Re: My top-down strategy is now 100% complete.

From: Tennessee Leeuwenburg (
Date: Mon Mar 07 2005 - 22:09:27 MST

Hash: SHA1


Here is what I did earlier. I wasn't trying to say what constitutes a
mind, but looking at what it's like to make a decision.

I think what I describe there is a useful tool for understanding what
it's like to make a decision as a person in the world.

I saw immediate parallels between the inductive/deductive dichotomy
which you identified in your philosophy, and the Intuition/Formal
System dichotomy which I identify in mine.

Your description of "bridging" and "metaphor creation" seemed at first
quite similar to the "dialectic" which I describe as the process of
decision making, but I realised your system has several strengths that
mine lacks. (Not that our two ideas are doing exactly the same thing,
mind you). I present a short comparison :

Your system
~ * Is defined recursively, and facilitates analysis at any level of
~ * Talks about how the mind builds its ideas of the world
~ * Describes what it is to be a mind, by describing what it does
and how

My system
~ * Is defined at only one level (albeit a useful one)
~ * Takes knowledge of the world as an input, not a process.
(obviously it's a dynamic process - but I am talking about a
*particular* decision
~ * Has been attacked for not giving enough richness in terms of
describing emotion
~ * Describes the process of decision-making

I think both systems have their place. Here are some issues :

"It seems natural to equate the generation of metaphors with qualia."
I agree. However, "it seems" is not a very convincing argument.
Perhaps we can provide a better argument for why this is the case.
After all, could you not imagine a metaphor without qualia? Or is
having qualia the same thing as having a thought?

And then you say : "So I certainly didn?t mean that all metaphors are
connected to morals/values." You are talking here merely about
understanding things, but how do you see this relating to qualia? Do
all metaphors map 1:1 with qualia?

"At the highest level of course graining I have divided
the mind in two ? into a sub-system dealing with
morals/values and a sub-system dealing with reasoning
about inanimate objects."

This is the one thing which conflicts to some extent with my model. I
make a distinction between intuition and formal reasoning, but don't
see the use in separating between moral and physical. I think we
probably use the same kind of reasoning to proceed from our beliefs
about morals as we do to proceed from our beliefs about physical facts.

However, I strongly agree that our sense of "what we ought to do" can
be separated into two parts. The first part corresponds to having a
good understanding of cause and effect , and means how well we can
decide on how to cause a desired effect. The second corresponds to our
moral/value goals, and means how we form goals.

In terms of making a decision, I think both kinds of normative forces
play on us through the intuition and through formal systems. I have
made my fundamental dichotomy a functional one, whereas you have made
yours a qualitative one.

I would love to hear your comments on that Marc! Hopefully I am not
way off base understanding what you are saying, and hopefully I am
being sufficiently clear.

- -Tennessee
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