On Fri, Apr 5, 2013 at 11:35 AM, Craig Weinberg
<whatsons...@gmail.com<javascript:_e({}, 'cvml',
> wrote:

Why are all of your actions "obviously" due to subconscious influences? If
>>> that were the case why would personal awareness exist?
>> Your actions are due to physical processes in your brain which move your
>> muscles, but you are not actually aware of these physical processes.
> How can you be any more aware of those processes than by being them?

Because I have no idea that these processes are going on, or even that I
have a brain. Why do you think people used to believe that they think with
their hearts, or with their immaterial soul?

> You can't tell me that you feel neurons firing in your cerebellum, for
>> example.
> No, neurons firing are my feeling already, there is no more way that they
> can be felt from the human perspective.

But you are directly aware that your fingers are hitting the keys and
control them to write your email. You do not make such a decision to
activate cortical centres; it happens when you do something, but it is

>  It is an inference from empirical data that the brain is the organ of
>> thought at all.
>> You seem stuck on the belief that it is not possible to be conscious if
>> the processes leading to consciousness are deterministic, random or
>> subconscious. As a matter of logical deduction, this is false. It is
>> possible for a thing to have qualities different from its parts.
> This would be a case where the intentional would have to come from its
> complete opposite -  from the unintentional (determined and random), which
> could happen theoretically, but not in a universe which had no use for
> intention. A universe where intentionality is fundamental can pretend to be
> unintentional, but unintentional can't pretend to be anything.
> Unintentional is anesthetic and has no plausible use for intention.

Why does the universe need to hae a "use" for something? Who made this
rule? And what difference does it make if you say intentionality is
fundamental or emergent? It could be a fundamental fact that consciousness
will emerge when matter is organised in particular ways.

> * "...I never said that the laws of physics deny the possibility of free
>>>>> will,
>>>>> but free will is impossible if you define it in such a way as to be
>>>>> incompatible with the laws of physics or even with logic."*
>>>>> *
>>>>> *
>>>>> The "Laws" of physics are our deduction from the so far observed
>>>>> incomplete
>>>>> circumstances - they don't "allow" or "deny" - maybe explain at the
>>>>> level of their
>>>>> compatibility. The "impossibility" of free will is not a no-no, unless
>>>>> it has been
>>>>> proven to be an existing(?) FACT (what I do not believe in).
>>>>> Logic is the ultimate human pretension, especially if not said 'what
>>>>> kind of'.
>>>> In order to decide if free will exists the first thing is to understand
>>>> what is meant by the term. If it means "I choose to do what I want I do"
>>>> then free will exists. If it means something else such as "neither
>>>> determined nor random" then it doesn't exist.
>>> What do you claim is the difference between choosing to do what you want
>>> to do and acting as a physical phenomenon which is intentional rather than
>>> unintentional (determined or random)?
>> I don't accept your claim that "intentional" (either in the common sense
>> or the philosophical sense) is incompatible with the phenomenon being
>> determined or random. It seems to be something you just made up and present
>> as self-evident, which it certainly is not.
> You don't accept it but you have no reason to offer for your opinion. I
> present my view as self-evident because to me it certainly is. It's funny
> for you to talk about 'making things up' since that is certainly a thing
> which makes no sense in an unintentional universe.

I have a good reason for my opinion:

Fact 1 accepted by everyone: we are conscious.
Fact 2 accepted by everyone except you: everything that happens in the
universe is either determined or random.
Conclusion: hence, consciousness is compatible with a deterministic or
random universe.

Stathis Papaioannou

Stathis Papaioannou

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