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Relationship between mind and body.docx

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Department
Philosophy
Course
PHIL 100W
Professor
Dc Mc
Semester
Fall

Description
Relationship between mind and body - At the end of Meditation 2, Descartes is certain only that there is at least one thinking thing, which is himself. - By thinking he means conscious mental goings-on. - He’s not sure whether there are any other thinking things. Because he has no access to their minds. - How do you know that there’s anything it’s like to be you? - What if it’s all dark inside for everybody else? - Philosophical zombie: look completely normal; no conscious activity - Sentience: Capacity to have conscious experiences and have feelings or sensations. - Descartes, at the end of Meditation 2, is also not sure about the existence of any material things, even his own body. - Mind and Body (matter) are distinct for Descartes – they have different essences. Wax example - What’s the point of Descartes’ wax example? Not acquired or innate. Reason lead him to understand that it’s still the same piece of wax. Changes in how the wax appears to us do not make us think it’s not still wax. The appearance of the wax is not essential to it. - Descartes was a rationalist. Thought that reason is the primary source of knowledge. - Contrasted with Empiricism: Sensory experience is the primary source of knowledge. - The essential properties of material things are not their sensible ones. - Sensible (secondary qualities): properties that we can access through the senses. Ones that involve a perceiver. Ex: colour, odor and taste… - Primary qualities: ones that do not involve a perceiver. Size, shape, mass…Don’t require a perceiver. - The smell, feel, appearance, etc. of the wax are, for Descartes, all accidental properties. - It is not essential to a piece of wax that it say, look clear. - It is not even essential to it that it has a particular shape. - But it must have some shape or other: It must be extended. Some problems for Descartes - Some of his alleged foundational beliefs are not foundational. - Is the cogito? I think, therefore I am. - Why think there is a unitary self-doing the thinking? - God exists. (Some
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