I think there could be differences in how vision is perceived if all
of the visual cortex lacked DNA, even if the neurons of the cortex
exhibited superficial evidence of normal connectivity. A person could
be dissociated from the images they see, feeling them to be
meaningless or unreal, seen as if in third person or from malicious
phantom/alien eyeballs. Maybe it would be more subtle...a sensation of
otherhanded sight, or sight seeming to originate from a place behind
the ears rather than above the nose. The non-DNA vision could be
completely inaccessible to the conscious mind, a psychosomatic/
hysterical blindness, or perhaps the qualia would be different,
unburdened by DNA, colors could seem lighter, more saturated like a
dream. The possibilities are endless. The only way to find out is to
do experiments.

DNA may not play a direct role in neuronal to neuronal interaction,
but the same could be said of perception itself. We have nothing to
show that perception is the necessary result of neuronal interaction.
The same interactions could exist in a simulation without any kind of
perceived universe being created somewhere. Just because the behavior
of neurons correlates with perception doesn't mean that their behavior
alone causes perception. Materials matter. A TV set made out of
hamburger won't work.

What I'm trying to say is that the sensorimotive experience of matter
is not limited to the physical interior of each component of a cell or
molecule, but rather it is a completely other, synergistic topology
which is as diffuse and experiential as the component side is discrete
and observable. There is a functional correlation, but that's just
where the two topologies intersect. Many minor physical changes to the
brain can occur without any noticeable differences in perception -
sometimes major changes, injuries, etc. Major changes in the psyche
can occur without any physical precipitate - reading a book may
unleash a flood of neurotransmitters but the cause is semantic, not

 What we don't know is what levels of our human experience are
essential and which ones may be vestigial or redundant. We don't know
what the qualitative content of the individual neuron signals are,
whether they contribute to a high level feeling upstream or whether
that contribution requires a low level experience to be amplified. If
a cell has no DNA, maybe it feels distress and that feeling is
amplified in the aggregate signals.

On Jul 19, 7:26 am, Stathis Papaioannou <stath...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Thu, Jul 14, 2011 at 10:45 PM, Craig Weinberg <whatsons...@gmail.com> 
> wrote:
> >  It's not about whether other cells would sense the imposter neuron,
> > it's
> > about how much of an imposter the neuron is. If acts like a real cell
> > in
> > every physical way, if another organism can kill it and eat it
> > and
> > metabolize it completely then you pretty much have a cell. Whatever
> > cannot
> > be metabolized in that way is what potentially detracts from the
> > ability to
> > sustain consciousness. It's not your cells that need to sense DNA,
> > it's the
> > question of whether a brain composed entirely of, or significantly of
> > cells
> > lacking DNA would be conscious in the same way as a
> > person.
> DNA doesn't play a direct role in neuronal to neuronal interaction. It
> is necessary for the synthesis of proteins, so without it the neuron
> would be unable to, for example, produce more surface receptors or the
> essential proteins needed for cell survival; however, if the DNA were
> destroyed the neuron would carry on functioning as per usual for at
> least a few minutes. Now, you speculate that consciousness may somehow
> reside in the components of the neuron and not just in its function,
> so that perhaps if the DNA were destroyed the consciousness would be
> affected - let's say for the sake of simplicity that it too would be
> destroyed - even in the period the neuron was functioning normally. If
> that is so, then if all the neurons in your visual cortex were
> stripped of their DNA you would be blind: your visual qualia would
> disappear. But if all the neurons in your visual cortex continued to
> function normally, they would send the normal signals to the rest of
> your brain and the rest of your brain would behave as if you could
> see: that is, you would accurately describe objects put in front of
> your eyes and honestly believe that you had normal vision. So how
> would this state, behaving as if you had normal vision and believing
> you had normal vision, differ from actually having normal vision; or
> to put it differently, how do you know that you aren't blind and
> merely deluded about being able to see?
> --
> 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 everything-list@googlegroups.com.
To unsubscribe from this group, send email to 
For more options, visit this group at 

Reply via email to