Brain And Substance Dualism

Like a Hermit Crab and its shell, the substance we define as a human being is not one single entity but is two entirely different entities, connected but completely distinct from one another. First we have the physical world that surrounds our lives daily. In this world we are able to distinguish things like the natural wonders. For example, trees and crystal formations. These objects exist, extended spatially, within a three dimensional physical realm we interact with every day. Among these wonders is the human brain. Because of the brain we are able to conceive these wonders, even the conception of the brain itself. Through modern science we are able to understand the physical processes of the brain. Yet, there is still a realm of existence …show more content…
In The Discourse of Method, DesCartes states “…except our own thoughts, there is nothing absolutely in our power” (Chapter 3, 3rd Maxim). What DesCartes means to say is that the physical realm is determined, much like a clock that is endlessly moving. The physical world being determined is based on the belief that the will of God is omnipotent and omniscient. Because God is absolute in knowing what will happen, it must happen. Otherwise the Nature of God would be flawed. God is infallible to DesCartes. However, the mental processes are open for the individual to freely choose his or her state of mind. For the Dualist there is an assumption that we have free will simple because it is “evident”. Because we have the ability to doubt in general, but specifically ability to conceive and maybe accept an omniscient …show more content…
If there is truly an immaterial substance linked to our bodies that makes us a thinking thing, then there has to be some degree of free will. A criticism of freedom of thought regularly held is that the immaterial mind cannot have total free will of mind because it is impossible to think of not thinking. Or possibly thinking of nothing. I feel this is a straw man. Admittedly there is a level of restriction in “free will” of the mind, it is obvious that we cannot think of nothing. The boundaries of freedom do not represent free will. Free will is the decision making process within the boundaries of the conceivable. It is likely though that existence is determined for the most part. It is not deterministic because of an infallible omniscient God. Because we understand causation, we understand that there is sufficient reason that causes come before effects. If the commonly embraced theory of the big bang is true than the universe is one big reaction that started with one big cause. In that respect our actions are just chemical and physical

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