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 The Double-Aspect Theory of Consciousness

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Erik

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PostSubject: The Double-Aspect Theory of Consciousness    Sun Mar 08, 2015 9:26 am

In this thread, I will seek to outline the double-aspect theory of consciousness expounded by Arthur Schopenhauer and then upgraded by later philosophers, such as Friedrich Nietzsche and Peter Sjöstedt-H.

Here are my three premises that I will delineate:

1.) Consciousness is not identical, nor reducible to the physical brain.

2.) The physical universe is a mode of representation, not an objective reality independent of the mind.

3.) Reality consists of individual, primal forms of consciousness - all of which are competing for power ( panexperientialism ala ' will to power ' ).

Premise 1.)

Many within the scientific and philosophical communities, today, subscribe to the position that the physical brain caused consciousness to spring into existence, or that awareness ( consciousness/mind ) is identical to the brain.

The former position doesn't take into account the ' hard-problem ' of consciousness; how does non-conscious, physical material generate immaterial, subjective experience?

The latter, erroneously, conflates the mind with the brain. Yes, the mind and the brain are correlated, but correlation doesn't entail identity, nor causation. One could, easily, make an argument for Berkeley's subjective-idealism. As prior mentioned, correlation doesn't mean identity, nor causation per se.

Premise 2.)

The external world that we experience is a mode of representation, not an objective reality independent of our minds. The naive position that the external world exists just as we perceive it is called " direct-realism ". This position is so ingrained in most people, that even some, nay, many academics still hold to it; but any honest and educated individual realizes the folly of this position. The external world is a mode of representation correlated to our human minds. The color green, for example, that we perceive on the grass is not an inherent property of it; but rather a form of qualia. We project the greenness unto the grass, as it were.

Immanuel Kant ( Schopenhauer's greatest influence ), believed that even space and time were a priori projections of the mind, that they are parts of our human ' spectacles ', which allow experience to be possible.
Double-aspect theory proposes that the universe, the spatio-temporal world, is a mode of representation correlated to human minds. Other organisms will represent their ' worlds ' in unique, idiosyncratic ways.

Premise 3.)

Arthur Schopenhauer believed that the ultimate nature of reality ( the Will ) was a-causal, a-temporal, a-spatial --- non-dual; but Nietzsche departed from Sch. in two ways: he didn't believe that the Will was one or non-dual, but rather plural. And he didn't think that the nature of the wills were primarily centered around survival, but rather power, hence the ' will to power '.

I agree with Nietzsche that reality consists of individual, primal forms of wills to power ( energy with intent ). We can observe how plants seek to acquire power by extracting nutrients from the soil and energy from the sun, in order that they may grow, expand, become ( I.e., acquire power ). Even in the inorganic, we can see how matter strives for power, which we represent as gravity and gravitation.

Note that I don't believe that plants and inorganic matter are conscious in the same way that humans are ( self-reflective consciousness ). These lesser forms of will-to-power systems possess primitive forms of subjectivity. It would be better to think of them as energy with intent.

Conclusion


This amalgamation of pan-experientialism, the will-to-power, and double-aspect theory, I believe, solves the ' hard problem ' of consciousness, and  more plausibly accounts for the nature of reality.

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PostSubject: Re: The Double-Aspect Theory of Consciousness    Mon Mar 09, 2015 8:53 pm


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PostSubject: Re: The Double-Aspect Theory of Consciousness    Sun Mar 29, 2015 1:48 pm


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