Mind, Structure, and Contradiction

  • Gordon G. Globus


In working on the mind-brain problem over the last few years, I have become disheartened on occasion and come to the conclusion that western man is uniquely equipped and situated so as to make that problem unsolvable, even though it may be a rather simple problem indeed. As a scientist, I would like to hold philosophers responsible for this state of affairs! However, the roots appear to lie deeper than mere verbal obfuscation. As Freud pointed out, the Copernican revolution, the Darwinian revolution, and finally the psychoanalytic revolution—the latter being more of a quelled insurrection—all comprised narcissistic injuries to man, who had seen himself variously as the center of the universe, distinct from other forms of life, and consciously determining his own behavior. Perhaps to understand the mind-brain problem, we have to give up further narcissistic notions—that we are the only conscious form of life, that the world actually 2 is as we perceive it to be, indeed that we are in any nontrivial way distinct from the rest of the natural world. Those of you who have read the brilliant and extraordinary books of Carlos Castaneda (1969, 1971, 1973, 1974) which describe his apprenticeship to a Yaqui Indian sorcerer, don Juan, will appreciate the tenacity with which we, reared in a western philosophical and scientific paradigm, hold onto these narcissistic notions. In this regard, I find that the mystical paradigm has much to offer, when considering the mind-brain puzzle.


Structural Identity Blind Spot Perceptual Awareness Direct Acquaintance Copernican Revolution 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1976

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gordon G. Globus
    • 1
  1. 1.University of CaliforniaIrvineUSA

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