The Mind-Body Problem (The MIT Press Essential Knowledge series)

The Mind-Body Problem (The MIT Press Essential Knowledge series)❮Read❯ ➮ The Mind-Body Problem (The MIT Press Essential Knowledge series) ➲ Author Jonathan Westphal – Philosophers from Descartes to Kripke have struggled with the glittering prize of modern and contemporary philosophy the mind body problem The brain is physical If the mind is physical we cannot see h Philosophers from Descartes to Kripke have struggled with the glittering prize of modern and contemporary philosophy the mind body problem The The Mind-Body MOBI :¼ brain is physical If the mind is physical we cannot see how If we cannot see how the mind is physical we cannot see how it can interact with the body And if the mind is not physical it cannot interact with the body Or so it seems In this audiobook the philosopher Jonathan Westphal examines the mind body problem in detail laying out the reasoning behind the solutions that have been offered in the past and presenting his own proposal The sharp focus on the mind body problem a problem that is not about the self or consciousness or the soul or anything other than the mind and the body helps clarify both problem and solutions Westphal outlines the history of the mind body problem beginning with Descartes He describes mind body dualism which claims that the mind and the body are two different and separate things nonphysical and physical and he also examines physicalist theories of mind; antimaterialism which proposes limits to physicalism and introduces the idea of ualia; and scientific theories of consciousness Finally Westphal examines the largely forgotten neutral monist theories of mind and body held by Ernst Mach William James and Bertrand Russell which attempt neither to extract mind from matter nor to dissolve matter into mind Westphal proposes his own version of neutral monism This version is uniue among neutral monist theories in offering an account of mind body interaction. This is the first book I have read on this subject that attempts to organize all the philosophical and scientific work that has been done on the topic of mind body problem and the associated topic of consciousness in a systematic way It does a wonderful job of first establishing a framework and then viewing each approach through history in terms of this common framework thus making it possible for us to comprehend the similarities and differences between the different modelsMy only disappointment is about something I have seen with many other philosophers working in this area They all have a tendency to believe that consciousness necessarily needs a human brain and any claim that a non biological entity can be conscious is dismissed without any further consideration The author here makes statements like since something is a stream of bits it cannot be conscious as if this statement should be self evident There is also a lack of deep understanding or appreciation of the emergent processes in complex and recursive systems which may hold the key to understanding consciousness and may create conscious machines in the not too distant future My knowledge of philosophy is barely enough to understand this book but it is not enough to argue this point in philosophical language but I'd love to follow that argument Excellent overview but sub optimal productionWestphal's explication of the mind body problem is as serviceable an overview as I've yet experienced and I've read a lot The only thing better would be a proper university lecture series I especially appreciated the syllogistic reductions in key chapters which helped to keep the focus on the core paradox If you're looking for a detailed exploration of the scientific theories of consciousness this book is not for you You might try Dennett instead Where the book and the audio fall down is in the production uality The reading is peppered with odd pause points presumably due to re read edits and inconsistent pronunciations At one point he pronounces uale as uail and at another as ua lay the right way for example In the text there are lots of misspellings and there was no attempt to reformat the typesetting for digital So where in the print edition you'd get large print insets of important pull uotes what you get in the digital edition is whole blocks of repeated text that looks like the rest of the text That's very confusing for a reader Overall I'd still give this an above average rating for an introductory volume I'm not so sure I would recommend this book to a non philosophy studentOn the one hand it's a fairly good summation of the attempts to resolve the problem dating back to Descartes; on the other it is important to be able to appreciate the rigidity of some of the rules of logic to appreciate the cases Westphal makes here No prior knowledge on the structure of logical or theoretical arguments won't make this easyI was left a bit disappointed that all he does is present most of the major theories going in excruciating explanations on them sometimes but failed to dive deeper into the actual IMPLICATIONS that these theories pose I would love to have seen theoretical playfulness on ideas of how they might function or how concepts like Free Will God or Consciousness would be shaped by some of the ideas presented I haven't expected the rigid lexicon of accepted theories that I got and was wishing philosophical meanderings and hearing Wesphal's own take on the subjects which would be so much interesting to read The uestion posted in this book is obviously an interesting one with very long historyThe author did an amazing job in summarizing how philosophers and scientists trying to solve this problem via different field Getting a grasp of those theories is interesting mental exercise Some are logically coherent but that all one can say about that theory I am personally biased towards using consciousness to explain the mind body problem due to my neuroscience background I also held this unproven belief that one day the neuroscience will advance in a way that we can understand those subjective experiences feelings motivations Yet somehow this progress would frighten me and it is like to lose the last tiny bits of privacy During the scientific revolution the mind was conveniently understood as whatever is left over from the successful mathematical sciences pg146 It was a decent introduction to the mind body problem I don’t think it spent enough time going over the various physicalist arguments that dominate the modern discussion but it touched on everything enough to be a pretty into introduction It does take a thoroughly philosophical take on the problem the author briefly touches on various scientific discoveries but doesn’t seem to dive into the specificsAt the end the author provides his opinion which is that of a neutral monist but still fails to provide a believable enough argument against physicalist modes of thought Highly recommended if it’s your first introduction to the mind body problem but don’t expect it to get very specific or scientific Use it as a frame for the problem with a decent but not complete set of historical “solutions” I have to be honest this book was hard to get through I don't know if it's just that I found the topic uninteresting or the book itself but I found it a chore to finish It was hard to keep everything straight throughout reading because multiple ideas are presented in a single sub heading on each chapter and the author writes in a way that makes them meld together a bitI personally didn't enjoy this book but I will admit it does have a lot of good information in it I just wish it were presented in a coherent way Very exhaustive analysis of all possible mindbody theories and explanations to the problem of consciousnessprobably all you ever wanted to know about the subject This is an excellent brief primer on the mind body problem Good explanations of the most relevant positions If this is intended as a summary of general thinking on the mind body problem I don't think it does a particularly good job It is meandering and feels skin deep where you want it to be substantive and needlessly deep when you only care for surface history I'm not certain I would recommend The Mind Body Problem to a non philosophy student On the one hand it's a fairly good summation of the attempts to resolve the problem dating back to Descartes; on the other it is important to be able to appreciate the rigidity of some of the rules of logic to appreciate the cases Westphal makes hereThe book begins with a very simple summation of what the mind body problem is It is as Westphal argues an easy proof to understand the mind is a nonphysicial thing the body is a physical thing the mind and the body interact physical things and nonphysical things cannot interact Each of these premises makes sense to us on its own but taken together they cannot be true Looking at the four premises it's also easy to try to begin picking the problem apart perhaps the mind is a physical thing perhaps the mind and the body do not really interact and Westphal covers some of the philosophical attempts to tease out these rejections of the premises For the most part however these attempts fall well short of the markI particularly enjoyed Westphal's various dissections of physicalist approaches to the mind body problem The vestiges of the physicalist view have hardly been swept away ask ten people to resolve the mind body problem and nine will likely tell you well the mind is the brain the firing of electrons but physicalism has significant limitations Westphal spends a significant amount of time discussing ualia or a philosophical concept for the experience we attach to an event He uses the example of perceiving a cup of coffee to explain how our understanding of events or items transcends mere perception of colors or sounds The shortcoming of the physicalist view particularly the behaviorist view which says that the 'mind' can essentially be reduced to behavior is that it fails to account for the sorts of syntheses and interpretations that occur on a nonphysical planeIn all feel free to dive into this My one word of advice for the non philosophy student trying something new don't get as hung up on the isms as the various arguments to resolve the problem

The Mind-Body Problem PDF/EPUB ô The Mind-Body  MOBI
  • Audiobook
  • The Mind-Body Problem (The MIT Press Essential Knowledge series)
  • Jonathan Westphal
  • 03 June 2016
  • 9781469065465