The Nature of Consciousness

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RCSaunders
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The Nature of Consciousness

Post by RCSaunders » Tue Jul 09, 2019 3:05 pm

Consciousness is perception, which is the only kind of consciousness we or any other creature has. Physical existence is that existence organisms are directly conscious of, the world they see, hear, feel, smell, and taste. By perception is meant the seeing, hearing, feeling, smelling, and tasting as well as interoception (the direct perception of internal states of the physical body).

Perceptual consciousness is an attribute of living organisms. It is the attribute of life that makes the additional attribute of consciousness possible in some organisms. Consciousness is not possible without the attribute life. There is no reason for or possibility of consciousness in a mere physical entity. Consciousness is what makes the behavior necessary, for those organisms that are conscious, to sustain themselves as the kind of organisms they are.

There are at least eight characteristics of conscious perception that demonstrate that consciousness, like life, is not a physical attribute: 1. Individual and Private 2. Continuity 3. Unity 4. Consciousness of Physical not Physical 5. Tasting is the Only Test 6. Pain 7. No Physical Description and 8. TV in an Empty Room.

1. Individual and Private

Consciousness in all other creatures except ourselves is implied, because every conscious organism has its own consciousness and no organism can be conscious of any other organism's consciousness.

While the privacy of consciousness is generally understood, it's significance to philosophy is not always apparent. It is because consciousness is experienced privately that its nature is frequently neglected. What we mean by "being conscious," the actual experience itself, can only be known individually. Anything in the physical world that can be perceived, can be perceived by anyone. No one can perceive your consciousness or my consciousness, as we experience it. Technically, we cannot even "perceive" our own consciousness. We do not know we are conscious by perceiving it, (seeing it, hearing it, feeling it, etc.), we know it, because we are conscious. We do not know we can see by seeing our seeing, we know we can see because we do.

2. Continuity

Conscious organisms have only one consciousness and it is the same consciousness from moment to moment, day to day, and year to year. It is the same consciousness from the moment it becomes consciousness until the organisms dies. It is because consciousness is a characteristic of life, not the physical aspects of the organism, this is possible. Notice, that the physical characteristics of an organism can change. Hypothetically, all of the physical parts could be changed, but it would still be the same organism, because it would still be the same life process and the same consciousness. It is the life process that identifies the organism as a particular organism, not the physical components, and consciousness is an attribute of life.

Consciousness does not cease to exist when one sleeps, or when under an anesthetic, or when "knocked out" by a blow to the head. By analogy, in those cases, consciousness is like the life of a seed. A seed is a living thing, although it does not exhibit any of the usual characteristics of life externally; we say it is "dormant" because under proper conditions it will germinate and grow. If irradiated, or exposed to certain temperatures it "dies" and cannot be germinated.

Consciousness, during sleep or when anesthetized, is like the life of a seed, dormant, because when the anesthesia wears off or the hypothalamus is stimulated, consciousness revives. If consciousness truly ceases, however, nothing can revive it, and the individual who was that consciousness ceases to exist.

I Am My Consciousness

For human beings, one's consciousness is what is meant by "I." One remains the same person (individual or "I") no matter what other things change, because one's consciousness is always the same consciousness. However little one knows or how much one learns, no matter what changes there are to the physical aspects of one's body, no matter what one does or how long one lives, from moment to moment, day to day, and year to year, one is the same person, because it is the same consciousness. There is no physical aspect of one's being that cannot be changed that can change one's conscious identity, because one's conscious identity is one's consciousness itself.

From the moment one opens their eyes for the first time to the moment they close them for the last time, there is only one consciousness. One's existence as a person, their identity as a human being, is the human being's consciousness. If one's consciousness should cease, whatever happens to the body, the individual ceases to exist as a human being.

That identity which is one's consciousness, cannot be discovered or described by any physical attribute or any physical or biological action because consciousness is not a physical attribute—it is an attribute of life.

3. Unity

For any organism, there is only one consciousness and it is the same consciousness that perceives what is seen, tasted, heard, smelled, and felt. It is the same consciousness that feels the wheel of the car with the hands, the accelerator pedal with the foot, sees the light change from red to green, and hears the music on the radio all simultaneously. This aspect of consciousness is almost never recognized. It is one reason, for example, no computer or computer program will ever create consciousness. It would be impossible, at the physical level, to make all the discrete physical events required for detection of separate phenomena be a single phenomenon. Because consciousness is an aspect of life, however, which is not physical and not limited by physical attributes, such as discreteness, the same consciousness can be conscious of an indefinite number of things at the same time.

Furthermore, every individual is only one consciousness, one person, conscious of what one is thinking, perceiving (internally and externally), and what one is feeling emotionally, as well as conscious of all the other things one is aware of, simultaneously and continuously. There is only one consciousness.

To some extent one can determine what one will be conscious of by where they look and what they do, such as turning on or off a radio, or opening a book. In those cases, one is merely changing what there is available for one to be conscious of. But one can also focus the attention on some things one is conscious of and ignore some others, even though one never ceases to be conscious of everything available to consciousness at any time.

It would be impossible, at the physical level, to make all the discrete physical events required for detection of separate phenomena be a single event. What that means, is, there is no physical system which is able to detect sounds (microphones, for example) images (a video camera, for example), pressure and weight (a transponder system, for example) temperature (an electronic thermometer for example), movement (an electro-gyroscope for example) which can all be recognized in all its detail as a single event or process. The information that all these detection systems provide, at the physical level, must forever remain separated and discrete. The laws of physics and information theory, both determined by the principles that govern physical existence, exclude the possibility that this information can be integrated into a single thing or phenomenon, like one's consciousness. If one's consciousness were a phenomenon of the physical, it would not be a single thing, but a collection of separate and discrete things. At the physical level, the unity of consciousness is an impossibility.

Which Cell is Conscious?

It is not necessary to depend on physics or information theory to see the problem the unity of conscious is to the physicalist view. Consider vision. The optic nerve is actually a bundle of nerves, each carrying separate signals to the brain. They all terminate close to one another but at slightly different places at different cells. Many cells in the brain respond to these signals, at the physical level, "sight" consists of many interrelated but discrete events. If many different cells are involved in "seeing" how do the separate behaviors of each of those cells become integrated into a single phenomenon called "seeing."

Unless there is one "master consciousness cell" that is somehow fed perceptual information by all the other cells of the brain, there is not "one event" at the physical level, but a collection of many separate events that cannot be anything but separate physical events.

Consciousness is not only a single consciousness awareness of everything in the visual field, but simultaneously every thing that can be heard, or felt, or tasted, or smelled. At the physical level, all the discrete neurological events related to consciousness are discrete and separate and no physical method is possible that could integrate all these separate physical events into the single phenomena which is consciousness.

4. Consciousness of Physical not Physical

It is the private nature of consciousness that has been the source of many of philosophy's greatest difficulties. It is the source of all mystic ideas of the "soul" for example. It is very difficult to describe the nature of consciousness as it is consciously experienced and those philosophers who have recognized its significance have gone to great lengths to do so.

Consciousness, the actual experience, cannot be described in terms of any physical quality or attribute, because consciousness is not physical and cannot be attributed to any physical events or actions. Consciousness is an attribute of life, the process. It is to the life process itself that the physiological aspects of the neurological system of an organism presents the perceptual qualities of entities that can be detected by the nervous system to be perceived.

Consciousness and that which we are conscious of cannot be the same thing. The physical is that which we are conscious of (directly perceive), consciousness is directly perceiving (being conscious of) the physical. It is this fact that has led so many philosophers to posit some kind of dualism. The mistake is the assumption that consciousness is something separate from the physical attributes of an organism. But life is an attribute of a physical organism that makes it living, without which it would not be an organism, and consciousness is an attribute of those kinds of organisms that see, hear, feel, smell and taste, without which they would not be those kinds of organisms.

It is the physical aspects of an organism that make it possible for the neurological system to interact with the perceived physical world and make available to consciousness those attributes of the physical that can be perceived. There is no dualism involved in consciousness. Consciousness is a natural attribute of living organisms that cannot exist separate from the physical organisms it is the consciousness of, but is not itself physical or caused by the physical.

5. Tasting is the Only Test

Just as the nature of consciousness cannot be explained in physical terms neither can conscious perception itself. There is no way to determine from the physical characteristics of anything how it will taste, for example, or what any particular chemical will smell like. The only way to know what anything will taste or smell like is to actually taste or smell it.

This is the reason it is so difficult to explain what something tastes like to someone who has never tasted it. Unless it has ingredients that one has tasted before, it is, in fact, impossible to describe the taste of a thing.

This is true of all the perceptual qualities. It is the reason why no description of sound can make a deaf person know what sound "sounds" like, and why no explanation can make a blind person know what anything "looks" like. Yet, it is quite possible to explain all the physical and technical aspects of sound to a deaf person and of light to a blind person.

The reason there is no physical explanation for the conscious experience of taste, or seeing, or hearing, is because perception is not a physical phenomenon, it is a living phenomenon.

[NOTE: The so-called subjectivity of consciousness problem suggested by by some philosophers is mistaken. The spurious argument goes, "If it is only possible to know what is perceived by actually perceiving it, it is a purely subjective experience and it is impossible to know if that experience reflects reality or not." The argument is baseless. It is what is consciously perceived that is reality. It as the world as it is perceived that all the sciences study, that all technology uses, and that we live in and enjoy. The only thing, "subjective" about consciousness is that it is one's own consciousness by which one perceives the physical world. If human beings were not directly conscious of the real physical world, there would be no way to know it. It is the directly perceived world against which all tests of scientific principles are made.]

6. Pain

Unlike sound, or color, or temperature which are physical attributes of physical entities which can be directly perceived, there is no corresponding physical attribute of any physical entity that is pain. Since all perception is perception of the physical, in the case of pain it is not a physical attribute that is perceived but a physical state of an organism. There is no such thing as pain independent of a physical organism.

A broken bone is, to consciousness, extremely painful, but a broken bone, as a physical phenomenon, in terms of physics, has no attribute which can be called pain. No X-ray, physical examination, or analysis of any kind will find any attribute about a broken bone which can be called pain. The pain associated with a broken bone exists only in the context of a living organism and only to consciousness. Pain exists and is real, it is an indication of a real physical state in a biological context, but does not itself exist physically, and has no physical attributes or explanation.

There is another aspect of pain that helps illustrate what consciousness is. When I feel pain, I generally react to that feeling, like holding the finger I just hit with the hammer and yelling "ouch!" or something stronger. But I do not have to react at all. I can "ignore" the pain, if I really have to. Nevertheless, I feel the pain just as much—it is the pain I feel that is the conscious experience, not my reaction to it. (So much for behaviorism.)

7. No Physical Description

No description of any physical (physiological or neurological) action or process related to perception explains or describes any perceptual quality or aspect of consciousness.

No matter what physical (mechanical-electrical-chemical) actions are described, that is all they can describe. When the biologist and physiologist have described all that the nervous system and brain have done, they still have not described consciousness—they have only described a complex of physical events, which no matter how complex or how closely associated to consciousness will never be a description of consciousness itself or any aspect of it.

8. TV in an Empty Room

It has been suggested that given sufficient complexity in the proper configuration, it is possible for a physical process to produce "consciousness." It is supposed, for example, that a complex nervous system like that of the higher animals and human beings in some way "produces" consciousness. The argument uses the pseudo-concept "emergence" which supposedly means new attributes just, "emerge," from the operation of other things, "somehow," but that, "somehow," is never explained. That is supposed to be science.

Conscious vision, according the physicalist, is produced by the nervous system providing information from the eyes that are processed in some way by the brain, which process is "seeing." In fact, no physical process can be vision—even if in some way information reaching the brain from the eye through the optic nerves could be processed into an image, it would be like an image on a TV—but an image on a TV is not vision and can only be consciously seen if someone is watching the TV.

The physicalist's description of consciousness is the description of a TV in an empty room. It is not an "image" that is consciousness; it is the "seeing," of of the image. Whatever the physical brain does, it cannot itself be consciousness. The behavior of the brain is only more physical action; it only makes available to consciousness what is seen, heard, felt, smelled and tasted—the brain itself cannot see, hear, feel, smell or taste anything.

The "Consciousness-Physical" Problem

There is a supposed problem in philosophy, more often called the "mind-body" problem, that asks, "if the mind (or consciousness) is not physical, how does the non-physical interact with or control the physical body. The question pertains to all conscious organism.

Consciousness is not a substance or incorporeal entity occupying a physical body, it is an attribute of the physical organism it is the consciousness of, an integral aspect of the organism without which the organism would not exist as the organism it is. It is the organism's life and consciousness that make it possible for the physical living organism to exist and act to maintain its own existence. Life and consciousness are not separate in any way from the organism, they are, together with the physical attributes, what an organism is. Consciousness is not a separate thing that interacts with the physical, consciousness is that attribute of the organism that makes an organism's specific living behavior possible. It is the organism itself that is conscious and as a conscious organism all its behavior (except for the strictly biological) is conscious behavior.

The Certainty of Consciousness

The one thing an individual is always certain of is their immediate conscious experience. No matter what they are experiencing, the perception of their own internal physical states (feelings and emotions), perception of the external world, dreams, hallucinations, their current thoughts, or imagination, that immediate conscious experience is what it is and one cannot be wrong about it. One can be wrong about the cause of their immediate experience, or about the nature of what the are experiencing, or why they are having the experience, but they cannot be wrong that they are having that experience.

"How do you know you are conscious?" the sophist asks. You cannot not know it. If you doubt you are conscious, the thing that is doing that doubting is your consciousness.

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HexHammer
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Re: The Nature of Consciousness

Post by HexHammer » Tue Jul 09, 2019 8:10 pm

Did you suffer immense brain damage at some point in life?

PeteJ
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Re: The Nature of Consciousness

Post by PeteJ » Sun Aug 04, 2019 10:13 am

RCSaunders wrote:
Tue Jul 09, 2019 3:05 pm
Consciousness is perception, which is the only kind of consciousness we or any other creature has.
What sort of approach to philosophy is this? It is not usually a matter of simply stating one's opinions, and especially not when they are as wildly controversial as this.

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Re: The Nature of Consciousness

Post by RCSaunders » Sun Aug 04, 2019 4:17 pm

PeteJ wrote:
Sun Aug 04, 2019 10:13 am
RCSaunders wrote:
Tue Jul 09, 2019 3:05 pm
Consciousness is perception, which is the only kind of consciousness we or any other creature has.
What sort of approach to philosophy is this? It is not usually a matter of simply stating one's opinions, and especially not when they are as wildly controversial as this.
What kind of disingenuousness is this? You pick the very first sentence in an article and treat it as though it were the whole thesis. The whole rest of the article is the explanation of that sentence.

It is not a premise. It is an introduction. Does that help?

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Re: The Nature of Consciousness

Post by PeteJ » Mon Aug 05, 2019 11:19 am

RCSaunders wrote:
Sun Aug 04, 2019 4:17 pm
What kind of disingenuousness is this? You pick the very first sentence in an article and treat it as though it were the whole thesis. The whole rest of the article is the explanation of that sentence.

It is not a premise. It is an introduction. Does that help?
RCSaunders wrote:
Sun Aug 04, 2019 4:17 pm
It is not a premise. It is an introduction. Does that help?
It's a bold assumption that pre-judges many issues. I appreciate that you've given a lot of thought to the issues, but while I see a lot of ideas in your post there is little justification or argument. If you're right then countless other people are wrong and so some arguments against alternative views seems necessary.

Pardon me if my comment sounded rude. You tend to state your ideas, which are not uncontroversial, with no argument. I agree with much of what you say but also disagree with much. It looks a little like a description of your opinions rather than a justification or argument, so I could just read it as such. But if you want me to change my mind about anything you'd have to try to convince me. Your very first sentence sets the tone and it contains a massive assumption that will affect your entire theory, so it seemed a good place to start making objections.

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Re: The Nature of Consciousness

Post by Dontaskme » Mon Aug 05, 2019 11:41 am

RCSaunders wrote:
Tue Jul 09, 2019 3:05 pm

"How do you know you are conscious?" the sophist asks. You cannot not know it. If you doubt you are conscious, the thing that is doing that doubting is your consciousness.

'a sophist' does not even exist to ask a question. No concept ever asked a question.

Consciousness does not ask questions, nor does consciousness doubt or ponder it's own existence or non-existence because consciousness has no concept of itself as existing or non-existing. Consciousness is infinite, there are no local focal points of individuated separate consciousnesses anywhere that can be approached for two consciousnesses can never meet.

Finite minds are an hallucinatory appearance (''thoughts'') of infinite consciousness..aka phantom things imagined to be real, when in reality no thought thing exists or ever happened, no thought thing is asking questions, no thought thing is doubting or pondering it's existence of non-existence.

If consciousness is the interaction of electromagnetic impulses in the brain, then what is observing the consciousness that is the interaction of electromagnetic impulses in the brain?

The infinite regress problem is solved right there in that one question, in that the begining of consciousness can only ever be here right now where it's always been unmoved in no time or any particular location.

No thing cannot doubt itself, nor can a thing know itself because no thing exists, no thing is real.

A 'thing' is a 'thought' and a 'thought' is a known concept. And that which is KNOWN cannot know. Things know nothing, things are KNOWN by no thing.

.

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Re: The Nature of Consciousness

Post by RCSaunders » Mon Aug 05, 2019 2:43 pm

PeteJ wrote:
Mon Aug 05, 2019 11:19 am
Pardon me if my comment sounded rude.
They didn't seem rude at all to me. If I gave the impression they did, I'm sorry.
PeteJ wrote:
Mon Aug 05, 2019 11:19 am
You tend to state your ideas, which are not uncontroversial, with no argument.
They were meant to be controversial. It was also meant to be stated without defense. As I said earlier, it is only an introduction, and the goal was to illicit comment, to which appropriate arguments could be made, rather than try to guess all the possible objections that might be made.
PeteJ wrote:
Mon Aug 05, 2019 11:19 am
It looks a little like a description of your opinions rather than a justification or argument, so I could just read it as such.
Quite right.
PeteJ wrote:
Mon Aug 05, 2019 11:19 am
But if you want me to change my mind about anything you'd have to try to convince me. Your very first sentence sets the tone and it contains a massive assumption that will affect your entire theory, so it seemed a good place to start making objections.
I have no interest in changing anyone's mind or convincing them about anything. First, because I don't think that is possible, except in the rare cases where someone is truly seeking to understand something, and secondly because what others choose to believe is none of my business.

Objections are exactly what I was looking for, not to change the objectors' minds, but to find ways to more clearly articulate the views I'm presenting.

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Re: The Nature of Consciousness

Post by RCSaunders » Mon Aug 05, 2019 2:46 pm

Dontaskme wrote:
Mon Aug 05, 2019 11:41 am
No concept ever asked a question.
I really shouldn't respond to this, but I do believe in being a courteous as possible, so I'll just ask where anyone suggested a concept ever asked a question?

Do you know what a concept is?

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Re: The Nature of Consciousness

Post by PeteJ » Mon Aug 05, 2019 4:38 pm

RCSaunders wrote:
Mon Aug 05, 2019 2:43 pm
They were meant to be controversial. It was also meant to be stated without defense. As I said earlier, it is only an introduction, and the goal was to illicit comment, to which appropriate arguments could be made, rather than try to guess all the possible objections that might be made.
Ah Okay. Fair enough. I find the post too long to start listing objections but the first of them would be to the idea that consciousness requires perception. This is a massive step into the unknown that dismisses the entire Perennial philosophy in one sentence.

My overall comment would that I find much sense in your ideas but don't feel they deal with the issues adequately and they include too many doubtful assumptions. I'd not want to scrap them, just adjust them. I'd start with the idea of existence, which you seem to take as fundamental. If so, then it would seem to follow that space-time is fundamental. This idea doesn't fly.

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Re: The Nature of Consciousness

Post by RCSaunders » Mon Aug 05, 2019 6:35 pm

PeteJ wrote:
Mon Aug 05, 2019 4:38 pm
I find the post too long to start listing objections but the first of them would be to the idea that consciousness requires perception.
I'm sure you'll still object, but I did not say consciousness requires perception, but that the only consciousness we have is perception, that is, seeing, hearing, feeling, smelling, tasting, and interoception.
PeteJ wrote:
Mon Aug 05, 2019 4:38 pm
This is a massive step into the unknown that dismisses the entire Perennial philosophy in one sentence.
You know I have no use for Perennial philosophy, but regarding perception as the only consciousness is hardly a step into the unknown. I know that I see, hear, feel, smell, taste, and have internal feelings, to pretend there is some other kind of consciousness, whi is truly a step into the unknown.
PeteJ wrote:
Mon Aug 05, 2019 4:38 pm
I'd start with the idea of existence, which you seem to take as fundamental. If so, then it would seem to follow that space-time is fundamental. This idea doesn't fly.
I do regard existence as fundamental. You have to understand what I mean by existence. Existence is everything there is, material and non-material. Material existence includes all physical entities, non-living, living, conscious, and intellectual (human beings). Science is the study of the physical only. The non-material is everything else, knowledge, language, sciences, philosophy, mathematics, logic, history, etc. that is, everything created by the human mind.

Space-time does not exist materially. It only exists as a concept invented by man to describe certain physical phenomena. There is no physical (material), "thing," space-time.

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Re: The Nature of Consciousness

Post by Dontaskme » Tue Aug 06, 2019 8:17 am

RCSaunders wrote:
Mon Aug 05, 2019 2:46 pm
Dontaskme wrote:
Mon Aug 05, 2019 11:41 am
No concept ever asked a question.
I really shouldn't respond to this, but I do believe in being a courteous as possible, so I'll just ask where anyone suggested a concept ever asked a question?

Do you know what a concept is?
Thanks for being courteous, I do hope you were not prising this courtesy out of your being under too much duress.

It was stated here >
"How do you know you are conscious?" the sophist asks.
The word ''sophist'' is a concept.

Concepts are known, and the known know nothing, the known aka concepts cannot ask questions.

So yeah, it is known what a concept is because concepts are known.

So what is your point again..I forgot?

.

.

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Re: The Nature of Consciousness

Post by Speakpigeon » Wed Aug 07, 2019 8:21 pm

RCSaunders wrote:
Tue Jul 09, 2019 3:05 pm
The "Consciousness-Physical" Problem

There is a supposed problem in philosophy, more often called the "mind-body" problem, that asks, "if the mind (or consciousness) is not physical, how does the non-physical interact with or control the physical body. The question pertains to all conscious organism.
From a logical perspective, I know my own consciousness. What I don't know is the physical world. So, if anything, I would rather that you explained what is this physical world that I don't know, and preferably in terms of my own consciousness that I do know.

Thus, the question of "interaction" is a non-starter as long as we don't know what is the physical world.

I don't need to be given an explanation of consciousness just as I don't need to be given an explanation of reality because by definition there is none. But explain to me what is really the physical world. I already know what it is I believe it to be, and it all comes down to what I am supposed to perceive of it although my perceptions are conscious events, events part of my consciousness. Thus, I really have no idea what is the physical world and I don't believe anyone does.

Although, again, this is only from a logical perspective. We can if we prefer just ignore logic and go on discussing what the Bible says or something.
EB

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Re: The Nature of Consciousness

Post by Speakpigeon » Wed Aug 07, 2019 8:31 pm

PeteJ wrote:
Mon Aug 05, 2019 4:38 pm
I'd start with the idea of existence, which you seem to take as fundamental. If so, then it would seem to follow that space-time is fundamental. This idea doesn't fly.
Existence is indeed fundamental but existence only as you experience it subjectively, and as such it implies neither space, time nor space-time just as the quale of redness doesn't imply anything about the physical world. Existence in space-time, or more generally in the physical world, or indeed existence of the physical world isn't fundamental since all these concepts are beliefs derived from our experience.
EB

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Re: The Nature of Consciousness

Post by RCSaunders » Fri Aug 09, 2019 4:03 pm

Speakpigeon wrote:
Wed Aug 07, 2019 8:31 pm
Existence is indeed fundamental but existence only as you experience it subjectively, and as such it implies neither space, time nor space-time just as the quale of redness doesn't imply anything about the physical world. Existence in space-time, or more generally in the physical world, or indeed existence of the physical world isn't fundamental since all these concepts are beliefs derived from our experience.
EB
Space and time are concepts for physical phenomena. Things really do have positional relations to each other, and things that move change their positional relationships and those relationships are called spatial. Time is a way, along with velocity, of relating motions to each other. The are not themselves entities, but they certainly exist as real physical relationships. Those relationship exist independently of anyone's consciousness or knowledge of them.

As for, "the quale of redness doesn't imply anything about the physical world," why does science attribute a unique range of electro-magnetic wavelengths to the color red if there is no actual relationship between them?

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Re: The Nature of Consciousness

Post by RCSaunders » Fri Aug 09, 2019 4:25 pm

Speakpigeon wrote:
Wed Aug 07, 2019 8:21 pm
... I don't need to be given an explanation of reality because by definition there is none. But explain to me what is really the physical world.
At first blush, the request seems disingenuous. If you know there is no reality (by definition) what would be the point of asking for an explanation of what you know does not really exist?

Exactly what is defined in such a way that it means there is no reality? "There is no reality," is not a definition of anything, it is simply a proposition.

Since you asked: the physical world is the one in which its constituent elements are discovered and described by chemistry, for example. The one you eat, drink, sleep, read, shop, drive your car, make love, and write responses to posts in.

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