Saturday, April 21, 2018

Nagel reviews Dennett's new book

See it here. Nagel gives a good overview summary, and I quite agree with a lot that Dennett has to say. But then Nagel gets to the section on consciousness, and how Dennett continues to insist is is merely a useful user-illusion nonetheless. Dennett denounces the first-person perspective because not only can it not understand the true (scientific) nature of its workings but it makes up fictitious reasons for that nature.

This precludes that our 1st person perspective can explore our consciousness while simultaneously also exploring it's 3rd person scientific correlates and sharing with, and learning from, our 2nd person communications with others and culture at large to align our manifest image with the scientific image. This is exactly the sort of investigation going on in neuroscientic studies of consciousness, where 1st person reporting of a subject's experience is indispensable to that investigation while not taking it at face value. That reported experience might not be accurate in itself depending on the subject's manifest image, but as I said, that image can be educated by the scientific image to more accurately interpret that valid experience.

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