[Wittrs] Dualism Cooties: Classifying Searle

  • From: Joseph Polanik <jpolanik@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: wittrsamr@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sun, 14 Mar 2010 17:08:56 -0400

Gordon Swobe wrote:

>Searles defies classification:

>"There are not two (or five or seven) fundamental ontological
>categories, rather the act of categorization itself is always interest
>relative. For that reason the attempt to answer such questions as, 'How
>many fundamental metaphysical categories are there?', as it stands, is
>meaningless. We live in exactly one world and there are as many
>different ways of dividing it as you like."

>- Searle, "Why I Am Not Property Dualist"

statements like that are why I say that Searle's position is either
internally inconsistent or incoherently articulated or both.

in the same article, Searle says:

"What is the difference between consciousness and other phenomena that
undergo an ontological reduction on the basis of a causal reduction,
phenomena such as colour and solidity? The difference is that
consciousness has a first-person ontology; that is, it only exists as
experienced by some human or animal, and therefore, it cannot be reduced
to something that has a third-person ontology, something that exists
independently of experiences."

here is dividing phenomena into that which has a 'first-person ontology'
and that which has a 'third-person ontology'. that claim, plus the claim
that the former is not reducible to the latter, supports my belief that
Searle clearly acknowledges a phenomenological dualism.

opinions differ as to whether he explains this phenomenological dualism
by postulating a property dualism or a dualism of ontological basicness
(allegedly the same as Cartesian dualism but different in unspecified
ways from what Descartes actually held).

Joe


--

Nothing Unreal is Self-Aware

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