Understanding Our Differences (Maybe)

I hesitate to respond to Victor Reppert’s latest riposte (April 19) on his Dangerous Idea blog, since BDK and others have already hashed it out with considerable sophistication and subtlety. My aim here, however, is not to refute Victor (knockdown refutations in philosophy occupy a shadowy ontological niche somewhere between very rare and nonexistent), but to understand as clearly as possible just where our differences lie. In my experience, intractable disagreements come down to ground-floor, big-ticket items like a clash of fundamental intuitions or a divergent understanding of some basic point—or maybe just sheer cussedness. Therefore, I do not think the crucial issue will be a technical one. It will not come down to a disagreement between, e.g., type vs. token physicalism or the proper deployment of Lewis-Ramsey sentences, but will be something much more basic. It is like debating William Lane Craig on the Kalaam arguments. You can discuss the details of physical cosmology ad nauseam, but, as Craig admitted in our debate at Indiana University a few years back, ultimately it comes down to conflicting metaphysical intuitions. For Craig, whatever begins must have a cause. To me, an uncaused initial state of the space/time universe seems quite a reasonable postulation—at least as reasonable as postulating a timeless, supernatural creator. I think something this basic comes between me and Victor.

The crucial issue seems to emerge in a quote from my previous posting and Victor’s response.

Parsons:

“When we say that Sam was convinced by Krugman’s arguments it seems to me perverse to attribute some very (I think in-principally) mysterious kind of causal power to the sense or propositional content of Krugman’s arguments. Attributing causal powers to Fregean Sinn (meaning), if this is what Victor wants to assert, just seems to me a straightforward category mistake. It is like saying that the set of all integers broke the deadlock between NFL players and owners. No, to say that Sam was convinced by Krugman’s arguments means that Sam considered Krugman’s claims, examined the supporting reasons, weighed them in the light of prior knowledge and norms of good reasoning, and judged that these were persuasive. However, considering Krugman’s claims, examining the supporting arguments, evaluating them, and judging them to be persuasive are things that Sam does with his brain, and happenings in Sam’s brain, being physical events, can cause things.”

Reppert:

“Well, if Sam’s considering and accepting Krugman’s arguments is a brain process, it looks like we are going to end up attributing properties to Sam’s brain that are going to violate the causal closure of the physical. If Sam finds Krugman’s arguments persuasive, one of the things he has to be persuaded by is the logical connection between the Krugman’s premises and his conclusions. To be aware of something is to be causally influenced by it. So, yes, my awareness of a stop sign causes me to stop, not the stop sign itself. If I don’t see the sign, I’ll barrel right through. But, the stop sign has to cause my awareness of the stop sign. And if the physical is causally closed, then everything that I am aware of has to be also physical, and by physical I take it we mean that it has a particular location in space and time. A logical relationship has no particular location in space and time, and so if I am aware of a logical relationship, and that logical relationship affects my brain, then the causal closure of the physical has been violated, because something that has no particular location in space and time is bringing it about that I think certain things.”

I think the crucial sentence is this:

“To be aware of something is to be causally influenced by it.”

Now, I agree that (putting it very roughly and crudely) things cause my awareness of them. The physical properties of the stop sign must be adduced in an adequate causal account of my awareness of it. What about Sam’s awareness of the logical connection between Krugman’s premises and conclusions? Must not that logical connection likewise cause Sam’s awareness of the logical connections? Victor thinks so and I do not. Why not? What is the difference between the two cases? A stop sign is a thing, but I do not regard the logical connection between premises and conclusion as any kind of a thing at all. As Victor notes, logical relations have no location in space and time. I would add that they have no physical properties at all and since, in my naturalistic view, causal powers exist only in virtue of physical properties, logical relations and other such abstracta can have no causal powers at all.

OK, then, I think that I am finally seeing the essential divide (or at least one of them): I hold that brains could have the power to grasp certain truths even though the objects of that knowledge—those truths—have no causal powers to influence brains or anything else. In other words, I disagree with Victor that it is always or necessarily the case that “to be aware of something is to be causally influenced by it.” When the “something” we are aware of is, for instance, an a priori truth, then the claim seems to me to be obviously, and necessarily, false. To say that my awareness of an a priori truth (which awareness I conceive as a physical state) has causal efficacy certainly seems plausible, but to attribute causality to the a priori truth itself just sounds like gibberish to me—whatever one’s philosophy of mind. That is, whether the knowing self is a Cartesian mind, or a physical brain, or something else, the idea that propositional contents or a priori truths might cause anything seems a bizarre notion to me—a gross category mistake like saying that the number seven is in a bad mood.

I guess, then, what Victor really needs to explain to me is why he holds that it is a necessary truth that “To be aware of something is to be causally influenced by it” when no restrictions or qualifications seem to be placed on the nature of that “something.” This makes sense if the “thing” is a thing—a physical object, but not if the object of knowledge is, say, an a priori truth or a propositional content.

[Note to BDK: In this and my previous postings on this subject, I am not offering or intimating any theory of the nature of propositional contents. I am trying to accommodate what it seems to me that Victor is saying.]

About Keith Parsons
  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12132821431322748921 LadyAtheist

    Isn't Reppert aware of atheism?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/10354805604015803912 Steve Ruble

    This part at the end struck me as odd:

    …if I am aware of a logical relationship, and that logical relationship affects my brain, then the causal closure of the physical has been violated…

    I think writing something like that displays a very deep conviction that awareness is not something that happens in the brain. As you say, such a conviction is probably pretty basic, and not amenable to much argument. But the argument sounds kind of silly when you re-frame it from a physicalist perspective:

    …if my awareness of a logical relationship comprises a set of brain states and possible transitions between them, then the causal closure of the physical has been violated…

    Wait, what?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/16641266062186767500 Keith Parsons

    Steve,

    Good queries. To me it is just nonsense to say that logical relations can cause effects in brains, souls, or anything. If, on the other hand, we postulate that souls have the ability to grasp a priori truths without causally interacting with them, then I do not see why the brain cannot do the same.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/13081990693148277532 woodchuck64

    Victor Reppert wrote:

    A logical relationship has no particular location in space and time, and so if I am aware of a logical relationship, and that logical relationship affects my brain, then the causal closure of the physical has been violated, because something that has no particular location in space and time is bringing it about that I think certain things.

    Working in computer software, this intuition has zero appeal to me. All sorts of logical and mathematical abstractions exist in computer software, but they don't cause anything physically, only the transistors do that. Likewise, logical and mathematical abstractions in our brains don't cause anything, the neuron groups and neural connections encoding the concepts do all the physics that is necessary.

    Of course, what's left out of the software description is our experience of knowing logical abstractions. Fair enough, but one of these days a multi-layered highly parallel computer system brimming with knowledge and meta-knowledge is going to claim to experience logical/mathematical knowledge. At that point, I see no reason to call it a liar.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/07559081710058635050 Pulse

    Reppert said:

    "…the stop sign has to cause my awareness of the stop sign. And if the physical is causally closed, then everything that I am aware of has to be also physical, and by physical I take it we mean that it has a particular location in space and time. A logical relationship has no particular location in space and time, and so if I am aware of a logical relationship…"

    Response:

    What does it mean to be aware of a logical relationship? When I first read this section I tried to imagine how a logical relationship could cause awareness of itself in the same sense as a stop sign. Obviously, we can be aware of a speaker's voice or text on a page which our brains (through a series of states) interpret as language implicating a logical relationship, but sound waves and print have particular locations in space and time, thus fulfilling the criteria that everything that causes awareness must be physical. Everything after that is just brain states causing brain states.

    So I think it is an artifact of language to say we can become aware of abstracta. It is perhaps more appropriate to say we can conceive of abstracta, conception being a thing that the brain does. Awareness does not work in the same sense as for physical objects.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05211466026535549638 Bradley Bowen

    Keith Parsons said…

    "…logical relations and other such abstracta can have no causal powers at all."

    Forgive me for bringing Richard Swinburne into this discussion, but I'm reminded of his comments about the divine attribute "the creator of the universe".

    Swinburne points out various exceptions to the idea that God created everything, and one of the exceptions is the existence of necessary beings, such as numbers

    and logical relations:

    "Secondly, the theist is presumably not claiming that God is the creator of prime numbers, concepts, or logical relations. There are certain things which exist as a matter of logical necessity; that is, the statement that they exist is a logically necessary truth. It is a logically necessary truth that there exists a prime number between 16 and 18, or that there exists a relation of entailment between 'John is over 5 foot tall' and 'John is over 4 foot tall'. Such things which exist as a matter of logical necessity do not, we feel, exist in the hard real way in which tables, chairs, and people do. To say that they exist is not to give us any real information about how things are. That they exist cannot be due to the act of any creator; for they exist just because they are, because the propositions which assert their existence say what they do. For these reasons I suggest that the claim that there exists an omnipresent spirit who is the creator of all things is to be understood as the claim that there exists an omnipresent spirit who is the creator of all things which exist, the existence of which is neither a logically necessary truth nor entailed by his own existence. This we may phrase more briefly as the claim that there exists an omnipresent spirit who is the creator of all logically contingent things apart from himself." (Coherence of Theism, revised ed., p.130)

    A necessary being exists no matter what, so no one can be said to have created or caused the existence of a necessary being.

    Would a similar argument work for the reverse? Since a necessary being exists no matter what, can we rule out the idea of a necessary being as the cause of an logically contingent event?

    I think Swinburne has an argument on that question as well. I will have to check my copy of The Existence of God to find the passage.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/17239457772830013242 tmdrange

    Bradley Bowen quotes Richard Swinburne as follows: "….. there exists an omnipresent spirit who is the creator of all logically contingent things apart from himself." (Coherence of Theism, revised ed., p.130)
    Do you regard that to be meaningful? If so, then what is a spirit supposed to be? And what is it to be omnipresent? There is a pen in front of me. It is in a certain place. If something is omnipresent, then is it also in that place, in addition to the pen? And if so, then is all of it there in that place or just part of it?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/13081990693148277532 woodchuck64

    Pulse,

    What does it mean to be aware of a logical relationship? When I first read this section I tried to imagine how a logical relationship could cause awareness of itself in the same sense as a stop sign.

    I think they're much the same, actually. A stop sign does not shoot out "awareness" rays that impinge on our minds, but rather we desire and carry out a constant visual vigil for such objects while driving because we want to follow traffic rules. In a similar way, we look around in our memory for logical rules to test our beliefs because we want our beliefs to be rational. In both cases I think, we have decided ahead of time that a certain mental abstraction that does not specifically exist in any particular place or time–an image of stop sign, a logical rule– has special significance for an activity.

    I feel like Victor would be more consistent to deny that physical objects can cause awareness under physicalism. Rather, we have a mental abstraction of what a stop sign looks like that itself has no specific physical place or time and we match that to signals coming off our retina, very roughly speaking. But that mental abstraction of a timeless, spaceless stop sign is going to challenge physicalism as much as logical abstractions I'd think.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05211466026535549638 Bradley Bowen

    Here is the passage from The Existence of God (by Richard Swinburne) that I mentioned above:

    "I do not believe there can be any absolute explanations of logically contingent phenomena. For surely never does anything explain itself. P's existence at t2 may be explained in part by P's existence at t1. But P's existence at t1 could not explain P's existence at t1. P's existence at t1 might be the ultimate brute fact about the universe, but it would not explain itself. Nor can anything logically necessary provide any explanation of anything logically contingent. For a full explanation is, we have seen, such that the explanandum (that is, the phenomenon requiring explanation) is deducible from it. But you cannot deduce anything logically contingent from anything logically necessary. And a partial explanation is in terms of something that in the context made the occurrence of the explanandum more probable, without which things would more probably have gone some other (logically possible) way. Yet a world in which some logically necessary truth did not hold is an incoherent supposition, not one in which things would probably have gone some other way. These are among many reasons why it must be held that God is a logically contingent being, although maybe one necessary in other ways."
    (EOG, 2nd ed., p.79)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05211466026535549638 Bradley Bowen

    tmdrange said…

    Bradley Bowen quotes Richard Swinburne as follows: "….. there exists an omnipresent spirit who is the creator of all logically contingent things apart from himself." (Coherence of Theism, revised ed., p.130)
    Do you regard that to be meaningful? If so, then what is a spirit supposed to be? And what is it to be omnipresent?
    ======================
    Response:

    I was focused on Swinburne's claim that nothing could cause or bring about the existence of a necessary being. That part of the passage seems like it might be relevant to the key claim made by Keith Parsons.

    However, I am very interested in the divine attributes, especially Swinburne's views about them, so I don't mind straying from the issue at hand. Others might be less interested in a discussion of 'omnipresence' and 'spirit'.

    Swinburne provides a high-level definition of 'spirit' as a 'bodiless person', and then he analyzes the concept of 'person' in terms of a criterial definition that strikes me as somewhat plausible (perhaps a bit heavy on the cognitive aspects of personhood?). He also provides an analysis (borrowed from another philosopher) of the concept 'Body X belongs to person P', again a criterial definition that strikes me as plausible.

    I think Swinburne has done a good job of clarifying the term 'spirit' although I'm not yet convinced that the claim that 'There is a being that is a spirit' is a coherent claim. So, I'm not yet convinced that the claim 'There is a being that is an omnipresent spirit' is a coherent claim.

    However, if the former claim is coherent, I don't see a problem with the view that the latter claim is coherent, so long as 'omnipresent' is understood as Swinburne defines it, which is in keeping with how Aquinas defines it: (a) having the power to affect any object at any location AND (b) having knowledge of what is taking place at any and every location, without the use of senses or other causal mechanisms.

    Actually, part (b) of omnipotence does seem suspect to me. I'm not clear whether it is logically possible for somone to have justified beliefs about events without some sort of causal mechanism to transfer information.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05211466026535549638 Bradley Bowen

    I meant "part (b) of omnipresence" (not omnipotence).

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05348780254008374268 Tristan D. Vick

    I love the Secular Outpost, and I started a new blog with some fellow skeptics in the same fashion. We'd love for you to drop by and check us out!

    http://threeskeptics.blogspot.com/

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/16641266062186767500 Keith Parsons

    Pulse & Woodchuck64,

    You raise a number of interesting points. I regard knowledge of a priori truth as caused; it just makes no sense to me to say that those a priori truths themselves are part of the causal story.

    Consider an example: I know–a priori–that the sentence of propositional logic "(A & B) -> A" is true. It is a tautology. It's form is such that every substitution instance, including "(A & B) -> A," is true. Why? Because we DEFINE the logical connectives "&" and "->" so as to make it so. Ultimately, "(A & B) -> A" is true because we have committed ourselves to regarding any expression of that form as true. Other systems of logic might (and do) make other commitments.

    It appears to me, then, that awareness of the truth of "(A & B) -> A" is ultimately caused by our awareness of our decisions about the meaning of logical connectives. Nothing mysterious here. Logical truths do not emanate some occult causal influence to implant awareness in our consciousness. Brains can know what brains decide to do.

    Of course, I am not claiming that all a priori knowledge is like my above simple example. However, I do think it is an instructive example.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14016304294151589119 cayuse

    Einstein saw the Vast Harmony of the Cosmos as a combination of science and religion

    For science can only ascertain what is, but not what should be, and outside of its domain value judgments of all kinds remain necessary. Religion, on the other hand, deals only with evaluations of human thought and action: it cannot justifiably speak of facts and relationships between facts. According to this interpretation the well-known conflicts between religion and science in the past must all be ascribed to a misapprehension of the situation which has been described.

    For example, a conflict arises when a religious community insists on the absolute truthfulness of all statements recorded in the Bible. This means an intervention on the part of religion into the sphere of science; this is where the struggle of the Church against doctrines of Galileo and Darwin belongs. On the other hand, representatives of science have often made an attempt to arrive at fundamental judgments with respect to values and ends on the basis of scientific method, and in this way have set themselves in opposition to religion. These conflicts have all sprung from fatal errors. (Albert Einstein, 1941)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14016304294151589119 cayuse

    Like Einstein

    Yogananda
    The ancient Vedic scriptures declare that the physical world operates under one fundamental law of maya, the principle of relativity and duality. God, the Sole Life, is an Absolute Unity; He cannot appear as the separate and diverse manifestations of a creation except under a false or unreal veil. That cosmic illusion is maya. Every great scientific discovery of modern times has served as a confirmation of this simple pronouncement of the rishis.

    Newton's Law of Motion is a law of maya: "To every action there is always an equal and contrary reaction; the mutual actions of any two bodies are always equal and oppositely directed." Action and reaction are thus exactly equal. "To have a single force is impossible. There must be, and always is, a pair of forces equal and opposite."

    Fundamental natural activities all betray their mayic origin. Electricity, for example, is a phenomenon of repulsion and attraction; its electrons and protons are electrical opposites. Another example: the atom or final particle of matter is, like the earth itself, a magnet with positive and negative poles. The entire phenomenal world is under the inexorable sway of polarity; no law of physics, chemistry, or any other science is ever found free from inherent opposite or contrasted principles.

    Physical science, then, cannot formulate laws outside of maya, the very texture and structure of creation. Nature herself is maya; natural science must perforce deal with her ineluctable quiddity. In her own domain, she is eternal and inexhaustible; future scientists can do no more than probe one aspect after another of her varied infinitude. Science thus remains in a perpetual flux, unable to reach finality; fit indeed to formulate the laws of an already existing and functioning cosmos, but powerless to detect the Law Framer and Sole Operator. The majestic manifestations of gravitation and electricity have become known, but what gravitation and electricity are, no mortal knoweth

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14016304294151589119 cayuse

    -Yogananda (not Cosmic Consciousness not Churchianity and Dogma of Religion

    -Yogananda
    To rise above the duality of creation and perceive the unity of the Creator was conceived of as man's highest goal. Those who cling to the cosmic illusion must accept its essential law of polarity: flow and ebb, rise and fall, day and night, pleasure and pain, good and evil, birth and death. This cyclic pattern assumes a certain anguishing monotony, after man has gone through a few thousand human births; he begins to cast a hopeful eye beyond the compulsions of maya.

    To tear the veil of maya is to pierce the secret of creation. The yogi who thus denudes the universe is the only true monotheist. All others are worshiping heathen images. So long as man remains subject to the dualistic delusions of nature, the Janus-faced Maya is his goddess; he cannot know the one true God.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/07559081710058635050 Pulse

    Well… that was off topic.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14016304294151589119 cayuse

    Pulse

    You must look at all 3 post to see that they address the difference of Science and Religion.

    What their another issue than that?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/07559081710058635050 Pulse

    Yes, the topic is not science versus religion. It's metaphysical naturalism versus dualism (or some other metaphysical supernatural philosophy). Specifically, the topic is the nature of awareness and causation in mental thought processes, a topic which you didn't even mention much less address. Did you even read the original blog post?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14016304294151589119 cayuse

    Pulse, I read the Blog. Einstein and Yoganand speak directly to what you would call Duality And Metaphysics

    "Duality. Plato and Aristotle deal with people's "intelligence" (a faculty of the mind or soul) could not be identified with, or explained in terms of, their physical body (or nature)

    Metaphysics
    Aristotle's Metaphysics was divided into three parts, which are Ontology, Natural Theology, Universal science

    I guess I don't see your distinction Science (What Nature Is) and Religion (What though, truth, ideas, GOD) are not the Set or Sub set Duality and Metaphysics.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/07559081710058635050 Pulse

    Nice ancient history lesson.

    Back on topic, what is your opinion on whether abstractions (as opposed to physical objects and forces) have causal power over future thoughts and actions?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/10962948073162156902 Victor Reppert

    If abstractions have no causal power, then what would be the difference between a veridical perception of a logical relationship and a non-veridical or hallucinatory perception?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/07559081710058635050 Pulse

    Victor Reppert,

    So you're saying that I have this perception of a logical relationship, and you're asking me how I can tell whether the perception is based on reality or hallucinatory. To be honest, I really don't know. All I can say is that the perception is caused by reality in the sense that a series of physical states have led to the formulation of this perception in my brain. This perception may have had its roots in sensory stimuli or chemical imbalances, I'm not really sure. Hallucinations are tricky like that. If you meant something else by this query, then please enlighten me because I'm honestly confused.

    You are furthermore implying that if I could tell the difference, then this would be evidence that the logical relationship itself has causal power rather than the perception of that logical relationship, hallucinatory or otherwise. Again, I don't follow. It seems to me that I would be equally influenced by the perception of the logical relationship regardless of whether the logical relationship itself were true or not.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14016304294151589119 cayuse

    Victor Ruppert,

    First you should understand I am a Yogi. The most intellectual logic I use is Boolean Logic in IT and Business Relationships “A union B”,” A and B” or “A or B”. The logic constructs of the computer logic.
    From an experience perspective, Instinct has been related to feeling or perception relative to their consistency and results. I relate that to the soul or my character.
    In yoga I have great experience in Veridical Perception. I practice to energize the energy force within and without using will power to direct that energy. By following the breath I am able to concentrate on one thought. Taking this one thought in meditation to a single mantra of "OM" or Holy Ghost I gain much light within, by practice this meditation it creates a concentration of light known to us who practice as the Astral Star. In this state the feeling of JOY and Bliss is perceived as a structure of light with a Silver Star, opal background and golden ring. No sense stimulus but maintained within. This state JOY is then brought back to the conscious waking state . I practice going into and out of these states conscious (eyes straight), sub-conscious (eyes down) and super-conscious states (eyes up).
    Interesting it is to use empirical physical body/mind to experience the metaphysical, Ironic. Yogananda uses methods and practices dating 4000 years. These methods have the Ghana Yoga or intellectual knowledge of natural science and intuitive interpretations. I am afraid I practice Being more than thinking. As a programmer I think for a living.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/16641266062186767500 Keith Parsons

    Victor,

    You ask:

    "If abstractions have no causal power, then what would be the difference between a veridical perception of a logical relationship and a non-veridical or hallucinatory perception?"

    Huh??? Sorry, but I just do not understand your question. To me it is like asking "If Saturday is not in bed, then how can we know anything at all?" That is, frankly (and I don't know how to say this nicely) it sounds like gibberish to me–the kind of gibberish that arises from gross category mistakes. To speak of, e.g., the entailment relationship between a set of premises and a conclusion as having some sort of causal power just seems a blatant (indeed paradigmatic) misunderstanding of the basic concepts. It seems to me just as egregious as saying that seven is envious of four or that the set of all dictators has been deposed. I just don't get it.

    My aim in these recent exchanges has been to pinpoint the essential differences between the two of us. Maybe this is it. Locutions that make sense to you are paradigms of meaninglessness to me.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14016304294151589119 cayuse

    Keith Parsons,

    The difference is intellectualizing vs. behavior and motivation. You may have the difference correct. To me Maslow's Hierarchy of needs explains motivation of D-Needs and B-Needs.

    The purpose is different. Me I am well into the B-Needs maturity of my motivation. Not sure how to classify you Deficiency need is hard for me to classify because I am beyond actualiztion into transcendence. Knowing the chemical, physiological or atomic explanation is not that intresting.

    Kind of like not experiencing an Orgasm because I cannot explain it.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14544680532155804010 Brenda

    Ruppert said: – "what would be the difference between a veridical perception of a logical relationship and a non-veridical or hallucinatory perception?"

    To which Keith replied: "I just do not understand your question."

    The argument from illusion used against naive realism asserts that because we cannot distinguish veridical perception (I see my hand) from the non-veridical case (I see pink elephants) that therefore naive realism must be false. Victor appears to have adapted that argument and applied it to the question of rationality vs free will. If our mental states are fully determined and free will is an illusion then on what basis are we able to assert the truth of a proposition *because* it is true, rather than to some other cause.

    John Searle makes a similar argument, that if determinism is true then rational discourse is impossible because the truth of a proposition depends not on brain states but on it actually being true. Searle does not argue for god of course, he's an atheist, but he does say that we cannot do without at least a belief in free will. Which he readily admits is not a sufficient argument against determinism.

    woodchuck64 said – "All sorts of logical and mathematical abstractions exist in computer software"

    No they don't. Logical syntax does not exist *in* software. Logical relations are *assigned* to various machine states. Computers cannot and never will become minds because syntax is insufficient for semantics. Meaning is assigned, it does not exist outside of those minds that assert that meaning.


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