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Philosophy of mind

Philosophy of mind
A phrenological mapping[1] of the brain – phrenology was among the first attempts to correlate mental functions with specific parts of the brain Philosophy of mind is a branch of philosophy that studies the nature of the mind, mental events, mental functions, mental properties, consciousness, and their relationship to the physical body, particularly the brain. The mind–body problem, i.e. the relationship of the mind to the body, is commonly seen as one key issue in philosophy of mind, although there are other issues concerning the nature of the mind that do not involve its relation to the physical body, such as how consciousness is possible and the nature of particular mental states.[2][3][4] Mind–body problem[edit] Our perceptual experiences depend on stimuli that arrive at our various sensory organs from the external world, and these stimuli cause changes in our mental states, ultimately causing us to feel a sensation, which may be pleasant or unpleasant. Arguments for dualism[edit]

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Reductionism Descartes held that non-human animals could be reductively explained as automata — De homine, 1662. Reductionism strongly reflects a certain perspective on causality. In a reductionist framework, the phenomena that can be explained completely in terms of relations between other more fundamental phenomena, are called epiphenomena. Often there is an implication that the epiphenomenon exerts no causal agency on the fundamental phenomena that explain it. Philosophical teaching will get students thinking for themselves again Education would be more successful, and more enjoyable, if less time was spent teaching to the test and more time was spent teaching students to think for themselves. I'm not alone in believing this. In a recent Cambridge Assessment Research Survey, 87% of lecturers said that too much teaching to the test is a major factor contributing to students being under-prepared for degree-level study. With such widespread agreement about this, you would think that the issue of how assessment pressure is distorting teaching would be at the centre of the debate about A-level reform. Instead, the discussion so far has focused on assessment structure (modular versus linear) and standards (bringing in HE to restore rigour and counter 'grade inflation'). But if real teaching has given way to a process of training students to jump through assessment hoops, HE concerns aren't going to be met simply by reducing the number of hoops, or by lifting them higher.

Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television (1978) is a book by Jerry Mander, who argues that many of the problems with television are inherent in the medium and technology itself, and thus cannot be reformed. Mander spent 15 years in the advertising business, including five as president and partner of Freeman, Mander & Gossage, San Francisco, a nationally-known advertising agency.[1] Summary[edit] Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television argues that the technology of television is not a neutral or benign instrument or tool. The author argues that in varied technologies and institutions such as militaries, automobiles, nuclear power plants, mass production, and advertising, the basic form of the institution and the technology determines its interaction with the world, the way it will be used, the kind of people who use it, and to what ends.

Dream argument The dream argument is the postulation that the act of dreaming provides preliminary evidence that the senses we trust to distinguish reality from illusion should not be fully trusted, and therefore any state that is dependent on our senses should at the very least be carefully examined and rigorously tested to determine whether it is in fact reality. Synopsis[edit] In Eastern philosophy and especially Chinese philosophy, this type of argument is well known as "Zhuangzi dreamed he was a butterfly" (莊周夢蝶 Zhuāngzhōu mèng dié): One night, Zhuangzi (369 BC) dreamed that he was a carefree butterfly, flying happily. After he woke up, he wondered how he could determine whether he was Zhuangzi who had just finished dreaming he was a butterfly, or a butterfly who had just started dreaming he was Zhuangzi.

Metaphilosophy Relationship to philosophy[edit] Some philosophers consider metaphilosophy to be a subject apart from philosophy, above or beyond it,[4] while others object to that idea.[5] Timothy Williamson argues that the philosophy of philosophy is "automatically part of philosophy," as is the philosophy of anything else.[6] Nicholas Bunnin and Jiyuan Yu write that the separation of first- from second-order study has lost popularity as philosophers find it hard to observe the distinction.[8] As evidenced by these contrasting opinions, debate remains as to whether the evaluation of the nature of philosophy is 'second order philosophy' or simply 'plain philosophy'. Many philosophers have expressed doubts over the value of metaphilosophy.[9] Among them is Gilbert Ryle : "preoccupation with questions about methods tends to distract us from prosecuting the methods themselves. We run as a rule, worse, not better, if we think a lot about our feet. So let us... not speak of it all but just do it

A New Kind of Science A New Kind of Science is a best-selling,[1] controversial book by Stephen Wolfram, published in 2002. It contains an empirical and systematic study of computational systems such as cellular automata. Wolfram calls these systems simple programs and argues that the scientific philosophy and methods appropriate for the study of simple programs are relevant to other fields of science. Visualizing the History of Philosophy as a social network: The Problem with Hegel Introduction This is Part I of a series. Part II is available here, and has an updated graphic. How Important is Hegel?!

Integral theory consciousness Ken Wilber Journal of Consciousness Studies, 4 (1), February 1997, pp. 71-92 Copyright, 1997, Imprint Academic Abstract: An extensive data search among various types of developmental and evolutionary sequences yielded a `four quadrant' model of consciousness and its development (the four quadrants being intentional, behavioural, cultural, and social). Cosmologist Lawrence Krauss: Religion could be largely gone in a generation Cosmologist Lawrence Krauss believes that in a generation religion could disappear. Earlier this year the theoretical physicist, who teamed up with Richard Dawkins to create the documentary “The Unbelievers,” spoke at the Victorian Skeptics Cafe. There he was asked what he thought about religion being taught in schools; the video of the response was uploaded on Monday to YouTube by user Adam Ford. “What we need to do is present comparative religion as a bunch of interesting historical anecdotes, and show the silly reasons why they did what they did,” Krauss said on the topic of teaching comparative religion. “People say, ‘Well, religion has been around since the dawn of man.

Aesthetic relativism Aesthetic relativism is the philosophical view that the judgement of beauty is relative to different individuals and/or cultures and that there are no universal criteria of beauty. For example, in historical terms, the female form as depicted in the Venus of Willendorf and the women in the paintings of Rubens would today be regarded as over-weight, while the slim models on the covers of contemporary fashion magazines would no doubt be regarded in a negative light by our predecessors. In contemporary (cross-cultural) terms, body modification among "primitive" peoples is sometimes regarded as grotesque by Western society. Aesthetic relativism might be regarded as a sub-set of an overall philosophical relativism, which denies any absolute standards of truth or morality as well as of aesthetic judgement. (A frequently-cited source for philosophical relativism in postmodern theory is a fragment by Nietzsche, entitled "On Truth and Lie in an Extra-Moral Sense.")

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