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Evolution has not prepared us for this

coberst

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Evolution has not prepared us for this

Humans are animals with self-consciousness. This self-consciousness may show it self to some small degree in other animals but this capacity for self-consciousness makes our species different in kind from other animals and this difference makes all the difference in the world.

Natural evolution produced the human species but there is more than a degree of difference between humans and other animals; there is a difference in kind between us and our animal cousins.

All other animals are creatures of naïve action determined strictly by emotions, i.e. instinct that is obeyed by non reflective programmed action. Humans however are aided or hindered, depending upon the situation, by self knowledge.

Otto Rank informs us that for man “knowledge about himself interferes with naïve action, restrains him and torments without affording him the satisfaction and liberation which the deed grants. He cannot accomplish through action any more because he thinks, because he knows too much. Now man longs for naïve unconsciousness as a source of happiness.”

Evolution by natural selection depends upon naïve preprogrammed action; without this form of unmitigated action natural selection can no longer be a significant factor in human development. Through “too much self-knowledge” we are restricted in our actions. However, through this capacity for abstract thinking, we have a creative side.

Knowing can be a substitute for living; itself a form of experiencing. Human will, resulting from self-knowledge, is the cause of an equal and negative deficit. The active hero resulting from self-knowledge can come to grief because s/he lacks the knowledge of the results of action. The passive individual cannot act because of self-knowledge restricting the will thus developing a feeling of guilt.

“The artist solves it for himself and others since he transposes the will affirmation creatively into knowledge, that is, expresses his will spiritually and changes the unavoidable guilt into ethical ideal formation, which spurs him on and qualifies him for ever higher performance in terms of self-development.”

Quotes from Truth and Reality by Otto Rank
 

Anarcho-fascist

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Evolution by natural selection depends upon naïve preprogrammed action; without this form of unmitigated action natural selection can no longer be a significant factor in human development. Through “too much self-knowledge” we are restricted in our actions.
Evolution by natural selection depends on the fact that some behavioral and physical traits are caused by genetic traits, and that those traits can affect how successful the organism is at reproducing.
 

coberst

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Extended consciousness

Antonio Damasio is a scientist who has set out to organize a scientific study of human consciousness. Damasio utilizes a rather unique method that involves careful observation of individuals who have been deprived of some aspects of consciousness because of brain lesions caused by accidents. He studies brain dysfunction caused by such things as strokes and accidents.

Damasio finds that “nearly all the sites of brain damage associated with a significant disruption of core consciousness share one important trait…these structures are of old evolutionary vintage, they are present in numerous nonhuman species, and they mature early in individual human development.”

That is to say that his evidence indicates that core consciousness is centered about the brain’s physical areas that developed very early in the evolution of life on our planet, i.e. human core consciousness is directly evolved from early animal forms.

The basic facts made available for analysis give testimony to the hypothesis that consciousness is not a monolith. Most importantly there is an abrupt division between what is identified as core consciousness and extended consciousness. There are also distinguishing levels within extended consciousness it self. When core consciousness fails then extended consciousness follows.


Many non human creatures have emotions—“human emotions however have evolved to making connections to complex ideas, values, principles, and judgments”—thus human emotion is special—the impact of feelings on humans is the result of consciousness—a distinct difference between feeling and knowing a feeling—“neither the emotion or the feeling caused by the emotion is conscious”—these things happen in a biological state—there are three stages here; emotion, feeling, and consciousness of feeling—consciousness must be present if feelings have an influence beyond the here and the now—consciousness is tooted in the representation of the body.

We need not be conscious of the emotion or the inducer of the emotion—we are about as effective in stopping an emotion as in stopping a sneeze.

“Emotions are about the life of an organism, its body to be precise, and their role is to assist the organism in maintaining life…emotions are biologically determined processes, depending upon innately set brain devices, laid down by long evolutionary history…The devices that produce emotions…are part of a set of structures that both regulate and represent body states…All devices can be engaged automatically, without conscious deliberation…The variety of the emotional responses is responsible for profound changes in both the body landscape and the brain landscape. The collection of these changes constitutes the substrate for the neural patterns which eventually become feelings of emotion.”

The biological function of emotions is to produce an automatic action in certain situations and to regulate the internal processes so that the creature is able to support the action dictated by the situation. The biological purpose of emotions are clear, they are not a luxury but a necessity for survival.

“It is through feelings, which are inwardly directed and private, that emotions, which are outwardly directed and public, begin their impact on the mind; but the full and lasting impact of feelings requires consciousness, because only along with the advent of a sense of self do feelings become known to the individual having them.”

Damasio proposes “that the term feeling should be reserve for the private, mental experience of an emotion, while the term emotion should be used to designate the collection of responses, many of which are publicly observable.” This means that while we can observe our own private feelings we cannot observe these same feelings in others.

Core consciousness—“occurs when the brain’s representation devices generate an imaged, nonverbal account of how the organism’s own state is affected by the organism’s processing of an object, and when this process enhances the image of the causative object, thus placing it saliently in a spatial and temporal context”

First, there is emotion, then comes feeling, then comes core consciousness of feeling. There is no evidence that we are conscious of all our feelings, in fact evidence indicates that we are not conscious of all feelings.

Humans have extended consciousness, which takes core consciousness to the level of self consciousness and the awareness of mortality.

Extended consciousness is the consciousness we normally speak of and that is the autobiographical consciousness possessed by humans.

“Extended consciousness goes beyond the here and now of core consciousness. Extended consciousness places these same experiences in a broader canvas and over a longer period of time. Extended consciousness still hinges on the same core “you”. But that “you” is now connected to the lived past and anticipated future that are part of your autobiographical record…autobiographical memories are objects, and the brain treats them as such, allows each of them to relate to the organism in the manner described for core consciousness, and thus allows each of them to generate a pulse of core consciousness, a sense of self knowing.”

This is why we have the ability to learn and the ability to retain records of experiences. “The ability to reactivate those records in such a way that, as objects, they, too, can generate “a sense of self knowing,” and thus be known”.



Quotes from The Feeling of what Happens: Body and Emotion in the Making of Consciousness by Antonio Damasio
 

Republic_Of_Public

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All other animals are creatures of naïve action determined strictly by emotions, i.e. instinct that is obeyed by non reflective programmed action.
...Hence the knee-jerk accusations of racism, sexism, homophobia and other silly names hurled out by the trendy Left against virtually anyone reacting against their touchy-feely PC doctrine. That as recent example Gillian Duffy found when telling the Prime Minister of her concerns at an overcrowded job market and the national debt, with even other DP posters lining up to insult her for daring to speak her independent mind.

Hell, even Germaine Greer and Julie Birchill were piled into by fellow mad dogs when they calmed down a little in later years!





http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/a...-Sky-Newss-joyful-bigoted-woman-coverage.html
 
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John Doe

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...Hence the knee-jerk accusations of racism, sexism, homophobia and other silly names hurled out by the trendy Left against virtually anyone reacting against their touchy-feely PC doctrine.
You know sweeping generalizations make you look like an idiot, right?

By the way, that "touchy-feely PC doctrine" is an attempt at removing prejudice, not being over-sensitive.
 

Civil1z@tion

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All other animals are creatures of naïve action determined strictly by emotions, i.e. instinct that is obeyed by non reflective programmed action. Humans however are aided or hindered, depending upon the situation, by self knowledge.
This part of the quote really bugs me just because of how wrong it is. Take ravens for example, which scientists show to be using logic. If you want to say that ultimately all use of logic by animals is prompted by emotions, well that how it works in humans. We do X action in order to feel emotion A or avoid emotion B. As for self-knowledge I see no evidence why we should consider human self-knowledge qualitatively different than animal self-knowledge. Yes humans tend to have more complex thoughts but that is a difference of quantity not kind. I'll still eat meat because ultimately I don't view the herbivore as morally superior. That's a stupid idea brought on from the thought that herbivores are less dangerous to us and thus must be good. Harming or killing plants to survive is no morally worse or better than killing animals. It is a necessary part of life that things die and its better that that which dies does so in a way that benefits other lifeforms than to be cut out of the food chain.
 

coberst

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This part of the quote really bugs me just because of how wrong it is. Take ravens for example, which scientists show to be using logic. If you want to say that ultimately all use of logic by animals is prompted by emotions, well that how it works in humans. We do X action in order to feel emotion A or avoid emotion B. As for self-knowledge I see no evidence why we should consider human self-knowledge qualitatively different than animal self-knowledge. Yes humans tend to have more complex thoughts but that is a difference of quantity not kind. I'll still eat meat because ultimately I don't view the herbivore as morally superior. That's a stupid idea brought on from the thought that herbivores are less dangerous to us and thus must be good. Harming or killing plants to survive is no morally worse or better than killing animals. It is a necessary part of life that things die and its better that that which dies does so in a way that benefits other lifeforms than to be cut out of the food chain.
It is evident that many animals have reasoning skills. However, humans alone have an ego which says HOLD IT, TIME OUT until this situation is reasoned about before action is taken.

The ego is our command center; it is the “internal gyroscope” and creator of time for the human. It controls the individual; especially it controls individual’s response to the external environment. It keeps the individual independent from the environment by giving the individual time to think before acting. It is the device that other animal do not have and thus they instinctively respond immediately to the world.

The id is our animal self. It is the human without the ego control center. The id is reactive life and the ego changes that reactive life into delayed thoughtful life. The ego is also the timer that provides us with a sense of yesterday, today, and tomorrow. By doing so it makes us into philosophical beings conscious of our self as being separate from the ‘other’ and placed in a river of time with a terminal point—death. This time creation allows us to become creatures responding to symbolic reality that we alone create.

As a result of the id there is a “me” to which everything has a focus of being. The most important job the ego has is to control anxiety that paradoxically the ego has created. With a sense of time there comes a sense of termination and with this sense of death comes anxiety that the ego embraces and gives the “me” time to consider how not to have to encounter anxiety.

Evidence indicates that there is an “intrinsic symbolic process” is some primates. Such animals may be able to create in memory other events that are not presently going on. “But intrinsic symbolization is not enough. In order to become a social act, the symbol must be joined to some extrinsic mode; there must exist an external graphic mode to convey what the individual has to express…but it also shows how separate are the worlds we live in, unless we join our inner apprehensions to those of others by means of socially agreed symbols.”

“What they needed for a true ego was a symbolic rallying point, a personal and social symbol—an “I”, in order to thoroughly unjumble himself from his world the animal must have a precise designation of himself. The “I”, in a word, has to take shape linguistically…the self (or ego) is largely a verbal edifice…The ego thus builds up a world in which it can act with equanimity, largely by naming names.” The primate may have a brain large enough for “me” but it must go a step further that requires linguistic ability that permits an “I” that can develop controlled symbols with “which to put some distance between him and immediate internal and external experience.”

I conclude from this that many primates have the brain that is large enough to be human but in the process of evolution the biological apparatus that makes speech possible was the catalyst that led to the modern human species. The ability to emit more sophisticated sounds was the stepping stone to the evolution of wo/man. This ability to control the vocal sounds promoted the development of the human brain.

Ideas and quotes from “Birth and Death of Meaning”—Ernest Becker
 

Toothpicvic

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Evolution has not prepared us for this
Being created by dust by a fictional magic sky man has not prepared us for this.

BTW who created him? Is he just an "accident". That's even less likely since he's much more powerful than us, right?
 

Anarcho-fascist

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Being created by dust by a fictional magic sky man has not prepared us for this.

BTW who created him? Is he just an "accident". That's even less likely since he's much more powerful than us, right?
What are you talking about?
 

Toothpicvic

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What are you talking about?
This looks like more creationist talking point crap to me. I don't know the source, so first I don't trust anything the article says at all.

Second, if anything in the article is true, it doesn't prove creationism, it just means that scientists don't have all the answers yet.
 
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