Re: q*****

Zeb Haradon (
Fri, 10 Dec 1999 19:38:17 -0800

-----Original Message-----
From: Ken Clements <> To: <> Date: Friday, December 10, 1999 12:10 PM Subject: Re: q*****

>One of the great failures of reasoning to which people are generally
susceptible goes
>along the lines of "I don't know how to do X without Y, therefore Y is
essential to
>have X." This argument can hold ground for centuries until someone comes
along and
>figures out how to do X without Y, and then it collapses in a pile of
>rubbish. Vitalism went this way, together with mountains of mumbo jumbo
from every
>culture in history. The need for a certain easily spread, but none the
less useless,
>superstition that starts with a 'q' is not far from the flusher.

Great, so tell us how.
Until then, I favor Chalmers over Dennett. There is a quote I like which really sums up the situation on consciousness:

"At the present time the status of physicalism [your view] is similar to that which the

hypothesis that matter is energy would have had if uttered by a pre-Socratic

philosopher. We do not have the beginnings of a conception of how it might be

true. In order to understand the hypothesis that a mental event is a physical

event, we require more than an understanding of the word 'is'." - Thomas Nagel

Qualia are REAL. This is undeniable. They are not a hypothesis used to explain a phenomena - they are a phenomena which make themselves immediately accessible to whoever experiences them. They are the fact which other hypothesi must explain. I suspect (strongly) that they are intimately tied to, or are caused by, or perhaps just "are" physical phenomena, in the sense that holograms are light. People who deny their existence remind me of the Mr. Spock stereotyped scientist portrayed on tv who will put forth some argument like "love doesn't really exist, it's simply a series of biochemical reactions", I wonder at what kind of weird motivation he has in denying the plainly obvious, or trying to language around a clearly evident fact.

Zeb Haradon
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