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Mind and Brain

I feel comfortable with the idea of mind being a result of the brain. I've already pointed to a couple of books: Neurophilosophy and Astonishing Hypothesis about mind and brain, and I've had an e-mail exchange on the subject, which I've linked in my mailbag file.

I'm not entirely sure that equating mind and brain explains away souls, unless soul and mind are equated. I can't think of another reason to believe in souls, however.

What does "soul" solve?

What does soul solve if not the problem of explaining individuality? At this point, I'd guess, I've equated mind and individuality, perhaps wrongly. But I doubt it's wrong to equate individuality and mind. So, connecting the dots, souls, to be valid, must be individuality's cause without intervening brain states.

The books I've referenced address individuality too, however. Or, at least, that's my reading of them, but I have been known to, and have been aware that I, read more into a book or article than might be prudent.

I don't get it

I recently came across a theist's argument that the idea of the physicality of the mind is philosophically deterministic. "I can't help being this way" the argument would imply "my brain states make me this way."

Free thought is not impaired by assigning "mind" to brain states any more than assigning "mind" to soul states. Or, if they are so different, it is beyond me. Surely the equating of brain states and soul states is valid when discussing mental states...and wouldn't that mean that soulishness is just as deterministic?

created 6/29/00