Next Article in Journal
Dynamic Rankings for Seed Selection in Complex Networks: Balancing Costs and Coverage
Previous Article in Journal
Application of the Fuzzy Oil Drop Model Describes Amyloid as a Ribbonlike Micelle
Previous Article in Special Issue
Situatedness and Embodiment of Computational Systems
Article Menu
Issue 4 (April) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Entropy 2017, 19(4), 169; doi:10.3390/e19040169

Where There is Life There is Mind: In Support of a Strong Life-Mind Continuity Thesis

1
Department of Philosophy, Faculty of Law, Humanities and the Arts, University of Wollongong, Wollongong 2500, Australia
2
Department of Computer Science, Research Institute for Applied Mathematics and Systems,National Autonomous University of Mexico, 04510 Mexico City, Mexico
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 22 February 2017 / Revised: 10 April 2017 / Accepted: 11 April 2017 / Published: 14 April 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Information-Processing and Embodied, Embedded, Enactive Cognition)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [260 KB, uploaded 18 April 2017]

Abstract

This paper considers questions about continuity and discontinuity between life and mind. It begins by examining such questions from the perspective of the free energy principle (FEP). The FEP is becoming increasingly influential in neuroscience and cognitive science. It says that organisms act to maintain themselves in their expected biological and cognitive states, and that they can do so only by minimizing their free energy given that the long-term average of free energy is entropy. The paper then argues that there is no singular interpretation of the FEP for thinking about the relation between life and mind. Some FEP formulations express what we call an independence view of life and mind. One independence view is a cognitivist view of the FEP. It turns on information processing with semantic content, thus restricting the range of systems capable of exhibiting mentality. Other independence views exemplify what we call an overly generous non-cognitivist view of the FEP, and these appear to go in the opposite direction. That is, they imply that mentality is nearly everywhere. The paper proceeds to argue that non-cognitivist FEP, and its implications for thinking about the relation between life and mind, can be usefully constrained by key ideas in recent enactive approaches to cognitive science. We conclude that the most compelling account of the relationship between life and mind treats them as strongly continuous, and that this continuity is based on particular concepts of life (autopoiesis and adaptivity) and mind (basic and non-semantic). View Full-Text
Keywords: life-mind continuity; free energy principle; radical enactivism; autopoietic enactivism life-mind continuity; free energy principle; radical enactivism; autopoietic enactivism
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

Scifeed alert for new publications

Never miss any articles matching your research from any publisher
  • Get alerts for new papers matching your research
  • Find out the new papers from selected authors
  • Updated daily for 49'000+ journals and 6000+ publishers
  • Define your Scifeed now

SciFeed Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Kirchhoff, M.D.; Froese, T. Where There is Life There is Mind: In Support of a Strong Life-Mind Continuity Thesis. Entropy 2017, 19, 169.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Entropy EISSN 1099-4300 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top