Mind Lectures 2 - MIND LECTURES 2 Consciousness Mental...

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MIND LECTURES 2
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Consciousness Mental States can be demarcated into two important classes: I Qualitative states – states that have a qualitative character, such as being in pain, seeing blue, hearing C#, feeling velvet. I Propositional attitudes – states that take a proposition as an object, such as believing that it will rain, hoping that your favorite team will win, supposing that Goldbach’s Conjecture is true. The demarcation is not exhaustive. Clearly emotions are a kind of mental state. Where exactly do emotions fall? Are they purely qualitative or they cognitive, like propositional
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Two concepts of consciousness Ned Block has drawn a distinction between two concepts of consciousness. I Phenomenal Consciousness : What it is like to be in a state – the phenomenal qualitative character of the state. How the state feels and is phenomenologically for a certain subject or class of subjects. I Access Consciousness : The fact that a state is available for a number of cognitive functions, such as reportability, control of action, deployment in reasoning. A state this is directly available for global control. Access consciousness is an information processing variant of phenomenal consciousness.
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Searle on Consciousness: Conscious states, with their subjective, first- person ontology, are real phenomena in the real world. We cannot do an eliminative reduction of consciousness, showing that it is just an illusion. Nor can we reduce consciousness to its neurobiological basis, because such a third- person reduction would leave out the first-person ontology of consciousness.
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Searle on Consciousness Conscious states are entirely caused by lower level neurobiological processes in the brain. Conscious states are thus causally reducible to neurobiological processes. Causally speaking they are not something over and above neurobiological processes.
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Searle on Consciousness Conscious states are realized in the brain as features of the brain system, and thus exist at a level higher than that of neurons and synapses. Individual neurons are not conscious, but portions of the brain system composed of neurons are conscious.
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Searle on Consciousness Because conscious states are real features of the real world, they function causally. My conscious thirst causes me to drink water.
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The distinction between the mental and the physical Physical systems do not have to exclude the possibility of having states which are qualitative and subjective. Nothing in an expanded notion of ‘physical’ rules out that subjective qualitative states are non- physical. Mental states maybe not be extended in space, but they are nevertheless located in space and episodic over time.
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Reduction Reexamined Causal reduction: A is causally reducible to B only if A has no causal powers over and above the causal powers of B. Ontological reduction: A is
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This note was uploaded on 09/08/2010 for the course PHIL 70C at San Jose State University .

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Mind Lectures 2 - MIND LECTURES 2 Consciousness Mental...

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