Phantoms in the Brain by V.S. Ramachadran

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V.S. Ramachandran’s Phantoms in the Brain is a well-written book for what he believes to be the causes for some neurological theories and mysteries. He covers many syndromes such as Phantom Limb syndrome, the Capgras Delusion, Cotard’s Syndrome, Hemi-neglect, Blind-sight, Motion blindness, Anosognosia, multi-personality disorder, and the Zombie with in each of us. When he talks about these syndromes he is arguing for the theory of not having a soul because it is not physically tangible and using the neurological theory of consciousness to prove said argument. Though there is a theory of the soul he consistently proves that there is no such thing as a soul that we can physically obtain in our world. So, the question is, do souls exist or are they a figment of imagination and a coping mechanism for humans? Souls do not exist because whether one believes in them or not, they cannot physically be dealt with in the real world as shown through patients with Phantom Limb Syndrome, Capgras Delusion, and Blind-sight syndrome. Phantom Limb Syndrome is when a patient has lost a limb, such as a body part (organs), an arm or leg, but can still feel the presents of the limb and is “able” to continue functions with the arm because of the presents of the phantom. This syndrome can be caused by losing a limb in a tragic accident or by being born without a limb or limbs. When people are born without the limb or limbs and have this syndrome it can be described as wishful thinking or by having a soul. Wishful thinking is where the person wishes that they have the syndrome but they actually do not even if they are showing the signs of having the syndrome. This sort of thinking can be shown in the case of John McGrath who was an arm amputee that had co... ... middle of paper ... ...e he is not conscious and is thus not responsible for his actions. Even though he is unable to do many of these things he is still able to function in the world and complete tasks. He just will not have any memory of doing said tasks when he gets back to being conscious. Blind-sight is when the patient is legally blind but can perform tasks of everyday life as if they were able to see perfectly. (not able to see but are able to perform tasks as if they are able to see, zombie?) Soul Theory objections and defense (Pg22) Psychological Theory objections and defense (pg66) Neurological Theory objections and defense (consciousness) My evaluation and argument for which explanation deserves the right of hegemony Conclusion Works Cited Ramachandran, V. S., and Sandra Blakeslee. Phantoms in the Brain: Probing the Mysteries of the Human Mind. New York: Quill, 1999. Print.

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