On 18 Nov 2013, at 15:36, Telmo Menezes wrote:

On Mon, Nov 18, 2013 at 3:31 PM, Bruno Marchal <marc...@ulb.ac.be> wrote:

On 18 Nov 2013, at 14:41, Roger Clough wrote:

Spinoza, Leibniz and Descartes are completely different on the relationship
between mind and matter See

http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/substance/#DesSpiLei

Spinoza was a monist, who believed that mind and matter were one.


Are you sure? It seems to me that Spinoza defended what is called today "neutral monism": the idea that both matter and mind (which are taken as
obviously very different) are coming from one different thing.
Computationalism is neutral monist in that sense, where the "different
thing" is the arithmetical reality.



Descartes believed that mind and matter are totally different


OK. But Descartes, imo, became aware of the depth of the rabbit hole this entails. It is hard to say, because Descartes was limited in his prose by
the authoritarianism of his epoch. I read him in between the lines.

Interesting. I always assumed that Descartes was oblivious to the
problems with dualism. But I really like his idea of starting with the
cogito.

I appreciate very much Descartes, mainly for his meditations (with the dream argument, and the cogito), and his unfinished text "in the search of truth". His dualism is coherent with his mechanism, except that he refers to God (but then it is close to Plotinus' theory of matter), instead of arithmetical truth (but of course he lacks Gödel's discovery). I don't think Descartes ever took the idea of a substance-dualism seriously. He might not be a dulaist in that sense. Of course the Aristotelians jumps on that "cartesian" dualist wagon, but when you read Descartes, you don't see evidence for such a dualism. With Plotinus (that Descartes seems to ignore), Descartes is close to computationalism both on mind and matter. He could have studied more his predecessors, if only to better argue. It is normal. Those who have genuine personal deep question always try to answer them by themselves (and they reinvent the wheel, here and there).

Bruno




http://iridia.ulb.ac.be/~marchal/



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