renee descartes, 1596-1650 the ghost in the machine cogito ergo sum
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Renee Descartes, 1596-1650
Renee Descartes, 1596-1650The Ghost in the MachineCogito ergo sumHow else do we explain the mystery of consciousness?
If I have a thought about a dog, I cant pull that thought out of my head and measure it.
20th Century Materialism and Philosophy of MindIn 1925, C.D. Broad published The Mind and Its Place in Nature.This is emergent materialism based on C. Lloyd Morgans idea that the mind is a qualitative novelty. It is a sum different from the parts that constitute it.The mind produces something more than an organ produces, more than is found in nature.D.C. Broad believed in the paranormal and psychical research as part of emergent phenomena
Philosophical Questions Broad Said Were Posed by Psychical Research:Backward causation from the past you can predict the future. What if youre psychic?Telekinesis If the mind can move objects this refutes dualism. The mind and physical things can interact.If minds can communicate with each other literal mindreading this indicates something else about the nature of mind.
More Philosophical QuestionsWe use reason and empirical evidence to establish knowledge, but there is a question of a different way of knowing through psychic insight.If ghosts exist, then there can be persons without physical existence. This opens another set of questions.
What is belief in ghosts?
Ghosts as a metaphor in emergentismThe idea of ghosts can help provide us with an image of what is being proposed in emergentism. Since emergentism does not believe in mere ghosts, they say spirits dont exist, but emergent properties do.As J. Kim explains it, Property emergence is when aggregates of material particles attain an appropriate level of structural complexity (relatedness) genuinely novel properties emerge to characterize the structured systems.Kim, J. (1998). Philosophy of Mind. Boulder: Westview Press, pp. 226-27.9Emergentism as Non-Reductive PhysicalismSo, emergentism stays within materialistic conceptions of mind but is non-reductive.What does non-reductive mean? It means that everything we know as symbolized by X is not enough to explain (Y,Z, T).There are 2 types of emergence in this kind of non-reductive physicalismResultant and Irreducible EmergenceResultant emergence would be something like if you say X is not equal to (Y,Z,U) but if you add Y and Z and U, it does result in lets say 2X. It is additive or subtractive, and can result in something we havent seen before, but it isnt novel.Irreducible emergence, on the other hand, is something entirely new. Emergent properties are irreducible to, and unpredictable from, the lower-level phenomena from which they emerge.(Kim, 228)Kim, J. (1998) Philosophy of Mind.11Irreducible Yet Emergent: The Transparency of Water and H2O
From the 1920s to the 1960s: Identity TheoryIn 1949 the publication of Gilbert Ryles The Concept of the Mind arrived, which attacked any idea of mind-body Cartesian dualism.Ryles claimed that the dualism was false either there are minds or bodies, but not both. This is a move towards mind-brain reductionism.Incidentally, 1949 was also the year that Antonio Moniz won the Nobel for prefrontal lobotomy.What are the consequences of a theory of mind-brain reductionism?
Herman Munster, Antonio Moniz, Jack Nicholson in the 1975 One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest (1975) playing the soon to be lobotomized Mac McMurphy, and Gilbert Ryles14Identity Theorists from Down UnderThe United Australian Front for Sophisticated Materialism (as they called themselves in jest) included JJ Smart and David Armstrong identity theorists who asserted a reductive physicalism in the 1960s.
David Armstrong and JJ Smart: Identity Theorists
Identity: Identification of 1 PhenomenonTo identify an event in the brain with an event in mental phenomena, identity theorists made the claim that the two are identical (have the same identity), but we know them differently.
Kim, p. 5217C-Fiber Activation and PainC-Fiber
C-fibers are found in the nerves of the somatic sensory system. The SoNS consists of efferent nerves responsible for stimulating muscle contraction, including all the non-sensory neurons connected with skeletal muscles and skin.18Armstrongs Argument whoops wrong Armstrong! Thats not the right identity.
Armstrongs ArgumentArmstrong offers that psychoneural identity is like the identification of DNA. Scientists were looking for the causal agent in the transmission of inherited characteristics in organisms. (Kim) The DNA molecule fit this role.Armstrong says it is the same with c-fibers and pain. The activation of C-fibers is the causative agent in pain.
Kim, J. page 5520Theoretical Identities in ScienceMorning Star is the Evening Star. They are identical, but we learn this through observation.H2O is water.Heat is molecular motion.The HIV virus causes AIDS.Creating an identity-knowledge and being able to establish identity is critical in science.Different Meanings of IdentityPredication: Helen is 12 years old.
Definition: Larry is a bachelor.
Composition: This table is an old packing case.T.S. 11/522Why is Identity Important?Even though these identities are not sufficient to tell us everything about Helen, Larry, the table or the packing case, identification is useful.The fact that Helen is 12 might be important information in deciding whether Helen should get a flu shot or go walk by herself to the mall, for example.Arguments for the Advantage of Psycho-neural IdentificationEverywhere in nature we see increasing complexity, but in the brain, we can simplify if we can say X is the SAME as Y and reduce the number of phenomena from 2 to 1.Linguistic simplicity: Mentalistic language of aches and pain could be replaced with their neural correlates.Kim, J. page 5324Psychoneural Identity Sleight of HandIf I identify c-fibers with pain, I get rid of a causal law and replace it with identity.This means I am not saying c-fiber activation causes pain, I am saying c-fiber activation is pain.As Kim explains it, By interpreting psychoneural correlations as identities, the identity theory gets rid of them as laws(54)PhysicalismIn order to make it clear how these neural events are correlated with their expressions in physical attributes, it is important to break the concept down even further.To say all mental events have a physical correlate, is also called physicalism. Within physicalism there are two ways of looking at identity theory type and token physicalism.http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/physicalism/#6
26Token PhysicalismThis is non-reductive physicalism, also called minimal physicalism. Every event that falls under a mental-event kind also falls under a physical event kind. (Kim, 59)Token physicalism does not require a strict correlation between mental and physical, however. (61)Kim, J. Philosophy of Mind.27Token PhysicalismFor token physicalism,the specific example but not the type might exist. If see a car but have no conceptual category for it, it still exists as a token but not a token of a type.The token is the particular example of the type. So, the type is the general category and the token is the specific example. So of course the token might not have a type.
Some theorists accuse token identity of being a kind of property dualism.
http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://images2.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20060310225158/lotr/images/b/ba/Smeagol_5.jpg&imgrefurl=http://lotr.wikia.com/wiki/Gollum&h=383&w=572&sz=28&tbnid=YyhcY-nM8RUmkM:&tbnh=90&tbnw=134&zoom=1&usg=__NQxR1Bgjq0xrpL6vPjSpKrRG8w0=&docid=SM0Qy_NZAaOr_M&sa=X&ei=CHR-UruuIKOziwKr_YDgAw&ved=0CFkQ9QEwBA29Token Identity TheoryDonald Davidson: So, the mental event just is the corresponding physical event. It really is the supervenience of the mental over the physical.
http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/physicalism/#630Type physicalism: All Rings
We have rings.Rings are of a type. Type in other words means the concept or category of the thing.
Type-Type Identity TheoryAll mental event types are physical event types. There are no mental events without a physical correlate. So, the example of pain being C-fiber activation is a type-type identity theory (Kim p. 60).The term type-type means mental and physical are both physicalist types.Type-Type TaxonomyIf you are going to argue that everything has a physicalist basis, Cynthia MacDonald asks, How are events or properties to be taxonomized as mental or physical?You still have to establish one taxonomy for mental and one for physical, and then look at correlations.What is Taxonomy?
Mental TaxonomyWhat do we consider mental events?Infallibly knowable and lacking spatial dimension?Does that mean that any physical event cannot be infallibly knowable and lack spatial dimension?Can we say that any mental phenomenon is one that contains the words believes and desires? Then is it true any event could be a mental event?Physical TaxonomyWhat are physical events? Do they need to be events without any mental phenomenon associated with them?Are they made out of material and have a spatiotemporal dimension?How do they exist without having been the product, observation, by a mental event?Kinds of Mental Events?Mental events are also not all of the same kind.There are sensations feeling events like pains, tingles, itches, auditory, tactile feelings, and color perceptions.There are propositions: I know that the earth is round. The that clause that the earth is round implies knowledge of something other than the knower.Type-Type Identity: JJ SmartStrict identity thesis, which is Leibnitzs Principle of the Indiscernibility of Identicals.This means x = y in all discernible ways.Since Smart knew the problem of making any two things one identical phenomenon, he moved to identical events shaving off pa