[ExI] Where is Consciousness located?

Brent Allsop brent.allsop at comcast.net
Sun Dec 23 02:46:31 UTC 2007

Stathis Papaioannou wrote:
> On 23/12/2007, Brent Allsop <brent.allsop at comcast.net> wrote:
>> As far as the evolution part goes, you've also made this mistaken
>> argument before also.  Do you keep archives?  Check arorund Nov 2005,
>> for one example of a bunch of us having this same conversation.  Myself,
>> and I believe others like Damien Broderick, explained why you are
>> wrong.  But of course, telling people to dig such information out of
>> conversation logs isn't of much use right?  And obviously people don't
>> just remember such, not to mention all the new people having to suffer
>> through all this yet again.
> I'm not sure what John's point about evolution was, but there is no
> reason for evolution to favour a conscious being over a philosophical
> zombie. This would imply that consciousness is a corollary of human
> level intelligence.
John has always claimed that if phenomenal properties are not 
objectively or abstractly detectable, then evolution could not select 
for them.  He then concludes that this is an argument that phenomenal 
properties do not exist.

If some process is more efficient at achieving some attribute that 
results in something being more survivable, then evolution will favor or 
develop that process over another.  While abstract representations, 
given increased complexity (it is much harder to lie, than to tell the 
truth), can behave in motivated zombie ways, acting like they are 
consciously motivated, the argument is that it is possible that 
phenomenal properties of nature could be used to accomplish the same 
intelligent representation and comprehension of knowledge and motivation 
much more easily and naturally, than other merely abstract, or whatever 
zombie processes.

Do you think this information should be canonized somehow so we won't 
have to explain it repeatedly?  In 2009, I hope we are way beyond 
repeating all this every few years as we have been stuck dong now for so 

Brent Allsop

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