Re: "The definition of life and consciousness?"

From: J. R. Molloy (
Date: Mon Jan 15 2001 - 18:51:03 MST

From: "Steve Nichols" <>
It seems to me valid to say that someone has "consciousness
> OF" something .. such as they are concious of a pain in their foot, but
> not too useful just to say that they have (non-specified)
"consciousness" as
> if it is an entity by itself, even devoid of content.

I think you've touched the core of the problem. Consciousness without
content (pure consciousness) equates to the mystical "cosmic
consciousness," reference to which offends anyone who has been victimized
by quackery, which means just about everyone, I guess. As Wittgenstein has
noted (taking time off from philosophy), "That which cannot be said ought
not to be said." Which means that references to that which ineffably
abides beyond words are wasted on those who haven't experienced it, and
unnecessary for those who have.

Stay hungry,

--J. R.
3M TA3

Useless hypotheses: consciousness, phlogiston, philosophy, vitalism, mind,
free will

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