Notes On Attention Paid

Follow @mbkriegh on Micro.blog.

Conscious, Annaka Harris

… i bought this book after reading a Brain Pickings post… the subject of consciousness is one of my rabbit hole topics… panpsychism is an exciting rabbit hole within the rabbit hole that i have read a number of books and articles about, including the very dense and, in lots of places (because you need to comprehend high level mathematics), incomprehensible book by Bertrand Russell, The Analysis of Matter… i began reading it before the pandemic broke out… it took months to get through and i can’t claim to have fully understood it because of the aforementioned mathematical content… Russell himself says you can’t fully understand the topic if you can’t fully understand the mathematics, but he minimizes the mathematics for those who don’t…

… for a very thorough treatment of Panpsychism, see the entry in Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy…

… back to Conscious, by Annaka Harris…

… i am 25 pages in and it is clear to me that in 100 pages i am going to get a truly “popular” account of the subject… the initial chapters have been a little frustrating as she presents foundational concepts almost as sufficient arguments and definitions which i know are going to be undermined by a discussion of panpsychism which is, i believe, the main target of the book…

… i did finally realized that she is setting her readers up for an “aha!” moment as the weaknesses and inconsistencies in the earlier part of the book come to a point of breaking, cue the entry of our hero, panpsychism!…

… this approach was found by reviewers on Amazon to be either annoying or successful, and i suspect it has to do with ones prior knowledge of the concepts of panpsychism… mine is, I am guessing, deep relative to the average target audience, though i am at best an advanced beginner… i know her initial development of the subject is problematic, but i believe it will turn out to be intentionally so…

… it will be interesting to see how effective the “aha” moment is when i get to it…