[ExI] Molecular Materialism
avant at sollegro.com
Sun Dec 29 04:23:17 UTC 2019
Molecular Materialism is actually an empirically testable theory of
qualia. We have empirically determined the colors that some different
species can see.
" COMMON ANIMALS AND THE COLORS THEY CAN SEE
ANIMAL THE COLORS THEY SEE RELATIVE TO HUMANS
SPIDERS (jumping spiders) ULTRAVIOLET AND GREEN Different
INSECTS (bees) ULTRAVIOLET, BLUE, YELLOW Different
CRUSTACEANS (crayfish) BLUE AND RED Less
CEPHALOPODS (octopi and squids) BLUE ONLY Less
FISH MOST SEE JUST TWO COLORS Less
AMPHIBIANS (frogs) MOST SEE SOME COLOR Less
REPTILES (snakes*) SOME COLOR AND INFRARED Different
BIRDS FIVE TO SEVEN COLORS More
MAMMALS (cats) TWO COLORS BUT WEAKLY Less
MAMMALS (dogs) TWO COLORS BUT WEAKLY Less
MAMMALS (rabbit) BLUE AND GREEN Less
MAMMALS (rats) ULTRAVIOLET, BLUE, GREEN Different
MAMMALS (squirrels) BLUES AND YELLOWS Less
MAMMALS (primates-apes and chimps) SAME AS HUMANS Same
MAMMALS (African monkeys) SAME AS HUMANS Same
MAMMALS (South American monkeys) CAN'T SEE RED WELL Less"
We can use this knowledge to test the hypothesis that each distinct
perceived colorness is an innate property of some molecule or another.
For example, if one hypothesized that a given molecule such as
glutamate had the red quale as a property, then glutamate should exist
in a higher proportion in the visual cortices of the animals that can
see red, e.g. crayfish, than the animals that cannot see red, e.g.
For an experiment one could then subject crayfish and squirrels to the
same bright red light or the same bright green light as a control and
then remove their brains to a blender and then test for relative
abundances of glutamate and other suspected "molecular quales" in the
resultant brain smoothies called "cell lysate" by purists. If one
molecule is in greater abundance in the crayfish brains exposed to red
light than in the squirrel brains or the control brains exposed to
green light, then you have a good candidate for the molecular quale of
redness and a much stronger case for the Molecular Materialism camp.
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