The body

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We are having a fairly substantial thunder-storm at the moment. Which is a pity because I was just getting into the swing of weeding my garden for half an hour after I got home from work.

I have finally finished the chapter on the other and moved onto the rather strange subject of the body. In particular Sartre is looking at the problem of how the mind and body are connected. The reason that I find it strange is because he seems to think that there are things about your body that you can’t really know. Though perhaps talking about knowing is not really correct. I think what he is saying is that while you can deduce that you have a heart from other people’s anatomy, or watch a scan being done which shows your heart beating that kind of knowledge is not the same as the way you experience your heart, if you do at all. They are different kinds of knowing. Now I think about it, it is probably not so strange after all. It’s funny how sometimes when you try to write about something it becomes clearer.

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4 responses »

  1. It’s hard to resist embracing Cartersian Dualism sometimes: the mind and body seem such disparate things.

    I love Sartre. He has the gift of casually shredding one’s certainty without causing the kind of vertigo that usually accompanies such epiphanies.

    • I agree. Scientifically it is so easy to say that mind is brain activity but from the point of view of experience dualism makes total sense. I don’t know that I am willing to abandon the scientific world view just yet, maybe find a way to balance the two?.

  2. Pingback: The body (via Being, Nothingness and 1000 quilt blocks) | Dan McCormick

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