The West has put in place a separation between
Philosophy and Religion. I think we have done this because of a
desire to separate reasoning from belief. The very accurate
assumption being that those who believe do so despite evidence to the
contrary and are therefore prone to mental disorder that mitigates against
rational thinking. Here, I suspect, rational thinking is not
something one believes in, rather it is something one practices, otherwise
philosophy would be a religion.
I am too old, too cantankerous and too irrational to
put reason into a temple. The academic philosopher has a job to
keep. He is a courtier after funding. So all the more exciting
to enter the world of Philosophy and Consciousness. A catchy little
title to excite the student body.
Difficult to imagine a Western Philosopher exploring
his mind for evidence of a material origin. In the matter of 'qualia'
he endeavors to do this reasonably. For the sensible, who have avoided
this word, I will say 'qualia' and its singular 'quale', mean to refer to
such things as "what a head ache feels like" or "what it is
like to see the color green". Introspective mental phenomena that
are experienced, and which are the central feature of the "mind/body
problem". And here the "mind/body problem" so
resembles the "philosophy/Religion problem", and both problems
appear to be a problem for philosophy, not for religion.
Those philosophers I have read who are employed by
philosophy have that same smell of devout cloth about them. Sometimes
they are "with it and groovy". Sometimes they are stuffy and
superior. Those philosophers I have read who are not employed by
philosophy tend to contain a passion that suggests belief.
Either way, the expression "a ghost in the
machine" has my admiration. Not because it is a derogation of
dualism, but because it expresses the problem.