Ideas from 'The Problem of the Soul' by Owen Flanagan [2002], by Theme Structure

[found in 'The Problem of the Soul' by Flanagan,Owen [Basic Books 2003,0-465-02461-0]].

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1. Philosophy / A. Wisdom / 1. Nature of Wisdom
Philosophy needs wisdom about who we are, as well as how we ought to be
1. Philosophy / G. Scientific Philosophy / 1. Aims of Science
We resist science partly because it can't provide ethical wisdom
14. Science / A. Basis of Science / 4. Prediction
Explanation does not entail prediction
15. Nature of Minds / A. Nature of Mind / 3. Mental Causation
In the 17th century a collisionlike view of causation made mental causation implausible
15. Nature of Minds / B. Features of Minds / 3. Privacy
Only you can have your subjective experiences because only you are hooked up to your nervous system
16. Persons / B. Concept of the Self / 3. External Properties
We are not born with a self; we develop a self through living
16. Persons / B. Concept of the Self / 5. Persistence of Self
We only have a sense of our self as continuous, not as exactly the same
16. Persons / B. Concept of the Self / 6. Denial of the Self
For Buddhists a fixed self is a morally dangerous illusion
The self is an abstraction which magnifies important aspects of autobiography
16. Persons / F. Free Will / 1. Free Will / a. Nature of free will
Normal free will claims control of what I do, but a stronger view claims control of thought and feeling
Free will is held to give us a whole list of desirable capacities for living
16. Persons / F. Free Will / 1. Free Will / c. Free will critique
People believe they have free will that circumvents natural law, but only an incorporeal mind could do this
We only think of ourselves as having free will because we first thought of God that way
17. Mind and Body / A. Mind-Body Dualism / 8. Dualism of Mind Critique
People largely came to believe in dualism because it made human agents free
17. Mind and Body / B. Behaviourism / 4. Behaviourism Critique
Behaviourism notoriously has nothing to say about mental causation
17. Mind and Body / D. Property Dualism / 2. Anomalous Monism
Cars and bodies obey principles of causation, without us knowing any 'strict laws' about them
17. Mind and Body / E. Physicalism / 3. Eliminativism
Physicalism doesn't deny that the essence of an experience is more than its neural realiser
18. Thought / A. Modes of Thought / 3. Emotions
Emotions are usually very apt, rather than being non-rational and fickle
20. Action / B. Motives for Action / 3. Acting on Reason / b. Intellectualism
Intellectualism admires the 'principled actor', non-intellectualism admires the 'good character'
22. Metaethics / B. Basis of Ethics / 2. Moral Theory
Cognitivists think morals are discovered by reason
Ethics is the science of the conditions that lead to human flourishing
23. Ethics / B. Contract Ethics / 2. Golden Rule
For Hobbes the Golden Rule concerns not doing things, whereas Jesus encourages active love
29. Religion / B. Polytheistic Religion / 1. Hinduism
The Hindu doctrine of reincarnation only appeared in the eighth century CE
29. Religion / E. Immortality / 2. Soul
The idea of the soul gets some support from the scientific belief in essential 'natural kinds'