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Chapter 19

PHLA10H3 Chapter Notes - Chapter 19: Mental Property, Lady Gaga

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William Seager

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Dualism and the Mind/Body Problem:
Essentially the Mind/Body problem questions whether or not the mind and the body are
the same thing
Cartesian Dualism = the idea that there are two kinds of objects in the world; Physical objects
and Mental objects
Descartes accepted that there are causal interactions between the two, but maintained
that they were separate entities
The Mind/Brain Identity Theory = theory that states that your mind and brain are the same
object, and that mental properties that you have are actually physical properties.
The identity theory claims that mental/physical terminology explain the same thing in the
world, eventually we will be more concise in understanding exactly what the mind is, and
we will account for it in a purely materialistic way
NOTE: Dualism presents a perfect passage to believing that the soul is immortal where as the
body disintegrates (however this is not the approach that Descartes himself took)
Leibniz Law = a law which states that if M and B are identical, they must share all properties (if
you can find even one property that M has, which B doesn't (or vice versa) than they are distinct
1st Argument of Dualism:
Descartes claims that a person can doubt the existence of their body, but cannot doubt
the existence of their mind, based on Leibniz law, he claimed that the mind and body are
separate entities
Counter to Argument 1:
Indubitable existence is not a genuine quality
Leibniz's law, properly understood does not license the conclusion of non-identity (think
of lady Gaga example)
Indubitable existence is not a property of objects, we can doubt propositions
2nd Argument for Dualism:
Descartes claims that the body, and not the mind, has a spatial location, again he uses
Leibniz's law to state that the mind and the body are two different things
Counter to Argument 2
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