Iqra_hussain216
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If Dawkins is a hard materialist, how is it possible that he thinks that consciousness is something that is yet to be proved by neuroscientists to disprove the idea of a soul when consciousness isn’t an actual physical thing?
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Joe312
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I don't really understand your question.
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Sim Whitbourn
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In my understanding, a hard materialist such as Dawkins would argue that consciousness as a neurological phenomenon can be derived from wholly material things. In theory, we are able to reduce consciousness down to a collection of neurological processes that we, as humans, perceive as a kind of 'state'. Thing of it like a town - it is made up of a great number of houses, vehicles, people, public buildings etc, yet we reduce all these down to just the word 'town'. The town itself exists but in a reducable state. Similarly, Dawkins would think of consciousness as having this 'reducable' quality. Those that claim that the soul is what brings us consciousness would argue that it, in contrast, is 'irreducable', where the soul itself is the immaterial fundamental part. Descartes, for example, sees the soul/mind as being irreducable while our physical body is very much reduable. To sum it up, Dawkins is saying that, if a full picture of consciousness can be built up from purely material entities such as neurons, the brain, etc, then there is no place for the soul. And he would still be a materialist, as he is not bringing in any fundamental, immaterial entities.
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