The philosophy of science philosophy essay

Indeed, these differences can be conceived in more abstract terms as the contrast between empiricism and rationalism. This theme dominated the philosophical controversies of the 17th and 18th centuries and was hardly resolved before the advent of Immanuel Kant.

The philosophy of science philosophy essay

Mind—body problem The mind—body problem concerns the explanation of the relationship that exists between mindsor mental processesand bodily states or processes. Our perceptual experiences depend on stimuli that arrive at our various sensory organs from the external world, and these stimuli cause changes in our mental states, ultimately causing us to feel a sensation, which may be pleasant or unpleasant.

Someone's desire for a slice of pizza, for example, will tend to cause that person to move his or her body in a specific manner and in a specific direction to obtain what he or she wants. The question, then, is how it can be possible for conscious experiences to arise out of a lump of gray matter endowed with nothing but electrochemical properties.

It begins with the claim that mental phenomena are, in some respects, non- physical. In Western Philosophythe earliest discussions of dualist ideas are in the writings of Plato who maintained that humans' "intelligence" a faculty of the mind or soul could not be identified with, or explained in terms of, their physical body.

He was therefore the first to formulate the mind—body problem in the form in which it still exists today. If asked what the mind is, the average person would usually respond by identifying it with their selftheir personality, their soulor some other such entity.

They would almost certainly deny that the mind simply is the brain, or vice versa, finding the idea that there is just one ontological entity at play to be too mechanistic, or simply unintelligible. So, for example, one can reasonably ask what a burnt finger feels like, or what a blue sky looks like, or what nice music sounds like to a person.

But it is meaningless, or at least odd, to ask what a surge in the uptake of glutamate in the dorsolateral portion of the prefrontal cortex feels like. Philosophers of mind call the subjective aspects of mental events " qualia " or "raw feels". There are qualia involved in these mental events that seem particularly difficult to reduce to anything physical.

David Chalmers explains this argument by stating that we could conceivably know all the objective information about something, such as the brain states and wavelengths of light involved with seeing the color red, but still not know something fundamental about the situation — what it is like to see the color red.

Dualism must therefore explain how consciousness affects physical reality. One possible explanation is that of a miracle, proposed by Arnold Geulincx and Nicolas Malebranchewhere all mind—body interactions require the direct intervention of God.

Another possible argument that has been proposed by C. Lewis [33] is the Argument from Reason: Knowledge, however, is apprehended by reasoning from ground to consequent.

Therefore, if monism is correct, there would be no way of knowing this—or anything else—we could not even suppose it, except by a fluke. The zombie argument is based on a thought experiment proposed by Todd Moody, and developed by David Chalmers in his book The Conscious Mind.

The basic idea is that one can imagine one's body, and therefore conceive the existence of one's body, without any conscious states being associated with this body. Chalmers' argument is that it seems possible that such a being could exist because all that is needed is that all and only the things that the physical sciences describe about a zombie must be true of it.

Since none of the concepts involved in these sciences make reference to consciousness or other mental phenomena, and any physical entity can be by definition described scientifically via physicsthe move from conceivability to possibility is not such a large one.

The philosophy of science philosophy essay

It has been argued under physicalism that one must either believe that anyone including oneself might be a zombie, or that no one can be a zombie—following from the assertion that one's own conviction about being or not being a zombie is a product of the physical world and is therefore no different from anyone else's.

This argument has been expressed by Dennett who argues that "Zombies think they are conscious, think they have qualia, think they suffer pains—they are just 'wrong' according to this lamentable tradition in ways that neither they nor we could ever discover!

Seth has a clear and distinct idea of his mind as a thinking thing that has no spatial extension i. He also has a clear and distinct idea of his body as something that is spatially extended, subject to quantification and not able to think. It follows that mind and body are not identical because they have radically different properties.

History of Philosophy

A child touches a hot stove physical event which causes pain mental event and makes her yell physical eventthis in turn provokes a sense of fear and protectiveness in the caregiver mental eventand so on.Philosophy, Science and Religion mark three of the most fundamental modes of thinking about the world and our place in it.

Are these modes incompatible? Put another way: is the intellectually responsible thing to do to ‘pick sides’ and identify with one of these approaches at the exclusion of. Introduction Knowledge. Traditionally, the term "philosophy" referred to any body of knowledge.

In this sense, philosophy is closely related to religion, mathematics, natural science, education and politics. The Philosophy of Social Science.

Western philosophy |

The philosophy of social science can be described broadly as having two aims. First, it seeks to produce a rational reconstruction of social science.

History of Philosophy. The safest general characterization of the European philosophical tradition is that it consists of a series of footnotes to Plato.

Philosophy of Science. A few miles farther on, we came to a big, gravelly roadcut that looked like an ashfall, a mudflow, glacial till, and fresh oatmeal, imperfectly blended. "I don't know what this glop is," [Kenneth Deffeyes] said, in final capitulation. Writing Help. Get ready to write your paper on Problems of Philosophy with our suggested essay topics, sample essays, and more.

Social Science, Philosophy of | Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy