From philosopher Laura Ruggles at Aeon:
What does it even mean to say that a mallow can learn and remember the location of the sunrise? The idea that plants can behave intelligently, let alone learn or form memories, was a fringe notion until quite recently. Memories are thought to be so fundamentally cognitive that some theorists argue that they’re a necessary and sufficient marker of whether an organism can do the most basic kinds of thinking. Surely memory requires a brain, and plants lack even the rudimentary nervous systems of bugs and worms.
However, over the past decade or so this view has been forcefully challenged. The mallow isn’t an anomaly. Plants are not simply organic, passive automata. We now know that they can sense and integrate information about dozens of different environmental variables, and that they use this knowledge to guide flexible, adaptive behaviour.
For example, plants can recognise whether nearby plants are kin or unrelated, and adjust their foraging strategies accordingly.
Plants are a diverse and flexible group of organisms whose extraordinary capacities we are only just beginning to understand. Once we expand the vista of our curiosity beyond animal and even plant kingdoms – to look at fungi, bacteria, protozoa – we might be surprised to find that many of these organisms share many of the same basic behavioural strategies and principles as us, including the capacity for kinds of learning and memory. More.
As noted here earlier, there is no tree of intelligence.
And if intelligence does not even require a brain, that is another blow to materialism, and probably to any kind of naturalism. But then we are told that consciousness is an illusion and information remains unintegrated into science. From there, we are assured, we shall make great progress… as if.
See also: How plants see, hear, smell, and respond without animal sense organs
From the ivied halls: Attack on human “privilege” in relation to plant life
Does intelligence depend on a specific type of brain?
6 Replies to “Plant studies: Intelligence does not require a brain or nervous system”
as far as i know,some philosophers like George Berkeley didn’t believe matter can be exist!
The ultimate source of all intelligence is the Creator of all biological systems.
Other opinions are just gossiping chat for pop tabloids.
If someone has a problem with that, too bad.
If somebody wants to discuss this, send them my way.
But you may warn them that I don’t ask ‘honest’ questions, whatever that means, according to a distinguished biochemistry professor in this site.
They might run for the door soon after we start a discussion, as that professor did.
That’s fine with me.
If these plants exhibit “Intelligence”, then “intelligence” cannot be what’s behind design, because these plants cannot design organisms. The requisite knowledge is not present there, in physical form.
All of that limited flexible, adapted behavior represents transformations that occur when the limited requisite knowledge is present there, in material form.
On the other hand, people can design organism because all of the requisite knowledge is present there, in material form.
Biological systems -including plants- are not intelligent, but point to the superior intelligence of their designer.
Maybe I didn’t get the memo, but as far as I’m aware of, nobody has designed a biological organism from scratch.
That’s too far beyond our knowledge.
They have used existing cells and modified their internal parts or replaced them. Nothing from scratch.
The components and the functionality are borrowed from existing entities.
They have just changed them.
Since we are intelligent agents that exhibit free will and can choose, then why haven’t we created a biological organism from scratch? Are we not intelligent agents?
What’s the crucial difference between human beings and a designer that can create an organism from scratch?