Re: ality

From: Ray Recchia (
Date: Fri Feb 22 2002 - 02:44:51 GMT

  • Next message: Ray Recchia: "Re: ality (cont'd)"

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    Subject: Re: ality
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    At 04:34 PM 2/21/2002 -0800, you wrote:
    > > >As I've stated, memory involves reconstruction for the very simple reason
    > > >that the past has no spatial or material existence. We have to recreate
    > > >the appearance of recollected events. We go "back in time" in our
    > > >minds, not our bodies. If, on the other hand, memories are stored in the
    > > >brain, our recall should be as precise and accurate as a computer
    > > >retrieving data. That our memories are reconstructed is a problem for
    > > >the mechanistic view, not mine.
    > >
    > > This is the kind of oversimplified assertion that you constantly make.
    >Another pointless insult. And you accuse me of speaking from emotions?
    > > Of course there are possible explanations for mistakes in memory. If
    > > memories are stored as changes in threshold levels of neural receptors
    > > they could be subject to modification due to a large variety of sources.
    > > The simple fact that the molecules in cell membranes get replaced over a
    > > period of time could cause easily cause this. The fact that memory would
    > > be operating near the quantum level means that is likely to have an
    > > inherent error factor similar to the way that errors in DNA replication
    > > occur.
    >It's far worse than you realize. Neuronal connections are in constant flux.
    >The brain is incapable of statically storing data. Yes, this would indeed
    >explain why the brain can't seem to get our memories straight. But if it's
    >utterly unlike a computer, why continue assuming it stores data?
    >If the brain is built to store data, it ought to do it well. After all, we
    >humans took only a few decades to build a device that does it extremely
    >well. When you start coming up with reasons why it wouldn't do a very good
    >job of it, you're undermining your position. You're making my argument for
    >me. Of course the brain would do a lousy job of storing
    >information. That's not what it's built for.

    Once again the same problem. An oversimplified assertion that to does
    nothing to prove your point. 'If the brain is built to store data it ought
    to do it well.' It does do it well. It does it well enough to assist in
    survival of the organism. It does it well enough to store a lifetime of
    experiences. By your logic hearts would not actually pump blood because
    people have heart attacks. Skin wouldn't protect the body because people
    get cuts. Evolution doesn't require perfection. It requires well enough to
    get reproduced. Period.

    > > I don't think I misstated your hypothesis here. You go back in time in
    > > your mind. So how do people make mistakes? However you feel like
    > > phrasing it just answer the question. Where do the mistakes come
    > > from?
    >Already answered. Consult the top of the post.

    No you haven't answered anything. How does this recreation result in
    imperfection? How does the imperfection come about? That's the
    question. Fill in the blank on this sentence, "The brain as storage site
    hypothesis is flawed because it is not consistent with an imperfect
    memory. My alternate hypothesis explains that the imperfections in memory
    are caused by...."

    If you can't fill in the blank with something then your criticism does
    nothing to show anyone should accept your hypothesis as the better alternative.

    > > >Memory is the recollection of the past. That's what it has always meant.
    > > >To remember something is to bring the past back, not materially but
    > > >mentally. When you have to look up information on a past event, then
    > > >clearly you're not remembering it. This applies whether you look it up
    > > >in a book or your brain. Either way, it's data, not memory.
    > >
    > > Once again this is your definition. You have no difference here other
    > > than your reliance on the mind looking up memories in time.
    >This is a bizarre reformulation of the traditional, *universal* definition
    >of memory. The mind doesn't look up memories in a static, data storage
    >system called "time." To remember is to restore the past into present
    >consciousness. There's no informational intermediary.
    You don't have a 'traditional' definition. You have mental time
    travel. And you don't have any mechanism that you can connect to the
    brain. You simply have no explanation for how neurons do this.

    > > It's circular logic. Since memories are caused by the mind looking
    > > backward in time they are not the same as data. Since the mind has
    > > mind has memories it must be able to look backward in time.
    >If the mind has memories, then it re-presents past experiences. According
    >to the mechanistic theory, the mind has no genuine memories, only data,
    >which are carelessly referred to as "memories." It's an Orwellian shift
    >in language, preventing even the possibility of understanding since the
    >word we traditionally used for it has been redefined into something else.

    The way traditional science works is that we observe the world and come
    with up definitions that match what is being observed. Not the other way

    > > >It's a question of logic. The brain is a physical object. The mind and
    > > >its properties are self-evidently not physical. Yet, just as clearly,
    > there
    > > >is no mind without a brain. Thus the brain facilitates the mind without
    > > >containing it.
    > >
    > > You've just restated your original hypothesis and inferred that since the
    > > mind exists there must be a connection. Just explain how the actual
    > > neurons do it. If they facilitate it then how?
    >No one knows how the brain facilitates mental existence. However, we can
    >easily demonstrate, a priori, that it does so.

    The bottom line is then that you are criticizing existing theory because of
    alleged flaws in mechanism and then claiming that you don't need to show a
    mechanism at all because your 'traditional definition' is proof enough.

    Ray Recchia

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