On Wednesday, March 20, 2013 12:09:24 PM UTC-4, John Clark wrote:
> On Wed, Mar 20, 2013  Craig Weinberg <whats...@gmail.com <javascript:>>wrote:
> >> If when X is changed there is ALWAYS a change in Y in the same 
>>> direction, and when Y changes you can   ALWAYS  find a change in X  that 
>>> preceded it, then X causes Y. IT'S WHAT THE WORD "CAUSES" MEANS!
>> > Two flowers bloom at sunrise every day without fail. Does one cause the 
>> other to bloom?
> I don't know, I'd have to perform some experiment's to find out.  

I see that sophistry blooms and eclipses common sense as well.

> > Do the flowers cause the sun to rise?
> If when X happens Y always happens AND when X doesn't happen Y never 
> happens then we can say with great confidence that X causes Y because 
> that's what the word "causes" means. 

I just showed you why that is not true. The purple flower always blooms 
when the orange flower blooms. Your great confidence is misplaced and your 
meaning for the word "causes" is inadequate.

> Thus if when the flower blooms the sun always comes up AND when the flower 
> does not bloom (such as when the experimenter ties the bloom closed) the 
> Earth changes its rotational speed and the sun never comes above the 
> horizon then we can say with great confidence that the flower caused the 
> sun to rise because that's what the word "causes means. 

Then all we have to do is tie back all awareness in the universe and see if 
anything is still there - without using awareness to do it.

> We might not fully understand how or why botany and astronomy are related 
> in this way but there would be no doubt that they are. However we DON'T get 
> these experimental results in the real world so we say the flower does not 
> cause the sun to rise. 

You are assuming that you know that the data you have access to and that 
you can control is all the data that there is. Certainly with consciousness 
that is not the case. You can't run a control against consciousness, since 
consciousness can never not be present.

> When the chemistry of the brain changes the conscious experience that the 
> brain produces always changes, AND when the chemistry does not change the 
> conscious experience never changes, thus  we can say with great confidence 
> that chemistry causes consciousness because that's what the word "causes" 
> means. 

No, we can just as easily say that the conscious experience cause the brain 
to produce changes. Why do you arbitrarily privilege the chemistry? Cause 
has to occur before an effect. That is not the case with brain changes and 
awareness. We can decide to do something tomorrow and our brain will change 
tomorrow because of the cause we have set in motion today.

> We might not fully understand how or why chemistry and consciousness are 
> related in this way but there is no doubt that they are.  

They are related by virtue of being synchronized and part of a larger 
whole. There is no way for any body to 'cause' an experience though. They 
can modulate access to experience, but experience cannot be caused any more 
than physics can be caused.

> We DO get these experimental results in the real world so we say that if 
> matter is organized in certain ways it produces consciousness.   

That's because we are working backwards from physics rather than from both 
consciousness and physics to the common ground. It's a catastrophic 
mistake, as bad as religious fundamentalism makes.

>>   > Two unrelated systems can both be related to a third, 
>>> >> If they are both related to the same thing then they are not 
>>> unrelated.
>> > They can be unrelated except for their mutual relation to the third 
>> thing though, obviously.
> Besides that Mrs Lincoln how did you like the play? I am unrelated to my 
> sister except for our mutual relation to our parents, obviously.

Well, no, if all that was between you and your sister was the relation to 
your parents, then you would have never seen or heard her in your entire 
life. If you had a secret sister that you just found out about then you 
would be related by your parents and by knowing about her existence.


>   John K Clark

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