There are no phenomenological chairs flying around (beyond what is perceived by each individual, of course).Originally posted by Mentat
I disagree. If a computer were to use the same stimuli on different people, the result should be the same. There needn't be any "underlying representation" (which strikes me as (to use your term) "phenomenological chairs flying around").
Take the case of two people in the matrix, A and B, looking at the same chair from different angles. The computer cannot be feeding the same stimuli into both people, or else they would see the chair from the same angle. There must be some representation of the chair stored as data in the computer to ensure that a) what A and B see is logically consistent with their respective POVs and b) A and B see a logically consistent construct when they look at the chair.
For instance, say A is looking at the chair from directly above, and say B is looking at the chair directly from the side. Suppose there is a circular stain on the seat of the chair. To satisfy a), A must see what looks essentially like a square, and B must see essentially what looks like an angular, lower case 'h'. To satisfy b), A must see the stain on the chair appear to be perfectly circular, and B must see the stain as a compressed ellipse, in such a way that it is consistent with looking at the circular stain from his glancing angle. The computer cannot satisfy a) or b) without keeping track of where the chair is located in the room, or where the observors are with respect to the chair. This mechanism of "keeping track" is simply the computer's internal representation of the room, the chair, and the observors' "matrix bodies." If there were no such internal mechanisms for keeping track of where things were, there could not be a logically consistent presentation of the room to both A and B.
My argument is simply that dualism cannot be ruled out on purely logical bases; that is, that dualism can be logically consistent. We may doubt its veracity on the basis of heuristics such as OR, but that is not a purely logical criterion of judgement; it says nothing about the logical consistency of the framework.Thus your argument, is that it is possible for Dualism to be logically consistent (note: you are not taking a neutral PoV, which would be to refute the arguments of the non-dualist, but are instead making a case for the logical consistency of dualism), and that argument should be able to stand, with less assumptions, against the argument to the contrary, shouldn't it?
You are still thinking in the wrong terms. The matrix is basically a bunch of data stored in computers. What people hooked up to the matrix see is not the most fundamental aspect of the matrix-- the most fundamental aspect is the data in the computers. It is a simple analogy to how we usually think of the real world.But I don't see any reason to agree to this. If there are objective entities, that elicit subjective awareness in the minds of humans, then these objective entities must exist as "phenomenological chairs floating around", so to speak. If, OTOH, Dennett is right, and there are no objective entities in the matrix, then there is only one reality, in which electrochemical stimulation produces subjective awareness in humans (no extra entities required).
data in matrix : matrix perceivers :: atoms/photons : 'real world' perceivers
This analogy works insofar as in both cases, data and atoms/photons work as objectively existing generators of logically consistent input into human brains.