Self-Perception, Levels of Organization, and the Mind–Body Relation

James D. Laird

in Feelings

Published in print January 2007 | ISBN: 9780195098891
Published online April 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780199893614 | DOI:

Series: Series in Affective Science

Self-Perception, Levels of Organization, and the Mind–Body Relation

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This chapter looks at one set of implications that flow from the hierarchical systems theory, a conception of how mind and body are related that seems to avoid most of the problems of dualism and simple forms of materialism. Most of the mysteries of mind dissolve when the smooth progression of levels between the prototypically physical and prototypically mental are recognized. Of course, the hierarchical levels-of-organization perspective also leads to our starting place, self-perception theory. The levels-of-organization perspective has some other attractive implications. One of these is to locate the many sub-disciplines of psychology (and indeed all sciences) relative to each other and, in the process, with any luck, legitimize each to the others. Another attractive implication of the levels-of-organization view is that it may shift our search for the explanation of human actions to new and potentially more fertile ground.

Keywords: self-perception theory; levels-of-organization perspective; mind; body

Chapter.  13691 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Cognitive Psychology

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