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Go live Time : 24 May 2023, 12:55 AM

Neural Substitutuion Fallacy

Representational Qualia Theory points out that consciousness is composed of subjective qualities like redness and greenness. In other words, consciousness is substrate dependent on those qualities. In effect, consciousness is a detector of qualities. So, doing a neuro substitution doesn’t even make sense. For example, if redness changes to something that is not redness, the system must report this change if whatever is responsible for that changes to something that it not redness, otherwise it isn’t unctioning correctly. So given this function, to detect qualities, it is by definition, substrate dependent. 

The neuro substitution argument is essentially quality blind and starts out by ignoring the fact that one of the functions of consciousness is to detect qualities, and report on any changes to any qualities detected. Then it does a slight of hand so that when you replace one of the qualities to be detected, with something different, it also replaces the detector of that quality, so it reports that the quality hasn’t changed, even though it has. This gives the illusion that the system is substrate independent. When in reality, that is the way abstract systems are designed to function in the first place. It doesn’t matter what quality or property represents abstract information, as long as one changes the dictionary appropriately, so the same abstract information is preserved even when it is represented on different properties. 

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