On May 3, 4:08 pm, John Clark <johnkcl...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Wed, May 2, 2012 at 4:11 PM, Craig Weinberg <whatsons...@gmail.com>wrote:
> > >>> there is really nothing more or less to say about it other than that
> >>> it is primordial orientation itself.
> >> >> So awareness is the feeling data has when it is being processed, and
> >> there is not much more you can say about it.
> > Data has no feeling when it is being processed.
> But you said "awareness is primordial" and I agree, so if we're right and
> awareness is just what happens when certain physical events occur
Awareness is primordial, but physics is not. I think that physics is a
category of awareness, and that no physical event can occur
independently of some kind of awareness of that event.
> and there
> is nothing more to be said about it then I don't see why you would make the
> dogmatic assertion that you made above.
Because you still don't understand what I'm talking about.
> > We have evidence of this in Blindsight,
> I don't find it surprising that physical brain damage can hinder the
> interpretation of information signals sent from the eyes to that damaged
> organ, nor do I see how it is relevant to what we were discussing.
With blindsight, we see that there is a difference between data
processing functions of optical detection and visual awareness. Visual
awareness doesn't just happen because you are able to detect optical
stimulation. This means that any kind of evolutionary biological
argument that suggests that perception just comes with the territory
automatically with the evolution of function is bogus.
> > and in the lack of indications of any sort of feeling from all data
> > processing equipment we have ever constructed.
> What sort of indication were you looking for, what sort of thing would
> convince you?
When a computer intentionally tries to physically injure its
programmer, that will convince me. If a computer begs not to be turned
off, if it lies to trick us into improving it's hardware, if it got
tired of doing a repetitive task, if it tried to communicate in an
unscripted way, etc. The normal things that would indicate to anyone
that something was alive and awake and not a machine.
> > > Acting on the reason you created = Free Will
> So this thing called "free will" is deterministic whatever the hell it is,
> it was caused by the reason you created,
No. Making up your mind is not caused by a reason created by making up
your mind. It is primordial. Free will is outbound awareness. It is
beneath causality. Since we are complex beings made up of so many
nested frames of awareness, we have a lot of influences to inform us,
some more insistently than others, but in many cases those influences
have no care one way or the other and it is us ourselves who decide
what we prefer. Our preferring is not the cause of free will, it is
free will and causality being created live.
> and if you created that reason for
> a reason then it's deterministic too; and it you did not created that
> reason for a reason then it's random, there is no third alternative.
You are talking like a broken record (which is exactly what a universe
of only determinism or randomness would be). I reject your false
dichotomy and have explained repeatedly why I do, and why anyone
should if they examine ordinary experience without prejudice and
> > even random processes are determined
> If it's determined then it's not random.
No, that's factually incorrect. I can say that random = determined by
random selection. If I flip a coin or roll dice, the outcome is
determined by many different physical forces and consequences
interacting. The result occurs within a range of heads or tails, 2-12
etc. You could say that rolling dice is random, or that it isn't
completely random, or that is entirely determined, but even if it were
completely random, you can't say that the outcome is completely
undetermined. The dice aren't going to come up 45. The coin isn't
going to turn into a potato. Randomness is a concept of statistical
selection and nothing more. It's not fundamental to reality.
> > within expected ranges of possible outcomes.
> And sometime the expected happens and sometimes it does not. The movement
> of a gas molecule is random and if you put a bunch of them into a container
> the probability any single gas molecule will hit the side of the container
> is random, however you can calculate a good approximation of the pressure
> on the container but only because you are dealing with a astronomically
> large number of molecules. If one molecule randomly moves in one direction
> you can be pretty certain another molecule is randomly moving in the
> diametrically opposite direction and the randomness cancels out, so you can
> work out the average collision rate of molecules hitting the side of the
> container, in other words you can calculate the pressure. But the
> individual molecules still move at random.
The random molecules could be moving where they feel like moving. The
idea of randomness helps us make predictions in large statistical
aggregates. It's no more real than 'averageness'.
> > Free will is ordinary, not magic, and absolutely represents a third
> > fundamental alternative that is neither purely random/determined, nor
> > non-random/non-determined
> I don't know what the ASCII string "free will" means but I don't need to to
> know that "free will" is X or "free will" is not X. The desire to have it
> both ways is just childish, it's time to face logic, and reality.
What reality are you talking about? One that is robotic and
meaningless or one that is random and meaningless? And how are "you"
talking "about" anything at all in either case?
> > If I decide to type this sentence, I don't need to create a reason to do
> > it
> Certainly, modern physics tells us that pure randomness happens all the
> time, but if you really did write something for no reason it will not be
> worth reading.
How could anything be worth reading if reading it didn't make a
difference in how you exercise your free will?
> > I just decide what I want to say and type it.
> And you decided for a reason or you did not decide for a reason.
No. Deciding is how reason is created. To reason = making up one's
mind. The present isn't only the continuation of the past.
> > > by choosing which of those reasons to privilege or ignore, as well as
> > many other factors which are not necessarily reasonable, I freely choose my
> > actions.
> And you chose which of those reasons to privilege or ignore for a reason or
> you did not do so for a reason.
No, there is no pre-existing reason that makes me choose what I
choose. There are all kinds of reasons which I can consider as well as
reasoning out new considerations.
> >> if you ask a computer to find the prime factors of a very large number
> >> you may have to wait a long time to see what it decides to do while the
> >> machine makes up its mind.
> > > It's not making up its mind, you can stop it at any point in the
> > calculation and see precisely where in the process it is.
> Yes, so what, Turing proved that in general you still won't know what the
> computer will end up doing, if you want to know that all you can do is
> watch the computer and see.
I don't care what it will end up doing, I'm saying that there is no
comparable process to making up your mind for a machine.
> > It's like a clutch. The gears are deterministic, but you have to decide
> > when to put in the clutch and pick which gear you want.
> OK, and you made that decision to use the clutch for a reason or you did
There are all kinds of reasons to use the clutch, but your choice to
use it is not one of them. Your choice is created by you personally
> > preferring something is neither random nor non-random.
> It's idiotic to say something is both not X and not not X. Idiotic!
No, false dichotomies are idiotic. This isn't some abstract fart fest,
I'm talking about reality. Reality doesn't follow Aristotelian logic
all the time, especially when you are dealing with the realities of
awareness and will. Do you really think that after all this time,
consciousness would still be a mystery if it was as simple as saying,
'the mind is either the brain or it isn't the brain'?
You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups
"Everything List" group.
To post to this group, send email to email@example.com.
To unsubscribe from this group, send email to
For more options, visit this group at