Flashcards in soul, mind and body Deck (54)
what was platos understanding of the soul and body?
He saw them as two separate entities.
what did plato believe the soul had the capacity to do what?
To leave the physical body and move on after death, returning to the world of the forms.
The demands of the body can impede the progress of the soul.
what did plato believe about life after death?
He thought life and death come from each other in an endless chain where souls are reborn.
What view did plato have of the soul?
He had a tripartite view of the soul- that the soul is made of three parts; reason, appetite and emotion.
What analogy did plato use to describe his theory of the soul?
The analogy of two horses pulling a chariot. Reason is the charioteer, guiding and directing the horses of appetite and emotion to stop them running off wildly.
In Meno plato says what?
Plato says that an uneducated person such as slave boy can still work out the answers to geometry and logic problems, because their souls must have encountered ideas before birth in the world of forms.
what was Aristotles ideas about the soul, mind and body?
Aristotle disagreed with plato. He thought the soul was a substance, meaning 'essence' or ' real thing'.
The soul is that which gives a living thing its essence. The capabilities of living things constitute their souls.
Aristotle said the soul is not what?
The soul is not distant from the body. It is the capacities that the body has to do whatever it is mean to do.
The soul gives bodily matter its form, efficiency and telos.
Aristotle gives what analogy?
He gives the analogy of the shape made when soft wax is pressed with a stamp. The shape is inseparable from the wax, as the soul is inseparable from the body
What is substance dualism?
This is the view that the mind and body are two distant substances with two distant sets of properties.q
substance dualism states that the body, mind and soul is what?
The body is a material and has properties of extension (takes up space and has measurements). The mind/ soul is immaterial and has properties of thought and emotion.
What was Rene Descartes view?
He arrived at a substance dualist view through a process of hyperbolic scepticism. He could not be certain he had a body, but he could be certain he had a mind, because he was thinking with it: ' I think, therefore i am'.
If the existence of the body is uncertain but the existence of the mind is certain, then the body and mind cant be the same
Rene Descartes thought the mind and body must be what?
The mind and body must be somehow be attached to each other, perhaps through the pineal gland, but he was hazy about how this worked.
substance dualism allows what ?
Allows possible life after death. The soul or mind could continue after the death of the body, if they are separable.
what is the property of dualism?
This is the view that there is only one kind of substance, which is matter, but that matter can have can have two distinct kinds of properties: physical and mental.
What is Emergent materialism?
This is the view that new properties emerge from physical matter as it becomes more complex, and the mind and body are different but not completely distinct. This is the view of John Stuart Mill.
What is Reductive materialism?
The mind is not distinct from the body but it is identical with it.
Mental states e.g memory, fear and guilt, correspond to different activities in the brain.
chemical reactions are the same thing as mental events, not just caused by them.
Materialism does not allow for life after death. The death of the body necessitates the death of the mind.
What is Gilbert Ryle concept of the mind?
Ryle argues that the mind is not a distinct part of the body but an aspect of the way the body behaves, just as the ' team spirit' is an aspect of the way the cricket team behaves.
Gilbert Ryle said there is no ' Ghost in the machine' what does this mean?
There is no non- physical ' soul' in the matter of the body. Thinking of the mind and body as distinct involves a ' category mistake'.
What is Richard Dawkins, the selfish gene (1976) and river cut out of Eden (1995)?
Dawkins argues that humans are entirely material. They are ' survival machines'.
He rejects the idea that we think of a supernatural soul if we are explaining what it means to be human.
He calls platonic ideas of a supernatural soul ' soul one' and Aristotelian ideas of the soul as the essence of a material being ' soul two'.
What is a criticism of the dualist approaches to the mind- body problem?
Our experience of ourselves does not seem to support the dualist approach. We feel ourselves to be unity, with mental and physical aspects, rather than two very separate substances.
What is another criticism of the dualist approaches to the mind-body problem ?
Dualist approaches cannot explain how the mind and body work together, for example why feeling afraid mentally makes a persons heart rate physically.
What does the ‘problem of other minds’ arise?
How can we be certain that other people have minds, if they are completely separate from the physical bodies we perceive?
The distinction between mental and physical properties is not always clear-cut.
What are the possible criticisms of materialist approaches to the mind- body problem?
- The way we use language suggests that we feel ourselves to be more than just a physical body (although what we feel to be the case does not necessarily make it true).
- Descartes' observation that the mind and the body have different properties and so cannot be the same substance is a valid point.
Materialism cannot explain what?
cannot explain how a chemical reaction can cause consciousness and mental events.
Richard Swinburne and Keith ward argue what?
They argue that losing belief in the soul could have a damaging effect on ethics.
What is meant by the term metaphysics of consciousness?
The mind- body problem is the problem of whether the mind ( or soul) and body are two separate things, or whether the mind ( or soul) is a function of the body and inseparable from it.
Define the soul?
Often, but not always, understood to be the non- physical essence of a person.
awareness or perception