more from William Lycan

Single Idea 5499

[catalogued under 17. Mind and Body / C. Functionalism / 5. Teleological Functionalism]

Full Idea

Some theorists have said that the one-to-one correspondence between the organism and parts of its 'program' is too liberal, and suggest that the state and its functional role are seen teleologically, as functioning 'for' the organism.


'Teleological' means having to do with purposes

Gist of Idea

A mental state is a functional realisation of a brain state when it serves the purpose of the organism


William Lycan (Introduction - Ontology [1999], p.9)

Book Reference

'Mind and Cognition (2nd Edn)', ed/tr. Lycan,William [Blackwell 1999], p.9

A Reaction

This seems an inevitable development, once the notion of a 'function' is considered. It has to be fitted into some sort of Aristotelian teleological picture, even if the functions are seen subjectively (by what?). Purpose is usually seen as evolutionary.