Overcoming the brain centrism of current neuroscience, Ecology of the Brain develops an ecological and embodied concept of the brain as a mediating or resonance organ. Accordingly, the mind ...
Overcoming the brain centrism of current neuroscience, Ecology of the Brain
develops an ecological and embodied concept of the brain as a mediating or resonance organ. Accordingly, the mind is not a product of the brain: it is an activity of the living being as a whole, which integrates the brain in its superordinate life functions. Similarly, consciousness is not an inner domain located somewhere within the organism, but a continuous process of engaging with the world, which extends to all objects that we are in contact with. The traditional mind–brain problem is thus reformulated as a dual aspect of the living being, conceived both as a lived or subjective body and as a living or objective body. Processes of life and of experiencing life are inseparably linked. Hence, it is not the brain, but the living human person as a whole who feels, thinks, and acts. This concept is elaborated on a broad philosophical, neurobiological, and developmental basis. Based on a phenomenology of the lived body and an enactive concept of the living organism as an autopoietic system, the brain is conceived in this book as a resonance organ, mediating the circular interactions within the body as well as the interactions between the body and the environment. Above all, a person’s relations to others continuously restructure the human brain which thus becomes an organ shaped by social interaction, biography, and culture. This concept is also crucial for a non-reductionist theory of mental disorders, psychiatry, and psychotherapy, which is developed in a special chapter.Less