Magic Pixies: "The Character of Consciousness" by David J. Chalmers

The Character of Consciousness - David J. Chalmers

(Original Review, 2010-10-30)

Is the assumption that brains are "just magic" - unlike kidneys or spleens or bones correct? This elevation of "consciousness" to an almost dualistic status is irritating beyond belief, and seems to stem (pardon the pun) from the fact that brains are hellishly complicated and difficult to measure (difficult, but becoming easier).

Philosophers have proven USELESS at answering questions, but particularly useFUL at asking the wrong ones. We never did get a straight answer as to how many angels could dance on the point of a needle (or head of a pin depending on your source, it matters not). If I have learnt anything from my experience as a scientist, it is that sometimes, if you ask a stupid question, you get a stupid answer, and so continuing to ask the stupid question in the hope that the answer will become sensible is actually not very bright. "What is it like to be a bat?" Hmm, not sure.
If you're into stuff like this, you can read the full review.