What is the nature of mind

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Is a scientific explanation of our mind possible? The new book 'The Nature of Mind' by the renowned philosopher Michael Pauen answers this question. The "Decade of the Brain" is long gone, but an explanation of the mind seems more distant than ever. So do we have to come to terms with the fact that consciousness can never be explained? Michael Pauen explains in his new book that the problem can be solved. The history of research shows that our ideas of mind and brain have changed profoundly again and again. Even if the problem in its present form were unsolvable - we cannot say that for the future. This is especially true for the seemingly insurmountable contrast between subjective experience and objective scientific knowledge. This enables a comprehensive naturalistic understanding of the mind - and a surprising solution is emerging.

Review note on Die Zeit, 09/15/2016

Leo Schwarz read Michael Pauen's "Natur des Geistes" with interest. How the Berlin philosopher investigates the question of what we can actually know about our inner being, questioning Descartes' assumption that looking inward cannot be wrong and using psychological experiments to explain that introspective knowledge of one's own experience is a cognitive process and therefore just as error-prone what other human cognitive processes are like seems brilliant to the critic in the argument. After reading it, however, the reviewer has the feeling that Pauen's distinction between subjective experience and introspective knowledge has only conceptually shifted the problem, but not solved it.

Review note on Neue Zürcher Zeitung, June 15, 2016

Hard stuff. It's about nothing less than the mind-body or mind-body problem, explains reviewer Michael Stallknecht, but Michael Pauen manages to develop his topic "with the greatest clarity" and to test his arguments with counter-arguments. Among other things, he posed the tricky and classic question of whether a sensible bat with its completely different sensorium could understand what it means to see colors. Against the "knowledge gap theorists", Pauen answered this question with yes. One should not confuse experience with knowledge - this can certainly be reconstructed. Fortunately, states the reviewer, Pauen is not one of those progressive philosophers who would prefer to see their chair replaced by a "post for a brain researcher". Obviously, philosophy can add something to this debate. Stallknecht gives a clear reading recommendation.

Review note on Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, June 7, 2016

After reading Michael Pauen's "Natur des Geistes", reviewer Philipp Hübl tries to be even more sensitive to the distinction between empirical knowledge and introspection. Because in the clever book by the Berlin philosopher, which is based on numerous psychological and neuroscientific studies, the critic learns from various examples to trust the external as well as the internal perspective. The book, which is divided into a historical, a systematic and an empirical chapter, may not always be understandable for the ignorant, but it does make it clear how important empirical research and the collaboration of philosophers and natural scientists is for future consciousness research, the reviewer concludes.
Read the review at buecher.de