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Conclusions

Intuition is an essential guide to scientific and philosophical progress, but it is circular when dealing with the fundamental concepts of these disciplines. When intuition and intellect progress far enough in their development of a fundamental discipline, it is time to cut the cord by making all assumptions explicit and looking for the simplest possibility that explains what we know, even if that means disregarding what seems self evident. This has proved remarkably successful in the foundation of physics and mathematics, although the process is complete in neither discipline. Neural science and artificial intelligence have progressed to the point where the same approach may be usefully applied to the problem of consciousness. This leads to the Totality Axiom and the rules of consciousness that postulate an identity relationship between physical structure and conscious experience. Those two terms describe external and internal views of a single physical conscious reality.

Prominent thinkers have followed different paths to other forms of panpsychism. Some have speculated that the future evolution of complexity and consciousness may create experience vastly richer than what exists today.

Mathematics proves that following a limited number of paths, or limiting the absolute resources for a single path, of future development leads to a Gödelian limit infinitely far from what is possible. This mathematics seems to be reflected throughout biological and cultural evolution as two competing instincts for diversity and concentration of resources. Understanding the necessity of this conflict in its widespread manifestations is one of the keys to moving it away from dangerously destructive outlets.

Our ethics needs objective guidance to grow commensurate with the challenges of an exponentially expanding technology. Understanding the relationship between physical structure and conscious experience may be one key to finding this guidance.30





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