Re: Definition please

From: Ray Recchia (
Date: Sat Dec 01 2001 - 17:07:22 GMT

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    Subject: Re: Definition please
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    Hi Ted. Thanks for responding.

    At 01:07 PM 11/30/2001 -0800, you wrote:

    > > With my eyes, my ears, and my sense of feeling I observe the world outside
    > > my body. I also have internal sensors that tell me the status of my
    > > physical condition, like pain receptors, the things that tell me when I am
    > > hungry, and the senses that allow me to be aware of the placement of my
    > > limbs. Similarly I have senses inside my brain that make me aware of my
    > > mental state.
    >No such senses are known to exist. Your statement is unscientific.
    When I realize that I am happy I am engaging an internal sense similiar to
    the hunger that I feel. I am labelling both of them senses. Although
    'happy' isn't well defined it certainly exists.

    >As far as anyone knows, the brain is no more aware of us than we are of it.

    I am aware of myself. I and my brain are the same thing. I think you have
    said this yourself in the past.

    > > With extensions of my external senses I can examine my body
    > > from the outside. Those external extensions allow me to engage in very
    > > precise measurements that my senses by themselves are incapable
    > > of. And which those extensions we have learned a more precise and
    > > quantifiable fashion what exactly is happening inside my stomach that my
    > > internal sensors report as hunger. There is no way at the present to
    > > similar extensions inside my head to measure more precisely what the
    > > internal sensors of my state of mind tell me.
    >Every hear of psychology? Just as we can scientifically measure what's
    >going on in our bodies far more accurately than our internal senses allow
    >for, we can gauge our mental processes to a much greater degree of precision
    >with the help of psychological tools.

    First you said that no internal senses existed. Now you say that we can
    gauge them to a greater degree of precision with psychological
    tools. Which is it Ted? If you acknowledge them now you are being....

    The inaccuracies of measurement come from of lack of ability to precisely
    correlate our internal senses with tangible physical phenomena observable
    by our external senses.

    Actually before you mentioned it in your post I had never heard of
    psychology. I looked it up on the web though and I thank you for opening
    up this brand new field of discovery to me. Statements like 'Ever hear of
    psychology?' don't really enhance the discussion on this list imho.

    I think though that this psychology that you speak of might be one of the
    ways in which some usefulness can be derived from a mental version of the
    meme which is in fact my position. I acknowledge though that until an
    internal and external explanation can correlated with each other we will be
    working with uncertainties.

    >As you point out, we create computers. In other words, they don't create
    >themselves. That's why computers don't provide a useful analogy to
    >brain-minds. Explaining computers does nothing to explain us.

    The analogy is that computers also have methods of demonstrating their
    internal state that do not require external physical examination. The
    difference is not that we made them, but that we possess a complete
    understanding of how the internal and external correlate in a computer.

    In a more general fashion though I would have to dispute your contention
    that explaining computers does nothing to explain humans. Neural net
    computer models have had some use in understanding actual neural
    nets. Parallel computing was I believe in part inspired by brains and also
    provides a useful analogy in explaining them. I suspect that there are
    other uses as well.

    > > The lack of precision and external verification form the basis for a lot
    > > the objections to the 'meme in the mind' stance. The two solutions to
    > > have been offered by Gatherer and Lynch respectively and labelled G-meme
    > > and L-meme.
    >That's like saying we have two "solutions" to the question of the identity
    >of a coin: the "heads" school and the "tails" school. Clearly, neither of
    >these options offers a genuine answer.
    I think your last paragraph restates the theme of my post so I guess I am
    in general agreement with you. However, I don't believe that there ARE
    genuine answers here; just an argument over imperfect competing scientific

    Ray Recchia

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