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Evidence that Consciousness Survives Bodily Death?

Discuss any topics related to metaphysics (the philosophical study of the principles of reality) or epistemology (the philosophical study of knowledge) in this forum.
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Re: Evidence that Consciousness Survives Bodily Death?

Post by Consul » January 2nd, 2019, 1:59 pm

RJG wrote:
January 1st, 2019, 8:46 pm
Tamminen wrote:I think dogs are not conscious of their experiences, but they are conscious of food and such things.
Not so. If dogs are conscious, then they can only be conscious of their 'experiences', or in this case, their visual and olfactory sensory reactions (which in turn are presumably caused by the 'real' food itself).
Tamminen is right. When a dog sees a cat, the only thing it's conscious of is the cat and not its visual cat-impressions.
RJG wrote:
January 1st, 2019, 8:46 pm
None of us, including dogs, are conscious of the 'causers' of our bodily reactions, we are instead only conscious of the bodily reactions (aka 'experiences') themselves. The 'cause' of our experiences can only be assumed.
You're wrong, especially because the subjective appearance of an object is not what is perceived. What is perceived is the object itself and not its appearance.

"When you see the object, you experience the object as causing your experience of it. This is even more obvious in the case of touch: when you run your hand along the top of the table, you experience the sensation in your hand as being caused by the pressure on the surface of the table.

In normal conscious perceptual experiences, you cannot have the perceptual experience without its seeming to you that what you are perceiving is the cause of your experience. Think of hearing a sudden loud noise or smelling an unpleasant smell or bumping into something in the dark or any number of other cases. In every case, when you have the subjective event in your subjective perceptual field, you experience it as being caused by the very thing you are perceiving, even though you cannot identify the thing, even though you do not know what exactly you are hearing, smelling, or bumping into. This is one the keys, and in a way the main key, to understanding the formation of the intentionality of perceptual experience."


(Searle, John R. Seeing Things As They Are: A Theory of Perception. New York: Oxford University Press, 2015. pp. 61+63)

RJG wrote:
January 1st, 2019, 8:46 pm
Tamminen wrote:By the way: how do you know you have a body?
All my experiences are bodily experiences (or that which I call body). Without a reactive experiential body, there would be no experiencing; no consciousness; and therefore no "me".
I agree that subjects are material objects (bodies or organisms), but it is not the case that all my sensations are bodily sensations, i.e. sensory appearances of my own body (or parts thereof). There is a difference between perceptual consciousness/awareness of one's own body and perceptual consciousness/awareness of other bodies (or things or events).
"We may philosophize well or ill, but we must philosophize." – Wilfrid Sellars

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Re: Evidence that Consciousness Survives Bodily Death?

Post by RJG » January 2nd, 2019, 4:43 pm

RJG wrote:"Perceptions" (experiential/subjective truths) can never be trusted to yield objective truths (true knowledge). If we wish to "know facts about the real world", then we must use deductive logic. We must use objective tools to yield objective truths.
Consul wrote:Of course, there are epistemological problems of (sensory) perception, but according to empiricism, which is "the 'default' or 'official' epistemology of science" (A. Rosenberg), all synthetic knowledge is (fundamentally/ultimately) based on/grounded in sensory perception (observation). And as the huge success of empirical science shows, sensory perception is a fallible yet reliable source of knowledge.
Not so. If the goal is to know objective truths (i.e. "know facts about the 'real' world"), then subjective tools (i.e. Science) are totally useless. Experientially derived truths (aka Science) are not trustworthy to yield 'true' (real; certain) knowledge. The truths of Science constantly evolve and change. Those truths reliant upon the uncertain nature of experiential objects, can never be certain, or known as truthful.

It is not possible to get 'objectivity' from 'subjectivity'.

Consul wrote:When a dog sees a cat, the only thing it's conscious of is the cat and not its visual cat-impressions.
How can a dog see a cat? --
  • 1- Don't light waves have to first bounce off the cat into the dog's eyes? So does the dog then see the light waves, or the cat?
    2- And then, don't the light waves then have to enter the eyeballs and react with the optic nerves? So does the dog then see the optic nerve reaction, or the cat?
    3- And then, don't the neurons then have to start flowing into the brain/memory? So does the dog then see the flowing neurons, or the cat?
    4- And then, don't the brain/memory interactions then create a mental impression of "cat"? So does the dog then see the mental impression, or the cat?

Consul wrote:When you see the object, you experience the object as causing your experience of it.
Firstly, we don't see 'objects' themselves, we only see the mental impressions of the supposed object. Secondly, experiencing 'causation' (a non-effect; non-experience) is logically impossible. And thirdly, if one assumes A 'causes' B, then it is not the 'cause' that they experience, but instead, it is the 'assumption' that they experience.

Consul wrote:This is even more obvious in the case of touch: when you run your hand along the top of the table, you experience the sensation in your hand as being caused by the pressure on the surface of the table.
Again, you only experienced the pressure sensation on your hand, and maybe also the visual experience of a table top. From this point you experience the 'assumption' of causation, not the actual causation itself.

Consul wrote:In normal conscious perceptual experiences, you cannot have the perceptual experience without its seeming to you that what you are perceiving is the cause of your experience.
Although it "seems" like we experience the cause, it is a logical impossibility. Not only can we not perceive past our own perceptions to perceive the 'cause' of our perceptions, but EVERYTHING we perceive is still just another damn 'perception'. "We can't ever take these damn glasses off!"

Consul wrote:I agree that subjects are material objects (bodies or organisms), but it is not the case that all my sensations are bodily sensations, i.e. sensory appearances of my own body (or parts thereof). There is a difference between perceptual consciousness/awareness of one's own body and perceptual consciousness/awareness of other bodies (or things or events).
We cannot know of these other things, without our own bodily sensations (via sensory organs) telling us so.

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Re: Evidence that Consciousness Survives Bodily Death?

Post by Tamminen » January 2nd, 2019, 5:44 pm

RJG wrote:
January 2nd, 2019, 4:43 pm
How can a dog see a cat? --
1- Don't light waves have to first bounce off the cat into the dog's eyes? So does the dog then see the light waves, or the cat?
Neither.
2- And then, don't the light waves then have to enter the eyeballs and react with the optic nerves? So does the dog then see the optic nerve reaction, or the cat?
Neither.
3- And then, don't the neurons then have to start flowing into the brain/memory? So does the dog then see the flowing neurons, or the cat?
Neither.
4- And then, don't the brain/memory interactions then create a mental impression of "cat"? So does the dog then see the mental impression, or the cat?
The cat.

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Re: Evidence that Consciousness Survives Bodily Death?

Post by Consul » January 2nd, 2019, 8:41 pm

RJG wrote:
January 2nd, 2019, 4:43 pm
Not so. If the goal is to know objective truths (i.e. "know facts about the 'real' world"), then subjective tools (i.e. Science) are totally useless. Experientially derived truths (aka Science) are not trustworthy to yield 'true' (real; certain) knowledge. The truths of Science constantly evolve and change. Those truths reliant upon the uncertain nature of experiential objects, can never be certain, or known as truthful.
It is not possible to get 'objectivity' from 'subjectivity'.
Truth is always objective, since subjective truth ("truth-for-me") is nothing but belief.

It is very well possible to get epistemological objectivity from ontological subjectivity. Empirical science has given us a large body of experienced-based knowledge that won't change and continues to grow.
RJG wrote:
January 2nd, 2019, 4:43 pm
Consul wrote:When a dog sees a cat, the only thing it's conscious of is the cat and not its visual cat-impressions.
How can a dog see a cat? --
  • 1- Don't light waves have to first bounce off the cat into the dog's eyes? So does the dog then see the light waves, or the cat?
    2- And then, don't the light waves then have to enter the eyeballs and react with the optic nerves? So does the dog then see the optic nerve reaction, or the cat?
    3- And then, don't the neurons then have to start flowing into the brain/memory? So does the dog then see the flowing neurons, or the cat?
    4- And then, don't the brain/memory interactions then create a mental impression of "cat"? So does the dog then see the mental impression, or the cat?
That's an unsound argument against (direct) perceptual realism:

"The first step made by the skeptical philosopher is to press the question: What is it, strictly speaking, that you perceive when you look at a tree? The answer is that you do not perceive an independently existing material object; rather, you perceive your own perception, your own conscious experience.

The commonsense view that we actually see such things as trees and houses is supposed to be easy to refute. The two most famous refutations are the argument from science and the argument from illusion. Because of the prestige of the natural sciences, the argument from science has been the more appealing in the twentieth century. The argument goes as follows:

If you consider scientifically what happens when you see a tree, here is what you find: Photons are reflected off the surface of the tree, they attack the photoreceptor cells in the retina, and cause a series of neuron firings that go through the live layers of cells in the retina, through the lateral geniculate nucleus, and back to the visual cortex; eventually this series of neuron firings causes a visual experience somewhere deep in the brain. All that we see, literally, directly, is the visual experience in our brains. This is variously called a 'sense datum,' a 'percept,' or, more recently, 'a symbolic description,' but the basic idea is that perceivers don't actually see the real world.

This argument seems to me fallacious. From the fact that I can give a causal account of how it comes about that I see the real world, it doesn‘t follow that I don’t see the real world. It is, indeed, a variant of the genetic fallacy. The fact that I can give a causal account of why I believe that two plus two equals four (I was conditioned by Miss Masters, my first-grade teacher) does not show that two plus two does not equal four. And the fact that I can give a causal account of how it comes about that I see the tree (light photons strike my retina and set up a series of neuron firings that eventually cause a visual experience) does not show that I don't see the tree. There is no inconsistency between asserting, on the one hand, 'I directly perceive the tree,' and asserting, on the other, 'There is a sequence of physical and neurobiological events that eventually produce in me the experience I describe as 'seeing the tree'.'"


(Searle, John R. Mind, Language and Society: Philosophy in the Real World. New York: Basic Books, 1999. pp. 28-9)
RJG wrote:
January 2nd, 2019, 4:43 pm
Consul wrote:When you see the object, you experience the object as causing your experience of it.
Firstly, we don't see 'objects' themselves, we only see the mental impressions of the supposed object.
No, we don't, simply because visual impressions or appearances are not visible themselves. You have them but you don't see them, since your having them is your seeing of something else (different from impressions/appearances). (Nonhallucinatory) experiencings of impressions/appearances are perceivings of things different from their impressions/appearances, and you don't perceive your perceivings of things but the things.

"The subjective visual field is ontologically private, a first-person set of experiences that go on entirely in the head.

In the objective visual field, everything is seen or can be seen; in the subjective visual field, nothing is seen nor can be seen.

My objective visual field is defined as the set of objects and states of affairs that are visible from my point of view under these conditions. My subjective visual field, on the other hand, is ontologically subjective, and it exists entirely in my brain. Thoe most important thing to re-emphasize is that in the subjective visual field, nothing is seen. This is not because the entities in the subjective visual field are invisible, but rather because their existence is the seeing of objects in the objective visual field. One thing you cannot see when you see anything is your seeing of that thing. And this holds whether or not the case is a good case or a bad case, whether it is veridical or hallucinatory, because in the hallucinatory case you do not see anything. And, in particular, you do not see the hallucinatory seeing. To think otherwise, to think that the entities in the subjective visual field are themselves seen, is to commit the Bad Argument. It is, as I have argued earlier, the disaster from which a large number of the disasters of Western philosophy over the past four centuries result.

I actually believe that if this point had been appreciated, not just about vision but about perception in general, from the seventeenth century on, the entire history of Western philosophy would have been different. Many truly appalling mistakes—from Descartes' Representative Theory of Perception all the way through to Kant's Transcendental Idealism and beyond—would have been avoided if everybody understood you cannot see or otherwise perceive anything in the subjective perceptual field."


(Searle, John R. Seeing Things As They Are: A Theory of Perception. New York: Oxford University Press, 2015. pp. 106-7)
"We may philosophize well or ill, but we must philosophize." – Wilfrid Sellars

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Re: Evidence that Consciousness Survives Bodily Death?

Post by Consul » January 2nd, 2019, 9:31 pm

Sensations are the experiential content of perception and not its intentional or perceptual object. The content is the perceptually transparent medium through which the object is perceived. It's not an impenetrable barrier preventing us from perceiving "things in themselves".

"[W]e have to do with reality when something presents itself as it actually and authentically is, be it a real truth or a real fact. In consequence, the fundamental distinction is not between the appearances available in our experience and that which is inaccessibly external to it, but rather between that which is correct within our experience and that which is somehow incorrect or misleading. lt would thus be wrongheaded to think of reality as a distinct sort of being different from 'the phenomenal realm' of what people take to be so. The crux is not the contrast between what is and what is thought to be, but rather between what is thought correctly and what is thought incorrectly and imperfectly.

In this context of consideration, reality just exactly is, and is nothing but, the condition of things that people purport when they avoid making mistakes and achieve the adaequatio ad rem that the medievals saw as the hallmark of truth. Properly conceived, reality is by its very nature accessible to inquiry, albeit to an inquiry which in practice will often get matters wrong. Reality, that is to say, is not something inherently extra-experiential: a mysterious something outside our cognitive reach. Instead, it encompasses that sector of experience which involves the true facts of the matter. After all, there is no reason why things cannot be what they appear in various respects, and in these respects appear as they actually are. Save in the world of the paranoid, things can be as they appear to be.

But of course they need not be so. As the proverb says, appearances can be deceiving. Our clock loses five minutes a day. Nevertheless on two occasions of the day it will be right on time. But if this circumstance somehow blinds us to this clock's flaws, we will be much deceived.

In distinguishing reality from mere appearance, what is fundamentally at issue is thus not an ontological distinction of different realms of being or thing-kinds, but an epistemological distinction between a correct and an incorrect view of things. Properly understood, the operative contrast is thus not that between reality and the phenomenon but between reality (veridical and authentic phenomena included) and what is misleading or incorrect. For reality can make its appearance in different guises—sometimes correctly and sometimes not. Appearance is not something different in kind and nature from reality, it is how reality presents itself. And reality is not by nature something different from appearance: it sometimes—and one would hope often—actually is what it appears to be."

(pp. 5-6)

"Regrettably, the contrast between appearance and reality is often identified—and thereby confused—with that between reality on the one side and mistaken or misleading appearance on the other. And this conflation will, effectively by definition, erect a Chinese Wall between reality and appearance. And this, rather paranoid, view of the matter must be put aside from the outset. To reemphasize: the philosophically significant contrast is not that between the real and the apparent as such, but rather that between the real and the merely apparent."
(p. 12)

"'Appearance' as philosophers use the term encompasses not just how things manifest themselves in sensory observation but the much broader range of how we take matters to stand—how we accept them to be not just in sense-observation but in conceptual thought as well. On this basis it would be gravely fallacious to take the step—as is often done—to map the real/unreal distinction and the real/apparent distinction. For this mixes the sheep and the goats in heaping vertical appearance together with mere (i.e., non-vertical) appearance, thereby subscribing to the paranoid delusion that things are never what they seem to be.

Reality is not a distinct realm of being standing apart and separate from the manifold of what we know in the realm of appearance. Those 'appearances' will—insofar as correct—be appearances of reality that represent features thereof. And, accordingly, the contrast between Reality and Appearance is not one carried out in the ontological order of different sorts of things. The realm of appearance is homogeneous with that of reality insofar as those appearances are correct.

The fact of it is that things sometimes—perhaps even frequently—are substantially as they appear to be. Reality and its appearance just are not two separate realms: there is nothing to prevent matters actually being as they are perceived and/or thought to be.

Appearance can in principle be something self-contained and self-sufficient: when appearing there is there need not be something that appears. When it appears to one that there is a pink elephant in your corner there need not be a something in that corner which appears as an elephant to me. Appearances may not only be deceiving, they may also be illusionary. In the sphere of appearance things can go seriously awry. And yet while matters can go wrong here, they need not do so. Things can indeed be as they appear. Total paranoia is clearly unwarranted. There is no reason that is, why appearance and reality cannot agree in this or that detail."

(pp. 14-5)

(Rescher, Nicholas. Reality and Its Appearance. New York: Continuum, 2010.)
"We may philosophize well or ill, but we must philosophize." – Wilfrid Sellars

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Re: Evidence that Consciousness Survives Bodily Death?

Post by BigBango » January 3rd, 2019, 1:05 am

I think Consul wins this argument with RJG hands down.

To add to this drubbing is the very scientific analysis of Michael Polanyi in his work "Personal Knowledge Towards a Post-Critical Philosophy"

In his book he introduces us to a new metaphysic. In his metaphysic he does see the "object" of our senses as directly perceived through the indirect support of our sense perceptions. A person that is blind and uses his cane to feel out his world is not primarily conscious of the taps of his cane. He is conscious of what those taps reveal about the real world he is in.

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Re: Evidence that Consciousness Survives Bodily Death?

Post by RJG » January 3rd, 2019, 8:37 am

Searle (via Consul) wrote:"From the fact that I can give a causal account of how it comes about that I see the real world, it doesn‘t follow that I don’t see the real world."]
This is bad logic (just kicks the can down the road). A causal account does not help. If I am privy 'only' to item D (the mental impression) at the end of a causal chain, then item A, B, and C can only be 'assumed' to exist. If one is privy only to D, then any causal account can only be 'assumed' as well as the existence of A>B, B>C, and finally C as the cause of D.

Searle (via Consul) wrote:It is, indeed, a variant of the genetic fallacy. The fact that I can give a causal account of why I believe that two plus two equals four (I was conditioned by Miss Masters, my first-grade teacher) does not show that two plus two does not equal four.
This seems to be a bit disingenuous. Math/logic are not a product of causal understanding. Perceptions (subjective; a posteriori truths) are not on par with the truths of math/logic (objective; a priori truths).Two plus two = four is still valid regardless of our understandings of the names (of the terms) that we are taught. If we name/call "two", a "five" or "six", the math is still valid, regardless of what we are taught are the names of the terms. -- For a rose by any other name is still a rose (would smell as sweet). Trying to equate subjectivity as objectivity is disingenuous.

Searle (via Consul) wrote:And the fact that I can give a causal account of how it comes about that I see the tree (light photons strike my retina and set up a series of neuron firings that eventually cause a visual experience) does not show that I don't see the tree.
Again, this 'assumes' that this particular causal account is truly responsible for the final mental impression. Since you can only see (have access to) the 'final' mental impression, you therefore can only speculate/guess on the source/identities of the cause(s)/causal chain. The true source and causes (which cannot be known!) may in all actuality be a dream/delusion/hallucination/illusion/etc. and not be a 'real' tree at all. Claiming to see a real tree as opposed to a hallucinated tree is doing so without any basis at all.

Searle (via Consul) wrote:"There is no inconsistency between asserting, on the one hand, 'I directly perceive the tree,' and asserting, on the other, 'There is [hopefully, maybe, assume-ably] a sequence of physical and neurobiological events that eventually produce in me the experience I describe as 'seeing the tree' [or maybe I am just hallucinating this damn tree, for I have no way of knowing one way or the other if this damn tree is 'real', for all I really know is that I want to sell books to stupid/gullible people, and get rich!]
If Searle were only truthful, then he would have included the missing text above (within the "[ ]"), which then would have exposed the disingenuous of his first sentence. Searle has NO WAY of knowing the source of his mental impression. He can only GUESS that it comes from a particular causal chain. Claiming there is no inconsistency is being dishonest/deceiving.

Searle's "con game" is akin to making the argument that the ghost I perceive is 'real', because there is a father ghost and a mother ghost that birthed and caused the existence of the ghost that I perceive.

Another simpler variation of Searle's con game, is how we sometimes reply to our kid's never ending questions. For example, when asked "where did God come from?", we may reply, "oh silly you, God comes from his parents". As this answer seemingly provides the kid with the (temporary/momentary) satisfaction of an answer, while providing us parents with a moment of relief/break from the never ending questions.

Searle is trying to pull a fast one over us gullible beings with his illogic. Run from his words!

BigBango wrote:I think Consul wins this argument with RJG hands down.
I think Consul has been scammed/conned by Searle.

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Re: Evidence that Consciousness Survives Bodily Death?

Post by Consul » January 3rd, 2019, 11:23 am

RJG wrote:
January 3rd, 2019, 8:37 am
Searle is trying to pull a fast one over us gullible beings with his illogic. Run from his words!
No, he's absolutely right. The causal argument against direct perceptual realism is actually unsound, because it fails to show that the (direct) objects of perception are always the subjective end-products of the causal processes involved, that "you can only see (have access to) the 'final' mental impression." Note that this point primarily concerns the ontology of (sensory) perception, i.e. its nature, and not its epistemology, i.e. its status as a source of knowledge of external reality. Direct perceptual realism doesn't deny the occurrence of illusions and hallucinations; it just denies that the (direct) objects of perception are subjective mental items (sensations, sensa, sense-data/-impressions). No matter whether a perceptual experience is veridical, illusory, or hallucinatory, the sensations involved are never the (direct) objects of perception. You never see your visual impressions but the things whose impressions they are; and in the case of veridical or illusory perception there is something whose impressions they are, while in the case of hallucination there is nothing whose impressions they are. So to hallucinate is not to perceive anything; it's just to experience something, viz. some sensation, which is not perceived.
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Re: Evidence that Consciousness Survives Bodily Death?

Post by Consul » January 3rd, 2019, 11:29 am

If it were true that "you can only see (have access to) the 'final' mental impression," there would be no sensory, external/outer perception at all but only nonsensory, internal/inner perception = introspection. This would result in subjective idealism and autistic self-absorption.
"We may philosophize well or ill, but we must philosophize." – Wilfrid Sellars

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Re: Evidence that Consciousness Survives Bodily Death?

Post by Belindi » January 3rd, 2019, 12:44 pm

Consul wrote:
January 3rd, 2019, 11:29 am
If it were true that "you can only see (have access to) the 'final' mental impression," there would be no sensory, external/outer perception at all but only nonsensory, internal/inner perception = introspection. This would result in subjective idealism and autistic self-absorption.
When information from the environment is replaced by information from memory at such time as the individual is awake they experience hallucinations, and if those are accompanied by paranoia are frightening.

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Re: Evidence that Consciousness Survives Bodily Death?

Post by RJG » January 3rd, 2019, 1:10 pm

Consul wrote:No matter whether a perceptual experience is veridical, illusory, or hallucinatory, the sensations involved are never the (direct) objects of perception. You never see your visual impressions but the things whose impressions they are; and in the case of veridical or illusory perception there is something whose impressions they are, while in the case of hallucination there is nothing whose impressions they are. So to hallucinate is not to perceive anything; it's just to experience something, viz. some sensation, which is not perceived.
Firstly, it is irrelevant whether the "final mental impression" was caused from perceiving or non-perceiving (or from X, Y, or Z). The "final mental impression" is the only one that we get to see/experience (i.e. have access to)!

Secondly, the 'causes' of the this "final mental impression" can only be 'assumed' (speculated/guessed at) as we have NO access to the cause (or causal chain) that resulted in our "final mental impression".

Thirdly, for us to claim that our "final mental impression" was caused by (and matches) a 'real' object out there, is to do so without any basis whatsoever. Any such claim can only be via "blind faith".

Consul wrote:If it were true that "you can only see (have access to) the 'final' mental impression," there would be no sensory, external/outer perception at all but only nonsensory, internal/inner perception = introspection.
It is not that there would be none, it is that there is none we have (conscious/mental) access to. We are not privy to the painting (creating/making), but only to the final picture (the 'final mental impression') itself. To claim the picture was painted by X and not by Y is to do so without any basis whatsoever, and is via pure "blind faith" only.

Consul wrote:This would result in subjective idealism and autistic self-absorption.
Not so. But even if it were so, I take it from the context of your words here, that it seems that you would reject this out-right (and cast stones at it) because of it's "awfulness" (ugliness/unpalatable-ness), ...true?

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Re: Evidence that Consciousness Survives Bodily Death?

Post by Felix » January 5th, 2019, 3:40 pm

RJG: Math/logic are not a product of causal understanding.
Sure they are, they are predicated on the observation and interpretation of sensory data.
RJ: Experientially derived truths (aka Science) are not trustworthy to yield 'true' (real; certain) knowledge.
Then neither are math/logic since they too are the fruit of subjective experience.
"We do not see things as they are; we see things as we are." - Anaïs Nin

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Re: Evidence that Consciousness Survives Bodily Death?

Post by BigBango » January 5th, 2019, 6:48 pm

RJG: Your analysis of the role of our sense impressions is flawed in very significant ways. Your first mistake is to imagine the "self" that experiences to be some point that is separate from its sensory experience. What that does is make our sensory data seem to be external to our "self". The obvious conclusion being "Berkley's Mistake" that we have no direct experience of reality but rather are "victims" of what our senses tell us.

Michael Polanyi rebuts that view definitively in his book "Personal Knowledge" On page 55 he identifies two kinds of awareness.

"When we use a hammer to drive in a nail, we attend to both nail and hammer, but in a different way.We watch the effect of our strokes on the nail and try to wield the hammer so as to hit the nail most effectively. When we bring down the hammer we do not feel that its handle has struck our palm but that its head has struck the nail. Yet in a sense we are certainly alert to the feelings in our palm and the fingers that hold the hammer. They guide us in handling it effectively, and the degree of attention that we give to the nail is given to the same extent but in a different way to these feelings. The difference may be stated by saying that the later are not like the nail, objects of our attention, but instruments of it. They are not watched in themselves; we watch something else while keeping intensely aware of them. I have a subsidiary awareness of the feeling in the palm of my hand which is merged into my final awareness of my driving in the nail."

Our experiencing self is not separate from our senses but our senses are an integral part of our experiencing self.

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Re: Evidence that Consciousness Survives Bodily Death?

Post by Felix » January 6th, 2019, 1:54 pm

"Our experiencing self is not separate from our senses but our senses are an integral part of our experiencing self."

What about extrasensory perception? - samadhi, etc.
"We do not see things as they are; we see things as we are." - Anaïs Nin

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RJG
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Re: Evidence that Consciousness Survives Bodily Death?

Post by RJG » January 6th, 2019, 2:54 pm

RJG wrote:Math/logic are not a product of causal understanding.
Felix wrote:Sure they are, they are predicated on the observation and interpretation of sensory data.
Not so. The truths of Math/Logic do not rely on "subjective comprehension". '1+1=2' is true, regardless of it being experientially detected.

RJG wrote:Experientially derived truths (aka Science) are not trustworthy to yield 'true' (real; certain) knowledge.
Felix wrote:Then neither are math/logic since they too are the fruit of subjective experience
Not so. Again, the truths of Math/Logic are not 'derived' from subjective means, ...they are only 'known' from subjective means.
  • The truths of Science are man-made (a posteriori) truths.
    The truths of Math/Logic are given-to-man (a priori) truths.

    The truths of Science constantly evolve and change.
    The truths of Math/Logic never change.

    The truths of Science are fallible.
    The truths of Math/Logic are not fallible.
Subjective (experiential) truths are not trustworthy to derive objective truths. -- We can't get 'objectivity' from 'subjectivity'!

BigBango wrote:Your analysis of the role of our sense impressions is flawed in very significant ways. Your first mistake is to imagine the "self" that experiences to be some point that is separate from its sensory experience.
Not so. Firstly it seems you have misinterpreted my words somewhere. Maybe you can quote my actual words?

Secondly, "self" seems to be a bit misleading, as it seemingly implies something more than just "experiencer".

Thirdly, there is no "self" (i.e. "experiencer") "separate" from it's experience. Without some-'thing' experiencing, there can be no experience. The physical body is the 'thing'; the experiencer of the (bodily) reactions/experiences.

BigBango wrote:The obvious conclusion being "Berkley's Mistake" that we have no direct experience of reality but rather are "victims" of what our senses tell us.
Berkeley is correct in the sense that all we can only ever experience, are just 'experiences' (mental impressions; "ideas"). Berkeley's error or "mistake" is in not realizing that all experiences are 'bodily' experiences. Without some-'thing' experiencing (reacting), there can be no experience (reaction) to tell us ('experiencers') of anything!

Berkeley commits the logical fallacy of appealing-to-ignorance to claim 'subjective idealism'. For the absence of evidence (material substance) is not evidence of absence (of no material substance). Just because we can't directly experience real objects does not mean real objects don't exist (when not experienced).

BigBango wrote:Our experiencing self is not separate from our senses but our senses are an integral part of our experiencing self.
I agree, but with the stipulation that our experiences include more than just the 'senses' (sensations). Experiences also include thoughts, feelings, and urges. The "experiencing self" (aka "experiencer") experiences all of these.

BigBango wrote:Michael Polanyi rebuts that view definitively in his book "Personal Knowledge" On page 55 he identifies two kinds of awareness.
Apples and Oranges are still just fruit. Both "kinds of awareness" are still just experiences, ...experienced by the experiencer.

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