Place, U. T. (2004). From mystical experience to biological consciousness. A pilgrim's progress? In G. Graham, & E.R. Valentine (Eds.), Identifying the mind: Selected papers of U. T. Place (pp. 14-29). Oxford University Press.
[Abstract]I recount the history of a thought process leading from an adolescent interest in mystical experience to an article entitled 'Is consciousness a brain process?' in which I argued for an affirmative answer to that question. For the first time in recent history the materialist thesis was presented in a form in which it could withstand what had previously been regarded as decisive philosophical objections. The paper contains a critique of the "phenomenological fallacy" in which I draw attention to how little we can really say about the properties of our private experiences. This argument owes much to the insistence of the mystics on the inadequacy of words to describe their experiences.
Note:
This paper is published with minor editorial changes and without the abstract and the appendix in G. Graham and E. R. Valentine (Eds.) (2004). Identifying the Mind: Selected Papers of U. T. Place (pp. 14-29). Oxford University Press,. The paper was already finished in 1996. A shortened version was presented to the Mind and Brain symposium, organized by Dr. Peter Fenwick at the Institute of Psychiatry, London, in November 1996 and to the Eleventh Annual Conference of the British Psychological Society, History and Philosophy Section, York, March 1997. It was published under a different title and edited by Anthony Freeman including an editorial introduction and footnotes as Place, U. T. (2002). A pilgrim’s progress? Journal of Consciousness Studies. 9(3), 34-52.
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