- Presumably the end game of dualist philosophers is to definitively prove the existence of ontologically separate mental states which cannot be reduced to brain states. If they succeed in doing so, then we would be able to make testable and falsifiable statements about mental states.
- When materialists (physicalists) speak of matter in the context of the mind-body problem, they don't mean matter per se, as understood in physics. Materialist already accept theories which have multiple categories of basic substances (matter, energy, electricity, force, genes, etc...). In the context of the mind-body problem, what materialists mean by matter is anything that can be explained by empirical sciences.
But then, if dualists do achieve their goal, whatever proofs they provide regarding mental states will allow them to provide empirical theories with predictive explanatory power w/r to these mental states, and then these theories would become part of the empirical sciences, and hence part of the materialist world view.
As an example, if David Chalmers' theory of sensation being a fundamental quantity/variable in nature (as a way of explaining qualia) is true, then that would just mean there was a paradigm shift in physics, and any theory about the mind substance would be part of a physicalist world view. Dualism would also become indistinguishable from functionalism and none reductive materialism.
- How could dualists definitively prove the ontological uniqueness of mental states without these states becoming part of the domain of empirical sciences?
- Can Dualism ever be distinguished from none reductive materialism?