When Life Became Sentient
August 31, 2018 at 9:41 pm #11222
– this supports Frans de Waal’s “co-emergence” hypothesis, where self-awareness and passing the mirror test coincide with having Theory of Mind (understanding of the goals, perceptions, emotions etc. of another being). The cleaner fish has to be able to understand the minds of other larger fish, presumably, to know whether or not it will be eaten when it picks their teeth or skin.August 31, 2018 at 10:20 pm #11223
Reg the Fronkey FarmerModerator
There was a girl in the gym tonight who took a selfie every few minutes….not sure how sentient she was but she probably thinks she passes the mirror test. She “ran” 900 meters in 17 minutes.August 31, 2018 at 11:18 pm #11224
Should be able to hop backwards while juggling in that time…September 1, 2018 at 3:04 am #11226
Consciousness arises in animals as a feedback loop from the brain to somatic sensations and back again. It is a survival advantage to have greater awareness.
But there is a conflict between instinct and reason as drivers of consciousness. Reason emerges where instinct is insufficient or gives survival benefits.
We don’t credit organisms or animals driven exclusively by instinct as sentient but are we certain that they are not self-aware? If so, how?September 1, 2018 at 9:28 am #11228
” which one is my Cheese sandwich? ” T.E.D talk on theory of Mind.September 1, 2018 at 10:01 am #11229
We don’t credit organisms or animals driven exclusively by instinct as sentient but are we certain that they are not self-aware? If so, how?
Hofstadter was one of the first mathematician/theory of mind/philosopher to posit feedback loops. In his book, only humans have strange loops (putting it extremely generally…where only by going up levels you can still come back to a level below from where you started). He discusses it in his Godel Escher Bach and elaborates on it in “I am a Strange Loop”. The first book is a magnum opus, takes months to finish and is utterly full of digressions. I’m a Strange loop is more concise and accessible.September 1, 2018 at 8:43 pm #11230
Frankly the homo sapiens adaptation of surpassing other creatures in cognitive ability may just prove to be an evolutionary dead end. Crocodilians have managed for over 80 Million years just fine, yet here we are, a very young species killing the planet with our great brains.September 2, 2018 at 12:42 am #11231
The crocs had no tree of knowledge and didn’t kill the planet.
But homo sapiens didn’t really have a tree of knowledge.
Fake news, reported by enemies of the people!!! Sad.
Or, getting killed is the planet’s purpose and our not killing it is messing with its purpose.
Bartender, another beer.September 2, 2018 at 9:02 am #11233
Reason emerges where instinct is insufficient or gives survival benefits.
I think reason emerges where there is something to reason about: i.e. something to communicate about. Reason – making sense – is for talking to others about what is going on. So, cooperation and collaboration give rise to communication which gives rise to reason.September 2, 2018 at 11:09 am #11234
– Frans de Waal’s co-emergence hypothesis “predicts that mirror self-recognition and advanced expressions of empathy appear together in both ontogeny and phylogeny” (across individuals, and across species).
The cleaner fish displays targeted helping but presumably not empathic concern – both “advanced expressions of empathy”.September 2, 2018 at 2:41 pm #11238
Simon, reason’s exclusive province is communication?
There is no other survival advantage?September 2, 2018 at 3:30 pm #11239
reason’s exclusive province is communication?
I’m saying that reason is for the purpose of making sense to others. On the other hand, some creatures seem to reason (e.g. crows, solving various problems) without communicating it to others.
But I think that reason – common sense – for humans has a lot to do with communicating honest information.September 2, 2018 at 4:28 pm #11240
Reg the Fronkey FarmerModerator
Reason is the ability to be able to think critically about a subject. When properly done objective conclusions can be reached that are “reason-able” interpretations of reality.
One idiom I use is “What is common sense to one person is often special knowledge to another”.
This is because so many people tend to base much of what they “know” by taking it on faith or via hearsay. They have never learned how to think critically or have any sense of skepticism or never even got a basic education in logic so that they could develop reasoning skills.
(see the “reason” story in today’s Sunday school for an example of what it is not).September 2, 2018 at 5:02 pm #11242
Some time back Someone suggested this website on Critical Thinking, by Robert T. Carroll, Ph.D.
He’s put his book free online called becoming a critical thinker. Maybe you have read it already? If not the link is below
I found it really useful, its also got Q&A and quiz to test your knowledge.
Here is the linkSeptember 2, 2018 at 5:04 pm #11243
Simon: …reason … humans has a lot to do with communicating honest information.
But not dishonest information?
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