[ExI] Meaningless Symbols.

Stathis Papaioannou stathisp at gmail.com
Sat Jan 16 02:42:27 UTC 2010

2010/1/16 Gordon Swobe <gts_2000 at yahoo.com>:

> I think that eventually neuroscience and the philosophy of mind will merge into one field -- that neuroscientists will come to see that they hold in their hands the answers to these questions of philosophy.

When neuroscientists make a working model of a brain and claim that,
since it behaves like a real brain it must also have the mind of a
real brain, there will be the doubters. The neuroscientists will stamp
their feet and point to their experimental results but the doubters
will still doubt, as there is no possible empirical fact that will
convince them. Therefore, it will by definition always remain a
philosophical question.

> It has already started if you look with open eyes: neuroscientists have produced antidepressant drugs that brighten mood, a quality of consciousness, and drugs that alleviate pain, another quality of consciousness, and so on and so on.

The drugs can do this only by affecting the behaviour of neurons. What
you claim is that it is possible to make a physical change to a neuron
which leaves its behaviour unchanged but changes or eliminates the
person's consciousness.

Stathis Papaioannou

More information about the extropy-chat mailing list