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Mind: flavors of monism/dualism

Discussion in 'Philosophy and Religion' started by charlatan, Jun 19, 2019.

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  1. Ren

    Ren Pin's android / The Maker / ≅ INFP

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    Well, doesn’t the rock that you see have the basic power of causing your perception of it? Searle calls this the word to mind direction of causation. By contrast an action has a mind to world direction of causation. A mental state like a desire has a world to mind direction of fit. I think that in the case of perception Searle would say that the conditions of satisfaction of the act are directly dependent on the object’s causal powers and hence its concreteness.

    Does this entail that you reject direct realism as a theory of perception? Searle has interesting counters to illusionism and the argument from science. He basically says both arguments are fallacious, and more specifically examples of the genetic fallacy. The fact you need inference to establish the causal powers of an object doesn’t mean you don’t perceive the object directly rather than a representation or ‘appearance’ of it.

    Searle believes Hume’s argument about induction is as impressive as it is misleading and just wrong. His point is that we only see a problem with it because we see it through the lens of the deductive, as if every datum of reality necessitated being arrived at deductively in order to be established firmly. Searle believes that is not true of the domain of the empirical and of the discovery of laws of nature. (I make his argument seem a bit weak here but it is actually more developed in the book I’m reading.)
     
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  2. Ren

    Ren Pin's android / The Maker / ≅ INFP

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    Did you mean an ontological reduction of mind? Searle does hold the view that consciousness reduces causally to brain states in a neurobiological sense.

    His main argument against panpsychism is not that it is a high level feature, but rather than one of the properties of consciousness is its being unified as a ‘conscious field’. So basically he doesn’t see how panpsychism can account for the unity of consciousness. I could unpack the argument in more detail but out of fear of distorting it I will revisit it briefly first.
     
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  3. Hostarius

    Hostarius Gimme that WOAD

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  4. Ren

    Ren Pin's android / The Maker / ≅ INFP

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    LOL well, yeah we’re discussing Searle at the moment, and he is very quotable :D

    Edit: joke aside though, I have to be careful or old Johnny Searle will become to me what Popper is to wolly!
     
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  5. Hostarius

    Hostarius Gimme that WOAD

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    I'm so happy you appreciate his work, Ren, he's a favourite of mine :)

    A good analytic.
     
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  6. Ren

    Ren Pin's android / The Maker / ≅ INFP

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    Yeah, thanks again so much for insisting I should read him! He’s already becoming a favorite and I want to read everything he’s done now. He combines originality and willingness to challenge tradition with astonishing clarity and ‘non-showiness’ of expression. Plus, he can be pretty damn funny!
     
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    charlatan

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    @Ren -- short answer is, yes, I accept I can see rocks, not just see 'experiences of rocks' -- what that means is I have an experience of the rock, and that experience was caused by the light bouncing off the rock and hitting my biological apparatus. To be clear, I was arguing against austere physicalism in that part, not Searle -- an account that says something like "the red light hits my retina, and causes the ontologically subjective experience of red" would if anything help my point, see below.

    Again, not responding to Searle/rather to a view he rejects (but giving my own reasons for rejecting it) -- I was responding to austere physicalism in that passage. Yes, the rock does have this causal power. Remember that austere physicalism means nothing but mathematics and causal. No color qualia over and above mathematics and causal relations, in very stark contrast with Searle's view.


    I slightly regret mentioning Hume, as his conclusions are controversial/my point isn't about induction... I mentioned him as a historical note, rather, as one of the first to consider such thought experiments. The point is, rather, that it's widely held, and I think rightly so, that causal connections/laws of nature are discovered a posteriori -- when I do an experiment, I can always coherently imagine that it will go otherwise than the laws of nature predict.
    The reason this poses an epistemic worry for the austere physicalist (who holds that mathematical facts and laws of nature are THE ONLY facts about the universe) is that at least when doing the experiment, I must rely on my conception of rocks, microscopes, etc, that does not presuppose what causal connections will hold among them. On austere physicalism, though, my conception of things must be purely mathematical, when I am not presupposing what laws of nature they obey.
    What that means is I'm trying to discover laws of nature among things whose nature is otherwise specified purely mathematically -- i.e. apparently indistinguishable from abstract objects. If that is so, when I do an experiment, why should I conclude the relation I noted between the states I observed is causal, not merely mathematical?

    What I'm saying is the fact that I see red light through the concrete color experience of red (rather than through some abstractly characterized mathematical brain state) is very important in my mind as enabling me to conceptualize it as concrete.

    Some more intuition...seeing how this fits with Searle's account of direct realism:
    Compare "the red light caused the concrete experience of red in me" with "the red light caused a mathematical state in my brain" -- on the first account of color perception, I'm inclined to think of the red light as concrete. In the second account, I'd say the use of the word 'cause' is a misnomer... why would I suppose my relation to the red light is causal rather than merely mathematical if the so-called 'effect' in me (the mathematically characterized brain state that is the austere physicalist surrogate for qualia of red) isn't something I have any non-mathematical account of, and the so-called 'cause', the red light, is something I have only a mathematical account of (wavelengths, frequencies)?


    I was of course just giving the gist of what I took away, which is that Searle takes the idea that consciousness seems to be a feature of the brain very seriously (i.e. a very particular higher level phenomenon). But I am very familiar with the specific nature of Searle's objections, and let me explain how I don't think they'd emerge if you didn't already come with the presupposition that consciousness is biological/very particular higher level (of course, this isn't a beef I have -- I think Searle does think this, whether or not it is his reason for rejecting panpsychism, and I tend to on first pass agree more than not that we should start there).... alternately, Searle is grossly oversimplifying panpsychism, which also seems possible and perhaps I was giving him the charitable interpretation too freely.... but for the sake of this post, let's say my goal is to explain how, if Searle does NOT grossly oversimplify panpsychism, I don't see a way to understand his objections independent of the 'consciousness is very particularly higher level' presumption/slant/bias/intuition/etc

    First, to summarize, I take Searle's objection as not just being that we need to account for a unified field of experience, but also that it seems to occur in discrete units: he often says there is a place where my consciousness ends and yours begins.

    One option for panpsychism is that the universe has a subject (called cosmopanpsychism): that would avoid the issue about unified fields (the universe would have a unified field). But it would face the challenge of explaining the discrete unit of my consciousness: I'm certainly not aware of your thoughts and feelings directly.

    The other option is at the lower micro-level -- this means my parts are conscious. But then, Searle asks, if my particles are all conscious, and my consciousness is constituted by them, where does my consciousness end and my clothes' consciousness begin? What's more, how do the consciousnesses of my particles bring forth a unified experience of my own? Not just choppy individual micro-particle experiences?

    What you can see is at least a natural consequence of Searle's objection might be held to be that consciousness is a feature of very particular higher order systems (which I think Searle does ultimately believe), as only this accounts for both their discreteness and their unity.

    But, you may say, that's perhaps a natural inference one might make from Searle's requirements of unity + discreteness -- is he actually presupposing that consciousness has to be a feature of very particular higher level systems/is that ultimately his reason for rejecting panpsychism?

    Here's why I felt he was (the alternate seems to be that he is oversimplifying panpsychism grossly). Why couldn't there be a conscious subject aware of both the phenomenal qualities of your and my mental states AND one aware of just those of mine and one aware of just those of yours? Obviously the bigger subject aware of both would not be you or me, but it's coherent to suppose there is a subject experiencing both our phenomenal qualities as well as one experiencing mine and one experiencing yours... as might be the case in some versions of cosmopanpsychism that are defended for various theoretical reasons. I'm not suggesting that's what I believe is fact, but it certainly doesn't seem incoherent.
    Second, why must consciousness be either unified or occur in the parts? On various sophisticated accounts of panpsychism, it's suggested there's some way particles in my brain stand in relation to one another that leads there to be a combined unified subject of experience, but in addition, there are also discrete subjects of experience attached to the microphysical particles.

    The only natural way one can seem to rule out this is if one already is presupposing that consciousness must occur at the higher levels, and at particular ones at that (otherwise, the 'highest' level is just including the whole universe, not just its parts, as a single huge subject)


    As it happens, I tend to agree with the intuition that we should take seriously that consciousness happens at very particular higher levels -- I don't think we should rule out the other possibilities too hastily, of course, but if I'm right that some of Searle's squeamishness does at least correlate with (even if it's not reducible to) his BN attitude, I'd say I share that squeamishness.

    Besides this general presupposition that consciousness is a feature of the high-level-biological, the only other reason I can imagine Searle takes the line he does is that he really didn't think about the fact that there could be both a combined subject to the brain and microsubjects to the particles in the brain.
    So I guess I was being charitable in suggesting that what's behind his position is a biological/high-level prejudice. The less charitable take would be that he simply oversimplified panpsychism, which is also possible.
     
    #67 charlatan, Jan 14, 2020
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    charlatan

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    Yeah in Searle's terminology that's right, I meant ontological reduction is not possible....when I said a causal reduction is not possible, I didn't mean 'the causal powers of consciousness can't be reduced to the causal powers of neurons' -- rather, I meant something different from Searle's terminology use, i.e. "the reality of consciousness cannot be reduced to the reality of any set of causal powers the way austere physicalists would attempt"
    What I meant is he agrees you cannot reduce the ontology of consciousness to entirely causal features of the world ie. you cannot reduce the first person ontology to the third person ontology. Its causal powers are nothing over and above the causal powers of the brain. But it does not follow consciousness itself is nothing over and above the causal powers of the brain.
     
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    charlatan

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    By the way, I should point out and emphasize that I actually think austere (this implies non-Searlean) physicalists may likely accept my charge (some I know explicitly seem to do so). I don't think I'm mischaracterizing their position much if at all, so much as they might be very happy to accept the charge and say they can't take seriously that it would be any other way! It's one of those cases of willingness to swallow what seems to me a very bitter consequence of their view.

    That is, I think our basic empirical concepts are plausibly without descriptive content (or at least concrete descriptive content) to such physicalists. When I see purple light for the first time, I form a concept of it, and that concept would, on an anti-physicalist or fancy-physicalist view actually involve significant descriptive content -- at least it would involve my sense of the experience of purple!!
    But on the austere-physicalist notion, my first concept of purple light might plausibly involve *no significant descriptive content* -- it's only after noting causal connections that I gain any (concrete) descriptive content.

    Another way of saying this might be that concrete knowledge is entirely a posteriori -- there is a sense in which we really cannot on pure rational grounds rule out that our world is just an abstract mathematical structure, since no atomic empirical concept is able to uncover the world's concreteness.
     
    #69 charlatan, Jan 16, 2020
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  10. Ren

    Ren Pin's android / The Maker / ≅ INFP

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    Ok, so I have a question about this, which may seem naive. You're saying that it is at least plausible that the world may be entirely abstract. But at the same time does this not mean that if so, this would require giving an account of the universe that makes no mention of causality? I mean, causal powers are the hallmark of a concrete object. How could an entirely non-causal account of the universe be given?

    Again, I don't see how the world could just be an abstract mathematical structure and cause our experience of it, regardless of the form of that experience, at the same time.

    Also, what do you mean here by "noting causal connections" prior to accessing the concrete descriptive content? Causal connections between what? The brain, which is on this interpretation purely mathematical, can nevertheless note causal connections between other purely mathematical entities? I don't see how the purely mathematical could be causally accessible in that way.

    As for the idea that concrete knowledge is entirely a posteriori, I still do not understand this view (at best); or find it quite unintelligent (at worst—I'm not saying this is your view by the way, just to be clear). The abstract-mathematical lacks the causal powers for experiential access in the first place. Experience presupposes concreteness; or else experience must be some kind of illusion.

    I think this view would pose massive problems when it comes to the question of identity. My experiences make me who I am on the conventional Humean account. Your experiences make you who you are. What makes the identity of the 'subject' experiencing both your phenomenal qualities and mine? I actually think this view is incoherent. Basically, the first-person nature of my experiences on the one hand, and the first-person nature of your experiences on the other, cannot be summarily synthesized into the first-person experiences of that other 'bigger subject'. What would be that subject's first-person experiences? An addition of my first-person and yours? But this is not a quantitative matter. You cannot simply add one to the other to obtain the 'bigger' one. Both your first-person experiential realm and mine are qualitatively unique.

    Another objection I would raise is that even assuming the view is coherent, it does not really seem a better, more parsimonious option than BN or the various species of neutral monism. What you end up getting is a virtual infinity of subjects each with their (as I currently see it incoherent) first-person experiential fields. What are the philosophical benefits of this kind of view?
     
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    charlatan

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    Haha I think we need to go to the drawingboard because I lost you in the Ne sea! Yes, abstract things lack causal powers, and the point is that, in a world (the austere physicalist one) where the *sole* concrete facts are causal powers (and the only other facts are nonconcrete/mathematical facts), I see there powerful reason for epistemic skepticism: I don't think in such a world we could be justified in believing there are causal powers. So it's not that I'm saying that austere physicalism is itself positing an abstract world, or that an abstract world has causal powers -- I'm saying there's a case for epistemic skepticism about those causal powers, leaving us with being not sufficiently justified in believing the world ISN'T abstract.

    The reason is that ultimately, our atomic empirical concepts cannot themselves involve laws of nature -- we can clearly conceive of laws of nature having been other than they are. We must do experiments using concepts that don't presuppose what laws of nature will hold. But that means our atomic empirical concepts of red light, trees, etc, have to in some sense be empty of concrete content -- it's as if we're noting 'regularities' among things that we could easily doubt are in any way non-mathematical and trying to infer what their causal powers are. Why even think they have causal powers in such a case?

    That might be, by the way -- this objection isn't against panpsychism but against certain ways of combining subjects (the co-consciousness relation is just one possible way) i.e. you want to say the new subject's phenomenal experience can't be the naive sum-total but must in some sense be new.
    OK, the point would remain unchanged: there are 3 subjects: you, me, and a combined version (which isn't given by a naive but rather subtler combination relation).Or more plausibly, the subjects of each particle in my brain, and the bigger subject that is me.
    I'm not quite convinced the naive-combination is incoherent but that, I'm personally willing to entertain you might be right (as a counterpoint as to why con-consciousness seems to possibly work fine or is not obviously wrong, one subject is sight-less but hears Mozart ... the other is deaf but sees a painting of a flower....the third subject experiences mozart while seeing the painting), but it's definitely besides the point as that's hardly a requirement of panpsychism -- what I don't think is incoherent is that there are both the micro and macro subjects, and that the macro one is generated when the micro ones stand in appropriate relations to one another.

    This would address the unity issue -- it's not the microsubjects alone so much as certain relations they stand to each other that necessitates the unified macro-subject. The discreteness issue is addressed by the fact that we've specified precisely when subjects combine, probably starting with subjects at the rock bottom attached to microphysical particles, so that tells us every 'chunk' of consciousness there is.
    I think the burden is heavily on the person claiming that is incoherent (not saying you are, I understand you were just skeptical of the specific combination relation of co-consciousness) -- it does not seem obviously so. That doesn't mean I think it's plausible but claiming incoherence is very strong a claim/I think probably unjustified at this point of our knowledge.


    I'm not sure it's less parsimonious, it might be, but just as with MWI of QM, it's not the number of entities (worlds) but the simplicity of the principle (all follows from the wavefunction) that matters. Some views of QM may keep one world but need to introduce additional parameters to solve the measurement problem, rendering them simple in terms of worlds but less parsimonious as a theory to write down. If there are many subjects, but the principle by which they combine is simple and elegant, that's terrific -- in particular, if we can say there are certain kinds of subjects attached to each microphysical particle and certain relations they can stand in to each other to combine to form macrosubjects, that's basically as good as the parsimony of fundamental physics). If there is no way in which the micro-subjects+ relations among them really determine how the macro-subject supposedly necessitated by them will form, that's a bigger problem.

    However, I do prefer neutral monism (which it seems you/I are yet to see properly distinguished from BN at least in spirit). I personally don't see the motivation for putting consciousness at the bottom and tend to take seriously the idea that it happens at higher levels myself. I think some people say that 'out of non-consciousness, consciousness can't come' but honestly such intuitive principles are unconvincing to me, because it seems equally intuitive to me that micro-subjects wouldn't combine to form a macro-subject.

    One other motive to avoid neutral monism is neutral monism poses the worst threat of mysterianism of all views -- we have NO IDEA what the neutral property might be! But I guess that seems more based on wishing consciousness were easy to explain than an argument against the view.

    Also, if your neutral monism is not reductionist in some way, you might also argue panpsychism avoids having many distinct 'types' (neutral, physical, qualitative).

    It (neutral monism) still seems to me most likely to be right, though that does mean our prospects for explaining consciousness ever in the future may not be all happiness and roses.
     
    #71 charlatan, Jan 16, 2020
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    charlatan

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    As with many occasions, I am amused, because here I am defending panpsychism when it's not actually that high on my list!!I guess I am defending its coherence, though, not plausibility.
     
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  13. Ren

    Ren Pin's android / The Maker / ≅ INFP

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    That's pretty amusing, but that's also fun isn't it? The majority of the time I don't defend views I actually hold. I have a similar approach to yours. It's just fun!

    So be reassured that I'm not misinterpreting you as holding the position that panpsychism is top of your list. I know it isn't.
     
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  14. Ren

    Ren Pin's android / The Maker / ≅ INFP

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    Ok, I think I get you now. You're roughly saying: if we take seriously the austere physicalist view then we encounter the problem of epistemic skepticism.

    But this problem would not be encountered (or at least not as seriously) if we accept the existence of qualia.

    In a sense you're saying causality alone cannot guarantee that there is a concrete world because we cannot have a priori certainty of causal relations. Causality is not something we see, it's something we infer. We do not experience causality and therefore it is always already an abstraction. And thus it is only really qualia, which are posited as immediately concrete rather than as an abstraction of the concrete (causality), that provide a good safeguard against epistemic skepticism.

    I'll answer the rest later but I wanted to make sure I got that right first.
     
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    charlatan

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    Yep. Basically, if austere physicalism is construed as having two components

    - abstract stuff: mathematical notions
    - laws of nature (i.e. the laws of physics) which tells us what causal relations hold

    we clearly discover laws of nature through doing experiments --and those experiments where we note repetitions that support the laws of nature are done using our sense experience, and cannot presume what laws of nature hold. Trouble is, if you delete laws of nature from the above, you're left with nothing concrete!!!
    I.e. our most basic empirical concepts are devoid of concrete descriptive content.

    And if you look at this closely, it's not surprising at all -- the leading austere physicalist theories of qualitative concepts are things like they're illusory or they're nondescriptive and just names for brain states.


    The advantage of having a more robust notion of the qualitative is that our most basic contact with reality before we make the mathematical models would then tell us something concrete!
    And isn't it intuitive too --- independent of a rock's qualitative feel, why would I even feel inclined to think of it as concrete?


    I've seen austere physicalists who basically accept this sort of thing. I think my point is sure you can accept that we need to basically blindly believe in the concreteness of our empirical concepts for pragmatic reasons, but I'd say if we view epistemic justification as a continuum, certainly having the qualitative aspect there makes me feel much more justified in believing I'm discovering causal relations when I notice repetitions in my experiments.

    This gets into one of the main motives for categorical properties --- it's already pretty weird to think of there metaphysically being causes/effects, but no account of what those causes and effects are concretely!
    But I personally don't like ruling out a view just because it seems metaphysically too thin.... maybe the metaphysics of the world is just weird like that.

    But on the other hand, I like this epistemic skepticism thing, because it seems to represent a definite cost. I'm not saying we couldn't do science on the austere physicalist's background, just that I think we'd be a lot blinder/less justified.
     
    #75 charlatan, Jan 24, 2020
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    charlatan

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    yeah, basically laws of nature must come second in our empirical theorizing to our most basic contact with empirical reality. We notice repeated success of our experiments, and laws of nature are something we're forced into. But basically, this means the whole time we were doing the experiments, there's a sense we were blind as to the concrete nature of the things we were manipulating.

    Imagine searle's direct realism, but where instead of red light causing a red experience, we said red light causing *nothing discernibly concrete*/an abstractly characterized mathematical brain state. If the effect isn't discernibly concrete in me, why would I presume there was something that causally affected me?? Why not think my relation to the red light is an abstract mathematical relation?

    There's a common hope among austere physicalists that you can just avoid saying *what is doing the causing* -- and simply say *something is doing the causing, and here is the mathematical structure of the causal web*.
    I don't like that already, but I so far think the best argument against it beyond just finding it a thin metaphysics is showing the epistemic cost.
     
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    charlatan

    charlatan Change Me

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    Yeah it's great fun, and it also helps me learn about the other positions that I prefer less

    I guess so far, I haven't found anything totally wrong with panpsychism, it's just mainly I find putting consciousness at base unmotivated at the end of the day.... it's tempting because we feel qualia are so familiar! Why not put them at bottom instead of the horribly mysterious neutral... the trouble is I think the mind body problem ultimately arises from problems on both ends, not just one (i.e. it's not just our physics that's incomplete, but I think we probably don't fully get the qualitative either):

    - I think based on our conception of qualia, it's actually not clear why qualia have to be causally effective...I think they very probably ARE, but it's not clear how...so epiphenomenalism is coherent on our present knowledge of qualia (which is likely wrong)

    - it's definitely unclear how to get qualia from 'traditional physics' -- which tells us nothing categorical, only dispositional...

    So I lean that both notions are things we don't understand fully, so the natural view (neutral) would seek to integrate them by finding a deeper base. That combined with the powerful sense qualia seem to emerge at high level brain activity, I don't see why the first option would be to seek them at rock bottom in nature.

    I think hard reasoning leads us here, and sure the 'neutral' leaves the strongest threat of never solving consciousness. But I think it's better to be realistic and try the hard stuff!!!
     
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  18. Ren

    Ren Pin's android / The Maker / ≅ INFP

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    I agree that epiphenomenalism is not incoherent. I just think that what makes it relatively unattractive as a theory for me is not its lack of coherence but its 1) counter-intuitiveness; 2) lack of explanatory power. It's quite a basic/superficial descriptive theory in a lot of ways. So while it may not be incoherent, I think it's weak based on the fact that its counter-intuitiveness is not compensated for by promising explanatory power and depth.

    I don't think any theory has a claim on truth anyway (I'm a Popperian in this sense, I suppose) so to me what matters is how much it can explain and at what cost. The cost seems big enough for epiphenomenalism. Do you have objective criteria for ranking various theories?
     
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    charlatan

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    Yeah, so I fully think the same; ultimately, I'm also more talking of the apparent coherence of epiphenomenalism, in the sense that once we expand our theory of qualia, it may be that qualia cannot in fact be causally ineffective. It's just whatever we presently know of qualia on a priori grounds doesn't rule it out.

    But for example, if we expand our theory to something like neutral monism, in some flavors, it may be to get qualia you must instantiate the neutral (e.g. qualia could be a higher order feature of some combinations of the neutral ... this is kinda Searle-esque except he won't say neutral...the way heat is a higher order feature of the motion of molecules), and instantiating the neutral implies instantiating some causal powers. It just doesn't seem without some such intermediary, we necessarily get causal powers. For what it's worth, the coherence of epiphenomenalism is still consistent with the idea that in our world, qualia have causal powers!!! The coherence simply tells us that there are possible worlds where they don't have such powers.
    Panpsychism already goes the step of ensuring that they have causal powers in our world, since they generally are the intrinsic nature of particles of physics (so they have precisely the causal powers of the physics we know and love) -- it's just neutral monism has these advantages + it seems to me possibly more!

    I'm happy with the whole explanatory power idea too. The use of incoherence is more that it tells us something about what we know on robustly a priori grounds, based on our present theory, rather than that it's a guide to what theories to accept (all coherent theories are not equal, certainly).

    So when I tend to rank theories where consciousness is causally ineffective lower, I'm also doing it on explanatory power grounds.
    Personally, I must confess that I also dislike the idea of causal powers or laws of nature being the rock-bottom notion of physics.... mostly because on such a view, it seems coherent to suppose electrons don't repel each other, and such things (in some possible world, don't have the causal powers they do in the actual world).

    I tend to think based on what we know, it's more reasonable to suppose physics entities have to follow the laws of nature they do in our world, in any other world too -- it doesn't seem to be an accident that electrons repel so much as something intrinsic to electrons. But, causal notions by themselves don't reveal what it is about electrons that forces them to repel --- something else about them which necessitates the causal relations would, on the other hand.

    I'd like a theory where whatever is at bottom 'has to' have the causal powers it does in every possible world, and also has to instantiate qualia.
    If qualia are at rock bottom as in panpsychism, unless we revise qualia to expand the notion (which seems neutral-ish anyway then -- it would keep qualia at base but still suggest the rock-bottom nature has to involve something beyond qualia and mathematical-causal notions.... ), given the coherence of epiphenomenalism, it's hard to see how we'd get that kind of theory I'm looking for on any genuinely non-neutral panpsychist grounds.

    Ultimately, that's why I'm led to neutral monism/panprotopsychism as the best balance of all the explanatory needs.
    But it's also the hardest theory to work out the practical details of! Precisely because we don't know what neutral properties would be at the base.
    Some skeptics actually suggest while they believe in panprotopsychism, they think the rock bottom protophenomenal properties are permanently out of our grasp, and thus the explanation of consciousness is as well.
     
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  20. Ren

    Ren Pin's android / The Maker / ≅ INFP

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    Sorry, I'm not sure I follow. Can you give an example of causal power that qualia could have in our world on an epiphenomenalist interpretation?

    I understand that you're relying on the distinction between contingent and necessary properties.

    Yes, I agree with that. I actually tend to believe one of the key challenges is precisely to revise and expand the concept of qualia.


    Do you mean the mysterians? I'm curious what kind of argument those skeptics offer to defend such a view.
     
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