On Sat, Dec 21, 2013 at 9:49 AM, Craig Weinberg <whatsons...@gmail.com>wrote:

> On Saturday, December 21, 2013 4:15:58 AM UTC-5, Jason wrote:
>>  If you say they are not conscious because they are only made of
>> mathematical relations, then you are admitting philosophical zombies exist.
> If you assume that mathematical relations are conscious because they
> remind us of ourselves, then you are denying that puppets exist.

They don't just "remind us" of ourselves, they would be like us in every
way.  They have working brains; hopes, fears, desires. They are not puppets
because they are autonomous and self-driven. They evolved to use the
mathematical relations to drive themselves just as our biology and
mentality evolved to use the physical laws. From their point of view, those
mathematical relations they are a part of constitute their "physical laws".
Note: from our point of view, we can't rule out that we ourselves are also
driven by some particular mathematical relation(s).

>> Otherwise, there would be patterns within these numbers that behave as if
>> they are conscious, write books about consciousness, have philosophy
>> courses on consciousness, etc. I say if the patterns that exist in these
>> functions talk about, and question their own subjective experiences, cry in
>> pain, and in all ways behave as if they are conscious, then they are
>> conscious.
> By that reasoning, If I see a painting of an artist painting themselves in
> a mirror, then I must assume that the figure the canvas is the painter of
> the painting.

It's what they do, not what they look like to us.  Paint on a canvas
behaves very different from an artist. If you could examine some particular
mathematical function, you might find patterns within it that behave just
like a painter making a painting. They are the same in the sense that the
computation performed by the evolving function is at some level the same as
the computation performed by some painter you know from Earth. And by
computationalism (which I know you reject) we would accept the two are
equivalently conscious.

>> These arithmetical truths exists independently of our verification of
>> them via simulation on physical computers.
> But arithmetic truths may not "exist" independently of *all* verification.
> Without the possibility of sensory experience in which arithmetical truths
> are presented directly, there is no reason to suppose any sort of
> "existence" at all. The fact of arithmetic truth makes sensory experience
> no more likely or plausible than a universe lacking any arithmetic at all,
> so we must conclude that aesthetic presence is a further fact about the
> world.

If we assume "sensory experience" only, then we can't explain mathematical
truth.  If we assume mathematical truth, then we can explain mathematical
truth and quite possibly, sensory experience. It's two (explanations) for
one (assumption).

> From all indications, this fact of experience cannot be accessed
> theoretically in any way, and can actually be productively modeled as 'that
> which is the exact opposite of theory' (information, math, representation).
> Where arithmetic truths are generic and universal, aesthetic presence is
> proprietary and uniquely local.

What about a given particular mathematical function? From the inside it
could appear proprietary and local.

> Aesthetic presentations are concrete rather than abstract, participatory
> rather than aloof and indirect.
I would say the difference between concrete and abstract is only a matter
of perspective.


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