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In the Name of God بسم الله
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Hypothetically Suppose a living person's memories, thoughts, dreams, ideas, loves, and hates could all be transferred to a computer. Would the computer be a person? I'm not talking about AI. I'm talking about a biological to mechanical data transfer. Perhaps this transferred person (?) could operate a mechanical body, or maybe even a biological body whose brain has been irreparably damaged. If we had the technology to do this, would the result be a person or a thing? And why? Is the soul part of the brain, or is it something else?
The central paradigm of contemporary psychology and neuroscience is that the mind = the brain. This is taken for granted, but why believe it? The main reason that is given is that changes in the brain seem to correlate with changes in the mind,e.g. put someone in an fMRI scanner and ask them to think about certain things, and parts of the brain 'light up' on the fMRI image. Damage to the brain can cause damage to the mind, e.g. multiple strokes can lead to vascular dementia involving memory loss and personality changes. All this shows an intimate correlation between the brain and the mind, so the mind must be nothing over and above the brain. The fallacy of this argument is that correlation entails identity: If two things occur together then they must be identical. This is wrong. If two things occur together, then they are linked, but not necessarily identical. For example, take a radio. Electrical activity in the circuit board correlates with the sound produced, and if you make changes to the circuit board you also change the sound, but we dont say that the sound is = the electrical activity or the circuit board. Nor is the sound completely explained by the electrical activity, as this would exclude the radio presenter from the explanation when he is the actual cause of the sound. Of course this doesnt prove that the mind is other than the brain, only that the main reason for thinking they are identical is flawed. Here are some other bad reasons for thinking they are identical: http://www.unc.edu/~ujanel/GIVING%20DUALISM.pdf The paper is written by an atheist philosopher.
(bismillah) (salam) In this post, I have made a connection between a couple of recent brain studies, a Quranic verse and an authentic tradition. http://unveilingthelight.blogspot.com Please read it and let me know what you think. :) Enjoy. and eltemase dua. (salam)
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