Functionalism and the Irrelevance of the Intrinsic Nature of the States in Question

Functionalism and the Irrelevance of the Intrinsic Nature of the States in Question

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–2. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Functionalism and the Irrelevance of the Intrinsic Nature of the States in Question A key point to keep in mind in understanding functionalism is that what makes a given inner state a mental state of some particular type - such as a state of believing that unicorns have never existed - is simply a matter of how the state in question is related to stimulation of the individual and to the individual's behavioral responses: the intrinsic properties of the inner state are irrelevant; any state that occupies the same role will be precisely the same sort of mental state. So from the point of view of functionalism, it could turn out that the mind is identical with the brain, and mental states are identical with states of the brain. But equally, it could turn out that the mind is some sort of immaterial, Cartesian soul or substance, and that mental states are states of such an immaterial substance. Interrelationships are everything , as far as the nature of the mental is concerned. The Computer Program Analogy
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Image of page 2
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

Page1 / 2

Functionalism and the Irrelevance of the Intrinsic Nature of the States in Question

This preview shows document pages 1 - 2. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online