On 11 July 2012 21:17, meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net> wrote:

*But it isn't uniquely characterized by that.  I don't even know what
> "irreducibly synthetic" means.  I know what "synthetic" means; it means
> made (synthesized) of something else, it means artificial, not natural??
> But in any case "the subject", the first-person, is also singular and
> persistent thru time.*

"Irreducibly synthetic" is perhaps somewhat inelegant  It does however
express the idea that, on the one hand, mind seems to us to be composed of,
or (somewhat metaphorically) to be a synthesis of, many ontological
elements but, on the other hand, is by no means simply reducible to those

*When we bestow the property "exists" on the ontology of the third-person
world model, we then take on the task of explaining the first-person
subjective in terms of that model.  Everyone on this list (except me) seems
to assume this impossible.*

I agree of course that the third-person ontology must figure centrally in
the explanation.  But assumptions not directly necessitated by any
third-person ontology must be introduced (though often only tacitly) in
order to adequately characterise any first-person view of it. For example,
physiology, biology, chemistry or even psychology can be categorised as
merely "effective" levels of description supervening on physics.  But this
dismissive move can only be applied to the *epistemological analogues* of
any of these effective concepts at the cost of their actual elimination
from the discussion.  Of course we do not actually desist from discussing
them as we would be reduced to silence, and this obscures the realisation
that, however essential they may be to explanation, they are superfluous to
the purported ontology.


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