Mind as Hardward and Matter as Software
Present science tries
to avoid the problems
inherent in mind-matter dualistic models by assuming that mind is just
of an objective external world, governed by the laws of physics. In
picture mind appears as a kind of software running on a physical
by the brain.
I think that
this physical reductionism is
incomplete for four reasons:
concept of matter was deconstructed
in quantum mechanics and quantum field theory. Matter can no longer be
considered as a "hardware". It rather appears like pure
cannot be explained by the
information processing in the brain. They indicate the
presence of some kind of
"monitor" on which a part of the information becomes subjectively
"visible" in a specific form.
3) Even if
we had a complete physical
theory of nature, it would not tell us why a universe governed by this
particular theory "exists" and what "existence" means.
4) I believe
that some phenomena occur
which simply do not fit into the reductionistic scientific framework.
I do not think that science can address
these problems completely, but I do think that science can be extended
beyond its present scope.
In my talk, I suggested
the possibility of
a project in which the order of reductionism is reversed.
In such a framework, mental processes would
be fundamental, and everything would be expressed as "consisting of"
mental processes. In the end of my talk, I speculated about several
It was the
first time for me to give a talk
in a "virtual reality". I entered the forum very skeptical, afraid
that some technical problems would make the communication impossible
several times before). Fortunately, such problems did not occur. It was
strange to be unable to see the facial expressions of my audience. I
see whether I was causing impatience, doubts, satisfaction, approval
the atmosphere was so familiar and friendly from the beginning that I
comfortable very soon. In the end, the verbal response completely
for the lack of visual information. The talk (which was roughly half an
long) was followed by an interesting and fruitful discussion, going on
than another 30 minutes. During this discussion, I almost forgot that
not really together in one room. I am very happy that I took this
was given by Piet.