Thursday 11 June 2009

The Global Spiral 10, 3 (July 2009)

The Global Spiral is an e-publication of Metanexus Institute, which claims to promote ‘a transdisciplinary approach to the most profound questions of nature, culture, and the human person’.

This issue of The Global Spiral contains the following articles…

Nancey Murphy
Is ‘Nonreductive Physicalism’ an Oxymoron

‘I had no adequate answer to the question: if humans are purely physical, then how can it fail to be the case that all of their thoughts and behavior are merely the product of the laws of neurobiology?… I believe that I now have the resources to provide an answer to the reductionists…’

Stewart Goetz
The Causal Closure Argument

‘I do not defend any form of materialism in this paper. Rather, I defend a commonsensical form of soul-body dualism in which souls make undetermined choices for purposes. I defend this commonsensical view of the world against an argument that is frequently used to undermine its truth. This is the argument from causal closure.’

Brian G. Henning
Swarms, Colonies, Flocks, and Schools: Exploring the Ontology of Collective Individuals

‘Contemporary research has… revealed that swarms of birds, fish, and insects are in fact leaderless systems more akin to a single living organism than a mere collection of individuals.’

Darren Abramson
Materialism, Mind, and Meaning: Warning, Spoilers Ahead

‘[A] physicalist understanding of the world threatens to make us think that there is only one story to tell about why things happen. I think that the computer theory of mind gives us a clear, unique way to see why this conclusion fails in some cases, including, possibly, the case of ourselves.’

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