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PHIL 1301 Introduction to Philosophy

Published : 16-Oct,2021  |  Views : 10


1. Explain why a dualist might argue that, even if it fooled an outside observer into thinking that it was conscious, a computer would still lack the conscious awareness that a person has. Your answers should draw on the assigned reading material (René Descartes, Thomas Hobbes, John Searle, Alan Turing, and Jonathan Bennett); however, while you do need to be familiar with their work, you do not need to discuss all five in your essay.
2. Explain David Hume’s skepticism concerning casualty. Convince your reader that Hume’s analysis of cause and effect is sound.
3. Using your examples to illustrate, convince your reader that Hobbes is correct that desire and aversion do away with free will.


1. The concept of dualism entails that there consist two essential sets of ideologies in a certain realm. In philosophy of cognizance, dualism is a principle that states that the somatic and spiritual are fundamentally different things

Throughout history, a number of philosophers have tried to argue and come up with various ways of describing the concept of dualism (Searle, 23). Rene Descartes, a more topical and recent dualist had a theory that there existed two sets of elements: mind, whose fundamental property is that it reasons and matter, whose basic property is its three-dimensional extension. Descartes viewpoint was more mechanical about substance properties; he believed that bodies are engines that work in accordance with their specific laws with the exception where the mind affects it. Apparently, the mind acted like a lever to a machine, which is the body that already has its operational codes. He argues that truly the mind does control the body, but the body is fully capable of prompting the coherent mind as is the case of crimes of passion (Baker & Katherine, 7).

Thomas Hobbes, another well-renowned philosopher, argued that motion is the foundation of all consequence but one general cause which is the outcome of all cause.

According to Alan Turing, the concept of machines being capable of thinking on their volition is too insubstantial and superficial even to be considered. Turing developed a test widely known as the Turing test where machines (digital computers) took part in a game he developed called The Imitation Game. The test would induce interactive tests for the manifestation of thought and intellect in entities which are artificial. (Turning 487)

A dualist would argue that even if a machine closely resembled a human to the extent that one was inclined to believe a machine was indeed a fellow human, the machine would still not be able to act like real men. Descartes, for instance, argued that even if a machine did something as well as humans did or possibly even much better, it would abysmally fail in other activities. That would show that they do not act upon their consideration and thoughtfulness but rather from the predisposition of their structures (Rozemond, 3). According to him, reason was the universal mechanism for which all circumstances were acted upon and that a machine could not possibly have enough parts in its structure to perform in all likelihoods in life the same exact way our human reason makes us act.

2. David Hume defined casualty as; a thing precedent and adjacent to one more and thus linked that the notion of one governs the brain to come up with the inkling of another and the impression of one to create a more dynamic perception of the other. From Hume's point of view, one is able to form notions based on simple imitations in three methods; contiguity, similarity, and cause, and effect (Hume, 49). Hume described casualty as a systematic succession of happenings in that; one thing perpetually causes another. He argued that there existed no insight of the hypothetical necessary association between cause and effect (Fosl, 4). As individuals, we cannot validate our expectations of the imminent by founding it on preceding experiences, not unless there exists a rule that the impending will continually be similar to history. We have no reason to thus believe in causation as our lifestyles are the source of our hypotheses about the future and eventually our assumptions on factual matters root from probability. We can refute the connection between the past and the future without conflict, and we cannot substantiate it with familiarity.
3. Hobbes looked at the unpremeditated elements that lead to intentional movements, the movements that ultimately developed into focused actions and defines them such as unpremeditated elements as imaginations. Hobbes wrote that the miniature early stages of motion in a man’s figure even before they become visible in talking, walking and beating amongst other actions is called endeavor. He states that when one endeavor to do something it's defined as desire, and when one endeavor to not do something, it's referred to as aversion (Hood, 7). To say that a person has free will is to say that a person has the ability to decide their path of action. For instance consider a lady, Beatrice, who is contemplating an archetypical deed such as if to clean her house. Her thoughts will be that, “I should clean the house because it is dirty and while I might be a little too tired and lazy to attend to it, the best decision would be to clean the house as it will be more comfortable to stay in.’’ Beatrice must first decide to clean the house before actually cleaning it (Bennett, 14). Hobbes would hold that Beatrice is free to clean her house so long as nothing forces her to clean the house if she decides not to. However, most of our human actions emanate from our need to do or not to do things which eliminate the possibility of free will. 

Works Cited

Baker, Gordon P, and Katherine, Morris. Descartes' dualism. Psychology Press, 2002.

Bennett, Jonathan. Thoughtful Brutes. 1988. Print.

Rozemond, Marleen, and Marleen Rozemond. Descartes's dualism. Harvard University Press, 2009.

Fosl, Peter. "Cavell and Hume on Skepticism, Natural Doubt, and the Recovery of the Ordinary." Conversations: The Journal of Cavellian Studies 3 (2015).

Hume, David. An inquiry concerning human understanding. Ed. Charles William Hendel. Vol. 49. Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill, 1955.

Hood, Francis Campbell. "The divine politics of Thomas Hobbes: an interpretation of Leviathan." (1966).

Turing, Alan, et al. "Can automatic calculating machines be said to think? (1952)." B. Jack Copeland (2004): 487.

Turing, Allan. “Computing Machinery and Intelligence.” Mind 49: 433-460. 1950 Searle, John. Minds, Brains, and Computers. California: University of California Press. 1992. Print

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