Mind Versus Brain
The mind and the brain are extremely complex matters. It has often been debated whether or not the two can even be considered separate. Some scientists and philosophers believe that the mind and the brain are one, in the sense that the brain controls the mind; however, this idea is quite debatable. It is extremely difficult for us to fully understand the mind versus the brain in terms of their respective functions. “Many aspects of cognition will never be explained through a scientific approach alone (Larson,”Three of a Mind,”pg1, par. 1).”
Many scientists “often take the view that all that is necessary to understand the mind is in the brain (Larson,”Three of a Mind,”pg1, par. 1).” For example, the cerebral cortex¹ of the brain consists of the occipital lobe, parietal lobe, temporal lobe, and frontal lobes. This is where Physical sensation is processed. One philosopher who argues the same is Smart. Smart states, “Although ‘I am in pain does not mean ‘my C-fibers are firing,’ psychological laws ensure that ‘I am in pain’ is true when and only when ‘my C-fibers are firing’ is true (“Philosohpy of the Mind” 381).” Therefore, Smart feels that this cannot be something that is in the mind. According to him, a person is only in pain if his or her brain says so (C-fibers are firing). Another interesting part of the brain is the thalamus², which is where emotions are processed. This is among the most debatable topics regarding “the brain versus the mind”. “Cognitive scientists have defined an emotion, or the basis of an emotion, as a goal along with methods for achieving it (Larson,”Three of a Mind,”pg3, par.1).” People have emotional needs that must be met in order for the body to function properly. For example, chemical processes in the brain tell a person that he or she is hungry. The method for satisfying this hunger would be to eat. Another example of this would be prolonged stress. If extreme changes in a person’s lifestyle are evident, it...
Cited: Larsen, Leif and Rebeca Valerio.Thinkquest.com.2001.
Nagel, Thomas. ”What is it Like to be a Bat?” Philosophical Inquiry. Adler, Jonathan E. and Catherine Z. Elgin. Indianapolis, Indiana: Hackett Publishing Company, Inc., 2007.421.
“Philosophy of Mind.” Philosophical Inquiry. Adler, Jonathan E. and Catherine Z. Elgin. Indianapolis, Indiana: Hackett Publishing Company, Inc., 2007.381.
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