> Here you are implicitly assuming that there is ONE fundamental level
> of reality only.  Why do you keep making this assumption?  Property
> Dualism says that there is more than one way to describe reality, and
> each way is no more or less fundamental than the other.

I accept that there is more than one way to describe reality, and I
accept the concept of supervenience, but where I differ with you
(stubbornly, perhaps) is over use of the word "fundamental". The base
property seems to me more deserving of being called "fundamental" than
the supervenient property. If you were to give concise instructions to
a god who wanted to build a copy of our world you could skip all the
information about values etc. confident in the knowledge that all this
extra stuff would emerge as long as the correct physical information
was conveyed; whereas the converse is not the case.

[If the mental does not supervene on the physical this changes the
particular example, but not the general point.]

> Your motivations are not *caused* by the physical processes in your
> brain.  Instead, I think it's more accurate to say that your
> motivations are *super-imposed* on top of these physical processes.
> But motivations, not being physical, can't cause physical changes
> (indeed they can exert no causal influence on the physical world at
> all).  Nor are physical processes in any sense *causing* changes in
> your motivations.    Of course since we know that our minds are
> dependent on the physical world, motivational states have to be
> *correlated* with the physical states.  But correlation is not
> causation.

Causation, and the relationship between causation and supervenience,
is a philosophically very tricky subject.

> Physics only describes physical properties.  Physics can give a
> complete explanation of the state changes in the *physical* properties
> of your brain, but these properties are all about particles, energy
> and fields.  They are not about aesthetic preferences.  The physical
> explanations cannot explain your aesthetic preferences.  Where in the
> particles, energy and fields in your brain can you find aesthetic
> preferences?  ;)

They have to be in there somewhere, since it appears that a particular
brain state is necessary and sufficient for a particular aesthetic
preference. In the same way, cardiovascular system activity is
necessary and sufficient for the circulation of the blood. The
difference between the two cases is that with circulation it is
obviously so but with mind it is not obviously so: we can imagine the
appropriate brain activity without mind but not the appropriate
cardiovascular activity without circulation. But maybe this is just a
problem with our imagination!

> I postulate a three-fold property dualism - my proposed three ways to
> describe reality are *Physical, *Teleological and *Mathematical. You
> could describe the same reality in any one of these three ways, but I
> think its a mistake to say that any one of these ways is more or less
> fundmental than the others.  It helps if you look at the diagram I
> posted - the physical concepts are all displayed in the left column ,
> the teleological concepts are all in the middle column, and the
> mathematical concepts are all in the right column (concepts classified
> by subject area).  The idea is that the concepts in one row are all on
> the same level- none is more or less fundamental than the others.
> Here's the diagram:
> http://groups.google.com/group/everything-list/web/mcrt-domain-model-eternity

I have to think about this further, but I have questions. As well as
the initial point I made about what deserves to be called fundamental
(perhaps a definition is called for?), I don't see why certain
categories are irreducible. For example, chemistry (physical
transformations) could be seen as a special case of what you call
mechanics (laws of the actions of forces), chiefly the electrostatic
force. Also, it would be helpful if you could describe the underlying
motivation and history of the model, or refer me to previous posts if
I've missed them.

Stathis Papaioannou

You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups 
"Everything List" group.
To post to this group, send email to [EMAIL PROTECTED]
To unsubscribe from this group, send email to [EMAIL PROTECTED]
For more options, visit this group at 

Reply via email to