Dualism And Epiphenomenalism

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Being that the mind is physical, there must be some aspects of consciousness that can be reduced. The reducible qualities of consciousness include the functional aspects of the brain—behavior, information processing, reaction to stimuli, etc. On the other hand, there is the subjective experience that arises from these physical processes. Can the subjective part of consciousness be explained by physical processes? I do not think that is possible. In this paper, I will be defending that physical events within the brain explain the functional parts of consciousness, while also producing the subjective experiences—qualia—as a consequence. I will be defending the property dualist idea of epiphenomenalism. But what is epiphenomenalism in terms of…show more content…
His argument criticizes physicalism; he claims that even if all physical knowledge is explained or known, there is still the question of experience. Jackson refers to these subjective, non-physical properties—experience—as qualia (Jackson). Qualia must be the consequence of the physical processes that Mary studied in Jackson’s knowledge argument. Jackson’s argument solely concludes that non-physical properties exist, but he does not argue how qualia affect the physical world (Jackson). There are two views that a property dualist can take from Jackson’s conclusions: qualia come from physical processes and can have an effect on the physical world or that qualia are a result of physical processes but do not affect the physical world. The second view is…show more content…
One principle in particular that is being contradicted is the conservation of energy. If non-physical properties are capable of interacting with and having an impact on the physical world, that would mean that there was an external source of energy used to make the interactions occur. An additional source of energy would violate the law of conservation of energy in physical science, which states that energy cannot be created nor destroyed (Urone). I am aware of arguments that may arise from discussion of different physical laws, specifically conservation of energy, such as: Do Subjective things require energy to occur or is it only needed to create physical processes and objective things? Even though there is no satisfactory answer at this point in time, it is important to note that it is possible that the non-physical properties of physical processes may arise from a distribution of the objective material’s energy. Due to the subjectivity of properties such as qualia, it is plausible that these non-physical events transpire from the energy used to create interactions of the physical events themselves. If this is true, it would not be valid to say subjective experience has an effect on physical processes, because non-physical properties do not necessarily interact with each other, creating any energy. This too would go against the law of conservation of

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