Up@dawn 2.0

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Backup Quiz Oct.20/21

1. Pascal thought if you gamble on god and lose, "you lose ______." LH 72

2. (T/F) By limiting his "wager" to a  choice between either Christian theism or atheism, says Nigel, Pascal excludes too many other possible bets. LH 75

3. Those who agree with Descartes that mind and body, the mental and physical, represent metaphysically distinct and separate substances are called what? P 138

(OR, what is the most serious difficulty facing those who defend this view? P 141)

4. The view that everything has a mind of some sort is called what? P 141

5. Does Nigel think parallelism, occasionalism, or epiphenomenalism are plausible? P 143

6. Conscious experiences of how it feels or what it is like, personally, to be in a particular state of mind are called what?

BONUS: What religious sect did Pascal convert to in his youth, and what were its main tenets?

BONUS+: What was Pascal's attitude towards the cosmic scale of the universe? (How did he say it made him feel?)

1. Do you agree that, contrary to Pascal, most nonreligious people would consider it a huge sacrifice to devote their lives to religion? Why?

2. Is the choice between God and no-god 50/50, like a coin toss? How would you calculate the odds? At what point in the calculation do you think it becomes prudent to bet on God? Or do you reject this entire approach? Why?

3. Do you believe in ghosts, immaterial/immortal spirits, or other non-physical entities? Are you one yourself? If so, do you believe this on the basis of evidence or of desire? If not, why not? Either way, have you come to terms with your mortality? Explain.

4. Why do you think the evolution of mind so closely parallels that of the brain? (What's the best explanation?)

5. What do you think of the idea that the apparent link between mind and body is pre-arranged by God, conceived as a master clock-winder? How about the idea that mental events are caused by physical events, but not vice versa?

6. If neuroscientists ever succeed in mapping the brain and modeling the causal neurological events correlated with thinking, will that solve the mystery of consciousness? Is there a gap between the explanation and the experience of pain, pleasure, happiness, etc.?

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