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Saturday 29Login ] [ Main index ] [ Post a new message ] [ Search | Check update time | Archives: 123[4]567 ]
Subject: I see you glazed over the allegations of paranoia altogether. Why don't you address that?

The Chadistumper
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Date Posted: 19:41:11 12/07/02 Sat
In reply to: chadi 's message, "First, what's wrong with my spelling of "consciousness"? Second, you'd better watch the documentary movie "the animal mind" on a TV station called "Animal Planet"." on 15:41:45 12/07/02 Sat

If you look in the body of the message I was replying to, you did misspell consciousness; but that is the least important of any of the points I was raising.

Secondly, I would give the dictionary a little more credibility than something I saw on "Animal Planet."

Consciousness, as I define it in terms of the present discussion, refers simply to an awareness of one's environment, and an ability to respond to external stimuli by processing information internally. Just because an animal, plant, amoeba or cell doesn't do that at the same levels doesn't mean that they aren't aware. Critical thinking is simply a more sophisticated degree of awareness. Animals and plants are most certainly conscious, or aware of their environments, in that they naturally experience external stimuli and react to those stimuli, even if there's no contemplation involved. Rocks and inert matter simply don't do this. How do you distinguish between the mental state of an animal who is awake and aware of its surroundings vs. an animal who is sleeping and unaware, if consciousness isn't there?

I'm surprised that you, being an avowed animal rights advocate, would feel that animals lack consciousness. In fact, most animal rights advocates base their positions on the very fact that animals DO have consciousness, in the sense that they not only respond to their environments, but in that they also experience emotion and volition. This is why they say animals must be treated ethically. If they are, as you propose, simply automatons, void of conscious awareness, then it means nothing for us to slaughter them in the harshest of ways. It would be like slaughtering a robot. Thus, you might decide that a revision of your definition is in order.

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