Monday, May 11, 2009

It seems as if ...

I have a question about this locution, 'It seems as if p'. If you're anything like me, you rarely notice the perceptual breaks that are due to blinking. Consider two propositions: that it seems as if perceptual awareness is completely unbroken; that it seems as if perceptual awareness is not completely unbroken. If you're anything like me, can it truly be said of you that it seems as if perceptual awareness is completely unbroken _and_ that it seems as if perceptual awareness is not completely broken because it seems the same either way? If so, what does the phenomenal conservative say about the justification we have for believing either that some stretch of experience is broken or unbroken? Do they say that there is a justification available to us that would justify belief in incompatible propositions?

Some 'experimental philosophy' done over breakfast tells me that some of the folk (okay, one folk subject) thought that it seems as if our experience is unbroken, it does not seem as if it is sometimes broken (barring cases where you notice the blinking), but it seems the same whether it is in fact broken or unbroken.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Well, it seems this is similar to saying, it seems as if we are real people with real limbs and so on, it does not seem as if we are just brains in a jar with perceptions that we are people, but it seems the same whether we are in fact people or just confused brains in a jar. That seems as if it is a reasonable statement, well, to a degree.