What is life?

Discussion in 'General Philosophy' started by Xmo1, Aug 22, 2015.

  1. river Valued Senior Member

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    But the neuro pathway can heal itself.
     
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  3. river Valued Senior Member

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    Hmmm...
     
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  5. river Valued Senior Member

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    But logic is not all the Brain is though .
     
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  7. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

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    Yes. There are significant differences between a living and non-living machine. But it doesn't change the fact that both neural pathways and a circuit board will transmit information electronically (i.e. electrons).
    Ultimately all things obey rules, whether we understand those rules or not. There may be a level of randomness in the brain, due to quantum events, but neurons, I believe, behave akin to (fuzzy) logic gates.
    But then the brain is also living matter, and so will be capable of numerous other things that separates living matter from dead matter. This does not negate the similarity between the neural pathways and circuit boards, though.

    To argue against the similarity you have to present something that is intended to be within the remit of the analogy, not merely describe a difference that the analogy never intended to explain.
    It would be like comparing a bird and an aircraft in the way they glide, yet you then saying that the analogy in this regard is wrong because aircraft don't feed their offspring.
     
  8. river Valued Senior Member

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    Define logic ; fuzzy or not.

    What as well comes before logic?
     
  9. C C Consular Corps - "the backbone of diplomacy" Valued Senior Member

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    Officially or in terms of biology's operating presuppositions: Self-replicating organizations of matter should have no inherent teleological inclination for even developing brains / thinking (at either an insect or mammalian level). There are far more harsh conditions than benign ones in the cosmos, so life probably never evolves beyond the microbial or single-celled stage in most cases. It might even have required the freak pressures of multiple snowball-hothouse cycles to have stimulated the emergence of complex organisms on Earth.

    Despite some infrequent extinction cataclysms, Earth has enjoyed an unusually mild existence due to its rural location in the galaxy. Missing all sorts of fun in the interior where planets are more often in the short path of effects from gamma-ray bursts, supernovas, gravitational perturbations from more densely packed stars, etc. The incubation of polycellular life requires long-term protection and pampering with maybe special, intermittent hardships thrown in. It's not necessarily a universal given that even if the ideal environment is supplied, a metazoan trend (much less a "brainy" neural one) will fall out of simpler biotic agencies.

    But OTOH, all we're familiar with are the habits of carbon / water based life and its seeming absence of anything intricate in the crueler conditions of Sol's other planets, moons, etc (granting that some extremophile microorganisms from Earth could be dormant elsewhere). Entities grounded in plasma, interacting intersellar dust grains, or even dark matter, if possible, might arise, survive, and become complex in bare, unstable, or outlandish circumstances. Perhaps rather mundane-leaning alternative chemistries might be super-hardy as well, but their potential versatility doesn't even match up to that of carbon.

    However, any radically different substrates that could nurture complex life better in brutal situations still would not in and of itself make the outputting of mindful creatures a global expectation of evolution, or beyond doubt increase the possibility of such occurring. (The scenario at least offers why English does need the more generic category of "mind", since the narrowed specificity of a "brain" organ [with respect to non-artificial terrestrial life here] is not the only way degrees of sapient and perceptual behavior can be instantiated.)
     
  10. Waiter_2001 Registered Senior Member

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    I believe I have discovered the mathematical formula to life! It is based upon a family tree:

    Should we assign 1 to the Father, 2 to the Mother and 3 to the child then the following is simply TRUE:

    1+2=3

    2+1=3

    The following is also true: 3/2=1.5

    ...with 2 as the whole (1) and 1 being the half (1 is half of two.)

    We may extend such mathematical investigation further and apply it to a family tree, with each person being assigned a value (1):

    1+1+1+1
    1+1
    1

    Each ONE has two parents (1+1), and each of those parents has two parents (our grand-parents.)

    The formula to discovering our place (or designated number) in the world is:

    1/2/4

    or:

    1/(2*4)

    or:

    1/8

    This gives us a mathematical number with relation to our grandparents. However as one can see from a family tree the population BEFORE us is greater than at present or in the future. Why is it then that the population is supposedly growing. I would be greatly interested should anyone be able to whittle a family tree down to one (or even two.) This would surely be a great discovery.

    I simply wish to discover MY value, i.e. what number my introduction to the world is granted.
     
  11. Waiter_2001 Registered Senior Member

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    Ah logic. My first love! Logic has rules, follows laws and is therefore TRUE! ANYTHING that can be defined as true may be extended to a logical progression: IF...THEN.

    And so we may discover truth from a simple ASSUMPTION: an investigation is predicated on WANTING to disocver an answer, or know a truth. However should we KNOW something then an investigation is not warranted. However an assumption (IF) may produce an answer (THEN) which if simply TRUE has indeed delivered that which we search for (truth.)
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2015
  12. Daecon Kiwi fruit Valued Senior Member

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    You know that parents can have more than just one child, right?
     
  13. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    Life is the universe's way of gazing at its own navel.

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  14. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    To whom would you assign #1? The path from blue-green alga to proto-primate to human is a continuum.
     
  15. Waiter_2001 Registered Senior Member

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    The first singular would be #1.
     
  16. Waiter_2001 Registered Senior Member

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    "Life is what happens when your busy planning other things."-John Lennon.
     
  17. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    I don't know what that means. What is the "first singular"?

    The first blue-green alga?
     
  18. river Valued Senior Member

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    So you ignore the significant differences between a living and non-living thing; to make your point; I see.

    Hence your comparison between the Brain and a circuit board is extremely weak.
     
  19. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

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    Wtf?? The question you asked wasn't about those differences, but as to whether the neurons work in the same way as a circuit board. They do in as much as has been explained to you.
    If you now wish to complain that the comparison to a circuit board does not also address those other differences then it is clear you are just here to have an argument, which I'm sure you can do quite well on your own.
    It was not my comparison, it was yours. I'm sorry that you can't seem to understand what an analogy is, and how it can be used to address a specific similarity rather than be required to cover everything. I'm sorry that you seem incapable of having a sensible discussion.

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  20. Waiter_2001 Registered Senior Member

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    If nothing else #1 would be the FIRST BEING, whatever that may be. Human or otherwise. The first ONE.
     
  21. river Valued Senior Member

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    Sarkus

    The circuit board is restricted by the circuits precut or programmed into the board.

    Life can by pass a pathway. Electronics can't.
     
  22. Waiter_2001 Registered Senior Member

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    Unless as some claim mathematics is a definitive entity. Circuit boards and computers are simply following those laws. This is as the age old debate: are computers based upon humans or are humans based upon computers. We only use the decimal system and count to ten because we have ten fingers...
     
  23. kx000 Valued Senior Member

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    I disagree. If the universe were to always exist and there were only so many shapes and colors wouldn't we occur forever? Samsara.
     

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