Sunday School October 20th 2019
October 20, 2019 at 12:16 pm #28968
In the U.S. the decline of Christianity continues at a rapid pace so if applicable please take part in this secular survey of non-religious Americans. It is time to be counted and time to counteract attempts to rollback housing protections of the non-religious or to deny them access to healthcare.
It takes a man with big bells to be an exorcist.
Insight into the Evangelical persecution complex.
LGBTQ activists shut down Britain’s only Chick-fil-A just 9 days after it opened.
Climate Crisis: Promises from the UN climate action summit.
On the Hard Problem of consciousness.
The BERT neural network has led to a revolution in how machines understand human language.
Would you be in favor of CRISPR babies if mutations preventing deafness could be overcome?
My theory on the falsifiability of an oxymoron has the potential to be proven wrong!
The beauty of Soviet anti-religious propaganda.
Long Read: Saving Aru: The epic battle to save the islands that inspired the theory of evolution.
This week I am reading this book: Six Impossible Things (in Quantum Mechanics).
Some photographs taken last week.
While you are waiting for the kettle to boil…..
October 20, 2019 at 12:24 pm #28970
- This topic was modified 1 month ago by Reg the Fronkey Farmer.
Have a great week everyone!!October 20, 2019 at 1:14 pm #28972
Barr and Trump make a scary combination.
Not sure how I feel about the whole CRISPR baby experiment.
Will watch TED Talk episode with second cup of coffee.
Thank you, Reg, for the Sunday morning reading. It’s raining and cold here this a.m. Nothing else to do but read and ponder.
October 20, 2019 at 1:15 pm #28974
- This reply was modified 1 month ago by Jody Lee.
except for the two women in outer space who remained calm when contacted by an alien.
I can cut President Rump some slack on this. I mean its not like it was the first time three women did a spacewalk. To move ahead we have to actually start not caring about gender at all.October 20, 2019 at 2:22 pm #28975
Thanks, Reg!October 20, 2019 at 3:15 pm #28976
Very true Robert and they explained that to him. I could not resist wording it like that.October 20, 2019 at 3:28 pm #28977
Thanks Jody. If you add Mike Pompeo into the mix with Trump and Barr then you got yourself the triumvirate that has Mike Pence in rapture.
Nothing else to do but read and ponder….
Lucky you 🙂October 20, 2019 at 3:28 pm #28978
Cheers Strega!October 20, 2019 at 4:18 pm #28985
That article on consciousness was interesting though, predictably, it ultimately didn’t solve the problem. There’s no way to prove that others are not “philosophical zombies” behaving in a humanlike way but totally lacking the inner life we call “consciousness.” At the end , he invokes a kind of spirit or soul…
From the article:
Currently, when I talk about this unique, particularly first-person domain, I use the language of the soul and spirit. (Click here for the educational philosopher and “metapsychologist” Zak Stein using similar terminology.) In using these terms, I don’t mean a supernatural sense of an entity that will leave my body after death. Rather, I use them to talk about our unique selves from the first-person point of view. In this language system, my soul is my unique lifeworld and everyday trials and triumphs, whereas my spirit refers more to transcendental ethical concerns and how I might connect my life quest to them. My point here is that the soul/spirit defined this way plays by a different set of rules than the language game of science. I believe the differences between the language games or domains of science/behavior and of soul/spirit and morality/ethics are crucial for us to keep in mind as we hunt for a more consilient scientific humanistic philosophy that can guide humanity in the 21st century.
October 20, 2019 at 7:45 pm #28988
- This reply was modified 1 month ago by Unseen.
No, it does not solve the problem (hmm..would I want it solved?). Whether we are “philosophical zombies” or even part of the “Borg”, we still have no real understanding of how the “self” of others work. Even “TOM” only goes as far as understanding basic emotions that help us to empathize but there are no fixed rules there. Even the succeeding article above on BERT raises the problem of how machines might eventually construct their own realities.
Like most (if not all) philosophical debates it is down to the words used to convey an explanation. Do the speaker and the audience agree on their meaning or are the words nuanced to lead to confusion?
This is the case with using words like “spirit” or “soul” in the first place. We are so used to using them (as a recent debate about their meaning showed) that it is actually difficult to use replacements for them. Even for those BERT reading machines, the term “Deus Ex” won the race in my head to be used and I don’t know what word was second.
I have no trouble when I argue through such debates in my own mind and it is not possible to have another vantage point, is it? I am reminded of a couple whose row in a hotel was overheard:
“I don’t know what it is that you don’t understand about what I am saying”.
Time for a single malt and some southern blues…..my favorite mix of spirit and soul….
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