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Author: Kazim Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 25071  
Subject: Re: Consciousness and its relationship to Evolut Date: 6/8/2001 11:55 AM
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Not all awraenesses are concious: most human awareness occurs while humans are conscious, but in pathological states (decorticate states) the subject is aware in a limited sense (ie his remaining brain is in a state of arousal which, had he more brain, would manifest conciousness) in that he can track objects moving across the visual field (for instance) whch demonstrates that information is getting in, being processed and acted on, yet there is no sign of coordinated function that we would assosciate with consciousness. Worms are certainly aware, but no one accuses them of conciousness.

Interesting. I wonder exactly what level of awareness one needs to be considered conscious. Whether a worm is conscious or not (perhaps a better term would be "sentient") might actually be open to some interpretation. Would you consider rats or dogs to be sentient? I have both as pets, and they both seem quite intelligent at times.

Is there, conceivably, an absolute test by which we may say "X is sentient and Y is not"? Or are there varying degrees of sentience which blur into each other?
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