1. Axioms

[updated 12/8/18]

Let’s start at the bottom. After much contemplation, my philosophy currently rests on 3 axioms:

A. Stuff exists

B. Patterns are real

C. Things change

A. When I say “stuff exists”, I mean that the term “existence” will be confined to physical stuff, like trees, atoms, photons, etc. I will have more to say on existence when I write about ontology. In contrast, abstractions like numbers do not “exist”, but then

B. Patterns are real. Everything for which there is or could be a word, but is not a physical thing, is a real, abstract thing, which thing I will refer to as a pattern. Patterns are “mind independent”. The natural numbers are real whether or not anything exists to understand them. Now some patterns are discernible in physical things. For example, the number three is discernible in three apples sitting on a table. For everything that exists, there is a pattern which completely and uniquely describes that thing, but then

C. Things change. To be more specific, things change over time. It turns out there is a recently proposed theory by David Deutsch that expressly addresses this axiom: Constructor Theory. Constructor Theory says that all physical theories can be expressed in terms of which physical transformations (changes) can be made to happen, which cannot, and why. Thus, all of physics is about how things change. In point of fact, everything is about how things change.

So what can we do with these axioms? We can postulate a framework on which to base our philosophy. My framework is this: Everything that happens in the universe, every event, every phenomenon, every “change”, can be described as an Input to a Context which generates an Output. I model this Framework thusly:

Input (x1,x2,…,xn) –> [Context] –> Output (y1,y2,…,ym)

where the x’s and y’s are physically measurable values. What does this framework do for us? Read on and stay tuned.


My poster.

Here is the poster I presented at the 2018 Science of Consciousness conference in Tucson. I was a bit disappointed at the paucity of feedback. I don’t think most people there were interested in a mechanistic explanation of consciousness. Ah well.

[12/8/2018 fix: clicking on link image below links to full size/readable version]

Please comment if you have any interest.




Welcome to my website! Just so ya know, the entire point of this site is to be a place for me to collect my ideas about consciousness. Ultimately, I anticipate putting these ideas in a book. [It could happen.]

Click on the page links above to see the Theory. Leave comments in the appropriate blog entry below.

James of Seattle