Asian Philosophy 11 (1):5 – 14 (2001)

Associated with the successful development of computer technology has been an increasing acceptance of computational theories of the mind. But such theories also seem to close the gap between ourselves and machines, threatening traditional notions of our special value as non-physical conscious minds. Prima facie, Sāmkhya-Yoga - the oldest school of classical Indian philosophy, with its dualism between purusa ('self', 'consciousness') and prakrti ('nature', 'matter') - seems a case in point. However, Sāmkhya-Yoga dualism is not straightforwardly a mind-body dualism and in order to understand exactly where it stands on the mind-body problem we need a more nuanced characterisation of that problem than is usual. Once this is done, it seems that Sāmkhya-Yoga may well be able to accommodate the most plausible parts of the computational theory of mind.
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DOI 10.1080/09552360120048807
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