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Summary of the central problems




Summary of the central problems


He was a materialistunlike Plato who was a dualist His materialism theory dictates thatour minds are inseparable from our bodies According to him, body isa person’s matter yet soul or psyche is the form of a human being[ CITATION Ric85 l 1033 ],the structural appearance andcharacteristics

HIERARCHY OFSOULSAristotle argued that a person’s nature of soul reliedon the organism type and its placing in a hierarchy Plants possess asoul with nutritional powers, growth and reproduction that isrelevant to their type Animals also possess appetites and hence havewishes and feelings which enable them to move

HUMAN SOULAt thepeak of the hierarchy, there lies the reasoning power of the humansoul If the eye were an animal, its soul would be sight such thatthe removal of sight would deprive the eye its relevance and it wouldbe just a name, not different than a statue’s eye or a paintedfigure[ CITATION Ric85 l 1033 ]

On death, A deadorganism is an organism in a name alone and has lost its position inperfuming the things that other remaining organisms can do thereforeit lacks a soul and it is only prime matter

INSEPARABLE SOULThebody and soul are one thing and not two separate elements

MORTAL SOULThe soulisn’t immortal according to Aristotle’s understanding and neitherdoes it separate from the body since it is the form of a person thatconstitutes a person’s body and not only matterThe reason tothis given as all entities of the soul cannot be separated from thesoul with the reason exception and it has also been suggested that hebelieved immortality was the reason though it is still unclearHowever, if reason possesses the capacity to ensure some sort of lifeafter death, it can’t have an identity that is recognizable[ CITATION Alb96 l 1033 ]


The thesis ofthe existing distinction between the mind and the body called“MIND-BODY Dualism is one of the lasting and deepest legacies ofthis philosopher He gets to his final remarks by profusely arguingabout the state of the mind being entirely different from the nature/state of the entire body and hence it`s not deemed achievable for aone to be of existence with the absence of the other This argumentelicited the arousal of the presently debated, rather famous problementailing the body-mind causal interaction: how the movement of limbs(for instance, raising one’s hand to ask a question) is caused bythe mind, how organ sensations present in brain are sensed by thebody despite the difference in their natures Descartes` reply tothe problem via his rather short remarks regarding how one`s mind isharmonized with one`s body to create the complete human being [ CITATION Ric85 l 1033 ]



One of the earliest andsystematic mind and body concept chips out of the works in philosophyof a well-known philosopher, from Greece, Plato (429-347 BC) He,just like Descartes, viewed the human mind to be similarly to thesoul In addition, Plato stated that the human soul indeed existedbefore and survived after the body unlike Descartes, and that themind went through a continued reincarnation process or simply&quottransmigration&quot[ CITATION Cot09 l 1033 ]

One essential aspect thatshould be considered in examining important factors in Plato`sinterpretation regarding the soul`s co relation with the bodyaccording his &quottheory of forms&quot As per his perspective,everything that is on this earth , may it be a language or asubstance bears a unique corresponding &quotform&quot or ideally aflawless idea Hence, in Plato’s illustration, a small thing like abed would therefore be related to the flawless idea of anindependently bed which is already in existence(which all other bedsshare) A similar situation is also applicable to things such asanimals, morals, colors, …For example, the common aspect possessedby essentially all shades of the color red is their correspondence insome way to the ideally perfect &quotred&quot[ CITATION Dav09 l 1033 ]

The gaining of knowledgefor the mind – or soul according to Plato, arises from therecollection of these various forms By performing this, the soul wasin essence getting back the level of knowledge that it initially hadbefore birth And accordance with that view, Plato`s dualism supportfor major on the affinity that exists in between the embodiment andthe development of getting enlightened through cognizance with thearticulations

Arguments for Dualism

Regarding dualism, thereare 4 major arguments brought forth by Plato, which are all found inPhaedo ,a dialogue

(i) Ceasing to be aftercoming to be (The Cyclical Argument)[ CITATION Dav09 l 1033 ]This contention depends upon theunderstanding that non-similar depend on each other and at the endleads from one to the other When it comes to life and death, aconclusion that is arrived at is, death proceeds life due to the factthat life comes before death Therefore, living ones originate upon -or are indeed embodied of – the non-living, which again loose lifeand are in turn reincarnated (and the process repeats itself)

(ii) Remembering isdirectly correlated to knowing (The Recollection Argument) Thisargument is founded upon the fact that all available intellectualmaterial is generally a recollection form Through demonstrating thata young, untaught boy, who lacks any background in neither Mathematics nor geometry, is able to be headed to show or &quotarriveat&quot the needed intellectual information that he never knew hepossessed, this is proven According to Plato, could he also showsuch intellectual information if he was not reincarnating it?

(iii) The Soul isindestructible (The Affinity Argument) This third argument tries toshow the soul’s survival against death – however, it may actuallypredate one`s birth – Due to the fact that the body is definitelymortal, transforming while built up of many varying parts, thus thesoul – that appears to be of one component –should thus not bemortal and not changing also[ CITATION Cot09 l 1033 ]

(iv) The Argument thatarises from Opposites Due to the fact that life and death areopposites, this indicates that they must be mutually exclusive toeach other, in accordance to this, life continues even after the bodyloses life

Argumentsagainst dualism

1Accordingto Descartes a human being possesses an immaterial part that candistinctively exist on its own This view is however not accepted dueto favor of property dualism The perfect contention comes from thematerialists who favor property dualism Going by them, there isdefinitely nothing that is beyond the physical The existence ofemotions, belief, thought, experiences and sensation are not deniedbut they think that such phenomena can just be explained with regardto physical properties[ CITATION Ric85 l 1033 ]

2&quotThe Belief that mental materials and physical properties arefundamentally different kinds of entities Being a solution to theproblematicissue of traditional mind-body that dualism gets fromDescartes and specifically his followers in the seventeenth centuryThe variations on the following themes: interactionism, parallelism,and epiphenomenalism exist when dualists try to explain theabruptlydifferent realms of mind and body events yet they seem sowell-coordinated with each other&quot&nbsp[ CITATION Ric85 l 1033 ]And,traditionally, the `dualism`thoughts exceeded everything in existence and not just `thoughts` inthe mind/body distinctions&nbsp[ CITATION Ric85 l 1033 ]

3 In as muchas CD is true, and there isdivision between body and mind, there still is some reason to thinkof the existence of other peopleie there is still need to thinkthat there exists other minds Why? Because,even when I am given CD,I still understand that I possess a mind And then I can view mycorrelation with happenings in mind and my character Ido witnesssome causation that moves from states of my mind to my body statesNow, I can see in others certain states of their bodies[ CITATION Cot09 l 1033 ]Provided the correlation that I observedin my own case, I now have quite some reason to actually think thatthey, too, possess minds, and that it is these occurrences in theirmind that is causing the events in their bodies So I amderivingananalogy from my own case [ CITATION Alb96 l 1033 ]Thisis at times referred to the Argumentfrom Analogy

In conclusion, I support the arguments brought forward in Plato’sdualism theory and my conclusions regarding mind and soul as per thedifferent philosophers are the same as Plato’s


Cottingham, John 2009 Western philosophy: ananthology Malden (MA): Blackwell

Davies, Julian A 2009 A philosophy of the human beingLanham: University Press of America pp31-70

Harper, Albert W J 1996 Discussion and commentary onKant`s critiques Lewiston: E Mellen Press Pp4

Reichmann, James B 1985 Philosophy of the human personChicago, Ill: Loyola University Press