Bitcoin Forum
October 21, 2017, 06:42:28 AM *
News: Latest stable version of Bitcoin Core: 0.15.0.1  [Torrent]. (New!)
 
   Home   Help Search Donate Login Register  
Pages: [1]
  Print  
Author Topic: The Primacy of Consciousness - Peter Russell  (Read 3335 times)
interlagos
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Activity: 497


View Profile
October 19, 2012, 10:32:28 PM
 #1

Already in the beginning it asks the right questions making it worth sharing with everyone:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-d4ugppcRUE

Enjoy!

PS: I can recommend this video to anyone with scientific background especially in physics. Peter Russell is a physicist and his approach is to have a scientific argument when talking about consciousness rather than rely on stuff like perception and intuition to describe it. The breakthrough comes from understanding the nature of light.

Also nice quote from the comments section of the video:
"The I that is trying to find who you are is who you are. You are that Beingness. As you say, the eye (or I) cannot see itself. And that beingness does have an inherent existence. It depends upon nothing else. And is always present (even if you don't notice it most the time)" Peter Russell.
1508568148
Hero Member
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 1508568148

View Profile Personal Message (Offline)

Ignore
1508568148
Reply with quote  #2

1508568148
Report to moderator
Advertised sites are not endorsed by the Bitcoin Forum. They may be unsafe, untrustworthy, or illegal in your jurisdiction. Advertise here.
1508568148
Hero Member
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 1508568148

View Profile Personal Message (Offline)

Ignore
1508568148
Reply with quote  #2

1508568148
Report to moderator
1508568148
Hero Member
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 1508568148

View Profile Personal Message (Offline)

Ignore
1508568148
Reply with quote  #2

1508568148
Report to moderator
1508568148
Hero Member
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 1508568148

View Profile Personal Message (Offline)

Ignore
1508568148
Reply with quote  #2

1508568148
Report to moderator
interlagos
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Activity: 497


View Profile
October 23, 2012, 10:58:40 PM
 #2

A few more videos on the topic which seem to line up nicely:

Bashar - Reality is in your consciousness
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5LLq96yzONo

Bashar - Appreciate Existence! You Exist!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XFsU7qBT75E
FirstAscent
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Activity: 812


View Profile
October 24, 2012, 03:00:00 AM
 #3

Read David Chalmers.
interlagos
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Activity: 497


View Profile
October 24, 2012, 10:51:35 AM
 #4

Read David Chalmers.

Thanks for the info!

So according to wikipedia article David Chalmers is best known for his formulation of the notion of a "hard problem of consciousness", which could be stated "why does the feeling which accompanies awareness of sensory information exist at all?". Chalmers is also famous for his commitment to the logical (though, importantly, not natural) possibility of "philosophical zombies" (mentioned in the video in OP).

All in all, knowing what the "actual problem" with consciousness is and asking the "right questions" is a good start. Still many people today mistakenly attribute their consciousness to the chemical/electrical processes in their brains failing to accept the undeniable existence of their own self.
Who knows maybe those philosophical zombies aren't philosophical at all Smiley
FirstAscent
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Activity: 812


View Profile
October 24, 2012, 08:51:24 PM
 #5

Many people actually think they're addressing the "Hard Problem" or don't comprehend what the "Hard Problem" is. They go on with their studies of the "Easy Problem", which is fine and necessary, but the solution to the "Easy Problem" does not explain consciousness.

Daniel Dennet (you should read Daniel Dennett, by the way) is someone who thinks he's providing a solution to the "Hard Problem" by claiming it doesn't exist.

What is the Easy Problem? It's determining how the brain allows us to function. It's not an easy problem, but in comparison to the Hard Problem, it is easy. The Easy Problem is about discovering the mechanical processes within the brain that process and store input, and output appropriate responses to enable survival, and general functioning within society.

What is the Hard Problem? It's determining why such mechanical processes lead to a sense of experience, a sense of awareness, etc. By default, we humans believe that most mechanical processes have no sense of experience, or sense of awareness. For example, the mechanical processes of rust, corrosion, wind, digestion, engines, motors, cell phones, etc.

What are philosophical zombies? They are the imaginative result of a thought experiment, in which we could conceive of the idea of people existing which do not have awareness, yet go about their lives in such a way, that when observing them and interacting with them, one cannot tell that they are not actually experiencing the world around them if one considers that there doesn't seem to be any reasonable explanation as to why we would ascribe the sense of experience to a mechanical process.

I believe the ultimate explanation is that all matter either has a complementary yet undiscovered attribute, that, for lack of a better word, shall be called 'proto-consciousness'. What this means is that all matter in the universe has a quality attached to it which is consciousness, but in general, unrealized. Certain combinations, structures, and various chemical interactions amplify this quality of consciousness. Discovering this proto-consciousness will require more than studying neuron interactions. Another individual worth reading is Stuart Hameroff.
myrkul
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Activity: 532


FIAT LIBERTAS RVAT CAELVM


View Profile WWW
October 24, 2012, 09:43:02 PM
 #6

I believe the ultimate explanation is that all matter either has a complementary yet undiscovered attribute, that, for lack of a better word, shall be called 'proto-consciousness'. What this means is that all matter in the universe has a quality attached to it which is consciousness, but in general, unrealized. Certain combinations, structures, and various chemical interactions amplify this quality of consciousness. Discovering this proto-consciousness will require more than studying neuron interactions.

So.... A sufficiently large, chemically and structurally complex rock might be conscious? How would we even know?

BTC1MYRkuLv4XPBa6bGnYAronz55grPAGcxja
Need Dispute resolution? Public Key ID: 0x11D341CF
No person has the right to initiate force, threat of force, or fraud against another person or their property. VIM VI REPELLERE LICET
FirstAscent
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Activity: 812


View Profile
October 25, 2012, 04:01:50 AM
 #7

I believe the ultimate explanation is that all matter either has a complementary yet undiscovered attribute, that, for lack of a better word, shall be called 'proto-consciousness'. What this means is that all matter in the universe has a quality attached to it which is consciousness, but in general, unrealized. Certain combinations, structures, and various chemical interactions amplify this quality of consciousness. Discovering this proto-consciousness will require more than studying neuron interactions.

So.... A sufficiently large, chemically and structurally complex rock might be conscious? How would we even know?

I cannot tell if you are engaging in pugnacious prattle or conceptive cogitations on the matter. Assuming the latter, you should ask yourself, is there a threshold at which consciousness ceases to be, or is it all a matter of degree?
FirstAscent
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Activity: 812


View Profile
October 25, 2012, 04:08:43 AM
 #8


Thanks! It was very watchable, and I even got away with listening (without viewing) to bits of it while doing light work.

Roger Penrose is another name I would keep an eye out for. He wrote "Shadows of the Mind" back in 1994, and although I found some parts very hard to read, the reason I liked it is because he seems to reject the idea of the "singularity" fiction where machines eventually become conscious. He used mathematical reasoning to show that consciousness is non-algorithmic and therefore cannot be programmed into any computer, regardless of technology - it's basically a paradox.

I guess a lot of futurists hate him for that, and I'd be interested to see what else he has come up with more recently.

Roger Penrose and Stuart Hameroff have coauthored papers together.

All that aside, I side with the notion that a computer program currently executing embodies none of the aspects of consciousness as we would know it. It would be a classical example of a philosophical zombie in action. However, I also contend that consciousness would and should reside in the hardware which the computer program would be running, but whatever degree of consciousness it would be experiencing would be largely independent of the internal subjects the computer program is processing.

Given my statement about proto-consciousness, some degree of consciousness exists everywhere, and thus the computer hardware could have consciousness, even if it is less than a bacterium. But it would only be coincidental if that consciousness was related to the subject matter of the computer program's cogitations. Just because machine instructions are moving and changing data within the program, does not mean there is a one to one correspondence to the idea of consciousness we might expect.
Roger_Murdock
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Activity: 342



View Profile
October 25, 2012, 12:00:21 PM
 #9

I believe the ultimate explanation is that all matter either has a complementary yet undiscovered attribute, that, for lack of a better word, shall be called 'proto-consciousness'. What this means is that all matter in the universe has a quality attached to it which is consciousness, but in general, unrealized. Certain combinations, structures, and various chemical interactions amplify this quality of consciousness. Discovering this proto-consciousness will require more than studying neuron interactions.

So.... A sufficiently large, chemically and structurally complex rock might be conscious? How would we even know?

I'm curious, did you watch the video? If not, you really should. It's excellent. But to answer your questions, "yes" and "we wouldn't."  It seems to me that the only 100% undeniable, self-affirming truth is your own consciousness / existence.  You can't be sure that your experiences are "real," but there's no way to deny that you are having an experience.  You also can't know that everyone around you is not a "philosophical zombie." My take on the consciousness of a rock is that it IS conscious because you are the rock and you are conscious.  We're all one.  It's just that we often experience "ourselves" as existing separate and apart from "the rest of the universe."  And that seems to me one of those paradoxes that's just built into the nature of existence.  The universe is both one and many. But you couldn't have "oneness" without duality and vice versa.   So my intuition is that the universe is a single conscious entity that experiences itself from an infinite number of perspectives.  Is "rock" one of those perspectives? Probably, although my guess is that it's not a particularly interesting one. 
herzmeister
Legendary
*
Offline Offline

Activity: 1764



View Profile WWW
October 27, 2012, 01:18:00 PM
 #10

He used mathematical reasoning to show that consciousness is non-algorithmic and therefore cannot be programmed into any computer, regardless of technology - it's basically a paradox.

I think the right question to ask here is the one about the instinct of self-preservation. Philosophical materialists (like Dawkins et al) would argue that all other aspects of consciousness are deducible from that. The complexity of decision making in survival strategies would sooner or later require some fuzzy logic and may very well spark the very thing that we call consciousness. We also wouldn't be zombies as kindness and positive social interaction would prove to be beneficial survival strategies.

So, would a system complex enough develop such an "instinct" for self-preservation out of itself? Did such systems merely emerge on this planet because of the usual evolutionary processes?

https://localbitcoins.com/?ch=80k | BTC: 1LJvmd1iLi199eY7EVKtNQRW3LqZi8ZmmB
FirstAscent
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Activity: 812


View Profile
October 28, 2012, 03:58:52 AM
 #11

He used mathematical reasoning to show that consciousness is non-algorithmic and therefore cannot be programmed into any computer, regardless of technology - it's basically a paradox.

I think the right question to ask here is the one about the instinct of self-preservation. Philosophical materialists (like Dawkins et al) would argue that all other aspects of consciousness are deducible from that. The complexity of decision making in survival strategies would sooner or later require some fuzzy logic and may very well spark the very thing that we call consciousness. We also wouldn't be zombies as kindness and positive social interaction would prove to be beneficial survival strategies.

So, would a system complex enough develop such an "instinct" for self-preservation out of itself? Did such systems merely emerge on this planet because of the usual evolutionary processes?

Most everything you're saying here relates to the "Easy Problem". Nor is there any reason that philosophical zombies would be exempt from the need for effective fuzzy logic and the exhibition of kindness.

Two things:
- Consider the Hard Problem.
- Consider the concept of proto-consciousness.

Proto-consciousness goes a long way towards making the Hard Problem seem tractable. Everything else just doesn't even come close.
Pages: [1]
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Sponsored by , a Bitcoin-accepting VPN.
Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.19 | SMF © 2006-2009, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!