My Philosophy of Mind Theory

Is the mind the same as the body? What is consciousness? Can machines have it?

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fenedara
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My Philosophy of Mind Theory

Post by fenedara » Wed Dec 31, 2014 3:52 pm

I have a philosophy of mind theory that I would like to get feedback on if anyone would be interested in doing that. Unfortunately, it is kind of long.

A few years ago I discovered something related to philosophy involving subjective experience that seemed very impressive to me. At first I thought it was more of a religious thing than a philosophy thing, but after talking to a few people about it, one of them suggested that it was related to philosophy. After that, I talked to a person with a degree in philosophy who confirmed that it was related to philosophy and that more specifically it was related to a branch of philosophy called philosophy of mind. From what I've learned about philosophy of mind, it seems that the theory that I came up with is most similar to a theory called epiphenomenalism, but is not the same as that theory. In particular, it seems like epiphenomenalism is different from my theory in that epiphenomenalism doesn't provide an explanation of how humans are aware of mental events if mental events have no impact on the physical world where-as my theory provides an explanation for this. I think my theory is potentially impressive because it is something that pretty much every human has had enough information to discover for a very long time and no one has discovered it and spread it. I also think it is impressive because it indicates very strongly that the world was not created or set up completely chaotically and that instead there is at least some small bit of order built into the world.

I have explained my theory to approximately 7 people so far. All but one of those people disagreed with some part of my theory and the one that agreed with me didn't think that my theory was impressive. I don't completely understand the reasons these people didn't agree with my theory or think it was impressive, but I would like to get more feedback. I would like to either understand why my theory is wrong or unimpressive or I would like other people to understand why my theory is correct and impressive. I would also like to know if someone else has already discovered my theory, and, if so, what it is called. Additionally, I think my explanation of my theory might be somewhat difficult to understand, so it would also be useful for me to get advice and feedback on how to improve my explanation.

My theory is below:

Humans experience things like sight, hearing, the other senses, thoughts, and feelings. We experience these things from a first person perspective. Said another way, humans have subjective experience. The way humans experience these things is a very special thing. Humans do not experience things the way that a rock experiences heat or the way a computer experiences running a video game. Humans experience things in a way that makes them a sort of an 'output channel' or a 'viewer'. If nothing experienced things like humans experience things, it would be like a TV that is on in an empty room with no one watching it. Humans experience things in a way that turns them into first person perspectives.

In fact, I think the way humans experience things is such a special thing that I don't think it could possibly be a physical thing. I think it would be possible for human subjective experience to be something that relies completely on the physical realm to determine how many separate entities are experiencing things and which of them are experiencing what at what times, but I still think the subjective experience itself can't be physical. Physical things are things like atoms, molecules, sub-atomic particles, and forces and I don't think subjective experience could be another physical thing like those things. If subjective experience is non-physical, then I think the entity that is experiencing things is probably also non-physical. If it's non-physical then it can't simply be the human body or brain that is experiencing things, it must be some other non-physical entity that is sort of attached to the human brain. I'll call this entity 'the experiencer', but I think it could also be called 'the soul' or possibly 'consciousness' or 'the mind'. The definition of this 'experiencer' is that it is something that experiences everything in the conscious mind of the human brain it is attached to.

If this type of experience is a non-physical thing then that would also mean that the physical behavior of the human brain is not the same thing as subjective experience. So even when a person sees something, thinks something as a result, and then says something, all of that is physical behavior of the brain and body and subjective experience is a separate thing from that. Basically the brain is a sort of a biological computer and is only involved in subjective experience in that the experiencer experiences different things depending on the physical state of the brain. The experiencer is not the thing that actually controls the body. When the experiencer experiences thinking something, that is actually a completely different thing from when the brain thinks something. The experiencer is dependant on the physical realm for determining what it experiences, but doesn't actually have any impact on the physical realm. The experiencer is kind of like an output channel so it accepts output from the physical realm (specifically the physical state of the human brain), but it doesn't send output to the physical realm.

However, if the experiencer doesn't have any impact on the physical realm, then there is the question of how humans are aware that they experience things since that awareness is part of the activity of the brain which is part of the physical realm. I think the most likely possibility is basically fate, or, more specifically, that the world was specifically created or set up such that humans would eventually end up with genetic code that would result in brain activity that would make humans think that they are experiencing things. Another possibility is that the experiencer's attachment to the human brain has a sort of an almost magical quality to it that changes the physical behavior of the brain such that the brain is aware of the experiencer's subjective experience. Even if these 2 possiblities are wrong, I think it is at least very likely that humans got awareness of subjective experience because it is somehow part of the way the world was created or set up. I don't think it is very likely that humans just happened to randomly get this awareness that lines up with the fact that there are actual non-physical experiencers attached to humans. If I am correct about this, then that would mean that at least to that small extent the world was not created or set up entirely randomly or chaotically, which I think might be the most important discovery derived from this theory.

That is pretty much the entirety of my theory. Below are some additional implications and details that I don't necessarily need much feedback on.

There are a few other interesting things about the human awareness of subjective experience. First of all, even if the experiencer is an entity that is attached to the brain but separate from it, the awareness is such that it gives the brain the impression that the brain is both the brain and the experiencer at the same time. Secondly, the awareness doesn't just indicate to the brain that it is experiencing things subjectively, it also indicates to the brain what it is that the experiencer is experiencing by giving the brain the impression that it is experiencing those things. If I didn't know from science that the brain controls the body, this would have made me think that the experiencer controls the body through a sort of almost magical type of influence. Of course, since the experiencer experiences everything in the conscious mind of the human's brain, the experiencer will also experience this awareness that suggests that it is experiencing things and it will be true when the experiencer experiences it because the experiencer is the thing that experiences things even though it wasn't true for the brain. Also, the experiencer only experiences what is in the conscious mind of the brain, so there is lots of stuff that the brain does that is not part of the conscious mind which the experiencer is not experiencing. Conveniently, the state of the conscious mind of the brain that the experiencer experiences is the same as what the physical human that the brain controls will say it is experiencing if it is asked and responds truthfully. This means that the awareness of the experiencer can theoretically be communicated between humans easily.

There is also, of course, the question of whether or not animals experience things subjectively like humans do. I don't think there is really anything that would suggest either that they have subjective experience or not. Theoretically, if we could figure out a way to ask an animal if it has subjective experience, then it could tell us, but they are all probably too stupid to understand the question well enough to give us an accurate answer. There is indication that animals have thoughts, sensations, and emotions which would seem to suggest that they also have subjective experience because in humans those things seem to go along with subjective experience, but I don't think it is really possible to tell just from that.

Additionally, there is the question of whether or not a computer AI could experience things subjectively like humans do. I don't think there is any reason to believe that a computer AI could have subjective experience. We know that humans probably have subjective experience because of the awareness of subjective experience that human brains have, but there is no reason to think that a computer AI could gain the awareness of subjective experience that humans have. Even if a computer AI were designed to have the awareness of subjective experience that human brains have, I still don't think that would suggest that the computer AI actually has subjective experience. It seems like the awareness is a sort of a message from the world (or a god if there is one) that is probably written in the genetic code of humans. Even if someone else wrote the same "message" in the source code of a computer AI, it wouldn't necessarily be true because the world didn't write that message. This could also be true of a geneticly engineered being. If it turned out that animals didn't have subjective experience and someone genetically engineered some animal like a dog such that it had the awareness of subjective experience, the dog still wouldn't necessarily have subjective experience. This also brings up the question of how much someone could use genetic engineering to alter the DNA of a human without the human losing subjective experience (even if the awareness of subjective experience remains). Beyond a certain point, the genetically engineered human might as well have been a genetically engineered animal with the awareness of subjective experience added on. The interesting thing here is that the rule for what has subjective experience and what does not isn't really completely known, yet it at least seems very likely that humans have subjective experience and that if an animal could be asked if it has awareness of subjective experience and said yes, then it would probably also have subjective experience.

Another related oddity is that before a human thinks that the experiencer exists, the human cares primarily about the welfare of the physical human, but after a human starts thinking that the experiencer exists, the human cares about the welfare of the experiencer instead. So, for example, if a human were given the opportunity to die in such a way that the experiencer would re-attach itself to a different human that is under better circumstances, the human would want to do this because it would be good for the experiencer even though the physical human would die. Of course, in real life, it seems like the welfare of the experiencer is always completely dependant on the welfare of the physical human it is attached to, so that type of thing wouldn't happen.

Ginkgo
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Re: My Philosophy of Mind Theory

Post by Ginkgo » Thu Jan 01, 2015 9:20 pm

fenedara wrote:
My theory is below:

Humans experience things like sight, hearing, the other senses, thoughts, and feelings. We experience these things from a first person perspective. Said another way, humans have subjective experience. The way humans experience these things is a very special thing. Humans do not experience things the way that a rock experiences heat or the way a computer experiences running a video game. Humans experience things in a way that makes them a sort of an 'output channel' or a 'viewer'. If nothing experienced things like humans experience things, it would be like a TV that is on in an empty room with no one watching it. Humans experience things in a way that turns them into first person perspectives.
You probably have this in mind

http://www.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cartesian_theater

fenedra wrote:
In fact, I think the way humans experience things is such a special thing that I don't think it could possibly be a physical thing. I think it would be possible for human subjective experience to be something that relies completely on the physical realm to determine how many separate entities are experiencing things and which of them are experiencing what at what times, but I still think the subjective experience itself can't be physical. Physical things are things like atoms, molecules, sub-atomic particles, and forces and I don't think subjective experience could be another physical thing like those things. If subjective experience is non-physical, then I think the entity that is experiencing things is probably also non-physical. If it's non-physical then it can't simply be the human body or brain that is experiencing things, it must be some other non-physical entity that is sort of attached to the human brain. I'll call this entity 'the experiencer', but I think it could also be called 'the soul' or possibly 'consciousness' or 'the mind'. The definition of this 'experiencer' is that it is something that experiences everything in the conscious mind of the human brain it is attached to.
Physicalists say it is a physical thing, while dualists (like yourself) say the mental is a different type of substance because it has properties that are distinctly different to atoms and molecules.
fenedara wrote:
If this type of experience is a non-physical thing then that would also mean that the physical behavior of the human brain is not the same thing as subjective experience. So even when a person sees something, thinks something as a result, and then says something, all of that is physical behavior of the brain and body and subjective experience is a separate thing from that. Basically the brain is a sort of a biological computer and is only involved in subjective experience in that the experiencer experiences different things depending on the physical state of the brain. The experiencer is not the thing that actually controls the body. When the experiencer experiences thinking something, that is actually a completely different thing from when the brain thinks something. The experiencer is dependant on the physical realm for determining what it experiences, but doesn't actually have any impact on the physical realm. The experiencer is kind of like an output channel so it accepts output from the physical realm (specifically the physical state of the human brain), but it doesn't send output to the physical realm.
This might help

http://www.iep.utm.edu/hard-con/

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HexHammer
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Re: My Philosophy of Mind Theory

Post by HexHammer » Thu Jan 01, 2015 11:34 pm

Read up on psychology and intelligences.

OP is nothing but unqualified guesswork.

fenedara
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Re: My Philosophy of Mind Theory

Post by fenedara » Fri Jan 02, 2015 12:18 am

@HexHammer

In your post, what does "OP" mean? Are you referring to my explanation of my theory?

Gee
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Re: My Philosophy of Mind Theory

Post by Gee » Fri Jan 02, 2015 1:28 am

Fenedara;

Hi. Welcome to the forum.

OP means Original Post or Original Poster.

I also study philosophy of mind and consciousness and would like to suggest a few ideas.

First I think that it is always a mistake to separate human consciousness from other species' consciousness. You seem to give too much weight to a person's speech, in that you think that a person, who says they are conscious, therefore is conscious. A robot can say that it is conscious. Does that mean it is so? Also consider that many species have language. Just because we are too dumb to understand them does not mean that they are not capable of understanding us, or thinking that we are stupid, or not conscious. It goes both ways so a better test than language is in order.

My thoughts on this are simple. ALL life has a survival instinct. This means that all life, this includes plant life, will do anything and everything that it is capable of in order to protect and preserve itself. This is the best indicator that I know of and implies that all life has a self. Otherwise there would be nothing to protect and preserve. Therefore, all life has a subjective nature, whether it is aware of that nature or not is another question -- but their subjectivity exists.

Regarding your physical v non-physical ideas, consider: The logical rational aspect of mind, the part that is self directed, where we plan and organize and respond to life, is primarily influenced by our sense data and reflects our knowledge of a physical world. This is the aspect that we refer to when we say that we are conscious, or aware of being aware.

The sub/unconscious aspect of mind is not rational, logical in the normal sense, and is not directed by us. It is reactionary, works through emotion, and we have little or no knowledge of what it is doing until it acts. It is also interesting to note that the sub/unconscious aspect of mind has no knowledge of time and space, so it processes information in an entirely different way by grouping same and difference, self and other, good and bad. It seems to work off of attraction and repulsion. Since it has no concept of time and space, it is my thought that it is not in time and space -- or non-physical.

Many people seem to have the idea that the unconscious is a kind of automated holder for the left-overs that the conscious mind can not always deal with -- an idea that has been implied by neurology. I doubt that this is so because the sub/unconscious aspect of mind came first according to evolution. So the rational aspect of mind evolved out of the sub/unconscious.

So an understanding of psychology and the aspects of mind may help you to sort out some of your ideas. When I first started in forums, I decided to read the entire Chapter on Consciousness in the online SEP (The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy). It will give you a lot of information and ideas, and it is easy to find -- just Google it.

Gingko is a good source for learning about what is already known.
Some of your ideas compare to some of the Eastern philosophies.
You might like Greylorn's Beon Theory, which talks about the beon that seems to be something akin to your ideas regarding experience.

Gee

fenedara
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Re: My Philosophy of Mind Theory

Post by fenedara » Sat Jan 03, 2015 8:37 pm

I would like to thank everyone who posted for their feedback. I will probably eventually read that article on "the hard problem" (this one http://www.iep.utm.edu/hard-con/), but it is fairly dense and long so it will probably take me a while to get around to reading it.

I think it would be particularly useful if I could get feedback on the first paragraph of my theory. That is this paragraph:
fenedara wrote: Humans experience things like sight, hearing, the other senses, thoughts, and feelings. We experience these things from a first person perspective. Said another way, humans have subjective experience. The way humans experience these things is a very special thing. Humans do not experience things the way that a rock experiences heat or the way a computer experiences running a video game. Humans experience things in a way that makes them a sort of an 'output channel' or a 'viewer'. If nothing experienced things like humans experience things, it would be like a TV that is on in an empty room with no one watching it. Humans experience things in a way that turns them into first person perspectives.
I would like to know if people agree or disagree with this paragraph and why or why not.

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HexHammer
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Re: My Philosophy of Mind Theory

Post by HexHammer » Sun Jan 04, 2015 2:35 am

HexHammer wrote:Read up on psychology and intelligences.

OP is nothing but unqualified guesswork.
fenedara wrote:@HexHammer

In your post, what does "OP" mean? Are you referring to my explanation of my theory?
Where the heck do I ask that?

Ginkgo
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Re: My Philosophy of Mind Theory

Post by Ginkgo » Sun Jan 04, 2015 7:25 am

fenedara wrote: Humans experience things like sight, hearing, the other senses, thoughts, and feelings. We experience these things from a first person perspective. Said another way, humans have subjective experience. The way humans experience these things is a very special thing.
This is basically what Dennett calls the Cartesian Theatre. I did post you a link. Basically, the idea is a common sense view of consciousness. We receive all of this sensory information that travels through the nervous system to the brain. It is all about neural spike trains. All of this sensory information must end up somewhere in the brain where we can interpret the input. The obvious explanation is that it goes to the neural core of consciousness where the first person observer views this information as experience. Even though this sounds reasonable it is actually wrong. There is no privileged observer looking out upon the world.

Have another look at the Cartesian link I posted.
fenedara wrote: Humans do not experience things the way that a rock experiences heat or the way a computer experiences running a video game. Humans experience things in a way that makes them a sort of an 'output channel' or a 'viewer'. If nothing experienced things like humans experience things, it would be like a TV that is on in an empty room with no one watching it. Humans experience things in a way that turns them into first person perspectives.
Rocks and computers don't experience anything. There is nothing it is like to be a rock or a computer. Rocks don't complain about the heat and computers can, at best, only simulate experience. You know what it is like to be you and I know what it is like to be me, but a rock doesn't know what it is like to be a rock and a computer doesn't know what it is like to be a computer. Hence they have no experience.

Again, I would draw you attention to the Cartesian Theatre because it explains your "no one watching" idea. Dennett is actually correct. Modern science confirms that the consciousness brain is actually dis-unified. There is no first person observer to be found. Strange as it sounds, no one is watching.

Fortunately this is not the end of the story.

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Re: My Philosophy of Mind Theory

Post by Greylorn Ell » Thu Jan 08, 2015 12:19 am

fenedara wrote:I have a philosophy of mind theory that I would like to get feedback on if anyone would be interested in doing that. Unfortunately, it is kind of long.

A few years ago I discovered something related to philosophy involving subjective experience that seemed very impressive to me. At first I thought it was more of a religious thing than a philosophy thing, but after talking to a few people about it, one of them suggested that it was related to philosophy. After that, I talked to a person with a degree in philosophy who confirmed that it was related to philosophy and that more specifically it was related to a branch of philosophy called philosophy of mind. From what I've learned about philosophy of mind, it seems that the theory that I came up with is most similar to a theory called epiphenomenalism, but is not the same as that theory. In particular, it seems like epiphenomenalism is different from my theory in that epiphenomenalism doesn't provide an explanation of how humans are aware of mental events if mental events have no impact on the physical world where-as my theory provides an explanation for this. I think my theory is potentially impressive because it is something that pretty much every human has had enough information to discover for a very long time and no one has discovered it and spread it. I also think it is impressive because it indicates very strongly that the world was not created or set up completely chaotically and that instead there is at least some small bit of order built into the world.

I have explained my theory to approximately 7 people so far. All but one of those people disagreed with some part of my theory and the one that agreed with me didn't think that my theory was impressive. I don't completely understand the reasons these people didn't agree with my theory or think it was impressive, but I would like to get more feedback. I would like to either understand why my theory is wrong or unimpressive or I would like other people to understand why my theory is correct and impressive. I would also like to know if someone else has already discovered my theory, and, if so, what it is called. Additionally, I think my explanation of my theory might be somewhat difficult to understand, so it would also be useful for me to get advice and feedback on how to improve my explanation.

My theory is below:

Humans experience things like sight, hearing, the other senses, thoughts, and feelings. We experience these things from a first person perspective. Said another way, humans have subjective experience. The way humans experience these things is a very special thing. Humans do not experience things the way that a rock experiences heat or the way a computer experiences running a video game. Humans experience things in a way that makes them a sort of an 'output channel' or a 'viewer'. If nothing experienced things like humans experience things, it would be like a TV that is on in an empty room with no one watching it. Humans experience things in a way that turns them into first person perspectives.

In fact, I think the way humans experience things is such a special thing that I don't think it could possibly be a physical thing. I think it would be possible for human subjective experience to be something that relies completely on the physical realm to determine how many separate entities are experiencing things and which of them are experiencing what at what times, but I still think the subjective experience itself can't be physical. Physical things are things like atoms, molecules, sub-atomic particles, and forces and I don't think subjective experience could be another physical thing like those things. If subjective experience is non-physical, then I think the entity that is experiencing things is probably also non-physical. If it's non-physical then it can't simply be the human body or brain that is experiencing things, it must be some other non-physical entity that is sort of attached to the human brain. I'll call this entity 'the experiencer', but I think it could also be called 'the soul' or possibly 'consciousness' or 'the mind'. The definition of this 'experiencer' is that it is something that experiences everything in the conscious mind of the human brain it is attached to.

If this type of experience is a non-physical thing then that would also mean that the physical behavior of the human brain is not the same thing as subjective experience. So even when a person sees something, thinks something as a result, and then says something, all of that is physical behavior of the brain and body and subjective experience is a separate thing from that. Basically the brain is a sort of a biological computer and is only involved in subjective experience in that the experiencer experiences different things depending on the physical state of the brain. The experiencer is not the thing that actually controls the body. When the experiencer experiences thinking something, that is actually a completely different thing from when the brain thinks something. The experiencer is dependant on the physical realm for determining what it experiences, but doesn't actually have any impact on the physical realm. The experiencer is kind of like an output channel so it accepts output from the physical realm (specifically the physical state of the human brain), but it doesn't send output to the physical realm.

However, if the experiencer doesn't have any impact on the physical realm, then there is the question of how humans are aware that they experience things since that awareness is part of the activity of the brain which is part of the physical realm. I think the most likely possibility is basically fate, or, more specifically, that the world was specifically created or set up such that humans would eventually end up with genetic code that would result in brain activity that would make humans think that they are experiencing things. Another possibility is that the experiencer's attachment to the human brain has a sort of an almost magical quality to it that changes the physical behavior of the brain such that the brain is aware of the experiencer's subjective experience. Even if these 2 possiblities are wrong, I think it is at least very likely that humans got awareness of subjective experience because it is somehow part of the way the world was created or set up. I don't think it is very likely that humans just happened to randomly get this awareness that lines up with the fact that there are actual non-physical experiencers attached to humans. If I am correct about this, then that would mean that at least to that small extent the world was not created or set up entirely randomly or chaotically, which I think might be the most important discovery derived from this theory.

That is pretty much the entirety of my theory. Below are some additional implications and details that I don't necessarily need much feedback on.

There are a few other interesting things about the human awareness of subjective experience. First of all, even if the experiencer is an entity that is attached to the brain but separate from it, the awareness is such that it gives the brain the impression that the brain is both the brain and the experiencer at the same time. Secondly, the awareness doesn't just indicate to the brain that it is experiencing things subjectively, it also indicates to the brain what it is that the experiencer is experiencing by giving the brain the impression that it is experiencing those things. If I didn't know from science that the brain controls the body, this would have made me think that the experiencer controls the body through a sort of almost magical type of influence. Of course, since the experiencer experiences everything in the conscious mind of the human's brain, the experiencer will also experience this awareness that suggests that it is experiencing things and it will be true when the experiencer experiences it because the experiencer is the thing that experiences things even though it wasn't true for the brain. Also, the experiencer only experiences what is in the conscious mind of the brain, so there is lots of stuff that the brain does that is not part of the conscious mind which the experiencer is not experiencing. Conveniently, the state of the conscious mind of the brain that the experiencer experiences is the same as what the physical human that the brain controls will say it is experiencing if it is asked and responds truthfully. This means that the awareness of the experiencer can theoretically be communicated between humans easily.

There is also, of course, the question of whether or not animals experience things subjectively like humans do. I don't think there is really anything that would suggest either that they have subjective experience or not. Theoretically, if we could figure out a way to ask an animal if it has subjective experience, then it could tell us, but they are all probably too stupid to understand the question well enough to give us an accurate answer. There is indication that animals have thoughts, sensations, and emotions which would seem to suggest that they also have subjective experience because in humans those things seem to go along with subjective experience, but I don't think it is really possible to tell just from that.

Additionally, there is the question of whether or not a computer AI could experience things subjectively like humans do. I don't think there is any reason to believe that a computer AI could have subjective experience. We know that humans probably have subjective experience because of the awareness of subjective experience that human brains have, but there is no reason to think that a computer AI could gain the awareness of subjective experience that humans have. Even if a computer AI were designed to have the awareness of subjective experience that human brains have, I still don't think that would suggest that the computer AI actually has subjective experience. It seems like the awareness is a sort of a message from the world (or a god if there is one) that is probably written in the genetic code of humans. Even if someone else wrote the same "message" in the source code of a computer AI, it wouldn't necessarily be true because the world didn't write that message. This could also be true of a geneticly engineered being. If it turned out that animals didn't have subjective experience and someone genetically engineered some animal like a dog such that it had the awareness of subjective experience, the dog still wouldn't necessarily have subjective experience. This also brings up the question of how much someone could use genetic engineering to alter the DNA of a human without the human losing subjective experience (even if the awareness of subjective experience remains). Beyond a certain point, the genetically engineered human might as well have been a genetically engineered animal with the awareness of subjective experience added on. The interesting thing here is that the rule for what has subjective experience and what does not isn't really completely known, yet it at least seems very likely that humans have subjective experience and that if an animal could be asked if it has awareness of subjective experience and said yes, then it would probably also have subjective experience.

Another related oddity is that before a human thinks that the experiencer exists, the human cares primarily about the welfare of the physical human, but after a human starts thinking that the experiencer exists, the human cares about the welfare of the experiencer instead. So, for example, if a human were given the opportunity to die in such a way that the experiencer would re-attach itself to a different human that is under better circumstances, the human would want to do this because it would be good for the experiencer even though the physical human would die. Of course, in real life, it seems like the welfare of the experiencer is always completely dependant on the welfare of the physical human it is attached to, so that type of thing wouldn't happen.
Believe it or not, others have written on this subject, more coherently and with less extraneous blather. Consider reading more books.

Greylorn

fenedara
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Re: My Philosophy of Mind Theory

Post by fenedara » Thu Jan 08, 2015 10:30 pm

@Greylorn Ell

If I had massive amounts of free time, reading more on the subject would certainly be a good idea, but I don't, so I'm trying to figure out why people do not agree with my theory without spending lots of time on it.

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Re: My Philosophy of Mind Theory

Post by Ginkgo » Fri Jan 09, 2015 5:36 am

fenedara, the paragraph you put up for examination is more or less correct. It is been viewed as correct as long as people are willing to accept the materialist implications of Cartesian dualism. Prima facie it seems correct, but it isn't. Have you seen the movie Pacific Rim? If you have then you would understand the fallacy of the Jaeger programme.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5guMumPFBag

That's the Cartesian theatre!!!
Last edited by Ginkgo on Fri Jan 09, 2015 8:20 am, edited 1 time in total.

fenedara
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Re: My Philosophy of Mind Theory

Post by fenedara » Fri Jan 09, 2015 6:07 am

@Ginkgo

I don't understand the reference to Pacific Rim at all. I have seen the movie, but I don't see how the Jaegar program is a fallacy. I mean I see how the entire movie is fantastic and unrealistic, but not specifically the Jaegar program.

Also, it seems the Cartesian Theater doesn't seem completely relevant to what I am talking about because I am not saying that the thing that has the property of being like a viewer or an output channel is anything physical (in fact I'm saying that it is not physical) and I am saying that it is 'output only' so it wouldn't process sensory information and make decisions based on that information. All it would do is experience what is in the conscious mind of the human it is attached to. It would have no impact on that human's brain. The Cartesian Theater seems somewhat similar to what I am talking about, but not a lot.

Also, I don't think the neural correlates of consciousness would need to be exclusively local to some physical area of the brain in order for what the experiencer experiences to be dependant on their state. I don't see any reason that the output that is sent to the experiencer couldn't come from all over the brain. So I don't see any reason that the neural correlates of consciousness occupying a wide area of the brain would disprove my theory.

Would it be correct to say that even though you don't think that subjective experience gives humans the property of being like a viewer or an output channel, you do think that there is something that it is like to be a human and have subjective experience? If that is correct then it seems like there should be some way that I can explain how there being something that it is like to have subjective experience implies that the subjective experience gives humans the property of being like a viewer or an output channel, but I haven't been able to figure that out.

Ginkgo
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Joined: Mon Apr 30, 2012 2:47 pm

Re: My Philosophy of Mind Theory

Post by Ginkgo » Fri Jan 09, 2015 7:05 am

fenedara wrote:@Ginkgo

I don't understand the reference to Pacific Rim at all. I have seen the movie, but I don't see how the Jaegar program is a fallacy. I mean I see how the entire movie is fantastic and unrealistic, but not specifically the Jaegar program.
Yes, perhaps my use of the term "fallacy" wasn't what I was looking for.

I guess I was wondering what the robots were experiencing when they were powered up but they had not yet received their pilot. The answer is they were not experiencing anything even though all lights were on and all circuits functioning. In other words, it is possible these robots could conceivably walk the walk and talk the talk without a man in their heads controlling and making decisions. It is possible they could operate on automata, but without a little man in their heads they have no experience.
fenedara wrote:

Also, it seems the Cartesian Theater doesn't seem completely relevant to what I am talking about because I am not saying that the thing that has the property of being like a viewer or an output channel is anything physical (in fact I'm saying that it is not physical) and I am saying that it is 'output only' so it wouldn't process sensory information and make decisions based on that information. All it would do is experience what is in the conscious mind of the human it is attached to. It would have no impact on that human's brain. The Cartesian Theater seems somewhat similar to what I am talking about, but not a lot.
The "thing" doing the experiencing doesn't have to be physical. If the viewer in the head is a non-physical entity then what you have is substance dualism.

I am not sure how one can be a "viewer" of information and not be an "experiencer" at the same time. It is only possible if one were a programmed machine that lacks experience.
fenedara wrote:
Also, I don't think the neural correlates of consciousness would need to be exclusively local to some physical area of the brain in order for what the experiencer experiences to be dependant on their state. I don't see any reason that the output that is sent to the experiencer couldn't come from all over the brain. So I don't see any reason that the neural correlates of consciousness occupying a wide area of the brain would disprove my theory.
That's true, but the assumption is there is an experiencer (physical or non-physical) somewhere in the drivers seat.
fenedara wrote:
Would it be correct to say that even though you don't think that subjective experience gives humans the property of being like a viewer or an output channel, you do think that there is something that it is like to be a human and have subjective experience? If that is correct then it seems like there should be some way that I can explain how there being something that it is like to have subjective experience implies that the subjective experience gives humans the property of being like a viewer or an output channel, but I haven't been able to figure that out.
That's pretty much what I think. I am not suggesting the subjective point of view in consciousness is some type of illusion. Rather, it is an attempt to say that it is very hard to pin down and it is not as straightforward as it seems.

There are a lot of people in the field trying to figure out where the first person perspective comes from. Jesse Prinz with his "Intermediate-Level Representation" is a good source of information in this respect.

Anyway keep working on it.

roydop
Posts: 217
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Re: My Philosophy of Mind Theory

Post by roydop » Tue Jan 13, 2015 2:47 am

The experiencer is found in the thought-free state. The answer to all questions is the transcendence of the questions.

I know I'm repeating this ad nauseam, but it's the answer. Mind will never find what it is looking for within mind. Hence the blah blah blah that just goes on forever.

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