Intelligent Design Mind Naturalism Neuroscience

11-year-old conjoined twins have a connected brain, see through each others’ eyes, but have separate minds

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From CBC:

BC’s Hogan twins, featured in the documentary Inseparable, are unique in the world. Joined at the head, their brains are connected by a thalamic bridge which gives them neurological capabilities that researchers are only now beginning to understand. Still, they are like other Canadian eleven-year-olds; they attend school, have a favourite pet and are part of a large, loving family determined to live each day to the fullest.

Krista and Tatiana Hogan share the senses of touch and taste and even control one another’s limbs. Tatiana can see out of both of Krista’s eyes, while Krista can only see out of one of Tatiana’s.

Tatiana controls three arms and a leg, while Krista controls three legs and an arm. They can also switch to self-control of their limbs.

But their personalities are not conjoined; indeed, they are typical for twins:

The girls have very different personalities. Tatiana is outgoing, talkative and high strung while Krista is quieter, more relaxed and loves to tell jokes. More.

Well, these Vernon, British Columbia (Canada) twins (b. 2006) seem to argue against the latest-craze theories of consciousness that parade through the elegant essays in online science magazines.

Also:During one of our many conversations, Felicia Hogan said: “I don’t think anybody’s really going to understand a mother’s feelings when they find out that the children they’re carrying may not ever survive. I think that’s a very unique feeling and it’s really hard to explain the emotional rollercoaster you go through.” Ironically, despite knowing that she was carrying craniopagus twins, Felicia still had a feeling that everything would be ok.” – Judith Pyke

Sobering thought: Had the girls been aborted or left to die, we would never know what they can help us understand about how the human mind really works. We’d be stuck with the elegant essays fronting naturalism.

Note: Episode available in Canada only.

See also: Can information theory help us understand consciousness?

Post-modern science: The illusion of consciousness sees through itself

and

Nature, as defined today, cannot be all there is. Science demonstrates that.

 

18 Replies to “11-year-old conjoined twins have a connected brain, see through each others’ eyes, but have separate minds

  1. 1
    J-Mac says:

    Well, these Vernon, British Columbia (Canada) twins (b. 2006) seem to argue against the latest-craze theories of consciousness that parade through the elegant essays in online science magazines.

    Really???

    How do they argue against the theories of consciousness exactly
    ??? Which ones?

  2. 2
    News says:

    J-Mac at 1, whatever is going on there is not covered by any of the theories.

  3. 3
    EricMH says:

    @J-Mac, If the mind is the brain, then we’d expect two humans sharing the same brain to have the same mind. But, in this case the kids have two distinct minds, so at the very least the mind=brain camp must do more work to explain what is going on here, whereas the mind!=brain camp fully expects this result.

  4. 4
  5. 5
    Dionisio says:

    Is this ‘the hard problem of consciousness’ on n-boosted steroids?

  6. 6
    Origenes says:

    New complex functional brain structures and new complex functional organization of the brain — and zero evolutionary explanation for any of it.

  7. 7
    J-Mac says:

    The conjoined girls have distinct brains; each has her own frontal lobe, lower brain stem and cerebellum. Their brains are connected by thalamic bridge; a piece of tissue that makes them share SOME sensory experiences but not all. The girls have distinct personalities and tastes…

    How does one test whether the girls have the same or separate consciousness?

    http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-bbQZ.....oined.jpeg

  8. 8
    J-Mac says:

    @2 News,

    If consciousness is quantum; operating via quantum entanglement, as one of the theories claims, then it would explain many problems, including conjoint girls.

    Since the law of quantum information conservation says that quantum information can’t be created or destroyed, then it would explain why most people whose major part of the brain is surgically removed, do not suffer any loss of consciousness.

    It would also explain why the conjoint girls have been able to maintain their distinct personalities; likes and dislikes etc. despite the fact that some sensory experiences are shared by both girls…

  9. 9
    EricMH says:

    @J-Mac, so does that mean all prior brains are still living among and within us?

  10. 10
    Dionisio says:

    Origenes @6:
    evo-devo literature is filled with extensive detailed explanations for all that, but we just don’t understand it. It’s time for us to take a biology 101 course to learn the basic principles underlying evolution. Maybe then we could understand what the Neo-Darwinian (2nd way) folks and their “Third Way” comrades are trying to tell us?
    Ok?

    🙂

  11. 11
    Dionisio says:

    EricMH @9:

    Doesn’t the term ‘brain’ refer to the biological structure?
    If that’s the case, then once it’s dead, it’s functionally deactivated and structurally dismantled soon after. Is this correct?
    Isn’t consciousness a nonmaterial entity?
    If that’s the case then it’s not a physicochemical entity, hence it doesn’t depend on anything material. Is this correct?

  12. 12
    J-Mac says:

    @11 Dionisio,

    Exactly! EricMH seems to be confused…

    The brain is just a processor of information (among other)…It is not consciousness itself…

  13. 13
    EricMH says:

    @J-Mac, you say consciousness is the quantum information in entangled particles, which cannot be destroyed, so that’s why destroying a brain does not destroy consciousness.

    The implication is consciousness resides in all the entangled particles, so generations of conscious particles are now embedded in our world and bodies.

    Very pantheistic sort of view, and has a hard time explaining why a certain collection of entangled particles is one consciousness, and why there are many distinct consciousnesses. Rather, on such a view we’d expect there to be no distinct consciousnesses, but only an undifferentiated smear of many consciousnesses, or just one Hindu collective consciousness.

    My view is simpler: consciousness is a non-physical soul that can interact with the physical world thanks to quantum non-determinism. Consciousness is not pinned to any piece of matter, so is not forced to be a smear or a single collective, and can instead fit our common sense perception of many distinct consciousnesses.

  14. 14
    J-Mac says:

    EricMH,

    @J-Mac, you say consciousness is the quantum information in entangled particles, which cannot be destroyed, so that’s why destroying a brain does not destroy consciousness.

    I personally believe that both quantum information (experiences, memories, etc) and the processor/generator of that information (human brain) need to be in-tacked and function together for us to have conscious experience…

    However, Phillip Cunningham-former frequent commentator @UD as well as Steward Hameroff-world authority on consciousness, both believe that quantum information on its own can continue on after death as quantum soul… I have not been convinced by their arguments so far…

    The implication is consciousness resides in all the entangled particles, so generations of conscious particles are now embedded in our world and bodies.

    This is only possible in regards to quantum information and not quantum consciousness IMV…

    However, Depak Chopra believes in something like this but his arguments are less than convincing to me…

    Very pantheistic sort of view, and has a hard time explaining why a certain collection of entangled particles is one consciousness, and why there are many distinct consciousnesses. Rather, on such a view we’d expect there to be no distinct consciousnesses, but only an undifferentiated smear of many consciousnesses, or just one Hindu collective consciousness.

    In quantum mechanics no cloning theorem doesn’t allow for 2 identical copies of exactly the same quantum systems…

    My view is simpler: consciousness is a non-physical soul that can interact with the physical world thanks to quantum non-determinism. Consciousness is not pinned to any piece of matter, so is not forced to be a smear or a single collective, and can instead fit our common sense perception of many distinct consciousnesses.

    Try to prove your point…

  15. 15
    EricMH says:

    @JVL here’s my proof: if consciousness is due to some configuration of matter, then the same configuration in different matter is the same consciousness.
    So, if we have the same configuration (i.e. my consciousness) in two different places, I’d be instantaneously aware of both situations, which is impossible.
    Therefore, consciousness is not a configuration of matter.

    The other materialistic view is that matter itself is conscious, but this view either boils down to the configuration view (false) or there is such a thing as a conscious particle, or the entanglement between multiple particles is consciousness.

    In the latter case, we end up with the consciousness living on through its scattered particles, which appears absurd.

    Human consciousness itself possess non-physical characteristics, such as the ability to contemplate infinity. So it makes sense to say it is a non-physical thing. We know non-physical things can exist, because math exists and it is non-physical.

    As to how a non-physical substance interacts with the physical world, that is a bit of a conundrum (though quantum non-determinism provides a gateway), but it is not a contradiction or an absurdity in the same way that materialistic accounts of consciousness are contradictions or absurdities.

  16. 16
    J-Mac says:

    @15 EricMH,

    Does quantum information possess physical characteristics?

    You have contradicted yourself more than once in one sentence…No offence but further discussion is pointless…

  17. 17
    Dionisio says:

    here’s an interesting report on a most sophisticated information system that we still don’t comprehend well enough [to put it nicely]:

    https://consumer.healthday.com/disabilities-information-11/amputation-news-720/boy-s-double-hand-transplant-changed-his-brain-729122.html

    control systems engineers and computer scientists would be in awe at the sight of such a fascinating system, thinking they are just dreaming.

    but someone out there would assure them that all that is the product of RV+NS+…+T+…?

  18. 18
    Dionisio says:

    more [popular stuff] on brain and consciousness:

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/201.....ss/8679884

    It seems that there is a hole in our scientific picture of the world, what philosopher Joseph Levine called an “explanatory gap”.

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