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# Mind-Body Problem

Last updated April 5, 2022

Concerned with how the mind and body are connected to one another

• are we just entirely made up of matter or is there something more?
• two points of doubt
• we know a bit about minds without knowing anything about brains
• are minds different from brains
• not true, they still might be the same thing

Approaches

• Materialism (physicalism) → minds and brains are identical (identity theory)
• nothing magical about minds, just the brains activity
• dualism → minds are distinct from the brain
• idealism → everything is mental/in the mind

## # Considering other minds

• for own mind → introspection works, more or less
• for other minds → must rely on behaviour of others (what they say and do)
• two possible ways of understanding how this way of knowing other minds works
• behaviourism → behaviour is all there is to mentality
• seems inconsistent w introspection
• we have thoughts that are never reflected in our behaviour
• can have multiple thoughts that correspond with a behaviour → umbrella example
• a man looks out of a window, goes to a closet and takes an umbrella before leaving his house
• what is he thinking?
• there are multiple possible thoughts that could’ve lead to his taking the umbrella
• common-sense psychology (C-SP) -> understand most likely correct interpretation
• common-sense knowledge of other minds rests on knowledge of some general principles of the characteristic behaviour of people
• He sees pretty much what we see when we look.
• He doesn’t like most stuff that people don’t like (getting soaked).
• He minimizes costs when possible.
• In general, we attribute normal perceptual and reasoning abilities.
• “We attribute thoughts to him that it is reasonable for him to have, given those abilities.”

## # Causal pictures

• thoughts are not directly perceivable, they lie behind and cause behaviour. as a result,
1. certain counterfactuals are true
1. if the thought never occurred, the behaviour would not have happened
2. thoughts explain the behaviour
3. there are regularities (natural laws) that govern the connection
• someone performs an action for a reason when their reason is a cause of their action
• A did B for a reason C when C caused A to do B
• arguments for the causal picture
• when we try to explain why someone did something, only citing the causes seem adequate
• arguments against the causal pictures
• some behaviours seem to be more than just a symptom or effect of inner factors like thoughts