On Jul 3, 10:07 am, Torgny Tholerus <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
> Imagine that we have a second Universe, that looks exactly the same as
> the materialistic parts of our Universe. We may call this second
> Universe B-Universe. (Our Universe is A-Universe.)
> This B-Universe looks exactly the same as A-Universe. Where there is a
> hydrogen atom in A-Universe, there will also be a hydrogen atom in
> B-Universe, and everywhere that there is an oxygen atom in A-Universe,
> there will be an oxygen atom i B-universe. The only difference between
> A-Universe and B-Universe is that B-Universe is totally free from
> consciousness, feelings, minds, souls, and all that kind of stuff. The
> only things that exist in B-Universe are atoms reacting with eachother.
> All objects in B-Universe behave in exactly the same way as the objects
> in A-Universe.
> The objects in B-Universe produces the same kind of sounds as we produce
> in A-Universe, and the objects in B-Universe pushes the same buttons on
> their computers as we do in our A-Universe.
> Is B-Universe possible?
In my opinion, for B-universe to be particle-for-particle identical to
A-universe yet not contain consciousness/feelings/minds/souls it
requires that consciousness as it appears in A-universe is due to some
manner of dualism, that is to say, consciousness in A-universe must
not be an innate feature of the material, mathematical or
informational structures that correspond to observers.
> If we interview an object in B-Universe, what will that object answer,
> if we ask it: "Are you conscious?"?
I assume you are looking for people who will say B-universe is
possible, and that the non-conscious observers will answer identically
to those in A-universe, thereby proving that consciousness is an
unneeded theory to be done away with by Occam's razor. In any case if
the atoms interact identically in both universes the B-universe
occupants will answer the same way as A-universe observers, but I
don't think it is possible for B-universe occupants to be non-
conscious. Here is why:
Note that you did not say "thought" was non-existent in B-universe, I
think one can construct complex conscious awareness to the collection
of a large number of simultaneous thoughts. Let me define the most
basic thought as an excited/firing neuron which is increasing the
likelihood of neighboring neurons firing. Now consider the most
primitive form of vision possible for an organism, it is only able to
tell lightness from darkness and only see one pixel. The information
content of its vision is a single bit. The conscious experience of
seeing white could correspond to a certain neuron firing, which though
its neural network increases the likelihood of thoughts such as
warmth, safety, daytime, etc. And also increases the likelihood of
certain behaviors, such as saying "I see white." This will be the
same in both A and B universes. Now scale up the capabilities of that
primitive vision to human vision, which contains hundreds of millions
of pixels, differentiating millions of colors, and receiving new
information from the optic nerve at 1 Gbps. The current state of your
brain's visual center corresponds to billions of individual,
simultaneous, and involuntary "thoughts"; this I believe is
responsible for the phenomenon of consciousness, and you can't
eliminate it without also eliminating the functionality of the brain.
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