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Where quale transcends form, function and mind

  1. Jun 6, 2012 #1
    Hello everyone!

    I am stuck in a bit of a conundrum, I am ‘simply’ trying to find out what light ~ colour is.
    I posted on this forum because first I need to know if I have got the whole physical side of things wrong. Its easy to construct theories on thought alone, which I can do with ease, but I want to then find substance. Hope you can help! :)

    Where quale transcends form, function and mind...

    There must be a way in which the mind reads input from the material, that ability, ‘to recognise’ ‘to know’, is there for both the material and immaterial resolution-to-the-matter.

    It makes matter rather more interesting if it can do stuff like that, if it can also be all the things we experience ourselves to be. I’d say once we attribute all those things to the material, then its quite a different thing.

    For example:

    Lets put colour into the material and see what we get;

    We have three boxes, in one, colour is photonic wavelengths, in the next it is electrical signals and chemicals in our brain, in the final box colour is perceptual. So which one is colour in?

    Really it is in neither, its something which flows through them all and changes as required. Which means that it transmigrates form, from light to electric, to perceptual arrangements and patterns.
    For me the brain in a sense listens too and looks at all three boxes, it gives credence to the perceptual box because in that box the world-view has been arranged, its like the image on the monitor rather than the input into the computer.

    However, we can also look in any of the boxes and not find quale as literally there, its neither directly physical nor mental [1][2][below].

    I feel sure though, that colour is out there in the world, this ‘yellow lemon’ I see on the table also has colour ‘quale’, but we can no longer refer to colour as a mental quale. We have found it to be in none of the boxes, yet we know that the yellow lemon is in our perception because we experience it there. We also know from physics that there is a relationship between it and the other boxes, there would be no way for us to determine the yellow lemon as an external object otherwise.


    1. Viking thought experiment; if I take an axe and plunge it into a conscious living human head, then clasp my hands onto the split skull and open it up exposing the brains innards; would I see anything which resembles the mental experience? Would I literally see colours and if spliced carefully in some manner, would I see the image in our minds eye as if displayed on a monitor?
    If I looked at it in every possible manner, through a microscope or via any instrumentation [remember that the colours on a screen are not in the brain, or that screen, but are in the mind], would I see what I am seeing? Would there be words in there, concepts, any quale et al?

    2. If we take Leibnitz example; if the mind was a room, it would be completely empty. The mind only experiences quale when it is directed to either by the senses or the imagination [I wont go into the latter here], otherwise quale do not occur and the mind is empty.

  2. jcsd
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