Chapter

Introduction

Keith Lehrer

in Metamind

Published in print June 1990 | ISBN: 9780198248507
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191681141 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198248507.003.0001
Introduction

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This book examines freedom, rational acceptance, social consensus, the analysis of knowledge, and Thomas Reid's philosophy of mind. What could possibly unify such a diverse collection of intellectual reflections? An idea about the human mind as a metamind, is the answer. Human freedom, rationality, consensus, knowledge, and conception depend on metamental operations and would not exist without such operations. It is useful to think of the role of the metamental in terms of a simplified computational model of the human mind. The model is a metaphor. The metaphor is a conjecture. The chapters in this book on freedom constitute a defence of compatibilism, that is, the thesis that human freedom is compatible with the claim that everything that occurs is caused or that there are antecedent sufficient conditions for everything that occurs, including human thought and action.

Keywords: freedom; social consensus; knowledge; Thomas Reid; metamind; rational acceptance; metamental operations; philosophy of mind; compatibilism

Chapter.  6916 words. 

Subjects: Metaphysics

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