Friday, 7 May 2010
Electrons and Qualia
One of the conclusions from my previous post is that no idea or concept inside a human mind can be expressed in one hundred percent precision. Language is a mechanism for putting thoughts into sentences. A sentence is only a projection of a thought; in the same way as two dimensional images in our retina are projections of three dimensional objects. But the brain does not usually have problems to reconstruct the real objects. This provokes a question: what is a real object? Take, for example, an electron. We can distinguish one electron from another, because they may occupy different parts of space. However there is no way to distinguish them if you exchange their positions. That means that the electron is really the same at this place and at another place. Now, is it really two different electrons, or just one, the same electron appearing to us at two different places? There is no answer to this question. You can only believe in one or the other way. If it is the same electron at different places, then in our perception it is equivalent to a pattern. Suppose you look at a sequence of numbers, and you notice a particular pattern in that sequence. Does the pattern really exists or is it your brain that creates that concept? As far as you can differentiate something (electron, pattern) from something another, this is a real concept which can verbally be transferred using language. But this concept can be expressed only as a difference, not the concept itself. It is the same as you are not able to explain what red colour is, but you can show and confirm with others that you can differentiate red and green colours. So if you loose, for some reason ability to differentiate positions (plus maybe some other quantum states such as momentum and spin) of electrons, then a particular electron would become a quale - a not expressible concept like red colour! Then if electron, the basic element of the material world, can be a quale, what is the material world? Qualia?