tim asks the question here; are plants conscious? cleve baxter did some interesting work some years ago that, though controvercial, showed some interesting results that suggested that plants are keenly aware of thier surroundings, including our thoughts.
this type of suggestion really sets some people off on a tangent whereby they start pushing scientific methods and assumptions as reasons to deny consciousness to anything but humans. this is nothing but arrogance and fear at work. arrogance to think that we are the only ones who can be aware of things and fear that we aren`t.
why deny plants, animals and even rocks forms of consciousness. what purpose does it serve to be so narrow-minded as to think that pine trees don`t know what the fuck is going on.......just because they can`t do much about it.
plants clearly know when they are being attacked. some types of plants will produce acidic substances, called tanins, to thwart the advancement of other plants into thier space or to combat ants or other bugs. the scientist will say that this process is purely chemical in nature, triggered by sensitive cells on certain parts of the plant.
one could reduce human behaviour to the neuro-chemical also.
there are those who say that the human intellect is merely along for the hormonal ride and that the majority of our actions are driven by neuro-transmitter responses to things like frilly hemlines.................
so who`s to say?
i will say this though.........if we are conscious seperate from neurochemistry then plants and animals are too. they just aren`t saying anything.............and that`s a mark of intelligence right there.