On Fri, Aug 12, 2011 at 3:22 PM, meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net> wrote:

>> This is why the thought experiment involves *partial* replacement. The
>> behaviour we are considering is the low level behaviour of the neurons
>> as well as the high level behaviour of the subject. The original
>> biological tissue is constrained to behave normally if it receives the
>> normal inputs from the replacement, and if consciousness supervenes on
>> the physical it is therefore constrained not to notice that anything
>> has changed.
>
> That doesn't follow.  Your argument assumes that consciousness supervenes on
> the biological part, but not on the replacement.

In the first instance the consciousness supervenes only on the the
biological part, since we assume the replacement part to lack
consciousness. But then this leads to conceptual difficulties. As I
have discussed, it would mean that you could be completely blind but
behave normally and not notice you were blind with any of your other
faculties. Or you could be aphasic, unable to understand speech, but
have a normal conversation, listen to an argument and come up with a
counterargument, plan your revenge on an enemy when informed of his
treachery, etc. etc. It's not such a conceptual problem with a full
zombie, which has no consciousness of anything at all, but it is a
problem if we consider that an arbitrary part of your brain could be
zombified and you wouldn't notice.


-- 
Stathis Papaioannou

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