On 17 Jun 2012, at 19:35, John Clark wrote:
On Sun, Jun 17, 2012 at Bruno Marchal <marc...@ulb.ac.be> wrote:
> We can perhaps agree that consciousness-here-and-now is the only
truth we know which seems undoubtable, so it might be more easy to
explain the illusion of matter to consciousness than the illusion of
consciousness to a piece of matter.
If consciousness is more fundamental than matter then it's difficult
to explain why it's easy to find examples of matter without
consciousness but nobody has yet found a single example of
consciousness without matter.
This is debatable. nobody has found, nor can found, example of
primitive matter. It is a metaphysical hypothesis brought by Aristotle
(and of course it is a popular extrapolation among animals)
Now, it is easy, when assuming comp, to have example of consciousnes
without *primitive* matter, like all experiences emerging from the
Yeah yeah I know, it's all just a illusion, but why only that
illusion? Why is the "illusion" always that matter effects
consciousness and consciousness effects matter if one is more
fundamental than the other?
Because consciousness, to be relatively manifestable, introduced a
separation between me and not me, and the "not me" below my
substitution level get stable and persistent by the statistical
interference between the infinitely many computations leading to my
first person actual state.
So in arithmetic we can explain why numbers believe in consciousness
and matter. In physics, we cannot unless we abandon comp and introduce
special non turing emulable, nor first person recoverable, special
>> I don't see why it *MUST* be due to a deeper physical
phenomenon; nearly every physicists alive says some things have no
> You might provide references.
Why? I think it would have been pompous and downright condescending
to do so, you will certainly have no trouble finding such references
without my help.
I don't find them. I can think only about the wave collapse, and
perhaps the big bang. But I don't see this being said explicitly by
It is a bit problematical for a computationalist, for the notion of
"cause" is a rather fuzzy high level notion.
But if I had said "many physicist think it is a logical necessity
that every event must have a cause" then THAT would indeed need
> Event without reason might exist but cannot be invoked to explain
To say that X happened not for any physical reason and not because
of God but for no reason whatsoever is a explanation and it might
even be true, but the trouble is it might not be and if you assume
its true and give up there is no hope of ever finding the true
reason if there is one. So there is the possibility we could spend
eternity looking for something that does not exist.
> To invoke them as such is just equivalent with "I dunno and will
These answers to a question are all different:
1) I dunno. (What is the capital of Wyoming?)
2) I dunno and may never know. (Is the Goldbach Conjecture true?)
3) I dunno and will never know. (What are the first hundred digits
of Chaitin's Omega Constant?)
This one, you can know, if you are patient enough. But you will not
know it and also know that you know it, so you can still doubt.
Chaitin's constant can be computed *in the limit*. Its decimal will
stabilize, you just don't know when.
4) Although meaningful the question has no answer. (Why is there
something rather than nothing?)
OK, but the question can be reduced to "why there are natural numbers
obeying addition and multiplication law".
And either a chain of "why" question is infinitely long or it is not
and you eventually come to a "why" question that cannot be answered
because there is no reason behind it.
But this can be (and should be) accepted for the initial axioms of a
theory, not for what we want to explain. A physical event without a
cause or a reason does not make much sense to me (and makes no sense
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