One of my main agenda items is the demystification of consciousness, in order to make progress on more important and pressing issues for humanity. In fact, the meme “(Unlocking) The Mystery / Secrets of xxxx” is a pet hate – a click-bait meme to sell books, but not to enlighten or solve any problem.
Consciousness is no more mysterious than physicalism / materialism (or time, or causation, or …) and science has no problem dealing with these. Science already understands it has nothing to say about internal, intrinsic, qualitative (subjective) nature of … anything … material or conscious or causal or temporal or … It focuses its methods on the objective, observable, quantifiable external behaviour(s) of stuff.
Solms pleads for scientists to Cross the Rubicon and allow the subjective perspectives – their own experience – to enter their considerations, even though they know – we all know – they cannot treat and manipulate them as a “scientific” resource. That’s a deliberate choice by science, by design as it were. Keep calm and carry on. “The science of Galileo wasn’t designed to deal with consciousness.” (Goff)
I personally consider consciousness a known, understood part of reality. I was aghast at a Twitter exchange the other day with Philip Goff perpetuating the mystification of consciousness when I consider him one of those whose done much to demystify it in recent years. “If consciousness isn’t a mystery, I don’t know what is!” (Goff)
This episode of BBC Radio 3 “Free Thinking” has Matthew Sweet giving Philip Goff and Hedda Hassel Morch the opportunity to explain what is known about consciousness from the modern pan-psychist perspective. They’re both absolutely spot on as far as the above is concerned. The neuroscientist Daniel Glaser (like Christoff Koch referenced) spends his time defending what progress science “can” make and ignoring – dissing – the subjective point entirely. Lame! The “deep ecologist” Eccy de Jong at least gets the point of the subjective perspective at all eco-system levels. (Slight diversion on Spinoza and pan-theism. Spinoza is indeed wonderfully lovable, I’m a massive fan, but it doesn’t resolve the point here.)
[Hold – missed this recent PhilEvents workshop – featuring Hedda again and (my hero) Dan Dennett.]
[Hold – need to join-up my reality <> objectivity <> subjectivity “triad” with this “Perception Box” from the Tiny Blue Dot Initiative.]