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Mind, Brain, and Free Will presents a powerful new case for substance dualism (the idea that humans consist of two parts--body and soul) and for libertarian free will (that humans have some freedom to choose between alternatives, independently of the causes which influence them). Richard Swinburne argues that answers to questions about mind, body, and free will depend cruc Mind, Brain, and Free Will presents a powerful new case for substance dualism (the idea that humans consist of two parts--body and soul) and for libertarian free will (that humans have some freedom to choose between alternatives, independently of the causes which influence them). Richard Swinburne argues that answers to questions about mind, body, and free will depend crucially on the answers to more general philosophical questions. He begins by analyzing the criteria for one event being the same as another, one substance being the same as another, and a state of affairs being metaphysically possible; and then goes on to analyze the criteria for a belief about these issues being justified. Pure mental events (including conscious events) are distinct from physical events and interact with them. Swinburne claims that no result from neuroscience or any other science could show that interaction does not take place; and illustrates this claim by showing that recent scientific work (such as Libet's experiments) has no tendency whatever to show that our intentions do not cause brain events. He goes on to argue for agent causation, and claims that--to speak precisely--it is we, and not our intentions, that cause our brain events. It is metaphysically possible that each of us could acquire a new brain or continue to exist without a brain; and so we are essentially souls. Brain events and conscious events are so different from each other that it would not be possible to establish a scientific theory which would predict what each of us would do in situations of moral conflict. Hence given a crucial epistemological principle (the Principle of Credulity) we should believe that things are as they seem to be: that we make choices independently of the causes which influence us. According to Swinburne's lucid and ambitious account, it follows that we are morally responsible for our actions.


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Mind, Brain, and Free Will presents a powerful new case for substance dualism (the idea that humans consist of two parts--body and soul) and for libertarian free will (that humans have some freedom to choose between alternatives, independently of the causes which influence them). Richard Swinburne argues that answers to questions about mind, body, and free will depend cruc Mind, Brain, and Free Will presents a powerful new case for substance dualism (the idea that humans consist of two parts--body and soul) and for libertarian free will (that humans have some freedom to choose between alternatives, independently of the causes which influence them). Richard Swinburne argues that answers to questions about mind, body, and free will depend crucially on the answers to more general philosophical questions. He begins by analyzing the criteria for one event being the same as another, one substance being the same as another, and a state of affairs being metaphysically possible; and then goes on to analyze the criteria for a belief about these issues being justified. Pure mental events (including conscious events) are distinct from physical events and interact with them. Swinburne claims that no result from neuroscience or any other science could show that interaction does not take place; and illustrates this claim by showing that recent scientific work (such as Libet's experiments) has no tendency whatever to show that our intentions do not cause brain events. He goes on to argue for agent causation, and claims that--to speak precisely--it is we, and not our intentions, that cause our brain events. It is metaphysically possible that each of us could acquire a new brain or continue to exist without a brain; and so we are essentially souls. Brain events and conscious events are so different from each other that it would not be possible to establish a scientific theory which would predict what each of us would do in situations of moral conflict. Hence given a crucial epistemological principle (the Principle of Credulity) we should believe that things are as they seem to be: that we make choices independently of the causes which influence us. According to Swinburne's lucid and ambitious account, it follows that we are morally responsible for our actions.

30 review for Mind, Brain, and Free Will

  1. 4 out of 5

    MM

    Richard Swinburne is a substance dualist. What that means is that he thinks the mental soul/self is a separate substance from the physical substance of our bodies. And he thinks we, as humans, are pure mental substances. And that we have free will (cuz life is too complex to ever prove otherwise) and moral responsibility (because he's an incompatibilist). So Swinburne begins with ontology. He defines everything and says how the history of the world is basically the history of events (the change o Richard Swinburne is a substance dualist. What that means is that he thinks the mental soul/self is a separate substance from the physical substance of our bodies. And he thinks we, as humans, are pure mental substances. And that we have free will (cuz life is too complex to ever prove otherwise) and moral responsibility (because he's an incompatibilist). So Swinburne begins with ontology. He defines everything and says how the history of the world is basically the history of events (the change of properties of a substance / the destruction/creation of substances) that can be told in various ways. I felt that he skimmed over Time too much in this section. Then he moves on to epistemology. He has (what I imagine to be ) a contentious principle; namely, the Principle of Credulity. What this says is that things should be thought to be the way they appear to us unless we have reason to believe otherwise. He says that this is how humans function. He also talks about logical vs metaphysical necessity/possibility. One important thing that he talks about somewhere is a mental vs physical property. A mental property is one that we have privileged access to. We always know more than anybody else about it. He discusses beliefs, intentions, desires, thoughts and sensations. Okay, I read this a while back so I'm forgetting a bit. But I wrote an (incomplete) essay on this so I am just gonna copy it here (also, there were references but you guys will have to deal with not getting those lol): An informative, rigid designator is one whose necessary and sufficient conditions in order to be the thing referred to in any possible world must be known by the person using it . In order for two properties to be the identical, their informative designators must be logically equivalent, which they will do if and only if they pick out the same properties. Therefore, the identity of properties is known a priori. There are two criteria for substances to be identical: first, they must belong to the “same minimum essential kind” , i.e. have the same essential properties, and second, they must consist of largely the same parts and their configuration. An ultimate part is a substance that has the the essential properties of its kind and a “this”ness, which makes it what it is. Swinburne states what he considers a necessary truth, “the principle of the identity of composites”: “there cannot (logically) be two things which have all the same parts having all the same properties, arranged in the same way” . For Swinburne, substances have properties . Swinburne defines a mental property as one that, when instantiated within a substance, that substance has privileged access to and a physical property as one who, during the period of instantiation, the substance has no privileged access to. A pure mental property does not entail the instantiation of a metaphysically contingent instantiation physical property in its substance . Swinburne defines what he considers five pure mental properties: sensations , beliefs , thoughts , intentions , and desires . They are further categorized by being if they are propositional or conscious . Given Swinburne’s identity criteria for properties, mental and physical properties cannot be logically equivalent and therefore are not identical. A mental event and physical event are defined similarly . Lastly, a (pure) mental substance is one for whom the possession of a (pure) mental property is essential and a physical substance is one for whom this is not the case . Now, Swinburne needs to prove that humans are pure mental subtances. First, he shows that we are mental substances: because people co-experience conscious, i.e. mental, events, the physical extensions of the substance are defined by its mental properties, i.e. including all those physical properties in the brain that cause the co-experienced event. Swinburne says: [W]e would fail to the tell the whole history of the world if we traced only the history of each part of the brain, regarded as a separate substance, and the instantiations of mental properties most immediately causing or caused by events in that part, for there would then be truths about properties […] which we would have to attribute – falsely – to different substances [and also] substances which are such that events in those parts are the immediate causes or effects of and only of conscious events which are coexperienced with other conscious events belonging to the same substance […] [The] mental property […] will delimit the physical boundaries of the substance, and so help to determine which physical properties it possesses. (pp 143) An important point to note is that an event is simply the instantiation of a property in a substance . Therefore, since the mental property is the essential determining feature of any further physical property of the substance, humans are at the very least mental substances . Humans are pure mental substances because, in an argument similar to the FM [flying man - Avicenna] experiment, it is logically possible for a person to have pure mental experience without a body; therefore, only pure mental properties are essential to her existence, ergo she is a pure mental substance. Furthermore, she has a “this”ness since in another possible world, there may be someone with the same properties who is not her. Swinburne defends the so-called simple view of personal identity (PI), which holds that PI is a separate feature of this world, not analysable in terms of psychological or physical continuity. To show that physical continuity and psychological continuity is not necessary, he devises two thought experiments: in one, a brain is divided and implanted into different skulls; in the other, a brain is slowly removed and replaced over time. In both cases, Swinburne argues that “the preservation of certain brain parts is neither logically necessary nor logically sufficient for PI”. In the brain-transplant experiment, since both people cannot be the original person, having different lives, it is tempting to say that it is an arbitrary decision who is . However, Swinburne argues that even if she, at the beginning of the operation, knew all there is to know about her parts, there is something more to know, beyond “similarity and causal connections” . In the brain-replacement experiment, the physical change of parts means that there is not physical continuity, yet the person arguably still exists. Furthermore, if it is logically possible for the person to have a continuous experience of conscious events during this experiment, the overlap of those events entails the same substance . Hence, the same mental substance survives during these experiments. Now, Swinburne considers “I” an informative designator for the person using it. Hence, the logical possibility of a person undergoing those experiments, if done onto me, makes them metaphysically possible. The I-designator does not need mental, physical, or psychological continuity to be “I”. Swinburne thinks that, in the case of apparent personal memories, the belief that they are ours is pre-inferential. Memories provide us with an understanding of the mode in which the mental substance operates, but their continuity is not necessary for sameness of persons. Lastly, Swinburne considers the example of dreaming. He says that during sleep, a person need only have a pure mental property, not necessarily conscious, to have overlap, and this is evidenced by the fact that when she wakes up, she will claim to have the same conscious experiences as the person before sleeping. Then, he goes through all of these supposed refutations of simple PI, such as Parfit's view of continuity/connections. After that, he talks about Free Will. I got a bit lost here but I think what he is saying is that brain events can cause mental events, mental events can cause brain events, and mental events can cause brain events. And for very simple basic things we may be able to show brain events --> mental events but not for humans as a whole, because there is just too much info to every make a law of some sort. Which is I guess an interesting way to sidestep determinism. Then he talks about how we are morally responsible because we have free will and he uses the principle of credulity here too. Ultimately, this is a great book. I think everybody should read it (and I should re-read it). But I think his principle of credulity is unncessary. In my (actual final) essay, I compared Swinburne to Avicenna, another substance dualist. And I concluded that Avicenna's arguments are better because they rely mostly on reductio, whereas Swinburne is forced to use the principle of credulity which is understandably contentious (also, I believe one of his brain-replacement arguments is just wrong). So, while I did enjoy this book, I definitely think that substance dualism can probably find a better defence elsewhere. That having been said, Swinburne is a contemporary philosopher, which means that he understands the (supposed) onslaught of psychological experiments and Penfield and split brains and all that stuff on the idea of a mental substance. So the part I enjoyed the most was definitely when he goes through a few experiments that are meant to disprove mental substances and refutes them. For that alone, it is definitely worth reading.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Jacob O'connor

    Challenging but rewarding. The (rather considerable) price of the book is justified in Swinburne's response to the Libet experiments (see note 83). I've held this paradox in suspense for several years now, so it feels good to have a rational rejoinder. Notes: (1) three kinds of things: substances (the constituents of the world such as electrons, planets, and houses), their properties (such as weighing 1000 kg, or being spherical), and events (occurrences at particular times, which consist in subs Challenging but rewarding. The (rather considerable) price of the book is justified in Swinburne's response to the Libet experiments (see note 83). I've held this paradox in suspense for several years now, so it feels good to have a rational rejoinder. Notes: (1) three kinds of things: substances (the constituents of the world such as electrons, planets, and houses), their properties (such as weighing 1000 kg, or being spherical), and events (occurrences at particular times, which consist in substances having or changing their properties) (9) (2) persons are ‘agent-causes’ (10) (3) Mental events are events to which the subject (the person whose events they are) has privileged access, that is, a way of knowing about them not available to others (10) 1. Ontology, 1. What sorts of things there are (13) (4) A property may be a monadic property of one substance (possessed by that substance by itself quite independently of its relations to other substances), or a relation between two or more substances. (14) (5) Of the properties which a substance has, some are essential (or necessary) properties of that substance; that is, if the substance did not have these properties it could not exist. (14). Occupying space’ is an essential property of my desk; my desk could not exist if it did not occupy space. (6) By ‘it is not logically possible that this should happen’, I mean—loosely—it does not make sense to suppose that this might happen In ordinary language only those instantiations of properties which involve change are called events, while the ones which do not involve change are called ‘states of affairs’ (15) (7) (iff’ means ‘if and only if’.) (20) (8) A rigid designator is a word which ‘in every possible world, designates the same object’,8 and I shall understand ‘the same object’ (or ‘thing’) to mean ‘the same substance, property, time, or event’; that is, designates the same object, whatever happens to that object so long as it exists. (By ‘in every possible world’ is meant ‘whatever else might be the case’.) A non-rigid designator is a word which applies to something only as long as it has some non-essential property. (20) (9) Two informative designators are logically equivalent if and only if they are associated with logically equivalent sets of necessary and sufficient conditions. (22). Personal note: law of identity? 3. Logical and metaphysical possibility (10) I shall understand ‘metaphysical necessity’ as the strongest kind of necessity there is, and ‘metaphysical impossibility as the strongest kind of impossibility there is, and so ‘metaphysical possibility’ as the weakest kind of possibility there is. Some event is metaphysically necessary iff it must happen, whatever else is the case; metaphysically impossible iff it could not happen, whatever else is the case; metaphysically possible iff it could happen under some circumstances; metaphysically contingent iff it is metaphysically possible but not metaphysically necessary. (11) a metaphysically possible world as one which was different from a merely logically possible world; it had to be both logically possible and one whose full description involves no metaphysically necessarily false sentences. (30) (12) Loosely, properties of kind A supervene on properties of kind B, iff which substances have which (if any) A-properties is entailed by which (if any) substances have B-properties. More precisely, a kind of property A supervenes on a kind of property B iff ‘Necessarily for any property F of kind A if any substance x has F, there exists a property G of kind B such that x has G, and necessarily any substance y having G has F’.18 (‘Necessarily’ in this definition means ‘of metaphysical necessity’.) (30) (13) This gives rise to the following definition of supervenience of kinds of events: events consisting in a substance x having a property F of kind A, supervene on events consisting in x having a property G of kind B, iff necessarily for any x which has any property F of kind A, x has some property G of kind B, such that necessarily if x has G, x has F.19 I read the claims of many philosophers that mental events are ‘constituted by’ or ‘realized in’ brain events as meaning the same as the claim that mental events ‘supervene on’ brain events (31) 4. Identity criteria for properties and events 5. Identity criteria for substances (38) (14) For a substance S2 at a time t2 to be the same substance as a substance S1 at an earlier time t1, two kinds of criteria have to be satisfied. First the two substances have to belong to the same minimum essential kind (38) (15) The second requirement for a substance at one time to be the same as a substance at another time is that the two substances should consist of largely the same parts, or parts obtained by gradual replacement from those of the former substance, the extent to which this has to hold varying with the genus of the substance (39) (16) One theory is that substances are simply bundles of co-instantiated properties, properties in the sense of universals, that is, in the sense defined earlier.30 A substance is just a bundle of properties instantiated together, such as the monadic properties of having a certain shape, colour, hardness, and such-and-such relations to other bundles of instantiated monadic properties. A particular electron is just a bundle of the properties of having a certain mass, charge, and spin, and having such-and-such spatio-temporal relations to various other bundles of monadic properties. The alternative theory is that some substances have thisness. A substance has thisness iff there could exist instead of it (or in addition to it) a different substance which has all the same properties as it, monadic and relational, including its spatiotemporal relations to earlier and later substances having such-and-such monadic properties and relations. (43) (17) Personal note: I admit I'm not fully following swinburne's discourse on the"thisness" of properties. Better if he would tell me what's at stake. Why does it matter? (18) Having pointed out the problems involved in individuating physical substances, and acknowledging that the physical substances of some other world might have thisness, since nothing important for the main topics of this book turns on the issue, I shall in future take it for granted that the fundamental particles of our world and so the larger physical substances composed of them do not have thisness—which is, I suspect, the majority view of philosophers of physics. I shall thus assume that physical substances are what they are in virtue of their properties, including the causal and spatio-temporal relations of their parts to those of earlier substances—though, as I pointed out, we can cut up the world into substances in different arbitrary ways and still tell the same world story. An informative designator of a substance will then pick it out in virtue of it having the properties which make it a substance of a certain kind, and the spatio-temporal or other relations of its parts to those of earlier substances which make it the individual substance it is. (48) 2: Epistemology 1. Justified belief (55) (19) A person’s belief is ‘epistemically justified’ (and so in some sense ‘rational’) iff it is (in some sense) probably true; and better justified the more probable it is. But there is a considerable dispute among philosophers about whether a belief being probably true is a matter of it (that is, the content of the belief, the proposition believed) being made probable by the evidence available to the believer—which is the ‘internalist’ view—or whether it is a matter of the belief being produced in the right way—which is the ‘externalist’ view—which makes it probably true. (20) There is not a univocal sense of ‘justified’; there are both externalist and internalist senses in which a belief may be ‘justified’, and more than one sense of each kind. (55) (21) In taking any journey we start from the place where we are; and in taking an epistemic journey to a world-view, we begin from those propositions which seem to us to be true but not on the basis of other propositions (always allowing for the possibility that we may come to believe on the basis of other evidence that they are not true after all). These propositions which form our evidence may be called our ‘basic propositions’. (56) (22) 2. The Principle of Credulity (57) It is, I suggest, a fundamental a priori epistemic principle, which I call the Principle of Credulity, that any basic belief (that is, the content of that basic belief, the proposition believed) is probably true (that is, it is more probable than not that the belief is true) on the believer’s evidence that he believes it—in the absence of evidence in the form of other basic beliefs of that believer which makes it probable that he is mistaken. Put in another way, the principle claims that what seems to us to be so probably is so, that our apparent experiences are probably real experiences. This holds paradigmatically for perceptual beliefs, that is, beliefs arising from perception. If it seems (or appears) to me that I am seeing a desk in front of me (that is, I find myself believing that I am seeing a desk), then, in the absence of counter-evidence, probably there is a desk in front of me. (23) If we cannot start our epistemic journey from our basic beliefs, we cannot start it at all, and total scepticism would follow. (58) (24) Personal note: thinking about properly basic beliefs. A Christian is someone who believes God. This creates a challenge speaking across world-views. Whatever propositions we may convince them of, they will still seat them within their authority. (25) Alvin Plantinga (without making his point in terms of ‘probability’) gave the name of ‘properly basic belief’ to any belief which we are justified in believing without needing further evidence; and he gave the name of ‘Classical Foundationalism’ to the view that only perceptual beliefs, beliefs about our own conscious states, and ‘self-evident’ beliefs (such as ‘2 + 2= 4’) are properly basic. (59) 3. Justified beliefs about logical modalities (60) (26) A sentence is logically impossible iff it entails a contradiction (27) A sentence s is logically necessary iff its negation entails a contradiction (61) (28) The direct way to show that some sentence whose status is not obvious is logically necessary is to deduce a contradiction from its negation (61) (29) While the direct way to show some sentence to be logically impossible is to deduce a contradiction, and the direct way to show some sentence to be logically necessary is to deduce a contradiction from its negation, and the direct way to show some sentence to be logically possible is to deduce it from some obviously logically possible sentence, there is a less direct way of showing that the requisite entailments exist than by going through the process of deducing them. (63) (30) This less direct way is to use a method which John Rawls called the ‘method of reflective equilibrium (31) As I mentioned earlier, internalists hold that a belief is justified iff it is made probable by evidence accessible to the believer. They do so on the grounds that ‘S is justified in believing p’ mini-entails ‘S’s belief that p is based on and made probable by evidence accessible to S’, and vice-versa. Externalists hold that the justification of a belief depends on the kind of process which produced it; and the normal form of externalism, reliabilism, holds that a belief is justified iff it is produced by a reliable process, that is, a process which normally produces true beliefs (66) 4. Direct sources of justified beliefs about contingent events (71) (32) There are three direct sources of knowledge—experience (in a wide sense), memory, and testimony (71) (33) I just ‘see’ it (in a metaphorical sense of ‘see’) (72) (34) It is a second fundamental a priori epistemic principle that what people seem to be (i.e. apparently are) telling us that they are experiencing or remember having experienced or remember as facts, they (epistemically) probably do or did experience or probably are facts, again barring counter-evidence. I call this the Principle of Testimony. So many of our beliefs depend on the apparent testimony of others (spoken or written). Almost all we know about science or history or geography depends on what it seems to us that others have told us; and so often they tell us what they do because others have told it to them. If we cannot trust the testimony of others (and that normally involves trusting our memory that someone did tell us so-and-so, even if we cannot remember who that person was), our knowledge of the world would be very limited indeed (73) (35) Most scientists rely the majority of the time on the apparent testimony (written and spoken) of observers that they have made certain observations and of theoreticians that they have done certain calculations. And the wider educated public relies entirely on the testimony of scientists with respect both to their calculations and to their observations. (74) 5. Indirect sources of justified beliefs about contingent events (75) (36) Philosophers of science give different accounts of the criteria for evidence making a theory probable, but I suggest that something along the following lines must be approximately correct. An explanatory theory T is rendered (epistemically) probably true (or likely to be true) by evidence insofar as (1) the theory predicts, that is, makes probable, much evidence observed to be true and no evidence observed to be false, (2) the theory ‘fits in’ with any ‘background evidence’ (i.e. it meshes with theories outside the field it purports to explain, which are themselves rendered probable by their evidence in virtue of these criteria), (3) the theory is simple, and (4) the theory has small scope (i.e. is concerned to explain a small field and makes few and imprecise predictions about it). 6. The causal criterion (79) (37) In summary there is an epistemic assumption (EA) behind the justification of scientific theories that: (1) A justified belief in a scientific theory (which is not itself a consequence of any higher-level theory in which the believer has a justified belief) requires a justified belief that the theory makes true predictions. (2) A justified belief that a theory makes true predictions is (unless this is a consequence of some higher-level theory in which the believer has a justified belief) provided by and only by the evidence of apparent experience, memory, and testimony that the theory predicts certain events and that these events occurred. (3) Such justification is undermined by evidence that any apparent experience was not caused by the event apparently experienced, any apparent memory was not caused by an apparent experience of the event apparently remembered, or any apparent testimony was not caused by the testifier’s intention to report his or her apparent experience or memory. And what goes for scientific theories goes, I suggest, for any theory about any metaphysically contingent matters including historical theories about what has happened in the past. (82) 3. Property and Event Dualism 1. Definitions (87 (38) So I define a mental property as one to whose instantiation in it a substance necessarily has privileged access on all occasions of its instantiation, and a physical property as one to whose instantiation in it a substance necessarily has no privileged access on any occasion of its instantiation (39) Since the informative designators of any physical properties are not logically equivalent to those of any mental properties (since there are different criteria for applying the designators), no mental property is identical to a physical property. The criteria for being in pain are not the same as the criteria for having some brain property (e.g. ‘having one’s c-fibres fire’), or behaving in a certain way in response to a bodily stimulus (e.g. crying out when a needle is stuck into you). The criteria for being in pain are how the subject feels, and the criteria for brain and behavioural events are what anyone could perceive. (90) (40) Personal note: I have a song stuck in my head. Can you tell me what it is? Unless I tell you, no amount of brain science, no matter how complex, could ever solve the mystery. A good example of Swinburne’s point. Mental and physical things (41) With these definitions it follows that no mental event is identical to or supervenes on any physical event. For no pure mental event is identical to or entails any (contingent) physical event involving the same substance, and so cannot supervene on any physical event, and so the same will apply to any impure mental event which includes the pure mental event. 2. Sensory events (92) (42) A conscious event is one of which necessarily the person whose event it is is aware or conscious while it occurs. A continuing mental state is an event which may occur while the person whose it is is not aware of it, but to which they have privileged access because that person has a way of becoming aware of it (by experiencing it) necessarily unavailable to others. Using these distinctions, I shall now proceed to describe the different kinds of pure mental events, and I shall delineate five different kinds of mental events which I will call ‘sensations’, ‘beliefs’, ‘thoughts’, ‘intentions’, and ‘desires’. 3. Propositional events (94) (43) Beliefs are by their very nature involuntary. Believing is something that happens to someone, not something that one does (97) (44) my definitions of (pure) mental events are crafted so as to include all and only those events to which the subject has privileged access (107) (45) A subject’s privileged access to his or her thoughts, desires, beliefs, etc. would remain, even if we were to discover that all such events as had been previously studied had been caused by brain events in accord with an apparent law-like regularity. For the subject could know about the causal relations so far established just as well as can anyone else, and yet on a new occasion he or she can know better than anyone else whether the law-like regularity continues to operate on this occasion also—in virtue of whether or not he or she is or can become aware of the thought, desire, or whatever, predicted by the law-like regularity. (109) 5. The errors of physicalism (116) (46)The alternative is to leave out the 'normal’ requirement and insist that any brain event with certain causes and certain effects outside the body is a mental event of a particular type. Then it looks as if such absurd results would follow as that any event caused by a bodily disorder and causing the subject to wince was a pain, and any brain event which caused the subject to hit someone was an intention to hit them; and so on. Yet we know that people often wince when they think that some medical intervention is going to cause pain, even when it doesn’t cause pain; and some people hit others unintentionally. (119)

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jesse

    Good methodology, but some mistakes along the way. First, he claims that artifacts are substances -- a claim that is incredibly tough to argue for. Second, he believes that the I is identical to a pure mental substance. I find his responses to the hylomorphic view lackluster.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Clayton Littlejohn

    I wrote a longer review here. The book has a number of flaws. The problem isn't that the views that Swinburne defends are implausible, it's that he adopts a problematic framework for discussing issues in the philosophy of mind, one that prevents him from formulating a coherent version of token physicalism. I don't think anyone actually working in the philosophy of mind will get much out of the book. I don't think it's written in such a way that it would provide a good entry into the literature f I wrote a longer review here. The book has a number of flaws. The problem isn't that the views that Swinburne defends are implausible, it's that he adopts a problematic framework for discussing issues in the philosophy of mind, one that prevents him from formulating a coherent version of token physicalism. I don't think anyone actually working in the philosophy of mind will get much out of the book. I don't think it's written in such a way that it would provide a good entry into the literature for non-specialists. My advice would be to skip this book entirely and read Helen Steward's work instead.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Jeffrey

    I view this book as supplemental to Swinburne's Evolution of the Soul. In this particular book, the author argues that human beings are soul's interacting with a physical body and that human beings have free will. Not my favorite work of his, pretty dry. I view this book as supplemental to Swinburne's Evolution of the Soul. In this particular book, the author argues that human beings are soul's interacting with a physical body and that human beings have free will. Not my favorite work of his, pretty dry.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Reitze

    Not a easy read, but impeccably structured. A wonderful contribution.

  7. 4 out of 5

    John

  8. 4 out of 5

    Pierce Marks

  9. 4 out of 5

    Kevin Ahimsa

  10. 4 out of 5

    Fanboy

  11. 5 out of 5

    Patrick

  12. 4 out of 5

    Santiago

  13. 4 out of 5

    André Neiva

  14. 4 out of 5

    Farryn

  15. 5 out of 5

    Ibraheem

  16. 4 out of 5

    Grant Morgan

  17. 4 out of 5

    Jacob Hill

  18. 5 out of 5

    Joshua Turnage

  19. 5 out of 5

    Crina Peterson

  20. 5 out of 5

    Nathan

  21. 5 out of 5

    Omar

  22. 5 out of 5

    Justin •••

  23. 4 out of 5

    Jimmy

  24. 5 out of 5

    Robert Boylan

  25. 5 out of 5

    Joseph Perez

  26. 5 out of 5

    J.W.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Brandon Rickabaugh

  28. 5 out of 5

    Constantin Apopei

  29. 4 out of 5

    Chen Ng

  30. 5 out of 5

    Sam Eccleston

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