I've had enough of talking to you about this. You're a charlatan. You've started up the same issues again. Poke me about 'explanatory gaps' will you.
Yes, I will, because you clearly don't understand the concept. How is the nature of an experience ever *reducible to a physical phenomenon? This must be explained first before any aspect of experience can be reduced in this way, and yet it is fundamentally impossible to explain it. Let me rephrase: due to the nature of the problem, there is no way to explain how experience can be mapped to brain activity. The reason for this should be obvious: there is a difference in kind between an experience and a physical object; the very nature of consciousness is other than that of physical stuff. It's all well and good to say "oh, we'll be able to work it out in the future", but that's even worse than my position, that we already worked it out in the past! How is this so obscure to you? Also, why are you suddenly taking things personally again?
To say that 'thought can't be reduced to an organ or part of an organ' simply makes you sound like a halfwit.
Well then, the majority of contemporary philosophers of mind are halfwits. I'd better tell them that they're wrong!
When you start acknowledging the huge gaps in the dualist theory I have been rasising for weeks rather than focusing in on just gaps in the physicalist theory, maybe you will no longer be a charlatan.
I'm not a dualist. As I have explained, I am a monist, of the most rigorous sort: in reality, there is one thing, and one thing only, that is infinite and constant. This is clearly yet another point in which we've been talking past each other.
1. The direct correlation between physical brains and consciousnes (why can't thought and concsiousness exist without physical brains (or processes that mimick the connections between neurons), why does it vanish with sufficient damage to physical brains, why can't you 'tune in' and pick up my consciousness if you think consciousness is just like a signal or software). You have never given me the courtnesy of acknowleding any of this in any sort of mature fashion. You just tell me 'they are correlated'
Thought and consciousness certainly exist before brains; brains of the human sort are advanced enough to manifest such non-physical phenomena in physicality. Even "brain" exists before any one instance of brain has appeared. If you remove the brain, you remove the mechanism of manifestation; consciousness, though, is eternal (and non-specific/non-specified).
Do you hold "exist" to mean "is corporeal", or "has reality"? The former is restrictive to anything other than the physicalist paradigm, as you can surely tell. Nobody could comprehend the metaphysical if they truly believed that only the physical is real.
2. the mechanisms by which non physical entities might somehow interact with physical entities.
"The physical is informed by the metaphysical". If you cannot understand what this means, simply accept that your knowledge is not apt to the task at hand, and wait until you have accumulated enough to make sense of this simple statement. I'm not trying to be rude, here, but you seem to be glossing over huge amounts of what I've said, perhaps because you don't yet have the conceptual tools to understand it.
3. The most rational way of deciding between dualism vs physicalism is via a probabilistic route where the overall pool of evidence supporting each prospective hypothesis is weighed up. It is NOT via finding a few isolated holes in side 'x' and holding this up as a victory for side 'y', in the complete absense of any positive evidence for side 'y'.
As I have mentioned above, you're mistaken in considering me to be a dualist - surely this shows, yet again, your ignorance of Tradition, for no follower of Tradition can be a dualist of any sort. Only Monism is Real.
When the sciences have revealed that nearly everything we once wanted to explain has a 'mechanistic' cause, you hold fast to the other side. Sure, there are new mysteries that have popped up since (thanks to physical science revealing new questions). But you are a 'god of the gaps' person, akin to that brid of subterrenean spirit, the Ostrich, which proceeds to stick its head into the sand when it senses danger. I submit to you that this is not justified. When a methodology has been laying waste to questions left right and centre for 200 years, I argue that it is not intellectually credible to hold fast to the gaps it cannot explain, as if one missed note invalidated the whole symphony.
You can continue to levy accusations against my character, but the fact remains that, as (again) I have said before, my beliefs are based upon experience and reason, just as yours are. I'm certain that potentially all physical phenomena have a physical cause, and yet I am also certain that there are non-physical phenomena (such as experience itself). I am certain of this because I encounter such things daily - as does any conscious entity - and I can recognise them as such, where others seemingly attempt to fool themselves into thinking that they (both the phenomena and themselves!) don't exist.
"Despite this celebrity the body of established fact about Gage and what he was like (whether before or after his accident) is remarkably small, which has allowed "the fitting of almost any theory to the small number of facts we have"—Gage having been cited, over the years, by proponents of various theories of the brain wholly contradictory to one another. A survey of published accounts of Gage, including scientific ones, has found that they are almost always severely distorted—exaggerating the known facts when not directly contradicting them." (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phineas_Gage)
@Transcix: "thinking for yourself", and attaching those legs to that flat surface, you have created what is known in English as a "chair". I suppose that you've reasoned that your own form is comfortable when bent at the knees, and you've surmised that a good way of achieving this is to provide some base upon which to rest your backside, that your upper body might be supported while your knees are bent. Subsequently, you have combined a number of objects in such a way as to provide that raised base, thus imbuing those collected objects with "chairness". This is how we call it in English; it is called by any number of other names, but its essence remains the same, across time, across cultures. The wheel has been "invented" many times.
Bill's partially correct in suggesting that, being indistinguishable from any other form (as all forms are part of the One), we have a fundamental connection to all forms; as such, it could be said that we never "invent" things, but "remember" them. The chair already exists, before we "create" it (I could bring Parmenides in here to provide logical proof of this and similar statements, if necessary).