Comparing Descartes And Gertler's Dualism

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Hannah Piazza September 23, 2014 1st Phi 110 Paper Professor Howell Carruthers’ Materialism and Descartes’ and Gertler’s Dualism The debate over the relationship between body and mind has been around since Plato and Aristotle. A much debated facet of the mind-body dispute is the existence of brain states. A mental state is a “state” or condition some “mind” might be in, it includes: thoughts, pains, beliefs, desires. Brain states are states of the brain and or nervous system, they are brain activity and can be described as an event or condition in a material substance. Descartes believed in a form of mind/body dualism also known as interactionistic substance dualism. Interactionistic substance dualism supports the idea that mental states are of an immaterial mind or soul. Paul Carruthers argues in favor of the identity-theory form of mind-body materialism. This means that he believes that mental states are identical to brain states.…show more content…
Minds are thinking but non spacial. Bodies are spacial, but non-thinking. He believed that the universe is composed of two fundamental and distinct kinds of “substance”, the material being governed by physics and the mental existing outside of the laws of physics. Carruthers subscribes to identity theory materialism which teaches that mental states (thoughts, sensations, etc.) are identical to states of the brain/central nervous system. Where Dualism claims there is a mental substance or mind or soul, materialism claims that there is no mental substance. According to materialism, “Mental states” are real but they are really brain states, or just physical events within the central nervous

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