Consciousness, New Thinking About

JGC9 jgcasey at hotkey.net.au
Sat Jun 15 19:54:32 EST 2002


extract from John H comments below:
> > ... why evolution went to so much trouble to create an
> > 'information processing'  device that then deceives its
> > 'owner' as to what is really going on!

Because the 'information processing' device _is_ the 'owner'.

It is not a question of deception but of function.

If it 'chooses' to do something and 'finds it can' then it has
'free will'. The idea that 'free will' would have to mean
'without a cause' is something doesn't make sense. It is
based on the religious concept of a 'soul' that somehow
can 'override' a maladaptive or malfunctioning brain.It
is based on the concept that this imaginary soul has the
power to choose 'good' over 'evil'.

extract from "DJ" comments below:
> > If our society was to truly embrace determinism anybody
> > could go and kill whoever they liked without fear of legal
> > retribution

Why?  If someone is accepted as crazy in the current legal sense
it doesn't mean we will allow them to act in an anti social way.
Indeed I believe acceptance that we have no uncaused behaviours
will change the way we deal with anti social behaviours to a more
pragmatic and effective manner. Our punishment systems now
only aggravate the situation. They are counter productive because
they are based a false belief we have 'free will'.




"DJ" <DJ at hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:newscache$mr0rxg$gn2$1 at maggie.netlink.com.au...
>
> John H. <John at overhere> wrote in message
> news:apsO8.1$ea5.294 at ozemail.com.au...
> >
> > Not new thinking about consciousness, the idea of Wegner re the illusion
> of
> > "I" is well discussed amongst neuroscientists wide and far. I virtually
> take
> > it as a given and I'm no neuroscientist, more a vagabond setting up camp
> > here. Gazziniga will blow your mind re the illusory aspect and in
Pinker's
> > How the Mind Works, he devotes a subsection with the title "Kidding
> > Ourserlves", wherein he in his usual erudite way summarises the research
> > indicating that our brains really go to a certain amount of trouble to
> keep
> > us Misinformed. Anyway, Libet sortta killed the poor little fella in my
> > skull and that's a long time ago now.
> >
> > Most if not all neuroscience evidence is against free will, I find the
> idea
> > absurd. It's a bit like defining the 'executive functions' in the brain,
> as
> > if we don't have enough ghosts in the machine we have to go and create a
> few
> > more. As I once said to a friend, the whole universe is the executive
> > function ... . How can we be in control of ourselves? Brains create us,
> not
> > vice versa. Its one hell of an illusion though and raises the question
as
> to
> > why evolution went to so much trouble to create an 'information
> processing'
> > device that then deceives its 'owner' as to what is really going on!
> >
> Maybe the deception that you speak of is necessary because the illusion of
> free will brings with it the illusion of individual responsibility.  If
our
> society was to truly embrace determinism anybody could go and kill whoever
> they liked without fear of legal retribution.  It's fair to assume that
the
> laws of the jungle also incorporate the individual responsibility factor.
> i.e. We might not have evolved to this point without the illusion of free
> will.  If you kill your enemy you're held responsible so someone kills
you.
>
> > The feeling is not illusion, I do read the sentence, but the I that
reads
> > the sentence is an illusion.
>
> Hmmm... Maybe each of us is a different "instance" of the same conscious
> entity.  Nonetheless real both physically and mentally.  Unique,
individual
> consciousness might result from "filtering" that single conscious entity
> through each unique physical entity.  This possibility raises the question
> of how each individual consciousness is able to interact with the single
> conscious entity.  In computing terms, can they update eachother's data?
> Sorry, I'm just pissing into the wind too.
>
> DJ
>
>





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