What Makes A Mind? Essay

What Makes A Mind? Essay

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Earlier this semester, we discussed the differences of what has a mind and what does not. My evidence of having a mind was that if something was able to make decisions and act on instinct, it had a mind, not a systemized process. Therefore, animals and humans have minds, but machines do not. In doing more reflection and through progressing in this class, I think I have changed my perspective of this. I do not think it is fair to classify all animals as having a mind. Different animals have different levels of intelligence, such as an ape that can perform sign language and handle its own pet compared to a fish in an aquarium. I no longer think it is fair to generalize all animals as equally mindful, especially when you consider all theories we discussed.
I had previously used my dog Maggie as an example of an animal with intelligence and a “definite” mind. Since she greets me at my front door and is able to make her own decisions, I believed that she was acting through making decisions, proving she had her own mind. However, I now understand more about the definition of having a mind. My dog simply follows the ideology of behaviorism. This is the perception of psychology that states that the individual is acting out of known behaviors that was taught to it. My dog started out as a puppy and needed to be trained. Through positive reinforcement and a lot of doggie treats, we taught her to greet us at the door and what time she is fed dinner. Though it is not a mechanized process, it is still a feedback that is generated from humans. This satisfies the requirements in this theory to say that she has a mind.
On the other hand, my phone has been systemized to know where I am going or what music I like to listen to. This again is a feed...


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...ng to see how an individual in a more controlled society would define responsibility or freedom, especially in a Communistic society. I believe that we as humans deserve to have the freedom to do what we want, but as humans also should take it upon ourselves to have the responsibility to do what is right. This is what Sartre tells us, and I do agree with him. He understood that responsibilities outweigh our freedoms. There may be times that we have pressures to bend to conformity, but we if we do not hold onto our responsibility, we become followers. I do not want to be a follower. I want to be the one to lead my life. I do not want other people thinking for me. If I allow that, what is the point of being human? My freedom to do whatever I want, knowing the responsibility of what to do, and having the mind to think and change are the greatest gifts we have as humans.

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What Makes A Mind? Essay

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