Tag Archives: dualism

Scientists connect brain to internet

I recently came across this interesting article:
https://www.iflscience.com/brain/scientists-connect-human-brain-internet-first-time/

I found this quote interesting: “Ultimately, we’re aiming to enable interactivity between the user and their brain so that the user can provide a stimulus and see the response”. Descartes would be impressed at how well his separation of the self and the body has caught on. It is as if the self (or user) is an entity other than the brain and these scientists are going to connect the two entities.

Of course, the idea that the self is separate from the body is older than Descartes. He borrowed much of his Cogito from Augustine. And earlier thinkers held the same view. Perhaps they were right. Perhaps the self and the brain are separate entities. I have always thought so. In fact, that might explain how I happen to be here, still seeking wisdom after all these years.

But neuroscientists tell us that the brain and the self are the same thing. So, if they are right, the sentence should be worded as “we’re aiming to enable interactivity between the brain and the brain so that the brain can provide a stimulus and see the response”. But that wouldn’t capture our common sense notion of the self.

Cartesian language lives on.

— Socrates

Filed under Articles, Socrates' Meditations

Am I my body?

Meditations of a 21st century incarnation of Socrates as composed by Brent Silby


I am most fortunate, for I have many friends with whom I enjoy dialoguing. Recently I met Emma. My friend, Paul, introduced us and I now count her among my friends. Earlier today she and Paul invited me for coffee. As often happens, the topic of our talk moved towards an ultimate question, in this case: am I my body?

By the gods, this is a worthy question indeed. But it is not so easy to answer. Our dialogue was recorded and I will soon post the transcript here. In the meantime, good reader, I shall summarize our dialogue.
Continue reading

Filed under Articles, Socrates' Meditations