On Tue, Apr 3, 2012 at 6:08 AM, Craig Weinberg <whatsons...@gmail.com> wrote:

> From blindsight, synesthesia, and anosognosia we know that particular
> qualia are not inevitably associated with the conditions they usually
> represent for us, so it seems impossible to justify qualia on a
> functionalist basis. Just as a computer needs no speakers and video
> screen inside itself, there is no purpose for such a presentation
> layer within our own mechanism. Of course, even if there were a
> purpose, there is no hint of such a possibility from mechanism alone.
> If there was some reason that a bucket of rocks could benefit by some
> kind of collective 'experience' occurring amongst them, that's a
> million miles from suspecting that experience could be a conceivable
> possibility.
> Rather than 'consciousness', human beings would benefit evolutionarily
> much more by just being able to do something mechanically conceivable
> things like teleport, time travel, or breathe fire. Awareness doesn't
> even make sense as a possibility. Were we not experiencing it
> ourselves we could never anticipate any such possibility in any
> universe.

Since there is no evolutionary advantage to consciousness it must be a
side-effect of the sort of behaviour that conscious organisms display.
Otherwise, why did we not evolve as zombies?

Stathis Papaioannou

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