By Norton Nelkin
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Additional resources for Consciousness and the Origins of Thought
Surely such a criterion is inadequate, both in principle and in practice. The "ears" of eared owls, for instance, are not ears at all. They just look like ears. Perhaps there is a way around this objection that does not involve redescribing the criterion - for instance, in terms of how the organs are structured — but the motivation behind this objection also underlies the second objection. So let us turn to it. (2) An organ can be stimulated and yet sensing be absent. For instance, some blindness is the result of cortical damage.
Perhaps it is yet more telling that the "reflectance property" reply itself fails to solve any problems: reflectance properties can also affect how we feel, as anyone who has felt the heat of the sun knows. So this reply misses the mark. 2. A second possibility for the desired criterion is that we divide perception into the senses because different parts of the body are differentially affected. Because we separate out the eyes from the ears as sense organs, we distinguish seeing from hearing. Because we conceive of the skin surface and underlying flesh as a single organ, we say we feel heat, texture, hardness, and motion.
8. The third account simply combines the first two accounts. The phenomenon/organ 16 correlation reinforces and is reinforced by the judgment/organ correlation. For instance, our judgment that a certain color is before us is correlated with our believing that our eyes are open and that we would not have made this judgment if they were not; and these judgments, in turn, correlate with given kinds of phenomena that occur most often in just these situations. 9. So which of the three accounts correctly explains how we originate our conceiving of five senses?