Definition of phenomenal consciousness

Discussions on the nature of being, existence, reality and knowledge. What is? How do we know?

Re: Definition of phenomenal consciousness

Postby Positor on November 17th, 2020, 9:31 am 

charon » November 13th, 2020, 6:49 pm wrote:I think you're positing (no puns intended!) a state where we feel pain without knowing what it is. Perhaps a very small baby might come into that category. It just cries but doesn't know what's going on. But that's because it's faculties aren't yet developed. It has no idea about anything, not just pain.

Yes – so we can distinguish 'feeling pain' from 'knowing what it is'. Like a baby, an adult whose mental faculties are temporarily or permanently impaired may feel pain without knowing what it is. But it would still be morally wrong to deliberately inflict pain on them. Why? Because pain is an unpleasant experience, and it is happening to them personally – it is not happening to some unconscious body. They have phenomenal consciousness; they have a mind, however limited; there is something it is like to be them.
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Re: Definition of phenomenal consciousness

Postby charon on November 17th, 2020, 12:42 pm 

You haven't answered my question.

How do you know it hurts? Does it hurt if you don't know it does?
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Re: Definition of phenomenal consciousness

Postby Positor on November 17th, 2020, 10:20 pm 

charon » November 17th, 2020, 4:42 pm wrote:How do you know it hurts?

You may not know it hurts. For example, you may be asleep or drugged, and thus unable to achieve the mental state of 'knowing'. It may just hurt!

charon wrote:Does it hurt if you don't know it does?

Yes – see my previous post.
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Re: Definition of phenomenal consciousness

Postby charon on November 17th, 2020, 11:05 pm 

Positor -

Look, you're missing the point, I'm afraid. Otoh, I'm not sure you're really reading these things properly. After a week's interval it's not surprising, I suppose.

This is about consciousness. We're trying to understand consciousness. I'm asking, when something hurts, how one knows it hurts. What makes you say 'It hurts'?

Don't answer by saying you wouldn't know because you might be drugged or disabled, etc, that isn't the point, is it? What enables you to state that you have pain? I've said all this before but, as I said, it's either not been read, not been understood, or just forgotten.

Obviously, to know that you're in pain, that pain has to be recognised, hasn't it? That's a mental operation, a process of knowledge and thought. It's what the word experience means. You experience pain because you recognise it, you know what it is from prior experience.

So I'm asking a very simple thing. If there was no reaction from knowledge, no response of thought, there'd be no experiencing, would there?

Don't say 'But it would still hurt'. How do you know?
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Re: Definition of phenomenal consciousness

Postby Positor on November 17th, 2020, 11:39 pm 

Charon,

We are going round in circles. I assure you that I am just as frustrated with your replies as you are with mine. And I don't like your confrontational attitude. I will not be replying further to you.
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Re: Definition of phenomenal consciousness

Postby charon on November 18th, 2020, 7:14 am 

That's what they all do. I'm not confronting you, I'm just saying it how it is. You're misquoting me. You're using unreal examples to make an erroneous point.

You didn't answer the question at the beginning. You quoted the first paragraph and neglected the rest of it which qualified it. I've no idea whether you understood it or not.

I've thanked you for your replies, made jokes about 'positing', and tried to explain things. There's nothing confrontational about it whatsoever. That's your excuse.

Hopefully they'll shut this thread down now. It's like talking to the dead anyway.
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