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Ryles Refutation of the Metaphysical Doctrine Rene Descartes holds a dualist view that the mind and body are two totally separate entities In response to this Gilbert Ryle has published an article showing that the argument and its premises of Descartes Metaphysical Doctrine are incorrect He does not show the premises themselves to be individually false but instead shows that Descartes has simply made an error in his conceptualizations of the mind and body In this paper I will show that Ryles analysis of the Metaphysical Doctrine and it faults is correct In addition his arguments against the premises of the Doctrine are accurate and effective Ryle believes that Descartes has simply made a category error in trying to explain the relationship between the mind and the body A category error occurs when an individual is unable to grasp a larger concept and understand simple terminology For example a person may look at a closet full of clothes yet still be unable to understand the idea of the wardrobe He may see all the shirts and pants hanging and all the shoes stacked up but still be unable to see where the wardrobe is This person has not grasped the concept that the wardrobe is not a separate tangible item but is the entire organization of the closet itself Descartes has made a similar category error in assuming that the mind and body must be separate items Ryle shows that although the two cannot be spoken of in the same manner they are still interrelated Because as is true a persons thinking feeling and purposive doing cannot be described solely in the idioms of physics chemistry and physiology therefore they must be described in counterpart idioms pp54 The argument for Descartes Doctrine is as follows 1No one thing can have incompatible essential properties 2The mind is essentially indivisible 3The body is divisible 4Divisibility and indivisibility are incompatible properties 5Therefore the mind and
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