[ExI] Mental Phenomena

Brent Allsop brent.allsop at gmail.com
Sun Jan 26 20:27:21 UTC 2020

Hi Ben,
Thanks for your extra work in our efforts to communicate.  We are obviously
failing miserably.
The fact that everyone in this field has such a difficult time
communicating, like this, is a huge problem with the "peer reviewed'
journal and book writing system of today.  All authors write a paper or
book from their own point of view, using their own unique terminology.  The
papers tend to only be about mistakes they believe exists in other papers
describing competing theories.  There is no motivation to ever write a
paper and say: "A agree", other than to "cite" the paper.  (Again, in in
many cases, citation are to criticize, nobody tracking any of this.)
Nobody ever checks to see if any of the arguments they are presenting
convert anyone to a different camp or anything like that.  So the same old
bad arguments get thrown arround in everyone bubbles (usually polarized
between religion and science), nobody ever noticing if anyone on any side,
agrees.  This gives everyone the false perception that nobody agrees on
anything.  Everyone believes their own theory is a minority position, even
when it is very popular.  Basically, zero progress has been made in this
field for hundreds of years.  I personally know some great
experimentalists.  When I ask them if they ever studied qualia, they often
say something like they spent several years trying to understand the
concept, but eventually just gave up, it is all such crap.

I was facing the same thing, I couldn't get anything form all the crap
literature.  I just wanted to know what, if any, theory was the most well
accepted theory, consensus wise, and all you can find is lots of papers
yelling with the same old arguments, about how everyone else is wrong and
they are right.

We're trying to find ways to cut through all that with Canonizer.com.
Instead of one person authoring a paper or book, everyone gets together to
collaborate on the best terminology to use to concisely describe their
current working hypothesis.  The disagreements everyone is focusing on are
almost always far less important than what the experts do agree on.
Canonizer's camp tree structure allows the important stuff that everyone
agrees on and trying to build and track consensus around ("Approachable via
Science <https://canonizer.com/topic/88-Approachable-Via-Science/2>" with
over 50 of the total 60 participants and "Representational Qualia Theory
<https://canonizer.com/topic/88-Representational-Qualia/6>" with 40 of the
50 approachable people).  The only disagreement which everyone is
publishing about are minor in comparison competing ideas about the nature
of qualia.  Canonizer.com let's people push these kinds of disagreements
out of the way of the important stuff the experts are building consensus
arround.  Notice that even Dennett's current "Predictive Bayesian Coding
theory" is now in a supporting sub camp position to "Representational
Qualia Theory <https://canonizer.com/topic/88-Representational-Qualia/6>"
Anywhere else you go to find out this kind of info is just ideological
polarized crap, saying that Dennett, representing the scientific side
disagrees with the religious fold.  This kind of false crap is exactly what
you everywhere except canonizer example being the wikipedia article on
qualia <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Qualia>.

So, back to the material at hand.  You said:

"*My question 'I've falsified the theory, wouldn't you say?*'"

Hopefully you can see below, where I did try to agree with this, and point
out that you had falsified the idea that glutamate = redness.  And I've
repeatedly tried to point out how that is missing the point, which you seem
so have completely missed.  The glutamate=redness is just a way overly
simplified description of an imaginary world where there are only 2 colors:
red and green - nothing else.  We are trying to communicate how one can be
non qualia blind (a difficult task in itself) in this type of simplified
world.  Once people understand qualia blindness in this simple world, they
can then apply the same theory to other theories more capably describing
everything we know about the physics of the brain, like your theory that
qualia are "patterns of information in neural networks".  To me, everything
you are saying about this sounds perfectly compatible with everything in RQT
<https://canonizer.com/topic/88-Representational-Qualia/6>.  Like all the
other sub camps, you are making yet more competing predictions about the
nature of qualia.   Would it help if from now on, in my discussions with
only you, I replace the word glutamate with "patterns of information in
neural networks" ? Of course, you would be the only one this would benefit,
which is why we try to canonizer things, to find the best terminology to

Also, you said: "Qualia are not elemental properties of anything",
indicating you maybe thinking we are talking about objective descriptions
of some new "elemental" physics or something.  In "Representational Qualia
Theory" we define "elemental qualities" to simply be different than
composite qualia.  When someone experiences redness, they also experience a
LOT of other computationally bound information.  Meaning (the color of a
strawberry), the word "red", blood.....)  Elemental redness is just a
constituent of such a composite redness experience.  Surely, whatever
redness is a quality of, it may not be elemental.  This would be true if
redness is a "pattern of information".  Such a pattern of redness could be
further broken down into the elements making up that patter.  The point
being that if you wanted to fully describe the subjective knowledge of the
strawberry, you don't need to descend down and describe all the patterns.
All you would need to describe is the elemental redness.  That would allow
you to reproduce such in another's mind, since you would know the specifics
of the "pattern" that was redness and how that might differ from a grenness
pattern.  In other words "elemental redness" is just the bottom level of
description required, to fully describe a composite subjective experience.

Here's where I tried to say the same thing, before:

On Tue, Jan 21, 2020 at 11:03 AM Brent Allsop <brent.allsop at gmail.com>

> Hi Ben,
> Yes, thanks for asking questions about my intentions instead of just
> dismissing me as an idiot.  I’ve answered this question multiple times on
> this list, but I guess you haven’t seen this yet so let me try again.
> There is evidence of a clear consensus around qualia as indicated in “Representational
> Qualia Theory <https://canonizer.com/topic/88-Representational-Qualia/6>”.
> The only disagreement is what is the nature of qualia, as you can see in
> the many competing sub camps.
> In order to communicate the general ideas contained in RQT
> <https://canonizer.com/topic/88-Representational-Qualia/6> about how to
> eff the ineffable, why it is qualia blind to only use one word “red” for
> all things red, and why the so called impossibly “hard mind body problem”
> is really just a color problem and all that (already a somewhat difficult
> task to communicate)  Of all the theories of qualia, we take the most
> straight forward, easiest to falsify “Molecular Materialism
> <https://canonizer.com/topic/88-Molecular-Materialism/36>” theory, and
> we go way beyond even that, for simplicity sake.  We imagine an imaginary
> world where there are only two colors red and green.  Not even any other
> shades of color – just red and green.  And in this overly simplistic world
> it is glutamate reacting in a synapse that has the elemental pixel quality
> of redness, and glycine that has the elemental quality of greenness.  All
> this, so we can say things like glutamate has a color property of white (it
> reflects white light) and it has a colorness quality of redness.  Our
> abstract descriptions of how glutamate behaves in a synapse is one and the
> same as what we directly experience as elemental redness.
> So, if someone thinks redness = glutamate has been falsified, just
> substitute some other set of physics in the brain that hasn’t’ yet been
> falsified.  Replace every occurrence of glutamate, above, with whatever
> that things is.
> If you think there is a more likely theory than glutamate = redness (it
> must be very falsifiable, as most competing theories of “molecular
> materialism, it isn’t clear how to falsify them)  I would be happy to
> substitute whatever you think could be a description of the necessary and
> sufficient set of physics that is a description of what we directly
> experience as redness.  And of course, it would be great if you would
> create a camp for what you think is most likely, so we can see how many
> other people agree with you, compared to competing theories.  You still
> haven’t fully falsified Molecular Materialism for me, so I’m still
> supporting that as my top working hypothesis choice.
> The problem is, everyone gets lost in the minor details everyone disagrees
> on, and focuses on that.  While completely missing what all the experts
> agree is important (that which is contained in RQT
> <https://canonizer.com/topic/88-Molecular-Materialism/36>.)  That is the
> power of Cononizer – the ability to push disagreements into lower level sub
> camps, out of the way of building consensus around what most experts agree
> is important:” There is no hard mind body problem, it’s just that nobody
> knows what color anything is.
> So, Ben, Please.  From here on out, whenever I say glutamate, please
> replace that word with a description of whatever physics you most likely
> think is a description of redness.

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