Saturday, March 23, 2019

I am not a mind-body dualist. I am, perhaps, a mind-heart dualist, but in a sense that does not involve mind-brain identity. I think it is as silly to think of the physical brain as the "seat of thinking" as it is to think of the physical heart as, say, "the seat of feeling".

The meaning of "mind" predates the discovery of lobes and cortices. The meaning of "heart" predates the discovery of chambers and ventricles. One must grant our feelings a "location" beneath the skin, however, just as our thinking does appear to go on "in the head". That is, I'm happy to maintain a distinction between visceral and cerebral experience. But these are just surfaces and appearances, not substances.

I believe that I have a soul, that I am "animated". But I do not think there is some place within the body that my soul can be said to inhabit. Rather, I believe that my body is my real location and that my soul is my ideal temperament. I live in a place and have a rhythm. My body, we might say, is where I'm at; my soul is what time it is.