On 12/9/2013 1:40 AM, Bruno Marchal wrote:
On 09 Dec 2013, at 01:33, LizR wrote:

On 9 December 2013 05:52, John Clark <johnkcl...@gmail.com <mailto:johnkcl...@gmail.com>> wrote:

    On Sat, Dec 7, 2013 at 4:38 PM, LizR <lizj...@gmail.com 

        > Could you name a materialistic theory that explains consciousness

    Consciousness is the feeling information has when it is being processed; if
    conscious is fundamental, that is to say it comes at the end of a long line 
    "what is that?" questions, then after saying that there is just nothing 
more that
    can be said about it. And hey, it's just as good as a billion other 

Ah yes, Max Tegmark's "theory".These aren't theories, is the problem. One needs a rigorous definition of what consciousness is, to start with, and then a theory that explains all its observed features, and makes testable predictions. Otherwise all one has is a jumble of words.

To be precise, we don't need a definition of what consciousness is. WE need only to agree on some assertion on consciousness. It is the same with line and points. The same with natural numbers. We don't need to define them (in fact we can't). We need only to agree on axioms about them, and methods or rules of logical inference/deduction.

And we learn what are natural numbers in the same way, ostensively by one's mother holding up fingers and saying "one", "two",... And so we generalize and make a theory about fingers and other countable things. And we know that in all cases we run into we can add one more and so we casually assume an axiom of infinity because it is convenient and seems to cause no problems. But if it leads to paradoxes and absurdities...


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