The Nature of Consciousness.
What is the nature of consciousness and what is its relation to the physical world? In this episode of Meta Treks, hosts Zachary Fruhling and Mike Morrison explore the many ways that the nature of consciousness is portrayed in Star Trek. Focusing on the "hard problem" of consciousness (how subjective experience arises out of physical systems), Zachary and Mike explore different philosophical theories of consciousness, such as: mind-body dualism, physicalist theories of consciousness (identity theory, behaviorism, functionalism, non-reductive physicalism, and emergentism), and the problem of mental causation. Zachary and Mike also debate forms of consciousness found uniquely in Star Trek, such as the joint consciousness of the Trill, the collective consciousness of the Borg, the consciousness produced by Data's positronic brain, and the dualist nature of Spock's katra.
Welcome to Episode 13 (00:01:08)
Winner of the Meta Treks iTunes Review Contest (00:02:54)
The Hard Problem of Consciousness (00:08:14)
Consciousness Stories in Star Trek (00:11:40)
What is it like to be a [fill in the blank]? (00:14:03)
Trill Consciousness (00:22:42)
The Borg and Collective Consciousness (00:29:01)
Mind-Body Dualism and Spock's Katra (00:35:14)
Mental Causation and the Problem of Causal Exclusion (00:45:03)
Non-Reductive Physicalism (00:50:20)
Identity Theory and Data's Positronic Brain (00:57:21)
Behaviorism and Data's Yellow Tears (01:04:19)
(Fully) Functionalism (01:16:53)
Final Thoughts (01:23:09)