Thursday, October 16, 2014

More trying to get to grips with Philosophy - The Mind Body problem

Background

I was somewhat ambiguous about the anticipated effect of the London educators strike - what in fact happened was that the 'action' was declared illegal (by the courts) and cancelled (by the union).
On London's Southbank - well  It looks red to me.
On a selfish point of view I was really pleased as I enjoy the sessions and did not think that a lecturer -less session would produce much in the way of greater understanding of the subject, but as a former active Trade Union member (of the TV technicians union  ACTT) I was reminded how much things have changed since I was active (1980's and 90's)

The Session


We spent some time reviewing the previous session which had been around the question of 'Other Minds'.
But the topic that we focused on this Tuesday was 'The Mind Body problem' and goodness me it's another challenging theme to look at.

We were introduced to the ideas of:

Physicalism - all that there is is the Physical world and everything has a physical explanation -

Here's Patricia Churchland saying pretty much this.

And here's a somewhat scruffy looking Australian Professor called David Chalmers giving another view (very well),.

Dualism-  This idea has in essence a split between the brain and the mind  (Cartesian Dualism) is a form of this.

Aspect Dualism -which puts forward the idea (I think) of a single entity looked at in different ways -it seems Baruch Spinoiza might be classified as a supporter of  Aspect Dualism

and a phrase I hope to use in conversation Eliminative Materialism - this is a radical (some might say far out) view that our common sense of the mind is wrong  and what we take for granted does not exist.


The Mary Argument


Another aspect which brings the question to life is The Mary Problem  this is a 'thought experiment' about  someone who has spent years researching colour knows all about it (theory etcetera) although unable to perceive it and then suddenly can see it.

Here's a video that covers the Mary Argument.


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