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Consciousness
#51

Consciousness
(11-05-2019, 11:23 AM)Alan V Wrote:
(11-05-2019, 03:52 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote: Searle argued nothing "convincingly". There are mountains of problems with his Chinese Room, and many serious problems with it, which have been discussed in many places. 
https://www.iep.utm.edu/chineser/

Here is a quote from your article:

Quote:Debate over the Chinese room thought experiment - while generating considerable heat - has proven inconclusive.

This is what you mean when you say that "Searle argued nothing 'convincingly'."

I have no doubt at all that machines can think, i.e. process information and derive answers.  The article you links argues about that point as far as I can tell.

What I said was "I personally think philosopher John Searle already convincingly argued against the idea that consciousness is nothing but a concomitant of information processing with his Chinese Room thought experiment."  Bolding added.

In other words, I think Searle was right that machines will never need subjective states (consciousness, qualia) to think.  Searle's Chinese Room thought experiment never claimed the room couldn't process Chinese accurately.

Other perfectly qualified people undoubtedly disagree, and in fact this whole discussion started with a summary of book from just such a person.  I also added a book report from an expert who seems to agree with Searle.  I was trying to indicate that this is one of the major points of controversy in consciousness studies.

1. No one can tell anyone what they mean when they say something. You really should stop being a thought Nazi. 
2. Processing information is not thinking. It's one of the things that's totally wrong about the Chinese room. A computer (or any other system) can be constructed to "process information" according to a pre-determined set of rules with totally correct outputs. It's not "thinking". A lamp processes information. If it detects energy flow, the bulb lights up. Is it thinking ? It's merely processing inputs by a set of rules. The system in general has absolutely no "knowledge" of anything and is not thinking. Even Eagleman does this ... commits the reification fallacy, when talking about brains and minds and consciousness as a system. A "mind"" is "what brains do" (in total). Nothing else.
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#52

Consciousness
(11-05-2019, 12:19 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote: 1. No one can tell anyone what they mean when they say something. You really should stop being a thought Nazi. 


Irony meter: 9.5, a new record.
"Talk nonsense, but talk your own nonsense, and I'll kiss you for it. To go wrong in one's own way is better than to go right in someone else's. 
F. D.
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#53

Consciousness
(11-05-2019, 12:27 PM)Mark Wrote:
(11-05-2019, 12:19 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote: 1. No one can tell anyone what they mean when they say something. You really should stop being a thought Nazi. 


Irony meter: 9.5, a new record.

So then. You can read minds ? 
Congratulations.
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#54

Consciousness
(11-05-2019, 12:29 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:
(11-05-2019, 12:27 PM)Mark Wrote:
(11-05-2019, 12:19 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote: 1. No one can tell anyone what they mean when they say something. You really should stop being a thought Nazi. 

Irony meter: 9.5, a new record.

So then. You can read minds ? 
Congratulations.

Perhaps Mark said that because he understood what I meant.
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#55

Consciousness
To clarify: My position is that we experience subjective states because we have living brains and nervous systems, not because we can think. I stress the word living because I consider life necessary for consciousness.

This is my personal opinion, based on my thoughts about my reading. Others have different opinions.
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#56

Consciousness
Has anyone ever actually suggested that life is not necessary for consciousness ?
I will file this brilliant information in the "no shit, Sherlock" file.
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#57

Consciousness
(11-04-2019, 12:30 PM)EvieTheAvocado Wrote: What's the explanation of human consciousness? It evolved.

No. If it "evolved" then at some point it was not in the same state as it is now. You logic is totally flawed. If it evolved, then there was a point it didn't exist.

Quote:Same with other animals ... simple explanation. They all just experience the world differently.

You have no evidence that "other animals" (with a few exceptions) are conscious. Is Pete the Paramecia conscious ? LOL
So here we have yet another one who knows nothing about Neuro-science.

Quote:But where did consciousness come from in the first place? At what point did it come into existence during the evolutionary process?
The answer: There's no reason to think it came from anywhere!  No reason to assume that absolute non-consciousness has ever existed. The burden of proof is on those who claim that there's anything other than consciousness of some sort in the universe ... and it's quite a burden indeed, to put it mildly, considering the fact that it's impossible by definition, to have any sort of evidence, scientific or otherwise, of anything besides consciousness/subjective experience of some sort. Pointing out changes in the human brain isn't evidence of non-consciousness ... it's just evidence of solipsism and egocentrism (and of missing the point entirely). Consciousness isn't necessarily just about us and the human brain. Mind and matter always shows up in exactly the same place. It's not just all we know, it's not just all we can know ... it's all any being in the universe can ever know even in principle.

Totally false. Are rocks conscious ? There was a LONG period on Earth where the chemical and molecular makeup was very simple. Is an atom "conscious" ? LMAOn There was no "consciousness" on Earth for billions of years, and you have no evidence there was.

It's totally possible to have a reality in which there is no consciousness, no experience and no "evidence" ... if there are no brains which are operational.
Your woo assertions are totally hysterical. There is no such thing as "mind", ("mind" is nothing except 'what brains do'), and of course they show up in the same place, ... brains are made of matter, and you have NOT ONE example in the known universe where the is consciousness in the absence of brains and the molecular systems that brains are made of.
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#58

Consciousness
(11-05-2019, 09:57 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote: Has anyone ever actually suggested that life is not necessary for consciousness ?

Yes.  Many people think strong AI is a real possibility, including S. A. Graziano, a professor of neuroscience at Princeton University, whose book I discussed in my first post.

Back in my post #22 I discussed why I thought life was essential.

I look forward to your positive contributions to this discussion.
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#59

Consciousness
(11-04-2019, 02:43 PM)Alan V Wrote: Evie,

I don't know how you can assert that your position is obvious and that other positions are nonsense if scientists are not on your side.

I've not asserted that my position is obvious and that other positions are nonsense ... I've explained that it's obvious that we can't have evidence of something beyond our experience ... as that's a logical impossibility! Of course it's obvious that what is logically impossible to be done can't be done ... and that supports my view.

Of course it's possible that most of reality is non-mental ... I'm just saying that there's no evidence of it.

And ... it doesn't matter that most (not all, most) scientists are not on my side when we're dealing with questions beyond science anyway. Scientists can obviously collect interesting findings and evidence and that is, of course, what science is good at ... but that doesn't mean that scientists can't draw false conclusions from those findings. Science isn't interested in what it can't test ... but just because you can't test something doesn't mean it doesn't exist.

And it certainly is obvious that scientists couldn't have evidence of anything if they couldn't experience anything because evidence is empirical and empiricism is experience-based. It's one thing to collect evidence of our experience of reality ... but it's quite another thing to say that there's something else beyond it when we can't possibly have evidence of that. Like I said, this is true by definition.

Obviously, science is very useful and objective ... but it will never trump logic or mathematics and it is nonsense to conclude that there's something out there beyond what we can experience ... when we never have and never can experience anything other than what we can experience! I'm not saying that there isn't anything out there ... I'm saying that the conclusion is a non-sequitur.

Just because you can collect valid and interesting evidence doesn't mean that you can conclude that a square circle exists (it doesn't mean that you can conclude that you can experience the non-experiencable) ....

... if science ever concluded that 'square circles' existed ... they'd only do it by redefining the whole concept of what a square circle is to make it something other than a logical impossibility, obviously. It's the same with when atoms were 'split'. Atoms used to mean something that, by definition, can't be split. How did scientists split them? By splitting something that they th ought was unsplittable ... not by actually splitting something that was actually unsplittable, obviously. So science never split them they split something else under the same name and that is now what we primarily mean by 'atom'. in the same way, scientists can never make square circles ... they can only make something else, call it a square circle, and say they've done it. This is how science works. Science is amazing but it doesn't have magic powers .... logical impossibilities can't exist.
My Argument Against Free Will Wrote:(1) Ultimately, to control your actions you have to originate your original nature.

(2) But you can't originate your original nature—it's already there.

(3) So, ultimately, you can't control your actions.
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#60

Consciousness
(11-04-2019, 02:43 PM)Alan V Wrote: You are thinking of consciousness as a primal substance rather than as a process of living brains, and I see no evidence to support that position.

I have not said that it's a primal substance rather than a process in living brains. We know it's a process in living brains.

You say I have no evidence that it exists as a primal substance ... but neither you nor any other being in the entire universe possibly can have evidence of anything other than mental activity ... so I'm just being parsimonious here. Why assume there's non-mental stuff when we can't ever possibly have evidence of it? Evidence requires observation which requires mental activity ... and that applies by definiton ... whether youi're you, me, a scientist or a highly advanced alien race in another galaxy.


We have evidence of the mental but we don't and can't have evidence of the non-mental ... so why assume it exists ... that's the point. It's an unsupported and unsupportable belief.

I've never been religious and never believed in a soul or a mind apart from a body ... and I still don't believe that minds exist apart from physical stuff. But most of my life I believed that conciousness was simply in brains ... but why did I believe that? Simply because I hadn't thought about consciousness enough. I just assumed that consciousness had to be exactly like human consciousness, or very similar, and I just assumed that the rest of the universe was non-conscious.

Sometimes the most logical position is intuitively 'weird' or 'crazy' and hardly anyone believes it ... although panpsychism has been on the rise in the last 10 years or so.

https://bigthink.com/philip-perry/the-un...ists-state

Quote:U.K. physicist Sir Roger Penrose is yet another supporter of panpsychism. Penrose in the 80's proposed that consciousness is present at the quantum level and resides in the synapses of the brain. He is famous for linking consciousness with some of the goings on in quantum mechanics.

It's not as if all scientists aren't on my side. Panpsychism may be in the minority ... but it is on the rise even within the scientific field.

But "Scientists disagree with you" isn't actually an argument so I don't know why you bothered to use it. It's pointless if they're drawing irrelevant conclusions from their findings. If X is untestable by science then Y finding isn't relevant to it ... but that doesn't stop some scientists saying otherwise. Sure, the evidence that is found is objective but, like I said, that doesn't mean that scientists, who are human after all, can't draw irrelevant conclusions from that evidence.
My Argument Against Free Will Wrote:(1) Ultimately, to control your actions you have to originate your original nature.

(2) But you can't originate your original nature—it's already there.

(3) So, ultimately, you can't control your actions.
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#61

Consciousness
(11-05-2019, 10:07 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:
(11-04-2019, 12:30 PM)EvieTheAvocado Wrote: What's the explanation of human consciousness? It evolved.

No. If it "evolved" then at some point it was not in the same state as it is now. You logic is totally flawed. If it evolved, then there was a point it didn't exist.

Quote:Same with other animals ... simple explanation. They all just experience the world differently.

You have no evidence that "other animals" (with a few exceptions) are conscious. Is Pete the Paramecia conscious ? LOL
So here we have yet another one who knows nothing about Neuro-science.

Quote:But where did consciousness come from in the first place? At what point did it come into existence during the evolutionary process?
The answer: There's no reason to think it came from anywhere!  No reason to assume that absolute non-consciousness has ever existed. The burden of proof is on those who claim that there's anything other than consciousness of some sort in the universe ... and it's quite a burden indeed, to put it mildly, considering the fact that it's impossible by definition, to have any sort of evidence, scientific or otherwise, of anything besides consciousness/subjective experience of some sort. Pointing out changes in the human brain isn't evidence of non-consciousness ... it's just evidence of solipsism and egocentrism (and of missing the point entirely). Consciousness isn't necessarily just about us and the human brain. Mind and matter always shows up in exactly the same place. It's not just all we know, it's not just all we can know ... it's all any being in the universe can ever know even in principle.

Totally false. Are rocks conscious ? There was a LONG period on Earth where the chemical and molecular makeup was very simple. Is an atom "conscious" ? LMAOn There was no "consciousness" on Earth for billions of years, and you have no evidence there was.

It's totally possible to have a reality in which there is no consciousness, no experience and no "evidence" ... if there are no brains which are operational.
Your woo assertions are totally hysterical. There is no such thing as "mind", ("mind" is nothing except 'what brains do'), and of course they show up in the same place, ... brains are made of matter, and you have NOT ONE example in the known universe where the is consciousness in the absence of brains and the molecular systems that brains are made of.

I'm no rocket scientist but isn't consciousness just another word for awareness? As in an in built survival mechanism? Obviously there are and have been differing levels of awareness, which does actually point to it being an evolutionary trait.


To me it's pretty straight forward. We're here, and we are aware we're here. Before we were here we were not aware we weren't here.
He loves me?  Facepalm
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#62

Consciousness
(11-06-2019, 12:07 PM)EvieTheAvocado Wrote: https://bigthink.com/philip-perry/the-un...ists-state

Quote:U.K. physicist Sir Roger Penrose is yet another supporter of panpsychism. Penrose in the 80's proposed that consciousness is present at the quantum level and resides in the synapses of the brain. He is famous for linking consciousness with some of the goings on in quantum mechanics.

It's not as if all scientists aren't on my side. Panpsychism may be in the minority ... but it is on the rise even within the scientific field.

But "Scientists disagree with you" isn't actually an argument so I don't know why you bothered to use it. It's pointless if they're drawing irrelevant conclusions from their findings. If X is untestable by science then Y finding isn't relevant to it ... but that doesn't stop some scientists saying otherwise. Sure, the evidence that is found is objective but, like I said, that doesn't mean that scientists, who are human after all, can't draw irrelevant conclusions from that evidence.

I "bothered to use it" because I am curious about the warrant for your perspectives, which seem like unwarranted and uneconomical speculations otherwise.  With the Penrose quote, you have begun to offer a warrant.  Would you care to elaborate on how you think quantum mechanics pertains to consciousness?
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#63

Consciousness
(11-05-2019, 10:07 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:
(11-04-2019, 12:30 PM)EvieTheAvocado Wrote: What's the explanation of human consciousness? It evolved.

No. If it "evolved" then at some point it was not in the same state as it is now. You logic is totally flawed. If it evolved, then there was a point it didn't exist.

This makes zero sense. I say in that post that human consciousness evolved but consciousness altogether did not.

OBVIOUSLY there was a point that human consciousness didn't exist. In fact ... I've said so on more than one occasion. I never said that human consciousness is all that exists. In fact I've said the opposite on more than one occasion.

Are people like you, who provide such poor responses, really this fucking illiterate and unable to read anything I post correctly or are you purposefully strawmanning me because you can't take on my arguments in good faith? That's the real question.

Getting awfully tired of clearly stating X and spelling everything out thoroughly and being told time and time again that I said something else that I clearly didn't say. I wouldn't mind if it was just on the odd occasion but it's like so many people can't even confront one of my basic points without misrepresenting it all together. It's like, why even communicate with folks when they appear to be speaking a whole other language? It's not as if what I'm spelling out is even that complicated or anything.
My Argument Against Free Will Wrote:(1) Ultimately, to control your actions you have to originate your original nature.

(2) But you can't originate your original nature—it's already there.

(3) So, ultimately, you can't control your actions.
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#64

Consciousness
(11-05-2019, 10:07 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote: You have no evidence that "other animals" (with a few exceptions) are conscious.

Bullshit. It's a mere extrapolation by analogy. You have no evidence that animals are only conscious in a few cases. I used to think the same too (until a couple of years ago I thought that only mammals were conscious) but it was just based on the assumption that most things aren't conscious and consciousness only emerges when brains get complex enough .... and I merely hadn't thought the topic through enough.

You're merely taking human consciousness and saying that anything similar enough to that is conscious and anything that isn't similar enough to that isn't. It's exactly as egocentric and solipsistic as I said it was. You have no evidence of any kind of total non-consciousness. Get your fat head around the fact that evidence is experience-based and it is therefore utterly impossible to have any evidence of anything else. It's really not that complicated once you think about it.

When somebody doesn't admit the truth of a tautology then they're really beyond hope in a discussion. It should be the minimum requirement in a disagreement that somebody at least accepts that X is X. If you can't accept that something that is experience-based is experience-based then you may as well be spouting gibberish. Kindly fuck off if you'll disagree for the sake of it even when I'm saying that X is X. It's either a case of people entering a discussion in bad faith or suffering from so much cognitive dissonance that they'll continue to disagree even when their opponent is saying that wet water is wet.
My Argument Against Free Will Wrote:(1) Ultimately, to control your actions you have to originate your original nature.

(2) But you can't originate your original nature—it's already there.

(3) So, ultimately, you can't control your actions.
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#65

Consciousness
(11-06-2019, 12:51 PM)EvieTheAvocado Wrote:
(11-05-2019, 10:07 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:
(11-04-2019, 12:30 PM)EvieTheAvocado Wrote: What's the explanation of human consciousness? It evolved.

No. If it "evolved" then at some point it was not in the same state as it is now. You logic is totally flawed. If it evolved, thenthere was a point it didn't exist.

This makes zero sense. I say in that post that human consciousness evolved but consciousness altogether did not.

OBVIOUSLY there was a point that human consciousness didn't exist. In fact ... I've said so on more than one occasion. I never said that human consciousness is all that exists. In fact I've said the opposite on more than one occasion.

Are people like you, who provide such poor responses, really this fucking illiterate and unable to read anything I post correctly or are you purposefully strawmanning me because you can't take on my arguments in good faith? That's the real question.

Getting awfully tired of clearly stating X and spelling everything out thoroughly and being told time and time again that I said something else that I clearly didn't say. I wouldn't mind if it was just on the odd occasion but it's like so many people can't even confront one of my basic points without misrepresenting it all together. It's like, why even communicate with folks when they appear to be speaking a whole other language? It's not as if what I'm spelling out is even that complicated or anything.

He didn't misrepresent you, douche bag, he said that if it evolved then at some point it existed in a different state, which is true, and is implied by what you wrote.  His conclusion that it then therefore must have not existed at some point is also true. IF he was referring to human consciousness specifically. There is an ambiguity here in that it is not clear whether he and you were referring to consciousness generally, or human consciousness specifically, as he doesn't clearly state as much, and you both are unclear on that point, but assuming that he is referring to human consciousness alone is your own assumption and not a part of what he said.  He didn't say you said something that you didn't say. If he was in fact referring to human consciousness alone, then everything he said was true, and your complaint is total bollocks. Your complaint would only be valid IF he was referring to consciousness generally, but if that were the case, then while his argument would be an example of an invalid non sequitur, you would be misrepresenting HIM by claiming that you understood him to be referring to human consciousness specifically (which would clearly be a lie on your part). Your complaint against him depends necessarily upon you equivocating by first claiming that he was referring to human consciousness alone, and then complaining that his argument was false and a misrepresentation of your argument about consciousness generally. As often as you whine about equivocation, you should be more sensitive to your own equivocations. Even if you hadn't equivocated, he was clearly drawing his own conclusions based upon his own understanding of what evolved means, not misrepresenting you, but rather misrepresenting the implications of evolution. So, you are accusing him of stating that you said something you didn't, by stating that he said something that he clearly didn't, in yet another example of your moronic incompetence and hypocrisy.  This is exactly what you did to me, and added a negative rep point to add insult to injury.  You are a constant example of the pot calling the kettle black.

You are truly incompetent.  You advertise that you're hot shit about philosophy but your work is truly freshman level.  You are really bad at it.

If being misrepresented bothers you this much, maybe you should stop doing it to other people.
[Image: signature%20The-Ascension-of-Iweko.jpg]
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#66

Consciousness
(11-05-2019, 03:52 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote: Searle argued nothing "convincingly". There are mountains of problems with his Chinese Room, and many serious problems with it, which 
have been discussed in many places. 
https://www.iep.utm.edu/chineser/

I haven't read the thread but for me, the single thing that Searle's thought experiment demonstrates is that you can only have strong AI if it is embodied in an environment. It could be a physical environment or a virtual one, but the agent has to be part of a larger system that it interacts within as part of a sensori-motor loop.

The monolingual English speaker inside the Chinese room is not embodied in a Chinese speaking environment and therefore the text has no meaning because it cannot ultimately be associated with the agent's needs and drives (e.g. maintaining homoeostasis)
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#67

Consciousness
(11-05-2019, 12:19 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote: 2. Processing information is not thinking. It's one of the things that's totally wrong about the Chinese room. A computer (or any other system) can be constructed to "process information" according to a pre-determined set of rules with totally correct outputs. It's not "thinking".

Depends what you mean by processing information and what you mean by thinking.

(11-05-2019, 12:19 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote: A lamp processes information. If it detects energy flow, the bulb lights up. Is it thinking ? It's merely processing inputs by a set of rules. The system in general has absolutely no "knowledge" of anything and is not thinking.

A lamp does not detect energy flow. Light is emitted as a result of the energy flow. Much like how the flow of energy through brains results in thinking to occur.
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#68

Consciousness
(11-06-2019, 01:38 PM)Mathilda Wrote:
(11-05-2019, 12:19 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote: 2. Processing information is not thinking. It's one of the things that's totally wrong about the Chinese room. A computer (or any other system) can be constructed to "process information" according to a pre-determined set of rules with totally correct outputs. It's not "thinking".

Depends what you mean by processing information and what you mean by thinking.

Before Bucky's response, I defined "thinking" to try to avoid that confusion:

(11-05-2019, 11:23 AM)Alan V Wrote: I have no doubt at all that machines can think, i.e. process information and derive answers.  The article you link argues about that point as far as I can tell.

I was hoping Bucky would point out where in his article they addressed Searle's argument in some other sense of the word "thinking", because I missed it if they did.

Earlier I had already discussed why I thought the mere processing of information wouldn't necessarily require consciousness.

For me, Searle's Chinese Room thought experiment pointed out that semantics are different than syntax. Semantics seem to require biology.
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#69

Consciousness
There seem to be two possible positions here if one is asserting that conscious things and non-conscious things are ontologically different.

First, that there is now or has existed things that are not conscious. If one is asserting that consciousness is ontologically different than non-consciousness, that consciousness is a different kind of thing, and that non-consciousness has at some point existed, then one is asserting a form of dualism.

The second is that non-consciousness doesn't and has not existed, ever. This would be asserting a form of monism.

The problem comes in that claiming that the universe is monistic, and claiming that the materialist is, in effect, asserting a form of dualism, appears to be a misrepresentation of the materialist position. Materialism is a monistic philosophical position. So the disagreement seems to lie somewhere in our understanding of what we are referring to by the term "consciousness." I went through similar discussions with Little Rik on AF. If all that panpsychism is asserting is ontological monism, then it's not in disagreement with materialism. But if panpsychism is disagreeing by stating that there is a distinction between conscious and non-conscious things, then the panpsychist is drawing upon a distinction he claims doesn't exist, the distinction between conscious and non-conscious things, and would, therefore, be guilty of the fallacy of the stolen concept.

Regardless, it seems this all boils down to what one means and is referring to by the term "consciousness," and is likely a result of one side or the other equivocating.

In my arguments with Little Rik, I took the position that it was he who was equivocating. I may or may not take that position here.
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#70

Consciousness
(11-06-2019, 02:57 PM)Dānu Wrote: There seem to be two possible positions here if one is asserting that conscious things and non-conscious things are ontologically different.

First, that there are now or have existed things that are not conscious.  If one is asserting that consciousness is ontologically different than non-consciousness, that consciousness is a different kind of thing, and that non-consciousness has at some point existed, then one is asserting a form of dualism.

The second is that non-consciousness doesn't and has not existed, ever.  This would be asserting a form of monism.

The problem comes in that claiming that the universe is monistic, and claiming that the materialist is, in effect, asserting a form of dualism, appears to be a misrepresentation of the materialist position.  Materialism is a monistic philosophical position.  So the disagreement seems to lie somewhere in our understanding of what we are referring to by the term "consciousness."  I went through similar discussions with Little Rik on AF.  If all that panpsychism is asserting is ontological monism, then it's not in disagreement with materialism.  But if panpsychism is disagreeing by stating that there is a distinction between conscious and non-conscious things, then the panpsychist is drawing upon a distinction he claims doesn't exist, the distinction between conscious and non-conscious things, and would, therefore, be guilty of the fallacy of the stolen concept.

Regardless, it seems this all boils down to what one means and is referring to by the term "consciousness," and is likely a result of one side or the other equivocating.

In my arguments with Little Rik, I took the position that it was he who was equivocating.  I may or may not take that position here.

I agree that asserting any kind of dualism is a misrepresentation of materialism.

I have often repeated neuroscientist Allan Hobson's idea on this issue, which he refers to as "dual-aspect monism": "The mind is the subjective experience of possessing an objective brain."  In other words, there is no reason to reify consciousness as a separate substance if one considers it to be within the realm of materialistic possibilities to create virtual representations of realities.  Such representations are presented to the body, not to consciousness per se as a separate entity.  The body is conscious of virtual representations, so consciousness is a process or function of a living body with a brain and nervous system.

Emergent materialism asserts that such completely new properties and functions as life and consciousness can emerge with new and evolved combinations of materials.

So a living creature with consciousness can be ontologically different than a rock without defining that difference as a new kind of substance in the universe.  All of the atoms in our bodies are still lifeless even while we possess life, since life emerges at a certain evolved level of complexity and interaction.  Similarly with consciousness.
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#71

Consciousness
(11-06-2019, 03:25 PM)Alan V Wrote: I agree that asserting any kind of dualism is a misrepresentation of materialism.

I have often repeated neuroscientist Allan Hobson's idea on this issue, which he refers to as "dual-aspect monism": "The mind is the subjective experience of possessing an objective brain."  In other words, there is no reason to reify consciousness as a separate substance if one considers it to be within the realm of materialistic possibilities to create virtual representations of realities.  Such representations are presented to the body, not to consciousness per se as a separate entity.  The body is conscious of virtual representations, so consciousness is a process or function of a living body with a brain and nervous system.

Emergent materialism asserts that such completely new properties and functions as life and consciousness can emerge with new and evolved combinations of materials.

So a living creature with consciousness can be ontologically different than a rock without defining that difference as a new kind of substance in the universe.  All of the atoms in our bodies are still lifeless even while we possess life, since life emerges at a certain evolved level of complexity and interaction.  Similarly with consciousness.


This all makes perfect sense.  To worry about dualism where the putative alternative to the material is an emergent phenomenon of an emergent phenomenon of the material is a kind of category error.  The reason the mistake is compelling is that it is beings -forms of life possessing some critical level of consciousness- which hold up material phenomena in one hand and those of consciousness in the other (figurative) hand and note that both are phenomena from its perspective.  True enough.  But our perspective is not impartial.  Our perspective is precisely that of biological beings with enriched cognitive processing.  The existence of our perspective does not render the phenomena of consciousness as co-equally basic with material objects.
"Talk nonsense, but talk your own nonsense, and I'll kiss you for it. To go wrong in one's own way is better than to go right in someone else's. 
F. D.
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#72

Consciousness
(11-06-2019, 12:51 PM)EvieTheAvocado Wrote: This makes zero sense. I say in that post that human consciousness evolved but consciousness altogether did not.

You have not one shred of evidence for that assertion.
It may make no sense to you, but in fact, you have no evidence for what you post. You actually contradicted yourself. You say consciousness 'evolved". FROM WHAT ? You also said that matter and consciousness always exist together.

Quote:OBVIOUSLY there was a point that human consciousness didn't exist. In fact ... I've said so on more than one occasion. I never said that human consciousness is all that exists. In fact I've said the opposite on more than one occasion.

You just contradicted yourself AGAIN. You said "More complex consciousness evolved from more simple consciousness .... and there's no reason to think that the simplest forms of consciousness developed from total non-consciousness when total non-consciousness is something that (a) we have no evidence of even existing (b) we can't even distinguish from the simplest forms of consciousness from our third-person perspective."

Are you on drugs ?

Quote:Are people like you, who provide such poor responses, really this fucking illiterate and unable to read anything I post correctly or are you purposefully strawmanning me because you can't take on my arguments in good faith? That's the real question.

No dear. Your self-contradictory bullshit is why so many have your pathetic posts on ignore. You can't keep track of the crap you post.

Quote:Getting awfully tired of clearly stating X and spelling everything out thoroughly and being told time and time again that I said something else that I clearly didn't say. I wouldn't mind if it was just on the odd occasion but it's like so many people can't even confront one of my basic points without misrepresenting it all together. It's like, why even communicate with folks when they appear to be speaking a whole other language? It's not as if what I'm spelling out is even that complicated or anything.

Poor baby. We just don't appreciate your brilliance. 
OMG. What a fucking baby.
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#73

Consciousness
(11-06-2019, 12:13 PM)NorthernBen Wrote:
(11-05-2019, 10:07 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:
(11-04-2019, 12:30 PM)EvieTheAvocado Wrote: What's the explanation of human consciousness? It evolved.

No. If it "evolved" then at some point it was not in the same state as it is now. You logic is totally flawed. If it evolved, then there was a point it didn't exist.

Quote:Same with other animals ... simple explanation. They all just experience the world differently.

You have no evidence that "other animals" (with a few exceptions) are conscious. Is Pete the Paramecia conscious ? LOL
So here we have yet another one who knows nothing about Neuro-science.

Quote:But where did consciousness come from in the first place? At what point did it come into existence during the evolutionary process?
The answer: There's no reason to think it came from anywhere!  No reason to assume that absolute non-consciousness has ever existed. The burden of proof is on those who claim that there's anything other than consciousness of some sort in the universe ... and it's quite a burden indeed, to put it mildly, considering the fact that it's impossible by definition, to have any sort of evidence, scientific or otherwise, of anything besides consciousness/subjective experience of some sort. Pointing out changes in the human brain isn't evidence of non-consciousness ... it's just evidence of solipsism and egocentrism (and of missing the point entirely). Consciousness isn't necessarily just about us and the human brain. Mind and matter always shows up in exactly the same place. It's not just all we know, it's not just all we can know ... it's all any being in the universe can ever know even in principle.

Totally false. Are rocks conscious ? There was a LONG period on Earth where the chemical and molecular makeup was very simple. Is an atom "conscious" ? LMAOn There was no "consciousness" on Earth for billions of years, and you have no evidence there was.

It's totally possible to have a reality in which there is no consciousness, no experience and no "evidence" ... if there are no brains which are operational.
Your woo assertions are totally hysterical. There is no such thing as "mind", ("mind" is nothing except 'what brains do'), and of course they show up in the same place, ... brains are made of matter, and you have NOT ONE example in the known universe where the is consciousness in the absence of brains and the molecular systems that brains are made of.

I'm no rocket scientist but isn't consciousness just another word for awareness? As in an in built survival mechanism? Obviously there are and have been differing levels of awareness, which does actually point to it being an evolutionary trait.


To me it's pretty straight forward. We're here, and we are aware we're here. Before we were here we were not aware we weren't here.

No it isn't. Awareness (the ability to detect) of the environment in which an animal exists is not (self)-consciousness.
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#74

Consciousness
(11-06-2019, 08:14 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote: No it isn't. Awareness (the ability to detect) of the environment in which an animal exists is not (self)-consciousness.

So what is it then if it's not awareness? Be specific.
He loves me?  Facepalm
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#75

Consciousness
(11-06-2019, 09:35 PM)NorthernBen Wrote:
(11-06-2019, 08:14 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote: No it isn't. Awareness (the ability to detect) of the environment in which an animal exists is not (self)-consciousness.

So what is it then if it's not awareness? Be specific.

From what I have read, awareness is considered synonymous with consciousness.  Self-consciousness is a step above that and mere attention a step below.  So Bucky is probably thinking of attention.

This is why I need to clarify definitions after I find the time to look into them a bit more. Too many definitions in consciousness studies are rather fuzzy, as is fitting for the subject I suppose.
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