Re: The Singularity and the quantum mind

From: Mitchell Porter (
Date: Sun Mar 04 2001 - 23:31:49 MST

--- Damien Broderick
<> wrote:
> At 09:16 PM 4/03/01 -0800, Mitch wrote:
> >I think that a far more
> >likely foundation is the ... philosophy of
> >"transcendental phenomenology"
> I assume you mean Husserl and his school/epigones?
> Or are you trying to go
> back to Kant and Hegel?

I mean Husserl, specifically the idea of a self
whose state of consciousness is a structure
constituted by relations like "givenness" and
"projection" and so on. There are cognitive
scientists who take Husserl's description of
consciousness seriously, but they want to be
natural scientists and therefore wish to reduce
or identify such relations to classical ones
(computational, dynamical,...). This I think
is a mistake, but it's necessitated by a natural
science in which the brain is nothing but an
aggregate of very many simple physical entities.
If you're going to have a self, it has to be
a virtual machine running on the brain, or a
collection of brain subsystems, or some other
composite entity. The interesting thing about
quantum theory is that it has a form of
compositeness (entanglement) quite different
from spatial or causal compositeness. To even
call it compositeness might be a mistake.

As for Kant and Hegel, I simply don't understand
them enough to have formed an opinion on their
relevance, although I think Kant's inventory of
elementary forms of judgment might be important.
Understanding Husserl (just a little bit) has
been work enough!

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