Friday, August 15, 2008

Our great unanswered mystery of philosophy, medicine, neuroscience, psychology: how is it that an immaterial thing—consciousness—can act upon, and be acted upon by, a material universe? How can the immaterial and the material causally interact?

One resolution: the perceived material universe is immaterial, for it exists only within the immaterial consciousness. For example: I am a Boltzmann brain, and all of my perceived reality is in fact imagined by me and therefore immaterial; my consciousness can interact with this perceived reality unparadoxically because there is no interaction between the immaterial and the material: my immaterial consciousness is interacting only with itself. The true material reality of the Boltzmann brain that gives rise to my consciousness is unperceived—and perhaps unperceivable—by my consciousness.

The Internet might already be conscious, in a way that we cannot conceive. It might not be able to comprehend, relate to, or communicate with us, just as I cannot comprehend, relate to, or communicate with the neurons of my brain.

Imagine the Internet believing itself to exist in a material universe, but that universe in fact existing only immaterially within the Internet. This is analogous to me as a Boltzmann brain believing myself to exist in a material universe, but that universe in fact existing only immaterially within my consciousness.

1 comment:

Benji (Rafe) Pacheco said...

It's all in the mind!...