Certain people of a ‘scientific’ and ‘atheistic’ bent posit that the human being (i.e. the human body, including the mind – which is merely activity in the brain) is a kind of mechanism or machine or gene receptacle, and the brain is a ‘box of wires’. To me, this raises various questions.
1. Why is the human mechanism better or more deserving of respect than any other mechanism … a lawnmower, say, or, a cat?
2. Whence do concepts such as human dignity, human rights, personal morality, right and wrong, good and evil arise, and what is their justification?
3. Why should anyone be held responsible for their actions, given that these are caused by chemical reactions in the brain, and chemicals have no sense of right and wrong?
4. Why do you have the concept of a quasi-separate ‘I’, as in ‘my body’, if you are just your body?
5. How can volition be anything other than an illusion?
6. Why should feelings, emotions, etc. have any importance if they are mere artefacts of chemical reactions?
I ask because I want to know.