Essay about Dualism and Artificial Intelligence

Essay about Dualism and Artificial Intelligence

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Mind-body dualism is usually seen as the central issue in philosophy of the mind. The problem with mind-body dualism is that it is unknown whether the mind really is a separate entity from the human body as Descartes states in his argument, or whether the mind is the brain itself. Descartes believed that in a person existed two major components, the physical body and the nonphysical body which was called the mind or soul. As a scientist, Descartes believed in mechanical theories of matter, however, he was also very religious and did not believe people could merely be mechanical creatures that ran like “clockwork.” And so, it was Descartes who argued that the mind directed thoughts. To account for this, he split the world into two parts, the scientific world and the mental world. The scientific world was all that was physical, like the human body. The mental world was the mind which could not be seen or touched. Thus, mind-body dualism was created. If the mind could not be seen or touched, how could it possibly interact with the human body and so, how do we know if it even exists? Also, how would we know if other minds exist if we cannot make contact with other minds? Questions like these are what made Descartes’ version of dualism improbable and led to different theories of the mind such as physicalism, which is the belief that the mind is just a result of brain states such as nerve impulses in certain areas of the brain.
If Dualism is true and minds are nonphysical, then it is impossible for us to make contact with the minds of others. We assume that if another person behaves in the same manner as us, then they must have a mind. This could be troublesome because according to Turing, machines may soon be able to mimic human beha...

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...ers, which would be highly likely. If the AI’s were used in this way, would it not count as slavery since the AI’s would have minds? In an episode of Star Trek, called Data, a man wants to disassemble an automaton which had artificial intelligence to learn how to recreate and mass produce it. By mass producing the automaton, he wants to create an army of the AI’s to use in dangerous missions which would save human lives but put the AI’s at risk. This example again shows how AI’s would be forced to fight for the human race at their own risk.
The possibility of AI also questions people’s religious beliefs. If an AI has a mind and a consciousness, then whether or not the AI have souls according to religious belief would have to be pondered. If it is decided that the AI have souls, then would they have the chance to get into heaven or any other form of the afterlife?

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