On 7/3/2011 7:45 PM, Jason Resch wrote:

On Jul 3, 2011, at 4:46 PM, meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net <mailto:meeke...@verizon.net>> wrote:

On 7/3/2011 8:56 AM, Jason Resch wrote:

On Sun, Jul 3, 2011 at 2:35 AM, selva kumar <selvakr1...@gmail.com <mailto:selvakr1...@gmail.com>> wrote:

    On Sun, Jul 3, 2011 at 12:59 PM, Jason Resch
    <jasonre...@gmail.com <mailto:jasonre...@gmail.com>> wrote:

        On Fri, Jul 1, 2011 at 6:23 AM, selva kumar
        <selvakr1...@gmail.com <mailto:selvakr1...@gmail.com>> wrote:

            Is consciousness causally effective ?

        If it is not causally effective, then you must explain what
        caused the word "consciousness" to enter our  lexicon and
        what caused the field of pihlosophy of mind, and all the
        various books on the subject of consciousness.  The dirty
        secret of epiphenominalism (the theory that consciousness is
        casually inert) is that if it were a true theory, the theory
        of epiphenominalism would be entirely private and
        unsharable.  The fact that a theory was generated and shared
        to explain consciousness proves consciousness has effects.
         Even the fact that we are discussing it now in this thread
        can be taken as evidence of its causal effects.


    Then by your definition..Consciousness is our ability to think ?

No, my point is that if you are thinking about consciousness, then what else could it have been but consciousness that caused you to think about it?

That would be the material cause in Aristotles sense. But material causes don't form causal chains.


If consciousness is causually inert then history would be the same even if it were abolished throughout the universe.

To me it seems absurd that we would be endlessly debating some nonexistent thing which none of us has ever experienced, yet that is exactly the conclusion that comes from assuming consciousness has no effects.

You are making a leap of inference from causally inert to nonexistent. Mathematics is causally inert. Yet it's existence is debatable and it's certainly interesting to discuss. And in any case, the elan vital was endlessly debate for centuries and was eventually discarded as nonexistent.


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