Reply to JT Eberhard
JT: To argue that the existence of intention establishes the existence of god is an argument from ignorance, especially given the vast amount we do understand about the brain. All that we know about states of mind has been revealed to us by the application of experiments dealing with the tangible aspects of cognizance. Conversely, it seem the argument of consciousness could once have been called the argument from emotion, before science granted us an explanation of the mechanisms that caused us to be emotional.
VR: Here is my question. Could any amount of brain information be logically sufficient for the existence of an intentional state, such that, given this pile of non-intentional information, a truth about the intentional state is logically entailed? It seems to be a problem very similar from the problem of going from descriptive to normative in, say, an ethical context. The fact we have scientific information bearing on the subject doesn't automatically solve the problem. For example, if I want to know if I ought to fire off a gun right now, there are some descriptive scientific facts about what firing off that gun is going to do that will, given certain moral values
justify the claim that I ought not to fire the gun. But does it complete the argument against shooting the gun? No. Is it an argument from ignorance to suggest that no matter how much scientific information about gun-shooting we gather, we are not going to logically reach the conclusion that shooting the gun is wrong? No.
In general, although a lot of people use the "argument from ignorance" charge against various theistic arguments (and in the case of my argument from reason I don't go directly to God; there are several intervening steps), I have never seen a good analysis of what a fallacious argument from ignorance is. There is maybe a paradigm case or two out there, but it is as if people think they can say phrase and expect the opposing argument to just go away. It doesn't work that way.