomorphism metaphysical nonsense. Substance - form.

Aristotle tells us that the substance of man has the form of rationality. Intelligence. He claims this form is eternal and imortal and survives the death of a body, that is substance.

This piece of sophisticated stupidity is still in mutant forms current among Catholic theologian Aristotle, Aquinas fanbois. It long was the basis for cretinist claims animals were mere automatons, that did not suffer or feel pin. That has been an excuse for centuries on cruelty to animals.

Historical note: It is said, with controversy, that Epicurus about a century after Aristotle cliamed that animals have free will. Two centuries later, the Roman natural philosopher Titus LUCRETIUS Carus, "challenged the assumption that humans are necessarily superior to animals, noting that mothers in the wild recognize and nurture their babies as do human moms."

I also tend to think we (and especially atheists) overstate the importance of thought, and understate the importance of instinct and intuition. Instinct is like an ever present machine that works so flawlessly most of us barely notice it's there.
Yes. Quite often masquerading as "rational thought" or "common sense", at least to the unwary.

I'm often fascinated by the categorizations and evaluations the mind seems to supply instantly, despite most people imagining their thoughts on their subjects to be rational and well considered. "That is a country music station" or "that person over there is homeless" or "that is classified as a skyscraper not an apartment". We make these determinations seemingly instantaneously, faster than we can consciously process the thought passing through our mind, and act on the assumption we formed until or unless that assumption is challenged. Yet we like to imagine that our thoughts on art, economics, and architecture are well-considered and rational, not emotional or reactive.

Somewhat related, but I've been thinking lately about where people could derive their knowledge and models beyond the culture they live in. Then you recognize that essentially none of us read, and even fewer read anything approaching esoteric. Which basically makes most of us microcosms of the culture we live in, and friends we keep.

So most of our objective, rational thought is just socially accepted, common knowledge among our social group.
 

rousseau

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Is there a continuum from unintelligent creatures to intelligent ones? Octopuses have great intelligence and imagination. And what about an ant colony? Individual ants are quite stupid, but by interaction they form a "macro-organism" which exhibits remarkable "intelligence."

The main thing separating humans from "lower animals" is language. Is complex language a key to consciousness and advanced thought?

When we "think", do language centers in our brain emit words or sentences? For some people, yes; for others, no. I think. I often "think in words" but feel that that slows and weakens my thinking. My occasional flashes of creative insight arrive WITHOUT words.

Here are some other useful posts that I agree with:
Living creatures (creatures of life) are divided into two groups:

1) Rational humans that think objectively.
2) Irrational animals.

...

I think there is a category error there.

An intelligent species has the capacity to imagine, evaluate, and choose. This would certainly include most animals, such as squirrels and crows. Non-intelligent species operate instinctively, their behavior is "hard-wired". This would (I imagine) cover all plant-life, and probably most insects, and certainly all bacterium.

Since "irrational" usually implies faulty logic and/or a faulty brain (a human condition), the distinction I think you're referring to would be between rational (intelligent) and non-rational animals (non-intelligent).

Man is rational, but animals are not is an error we have inherited from Aristotle. See Aristotle's De Anima. Part of Aristotle's foolish hylomorphism metaphysical nonsense. Substance - form.

Aristotle tells us that the substance of man has the form of rationality. Intelligence. He claims this form is eternal and imortal and survives the death of a body, that is substance.

This piece of sophisticated stupidity is still in mutant forms current among Catholic theologian Aristotle, Aquinas fanbois. It long was the basis for cretinist claims animals were mere automatons, that did not suffer or feel pin. That has been an excuse for centuries on cruelty to animals.

Historical note: It is said, with controversy, that Epicurus about a century after Aristotle cliamed that animals have free will. Two centuries later, the Roman natural philosopher Titus LUCRETIUS Carus, "challenged the assumption that humans are necessarily superior to animals, noting that mothers in the wild recognize and nurture their babies as do human moms."

I also tend to think we (and especially atheists) overstate the importance of thought, and understate the importance of instinct and intuition. Instinct is like an ever present machine that works so flawlessly most of us barely notice it's there.
Yes. Quite often masquerading as "rational thought" or "common sense", at least to the unwary.

I'm often fascinated by the categorizations and evaluations the mind seems to supply instantly, despite most people imagining their thoughts on their subjects to be rational and well considered. "That is a country music station" or "that person over there is homeless" or "that is classified as a skyscraper not an apartment". We make these determinations seemingly instantaneously, faster than we can consciously process the thought passing through our mind, and act on the assumption we formed until or unless that assumption is challenged. Yet we like to imagine that our thoughts on art, economics, and architecture are well-considered and rational, not emotional or reactive.

Somewhat related, but I've been thinking lately about where people could derive their knowledge and models beyond the culture they live in. Then you recognize that essentially none of us read, and even fewer read anything approaching esoteric. Which basically makes most of us microcosms of the culture we live in, and friends we keep.

So most of our objective, rational thought is just socially accepted, common knowledge among our social group.

My thought would be that complex language has less to with consciousness, more to do nuanced communication. A particularly wise person with a lot of useful knowledge to impart can fundamentally change the rest of someone's life with a small, vocal utterance. That is a huge return on energy expenditure.

That would be why there is some level of premium on intelligence, to a point. People need to be smart enough to at least socialize their kids appropriately. With a likely connection to why women select their partners based on linguistic skill. A man that can't impress a woman with language is unlikely to be a good father.

If you break it down, I would think that many animals communicate with language of their own kind, but that language is less complex. For us, language and the quality of our brains are literally the selective factor (at least for men).
 

Swammerdami

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Humans have large operational differences between left and right cerebral hemispheres, especially in the "language centers." Is this the case in other primates?

The main thing separating humans from "lower animals" is language. Is complex language a key to consciousness and advanced thought?

I don't know why I wrote this in such a crude and misleading way. I am a Julian Jaynes disciple and interpret his teachings to mean, in the briefest summary:
  • The development of language was a big change in cognition. I think Jaynes regards the use of personal names as a major breakthrough, but I'm far from sure of this: The language of other primates may be very primitive but I'll guess they DO use personal names for friends and relatives.
  • Language led to a "bicameral brain" in which the separate hemispheres had separate functions. Schizophrenia and auditory hallucinations are two of several modes Jaynes relates to brain bicamerality. Has schizophrenia been observed in other primates?
  • Humans remembered (and hallucinated) their parents' words even after their parents were dead, a modality which led to ancestor worship, along with obedience to kings and ancestral kings (gods).
  • As Neolithic and Bronze Age societies advanced, limitations to bicameral ("schizophrenic"!???) cognition led to failures. Unexplained society collapses in history (Mayans? Hittite Empire? too-easy surrendering to Cortez and Pizarro?) might be explained by bicameral cognition being unable to cope, having difficulty in creating original thought.
  • Better cognition, what Jaynes calls "subjective consciousness," began to appear (often early in the Iron Age). Famously Homer's The Odyssey describes its hero Odysseus as the first man who could think for himself.
  • As subjective consciousness (gradually?) replaced the "bicameral brain," vestiges of bicamerality remained, e.g. in the Oracles at Delphi. I think "demon possessions," e.g. as described for 1st century Judaea, inhabited bicameral brains.

I think this Jaynes model can be melded — albeit with difficulty — alongside other models. Rousseau?
 

rousseau

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It sounds like you know more than me, but none of what you wrote surprises me. Language would be a major component of our particular brand of consciousness - allowing us to thrive in our own cultures. Maybe not a key to consciousness, so to speak, but a key to advanced thought.

I wouldn't take that to mean that a bird, bear, or dog isn't conscious, but rather complex language isn't a component of their own brand of cognition. They still see, smell, feel, hear, and even communicate - but the overall experience would be different.

Can you imagine human consciousness without language? It wouldn't be all that interesting or particularly special, but you can still imagine existing without words.

But then, I'm not an expert on this topic, so I could just be talking nonsense.
 

Swammerdami

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One can take a slightly bolder view of Jaynes' hypothesis. Language was necessary for NEITHER "animal-like" cognition NOR for subjective consciousness. (Though language facilitated learning and culture which led to better adapted cognition when humans "became conscious.")

The bicameral brain can be thought of as a sort of detour: It led to an early type of religion which hastened the rise of early Neolithic towns, but cognition wasn't creative enough to find good solutions as city-states grew in size and complexity and conflicted with neighboring towns. Such towns succeeded when leaders' subjective consciousness implied creative thought.
 

rousseau

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Interesting reading. It sounds like we're back in Ancient Greece with our level of scientific understanding of consciousness - theory but not necessarily proof.

I likely shouldn't comment too much because I haven't done much reading on the topic. I typically take an empirical approach in observing my own experience to understand how my mind functions, but I don't worry too much about how I define that experience. I can say with confidence that my mind / sensory / nervous system does certain things, and that's good enough for me.
 

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One can take a slightly bolder view of Jaynes' hypothesis. Language was necessary for NEITHER "animal-like" cognition NOR for subjective consciousness. (Though language facilitated learning and culture which led to better adapted cognition when humans "became conscious.")

The bicameral brain can be thought of as a sort of detour: It led to an early type of religion which hastened the rise of early Neolithic towns, but cognition wasn't creative enough to find good solutions as city-states grew in size and complexity and conflicted with neighboring towns. Such towns succeeded when leaders' subjective consciousness implied creative thought.
So Swammerdami, you accept that neural nodes communicate largely along parallelized surfaces which transmit images which represent other things yes?

Because that's a neural language, a language of images and shapes and patterns.

I would say that language is at the very heart of all cognition.

The bigger question is, how mutable is the language, and in what timescales and periods is the mutability applicable?

The natural genetic language is mutable on the scale of protein changes, mostly at gestation time. The natural neural language is mutable with respect to connection weights, largely in "nurture time", capable of modifying pattern intersections at "observation time", and capable of binding sound patterns to mouth movements to natural neural languages at education time.

It's languages implemented by systems of languages, language all the way down.

The real question is "what is the language being spoken, does it say everything it needs to be able to say at that level, can we speak to the things that speak in this language, and are we really even interested in what is being said?"

There is a conversation in the bacteria between the cilia motor's orientation and motivation, and the receptor that speaks a verb to it mediated by a chemical. If we interject ourselves in the conversation, we can hear what it says before the cilia does, translate it into a language more easily understood, and then perhaps throw away the message and even send one of our own.

The issue is whether or not the language can be translated across some barrier, such as the barrier of the gap between your neurons and mine. We do this by... Creating yet another language, one of wiggles in molecules rather than presence or absence of specific molecules, one which may mutate more freely.
 

Elixir

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English is complicated
I would say that language is at the very heart of all cognition.

Interesting thread. I would agree withe the above, with the caveat that we have no idea what actually constitutes language.
In another thread Jarhyn, you elicited some scorn for asserting that a rock has "agency". I agreed with you then, and now I will recall that assertion to assert that rock's agency constitutes "language" in (one of) its most rudimentary forms. If you grant that then yes; language is at the heart of all cognition.
 
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