Science will be able to explain the mind. Patricia Churchland shows how here:

I mean my idea was something like this: consider the follow analogies. Suppose that you were in a time capsule and you were able to go back to, let’s say the 12th century, and say to a monk who was puzzling deeply about the nature of fire. And you said to him, Look, let me tell you what it is; it’s rapid oxidation and you would go on to talk about how exactly that occurred. Now the thing about it is that, since he does not even know about elements, he still thinks there’s just earth, air, fire and water, it isn’t going to make much sense to him. So you’ve given an answer, but lacking the surrounding theoretical context it would be very hard for him to make sense of it.

And my point about the brain now is that if I were given, in an analogous way, the answer to what it is that makes for conscious states in the brain, given that how much we don’t know about fundamentals in neuroscience, I would likely not be able to make sense of the answer.

How’s that for faith? But wait a minute. I thought it was science. Never mind.

  1. GeologyJoe’s avatar

    Faith does exist in science. Except that the faith comes from within one’s self in proper execution of the scientific method.

  2. Mardé’s avatar

    Oh yes, that’s right. If you properly execute the scientific method, that’s the best you can do. But I think what she was saying is that the scientific method will eventually resolve all mysteries. I’m saying there’s a limit to that. For example, take quantum mechanics. There are still controversies on how to interpret it, what it means.


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