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Flashcards in Soul, mind and body Deck (25)
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Define 'dualism'

The division of something conceptually in two opposed or contrasted aspects (mind and body)


What is the dualist view of the mind and body?

Mind - non-physical, controls and stimulates emotion, opinion and thoughts
Body - including brain matter where physical activity is conducted


What is the view of materialists?

We are nothing more than the existence of our physical body


What is substance dualism?

The name given to the view that the mind and body are separate substances but both exist


Describe the components of substance dualism

Substance (a subject of various properties) and properties (cannot exist on their own) e.g. there is no such thing as 'soft' except something which is soft


What do substance dualists believe about the mind and body?

The mind is the substance with thoughts, intentions and emotions as properties and the body is a substance, its property is extension, somehow the mind and body are attached to make a human being


What did S, P and A (SPA) believe?

We have a non physical essence capable without a physical body , when we have brain damage from physical trauma our mental strength is compromised


Aristotle: the soul is a (1) which remains the same during life despite (2). The soul is a (3) cause and "The (4) of animal life"

1 - substance
2 - physical changes
3 - formal
4 - principle


What did Aristotle believe are the different kinds of soul?

Nutritive: plants to grow and flourish
Perceptive: animals, sense and react to stimuli
Higher: humans can reason


Aristotle: the soul is not separate, it is the (1) of the body and gives the matter its (2), souls distinguish (3)

1 - capabilities
2 - form, efficiency and telos
3 - what's living and what isn't


How did Aristotle describe how souls could distinguish what is living and what is not?

Used inanimate objects as examples, an axe with a soul has the capability to chop which wouldn't be possible without the matter of an axe as the soul cannot survive without the body even after death


Describe Plato's belief of the soul

- Mind and body are two separate entities
- Soul is immortal so can remove itself from the body in the form of good
- Qualities depend on their opposites e.g. something is big because what it is compared to is small
- Our intuitions are evidence of knowledge attained from birth and shows we are part of the realm of forms


Describe property dualism

There is only one kind of material, physical substance but there are two kinds of properties (mental and physical) which has size, shape and mass but also opinions, emotions and memories


Describe emergent materialism

(type of property dualism) Physical things become more complex so new properties emerge from them which cannot be reduced simply to the material so the mind is in its own existence but is not completely separate from the physical body


Who supports emergent materialism?

John Stuart Mill


Describe reductive materialism

(a.k.a. identity theory) the mind is not distinct from the physical brain, it is identical to it. Mental states can be classified into different types e.g. memory, pain and desire. When chemical reactions happen in the brain we feel an emotion/ make a decision/ remember a fact depending on the type of mental event. No life after death.


Edwin Boring: mental and physical events in the brain are (1), chemical reactions do not cause mental events but (2)

1 - identical with feelings
2 - are the mental events


Why did Descartes pursue philosophy?

His mathematical expertise made him want philosophy to have equal precision, he believed all human knowledge has the scope to be interconnected though he was privately sceptical of religion


Describe Descartes views

- Our world operates the same in its construction and laws of physics as any other universe
- Clear distinction between soul and body
- Couldn't trust sense experience
- Rejected mathematical principles as we could be mistaken or God could be deceitful


"(1)" to prove he couldn't doubt existence as he had capability to (2). He was certain he had a mind but not a (3) because the mind is peculiar but (4)

1 - I think therefore I am
2 - think
3 - body
4 - the body depends on the mind so could be a deception


What does Descartes believe connects the soul and the body?

The pineal gland in the brain is filled with animal spirits and controls movement and imagination


Why did Gilbert Ryle criticise the view that the mind and body are distinctive?

Team spirit cannot be seen as a matter but exists the same as the mind so the mind and body are functions of a person but not separate


What does Richard Dawkins believe?

No part of a person is not physical, there is no life after death because consciousness dies with the body, humans are chemicals and genes to survive


How did Dawkins describe the ways of understanding the soul?

Soul one: viewpoint of distinctive separation and knowing God with the afterlife
Soul two: personality and individuality (Dawkins)


Give a quote from Aristotle

"To attain any assured knowledge of the soul is one of the most difficult things in the world"