The Illusion of Illusionism

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Philosophy Now
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The Illusion of Illusionism

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Raymond Tallis sees through a physicalist confusion.

https://philosophynow.org/issues/161/The_Illusion_of_Illusionism
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Re: The Illusion of Illusionism

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The Illusion of Illusionism
Raymond Tallis sees through a physicalist confusion.
Consciousness has always been a serious embarrassment for those who believe that everything is physical and that physics is the most authoritative account of the material world.
On the other hand, as some particularly hardcore determinists might insist, the embarrassment anyone might feel about this -- or, for that matter, anything else -- is merely one more inherent manifestation of the only possible reality.

Then what? How do philosophers go about establishing that, on the contrary, human consciousness really is "above and beyond" matter? After all, not even scientists are able to accomplish this. In fact, isn't this why so many simply accept the explanation that free will revolves entirely around our God-given "souls"?
There is, it seems, nothing in matter or energy as seen through the eyes of physics that explains how a part of the material world might become aware of itself and the world surrounding it, as is the case with conscious subjects, such as readers of Philosophy Now. Physicalism cannot account for the emergence of minds from a purely physical reality.
Okay, but there was once a time when, "through the eyes of physics", Einstein's space-time continuum, dark matter, dark energy, quantum mechanics, etc., were not understood to be crucial components factored into whatever, going back to the explanation for the existence of existence itself, reality itself might be.

In other words, there's what scientists think they now know about the human mind "here and now", and what they might know about it a hundred years from now? a thousand years from now?

As for speculations coming from philosophers, how are they not still basically just arguments? Words defining and defending other words.
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Re: The Illusion of Illusionism

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The Illusion of Illusionism
Raymond Tallis sees through a physicalist confusion.
Physicalist philosophers often try to tame the conscious mind by reducing it to the locus of functional connections between incoming sensory stimuli and outgoing bodily behaviour. Consciousness then becomes a tapestry of causal pathways passing through the nervous system of the organism.
So much more to the point [mine] to what extent are physicalist philosophers [or any other philosophers] able to take their arguments -- their definitions and deductions -- to the scientific community in order to confirm that indeed how they construe the brain functioning is in fact how it does function.

The part, in other words, where it can all become truly surreal because it is the brain that is faced with the task of explaining itself.
Given that the links in this causal chain are physical events, most importantly neural discharges, the conscious mind can then be fitted comfortably into the physicalist world picture, so the physicalist claims.
Again, from my frame of mind [compelled or not], the dilemma revolves more around attempts to discover if the claims being made [by anyone] are in and of themselves wholly determined given the only possible material reality. Even pursuits by the scientific community may well be only what they could ever have been.
Quite rightly, this does not satisfy many philosophers.
Same thing? Could not the satisfaction and dissatisfaction that philosophers feel [about anything] not in turn just reflect the only possible reality?
David Chalmers famously distinguished between ‘the easy’ and ‘the hard’ problems of consciousness. While functionalist stories, he argued, may account for some overt behaviour associated with being conscious, it cannot deal with the experiential (aka phenomenal or subjective) dimensions of consciousness – the ‘what it is like to be’ an entity having awareness. His hard problem is how brain activity can produce conscious awareness at all.
This reminds me of the arguments that go back and forth in regard to artificial intelligence. Okay, the machines can beat a Grand Master at chess. The "easy" part?" But what about human emotions and psychological states? What about acquiring a sense of humor, an understanding of irony? Or the absence of a physical body, the equivalent of the id, the super-ego, the subconscious and unconscious mind?

As for "deal[ing] with the experiential (aka phenomenal or subjective) dimensions of consciousness" given free will, look at all the philosophers here who cannot deal with my own defense of moral nihilism...dasein, Benjamin Button, the gap, Rummy's Rule.
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Re: The Illusion of Illusionism

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The Illusion of Illusionism
Raymond Tallis sees through a physicalist confusion.
In his most detailed development of the hard/easy distinction, Chalmers’ list of ‘easy’ problems in the philosophy of mind includes: how the brain can discriminate, categorize, and react to environmental stimuli; our capacity to describe our mental states; our ability to focus our attention, or deliberately to control our behaviour; how our cognitive systems acquire and integrate information; and the difference between wakefulness and sleep.
Of course, I'd be particularly interested in "the difference between wakefulness and sleep". And that is because I have yet to come upon argument that explains how the brain itself calls all the shots given our "behaviors" in dreams, whereas when we wake up the brain, what, kicks everything over to the autonomous components?

From Quora:

"There is free-will in dreams, but most people do not become aware of it as it is possible to interrupt your sleep, for once you become aware of free will and your ability to bend reality, you are no longer unconscious but conscious. People experience this during lucid dreaming or sleep paralysis.

How about this...

Note a recent dream you had and explain how the above is applicable to it.

On the other hand...

Of late, I have been experiencing mind games that truly baffle me. I use THC gummies to help me fall asleep.

About an hour or so after taking them, while lying in bed, the drug takes effect. Then for an hour or so I get these "images" in my head. Sort of half way between sober and stoned. A dream-like experience but not really a dream at all.

After a few days, I began to note this: that the awake me was actually able modify the "dreams", exercising some measure of control.

The human brain!
Yet for me, understanding all these aspects of consciousness is as hard as explaining experience. Attention, deliberation about one’s behaviour, and wakefulness, are also things about which we can ask the question, “What is it like?”
Then my part: the distinction between what an experience was like for you and what it was like for others. Given the same set of circumstances. The part that, in regard to value judgments, I root existentially in dasein.
Likewise dream-filled sleep. Indeed, if these features did not feel like anything – if there was nothing it was like to experience them – they would not be what they’re supposed to be.
Not sure what he means by this. How is this applicable to our behaviors in dreams? How is it applicable in your dreams?
What’s more, difficult questions would remain about why they at least seem to feel like something. ‘Seeming to feel like’ is no more amenable to a physicalist explanation than ‘feeling like’, as seeming also presupposes experience.
Again, if some renditions of hard determinism are true, then what we think, what we feel, what we say and what we do in every single experience that we have from the cradle to the grave is necessarily embedded in the only possible reality. Then all of the "metaphysical" imponderables going back to how matter itself evolved into biological life.
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Re: The Illusion of Illusionism

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The Illusion of Illusionism
Raymond Tallis sees through a physicalist confusion.
Be that as it may [above], most philosophers think that the phenomenal, or quality of sensation, of ‘what-it-is-like’ consciousness – qualia, such as the smell of cheese, the sight of red, and the feeling of pain – present an especial challenge to physicalism.
Of course, that's the point I come back to over and again: that philosophers will tell you what they think about this. On the other hand, haven't philosophers been telling us what they think is going on when the brain thinks about thinking about things like this now for literally thousands of years?

And the fact that brain scientists themselves are still grappling to come up with a way to most rationally grapple with a brain given the task of explaining itself...? And to the best of my knowledge they too have failed to resolve it.
There is nothing in neural activity – which physically speaking is simply the passage of ions through semi-permeable membranes – that accounts for these experiences. After all, similar neural activity in the spinal cord, the cerebellum, and most of the cerebral cortex, is not associated with consciousness.
Okay, the libertarians among us might argue, "somehow" when matter evolved into biological life here on Earth, that life "somehow" evolved into us and we "acquired" free will. Yet how is that not but another "leap of faith" for philosophers?

Nature vs. God? With God, everything can be reduced down to His "mysterious ways". But what is any less mysterious when connecting human consciousness to Nature?
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Re: The Illusion of Illusionism

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Philosophy Now wrote: Wed May 08, 2024 9:14 pm Raymond Tallis sees through a physicalist confusion.

https://philosophynow.org/issues/161/Th ... llusionism
"Consciousness has always been a serious embarrassment for those who believe that everything is physical and that physics is the most authoritative account of the material world. There is, it seems, nothing in matter or energy as seen through the eyes of physics that explains how a part of the material world might become aware of itself and the world surrounding it, as is the case with conscious subjects, such as readers of Philosophy Now. Physicalism cannot account for the emergence of minds from a purely physical reality." — Raymond Tallis

This accusation immediately backfires in the antiphysicalist's face:

"Consciousness has always been a serious embarrassment for those who believe that not everything is physical, or that everything is not physical, and that hyperphysics is the most authoritative account of the mental world. There is, it seems, nothing in nonphysical mind-stuff or immaterial souls/spirits as seen through the eyes of hyperphysics that explains how a part of the mental world might become aware of itself and the world surrounding it, as is the case with conscious subjects, such as readers of Philosophy Now. Psychicalism cannot account for the emergence of minds from a purely psychical reality."
"Compare now what the neuroscientist can tell us about the brain, and what she can do with that knowledge, with what the dualist can tell us about spiritual substance, and what he can do with those assumptions. Can the dualist tell us anything about the internal constitution of mind-stuff? Of the nonmaterial elements that make it up? Of the nonphysical laws that govern their behavior? Of the mind's structural connections with the body? Of the manner of the mind's operations? Can he explain human capacities and pathologies in terms of its structures and defects? The fact is, the dualist can do none of these things because no detailed theory of mind-stuff has ever even be formulated. Compared to the rich resources and the explanatory successes of current materialism, dualism is not so much a theory of mind as it is an empty space waiting for a genuine theory of mind to be put in it.

(Churchland, Paul M. Matter and Consciousness. 3rd ed. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2013. p. 31)
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Re: The Illusion of Illusionism

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"If the rivals of materialism have any advantage it must be because there are some residual phenomena which they can explain better. Now, most of the phenomena which the supernaturalist throws in the naturalist's teeth are such as the supernaturalist himself has never explained."

(Williams, Donald Cary. "Naturalism and the Nature of Things." In Principles of Empirical Realism: Philosophical Essays, 212-238. Springfield, IL: Charles C Thomas, 1966. p. 234)
———
"The candid student, in fine, cannot be blamed if he concludes that the only reason that physical realism [= materialism/physicalism—added] seems vulnerable at all is that it explains so much more so much better than other philosophies that the imperfections of its explanations are noticeable. As solipsism gains undeserved credit by being so preposterous that its bare possibility looks like evidence in its favor, so materialism suffers by having so few difficulties that one difficulty more or less makes a difference. A blasé public does not expect idealisms and dualisms to explain anything. With innocent cynicism, we appreciate that these philosophies were designed for a different purpose and are doing all that can be expected in a logical way if they avoid contradicting themselves and the obvious facts of experience. The physical realist seems constantly riding for a fall because he is on the only horse really entered in the chase.

It is most excellent testimony to the high confirmedness of physical realism that so many of its competitors renounce confirmation as a criterion. It is a tribute to its power of explaining the appearances that its competitors call it a philosophy of appearances (for we have seen that it is not a philosophy of appearances in any other sense), and that the persons who hate it are preeminently the persons who hate understanding, the mystery lovers. It is a tribute to the scientific advantage of materialism that the application of scientific method in philosophy is so often decried as a begging of the question in its favor and that materialism is called a presupposition of scientific method or scientific method is alleged to be limited to material reality. The logic of science has in sooth no presuppositions and no limitations. It is analytic and a priori, like 'Eggs are eggs', and inexorably germane to any possible world, monistic or dualistic, theistic or atheistic, chaos or cosmos. The hand-in-glove conformity of physical realism and scientific method is no logically preestablished harmony but the empirical fit of a beautifully concordant hypothesis with the facts.

Physical realism is not a foregone conclusion, but it is so lucid and probable that to defend it is, in this day, to defend integrity and understanding. To be loyal to it is to be loyal to philosophy, as to be loyal to philosophy is to be loyal to knowledge and to life. Materialism has often been patronized as a naive and childish philosophy, and this judgment of it is less unjust than most. Materialism is the philosophy of the preschool child as of a pre-Socratic and pre-Sophistic culture. It is the philosophy of limpid minds concerned only to know what most likely is actually the case, not yet distraught by the desire to turn ideation to the uses of compensation, obfuscation, or denial.

For us in America today the contrast between the high-hearted metaphysics of naturalism and all the fine evasions of obscurantism and agnosticism may be literally of epochal importance. The culture of America, by reason of its unique provenance, may choose either to be old or to be young, to be Alexandrian or to be Milesian. Whether we are thus at the end of a career or the beginning of one will in large part depend upon whether our citizens in this century learn their lessons from mystic evangels who would purge us of scientific understanding, from resigned sophisticates who set up languages and toy with thoughts of future possible sensations, or from philosophers who explore the nature of things."

(Williams, Donald Cary. "Naturalism and the Nature of Things." In Principles of Empirical Realism: Philosophical Essays, 212-238. Springfield, IL: Charles C Thomas, 1966. pp. 237-8)
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Re: The Illusion of Illusionism

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iambiguous wrote: Wed May 08, 2024 9:59 pm Of late, I have been experiencing mind games that truly baffle me. I use THC gummies to help me fall asleep.

About an hour or so after taking them, while lying in bed, the drug takes effect. Then for an hour or so I get these "images" in my head. Sort of half way between sober and stoned. A dream-like experience but not really a dream at all.

After a few days, I began to note this: that the awake me was actually able modify the "dreams", exercising some measure of control.
Cool.

Now, how about allowing that to be a "foot in the door" that leads to the understanding that if it is indeed possible that life continues on after the death of the body,...

...and that if you (or, more specifically, your inner "I Am-ness") could somehow gain full awareness and full control of those dream substances, along with enough time (say, billions of years),...

...then it is plausible that at some point in the infinite future, you would eventually be able to willfully shape those substances into the same sort of stable reality that you see when you direct your consciousness outward into this universe.

Furthermore, say at some point in the infinite future you become so good at shaping your own personal dream substances into stable manifestations of "reality" that you are able to cause certain portions of it to acquire self-awareness (as in separate minds) in precisely the same way that you yourself acquired self-awareness (and your own separate mind), billions of years earlier in this universe.

In which case, what do you suppose those newly awakened beings/minds...

(again, beings created from your own dream substances)

...would discover as they tried to dissect and analyze the fabric of the reality in which they are suspended?

They would discover through something they call "quantum physics" that their entire "material" reality is created from an infinitely malleable substance that is capable of being formed into absolutely anything "imaginable."

They (or at least the more awake among them) would deduce that the fundamental and foundational substance from which all matter is created (including that of their own bodies and brains),...

...seems to be nothing more than an extremely advanced and highly ordered version of the same fundamental substance from which their own thoughts and dreams are created.

In other words, what I am suggesting is that the above scenario of an "I Am-ness" acquiring, again, full awareness and full control over its mental substances has already been achieved sometime in the infinite depths of past eternity, and that the manifestation of this universe is an example of what that control (combined with eternal life) can yield.

By realizing that your inner "I Am-ness" is capable of exercising a "measure of control" over an inner dimension of reality that, when dreaming, can sometimes seem almost as "real" as this outer dimension of reality,...

...you have thus, again, placed your foot inside a very important door.

In which case, I suggest that you keep knocking and pushing on that door and try not to let old assumptions and skepticisms get in the way of pursuing what may lie on the other side of that door.
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Re: The Illusion of Illusionism

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seeds wrote: Mon May 13, 2024 6:36 pm
iambiguous wrote: Wed May 08, 2024 9:59 pm Of late, I have been experiencing mind games that truly baffle me. I use THC gummies to help me fall asleep.

About an hour or so after taking them, while lying in bed, the drug takes effect. Then for an hour or so I get these "images" in my head. Sort of half way between sober and stoned. A dream-like experience but not really a dream at all.

After a few days, I began to note this: that the awake me was actually able modify the "dreams", exercising some measure of control.
Cool.

Now, how about allowing that to be a "foot in the door" that leads to the understanding that if it is indeed possible that life continues on after the death of the body,...

...and that if you (or, more specifically, your inner "I Am-ness") could somehow gain full awareness and full control of those dream substances, along with enough time (say, billions of years),...

...then it is plausible that at some point in the infinite future, you would eventually be able to willfully shape those substances into the same sort of stable reality that you see when you direct your consciousness outward into this universe.

Furthermore, say at some point in the infinite future you become so good at shaping your own personal dream substances into stable manifestations of "reality" that you are able to cause certain portions of it to acquire self-awareness (as in separate minds) in precisely the same way that you yourself acquired self-awareness (and your own separate mind), billions of years earlier in this universe.

In which case, what do you suppose those newly awakened beings/minds...

(again, beings created from your own dream substances)

...would discover as they tried to dissect and analyze the fabric of the reality in which they are suspended?

They would discover through something they call "quantum physics" that their entire "material" reality is created from an infinitely malleable substance that is capable of being formed into absolutely anything "imaginable."

They (or at least the more awake among them) would deduce that the fundamental and foundational substance from which all matter is created (including that of their own bodies and brains),...

...seems to be nothing more than an extremely advanced and highly ordered version of the same fundamental substance from which their own thoughts and dreams are created.

In other words, what I am suggesting is that the above scenario of an "I Am-ness" acquiring, again, full awareness and full control over its mental substances has already been achieved sometime in the infinite depths of past eternity, and that the manifestation of this universe is an example of what that control (combined with eternal life) can yield.

By realizing that your inner "I Am-ness" is capable of exercising a "measure of control" over an inner dimension of reality that, when dreaming, can sometimes seem almost as "real" as this outer dimension of reality,...

...you have thus, again, placed your foot inside a very important door.

In which case, I suggest that you keep knocking and pushing on that door and try not to let old assumptions and skepticisms get in the way of pursuing what may lie on the other side of that door.
_______
If? Sure, when you start there almost anything is possible.

If not though?

Anyway "here and now", I'm fractured and fragmented regarding human autonomy. But, even in assuming we "somehow" did acquire it, I've thought myself into believing that, in a No God world, human existence itself is essentially meaningless and purposeless, that human morality is rooted existentially in dasein and that death = oblivion. Then the gap, Rummy's Rule and the Benjamin Button Syndrome.

I'm most interested, however, not in what others here [including myself] believe about this, but what they are able to demonstrate that all rational men and women are [philosophically or otherwise] obligated to believe in turn.
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Re: The Illusion of Illusionism

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iambiguous wrote: Mon May 13, 2024 9:50 pm If? Sure, when you start there almost anything is possible.

If not though?...

...I'm most interested, however, not in what others here [including myself] believe about this, but what they are able to demonstrate that all rational men and women are [philosophically or otherwise] obligated to believe in turn.
You, of course, are not obligated to believe any of this.

The bare minimum of what I am shooting for is for you to at least be open-minded to the fact that I am merely trying to give you a tentative insight into what God might possibly be.

In other words, all I am suggesting is that the Creator of this universe is simply a living (incorporeal) Entity who is in possession of a mind with a central "I Am-ness" just like us, and who has made it to the heights to which a mind can evolve.

And the fact that you have already "demonstrated" to yourself that you hold a "measure of control" over an inner dimension of reality that, at certain times, seems to be "almost as real" as this outer dimension of reality,...

...should, as I stated earlier, at least be a "foot in the door" to seeing how another Being might possibly hold a measure of control (make that complete control) over the fabric of this universe.

Like I've said many times before, even hardcore materialism seems to confirm what I am suggesting.

And that's because if according to materialism there is literally nothing else other than matter, then that means that the stuff that forms our dreams is simply an inward extension of the same stuff that forms the stars and planets.

Which means that if humans (within the inner context of our own minds) can willfully grasp the same fundamental substance that forms the stars and planets and transform it into anything we wish (just by “thinking It” into existence), then why not accept how that could also apply to the Creator of this universe?

You insist that the veracity of these ideas must somehow be "demonstrated" to you.

Well, from my perspective, there are only two ways in which my theory could be demonstrated to you.

One way is if you were to die and awaken into full consciousness and thus discover the full potential of your mind.

And the other way is for God to directly impart these ideas to you in the same way they were imparted to me in my "Burning Bush-like" encounter with God that I painstakingly described in this thread...

viewtopic.php?t=41452
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Re: The Illusion of Illusionism

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Consciousness has always been a serious embarrassment for those who believe that everything is physical and that physics is the most authoritative account of the material world. There is, it seems, nothing in matter or energy as seen through the eyes of physics that explains how a part of the material world might become aware of itself and the world surrounding it, as is the case with conscious subjects, such as readers of Philosophy Now. Physicalism cannot account for the emergence of minds from a purely physical reality.
What does it mean to be "physical"? Sure, Dualism is not a valid position and neither is a "physical" monist position for the reasons being described in this article because one still has to account for the mind, illusion or not.

Science describes objects as the interaction, or relationship, of smaller objects (ie cells are made of molecules, molecules made of atoms, atoms made of protons and electrons, etc.) all the way down. So if each object is just a relation of smaller objects all the way down, where, or what, is the "physical" nature of reality? What does it mean to be "physical"?

Some physicalists propose that reality is simply a relation of mathematics, or that mathematics is fundamental. But mathematics is an abstraction.

In my opinion, reality is not physical or mental. It is informational. Information is fundamental.
Chalmers’ list of ‘easy’ problems in the philosophy of mind includes: how the brain can discriminate, categorize, and react to environmental stimuli; our capacity to describe our mental states; our ability to focus our attention, or deliberately to control our behaviour; how our cognitive systems acquire and integrate information; and the difference between wakefulness and sleep. Yet for me, understanding all these aspects of consciousness is as hard as explaining experience. Attention, deliberation about one’s behaviour, and wakefulness, are also things about which we can ask the question, “What is it like?” Likewise dream-filled sleep. Indeed, if these features did not feel like anything – if there was nothing it was like to experience them – they would not be what they’re supposed to be. What’s more, difficult questions would remain about why they at least seem to feel like something. ‘Seeming to feel like’ is no more amenable to a physicalist explanation than ‘feeling like’, as seeming also presupposes experience.
Exactly. Even the study of neurology requires conscious experience. All descriptions of the brain and it's neurons and their activities are visual descriptions. Observations are made, hypotheses proposed and then tested with more observations. Science itself is the act of categorizing ones observations (conscious experiences) to be able to make predictions of future observations (conscious experiences).

If consciousness is an illusion then so are all the observations made by science, including neurology.
There is an obvious objection to illusionism. How can I be wrong about the existence of something for which I have inescapable evidence? Of course, I can be mistaken as to the existence of something that I believe is out there because of my experiences: I may incorrectly think I have seen a red apple. Or I may incorrectly classify it as a plum. I cannot, however, be mistaken that I have had an experience of a colour (even though I might misname it because I have a poor grasp of colour terminology).
Agreed. Even though I know that a mirage is not a real puddle of water on the ground I still experience the "illusion". The cause of the "illusion" is explained as a product of the behavior of light and it's interaction with our eye-brain system. The causes of a mirage aren't waved away without some explanation as to how or why it appears in the first place. So why would describing the mind as an illusion be any different?
It is, however, far from clear why brain mechanisms should enter awareness at all. What purpose does consciousness serve? Most organic and all artefactual mechanisms proceed without being made aware of themselves. Granted that the clever things that go on in computers are, for we who use them, handily reduced to icons, just as Dennett notes – but that reduction is not for the benefit of the computer, but for the (conscious) user for whom the computer is simply a tool to support a certain range of activities. This is hardly analogous to our minds’ relationship to our brains.
To me, the purpose of consciousness is learning. Consciousness is basically a sensory feedback loop where we make an observation, adapt our behavior, observe the effects of our behavior and then repeat until we become proficient. This is how we learn to ride a bike, drive a car, use a computer, etc. Once we become proficient we no longer need to devote conscious effort to the task. We can automate the tasks of riding a bike and driving a car and focus on other matters, like what we will have for dinner tonight or what you will talk about with your friends later in the day, etc.

This is what separates us from the lower animals and AI. They operate on instincts. Instincts are those behaviors that have been hard-coded over millions of years and therefore do not require consciousness to function. However, if AI was designed to make observations in real-time, adjust its behaviors based on those observations and then update it's programming based on the effects its behavior had, then we can say that the AI has conscious experiences. The information in its working memory would qualify as "what it is like" for the AI, just as it is for humans. Consciousness is a type of working memory.
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Re: The Illusion of Illusionism

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seeds wrote: Tue May 14, 2024 1:02 am
iambiguous wrote: Mon May 13, 2024 9:50 pm If? Sure, when you start there almost anything is possible.

If not though?...

...I'm most interested, however, not in what others here [including myself] believe about this, but what they are able to demonstrate that all rational men and women are [philosophically or otherwise] obligated to believe in turn.
You, of course, are not obligated to believe any of this.

The bare minimum of what I am shooting for is for you to at least be open-minded to the fact that I am merely trying to give you a tentative insight into what God might possibly be.
Click.

For those here who do believe in a God, the God, my God, I propose that we take that belief and explore it given the following factors:

1] a demonstrable proof of the existence of your God or religious/spiritual path
2] addressing the fact that down through the ages hundreds of Gods and religious/spiritual paths to immortality and salvation were/are championed...but only one of which [if any] can be the true path. So why yours?
3] addressing the profoundly problematic role that dasein plays in any particular individual's belief in Gods and religious/spiritual faiths
4] the questions that revolve around theodicy and your own particular God or religious/spiritual path


And, in particular, number four. In other words, reconciling a God, the God with this:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lists_of_earthquakes
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_l ... _eruptions
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_t ... l_cyclones
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_tsunamis
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_landslides
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_fires
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_epidemics
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_deadliest_floods
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_t ... ore_deaths
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lists_of_diseases
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_extinction_events

From my own frame of mind "here and now", it would seem that if a God, the God does exist then He is either in sync with Harold Kushner's rendition of Him or He is nothing less than a sadistic monster.
seeds wrote: Tue May 14, 2024 1:02 amAnd the fact that you have already "demonstrated" to yourself that you hold a "measure of control" over an inner dimension of reality that, at certain times, seems to be "almost as real" as this outer dimension of reality,...
Okay, but that frame of mind was brought about by the THC. In fact, back in the day when I had access to LSD...were all of these at times truly bizarre experiences also "God given"?

And it's one thing to experience things "in our heads" and another thing altogether to connect the dots between that and a God, the God. Other than, in turn, "in your head". Again, back to the gap between what you believe and what you are able to demonstrate [even to yourself] is in fact true.

Then the part where things like God and religion become "psychological defense mechanisms". That you believe in them is precisely what comforts and consoles you the most. And on both sides of the grave since with God you have access "in your head" to immortality and salvation.
seeds wrote: Tue May 14, 2024 1:02 amLike I've said many times before, even hardcore materialism seems to confirm what I am suggesting.
Okay, but the truly hardcore materialists believe you are suggesting only that which your brain, wholly in sync with the laws of matter, compels you to suggest. The part where they suggest free will is but a psychological illusion.
seeds wrote: Tue May 14, 2024 1:02 amYou insist that the veracity of these ideas must somehow be "demonstrated" to you.

Well, from my perspective, there are only two ways in which my theory could be demonstrated to you.

One way is if you were to die and awaken into full consciousness and thus discover the full potential of your mind.
Believe me, if, after I am dead, my mind is still around at all, that's better than oblivion, right?
seeds wrote: Tue May 14, 2024 1:02 amAnd the other way is for God to directly impart these ideas to you in the same way they were imparted to me in my "Burning Bush-like" encounter with God that I painstakingly described in this thread...

viewtopic.php?t=41452
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Look, I accept the fact that, given free will, those other than me have had personal experiences with God. Assuming of course that is not just one of many mental "conditions".

But unless they are able to provide me with a way to experience it myself then that's all it really is: a personal experience.

And, let's face it, any number of these folks...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_r ... traditions

....might have their own rendition of "personal experiences" with God. Why yours and not theirs?
Atla
Posts: 6953
Joined: Fri Dec 15, 2017 8:27 am

Re: The Illusion of Illusionism

Post by Atla »

Trajk Logik wrote: Tue May 14, 2024 3:20 pm Some physicalists propose that reality is simply a relation of mathematics, or that mathematics is fundamental. But mathematics is an abstraction.

In my opinion, reality is not physical or mental. It is informational. Information is fundamental.
Information is also an abstraction, just like mathematics. :)
Impenitent
Posts: 4397
Joined: Wed Feb 10, 2010 2:04 pm

Re: The Illusion of Illusionism

Post by Impenitent »

concrete abstractions lacking rebar ...

the Doobies had it right

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qKYQNtF11eg

-Imp
seeds
Posts: 2222
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2016 9:31 pm

Re: The Illusion of Illusionism

Post by seeds »

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