Life Transcends Computing

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Department of Physics


This paper suggests that there are facts of a fundamentally different kind to be discovered, namely, natural processes that are simultaneously partly physical and partly nonphysical, processes that I call transrobotic. At some point in evolution, life produced a mental world that is beyond computation. Organisms became more than robots. Transrobotic mentality offered an external means of altering some of the otherwise deterministic or probabilistic physical processes taking place within the organism’s body. Long before the emergence of consciousness, transrobotic mentality developed a genuine independence from the physical processes that it partially controls.

The conscious human self is much more than robotic brain activity. Theories of this kind are often thought to be ruled out because they violate conservation, but local violations are to be expected where and when nonphysical mentality interacts with the physical organism.

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© 2021 Institute for Cognitive Science, Seoul National University

Publisher's version of record can be accessed here: http://jcs.snu.ac.kr/jcs/index.php/issues/?uid=319&mod=document

Publication Title

Journal of Cognitive Science