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Saturday, 28 May 2016

Philosophy of mind SYNTHESISED

Key points throughout philosophy of mind
- Cartesian Dualism
Descartes' view that the mind is ontologically distinct from the body

Argument that the mind is res cogitans and the body is res extensa

It is autonomously found and certain for Descartes that…

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Saturday, 28 May 2016
Princess Elisabeth of Bohemia in her correspondence with Descartes expresses the problem in terms
of the need for some contact between the two substances in order for the mind to affect the body.
Since the mind has no extended surface it is unable to touch the…

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Saturday, 28 May 2016
1. If I can clearly and distinctly conceive of the essential natures of two things separately, it might just be
possible to separate them
2. I clearly and distinctly perceive myself to be essentially a thinking unextended thing (my mind)

3. I clearly and distinctly perceive…

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Saturday, 28 May 2016
3. But we can conceive of a world which is physically identical to this one but in which there is no
conscious experience (on other words, such a world is metaphysically possible)
4. Therefore physicalism is false

Dennett: A zombie world is not conceivable. Chalmers…

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Saturday, 28 May 2016
The argument begins with a thought experiment about a brilliant neuroscientist named Mary. Mary, we
are asked to suppose, has been confined in a black and white room her entire life, having only been
able to access the world via a black and white television screen…

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Saturday, 28 May 2016
Patricia Churchland; "How can I assess what Mary will know and understand if she knows everything
there is to know about the brain? Everything is a lot, and it means in all likelihood that Mary has a
radically deeper and different understanding of the brain that…

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Saturday, 28 May 2016
Qualia seems to present an explanatory gap between physical facts and subjective feel of our
phenomenal experiences
But if qualia could be shown not to exist, this would provide the physicalist with a powerful counter to
the knowledge argument, however this is difficult, for there seems…

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- Parallelist Theories: theories of mind that deny a direct causal interaction
between mind and body. Instead the two are coordinated, usually by the
involvement of God

- Occasionalism
One reaction to the problem of mental causation that substance dualists may pursue is to accept that…

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Saturday, 28 May 2016
However, if mental properties are irreducible, but at the same time physical causes alone are needed
to explain behaviour, then we are led to the view that the mind is a product of the brain, but one which
can have no causal influence on the body…

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Saturday, 28 May 2016
The role of qualia: epiphenomenalism is absurd to neglect the role of qualia, that there is definitely an
intrinsic unpleasantness to pain that we are conscious of:
However, Huxley responds with a cowboy movie analogy, that it is merely illusory when someone is
punched in a…




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