Questions tagged [mind-body]

The mind–body problem is the problem of explaining how our mental states, events and processes—like beliefs, actions and thinking—are related to the physical states,events and processes in our bodies, given that the human body is a physical entity and the mind is non-physical.

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How is it difficult to 'fill out this thought without relying in other ways on other mental states of the subject'?

Source: pp 79-80, Think: A Compelling Introduction to Philosophy (1 ed, 1999) by Simon Blackburn The most popular current approach to this is to concentrate upon the way in which we can attribute ...
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Does higher order conceptual processing present a challenge for Epiphenomenalism?

Epiphenomenalism is the view that physical neural processes have a causal effect on mental states, but that the reverse is not true: Mental states cannot effect neural states and only occur after the ...
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How are subconscious mental states possible?

One of the most important defining mental features of mental states is that they are directly knowable. Indeed this is at the heart of the mind body problem: the mind is so special because mental ...
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Why would God need an independent variation of the world to allow for painless pinpricks?

Source: pp 61-62, Think: A Compelling Introduction to Philosophy (1 ed, 1999) by Simon Blackburn   We can put the issue like this. Imagine God creating the universe. How much does he have to do? ...
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Why do philosophy of mind courses tend to bypass Kant?

All of the philosophy of mind courses I've seen seem to follow a basic pattern: Start with Descartes and substance dualism Jump to the 20th century and discuss behaviorism, functionalism, identity ...
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What is the difference between type identity physicalism and eliminativism?

Type identity physicalism says mental states are identical with brain states. Eliminativism on the other hand states that mental states don't exist at all. Isn't this just a word game? Does it ...
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Am I not a material thing?

I can not doubt that I exist. I can doubt that any material thing exists. Therefore, I am not a material thing This is a redux of Descartes's modal argument for dualism (e.g. in second and sixth ...
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How does mind discovers its own existence?

By mind I mean the observer, the self, something that perceive. I hope that you understand because I can't find the right word. So, your mind can observe the external existence, and can observe its ...
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What is Daniel Dennett's definition of a true believer?

I read that In his writings on the intentional stance, Dennett has often made the controversial further claim that the intentionality of a creature wholly consists in its behavior being well-...
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Could you explain what the dualist, the behaviorist and the identity theorist each would say about what is going on?

Suppose I run into the room screaming and yelling, "I have a horrible toothache!" Could you explain what the dualist, the behaviorist and the identity theorist each would say about what is going on? ...
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How is soul-body hylomorphism different from property dualism?

From the SEP article on soul-body hylomorphism "The soul bears the same relation to the body which the shape of a statue bears to its material basis,", as well as other definitions (e.g. wikipedia), ...
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Is the physicalism/materialism vs dualism debate really just a question of semantics?

Substance dualism is defined as being different from physicalism because it posits 2 different categories of substances in the world as opposed to one category. But throughout the ages, all sorts of ...
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The demarcation problem and the materialism/dualism debate?

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, ...
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Can Empiricism and Ethics be linked via Neuro-Science?

A common idea in Empiricist schools of thought is that ethical questions can never be based on factual data. Consider Hume's "is-ought" problem or the Logical Positivist notion that ethical statements ...
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What is the difference between functionalism and property dualism?

Functionalism and property dualism are both physicalist theories of the mind in that they don't admit any substances other than physical substance. Property dualism holds that mental states are non-...
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Are you familiar with a similar argument against the (nomological) supervenience of the mental on the physical?

The SEP article on supervenience claims "Just about everyone, even a Cartesian dualist, believes some version of this supervenience claim [that the mental nomologically supervenes on the physical]." ...
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Am I a monad? Are we a monad? (Software and hardware)

In Haskell, a programming language, the concept of input/output monad is used to separate (or connect? (bind!)) the running software from its interaction with the hardware. This makes me wonder if it ...
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Does dualism in conjunction with strong AI imply pan-psychism?

Let's assume that at some hypothetical point in the future, we arrive at two results: Based on results like DesCartes or Kripke's, philosophers and logicians arrive at a conclusive proof in favor of ...
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Would rebuilding a human body rebuild the person it was?

I have zero background in philosophy, so forgive me for...asking this in an informal manner. We have a hypothetical scenario. Suppose that our consciousness at some time were reducible to ...
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Does claiming that strong AI is impossible imply a belief in substance dualism?

I was reading an article by J Mark Bishop "The danger of artificial stupidity" on ScientaSalon, where he quotes his own research, John Searle and Hilary Putnam, among others, as proof of the ...
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870 views

Is there a philosophical difference between consciousness and self-consciousness?

I was contemplating Heideggers idea of Being whose Being is a problem. Self-consciousness to me, whilst directly speaks of consciousness that is aware of its own self as a consciousness, also carries ...
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How do non-theistic dualists explain the emergence of the mind?

For a theistic dualist, the moment when the brain is no longer just a lump of living neurons but a conscious mind is the moment their deity of choice puts a soul in the body. For an identity ...
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How does functionalism solve the mind-body problem?

I can see how dualism and physicalism addresses the mind-body problem, but I don't quite get how functionalism attempts to solve the mind-body problem. Functionalism is just the thesis that mental ...
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What does the “mind-body problem” mean?

I'm confused about what the mind-body problem means. On some accounts the mind-body problem is specific to dualism. The dualist has to explain how the mind, a non-extended substance, interacts with ...
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Can the existance of consciousness be proven by refering to it?

First question here. I'm new to Philosophy and I'm wondering if it is a correct thing to say "I can prove my consciousness (to myself) by referring to it"? This came up in my philosophy class. ...
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“How does an immaterial activity (eg thinking a thought) inform a material medium (eg the brain) in which it is manifested?” [closed]

I do not think this question can be answered adequately unless the thinker takes a 'moral realist' (moral reality) position - defined as a reality independent of the Mind. A Thought is an "immaterial ...
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Middle finger and it's curse [closed]

Why do people call/ consider the middle finger the cursing middle finger the cursing? Where did that concept originate from?
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Are human feelings and emotions overrated? [closed]

A human baby is born with very basic feelings like pain and hunger. I am not talking about the five senses, but rather what a baby can feel. As babies grows up, they learn other feelings such as fear, ...
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What is the term for this idea about thought relative to action?

An idea was described to me once, that went something like this: Thoughts give rise to actions. But, given that mental activity involves movement of neurotransmitters, etc. then thought itself is an ...
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Philosophy and Psychology of Emotion

" We are all comfortable using terms to refer to things that seem non-physical objects, such as "Tuesday," "justice," and "luck." These things seem to be able to affect physical things, e.g. "Tuesday" ...
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in light of shaffers analysis, what do you think is the best position for and against dualism and materialism?

on shaffers arguments for and against dualism and materialism, what is the best position? and is there a solution to the mind body problem?
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About models of Human Cognition

Are there any models of Human Cognition that do not require some physicallist concepts? Maybe a model of the Mind-brain system as a self-sustaining self-controlling 'behavioural-algorithm' processing ...
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Regarding the Mind-brain conflict

Some philosopher or scientist made an analogy of Mind versus Brain is related to Software versus Hardware. What was that about? If an A.I. computing system called P.A.L. has a self-sustaining ...
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Regarding freedom of choice

If all Human beings are 'super complicated' neuro-chemical biological machines (with all possible 'brain' activities governed by the laws of physics and chemistry) how can any 'brain' activities even ...
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In Hinduism, what is an astral body? [closed]

As per Hindu philosophy, there are three things - Body, Mind and Soul. Sometimes we come across this term "Astral Body." I read in a book: "When doing meditation, deeply into it, our astral body ...
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Does Cartesian Doubt Depend on Cartesian Dualism?

Even though this isn't exactly accurate, the way I like to think of Descartes' hyperbolic doubt as stating that there's no way to prove that information gained through sensory experience is accurate. ...
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If we would split my brain would there be two of me? [closed]

Considering that I can survive with only half of my brain, and I am a mind living in a body. If we would split my brain in two and then implant one part into some other body and leave other half in my ...
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About a mind / brain analogy regarding computers [closed]

If the Mind is associated with a self-organizing system of software ( like in an A.I. system) and the Brain is associated with the system's hardware then it is assumed by many that the Brain causes ...
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Is soul motion? [closed]

Has any philosopher shown that it is not? Aristotle holds - that the soul is the form, or essence of any living thing. René Descartes holds - that the mind is a nonphysical substance. If we assume ...
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The concept of Objectiveness

Maybe, one of the most fundamental concepts in philosophy is "Objectiveness". Since any question will ultimately depends upon the answer of the question "Is there an objective thing?", and naturally ...
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What speaks for — and against — elimiative physicalism?

In the body-mind-problem, I myself stand on the side of eliminative physicalism. I find this position to be the easiest to argue for: We saw persons changing their minds when their brains changed, ...
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How is physicalism true? [closed]

Assumptions: Human auras exist. There is a subset of the population who are capable of discerning their properties, by whatever means. Machines can not sense human auras. Following these ...
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What area of philosophy deals with that which is outside of the normal (physical) reality (i.e. the “paranormal”)?

I know that several different philosophy currents touch the subject of what we are as humans, what does it mean to be alive, and if we are something transcendent to the mere bodily representation that ...

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