Hi Chris / Stathis
I probably shouldn't have used the word adaptive.
I think Craig is arguing :
1) whatever 'feels'/psychological states emerge from the universe must be
compatible with its fundamental nature.
2) Anxiety implies that I really could avoid some feared event.
3) But que sera sera in a determined universe. what will be will be. I can't
avoid my fate.
consequently, anxiety can not emerge within a determined universe because of 2
Initially I took issue with 2) in the following way: I felt that uncertainty
about a unavoidable fate would provide space for anxiety to emerge. But the
more I thought about Craig's position the less tenable I thought this was. I
think his position is very compelling (if I understand it). If nothing has ever
avoided a fate how has the sense that this can be achieved emerged? What is it
about the universe that allows for this delusion? What is it built out of?
Anyway the questions flooded in. So i thought what if 'anxiety' doesn't imply
the ability to avoid a fate. Maybe its just an epiphenomenal 'feel' that floats
above psychological uncertainty and isn't really susceptible to further
analysis. That didn't seem to conflict with a determined universe readily.
Chris, as for whether any of this is plausible, probable etc. I'm afraid I
wouldn't even begin to know how to assess that. And to be honest I'm not even
sure whether Craig would accept my paraphrase of his argument.
All the best.
> From: stath...@gmail.com
> Date: Thu, 22 Aug 2013 15:01:35 +1000
> Subject: Re: Determinism - Tricks of the Trade
> To: firstname.lastname@example.org
> On 22 August 2013 13:20, chris peck <chris_peck...@hotmail.com> wrote:
> > Hi Craig
> > am saying that the ontology of desire is impossible under strong
> > determinism. Deterministic and random processes cannot possibly produce
> > desire - not because desire is special, but because it doesn't make any
> > sense. You are talking about putting in a gas pedal on a bowling ball.
> > I think I can meet you half way and agree that in a determined universe
> > wants, desires and anxieties would be futile. They wouldn't make sense from
> > an adaptive point of view.
> That's no more true for a determined universe than it is for a
> non-determined universe.
> > But I'm not convinced they make no logical sense. For example they could be
> > epiphenomena coming along for the ride, unnecessarily colouring the
> > unraveling of pre-written events.
> > The determined universe might be inefficient, if you like, carrying along
> > with it baggage that isn't really used. The wants and anxieties would be
> > implied by the universe's initial conditions and not everything in those
> > conditions need be functional. I don't see a logical contradiction there.
> > All the best.
> If it were possible to have the same behaviour without consciousness
> then consciousness would not have evolved - there would be no adaptive
> value to it. That is one reason why I think consciousness must be a
> necessary side-effect of intelligent behaviour, at least in organic
> machines such as we are.
> Stathis Papaioannou
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