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Form and Force

January 31, 2012 Leave a comment Go to comments

> Great, still on the same page. Without getting into speculations about the
> kinds of subjective experience a synthetic organism might have, we agree
> that whatever they do experience would be shaped in some way by their
> organization (like having rods and cones or the silicon equivalents would
> allow for the possibility of the experience of color).

It’s bi-directional. The organization and experience shape each other. They are part of the same thing, although perpendicular (organization is material forms across volumetric space, experience is entangled perceptions through sequential time…exact opposites, always.)

> We also apparently agree that it is the interactions among the parts (eg
> the forces), and not what the parts are made of per se, that determines the
> subjectivity

No, the interactions arise from the parts themselves, just as civilization arises from a history of actual human beings living and working together. The culture is not an expression of abstract forces among people, it is a concrete realization of people themselves, just as a coral reef is an expression of coral, not reefness.

> (granting your point that different substrates might not have
> identical dynamics).  If a silicon organism and a carbon based organism did
> hypothetically experience identical forces, as you say, they would be
> identical.

Right, because forces are figurative. All forces are experiences of physical beings (person, asteroid, star, atom, etc). When we experience our own forces, it’s consciousness, life, work, family, friends, dreams, etc. When we experience something else’s forces, it depends how similar that thing is to us. If it’s pretty similar, we say it’s an animal, and it’s forces are instincts. If it’s a cell or molecule, we say it’s chemical reactions. If it’s a physical substance we say it’s energy. It’s all one thing – stuff being and doing. Not beingness and doingness pretending that it’s stuff. Again, it’s more useful to model it the wrong way, because that’s how we can figure out how to cheat the system, but if we want to understand what is actually going on and what consciousness really is, we need to turn it inside out and come to our own senses.

  1. Arpana Marilu Holmes
    January 31, 2012 at 7:28 pm

    So, what do you think about this theory that “We are the Divine (un-materialized force?) having a human experience (stuff being and doing?), NOT Humans having a divine experience”?

    • February 1, 2012 at 1:08 am

      Yes, in one sense that’s true, but the opposite is true as well. We are also the inconsequential debris of an indifferent physical machine. It is the symmetry of those two truths which is more interesting than the belief in either theory. Not only is it interesting to juxtapose the implications of these ideas, the attitudes and practices that tend to follow from people’s belief in them, but the strength of the belief – the range between philosophical musing and fanatical literalism is what fascinates me. It is in their fanatical extreme that their deep similarity is revealed. As a divine spirit wearing human clothes or as a mechanically evolved body hallucinating in the dark, the result is the same, a profound unrealism and disconnection with ordinary concerns. We don’t have to worry because we are special, or we don’t have to care because nobody is special. Either way we are off the hook for any true personal accountability but we are united with a sense of the infinite or the eternal.

      IF we take a strong disbelief in both of those extremes, we would get a common sense, pedestrian realism which envelops us with participation in our everyday world as a person. Here we are united with the finite and the contemporary, neither divine nor mechanical, but fully human. This centrist ethos can be taken to fanatical extremes as well, with many familiar human polarizations; liberty vs law, domestic vs professional, education vs entertainment, urban vs rural, male vs female, etc.

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