On Sep 23, 3:20 am, Brent Meeker <meeke...@dslextreme.com> wrote: >> What would make a theory of consciousness a > > physical theory would be a normal causal account of a succession of > > physical states, the experience that accompanies them, and the precise > > relation between them. Such a theory would of course escape the > > vulnerability to accusations of lack of meaningful physical commitment > > inherent in MR. > > Such a theory is available. It is the evolutionary account of the > development of consciousness, c.f. Thomas Metzinger, Antonio Damasio, > Julian Jaynes, Daniel Dennett.
Well, I've read Damasio, Jaynes and Dennett, all at some length, and whilst each offers fascinating insight from his own perspective, I don't think that any of them could be said to offer a physical causal theory of first-person experience in the sense we are discussing here. Does Metzinger go any further? I've got quite a lot on my reading list so I've been resisting the temptation to add him to it for the moment - should I succumb? > Knowing the physical function of a species sensors and the evolutionary > history > of it's environment you could infer what it is conscious of. True, but this is to give a third-person behavioural account, not a first-person experiential one. I'm right in assuming that you don't intend to offer a third-person account as an eliminativist dismissal of first-person experience - yes? I didn't think that was your position, but you've made this kind of comment so frequently recently that I'm starting to wonder. David > David Nyman wrote: > > 2009/9/22 Flammarion <peterdjo...@yahoo.com>: > > >>> So what did you mean the reader to conclude from your original > >>> argument? > >> I wasn't trying to settle the whole issue in one go. > > >>> You concluded that the realisation of a computation doesn't > >>> cause consciousness. But did you also mean to imply that nonetheless > >>> the realisation of a computation IS consciousness? If so, why didn't > >>> you say so? And how would that now influence your evaluation of CTM? > > > Would you respond to this please? > > >>>> I find them both quite contestable > >>> If you would risk saying precisely why, you might have a counter-argument. > >> e.g. > >>http://philpapers.org/rec/KLEDIS > > > Klein's criticism of Maudlin is concerned with constraining what might > > be considered a valid computational realisation. Were this accepted > > as reasonable, he could attack that particular reductio by disputing > > the adequacy of the realisation. This is however a separate question > > to the lack of any consistent justification of the association of > > homogeneous experiential states to heterogeneous physical ones, which > > does not depend on any particular reductio argument. Klein does not > > set out to address this issue, but tips his hand by remarking that "I > > remain neutral between identifying the disposition with the > > first-order property or treating it as a second-order property that is > > realized in each case by some first-order property". > > > The problem with CTM as a physical theory is that it violates normal > > standards of physical explanation. The very notion of computation is > > based not on a consistent self-selection of a specific > > physically-defined class of events, but rather on an external > > interpretation of a functionally-defined class. This is not > > problematic in the third-person sense, but if a first-person > > experiential state is to be considered equivalent merely to what we > > could say about something, then it is not a physical state in any > > normally understood sense. What would make a theory of consciousness a > > physical theory would be a normal causal account of a succession of > > physical states, the experience that accompanies them, and the precise > > relation between them. Such a theory would of course escape the > > vulnerability to accusations of lack of meaningful physical commitment > > inherent in MR. > > Such a theory is available. It is the evolutionary account of the > development of consciousness, c.f. Thomas Metzinger, Antonio Damasio, > Julian Jaynes, Daniel Dennett. Knowing the physical function of a > species sensors and the evolutionary history of it's environment you > could infer what it is conscious of. > > Brent --~--~---------~--~----~------------~-------~--~----~ You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "Everything List" group. To post to this group, send email to firstname.lastname@example.org To unsubscribe from this group, send email to everything-list+unsubscr...@googlegroups.com For more options, visit this group at http://groups.google.com/group/everything-list?hl=en -~----------~----~----~----~------~----~------~--~---