Qualia

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

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Wyman
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Re: Qualia

Post by Wyman »

Finally! We agree. Therefore, my part in this conversation is over - thanks.
raw_thought
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Re: Qualia

Post by raw_thought »

My point is that according to quantum mechanics matter is more like mind then what we call physical.
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Re: Qualia

Post by raw_thought »

" The universe begins to look more like a great thought than like a great machine."
James Jean
Physicist
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Royal Medal of the Royal Society
Knighted
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Re: Qualia

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Arising_uk wrote:
raw_thought wrote:What he wants? That is gibberish! That is a first person narrative!
Not if you accept Dennett's idea of hetrophenomenology.
Dennett's definition of hetrophenomenology is exclusively a third person narrative.
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Arising_uk
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Re: Qualia

Post by Arising_uk »

raw_thought wrote:Dennett's definition of hetrophenomenology is exclusively a third person narrative.
From what I've read so far, one that accepts a first-person narrative as part of the persons hetrophenomenology.
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Re: Qualia

Post by raw_thought »

Then he accepts qualia. First person narratives describe private experiences.
Yes, Dennett is one of the most disingenuous philosophers. The philosophy professors at the university he visited said that he said that when he says that an "on" light switch knows that the light is on,he says so to create an audience for himself. He told them that he does not believe such nonsense. Outrageous statements get coverage.
Yes, I did not hear him say that so it is hearsay. However, I know the profs and they seem very trustworthy.
Another example*, he says that he believes that we have feelings and then says that we don't.
* That is from this thread. I even give a link to the source.
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SpheresOfBalance
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Re: Qualia

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raw_thought wrote:Quale= a subjective private experience.
Incorrect, rather: "In philosophy, qualia (/ˈkwɑːliə/ or /ˈkweɪliə/; singular form: quale) are individual instances of subjective, conscious experience." --wikipedia--
You're getting tripped up on consciousness, as if it's some kind of ghost in the machine, instead of simply an electro-chemical (PHYSICAL), response.

My visualized (imagined ) triangle is either a quale or it is not.
If it is not,then it is not a private experience. If it is not a private experience then others can see it (with cat scans or whatever).
There is not a physical image of a triangle in my brain when I visualize a triangle.. Note that I am not saying that my neurons firing do not cause me to visualize a triangle.Cause does not equal definition.
If there is no physical triangle in my brain that can be seen by others it is private, a quale!
Of course one can claim that one cannot visualize a triangle. I know that I can Can't you?
Note that I do not even have to know that it is a triangle for it to be a quale. I know what wind in my face feels like,even if I do not know that wind is air particles moving.
The coherence of the concept

Philosophers and non-philosophers differ in their intuitions about what consciousness is.[22] While most people have a strong intuition for the existence of what they refer to as consciousness,[23] skeptics argue that this intuition is false, either because the concept of consciousness is intrinsically incoherent, or because our intuitions about it are based in illusions. Gilbert Ryle, for example, argued that traditional understanding of consciousness depends on a Cartesian dualist outlook that improperly distinguishes between mind and body, or between mind and world. He proposed that we speak not of minds, bodies, and the world, but of individuals, or persons, acting in the world. Thus, by speaking of "consciousness" we end up misleading ourselves by thinking that there is any sort of thing as consciousness separated from behavioral and linguistic understandings.[24] More generally, many philosophers and scientists have been unhappy about the difficulty of producing a definition that does not involve circularity or fuzziness.[21] --wikipedia--


There is no ghost in the machine to be called consciousness, instead it is a function of an electrochemical process of sensing, juxtaposed with memories of previous sensing (experience). It is physical, not mystical. ;)
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hammock
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Re: Qualia

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(to Arising_uk), raw_thought wrote:Then he [Dennett] accepts qualia. First person narratives describe private experiences.
Not exactly. His heterophenomenological method might accept qualia, but only as beliefs of the person reporting. Because his behaviorism roots compel that a neutral attitude be adhered to when it comes to science examining first person reports. IOW, taking reports themselves as data, but accepting no claims about their truth, because reports can be error-prone. David Chalmers responded with:

Dennett "challenges" me to name an experiment that "transcends" the heterophenomenological method. But of course both views can accommodate experiments equally: every time I say we're using a verbal report or introspective judgment as a guide to first-person data, he can say we're using it as third-person data, and vice versa. So the difference between the views doesn't lie in the range of experiments "compatible" with them. Rather, it lies in the way that experimental results are interpreted. And I think the interpretation I'm giving (on which reports are given prima facie credence as a guide to conscious experience) is by far the most common attitude among scientists in the field.

Witness the debate about unconscious perception among cognitive psychologists about precisely which third-person measures (direct report, discrimination, etc) are the best guide to the presence of conscious perception. Here, third-person data are being used as a (fallible) guide to first-person data about consciousness, which are of primary interest. On the heterophenomenological view, this debate is without much content: some states subserve report, some subserve discrimination, etc, and that's about all there is to say. I think something like this is Dennett's attitude to those debates, but it's not the attitude of most of the scientists working in the field.

In any case, the fundamental reasons for rejecting the heterophenomenological view lie prior to these questions about experiments. Fundamental question: Does explaining behavior and other third-person data suffice on its own to explain conscious experience? I think there are overwhelming grounds to say no (see e.g. "Moving Forward on the Problem of Consciousness"). The question is then: given that this is so, can there be a science of consciousness anyway? I think so, as long as we accept that science can deal with first-person data, and as long as we allow that verbal reports and the like can be used as an indirect guide to the first-person data about consciousness.

raw_thought wrote:Yes, Dennett is one of the most disingenuous philosophers.

Or we have to remember his earlier stipulations, to avoid a judgement of inconsistency later on his part. For instance, in Quining Qualia, Dennett seemed to grant at the outset the "reality of conscious experience", as he put it. But he wanted nothing to do with qualia that are subjective, or experience having properties referred to as "ineffable, intrinsic, private, directly apprehensible". When not taking into account his neutering of that traditional take on experience and its attributes, he might indeed appear to contradict himself after such an opening salute.
Daniel Dennett wrote:"Which idea of qualia am I trying to extirpate? Everything real has properties, and since I don't deny the reality of conscious experience, I grant that conscious experience has properties. I grant moreover that each person's states of consciousness have properties in virtue of which those states have the experiential content that they do. That is to say, whenever someone experiences something as being one way rather than another, this is true in virtue of some property of something happening in them at the time, but these properties are so unlike the properties traditionally imputed to consciousness that it would be grossly misleading to call any of them the long-sought qualia. Qualia are supposed to be special properties, in some hard-to-define way. My claim--which can only come into focus as we proceed--is that conscious experience has no properties that are special in any of the ways qualia have been supposed to be special. . . . I want to make it just as uncomfortable for anyone to talk of qualia--or "raw feels" or "phenomenal properties" or "subjective and intrinsic properties" or "the qualitative character" of experience--with the standard presumption that they, and everyone else, knows what on earth they are talking about.

. . . My challenge strikes some theorists as outrageous or misguided because they think they have a much blander and hence less vulnerable notion of qualia to begin with. They think I am setting up and knocking down a strawman, and ask, in effect: "Who said qualia are ineffable, intrinsic, private, directly apprehensible ways things seem to one?" Since my suggested fourfold essence of qualia may strike many readers as tendentious, it may be instructive to consider, briefly, an appparently milder alternative: qualia are simply "the qualitative or phenomenal features of sense experience[s], in virtue of having which they resemble and differ from each other, qualitatively, in the ways they do." (Shoemaker, 1982, p. 367) Surely I do not mean to deny those features!

I reply: it all depends on what "qualitative or phenomenal" comes to. Shoemaker contrasts qualitative similarity and difference with "intentional" similarity and difference-- similarity and difference of the properties an experience represents or is "of". That is clear enough, but what then of "phenomenal"? Among the non-intentional (and hence qualitative?) properties of my visual states are their physiological properties. Might these very properties be the qualia Shoemaker speaks of? It is supposed to be obvious, I take it, that these sorts of features are ruled out, because they are not "accessible to introspection" (Shoemaker, private correspondence). These are features of my visual state, perhaps, but not of my visual experience. They are not phenomenal properties.

But then another non-intentional similarity some of my visual states share is that they tend to make me think about going to bed. I think this feature of them is accessible to introspection--on any ordinary, pre-theoretical construal. Is that a phenomenal property or not? The term "phenomenal" means nothing obvious and untendentious to me, and looks suspiciously like a gesture in the direction leading back to ineffable, private, directly apprehensible ways things seem to one.

. . . The difference between "eliminative materialism"--of which my position on qualia is an instance--and a "reductive" materialism that takes on the burden of identifying the problematic item in terms of the foundational materialistic theory is thus often best seen not so much as a doctrinal issue as a tactical issue: how might we most gracefully or effectively enlighten the confused in this instance? See my discussion of "fatigues" in the Introduction to Brainstorms (Dennett, 1978a), and earlier, my discussion of what the enlightened ought to say about the metaphysical status of sakes and voices in Content and Consciousness (Dennett, 1969), ch. 1. 3. The plausibility of this concession depends less on a high regard for the technology than on a proper skepticism about human powers. . . .
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Arising_uk
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Re: Qualia

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raw_thought wrote:Then he accepts qualia. First person narratives describe private experiences. ...
I'm beginning to think you haven't actually read his book?
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SpheresOfBalance
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Re: Qualia

Post by SpheresOfBalance »

Arising_uk wrote:
raw_thought wrote:Then he accepts qualia. First person narratives describe private experiences. ...
I'm beginning to think you haven't actually read his book?
Or it could have been a comprehension issue. Never continue reading when you come upon a word/concept you're unsure of, always look it up/research it, before continuing to read.
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Re: Qualia

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How can a predicate exist without a subject?
Materialists believe in predicates. However, the subject (existence) is not real for them because it cannot be quantified. You cannot point at existence. Suppose, I point at a rock as an example of something that exists. That tells me nothing about what existence is because my pointing does not differentiate the rock from anything else.
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Re: Qualia

Post by raw_thought »

SpheresOfBalance wrote:
Arising_uk wrote:
raw_thought wrote:Then he accepts qualia. First person narratives describe private experiences. ...
I'm beginning to think you haven't actually read his book?
Or it could have been a comprehension issue. Never continue reading when you come upon a word/concept you're unsure of, always look it up/research it, before continuing to read.
Its actually very simple. Dennett says that he accepts first person narratives if they can be verified (certified, reified). by a second person narrative. In other words, a first person narrative is only real if another first person narrative verifies it. The second person narrative is a first person narrative in the sense that he/she experiences it personally, subjectively and privately. *
Dennett implies that reality requires subjective validation (qualia)!!!
If one sees behaviour that corroborates the first person narrative then the first person narrative is real. Talk about magic! Only by seeing something makes it real! Dennett's "argument" is a bunch of self contradictory statements!
* They experience seeing the subjects behaviour. However, that experience is subjective. No one can see the subject's behaviour in the person's brain that witnesses the subject's behaviour.
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Re: Qualia

Post by raw_thought »

In other words, Dennett woke up after sex with his wife and asked,"It was good for you. Was it good for me?"
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Re: Qualia

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The long quote you gave shows how Dennett contradicts himself.
Consciousness without subjective experience???????? What on earth is that? It is like a square circle.
What on eatth does he mean when he says that his eliminative materialism is tactical rather then doctrinal? * I guess that means that he does not believe in eliminative materialism, he just wants to convince you of it.
When one takes the time to really read Dennett, one discovers as Searle, Chalmers and the profs at my university have, that he contradicts himself and cannot be taken seriously.
* If eliminative materialism is not true in all cases then it is not eliminative materialism. If there is just one case of qualia, then eliminative materialism is false. Besides Dennett has made the statement that there are NO qualia. But then again he says a lot that he does not mean.
I guess he means that one can be an eliminative materialist that believes in qualia! :) :) :?
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Re: Qualia

Post by raw_thought »

Consciousness is private, immediate and ineffable. That is its properties. Can you read my mind?(private). Would it make sense to say (this one is from Wittgenstein) I think I am in agony but I might be mistaken.(immediate). Can you explain what "blue" is to a person that has never seen anything(ineffable)
To say that consciousness is and only is brain states is to deny that consciousness exists.
Last edited by raw_thought on Fri May 15, 2015 8:27 am, edited 1 time in total.
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