Advertisement

Informational Flow Implies Informational Pause

  • Marc Champagne
Chapter
Part of the Studies in the History of Philosophy of Mind book series (SHPM, volume 19)

Abstract

In the previous chapter, I tried to keep ordinary colour perception from being philosophically dismissed. In this chapter, I want to argue that countenancing such qualities at a fundamental level is more promising than waiting for those qualities to emerge at higher levels of complexity. Although complex patterns are crucial to the deployment of neuroscientific and psychological explanations, prescission allows us to artificially decompose those patterns into simple qualities which, owing to their radical isolation from all relations, elude all scientific scrutiny. I argue that, so long as humans have this ability to prescind, worries about phenomenal consciousness will resurface. I thus try to demystify our powers of prescission by examining the Game of Life setting. Philosophers of mind like Daniel Dennett have used this setting to explain intentional explanation, but I think it can also be used to explain how we arrive at the idea of qualia.

References

  1. Baars BJ (1997) In the theater of consciousness: the workspace of the mind. Oxford University Press, OxfordCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bailey AR (2005) What is it like to see a bat? Dretske on qualia. Disputatio 1(18):151–177Google Scholar
  3. Bains P (2006) The primacy of semiosis: an ontology of relations. University of Toronto Press, TorontoCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Block N (1978) Troubles with functionalism. In: Savage CW (ed) Minnesota studies in philosophy of science, vol 9. Minnesota University Press, Minneapolis, pp 261–325Google Scholar
  5. Block N (1995) Mental paint and mental latex. In: Villanueva E (ed) Philosophical issues, vol 7. Ridgeview, Atascadero, pp 19–49Google Scholar
  6. Brier S (2008) Cybersemiotics: why information is not enough. University of Toronto Press, TorontoGoogle Scholar
  7. Carnap R (2003) The logical structure of the world (trans: George RA). Open Court, ChicagoGoogle Scholar
  8. Chalmers DJ (1996) The conscious mind: in search of a fundamental theory. Oxford University Press, OxfordGoogle Scholar
  9. Chalmers DJ (2010) The character of consciousness. Oxford University Press, OxfordCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Chalmers DJ (2015) Panpsychism and panprotopsychism. In: Alter T, Nagasawa Y (eds) Consciousness in the physical world: essays on Russellian monism. Oxford University Press, Oxford, pp 246–276Google Scholar
  11. Champagne M (2011) Axiomatizing umwelt normativity. Sign Syst Stud 39(1):9–59Google Scholar
  12. Champagne M (2013) A necessary condition for proof of abiotic semiosis. Semiotica 197:283–287Google Scholar
  13. Champagne M (2015) A less simplistic metaphysics: Peirce’s layered theory of meaning as a layered theory of being. Sign Syst Stud 43(4):523–552Google Scholar
  14. Churchland PM (1981) Eliminative materialism and the propositional attitudes. J Philos 78(2):67–90Google Scholar
  15. Churchland PM (2011) Consciousness and the introspection of “qualitative simples”. Eidos 15:12–47Google Scholar
  16. Clark A (2013) Whatever next? Predictive brains, situated agents, and the future of cognitive science. Behav Brain Sci 36(3):181–253CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Coleman S (2015) Neuro-cosmology. In: Coates P, Coleman S (eds) Phenomenal qualities: sense, perception, and consciousness. Oxford University Press, Oxford, pp 66–102CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Davies PCW (1990) Why is the physical world so comprehensible? In: Zurek WH (ed) Complexity, entropy and the physics of information. Westview Press, Boulder, pp 61–70Google Scholar
  19. Deely JN (1994) The grand vision. Trans Charles S. Peirce Soc 30(2):371–400Google Scholar
  20. Deely JN (2001) Physiosemiosis in the semiotic spiral: a play of musement. Sign Syst Stud 29(1):27–48Google Scholar
  21. Deely JN (2003) The impact on philosophy of semiotics. St. Augustine’s Press, South BendGoogle Scholar
  22. Dennett DC (1987) The intentional stance. MIT Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  23. Dennett DC (1991a) Consciousness explained. Little, Brown and Company, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  24. Dennett DC (1991b) Real patterns. J Philos 88(1):27–51CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Dretske FI (1981) Knowledge and the flow of information. Center for the Study of Language and Information, ChicagoGoogle Scholar
  26. Dretske FI (1995) Naturalizing the mind. MIT Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  27. Eco U (1990) The limits of interpretation. Indiana University Press, BloomingtonGoogle Scholar
  28. Emmeche C, Hoffmeyer J, Kull K, Markoš A, Stjernfelt F (2008) The IASS roundtable on biosemiotics: a discussion with some founders of the field. Am J Semiot 24(1–3):1–21Google Scholar
  29. Goff P (2017) Consciousness and fundamental reality. Oxford University Press, OxfordCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Holman EL (2008) Panpsychism, physicalism, neutral monism and the Russellian theory of mind. J Conscious Stud 15(5):48–67Google Scholar
  31. Jackson F (1982) Epiphenomenal qualia. Philos Q 32(127):127–136CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Jaynes J (2000) The origin of consciousness in the breakdown of the bicameral mind. Mariner, BostonGoogle Scholar
  33. Kruse FE (1990) Nature and semiosis. Trans Charles S Peirce Soc 26(2):211–224Google Scholar
  34. Legg C (2008) The problem of the essential icon. Am Philos Q 45(3):207–232Google Scholar
  35. Lidov D (1999) Elements of semiotics. MacMillan, LondonGoogle Scholar
  36. Livingston PM (2013) Phenomenal concepts and the problem of acquaintance. J Conscious Stud 20(5–6):71–92Google Scholar
  37. Loar B (1997) Phenomenal states. In: Block N, Flanagan O, Güzeldere G (eds) The nature of consciousness: philosophical debates. MIT Press, Cambridge, pp 597–616Google Scholar
  38. Majeed R (2013) Pleading ignorance in response to experiential primitivism. Philos Stud 163(1):251–269CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Margolis E, Laurence S (1999) Concepts and cognitive science. In: Margolis E, Laurence S (eds) Concepts: core readings. MIT Press, Cambridge, pp 3–81Google Scholar
  40. McDermid D (2008) The varieties of pragmatism: truth, realism, and knowledge from James to Rorty. Continuum, LondonGoogle Scholar
  41. Nagel T (1979) Mortal questions. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  42. Nagel T (1986) The view from nowhere. Oxford University Press, OxfordGoogle Scholar
  43. Park JJ (2013) The hard problem of consciousness and the progressivism of scientific explanation. J Conscious Stud 20(9–10):90–110Google Scholar
  44. Peirce CS (1992) The essential Peirce: selected philosophical writings, vol 1. Indiana University Press, BloomingtonGoogle Scholar
  45. Peirce CS (1998) The essential Peirce: selected philosophical writings, vol 2. Indiana University Press, BloomingtonGoogle Scholar
  46. Pereboom D (2011) Consciousness and the prospects of physicalism. Oxford University Press, OxfordCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Peschard I (2010) Non-passivity of perceptual experience. Contemporary Pragmatism 7:149–164CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Popper KR, Eccles JC (1981) The self and its brain. Springer, BerlinGoogle Scholar
  49. Poundstone W (1985) The recursive universe: cosmic complexity and the limits of scientific knowledge. William Morrow, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  50. Prinz JJ (2007) Mental pointing: phenomenal knowledge without concepts. J Conscious Stud 14(9–10):184–211Google Scholar
  51. Psillos S (2009) Knowing the structure of nature: essays on realism and explanation. Palgrave Macmillan, HampshireCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Rosenberg G (2004) A place for consciousness: probing the deep structure of the natural world. Oxford University Press, New YorkCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Ross D (2000) Rainforest realism: a Dennettian theory of existence. In: Ross D, Brook A, Thompson D (eds) Dennett’s philosophy: a comprehensive assessment. MIT Press, Cambridge, pp 147–168Google Scholar
  54. Russell B (1950) Introduction to mathematical philosophy. George Allen and Unwin, LondonGoogle Scholar
  55. Russell B (1954) The analysis of matter. Dover, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  56. Russell B (1998) The philosophy of logical atomism. Open Court, ChicagoGoogle Scholar
  57. Santaella L (2009) Pervasive semiosis. Trans Charles S Peirce Soc 45(3):261–272Google Scholar
  58. Schlick M (1979) Philosophical papers, vol 2. Riedel, DordrechtGoogle Scholar
  59. Skrbina D (2005) Panpsychism in the west. MIT Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  60. Skrbina D (2006) Realistic panpsychism. In: Strawson G, Freeman A (eds) Consciousness and its place in nature: does physicalism entail panpsychism? Imprint Academic, Exeter, pp 151–157Google Scholar
  61. Strawson G (2006) Consciousness and its place in nature: does physicalism entail panpsychism? Imprint Academic, ExeterGoogle Scholar
  62. Thompson E (2007) Mind in life: biology, phenomenology, and the sciences of mind. Harvard University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  63. Weyl H (1963) Philosophy of mathematics and natural science. Atheneum, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  64. Wittgenstein L (2002) Tractatus logico-philosophicus (trans: Ogden CK, Ramsey FP). Routledge, LondonGoogle Scholar
  65. Worrall J (1989) Structural realism: the best of both worlds? Dialectica 43(1–2):99–124CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marc Champagne
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyTrent UniversityPeterboroughCanada

Personalised recommendations