"Mipham and Williams...take it for granted that the mind is self-revealing; that we know our own minds in a special, direct way; that we cannot be in error about the nature of our own minds or cognitive activity. While this might be common sense, it is all wrong, and Tsong khapa’s great genius is that he saw this and so saw the importance of this issue. If we were to have immediate, veridical knowledge of our own minds, that would amount to having, in Tsong khapa’s terms, a Buddha’s access to the mind; in more familiar terms, to having direct, non-concept- or theory-dependent access to our own cognitive processes. If we were to have a special kind of access to our own mental processes and were to know others’ indirectly, this would be to abandon the publicity and conventional character of the concepts through which we know ourselves, and hence to saddle ourselves with an insuperable problem of other minds, and an insuperable problem about how we ever develop those concepts in the first place. If we were always to be correct about our own cognitive activities, in Tsong khapa’s terms, meditation and cultivation would be pointless; in our own, cognitive science would be complete."
Now that you all had the benefit of Garfield's visit to our seminar and of his lively exposition of the scope of his paper (and the nature of the controversy) what do you make of his stance on the nature of awareness/consciousness?