Dictionary of Arguments

Philosophical and Scientific Issues in Dispute

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Disputed term/author/ism Author
Aspects Chalmers I 130
Aspects/Consciousness/Physical/Psychological/Chalmers: Some people object, consciousness could simply be a different aspect of the physical, as the evening star and morning star are aspects of the Venus. ChalmersVs: we must ask, is the phenomenal aspect contained in the physical? If so, we have a kind of materialism that we have already disproved because of the lack of logical supervenience. If not, then the phenomenal aspect provides merely contingent facts beyond the physical, and this leads to a further kind of property dualism.
I 288
Aspects/Chalmers: a principle of the two aspects of consciousness (phenomenal/physical) does not yet secure by itself that the structure of the psychological awareness is projected onto the conscious experience. Solution: we must show that the physical information space (> information/Chalmers) is a space to which the two-aspect principle applies.
In any case, the two-aspect principle is compatible with the principle of organizational invariance (> invariance principle) because a system realizes an information space by virtue of its functional organization.

Cha I
D. Chalmers
The Conscious Mind Oxford New York 1996

Cha II
D. Chalmers
Constructing the World Oxford 2014

Functionalism Chalmers I 15
Functionalism/Lewis/Armstrong/Chalmers: Lewis and Armstrong tried to explain all mental concepts, not only some. ChalmersVsLewis/ChalmersVsArmstrong: both authors made the same mistake like Descartes in assimilating the psychological to the phenomenal (see ChalmersVsDescartes).
E.g. When we wonder whether somebody is having a colour experience, we are not wondering whether they are receiving environmental stimulation and processing it in a certain way. It is a conceptually coherent possibility that something could be playing the causal role without there being an associated experience.
I 15
Functionalism/Consciousness/ChalmersVsFunctionalism/ChalmersVsArmstrong/ChalmersVsLewis/Chalmers: There is no mystery about whether any state plays a causal role, at most there are a few technical explanatory problems. Why there is a phenomenological quality of consciousness involved is a completely different question. Functionalism/Chalmers: he denies that there are two different questions. ((s) Also: ChalmersVsDennett).
I 231
Functionalism/Consciousness/Chalmers: two variants: Functionalism of the 2nd level: Among these, Rosenthal's approach of thoughts of the second level about conscious experiences and Lycan's (1995) (1) approach about perceptions of the second level. These theories give good explanations for introspection.
Functionalism of the 1st level : thesis: only cognitive states of the 1st level are used. Such theories are better in the explanation of conscious experiences.
Since, however, not all cognitive states correspond to conscious experiences, one still needs a distinguishing feature for them.
Solution/Chalmers: my criterion for this is the accessibility to global control.
I 232
Kirk: (1994) (2): Thesis: "directly active" information is what is needed. Dretske: (1995) (3): Thesis: Experience is information that is represented for a system.
Tye: (1995) (4): Thesis: Information must be "balanced" for purposes of cognitive processing.
I 250
Functionalism/VsFunctionalism/Chalmers: the authors who argue with inverted Qualia or lacking Qualia present the logical possibility of counter-arguments. This is sufficient in the case of a strong functionalism. The invariance principle (from which it follows that conscious experiences are possible in a system with identical biochemical organization) is a weaker functionalism. Here the merely logical possibility of counter examples is not sufficient to refute. Instead, we need a natural possibility of missing or inverted Qualia.
Solution: to consider natural possibility, we will accept fading or "dancing" Qualia.
I 275
Functionalism/Chalmers: the arguments in relation to a lacking, inverted and dancing Qualia do not support a strong, but the non-reductive functionalism I represent. Thesis: functional organization is, with natural necessity, sufficient for conscious experiences. This is a strong conclusion that strengthens the chances for > artificial intelligence. See also Strong Artificial Intelligence/Chalmers.

1. W. G. Lycan, A limited defense of phenomenal information. In: T. Metzingwr (ed), Conscious Experience, Paderborn 1995.
2. R. Kirk, Raw Feeling: A Philosophical Account of the Essence of Consciousness. Oxford 1994.
3. F. Dretske, Naturalizing the Mind, Cambridge 1995
4. M. Tye, Ten Problems of Consciousness, Cambridge 1995.

Cha I
D. Chalmers
The Conscious Mind Oxford New York 1996

Cha II
D. Chalmers
Constructing the World Oxford 2014

Inverted Spectra Chalmers I 99
Inverted Spectra/Consciousness/Chalmers: in order to demonstrate the lack of explainability of our consciousness, it suffices to show the logical possibility of a physical world with our identical world where facts about our conscious experience differ from those in our world. This is about positive facts, not about a lack of facts. ---
I 100
Someone who lives in my world might experience something as blue that I perceive as red. Of course, he would call it "red" just like me. The rest of its color perception would be arranged so that no differences could be noticed. Explanation: The simplest explanation would be that two of the axes of our three-dimensional color space are interchanged, the red-green axis and the yellow-blue axis. (An enlightening discussion of the human color space can be found in Hardin, 1988(1)). This is not only conceptually consistent and it does not appear to be excluded from neurophysiology either.
HarrisonVsInverted spectra/HardinVsInverted Spectra/Chalmers: (Harrison 1973(2), Hardin 1987(3)): Thesis:
The human color space is asymmetric so that such a reversal is not possible. For example, warm/cold colors associated with different functional roles ("positive", "negative").
1. Nevertheless, nothing is conceptually contradictory in inverted spectra. 2. Instead of an inversion of red and blue, one could assume an inversion of only slightly different color hues (Levine 1991)(4).
I 101
There is also no reason why an inversion of the spectrum needs to use only natural colors. 3. (Shoemaker, 1982)(5): Even though our color space is asymmetric, there is no reason to believe that there might be creatures with a symmetric color space that are physically identical to us.
Conceivability/Reductive explanation/Chalmers: if such assumptions are conceivable, this has an impact on the question of the possibility of reductive explanations.
Consciousness: both the conceivability of zombies as well as the one of inverted spectra show that consciousness does not logically supervene on physical facts. At most the existence of conscious experience could be explained reductively, but not the specific character of our experience.
I 263
Inverted Spectra/Chalmers: we must exclude the possibility of inverted spectra for functionally isomorphically structured systems. Inverted Qualia come first in John Locke.
I 264
VsChalmers: even materialists argue that the nature of experiences is based on the physiological nature, that is to say, in the case of differently constructed systems (for example, machines). Inverted Spectra/Schlick (1932)(6): they cannot be ascertained verificationistically. Therefore, there can be no real difference.
ChalmersVsSchlick: this is not sufficient to draw the conclusion that there is no fact here in regard to conscious experiences, namely, because the nature of Qualia is conceptually not linked to behavior. ((s) > nonfactualism).
I 265
Invariance Principle/Chalmers: the principle is not shaken by the natural (not only logical) possibility of inverted spectra. It is also not shaken by examples of reorganization, rewiring, etc. (Gert, 1965(7), Lycan 1973(8), Wittgenstein, 1968(9)). It is also not shaken by kidnapping to a twin earth with a yellow sky. (Block 1990). Here the representations after an acclimatization period will be about yellow. The invariance principle (the preservation of conscious experiences with a changed physical structure of a functionally consistent system) remains.

1. C. L. Hardin, Color for Philosophers: Unweaving the Rainbow, Indianapolis 1988.
2. B. Harrison, Form and Content, Oxford, 1973
3. C. L. Hardin, Qualia and materialism: Closing the explanatory gap. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 48, 1987: pp. 281-98
4. J. Levine, Cool red. Philosophical Psychology 4, 1991: pp. 27-40
5. S. Shoemaker, The inverted spectrum. Journal of Philosophy 79, 1982: pp. 357-81
6. M. Schlick, Positivism and Realism, Erkenntnis 3, 1932
7. B. Gert, Imagination and verifiability. Philosophical Studies 16, 1965: pp. 44-47
8. W. G. Lycan, Inverted spectrum. Ratio 15, 1973: pp. 315-19
9. L. Wittgenstein, Notes for lectures on "private experience" and "sense data". Philosophical Review 77, 1968

Cha I
D. Chalmers
The Conscious Mind Oxford New York 1996

Cha II
D. Chalmers
Constructing the World Oxford 2014

Laws Barrow I 54f
Laws / Natural Laws / Barrow: there is no system of mechanical rules or laws that can be verified other than statistically. - There are always uncertainties, which can be reduced only by repetition - I 55 a statistical law can never be falsified because the result of observations in the future may always be different.
I 186
Universal Law / Laws / Theory of everything/TOE/Great Unifying theory/ GUT / Universality / Eugene Wigner: if the universal law of nature should be discovered, invariance principles would only be mathematical transformations that leave the law invariant - I 187 Relativity / Barrow: when we say that the natural laws match that does not mean that different observers will measure the same quantities.

John D. Barrow
Warum die Welt mathematisch ist Frankfurt/M. 1996

John D. Barrow
The World Within the World, Oxford/New York 1988
German Edition:
Die Natur der Natur: Wissen an den Grenzen von Raum und Zeit Heidelberg 1993

John D. Barrow
Impossibility. The Limits of Science and the Science of Limits, Oxford/New York 1998
German Edition:
Die Entdeckung des Unmöglichen. Forschung an den Grenzen des Wissens Heidelberg 2001

Laws, fundamental Chalmers I 275
Fundamental Law/Laws/Chalmers: according to the arguments in connection with the missing, dancing and inverted Qualia, it is a law that certain functional organizations F, F will be accompanied by a certain kind of conscious experience. We can expect it to be a result of simple yet fundamental psychophysical laws. Until then, our principle of functional invariance (invariance principle, the thesis that two systems with unchanged functional structure will have the same conscious experience when one of the systems has it) serves as a guide for an ultimately valid theory.
I 276
Psychophysical Law/Chalmers: Problem: Our principles (two coherence principles (a) psychological/physical, b) structural) and the invariance principle) are too indeterminate with regard to the psychophysical link between the organization of a system and consciousness.

Cha I
D. Chalmers
The Conscious Mind Oxford New York 1996

Cha II
D. Chalmers
Constructing the World Oxford 2014

Metaphors Lakoff Gärdenfors I 39
Metaphor/Invariance Principle/Lakoff/Gärdenfors: (Lakoff 1993, p. 215) Thesis: Metaphorical images obtain the cognitive topology (i. e. the image-schema structure) of the source region in a way that corresponds to the inherent structure of the target region.
I 40
Gärdenfors: what is transferred is more the pattern than the area-specific information.

Lako I
G. Lakoff
Where Mathematics Come From: How The Embodied Mind Brings Mathematics Into Being 2001

Lako II
George Lakoff
On generative semantics Bloomington 1969

Gä I
P. Gärdenfors
The Geometry of Meaning Cambridge 2014
Metaphors Gärdenfors I 34
Metaphor/Gärdenfors: by distinguishing between dimensional and meronomic (part-whole-) relations, we can explain the difference between metaphors and metonymies. ---
I 39
Metaphor/domains/terminology domain/Gärdenfors: it is natural to assume that a metaphor expresses an identity of the structure between two domains. Here, a word representing a particular pattern in one domain is used in another domain to represent the same pattern. See Invariance Principle/Lakoff: (Lakoff 1993, p. 215). (1) ---
I 40
What is transmitted is rather the pattern than the domain-specific information. N.B.: thus the metaphor can be used to identify a structure in a domain that would otherwise not have been discovered. Thus, metaphors convey new knowledge.
I 247
Metaphors/Gärdenfors: a metaphor does not come alone: it compares not only two terms, but also the structure of two complete (conceptual) spaces. Once the connection is established, it can serve as the source of new metaphors. (See also Lakoff & Johnson (1980) (2), Tourangeau & Sternberg (1982) (3), Gärdenfors (2000, sec. 5.4)). (4) Metaphorical illustrations involve complete conceptual spaces. Properties/Metaphor/Fernandez: Thesis: the interpretation of metaphors emphasizes some properties and suppresses less important properties. (Fernández, 2007, p. 334). (5)

(1) Lakoff, G. (1993). The contemporary theory of metaphor. In A. Ortony (Ed.), Metaphor and thought (2nd ed., pp. 202–251). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

(2) Lakoff, G., & Johnson, M. (1980). Metaphors we live by. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

(3) Tourangeau, R., & Sternberg, R. J. (1982). Understanding and appreciating metaphors. Cognition, 11, 203–244.

(4) Gärdenfors, P. (2000). Conceptual spaces: The geometry of thought. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

(5) Fernández, P. R. (2007). Suppression in metaphor interpretation: Differences between meaning selection and meaning construction. Journal of Semantics, 24, 345–371.

Gä I
P. Gärdenfors
The Geometry of Meaning Cambridge 2014

Qualia Block Chalmers I 250
Qualia/absent qualia/Block/BlockVsChalmers/BlockVsInvariance Principle/Chalmers: (Block 1978): Block thesis: in the case of identical biochemical realization in a non-human system, the Qualia, which accompany the conscious experience in humans, must be missing. E.g. suppose the corresponding organization had been realized in a country, instead of in an organism: This country can certainly have no conscious experiences.
Invariance principle/Chalmers: it follows from this that, in the case of an identical biochemical organization, conscious experiences are possible in a system.

Block I
N. Block
Consciousness, Function, and Representation: Collected Papers, Volume 1 (Bradford Books) Cambridge 2007

Block II
Ned Block
"On a confusion about a function of consciousness"
Bewusstein, Thomas Metzinger Paderborn/München/Wien/Zürich 1996

Cha I
D. Chalmers
The Conscious Mind Oxford New York 1996

Cha II
D. Chalmers
Constructing the World Oxford 2014
Strong Artificial Intelligence Chalmers I 314
Definition Strong Artificial Intelligence/Searle/Chalmers: Thesis: There is a non-empty class of computations so that the implementation of each operation from this class is sufficient for a mind and especially for conscious experiences. This is only true with natural necessity, because it is logically possible that any computation can do without consciousness, but this also applies to brains. ---
I 320
A computational description of a system provides a formal description of the causal organization of this system. ---
I 321
Invariance principle: every system with conscious experiences, which has the same functional organization as another system with conscious experiences, will have qualitatively identical conscious experiences. There may be corresponding causal relations between electronic components like there is between neurons in the brain. Fading Qualia/dancing Qualia: we can use these kinds of qualia for arguments for the strong artificial intelligence.
I 322
If there were two organizationally identical systems, one of which had conscious experiences, and the other not, one could construct a system with fading or dancing qualia that lay between these two systems. That would be implausible. If fading and dancing qualia are excluded, the thesis of the Strong Artificial Intelligence applies. (> Qualia/Chalmers). ---
I 329
VsArtificial Intelligence/Goedel/Chalmers: in a consistent formal system which is expressive enough for a certain kind of arithmetic, one can construct a sentence which is not provable in this system. Contrary to the machine, the human being can see that the sentence is true. ---
I 330
Therefore the human has an ability which the formal system does not have. ChalmersVsVs: there is no reason to believe that the human is aware of the truth of the sentence. At best, we can say that if the system is consistent, the sentence is true. We cannot always determine the consistency of complex systems.
PenroseVsArtificial Intelligence/Chalmers: (Penrose 1994)(1) brings an argument on a lower level: it may be that not all physical processes are computable. ChalmersVsVs: But this is based on the above mentioned Goedel argument. Nothing in physical theory itself supports it.
VsArtificial Intelligence/VsSimulation/Chalmers: what if consciousness processes are essentially continuous, but our simulations are discrete?
I 331
ChalmersVsVs: there are reasons to assume that absolute continuity is not essential for our cognitive competence. However, it might be that a system with unlimited precision (achieved by continuity) has cognitive abilities that a discrete system does not achieve.

1. R. Penrose, Shadows of the Mind, Oxford 1994

Cha I
D. Chalmers
The Conscious Mind Oxford New York 1996

Cha II
D. Chalmers
Constructing the World Oxford 2014

Ultimate Justification Nozick II 131 ff
Explanation/Ultimate Justification/Leibniz/existence/Nozick: 1. Inegalitarian Theory: Distinction of something before the nothing - 2. Egalitarian Theory: (Probability Theory): Nothing is equal: when multiple options are accepted, then nothing is very unlikely because only one of many possibilities can consist. - Richness: all possibilities are realized. - Requirement: possible worlds are separated, otherwise contradictions - realm of possibilities includes possible worlds - in addition: principle of invariance: otherwise there are possible worlds that exclude possibilities: Restricted richness/self-subsumption: validity due to application, reference and supply by itself. Then existence is not a hard fact and not arbitrary (due to invariance). ---
II 137
Explanation/Ultimate Justification/Nozick: Problem: the various limited types of richness all apply because of their limitation and because of their validity and because of their special invariance principle. - This is just the characteristic of reflexivity. ---
II 138
Explanation/Ultimate Justification/Nozick: it is no shame that circularity occurs at the end if it is only avoided in the middle. - It should not be an addition ("and that are all"). - Principle of sufficient reason: every truth has an explanation. ---
II 278
Self-subsumption/self-affirmation/Ultimate Justification/Nozick: self-subsumption is a sign of a fundamentality, not for truth. - Something can be fundamental in one dimension, without being fundamental in another. - A fundamental principle needs not to be "non-circular". - In different realms different relations, orders and connections apply. - E.g. justification, explanation, evidence.

No I
R. Nozick
Philosophical Explanations Oxford 1981

R., Nozick
The Nature of Rationality 1994