The Philosophy Of The Mind : Functionalism And Eliminative Materialism

1113 Words Nov 29th, 2016 5 Pages
Two major positions in the philosophy of the mind are Functionalism and Eliminative Materialism. These positions both have many pros and cons, but nonetheless are the most plausible of the any other position. Functionalism requires one to contend with all of the shortcomings that dualist and the materialist maintain in order to come to a complete understanding of the perspective. “Eliminative materialism is the thesis that our common-sense conception of psychological phenomena constitutes a radically false theory.” (Churchland). Of the two, the most plausible is functionalism because it functions as a metaphysical method for reporting the occurrence of mental states.
“Functionalism is the doctrine that what makes something a thought, desire, pain (or any other type of mental state) depends not on its internal constitution, but solely on its function, or the role it plays, in the cognitive system of which it is a part.” (Levin). The functionalist stance has offered a solution to the mind body problem. That alone makes it one of the most plausible stances because it was able to provide a solution to something that all of its predecessors were incapable of doing. Functionalism is most easily understood by pointing out the flaws and defects of both the materialist and dualist point of view. One problem that dualism is the failure to account for mental causation. Dualist contend that the mind and the body are two entirely separate things. The main problem of dualism is that is…

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