Mind Body Problem

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PHILOSOPHY PH100 Position paper I.D. 20123000

Why is the mind/body problem within Philosophy of Mind and Consciousness studies indeed a problem? Well the mind body problem is a metaphysical issue about the relationship between what is mental and what is physical. ("mind-body problem," 2009). I believe that this issue is and will continue to be a problem until there is enough evidence to fully prove one theory or disprove all but one of these theories from being true. At this point in time I feel that the monistic approach of physicalism best sums up the mind body relationship as it states that everything supervenes on, or is necessitated by, the physical(Stoljar, 2009). To put it in simpler terms relevant to the mind body problem the mind is a physical part of the body. I feel this way as it currently has the most supporting evidence. The other main view on the mind body problem is dualism and its theory of interactionism which holds that mind and body, though separate and distinct substances, causally interact.("interactionism," 2009). It isn’t the numerous theories that cause this mind body problem to be such a problem though it’s the evidence supporting these theories that makes this a highly debated topic as depending on your viewpoint the evidence could support multiple theories at once. This makes deciding what can be classed as evidence for and against different theory’s very difficult.

The term materialism, sometimes called central-state materialism, asserts that states of the mind are identical to states of the human brain("materialism," 2009). Scientific testing has shown that when people are asked to picture doing certain tasks mentally that specific areas of the brain are stimulated. They tested this on numerous people and found that in all of the subjects the mental stimulation caused certain areas of the brain to become active. Two years ago Adrian Owen published an article in...
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