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Riccardo Manzotti
The Relational Nature of the Physical World as a Foundation for the Conscious Mind


I present here a non reductionistic ontological framework that aims at providing a neutral foundation both for the mental and the physical aspects of reality. The framework should be able to account for a theory of levels of reality. Is the physical world relational? Is the physical world devoid of qualities? The most common answer to both questions is negative. A widespread tradition defends a not relational physical and quality-free world. Yet we experience qualities. Qualities are an empirical fact. At the same time, it has been observed that our mental states are relational. The picture is made more difficult by the unclear relation between the qualitative and the relational aspect of the mind. And yet, is the physical world really not relational and quality free? I will argue that we should not necessarily answer positively to this question. This paper is principally an attempt to argue that the physical is relational.

Riccardo Manzotti is currently assistant professor in psychology at the IULM University (Milan).  He has a degree in philosophy and in computer science.  In 2001, he got a PhD in Robotics (University of Genoa).  He published several papers and a few books on consciousness, philosophy of mind, artificial intelligence, robotics, and artificial vision.  Currently, he teaches Psychology of Art at his university.  His research is focused on a process foundation for conscious experience.


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