Brian O'Shaughnessy

in Consciousness and the World

Published in print January 2003 | ISBN: 9780199256723
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191598135 | DOI:

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Why is consciousness so closely linked to perception? It is because consciousness is directed to the World, and perception our ultimate mode of access to the World. Thus, the most fundamental of the empirical relations of consciousness to the World is the perceptual. Through it the mind acquires both the content necessary for intentionality, and an awareness of the setting in which to lead a life. What does consciousness bring to this situation? Apart from availability of the perceptual Attention, the most important property is the rationality of the state. Two mental conditions of rationality were explored: self‐knowledge, and an overall mental activeness and pre‐eminently the active process of thinking. Then in the state of consciousness thus constituted we typically encounter the phenomenon of perception, set in the stream of experience, the unique experience, which is of the species‐type, experience‐of. Here we have the original epistemological relation between consciousness and the World, and the basis of all more developed or thought‐mediated intentional consciousnesses. Then, sight has a multitude of assets that make it the most effective example to demonstrate how in the perceptions of the conscious we encounter the fully constituted object in its universal setting. At that point, consciousness fufils an appointed destiny.

Keywords: Attention; consciousness; experience; mind; perception; rationality; sight

Chapter.  7733 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Mind

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