Synonyms for emergentism or Related words with emergentism
Examples of "emergentism"
In philosophy, theories that emphasize emergent properties have been called
. Almost all accounts of
include a form of epistemic or ontological irreducibility to the lower levels.
There are two versions of
, the strong version and the weak version. Supervenience physicalism has been seen as a strong version of
, in which the subject's psychological experience is considered genuinely novel. Non-reductive physicalism, on the other side, is a weak version of
because it does not need that the subject's psychological experience be novel. The strong version of
is incompatible with physicalism. Since there are novel mental states, mental states are not nothing over and above physical states. However, the weak version of
is compatible with physicalism.
We can see that
is actually a very broad view. Some forms of
appear either incompatible with physicalism or equivalent to it (e.g. posteriori physicalism), others appear to merge both dualism and supervenience.
compatible with dualism claims that mental states and physical states are metaphysically distinct while maintaining the supervenience of mental states on physical states. This proposition however contradicts supervenience physicalism, which asserts a denial of dualism.
Samuel Alexander's views on
, argued in "Space, Time, and Deity" (1920), were inspired in part by the ideas in psychologist C. Lloyd Morgan's "Emergent Evolution". Alexander believed that emergence was fundamentally inexplicable, and that
was simply a "brute empirical fact":
strives to be compatible with physicalism, and physicalism, according to Kim, has a principle of causal closure according to which every physical event is fully accountable in terms of physical causes. This seems to leave no "room"
Rubio earned an MA in Philosophy of Science from the Metropolitan Autonomous University (UAM), Mexico. His thesis subject was "Reductionism and
in the Hypercycle Theory" (Reduccionismo y emergentismo en la teoría del hiperciclo).
(under the guise of non-reductive physicalism) as a solution to the mind-body problem Jaegwon Kim has raised an objection based on causal closure and overdetermination.
Ludwig von Bertalanffy founded General System Theory (GST), which is a more contemporary approach to
. A popularization of many of the elements of GST may be found in "The Web of Life" by Fritjof Capra.
All varieties of
strive to be compatible with physicalism, the theory that the universe is composed exclusively of physical entities, and in particular with the evidence relating changes in the brain with changes in mental functioning. Many forms of
, including proponents of complex adaptive systems, do not hold a material but rather a relational or processural view of the universe. Furthermore, they view mind–body dualism as a conceptual error insofar as mind and body are merely different types of relationships. As a theory of mind (which it is not always),
differs from idealism, eliminative materialism, identity theories, neutral monism, panpsychism, and substance dualism, whilst being closely associated with property dualism. It is generally not obvious whether an emergent theory of mind embraces mental causation or must be considered epiphenomenal.
No form of panpsychism attributes full, human-style consciousness to the fundamental constituents of the universe, therefore all versions need a certain amount of emergence—that is, "weak emergence", in which more sophisticated versions of basic properties emerge at a higher level. No version of panpsychism requires "strong emergence", in which high-level properties do not have any low-level precursors or basis, and instead emerge "from nothing". Indeed, avoidance of strong
is one of the motivations for panpsychism, while strong
, based on the reality of time, is the major argument against panpsychism.
is the idea that increasingly complex structures in the world give rise to the "emergence" of new properties that are something over and above (i.e. cannot be reduced to) their more basic constituents. The concept of emergence dates back to the late 19th century. John Stuart Mill notably argued for an emergentist conception of science in his 1843 "System of Logic".
Reviewing the strands of intellectual history that contributed to the global brain hypothesis, Francis Heylighen distinguishes four perspectives: "“organicism”", "“encyclopedism”", "“
”" and "“evolutionary cybernetics”". He asserts that these developed in relative independence but now are converging in his own scientific re-formulation.
His thinking embodies global systemism,
, rationalism, scientific realism, materialism and consequentialism. Bunge has repeatedly and explicitly denied being a logical positivist, and has written on metaphysics. In the political arena, Bunge has defined himself as a "left-wing liberal" and democratic socialist, in the tradition of John Stuart Mill and José Ingenieros.
Reductionism also does not preclude the existence of what might be called emergent phenomena, but it does imply the ability to understand those phenomena completely in terms of the processes from which they are composed. This reductionist understanding is very different from
, which intends that what emerges in "emergence" is more than the sum of the processes from which it emerges.
The problems found with
are often cited by panpsychists as grounds to reject physicalism. This argument can be traced back to the Ancient Greek philosopher Parmenides, who argued that "ex nihilo nihil fit" — nothing comes from nothing and thus the mental cannot arise from the non-mental.
The Composition of Causes was a set of philosophical laws advanced by John Stuart Mill in his watershed essay "A System of Logic". These laws outlined Mill's view of the epistemological components of
, a school of philosophical laws that posited a decidedly opportunistic approach to the classic dilemma of causation nullification.
A contrast to the reductionist approach is holism or
. Holism is the idea that things can have properties, (emergent properties), as a whole that are not explainable from the sum of their parts. The principle of holism was concisely summarized by Aristotle in the Metaphysics: "The whole is more than the sum of its parts".
is a form of "non-reductive physicalism" that involves a layered view of nature, with the layers arranged in terms of increasing complexity and each corresponding to its own special science. Some philosophers hold that emergent properties causally interact with more fundamental levels, while others maintain that higher-order properties simply supervene over lower levels without direct causal interaction. The latter group therefore holds a less strict, or "weaker", definition of
, which can be rigorously stated as follows: a property P of composite object O is emergent if it is metaphysically impossible for another object to lack property P if that object is composed of parts with intrinsic properties identical to those in O and has those parts in an identical configuration.
In his 1979 article "Panpsychism", Thomas Nagel tied panpsychism to the failure of
to deal with metaphysical relation: "There are no truly emergent properties of complex systems. All properties of complex systems that are not relations between it and something else derive from the properties of its constituents and their effects on each other when so combined." Thus he denies that mental properties can arise out of complex relationships between physical matter. Opposing Nagel, emergentist philosophers Roberto Mangabeira Unger in "The Religion of The Future" and Alexander Bard & Jan Söderqvist in "Syntheism - Creating God in The Internet Age" have argued that the reality of time enables complex systems to have truly emergent (as in irreversible and irreproducible) properties, thereby replacing any need for panpsychism with a chronocentric, strong
The mental aspects of such an organic system at the planetary level were perhaps first broadly elaborated by paleontologist and Jesuit priest Pierre Teilhard de Chardin. In 1945, he described a coming “planetisation” of humanity, which he saw as the next phase of accelerating human “socialisation”. Teilhard described both socialization and planetization as irreversible, irresistible processes of "macrobiological development" culminating in the emergence of a noosphere, or global mind (see
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