Monday, October 18, 2010

278: Supersense and the Body

Not only regarding the mind makes our supersense us think that it is independent of the body. Also regarding our biology offers our supersense, our ability to hold supernatural beliefs, interesting perspectives.

You certainly know about conjoined twins, bearded ladies, microencephalics, shemales, dwarfs, giants, and albinos. I wonder? Should I add homosexual and lesbian people also to this list?

A lot of people call these beings human freaks and in fact, this is very odd, for the only thing you really can say is that they represent only a small percentage of the human species.

Are they human beings or not? A lot of people might say…hmmm…yes…no..well…yes, but they are freaks. But where does this biological insight come from. Well, one would reply, such beings are not really a human male or female….you know. They are freaks of nature.

What is revealed by this way of thinking is a result of our supersense. It teaches us to believe that there is The FEMALE and The MALE as the real categories in nature.

Just like the intuitive theories of the mind that we saw in the previous lectures, intuitive biological theories of life lead us to assume a number of ideas that lay the foundation for supernatural thinking.


In biology identity and uniqueness of an organism is established by DNA.

Measurable quantities of energy are produced by the so called Krebs cycle, a chemical reaction in the cell.

No man, not even a fly, is an island. We are all part of a large eco-system. This means that biological systems are interconnected.

Examples of it you find in evolutionary theory, in symbiotic physiology and for instance in the "Gaia" theory of ecology of James Lovelock.

But our supersense makes us believe that there is more than these scientific facts. Before we knew all these facts, humans naturally assumed their existence in the form of intuitive essentialism, vitalism and holism.

I guess that a perfect example of this way of thinking about nature is the famous saying in the Star War movies: "May the Force be with you !" We intuitively know what it meant……

We infer essential, vital, and connected properties operating in the world that go beyond what has been scientifically proven.

We might get in trouble if we were asked to describe what the Force really is, but ok….

Maybe when you understand Feng Shui, a 3000 years old chinese philosophy that teaches how the environment can influence happiness, you'll get a glimpse of the meaning of the force, named "Chi"

Thus, our natural way of thinking about life tells us that there are essences, which in living organisms are fueled by a life force (élan vital), while all is part of a whole.

We regard this as a rather acceptable line of reasoning and you find example in philosophy. It was the great Plato (428 - 348 BC) himself, who believed in the existence of essences.

And my namesake, Henri-Louis Bergson (1859 - 1941), introduced with his philosophy of vitalism the "élan vital", an ubiquitous force.

How we develop this essentialist vitalist, holistic frame of mine with our supersense will be our subject for the next lectures.

The Discussion

[13:21] herman Bergson: Thank you...:-)
[13:21] Bejiita Imako: ㋡
[13:21] herman Bergson: If you have a question or remark..the floor is yours ^_^
[13:22] Bejiita Imako: hmm this concept with chi is kind of widespread for sure
[13:22] Alarice Beaumont: great lesson... read some about feng shui and explored some places when being in hongkong
[13:22] Bejiita Imako: used in many different ways
[13:22] herman Bergson: Yes Feng Shui is popular....
[13:22] Alarice Beaumont: quite remarkable how even the architecture is influenced this
[13:23] Alarice Beaumont: not only a believe alone.. like others... more a kind of lifestyle
[13:23] herman Bergson: I had a colleague, professor in architecture who used Feng Shui as guidlines for his design...
[13:24] herman Bergson: But of course the whole idea is generated by our supersense....
[13:24] herman Bergson: We love to believe that there is more.....whatever it is
[13:24] Gemma Cleanslate: yes but here is more about the placement of furniture
[13:24] Gemma Cleanslate: for a good chi
[13:24] Alarice Beaumont: yes and it's somehow funny that a bad ghost is hindered in entering a house just by building the entrance not straight.
[13:24] Alarice Beaumont: yes.. water and stone too
[13:24] Gemma Cleanslate: ♥ LOL ♥
[13:24] Gemma Cleanslate: never heard that
[13:24] Gemma Cleanslate: nice one
[13:25] Alarice Beaumont: am quite fascinated by it
[13:25] herman Bergson: Yes even a plant in the corridor can do the job
[13:25] Bejiita Imako: an extreme example of the use of this force is from the series my avatar is from, there my character type called saiyans can focus huge amounts of this energy and focus to a beam than can even blast planets to pieces
[13:25] herman Bergson: But here we have the quinessence of the problem....
[13:25] herman Bergson: we have no means to prove that bad ghosts exist...
[13:26] herman Bergson: and even when they exist we have no means to prove that a not straight door keeps them out
[13:26] herman Bergson: typical supernatural law of nature applies here
[13:26] Bejiita Imako: have heard many examples of haunted houses
[13:26] Alarice Beaumont: and still people believe in it.. official buildings are build reagarding those rules!
[13:27] Bejiita Imako: where people say they hear someone walking on the nights on the attics and so
[13:27] herman Bergson: Oh yes....!
[13:27] Bejiita Imako: lot of such stories
[13:27] herman Bergson: I know Bejiita...not a single one has a solid proof however
[13:27] herman Bergson: But again.....
[13:27] Bejiita Imako: nope
[13:27] herman Bergson: read me well....
[13:28] herman Bergson: I dont say that supernatural thinking is utter nonsense and should be forbidden....
[13:28] herman Bergson: A man like Dawkins would plead for that....
[13:28] herman Bergson: I dont...
[13:28] herman Bergson: supernatural thinking is a part of how our brain works...
[13:28] herman Bergson: you cant deny that....
[13:29] Bejiita Imako: true
[13:29] Alarice Beaumont: no.. true
[13:29] herman Bergson: what I try to explain is WHY we love this supernatural thinking...
[13:29] herman Bergson: and how to deal with it....
[13:29] herman Bergson: We take a lot of decisions based on supernatural thinking.....
[13:30] herman Bergson: take religious choices, moslim terrorists, suicide bommers and so on...
[13:30] Alarice Beaumont: which the people won't admit when ask... or do you think most will?
[13:30] herman Bergson: Religious people would admit it ...
[13:31] herman Bergson: We have christian political parties here
[13:31] herman Bergson: there exists christian democratic politics...whatever it may be
[13:31] herman Bergson: we have three belief systems....
[13:32] herman Bergson: science, religion and supernatural beliefs (astrology etc.)
[13:32] herman Bergson: what it is all about is the truth claim...
[13:33] Alaya Kumaki: yes the monolitism world perspective is also coming from a central supernatural being
[13:33] herman Bergson: and to establish the truth we need an intersubjective method to do so...
[13:33] herman Bergson: the only method we have discovered so far is scientific method...
[13:34] herman Bergson: so that is our situation
[13:34] herman Bergson: this leads to the question....
[13:35] herman Bergson: why are we willing to take for true what can not prove it is true... (religion/supernatural)?
[13:35] Gemma Cleanslate: back to the begiining again ....
[13:35] Gemma Cleanslate: our early life?
[13:35] Gemma Cleanslate: our environment?
[13:35] Alaya Kumaki: well the paradise that was here seems to have been put out there into the supernatural world, and then no care but the run to the grant has been push on, no care for our natural world out there,,
[13:35] herman Bergson: Yes….GEamma…
[13:36] Bejiita Imako: cause when we don't know we MUST have an explanation for anyway i guess
[13:36] herman Bergson: we have seen that the brain is wired to do so...
[13:36] herman Bergson: Yes Bejiita...our primary drive...
[13:36] Alaya Kumaki: the brain is also wired to biology understanding
[13:36] herman Bergson: to discover patterns and structures in nature
[13:37] herman Bergson: If you mean scientific knowledge of our biology Alaya , yes
[13:37] Alaya Kumaki: yes biology of our nature too
[13:38] herman Bergson: and there we make big progress , especially in the field of neurobiology
[13:39] Alaya Kumaki: well not so much yet, my son was having an operation in the brans, when a tiny baby, and they dont know much yet, not yet
[13:39] herman Bergson: In a way it solved philosophical disputes...
[13:39] herman Bergson: I agree Alaya,....
[13:39] Alaya Kumaki: itsa beginning they say they never know what is coming out its very complex
[13:40] herman Bergson: oh yes....
[13:40] Alarice Beaumont: will never really be fully explored.. i think
[13:40] herman Bergson: if you compare the progress in the field with the complexity of this subject, we are just at the beginning
[13:40] Alarice Beaumont: too much.. people are to different, they cannot be pressed into a sheme
[13:41] herman Bergson: No Alarice....we still dont understand the concept of Mind....
[13:41] Alaya Kumaki: imagine they create medz that act through neural field, and they have surprise , like for prozak ,ext, other response of other neural connection , to many connections interacting together
[13:41] herman Bergson: like the Self, or personal identity....
[13:42] herman Bergson: It will be a big philosophical puzzle to answer the question...what makes a person to a unique person...
[13:43] Gemma Cleanslate: yes it will
[13:43] Alarice Beaumont: yes sure is
[13:43] herman Bergson: So still plenty of work to do :-)
[13:43] Bejiita Imako: yes
[13:43] Gemma Cleanslate: never ending
[13:43] Alaya Kumaki: herman, because there is only one persons sitting at that person's places;)
[13:44] Gemma Cleanslate: too easy we might all be thinking the same way
[13:44] Gemma Cleanslate: exactly the same
[13:44] Gemma Cleanslate: and dont
[13:44] herman Bergson: But by clarifying the presence of the supersense in our brain, it helps use to drop at least a number of explanations...
[13:44] herman Bergson: Like the presence of an immortal soul for instance
[13:45] herman Bergson: looks around......
[13:45] herman Bergson: hmm...nobody seems to care about that anymore ^_^
[13:46] Gemma Cleanslate: well would be nice
[13:46] Alarice Beaumont: the soul lives on :-) the soul is energy
[13:46] Beertje Beaumont: how do you know?
[13:46] herman Bergson: We'll see Alarice :-)
[13:47] Gemma Cleanslate: you missed last week Alarice
[13:47] Gemma Cleanslate: :-)
[13:47] Beertje Beaumont: no one ever came back
[13:47] Alarice Beaumont: yes.. and i have to admit.. i didn't read the blog before coming
[13:47] herman Bergson: no Beertje.... I am still waiting for that too
[13:47] Beertje Beaumont: it will never happen
[13:47] Alaya Kumaki: nobody resurrected so far, its my believes
[13:48] herman Bergson: Very complicated subject...
[13:48] bergfrau Apfelbaum: thanks for the interesting lecture, herman,… he works still longer, in me
[13:48] Alaya Kumaki: the legend of coming back from the under world, meant something else and its a very old legend that was repeated
[13:48] Gemma Cleanslate: ▓▒░ ♪♫♩ ॐ ॐ ॐ ((-: QWARK :-)) ॐ ॐ ॐ ♪♫♩ ▓▒░
[13:48] Gemma Cleanslate: is doing 80-90 today at the corner cave
[13:49] Gemma Cleanslate: and i will bring the intan
[13:49] Qwark Allen: yes
[13:49] herman Bergson: Yes a number of religions have such a story
[13:49] Gemma Cleanslate: yes
[13:49] Bejiita Imako: ah
[13:49] Gemma Cleanslate: and the buddhists believe in many lives
[13:49] herman Bergson: Well....We'll continue next Tuesday....
[13:49] Alarice Beaumont: yes.
[13:49] Gemma Cleanslate: ok see you then
[13:50] Gemma Cleanslate: come to the party!!
[13:50] Qwark Allen: :-)
[13:50] Gemma Cleanslate: your kind of dance music today
[13:50] Alaya Kumaki: it was found to be an old old legend and some images in a cave about it are still in italy, a very older legend than the religions one,,,
[13:50] herman Bergson: Thank you all for your participation.... :-)
[13:50] Gemma Cleanslate: ♥ Thank Youuuuuuuuuu!! ♥
[13:50] Bejiita Imako: ㋡
[13:50] herman Bergson: Clas dismissed....
[13:50] Qwark Allen: ¸¸.☆´ ¯¨☆.¸¸`☆** **☆´ ¸¸.☆¨¯`☆ H E R MA N ☆´ ¯¨☆.¸¸`☆** **☆´ ¸¸.☆¨¯`
[13:50] Qwark Allen: thank you
[13:50] herman Bergson: Party time, Gemma!
[13:50] Qwark Allen: very interesting subject
[13:50] Bejiita Imako: this was nice as usual
[13:50] Bejiita Imako: aaa yeah
[13:50] herman Bergson: thank you...
[13:51] Beertje Beaumont: dankjewel Herman
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