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In contemporary philosophy of mind consciousness is in the centre of most debates, despite that the notion is far from being clear. The main reason for those ambiguities is a special relation between consciousness and subjectivity. Subjectivity came along into the problem of consciousness together with an old notion of qualia. It seems as if we could not define consciousness without any reference to subjectivity and qualia, nor could we give any adequate explanations of consciousness without explaining them first. This explicatory and explanatory connection looks inseparable, but probably is wrong. The paper points out that in order to be compatible with the actual, empirical knowledge about living creatures and cognitive agents we should extend the notion of subjectivity. However, the extended subjectivity is no longer distinctive for any kind of consciousness. If we accept this up-to-date understanding of subjectivity we shell end up with a conviction that the notions of phenomenal consciousness and qualia are needless, at least. They were intended to distinguish subjective states from other conscious states, now the intention is pointless. Not only because all consciousness is subjective, but also because there are subjective states which are not conscious. Finally, without eliminating subjectivity we separate it from consciousness. Both are real features but considered as explicatory and explanatory independent which makes their characteristic much clearer. Consciousness is best characterized in terms of the consecutive levels of access to the information processed by a subject. Subjectivity is as an ontological feature of uniqueness of the states of an individual system. Subjective states exist only inside the system or an organism that we call subject and only as being actually experienced, that is why they are directly accessible only for their subject.
Content available remote Realita mysle ako podmienka identity ľudskej osoby
Studia theologica
tom 10
nr 4
This paper argues for the thesis that the reality of mind is a necessary as well as sufficient condition for a diachronic identity of human person. The impossibility of elimination of qualia and intentionality and thus the impossibility of eliminative materialism was proved here. An impossibility of the theory of identity of types and individuals, together with the impossibility of functionalism as one of the versions of eliminative materialism was proven through a careful consideration of Libet's experiments. Subsequently, dualism surfaced as further option. The views of interactive dualism of Popper and Eccles and that of pragmatic dualism of Carrier and Mittelstrass turned out to be unsuitable in some of their consequences. Hylemorphic dualism turned out to be the best explanation from the sorts of dualism discussed in this paper. Through its understanding of mind as a form, hylemorphic dualism enables us to explain causality as formal and final and thus to separate it form the efficient causality of empirical objects. By this, it also explains the diachronic identity of human person possible.
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