[Wittrs] Dualism Cooties: Classifying Searle

  • From: Joseph Polanik <jpolanik@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: wittrsamr@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sat, 13 Mar 2010 11:37:08 -0500

SWM wrote:

>Joseph Polanik wrote:

>>OTOH, if you take the position that properties are not reducible to
>>the substance of which they are a property, then the relevant
>>questions are 'how many fundamentally different property sets are
>>there' and 'how many substances are invoked to explain having that
>>many property sets'.

>I think you over intellectualize this kind of thing

I prefer a taxonomy that recognizes more nuances in the philosophical
landscape than your taxonomy (every philosophical position on the
experience/brain relation is either a dualism of ontological basicness
or it's not dualism at all).

>>S1/P1 - substance monism / property monism - reductive physicalists
>>and eliminative materialists here - Dennett and Searle (according to
>>Searle) - also panpsychists

>Searle, of course, peels off subjectness from the rest of the universe
>by asserting that it has a "first person ontology" which cannot be
>dealt with in a third person way. But what does that mean, finally?

according to you, it means that Searle is a Cartesian dualist, an
interactive substance dualist.

>I think Searle's approach is confused.

as do others. my opinion is that Searle's philosophy is either
internally inconsistent or incoherently articulated or both.

I agree with you that both Dennett and Searle "seem to embrace the
physicalist view of the universe"; but, in my view, such an assessment
makes Searle a substance monist.

obviously, you disagree; but, I am not convinced that (once the
inconsistencies in Searle's position are resolved) he would appear to be
an interactive substance dualist.

much more responsible is Chalmers' conclusion:

"Searle [1992] admits the logical possibility of zombie, and in fact
holds that there is merely a causal connection between the microphysical
and conscious experience, so he is perhaps best seen as a property
dualist." [Chalmers. _The Conscious Mind_ p. 376] {Searle 1992 is
Rediscovery of the Mind}

if Chalmers is right, then Searle is in class S1/P2: substance monism
(physicalism) and property dualism.



Nothing Unreal is Self-Aware



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