Forum: Arts / Philosophy

The "Brain in a Vat" Thought Experiment
By Caulfieldmember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 400, member since Mon Aug 31, 2009
On Sun Sep 06, 2009 08:55 AM

I was going through my old Theory of Knowledge essays and assignments, and I came across a rather interesting one that got me thinking once again. It pertained to something called the "Brain in a Vat Thought Experiment".

The general gist of this theory is it basically forces to you consider the mind and body as completely dependent on one another, and one needs the other in order to function, undergo thought processes, and have "true" beliefs. Therefore, to be a brain in a vat is to have no senses or means of gaining belief.

But what if the brain and the body were considered identical matter? What if the brain behaved as the human body, and could use the proverbial "five senses" just as our bodies can? What if you, as the brain, were placed in a vat, wired to a computer that feeds you electrical impulses, and placed in fluid in order to survive? Would you be subject to fallacious beliefs and perceptions?


2 Replies to The "Brain in a Vat" Thought Experiment

re: The "Brain in a Vat" Thought Experiment
By MJeanette Comments: 1286, member since Fri Dec 26, 2008
On Sun Sep 06, 2009 12:52 PM
Yes, people believe or think they percieve things that they're wrong about all the time, even with the full use of all their senses, and nothing tampering with the way their brain works. I think that anything that would affect a person's senses or affect their brain physically would make it even harder to distinguish reality.

I'm sorry if I'm misunderstanding the question. Was that the kind of response you were looking for?
re: The "Brain in a Vat" Thought Experiment
By majeremember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 5889, member since Sat Sep 29, 2007
On Mon Sep 07, 2009 08:39 PM
Thanks for bringing back memories of my philosophy class.

Anyway, it's like The Matrix.

(that's all I care to say right now)