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Zeno's metrical paradox of extension and Descartes' mind-body problem


Ferber, Rafael (2010). Zeno's metrical paradox of extension and Descartes' mind-body problem. In: Giombini, Stefania; Marcacci, Flavia. Il quinto secolo. Studi di filosofia antica in onore di Livio Rossetti. Passignano s.T.: Aguaplano, 295-310.

Abstract

The article uses Zeno’s metrical paradox of extension, or Zeno’s fundamental paradox, as a thought-model for the mind-body problem. With the help of this model, the distinction contained between mental and physical phenomena can be formulated as sharply as possible. I formulate (I) Zeno’s fundamental paradox and give a sketch of four different solutions to it. Then (II) I construct a mind-body paradox corresponding to the fundamental paradox. Through that, it becomes possible (III) to copy the solutions to the fundamental paradox on the mind-body paradox. Three of them fail. But (IV) one of them – the Aristotelian one – gives us an interesting hint. Finally, (V) this hint is pursued somewhat further and (VI) through comparison with Zeno’s fundamental paradox, the impossibility of a solution to the mind-body problem is shown again. The main new point of this article is the comparison of the mind-body problem with Zeno’s fundamental paradox. The article is a revised version of an article published in: Méthexis, Revista Internacional de Filosofia Antigua/International Journal for Ancient Philosophy, 13, 2000, 139-151.

The article uses Zeno’s metrical paradox of extension, or Zeno’s fundamental paradox, as a thought-model for the mind-body problem. With the help of this model, the distinction contained between mental and physical phenomena can be formulated as sharply as possible. I formulate (I) Zeno’s fundamental paradox and give a sketch of four different solutions to it. Then (II) I construct a mind-body paradox corresponding to the fundamental paradox. Through that, it becomes possible (III) to copy the solutions to the fundamental paradox on the mind-body paradox. Three of them fail. But (IV) one of them – the Aristotelian one – gives us an interesting hint. Finally, (V) this hint is pursued somewhat further and (VI) through comparison with Zeno’s fundamental paradox, the impossibility of a solution to the mind-body problem is shown again. The main new point of this article is the comparison of the mind-body problem with Zeno’s fundamental paradox. The article is a revised version of an article published in: Méthexis, Revista Internacional de Filosofia Antigua/International Journal for Ancient Philosophy, 13, 2000, 139-151.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Book Section, refereed, further contribution
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Philosophy
Dewey Decimal Classification:100 Philosophy
Language:English
Date:October 2010
Deposited On:07 Feb 2011 07:56
Last Modified:11 May 2016 12:24
Publisher:Aguaplano
ISBN:978-88-904213-4-1
Official URL:http://www.aguaplano.eu/index.php?content=Vsecolo
Related URLs:http://www.aguaplano.eu (Publisher)
Permanent URL: https://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-44255

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