Download An Ontology of Consciousness by Ralph Ellis (auth.) PDF

By Ralph Ellis (auth.)

The item of this research is to discover a coherent theoretical method of 3 difficulties which seem to interrelate in advanced methods: (1) what's the ontological prestige of cognizance? (2) How can there be 'un­ conscious,' 'prereflective' or 'self-alienated' recognition? And (3) Is there a 'self' or 'ego' shaped via the interrelation of extra trouble-free states of cognizance? the incentive for combining the sort of range of adverse questions is that we frequently study extra through interrelations of difficulties than lets through viewing them simply in isola­ tion. the 3 questions posed the following have emerged as particularly prob­ lematic within the context of 20th century philosophy. 1. The query of the ontological prestige of awareness The query 'What is consciousness?' is without doubt one of the such a lot complicated in philosophy-so puzzling that many were stimulated to continue as if cognizance didn't exist. If William James was once talking rhetorically whilst he stated "Consciousness doesn't exist," 1 many behaviorists of the hot prior weren't. 2 James intended merely to indicate that awareness isn't an independently present soul-substance, alongside­ part actual ingredients. He didn't suggest that we don't quite 'have' recognition, and he didn't supply ultimate solution for the matter of the causal interrelations among recognition and the actual realm (e. g. , our bodies). Many fresh philosophers and psychologists, even though, attempt to continue as if those difficulties didn't exist.

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It remains true that the removal of the wood and substitution of some other medium-for example, air-would fail to alter significantly the pattern of activity which 'is' sound. The pattern could therefore exist without this or that particular material medium, though it is true that it needs some material medium. It may also be, then, that this type of identity statement, as applied to the relation between mind and brain, is correspondingly weak. It does not necessarily deny that the consciousness causes the brain activity, for example, which would be a form of epiphenomenalism which reverses the terms from the usual epiphenomenalism that would treat the physical events as the causal agents.

We shall see in section 2 of this chapter that there are strong reasons for rejecting interactionism, parallelism, epiphenomenalism and the 'pomological equivalence' approach. Interactionism cannot account for the necessary-and-sufficient conditions in the causal interrelations of mental and physiological events. Epiphenomenalism regards physiological processes as the cause of conscious events; analysis of the notion of directionality in the causal relation in section 3, however, will show that directionality as a general rule cannot be established in the relationship between consciousness and physiology.

She imagines she is not married and then imagines she is. Elusive spirals go on and on. 35 But, given any Jill who finds herself pretending to be married and pretending not to be, this analysis mayor may not apply. How is she to know 40 AN ONTOLOGY OF CONSCIOUSNESS whether Laing's account applies to her particular case? There are many other eidetic descriptions that might apply to the same factual situation, as far as the facts are known. For example, she may indeed want to be married to Jack although communication problems have led to the present state of affairs.

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