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mind–body problem

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The philosophical problem, usually attributed to the French philosopher René Descartes (1596–1650) of explaining the apparent interaction of mental and physical events, which appear to belong to two quite separate realms of existence, as when a (mental) wish gives rise to a (physical) bodily movement or a (physical) pinprick to a (mental) sensation of pain. The problem was appreciated by Descartes only after he received a letter in 1643 from Princess Elizabeth of Bohemia (1596–1662), the daughter of King James I of England and VI of Scotland, pointing it out. See also Cartesian dualism, double-aspect theory, dualism, epiphenomenalism, identity theory, interactionism (1), materialism, monism, neutral monism, psychophysical parallelism.

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