Jim Rutt & Terrence Deacon , The Jim Rutt Show

EP 157 Terrence Deacon on Mind's Emergence From Matter

16 May 2022 • 119 min • EN
119 min
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Jim talks to Terrence Deacon about the ideas in his book Incomplete Nature: How Mind Emerged From Matter... Jim talks to Terrence Deacon about the ideas in his book Incomplete Nature: How Mind Emerged From Matter. They discuss the story of zero, integrating absence into physical theories, systems that generate entropy to stave off entropy, the history of emergence & the risk of mysterianism, reframing emergence as removal & constraint, orthograde vs contragrade processes, 3 layers of emergence, the special case of end-directed (teleodynamic) processes, a simple model of autogenesis, contrasting & integrating Shannon, Boltzmann, and Bateson, moving toward sentience, nested teleodynamic processes, feeling as primary to consciousness, rethinking the nervous system in non-computational terms, consciousness as a self-undoing process, inverting the hard problem, and much more. Episode Transcript Incomplete Nature: How Mind Emerged from Matter, by Terrence W. Deacon JRS - EP10 David Krakauer: Complexity Science JRS - Currents 053: Matthew Pirkowski on Grammars of Emergence JRS - Currents 015: Jessica Flack & Melanie Mitchell on Complexity JRS - EP148 Antonio Damasio on Feeling and Knowing Order Out of Chaos: Man's New Dialogue with Nature, by Ilya Prigogine, Isabelle Stengers, & Alvin Toffler The Emergence of Everything: How the World Became Complex, by Harold J. Morowitz JRS - EP105 Christof Koch on Consciousness Professor Terrence W. Deacon has held faculty positions at Harvard University, Harvard Medical School, Boston University, and the University of California, Berkeley. His laboratory research has combined human evolutionary biology and neuroscience, with the aim of investigating the evolution of human cognition. This work extends from cellular-molecular neurobiology and cross-species fetal neural transplantation to the study of semiotic processes underlying animal and human communication, especially language. These topics are explored in his 1997 book, The Symbolic Species: The Coevolution of Language and the Brain. Currently, his theoretical interests have focused on the problem of explaining emergent phenomena, in such unprecedented transitions as the origin of life, the evolution of language, and the generation of conscious experience by brains. His 2012 book, Incomplete Nature: How Mind Emerged from Matter, explores how the interrelationships between thermodynamic, self-organizing, evolutionary, and semiotic processes are implicated in the production of these emergent transitions.

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