Relational Perspective Neutral Monism: an Alternative Approach to Establishing a Science of Mind/Consciousness Open Access

Young, Theo (2013)

Permanent URL: https://etd.library.emory.edu/concern/etds/4f16c323s?locale=en
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Abstract

This paper explores the problem of consciousness by attempting to fit the mind within a naturalistic framework of the universe. Contemporary neuroscience has made enormous progress in understanding brain function and mechanisms from a behavioral standpoint, but one problem continues to elude us: how the brain, a three pound organ, can be conscious - not just a processor of sensory input, but, as Thomas Nagel wrote, "that there is something it is like to be" an organism with a brain (Nagel 1974). Until now we have mostly conducted science based on an approach that considers ourselves as external observers examining the universe, but it is time to put ourselves, the conscious observers, back into the universe. No paradigm of reality can be considered complete unless it incorporates consciousness. In order to achieve a naturalistic understanding of consciousness it will be necessary to modify the way in which we view reality, not as a universe of physical matter, from which somehow the mental derives, but as a neutral reality, of which the 'physical' and 'mental' are just different representations from different perspectives.

Table of Contents

Abstract: 1
Introduction and Overview:
1

Chapter 1: 3
Chapter 2: 10
Chapter 3: 14
Chapter 4: 18
Chapter 5: 23
Chapter 6: 26
Chapter 7: 28
Chapter 8: 35
Chapter 9: 44
Chapter 10: 50
Chapter 11: 58
Chapter 12: 65
Chapter 13: 81
Chapter 14: 82
Chapter 15: 85
Figures: 86
References: 102

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