Emergentism

It may or may not be something you have heard of, but its worth some consideration. I speak of it in regards to philosophy of mind, and in this case, it seems to be nearly the opposite of reductionism. Reductionism being the idea that consciousness and other seemingly mental states can be reduced to physical brain states, at least as their causes.

On the other hand, there is emergentism. The idea that the sum is greater than its parts or at least that some property/properties of the sum are not identical to that of any of its parts. So lets take the brain. We have an entirely physical entity made of matter. And then the soul/mind/conscious (which I will use interchangeably), which is non-physical, if I may, or immaterial and seemingly not made of anything (I will not resort to substance dualism). This mind seems to have intentionality, or the ability to “be” or think “about” things that matter seemingly cannot. We can see that these differences seem to emerge from nowhere and simply are.

I don’t really know if I support this idea entirely, as then one could be led to a mind-brain type identity theory that minds are not really anything more than brain processes, but that from the processes the mind emerges. For I want to espouse the idea of an immortal mind that is indeed separate from the body but is able to interact with it to a degree.

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About sorentmd

I am a student at the University of Cincinnati and am majoring in Philosophy and Marketing. I love the Lord, and I try to live my life in a way that pleases Him. View all posts by sorentmd

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