Showing posts from May, 2014

The top-10 most fallacious arguments of materialists

So, what are they? Here is a list...

Because we cannot change reality by merely wishing it to be different, it’s clear that reality is outside consciousness.Reality is clearly not inside our heads, therefore idealism is wrong.There are strong correlations between brain activity and subjective experience. Clearly, thus, the brain generates consciousness.Because psychoactive drugs change subjective experience, it’s clear that the brain generates consciousness.Because we are separate beings witnessing the same reality, reality has to be outside consciousness.The separation between consciousness and unconsciousness is dualist nonsense.Because reality behaves according to strict, immutable laws, it cannot be generated by consciousness.To say that a collective unconscious generates reality is equivalent to saying that reality is outside consciousness.The idea of consciousness generating reality is too metaphysical.Why would consciousness deceive us by simulating a materialist world? And the …

Raving materialists and their nonsense

Today I did something mildly exciting: I went to a militant materialist website and rattled the cage a bit. I felt the need to expose the scandalously flawed logic of a prominent materialist – a renowned neurologist – who argued that there were survival advantages for the brain to have evolved consciousness. These were his original points:

1) The brain needs to pay attention and subjective experience is required for attention.
2) The brain needs a way to distinguish a memory from an active experience. Therefore, memories and active experiences must 'feel' different subjectively.
3) Behavior conducive to survival requires motivation and, therefore, emotion.

All three are incoherent arguments within the framework and logic of materialism itself. Within the materialist logic, attention has absolutely nothing to do with a need for consciousness. Computer operating systems have the mechanical equivalent of attention (interrupts, priority policies, task scheduling, etc.) while the…

A brief, general definition of freewill

In my previous article, I explored the subject of freewill in the context of my own metaphysics: a formulation of idealism. In this brief essay, I'd like to generalize some of the principles I based my earlier discussion on, for the benefit of those interested in the topic of freewill but not necessarily interested in particular metaphysical formulations.

What is freewill? We all have an intuitive understanding of it, but when we translate that understanding into words, we often misrepresent the essence of our own intuition. Having pondered about it for a while, here is how I would define it:

Freewill is the capacity of an agent to make an intentional choice unconstrained by any factor outside that which the agent identifies itself with.
The word 'intentional' is important to differentiate a true choice from a merely random choice. A true choice entails a preference, purpose or bias of some sort, not the mere throw of dice.

Let's exemplify this definition by taking the…

Freewill explained

(Update: a follow-up article has been published)

In my book Why Materialism Is BaloneyI briefly discuss freewill. My intent there wasn't to elaborate extensively on the meaning of freewill, but rather to place our intuitive notion of it in the framework of my metaphysical model. That model, as my readers know, could be seen as an idealist metaphysics. It states that reality is exactly what it seems to be: a subjective phenomenon existing in mind, and in mind alone. One of my readers, however, recently posted a very well-argued critique of my rather brief treatment of freewill in the book. His post in my Discussion Forum has prompted me to write this essay, for I think my reader brought up valid and relevant points.

What do we mean, intuitively, when we say freewill? I think most people mean an ability to make an intentional choice unconstrained by factors outside subjectivity. If a choice is merely the outcome of mechanical laws as they apply to the brain, and if the brain exists…

The illusion of reality

Following up on my previous essay summarizing the main points of my book Why Materialism Is Baloney, I'd like to explore here another topic covered much more extensively in the book: the elusive and subtle dichotomy between what we call 'real' and what we call 'illusory.'

We often hear today, particularly in spiritually-oriented circles like non-duality, that 'reality is a kind of illusion.' Strictly speaking, this assertion means exactly nothing: it's like saying that black is a kind of white. After all, reality and illusion are defined as opposites. Therefore, to say that they are the same thing simply renders both terms useless and semantically void. Yet, there may be something important hidden behind such an apparently illogical statement. The people who make the statement aren't interested in being logically-consistent, but in conveying a deep intuition about the nature of what's going on. What are they really trying to say?

Ordinarily, we…

If not materialism, then what?

Continuing on with my series of brief essays on subjects covered more extensively in my latest book, Why Materialism Is Baloney, I'd like today to summarize my main argument. This article, thus, is a kind of overview of the book.

The source of our bleak contemporary worldview is the materialist metaphysics: the notion that the real world exists outside subjective experience, and that experience itself is generated by particular arrangements of matter. This view entails that your entire experience of life unfolds within your head, for it is generated by your brain. The real world is supposedly a realm of pure abstraction, akin to mathematical equations, devoid of color, sound, flavor, fragrance or texture.

At first sight, materialism seems to make good sense. It seems to explain why we cannot control reality. After all, if matter is fundamentally outside mind, it’s natural that we cannot change things merely by wishing them to be different. Moreover, materialism seems to explain w…