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On Moral and Ethics - Essay Example

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On Moral and Ethics

The mind-body problem according to Descartes the human bodies were likened to machinery that worked on their own rules taking no lead from anything else. This he explained giving an example of the involuntary actions that make the body get into action. He pointed out the reflex action of a human being could not have included the mind since the external stimuli activate the nerve ending of the body and force them to act. However, although the body was free, there were situations where the mind worked as a lever exerting pressure on the body to make it bend to the demands of the mind. According to Descartes, the body was physical, could be influenced by other material properties while the mind was non-physical, and, therefore, did not fall prey of any natural laws. Rene attributed the interaction of the body and the mind to the pineal gland found in the brain, as this is not duplicated in the other side of the brain and, therefore, provided a unifying factor in the interaction. He believed this interaction made it possible for the mind to exert influence over the body and make it act in a certain way. He also stated that the body was also capable of influencing the mind, which is rather rational, and forcing it into action through an act of passion.
Following the assertions made by Descartes, Hobbes disagreed on the aspect of the immaterial mind and sates that the mind is made up of sense, imagination, and the working of language and it does not consist of any other rational characteristic other than these. (Marmysz 180). According to Hobbes, all the ideas that human beings experience are resultant from our senses directly or indirectly, he explains how our thoughts work through the formation of ideas and a comprehensive look at sensations and the workings of imagination. Hobbes denies the existence of an immaterial mind and attempts to solve the mind-body problem through the philosophy of language. Hobbes attempts to solve the problem led him to come up with the signification theory, where he explains that, for example, in naming man introduces a mark in his mind to bring a conception concerning the item on which it is imposed to help him in the association process. He, therefore, states that naming is a way of putting marks on the memory (Marmysz 180). In his works, he states that aspects of language are arbitrary and conventional, through this he fails to explain how then the marks for memory used in naming are able to be constant with different languages as Descartes pointed out when countering Hobbes views (Broughton and Carriero 18). The most plausible approach is that of Rene Descartes who views the mind and the body being different. This is because of the reflex theory, which he used to show the ‘mechanism’ of the human body. It also explains why a reasonable man can be detached from his rationale mind and act in passion and later end up regretting his actions. Ruth Benedict was an anthropologist who stated that morality is fully dependent on cultures and traditions from the community one comes from or in which one is born. Through this premise, she became part of the scholars who supported moral relativism (Ambrose and Cross 152). As so, she further states that there is no existence of a transcendent culture, and that makes what could be wrong in one culture, correct in another culture. Benedicts found that many traditional societies were focused on community-centered values since they did not interact much with people from other cultures. This meant that in the event that they met an abnormal act ...Show more


The researcher of this descriptive essay mostly focuses on the discussion of the topic of Moral and Ethics and analyzing the issue of the mind–body problem that is an important aspect in philosophy, which seeks to understand the relationship between the mind and body…
Author : federicoharvey
Essay on Moral and Ethics essay example
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