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Date Posted: 14:47
Author: Eponymous
Subject: Re: How About This?
In reply to: ketch 's message, "Re: How About This?" on 14:46

You say that all my premises (1) – (3) show only that “under a particular set of circumstances certain physical conditions led to a loss of awareness.” What sort of “circumstances” do you mean, and how are these “circumstances” distinct from “conditions”?

Also, I think it’s a conceptual muddle to say that “body and mind” are interrelated in the relevant way, but then say that mind persists after death. Dualism certainly requires that minds interact with bodies; but that is quite different than saying that the activities of bodies can extinguish the activities of the mind.

Consider the “radio receiver” model that some yoga aficionados cite to describe the relationship between body and mind. The radio receiver can modulate transmissions and interpret them in myriad ways; but turning off the radio doesn’t make the radio waves disappear, or make the source stop transmitting.

(Of course, the radio receiver metaphor is faulty; but that’s a problem for dualists, not monists.)

As to your solipsistic argument that A’s awareness being physically dependent does not entail that all human awareness must be so dependent: That is true. It is also true that just because one apple falls due to gravity doesn’t entail that others will. Inductive and deductive logics are quite different; science deals primarily in the former. And a general inductive conclusion for physical supervenience certainly seems warranted here.

But even if that conclusion weren’t warranted, the case of A's anesthesia-induced nonawareness offers a separate, but related argument against dualism. Dualists bank on the intuition that it is impossible for a material thing to create a mind. The example of A eviscerates that intuition. And once one accepts that a living brain can create mind, dualism becomes an unmotivated postulation.

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