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Author Topic:   Do animals have souls?
smak_84
Inactive Member


Message 76 of 303 (306131)
04-23-2006 12:57 PM
Reply to: Message 74 by crashfrog
04-23-2006 10:51 AM


Re: About hydrozoa and scyphozoa...
First:
f you don't like the way your behavior is described, change your behavior. We were on perfectly civil terms until you chose to respond to the correction of your mistake by becoming condecending.
My intent was not to be condecending. How was I? I was clarifying my response. If my language sounded offensive for some reason I apologize, I didn't mean anything malicious.
I've never seen a TV commercial that used the word "bacteria" in such an imprecise manner. I believe the word you're looking for is "germ."
Perhaps I remembered the commercials I've seen incorrectly, again I apologize.
No, it's not. Canis lupis is a different species than Canis familiaris.
Same genus perhaps both are dogs in that sense?
How would it?
If the existence of immaterial and material things were tied together, creation of material things (not the ex nihilo creation - creation as in the creation of an artwork) would necessarily effect immaterial realities whose existence is tied to them.
uperfamily Hominoidea does indeed encompass a considerable range of species diversity. So what? From the genetic information we know that humans belong to superfamily Hominoidea. Look, you can look it up if you don't believe me.
What, you didn't think humans appeared in the taxonomy? Maybe you don't think we're mammals, either? Or vertebrates?
Again, quit using ad hominem attacks during debate, just present your point as it says in the rules for these discussions:
10. Always treat other members with respect. Argue the position, not the person. Avoid abusive, harassing and invasive behavior. Avoid needling, hectoring and goading tactics.
The fact that the human intellective process has created things animals haven't even come close to (but only resemble in simpler occurances - like language) shows we are vastly different from apes.
Let me also clarify my position: I'm not doubting the possibility of the process proposed in the evolution theory (the only stipulation is that I think it's impossible for it to be a random occurance...it seems to have been guided).
Which philosophy do you recommend? Be specific. I need authors and titles, please.
Philosophy to read for starters would be Aristotle's Physics, Metaphysics, and Nicomachean Ethics. Just for a beginning of the concepts behind these terms (not that Aristotle is not the final word on these things...but it gives an idea of these philosophical concepts).
Sometimes you can construct a chair, though, that people don't immediately recognize as a chair. Sometimes you can see a tree that you don't immediately recognize as a tree.
Provide evidence for these observations please.
not enlist a cadre of musty old codgers to do it for you.
The philosophy peresented by these guys is the basis for the scientific method. The concept of the scientific method was an ancient Greek invention that came out of this philosophical work. Since physical science depends on this concept devloped by these guys, it is possible that they might have more to teach that is useful and important to this discussion.
pretend that I've actually read the major works of those philosophers and rejected their arguments as unsound and contradicted by the facts.
You cannot reject their arguements if you have not read them. Further you cannot say they're contrary to fact if you have not read them.
This message has been edited by smak_84, 04-23-2006 12:42 PM

This message is a reply to:
 Message 74 by crashfrog, posted 04-23-2006 10:51 AM crashfrog has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 84 by crashfrog, posted 04-23-2006 11:09 PM smak_84 has replied

smak_84
Inactive Member


Message 77 of 303 (306134)
04-23-2006 1:48 PM
Reply to: Message 75 by Quetzal
04-23-2006 12:33 PM


Re: Wolves and Trees
As far as essence is concerned: what makes us human? What are the necessary things to be present for a human being to be a human being? This is what essence is.
In defense of form:
What causes something to be that species?
The Genetic Code (this is one cause).
What Causes the Genetic Code to have that Code?
The Adenosine, Thyamine, Guanine, Cytosine sequences (and the rare modifications of these) held to the phosphodiester backbone.
What causes these molecules to exist?
The the intermolecular forces between compatable elements.
What causes these intermolecular forces?
Opposite charges and a little bit of gravity.
Why do opposite charges or gravity cause attraction between two physical bodies?
....
There are theories, but no real proven explaination. Might I propose an immaterial form that holds the bits of subatomic particles together?
Thank you Quetzal for your comments. They have been most helpful. Some background reading will be quite helpful to deepen my understanding of the topic.
This message has been edited by smak_84, 04-23-2006 02:27 PM
This message has been edited by smak_84, 04-23-2006 02:28 PM

This message is a reply to:
 Message 75 by Quetzal, posted 04-23-2006 12:33 PM Quetzal has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 78 by Quetzal, posted 04-23-2006 4:50 PM smak_84 has replied
 Message 79 by kalimero, posted 04-23-2006 5:25 PM smak_84 has not replied

Quetzal
Member (Idle past 5990 days)
Posts: 3228
Joined: 01-09-2002


Message 78 of 303 (306158)
04-23-2006 4:50 PM
Reply to: Message 77 by smak_84
04-23-2006 1:48 PM


Re: Wolves and Trees
To be honest here, smak, I'm not entirely clear what your response had to do with my post? Perhaps you'd be willing to flesh out your response a bit. Maybe addressing the specific examples I provided, and showing how an immaterial whatever effects the form - and how those different "forms" I mentioned can be related back to your concept? Thanks.
As to the rest of the argument - although I've been reading your exchanges here, I'm still not quite getting your reasoning. This response appears to me to be a sort of reductio outline of the genotype => phenotype transition but without the critical environment component. However, I admit I'm not sure that's what you're arguing. I mean, you seem to be ending up at the level of "Physics didit", which I guess I can't argue with. After all, biology is based on chemistry which is based ultimately on physics, so it seems you've arrived at a true, albeit trivial, statement. Correct me if I'm wrong, but at this point I don't see how that relates to the essentialist position outlined in the OP.
Some background reading will be quite helpful to deepen my understanding of the topic.
I'm a firm believer in reading. The Wilson book is my all-time-favorite lay treatment of the topic, and the Mayr book gets into the technical nuts and bolts. They make a good complement to each other. Enjoy!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 77 by smak_84, posted 04-23-2006 1:48 PM smak_84 has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 80 by smak_84, posted 04-23-2006 6:03 PM Quetzal has replied

kalimero
Member (Idle past 2562 days)
Posts: 251
From: Israel
Joined: 04-08-2006


Message 79 of 303 (306163)
04-23-2006 5:25 PM
Reply to: Message 77 by smak_84
04-23-2006 1:48 PM


Re: Wolves and Trees
As far as essence is concerned: what makes us human? What are the necessary things to be present for a human being to be a human being? This is what essence is.
-Another human
-What ever it is that we recognize in a human.
If you saw a hairless, large headed, two arm, two leg, two eye, wearing clothes - what would you think it to be?
It might be a human or it might be a hairless circus monkey. My point is that there is no determining factor of what a human is apart from what we decide the farctor should be. The factor could also change regardless of whether the human changed or not - in short, defining a human or a dog or a cat is ultimatly arrbitrary.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 77 by smak_84, posted 04-23-2006 1:48 PM smak_84 has not replied

smak_84
Inactive Member


Message 80 of 303 (306169)
04-23-2006 6:03 PM
Reply to: Message 78 by Quetzal
04-23-2006 4:50 PM


Re: Wolves and Trees
The point of my last post is to open the possibility for an immaterial substance that organizes matter (the same thing that causes the attraction between subatomic particles). This immaterial substance could network the particles correctly resulting in whatever - giving a possibility for the form.
Then a soul is a form particular to living things. Thus, since an animal is a living thing - it has a soul (back to the OP).
In your response to my comment about essence: HUMANS ARE NOT MONKEYS (even if you are playing a trick dresing a monkey up like one). You cannot possibly say that the difference between humans and monkeys is only a difference that we make. It's like saying there's absolutly no difference between a human being and a rock.
This message has been edited by smak_84, 04-23-2006 05:06 PM
This message has been edited by smak_84, 04-23-2006 05:07 PM

This message is a reply to:
 Message 78 by Quetzal, posted 04-23-2006 4:50 PM Quetzal has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 81 by kalimero, posted 04-23-2006 6:17 PM smak_84 has replied
 Message 87 by Quetzal, posted 04-24-2006 10:20 AM smak_84 has not replied

kalimero
Member (Idle past 2562 days)
Posts: 251
From: Israel
Joined: 04-08-2006


Message 81 of 303 (306179)
04-23-2006 6:17 PM
Reply to: Message 80 by smak_84
04-23-2006 6:03 PM


Re: Wolves and Trees
HUMANS ARE NOT MONKEYS
I'm not saying that they are - but I can only say that because I have a scientific (matterialistic) way of differentiating them.
even if you are playing a trick dresing a monkey up like one
If you were a child that didnt know the difference between them, then yes, I can. How would you tell the difference?
You cannot possibly say that the difference between humans and monkeys is only a difference that we make.
The words 'humans' and 'monkeys' are man-made words, agreed?
If I were to call all humans - 'Bloits', would that make all the formerly catagorized humans, Bloits? Yes it would.
It's like saying there's absolutly no difference between a human being and a rock.
If you cant tell the difference between them then no.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 80 by smak_84, posted 04-23-2006 6:03 PM smak_84 has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 83 by smak_84, posted 04-23-2006 11:02 PM kalimero has replied

1.61803
Member (Idle past 1622 days)
Posts: 2928
From: Lone Star State USA
Joined: 02-19-2004


Message 82 of 303 (306200)
04-23-2006 9:26 PM
Reply to: Message 74 by crashfrog
04-23-2006 10:51 AM


Re: About hydrozoa and scyphozoa...
crashfrog writes:
....,not enlist a cadre of musty old codgers to do it for you.
lol.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 74 by crashfrog, posted 04-23-2006 10:51 AM crashfrog has not replied

smak_84
Inactive Member


Message 83 of 303 (306220)
04-23-2006 11:02 PM
Reply to: Message 81 by kalimero
04-23-2006 6:17 PM


Re: Wolves and Trees
I'm not saying that they are - but I can only say that because I have a scientific (matterialistic) way of differentiating them.
So how about I treat a human like an inanimate object then? How about I torture an animal if there's no difference between it and a rock? Because there is a difference.
If you were a child that didnt know the difference between them, then yes, I can.
I would ask you to prove this assertion, but I won't because of reasons listed below.
The words 'humans' and 'monkeys' are man-made words, agreed?
If I were to call all humans - 'Bloits', would that make all the formerly catagorized humans, Bloits? Yes it would.
The actual auditory and visual symbols that are the words "human" and "monkey" are. The concepts, however are not human inventions. There are words with the same meaning - cervesa, peeva, beer, bier, et cetera, and they refer to a universal reality that we know as beer. If you were to ask a waiter for a beer and he got you some tar to drink, would you drink the tar as if it were beer? No, because it's objectivly not the same thing (if it is, go ahead...drink some tar). Further if two monkeys reproduce will they make a lizard? No, obviously not. Then they must objectivly be different realities - not dependent on my recognizing them different.
If you cant tell the difference between them then no.
It doesn't matter if you cannot tell the difference between them, there still is a difference. They have independant existences from each other, and different properties - so they are different things.
Unfortunately I cannot continue this discussion (as I've been learning so much from all of you). I've begun some work that's going to keep me from the internet for a while, so I cannot continue these discussions. I thank all of you for helping me learn.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 81 by kalimero, posted 04-23-2006 6:17 PM kalimero has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 88 by kalimero, posted 04-24-2006 10:21 AM smak_84 has not replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1584 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 84 of 303 (306221)
04-23-2006 11:09 PM
Reply to: Message 76 by smak_84
04-23-2006 12:57 PM


Re: About hydrozoa and scyphozoa...
Same genus perhaps both are dogs in that sense?
In what sense? "Canis" is not the genus of dogs; it's the genus that contains dogs. Members of Canis are dogs only if they belong to the familiaris species.
Now, it may be that the familiaris species contains the organism I posted that picture of, or it may be that it doesn't. As is clear from other posts, there's room for disagreement there.
If the existence of immaterial and material things were tied together, creation of material things (not the ex nihilo creation - creation as in the creation of an artwork) would necessarily effect immaterial realities whose existence is tied to them.
Then how would those realities not be material? If they can be affected by the material, and their origin is in the material world, they must be, by definition, material - not immaterial.
Again, quit using ad hominem attacks during debate
It's not ad hominem. I'm asking questions about your position because I don't understand it. Surely mutual understanding is required for fruitful discussion?
What I'm asking you is, if you reject the taxonomy that places humans in superfamily Hominoidea, what else do you reject? If humans do not belong to the family of apes, what family do you put them in?
The fact that the human intellective process has created things animals haven't even come close to (but only resemble in simpler occurances - like language) shows we are vastly different from apes.
It's a difference of degree, not anything fundamental; taxonomists don't generally use differences of degree as defining characters because individuals within a species typically vary significantly amongst themselves in regards to that character.
But assume for a second that, per your argument, we make the ability to create a symphony, for instance, the defining character of humanity. But can you write a symphony? I can't. These epic acts of creation you refer to are the exception among our species, rather than the rule. Does that mean that only a privleged few, the Mozarts and the Einstiens, are truly human? And the rest of us are what, exactly?
Or the mentally handicapped? If one is so profoundly retarded or autistic that these acts of creation are forever beyond them, do they cease to be human?
Philosophy to read for starters would be Aristotle's Physics, Metaphysics, and Nicomachean Ethics.
I don't see the relevance of ethics to this discussion. Could you elaborate? You appear to be using these materials as a dodge.
Provide evidence for these observations please.
You've never mistaken one thing for another? Not ever? That defies credibility, I must say.
The philosophy peresented by these guys is the basis for the scientific method.
Another mistake. Take it from someone employed in the sciences - the basis of science is evidence, not philosophy. Scientists don't wait around for philosophers to tell them how to do their jobs - they develop experiments to test theory, and draw narrow conclusions from the evidence. The field of "philosophy of science" is an effort to describe what scientists do, not dictate to them how to do science.
The basis of the scientific method is the history of scientists developing it to do science; not philosophers telling scientists what to do. I realize that you might have heard differently in your philosophy classes, but that's just philosophers misrepresenting the story in the way that makes them seem more important.
You cannot reject their arguements if you have not read them. Further you cannot say they're contrary to fact if you have not read them.
You don't know that I haven't read them. I have, and have rejected them as unsound. It's now incumbent on you to support your own arguments in your own words, not with reading assignments.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 76 by smak_84, posted 04-23-2006 12:57 PM smak_84 has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 85 by smak_84, posted 04-24-2006 12:12 AM crashfrog has replied

smak_84
Inactive Member


Message 85 of 303 (306235)
04-24-2006 12:12 AM
Reply to: Message 84 by crashfrog
04-23-2006 11:09 PM


Re: About hydrozoa and scyphozoa...
This is my last post, because I've got move soon and I won't have internet access.
In what sense? "Canis" is not the genus of dogs; it's the genus that contains dogs. Members of Canis are dogs only if they belong to the familiaris species.
Now, it may be that the familiaris species contains the organism I posted that picture of, or it may be that it doesn't. As is clear from other posts, there's room for disagreement there.
I don't think there's any point in my responding to this, because as demonstarted I have a lacking in the understanding of taxonomic science.
Then how would those realities not be material? If they can be affected by the material, and their origin is in the material world, they must be, by definition, material - not immaterial.
Why must all existing things be material? Do we know all things are material (now tell me what causes intermolecular attraction: possibly -- not definitly -- but possibly an immaterial reality - immeasurable so it confounds us) Immaterial substances could also describe the alleged happenings of ghosts (if they do occur) and possessions (if they do occur) and what Angels and Demons are (if they exist).
It's not ad hominem. I'm asking questions about your position because I don't understand it. Surely mutual understanding is required for fruitful discussion?
You asked me if I thought humans were vertebrates. This is something most grade schoolers understand and it is an insulting question to ask. That's why this was ad hominem.
What I'm asking you is, if you reject the taxonomy that places humans in superfamily Hominoidea, what else do you reject? If humans do not belong to the family of apes, what family do you put them in?
Refer to the first response.
But assume for a second that, per your argument, we make the ability to create a symphony, for instance, the defining character of humanity. But can you write a symphony? I can't. These epic acts of creation you refer to are the exception among our species, rather than the rule. Does that mean that only a privleged few, the Mozarts and the Einstiens, are truly human? And the rest of us are what, exactly?
Collectivly, as humanity - this has occured because humans exist - because humans are different from apes in an extraordinary way. Collectivly, apes have not accomplished a symphony so they do not have some potential capacity that humans have as humans (not necessarily as individual humans).
don't see the relevance of ethics to this discussion. Could you elaborate? You appear to be using these materials as a dodge.
The ethics uses the terms form and accident so you see how they are used philosophically.
You've never mistaken one thing for another? Not ever? That defies credibility, I must say.
Point taken. But if the difference are only those which we create. Go drink some tar, but think it's actually water and see what happens. There's actually differences between things which are not dependant on how we describe them (there are objective, sepearate existences, that differ from each other).
Another mistake. Take it from someone employed in the sciences - the basis of science is evidence, not philosophy. Scientists don't wait around for philosophers to tell them how to do their jobs - they develop experiments to test theory, and draw narrow conclusions from the evidence. The field of "philosophy of science" is an effort to describe what scientists do, not dictate to them how to do science.
Actually not a mistake. The idea of comparing before to after using dependant and independant variables was a concept thought up by the Ancient Greeks during philosophical debate, thus the most important concept in physical science is a product of philosophical debate.
You don't know that I haven't read them.
What were you talking about earlier when you said this?
If it helps you, pretend that I've actually read the major works of those philosophers and rejected their arguments as unsound and contradicted by the facts.
This seems to imply you haven't (and don't care to) read them. If you have actually read them why don't you just say that you have read them, instead of telling me to "pretend" you've read them. I'm also suggesting some reading, because concepts like form, accident, essential union and accidental unions are concepts that take college students entire semesters to grasp and understand fully (and they read texts on these things). So me trying to convey their meanings in thread debates would take an absurd amount of time...time I unfortunately no longer have.
Again, as I said at the beginning (and in the previous post), this is my last post. I thank you crashfrog, for showing me some areas I can deepen my knowledge. I thank all the rest of the individuals who've also deepened my understanding of these subjects. Farewell.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 84 by crashfrog, posted 04-23-2006 11:09 PM crashfrog has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 86 by crashfrog, posted 04-24-2006 8:39 AM smak_84 has not replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1584 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 86 of 303 (306261)
04-24-2006 8:39 AM
Reply to: Message 85 by smak_84
04-24-2006 12:12 AM


Re: About hydrozoa and scyphozoa...
Why must all existing things be material?
I didn't say that they were. But how would we define the "material world"? (Besides "that which is inhabited by a Material Girl.") If a thing can interact with the material world, and its origin is in the material world, then it is by definition "material."
now tell me what causes intermolecular attraction
I don't see the relevance of the question, but molecules interact when their constitutent atoms react as a result of their electron shells.
Refer to the first response.
But your response doesn't answer my question. In fact it's your responses that are becoming insulting.
You asked me if I thought humans were vertebrates. This is something most grade schoolers understand and it is an insulting question to ask.
How can a simple question be insulting? Regardless, grade schoolers also understand that humans are mammals, and that humans are apes. Is "what grade schoolers understand" now to be taken as the definitive character in regards to taxonomic classification?
I simply don't understand your responses on this matter. It would help if you stopped acting like your position was so obviously correct that one would have to be an idiot to disagree, and started making yourself clearer and explaining where necessary.
Collectivly, as humanity - this has occured because humans exist - because humans are different from apes in an extraordinary way.
But that's circular reasoning, because the question at stake here is who gets to belong to "collective" humanity. I mean, suppose that we included chimpanzees in "collective humanity." Wouldn't then they be able to share in the credit of composing Beethoven's 5th, and thus be human?
Or, conversely, if we assume that the autistic individuals do not belong to "collective humanity", then the fact that other humans were able to compose is irrelevant to their status. We'd have to consider them something besides human.
Your reasoning is circular because, with the term "collective humanity", you're assuming what I've asked you to demonstrate.
Go drink some tar, but think it's actually water and see what happens. There's actually differences between things which are not dependant on how we describe them (there are objective, sepearate existences, that differ from each other).
Tar isn't sticky and black because it has the tar "essence"; it's sticky and black because its a mixture of different hydrocarbons that have that effect. Water isn't clear and refreshing because it has a refreshing essence; it is that way because it has a chemical structure that our bodies require for life.
If you have actually read them why don't you just say that you have read them, instead of telling me to "pretend" you've read them.
Because I was trying to get you to abandon a dodge. Asking your opponent to retire and read a stack of books so that he stops being so impertinent and ignorant is an insulting way to deflect criticism of your arguments - "you can't possibly be right because you're so ignorant." It's an ad hominem, which I was politely trying to get you to stop doing. Sadly, you didn't seem to get the hint.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 85 by smak_84, posted 04-24-2006 12:12 AM smak_84 has not replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 90 by 1.61803, posted 04-24-2006 9:51 PM crashfrog has replied

Quetzal
Member (Idle past 5990 days)
Posts: 3228
Joined: 01-09-2002


Message 87 of 303 (306279)
04-24-2006 10:20 AM
Reply to: Message 80 by smak_84
04-23-2006 6:03 PM


Re: Wolves and Trees
The point of my last post is to open the possibility for an immaterial substance that organizes matter (the same thing that causes the attraction between subatomic particles). This immaterial substance could network the particles correctly resulting in whatever - giving a possibility for the form.
I'm still not sure I'm following you. Entirely my fault - age tends to ossify one's brain functions. Or so I'm told.
Anyway, I think one of the difficulties I'm having is over your use of the word "immaterial" (and no, I don't mean to get into a semantic argument, most of which I think are fairly pointless, although I know that's what it sounds like). What you've described here as "immaterial" most physicists would call the strong and weak nuclear forces, etc. At the quantum level it gets a bit spookier, but that's something for you to argue with physicists about. Those are the "organizing principles" that regulate the way particles, and ultimately atoms and molecules, interact. There's nothing mystical about how adenine always pairs up with thymine, or how proteins fold, etc. It's all simply basic chemistry - that's the only way the molecules can interact - and ultimately simply physics: the properties of the various atoms that make up the nucleosides.
Now, getting from basic chemistry to biology, at least in the sense of the way the interaction of all these molecules create the physical form of the organism, is a bit more complicated. There is an additional factor that needs to be taken into consideration. Phenotype - the "form" we see - derives only in part from the basic chemistry of how molecules interact with each other. At the organism level, environment plays a substantial role in what the phenotype finally ends up looking like. Over time (i.e., generations), the environment provides a strong filter on what and how the phenotype is expressed. There is a feedback loop between environment and genotype (chemistry) that has the power to substantially alter the form. It's not an "essence" of the arrangement of particles that creates the form. It's the feedback between the molecules that make up the organism and the environment which presents the constraints on form.
The above, in a grossly oversimplified nutshell, is the basis for the diversity of life on this planet. It is the basis for descent with modification, for speciation, for adaptation, etc. You simply cannot ignore the role environment plays in deriving "endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful" (C. Darwin, 1859). The "immaterial forces" which create these forms are nothing without the power of the environment.
Then a soul is a form particular to living things. Thus, since an animal is a living thing - it has a soul (back to the OP).
This is very poetic and all, but you have unfortunately failed to substantiate the existence of such an "immaterial force" as a soul. Especially given the examples I provided in my previous post. Unless you're postulating a "soul" (whatever that is) that is subject to adaptation and modification depending on the action of the environment - which I think is metaphysically untenable - then there can be no soul-thing that molds the physical form (phenotype) of whatever organism to which you're referring. It is the environment (if anything) that molds the form we see, based on the constraints provided by the chemical make-up (genotype) of the particular organism. Over the eons, quite different forms can arise from a single lineage.
In your response to my comment about essence: HUMANS ARE NOT MONKEYS (even if you are playing a trick dresing a monkey up like one).
I'm not sure if this was supposed to be a response to me. I never even mentioned monkeys and humans. My examples were dogs and trees. Besides, I agree that humans aren't monkeys (using the terms generically). We are, however, related to monkeys, because we descended from a common ancestor. We're more closely related to the great apes to various degrees than we are monkeys, based on how long ago the common ancestor of the lineages we see today diverged. For instance, we're genetically closer to Pan than we are to Gorilla. However, we didn't descend from either one, and its been several million years since the split. Our own lineage is actually quite impoverished. There were once quite a few species on the human branch - today there's only one left. Indeed, there are few species left in our family (Hominidae). Kind of sad, really.
You cannot possibly say that the difference between humans and monkeys is only a difference that we make. It's like saying there's absolutly no difference between a human being and a rock.
I certainly wouldn't say that. There are obviously differences between monkeys and humans, just like there are differences between daisies and gumwood trees. However, as with the latter, it's a question of position on a continuum, not some discrete "essence of gumwood-tree-ness". It's a difference of degree, not kind.
As a bit of digression, have you ever had the opportunity to closely observe one of our distant cousins? My work often allows this luxury. If I may be permitted a bit of poetic fancy here - staring into the eyes of an Ateles monkey from a meter away I find I am constantly blown away: by a striking sense of recognition. I truly believe I can see myself reflected in its eyes. For me, we are clearly distant family (taxonomically order for the pedants - I was speaking figuratively). I hope you get the chance someday to see what I have seen.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 80 by smak_84, posted 04-23-2006 6:03 PM smak_84 has not replied

kalimero
Member (Idle past 2562 days)
Posts: 251
From: Israel
Joined: 04-08-2006


Message 88 of 303 (306281)
04-24-2006 10:21 AM
Reply to: Message 83 by smak_84
04-23-2006 11:02 PM


Re: Wolves and Trees
So how about I treat a human like an inanimate object then? How about I torture an animal if there's no difference between it and a rock? Because there is a difference.
How do you know, beyond material perception, that there is a difference? How can you test this?
The actual auditory and visual symbols that are the words "human" and "monkey" are. The concepts, however are not human inventions.
Very good. Now how would you say that we differentiate, apart from sensory perception, these concepts - how can we measure the immeasurable:
possibly -- not definitly -- but possibly an immaterial reality - immeasurable so it confounds us
The qustions scientists ask themselves is not if 'there realy is something (like a human)', but 'how can we prove (tentatively) that there is'. Saying that there is "possibly an immaterial reality" without being able to measure it is unscientific. You can just replace the word "immaterial reality" with "flying pigs".
No, because it's objectivly not the same thing (if it is, go ahead...drink some tar).
There is no such thing as objectivity ('competely', I think you meant), but only a subjective perception of sensual information. After all, the only thing doing any cognitive work here is your brain, how is that not subjective?
No, because it's objectivly not the same thing (if it is, go ahead...drink some tar). Further if two monkeys reproduce will they make a lizard? No, obviously not. Then they must objectivly be different realities - not dependent on my recognizing them different.
Whaaaaat?
It doesn't matter if you cannot tell the difference between them, there still is a difference. They have independant existences from each other, and different properties - so they are different things.
Once again, you can only see that because you preceve their differences by your senses. What else is there (perception)?

This message is a reply to:
 Message 83 by smak_84, posted 04-23-2006 11:02 PM smak_84 has not replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 89 by 1.61803, posted 04-24-2006 9:11 PM kalimero has replied

1.61803
Member (Idle past 1622 days)
Posts: 2928
From: Lone Star State USA
Joined: 02-19-2004


Message 89 of 303 (306346)
04-24-2006 9:11 PM
Reply to: Message 88 by kalimero
04-24-2006 10:21 AM


Re: Wolves and Trees
Hi Kalimero,
Kalimero writes:
Saying that there is "possiibly an immaterial reality"without being able to measure it is unscientific.
Heh, I think that humans have reached the limits of what can be measured. And when one goes down to the nitty gritty of what makes up our reality we leave the realm of material and enter the realm of flying pigs. lol

This message is a reply to:
 Message 88 by kalimero, posted 04-24-2006 10:21 AM kalimero has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 92 by kalimero, posted 04-25-2006 3:40 AM 1.61803 has not replied
 Message 93 by ramoss, posted 04-25-2006 8:26 AM 1.61803 has replied

1.61803
Member (Idle past 1622 days)
Posts: 2928
From: Lone Star State USA
Joined: 02-19-2004


Message 90 of 303 (306356)
04-24-2006 9:51 PM
Reply to: Message 86 by crashfrog
04-24-2006 8:39 AM


Re: About hydrozoa and scyphozoa...
I get the impression that this argument all stems from the ancient concept of dualism. Something that exist apart from itself. Aristotilian metaphyics wrapped up with Platonic shadows. But beyond this I see his point. He seems to be suggesting that there are distinct differences in objects due to they're existance apart from other things. The old alchemist thought that if they could just figure out what made gold, gold. They could make lead gold. what give gold it's goldness? We know now as you have mentioned it is a collection of atoms arranged in the configuration that makes it so. Things are only different because the chemical properties and the interactions of energy and matter differentiate the material world to be manifested as gold or lead or 'tar'. I know so many people who think that essences do differentiate matter.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 86 by crashfrog, posted 04-24-2006 8:39 AM crashfrog has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 91 by crashfrog, posted 04-24-2006 10:50 PM 1.61803 has not replied

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