Materialism is a world view of philosophy, according to which the material is the ontologically initial onset (as the reason, requirement) and ideal – as a secondary (result, consequence). Materialism says that the existence of one single, absolute substantia of being – material, where all the essences were made of material, and the ideal phenomena are the processes of interactions between the material essences. The rules of material world are spread all over the entire human world and its society. The term of materialism was invented by Gottfried Leibniz, with which he characterized his opponents.
Dualism is a world view of philosophy, according to which the material and ideal are both equivalent, but it doesn’t recognize their relativity. Philosophy of mind says, that dualism is the dualism of body and soul, the point of view according to which mind and material show themselves as two equivalent and complementary essences. Founders of dualism are Aristotle and Descartes. Material and ideal are differ at their fundamental properties. Material things take their main positions in space; they have their own shape, often characterized by weight when the ideal phenomena are subjective and international.
The other form of dualism, not recognizing existence of the special spiritual substance is the duality of qualities. According to the duality of qualities, there is no spiritual essence; but there is a brain as a material forming, which has its unique and special properties (qualities) which generate some psychic phenomena.
I believe in dualism, because as I think humans are made up of a physical body and a nonphysical “mind” or “soul”.
Descartes’ Dualism is based on the most famous philosophical work – Meditations of First Philosophy. During the Sixth Meditation, Descartes calls the mind a thing which thinks, and isn’t the extended thing. He defines that the body is an extended thing and not the thing that thinks. Descartes’ separated the meaning of mind and body and proceed to state his doctrine. His main idea was that the body is not the thing which is supposed to think, the body is the extended thing; while the mind is the thing which thinks. According to these words, the mind and the body can’t exist as the separate meanings. Only if mind and body gathered together the result can be the thinking alive human.
His main arguments were:
- The Argument From Indivisibility
In this argument Descartes primarily made justification of the distinction of mind and body. He says that there is a big difference between a mind and a body, because the body is divisible, and the mind plainly isn’t. The author argues that the mind is indivisible because of its extension lack. For example, the body can always be divided, when the mind can’t be divided because it is simple and non-spatial. Since these two different things have different attributes, they mustn’t be the same thing, and that’s why their unity notwithstanding.
- Issues, raised by the Indivisibility argument.
John Locke suggested that the mind can’t exhibit temporal discontinuity and also have thought as its essence. But even if Descartes was wrong, the concept of mind is still not reduced to vacuity if some other characteristic can be found to define it. Against Locke, Dualists can argue in many ways. For example:
- Dualists argue that the soul always thinks, but the memory fails to preserve those thoughts then asleep or under anesthesia.
- The Argument From Indubitability
Descartes’ argument for dualism derives from epistemological considerations. After taking his method of doubt, Descartes finds that the physical world isn’t entirely certain. He still cannot doubt his own existence, since he must exist to doubt. As a result, Descartes’ thinks himself as a non-bodily “thinking thing”.
This argument exists in philosophical literature from the very beginning. The most famous was the comment of Arnauld, published with the Meditations.
- The Real Distinction Argument
This argument maintains that the mind and body must be separated, because Descartes can conceive of the one without the other. According to it, the mind and body can exist independently.
As for me, I believe in dualism, because I doubt that the body can do everything on its own. Body must be something like the defense shell of mind, to protect it from any harm or damage from the outer world. As for me, Descartes’ arguments are legit enough, and I agree with the most of it. But I critically disagree that the body can fully live without the mind. It isn’t living being without its thoughts, morale and other. The body without soul is something even worse than animals. Animals, at least have their reflexes, special behavior, when the soulless body loses everything. Well, it can exist, but what is the real reason to exist, it you can’t think?