According to Roger Penrose ( see YouTube video) consciousness is not a computation. Martin Gardner in his essay ‘The Mystery of Free Will’ says ‘Free will in my opinion is another word for self-awareness or consciousness. I cannot conceive of one with out the other.’ I agree with both these statements.

The excellent film Ex Machina, gives us a robot that thinks and feels and develops a justifiable hatred for her creator. The script is so good that it is not difficult to suspend disbelief. Here is a short poem that deals light-heartedly with the same topic.

When the figure standing near the door
touched his peaked cap,
bent stiffly at the waist 
and turned his head in my direction,
I was startled and amused.

A deep voice from somewhere inside him
gravely wished me a good day.
This too was delightful,
especially as the question of sincerity
simply didn't arise.

Published by davidcookpoet

I am a husband, father and grandfather. I retired from a busy working life as an adult psychiatrist in 2014. My interests are in literature, philosophy, modern jazz and horse racing. I might represent those four fields by Shakespeare, Kant, Charlie Parker and Lester Piggott. Like nearly all of us, I can identify a number of formative experiences, one of which was a psychotic episode in my first year as a psychiatrist. This reinforced an already established interest in mystical experience, and a sense of how little human beings know. My intellectual bugbear is reductive materialism, and I am surprised at the lack of moral imagination of those who promulgate such views. It seems to me they need to consider ,perhaps by exposure, just why totalitarianism is so horrific.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: