• Eugen
    235
    I don't even have to get into it too deep to see how ludacris that is:
    1. How can you do science if you are not conscious in the first place?
    2. If consciousness is an illusion, how can we tell that our scientific measurements are not an illusion as well?
    3.If consciousness doesn't exist and it's all an illusion, than how can we experience illusions if we don't have consciousness in the first place?
    Although such a stupid statement, this is very popular among people who form the philosophical and scientific world. How is this possible?!?!
  • Kmaca
    14
    I think most philosophers do accept some notion of consciousness but the ones who reject consciousness get more coverage or attention so the rejection of consciousness seems greater than it is.
    For example, this is a survey of professional philosophers in 2009 and go to the zombie question. It seems most think a zombie without consciousness is impossible. Only 24% consider it a metaphysical possibility which is a much weaker claim than saying consciousness doesn’t exist. https://philpapers.org/surveys/results.pl?affil=All+respondents%26areas0=0%26areas_max=1%26grain=medium
    Some people may have trouble with a non-physical notion of consciousness but still admit we are conscious in some sense; it’s just not as ‘special’ as we think it is. I think Dennett takes this position.
  • Kenosha Kid
    519

    Can you give an example?
  • Mww
    1.6k
    How is this possible?!?!Eugen

    Easy: brain states. Make of that what you wish.
  • Eugen
    235
    Dennet is a funny guy, but at the end of the day he's just a "bag of tricks" too. Let me explain how his philosophy works: Consciousness does not reflect the reality 100% accurately - therefore is tricky - therefore is a trick - therefore is not extraordinary - therefore, nothing is extraordinary in this reality - therefore God doesn't exist.
    But Dennet, although not a sofisticated guy, he actually does not deny the 1st person experiences, nor consciousness.
  • Wheatley
    1.1k
    You might want to add this clown to your party as well. :rofl:



    Edit: Here's a better one:
  • Eugen
    235
    Ok, I wasn't right, but still 24% is absolutely massive and I simply cannot understand how rational people can sustain such a crazy idea. I wouldn't be shocked if a guy on heroine said that, but stating that we are bot conscious is not only crazy, but also anti-scientific. To do science, you need to be consciouss! How could one trust science so nuch if they doubt their own existence? For me, this is just absurd!
  • Isaac
    2.5k


    Do you have anything more substantive to say than just declaring your own incredulity? Like any view on the detail of any of the arguments you oppose, for example?

    The guidelines specify that you should be

    Able to write a thoughtful OP of reasonable length that illustrates this interest, and to provide arguments for any position you intend to advocate.

    Here's a link to a few points about writing a quality OP.
  • Eugen
    235
    Only 24% consider it a metaphysical possibility which is a much weaker claim than saying consciousness doesn’t exist.Kmaca

    So I wasn't right about the majority. But I truly believe 1/4 of scientists (minimum) have a real problem: they cannot accept things that somehow get in conflict with their rooted beliefs. People of CHurch have said and done many stupid things, but I have never heard a thing said by religion that matches the stupidity, ridiculousness and absurdity of ''consciousness don't exist''. If 1/4 of the scientific world has this problem, then the scientific world has a real issue.
  • Eugen
    235
    Ok, here's the thing: consciousness exists because:
    - I am wondering if it exists
    - I have the illusion it exists, and to experience illusions, I need to be conscious
    - to believe in reasoning, arguments and scientific proofs, I need to be consciouss
    I can continue, but I don't think I need to, I think providing arguments for something so obvious is simply silly.

    On the other hand, we have a bunch of people saying: consciousness or 1st person experiences do not exist because we don't see them when we perform experiments. Well, my issues with that are:
    - firstly, seeing or hearing or any other observational qualities are consciousness extensions, so if you deny consciousness, you may as well deny the results of your observations;
    - only what science can prove it's valid - well, in this case, the burden of proving this claim is on you. Good luck with that!
  • Athena
    747
    Descartes is having a beer in a bar and when his glass is almost empty the bar tender asks him if wants another beer. Descartes replies, "I think not" and disappears.
  • Kenosha Kid
    519

    24% is merely an upper limit given by that survey. Believing in the possibility of p-zombies doesn't necessarily mean disbelieving in consciousness. An example of a philosophical or scientific publication that assumes consciousness doesn't exist would be useful for the discussion.

    Irreducible consciousness might be what you've heard of. This is basically saying the soul doesn't exist, and that consciousness (as in the self, as opposed to consciousness that the ball is red) is a non-elementary function of certain systems in certain states. Anyone who ever said consciousness didn't exist was presumably labouring under the impression that their words could be seen or heard, i.e. that consciousness was in fact real.
  • Eugen
    235
    Believing in the possibility of p-zombies doesn't necessarily mean disbelieving in consciousness.Kenosha Kid
    - even so, 24% is problematic.
    Irreducible consciousness might be what you've heard of. This is basically saying the soul doesn't exist, and that consciousness (as in the self, as opposed to consciousness that the ball is red) is a non-elementary function of certain systems in certain states. Anyone who ever said consciousness didn't exist was presumably labouring under the impression that their words could be seen or heard, i.e. that consciousness was in fact real.Kenosha Kid

    I am not talking about those who say consciousness is different than most of us believe, I am talking about those who simply deny it. And there are many of them, trust me! Even if 2,4% instead of 24% believe that, it is really problematic.
  • Snakes Alive
    638
    We don't understand it, so a commitment to your current scientific practices being efficacious mans that it can't exist (or else there's something that exists but that your current scientific practices can't understand).

    That's my guess – it's an anxiety about the current feebleness of human inquiry or the social institutions it gets routed through.
  • fdrake
    3.9k
    Maybe it will seem less ridiculous, or you'll have stronger reasons for rejecting eliminitave materialism after reading this.
  • Eugen
    235
    If one says consciousness is a result of neurons interaction and that there's no magic, I wouldn't call it a ridiculous statement. But denying the existence of the 1st person experiences is ridiculous, illogic, and self-contradictory, and I would be really worried about the mental sanity of the person who claimed that.
  • Eugen
    235
    We don't understand it, so a commitment to your current scientific practicesSnakes Alive

    That sounds to me more like religion than what science should be. That's scary!
  • fdrake
    3.9k
    If one says consciousness is a result of neurons interaction and that there's no magic, I wouldn't call it a ridiculous statementEugen

    If someone claims that first person events are identical to neural events then...

    But denying the existence of the 1st person experiences is ridiculous, illogic, and self-contradictory, and I would be really worried about the mental sanity of the person who claimed that.Eugen

    For them there is no resultant "output state" corresponding to our first person consciousness; it isn't a productive (functional; input-output) relationship at all, the relationship between mind states and brain states is instead posited to be one of identity. Compare wondering how someone could ever possibly go on a walk when all they do is put one foot in front of the other. It isn't so much that first person consciousness doesn't exist at all or in any way, it's that you're criticising eliminativists' beliefs based off a reification of mental content; whether that reification itself is justified is a key component of the issue.
  • Eugen
    235
    If someone claims that first person events are equivalent to neural events then...fdrake

    If equivalent = correlation, or how does the subjective reality manifests itself in the objective reality, or vice-versa, that wouldn't be ridiculous. But a correlation is just a correlation, an interface, not the actual thing. First person is fundamentally different from third person, objective is fundamentally different from subjective. So denying the intrinsic aspect of reality just because science does not explain the intrinsic part, it's purely childish.
  • fdrake
    3.9k
    So denying the intrinsic aspect of reality just because science does not explain the intrinsic part, it's purely childishEugen

    If all you want to do is throw names around, it's pretty childish to dismiss a well researched body of work when you've not put in even a little effort into understanding their claims.
  • Kenosha Kid
    519
    - even so, 24% is problematicEugen

    But it isn't 24%. 24% believe p-zombies are possible. Of those, most will believe that humans have consciousness and zombies don't. Without an example of what you mean, it's difficult to imagine that the problem you're asking about exists. I think it's more likely there's been a misunderstanding. Unless you believe that consciousness as a system function isn't consciousness.
  • Eugen
    235
    If all you want to do is throw names around, it's pretty childish to dismiss a well researched body of work when you've not put in even a little effort into understanding their claims.fdrake

    If one says ''If we arrange atoms in this way, we obtain something with consciousness'', I wouldn't disagree. Consciousness may be in fact a result of previous material causes. So that means you can tell everything about it? Does that mean this is all about it? If yes, than 1st person experiences don't exist, because science shows nothing more than a bunch of atoms interacting. Science simply does not tell us more than that and scientists know and accept it in a proportion of minimum 76% according to the poll mentioned above. But there are some scientists who simply do not accept this, so what they do is simply deny the ''extra'' part science cannot reveal.
  • Outlander
    342


    Semantics. You could say fun or love doesn't exist but is a biologic function of.. yadda yadda to prolong and reward survival and/or biologically enriching experiences.
  • Wheatley
    1.1k
    science shows nothing more than a bunch of atoms interacting.Eugen
    This is a very poor view of science. I suggest you go read some biology.
  • Eugen
    235
    But it isn't 24%. 24% believe p-zombies are possible.Kenosha Kid

    In fact, that poll has little to do with my problem here. Even if 2,4% believe this, it's a problem. Even if 1000 scientists believe this, it's problematic.

    Unless you believe that consciousness as a system function isn't consciousness.Kenosha Kid

    I don't have a definitive opinion, but I give a lot of credit to the idea that consciousness appear when some atoms are put in certain positions. Some just think exactly like this, minus the consciousness part ))), and they call the result of the collision of the atoms an illusion, something that does not exist, and that really makes no sense to me.
  • Eugen
    235
    fun or love doesn't exist but is a biologic functionOutlander

    They don't exist, but they are...
  • Mr Bee
    234
    Ok, I wasn't right, but still 24% is absolutely massive and I simply cannot understand how rational people can sustain such a crazy idea. I wouldn't be shocked if a guy on heroine said that, but stating that we are bot conscious is not only crazy, but also anti-scientific. To do science, you need to be consciouss! How could one trust science so nuch if they doubt their own existence? For me, this is just absurd!Eugen

    Isn't the concept of philosophical zombies one that was introduced by the dualists to argue for non-materialism? One of it's greatest champions is David Chalmers, a staunch dualist, versus Dennett, who considers them impossible. So much as there are people who believe in p-zombies then, they're most likely not gonna believe that we ourselves are zombies.
  • Eugen
    235
    This is a very poor view of science. I suggest you go read some biology.Wheatley

    Indeed that was my ''the most reductionist'' personality ))). I do believe biological things are fundamentally different.
  • Eugen
    235
    David Chalmers, a staunch dualist,Mr Bee

    I don't know much about these ''authorities'', but I thought he was a panpsychist, not a dualist. Panpsychists deny dualism. But I don't care that much. As for Dennet, he is, as I've said, a funny ''bag of tricks''.
    Ohhh, by the way, I do not care about ideologies so much, I see that some of you guys have real sensitivities regarding them. If materialism = consciousness does not exist and all that exist is an objective reality that we can observe with the help of science, then I believe materialism is really dumb. And the problem is that most of the guys who say that happen to be materialists. Sorry!
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