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The Mind and the Machine - pr_63847

The Mind and the Machine

What It Means to Be Human and Why It Matters



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Are humans just complex biochemical machines, mere physical parts of a causally closed materialist universe? Are we approaching the so-called 'Singularity', when human consciousness can (and will) be downloaded into computers? Or is there more to the human person - something that might be known as 'soul' or 'spirit'? As this book makes clear, the answers to these questions have profound implications to topics such as heroism, creativity, ecology, and the possibility of reason and science. In exploring this important topic, Dickerson engages the ideas of some well-known twentieth- and twentyfirst-century espousers of physicalism, including the philosopher Daniel Dennett, the biologist Richard Dawkins, the futurist-engineer Raymond Kurzweil, the psychologist B.F. Skinner, and the mathematician-philosopher Bertrand Russell. Through a careful reading of their works, Dickerson not only provides a fivefold critique of physicalism but also offers a Christian alternative in the form of 'integrative dualism', which affirms the existence of both a physical and a spiritual reality without diminishing the goodness or importance of either, and acknowledges that humans are spiritual as well as bodily persons.

Product code: 9780718894924

ISBN 9780718894924
Publisher James Clarke & Co Ltd
Dimensions (HxWxD in mm) H229xW153xS13
No. Of Pages 240
A critique of the dominant physicalist paradigm of the mind, offering an alternative that places the bodily and the spiritual on an equal footing.