20 May 2013

Minds, brains and woo.

Mind is not a redundant concept.  I'm with Andrew Brown in this short piece from the Guardian (17 June 2011), 'Mind, brains and woo.'  Here's the ending:
There is something very odd about the idea that the mind is an illusion that a brain has about itself (which is what is implied in a lot of this talk). Illusions are themselves things that only minds can have. An illusion, or a delusion, demands that there is a subjectivity being deluded. If a Buddhist says that the world is an illusion, at least they are being consistent, in that they suppose the ultimate reality is more like a mind – the kind of thing that can have an illusion or can be deluded. But no one can fool a rock, or a computer. Why should a brain be different? 

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