ANSWERS: 2
  • Interesting! Yes, they do. Here is a bit more info on qualia.   "Qualia" (pronounced /ˈkwɑːliÉ™/) is "an unfamiliar term for something that could not be more familiar to each of us: the ways things seem to us". They can be defined as qualities or sensations, like redness or pain, as considered independently of their effects on behavior and from whatever physical circumstances give rise to them. In more philosophical terms, qualia are properties of sensory experiences. The importance of qualia in philosophy of mind comes largely from the fact that they are often seen as posing a fundamental problem for physicalism. Much of the debate over their existence, however, hinges on the debate over the precise definition of the term, as various philosophers emphasize or deny the existence of certain properties. The word "qualia" comes from Latin, meaning "what sort" or "what kind." The Latin and English singular is "quale" (pronounced /ˈkwɑːleɪ/, roughly KWAH-leh)) Believers in qualia are known as qualophiles; non-believers as qualophobes. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Qualia
  • This is the subject of a philosophical debate. 1) ""Qualia" is an unfamiliar term for something that could not be more familiar to each of us: the ways things seem to us. As is so often the case with philosophical jargon, it is easier to give examples than to give a definition of the term. Look at a glass of milk at sunset; the way it looks to you--the particular, personal, subjective visual quality of the glass of milk is the quale of your visual experience at the moment. The way the milk tastes to you then is another, gustatory quale, and how it sounds to you as you swallow is an auditory quale; These various "properties of conscious experience" are prime examples of qualia. Nothing, it seems, could you know more intimately than your own qualia; let the entire universe be some vast illusion, some mere figment of Descartes' evil demon, and yet what the figment is made of (for you) will be the qualia of your hallucinatory experiences. Descartes claimed to doubt everything that could be doubted, but he never doubted that his conscious experiences had qualia, the properties by which he knew or apprehended them. The verb "to quine" is even more esoteric. It comes from The Philosophical Lexicon (Dennett 1978c, 8th edn., 1987), a satirical dictionary of eponyms: "quine, v. To deny resolutely the existence or importance of something real or significant." At first blush it would be hard to imagine a more quixotic quest than trying to convince people that there are no such properties as qualia; hence the ironic title of this chapter. But I am not kidding. My goal is subversive. I am out to overthrow an idea that, in one form or another, is "obvious" to most people--to scientists, philosophers, lay people. My quarry is frustratingly elusive; no sooner does it retreat in the face of one argument than "it" reappears, apparently innocent of all charges, in a new guise. Which idea of qualia am I trying to extirpate? Everything real has properties, and since I don't deny the reality of conscious experience, I grant that conscious experience has properties. I grant moreover that each person's states of consciousness have properties in virtue of which those states have the experiential content that they do. That is to say, whenever someone experiences something as being one way rather than another, this is true in virtue of some property of something happening in them at the time, but these properties are so unlike the properties traditionally imputed to consciousness that it would be grossly misleading to call any of them the long-sought qualia. Qualia are supposed to be special properties, in some hard-to-define way. My claim--which can only come into focus as we proceed--is that conscious experience has no properties that are special in any of the ways qualia have been supposed to be special." Source and further information: "Quining Qualia" http://ase.tufts.edu/cogstud/papers/quinqual.htm 2) "2 Arguments for the existence of qualia 2.1 The Bat argument 2.2 The Inverted Spectrum Argument 2.3 The Zombie Argument 2.4 The Explanatory Gap Argument 2.5 The Knowledge Argument 3 Critics of qualia 3.1 Daniel Dennett 3.2 Paul Churchland 3.3 David Lewis 3.4 Marvin Minsky" Source and further information: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Qualia Further information: - "Qualia"; "Inverted Qualia" http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/qualia/ http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/qualia-inverted/ - "Self-Ascription Without Qualia" http://consc.net/papers/goldman.html - "Three Laws of Qualia" http://www.imprint.co.uk/rama/qualia.pdf - "The easy and hard problems in cognitive science" http://www.qualia-manifesto.com/mogiiccs2003.pdf - "The Qualia Manifesto" http://www.qualia-manifesto.com/ - "What it is like to have an experience" http://www.nyu.edu/gsas/dept/philo/faculty/block/papers/qualiagregory.pdf

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