[Marxism] Trotsky's Philosophical Notebooks : Questions on Psychology

shaun may mnwps at hotmail.com
Wed Dec 11 13:47:22 MST 2013

Just some quick, preliminary/provisional thoughts in reply on this question of consciousness.

How does thinking influence mood and this, in its turn, is capable of modulating the physiological state itself, of CNS and body? There must be some form of neurological mediation between thinking and altered states of mood? Thinking itself must have neurological correlates for this to happen (Australian philosopher Armstrong??). If my mood alters as a result of thinking about, .e.g., an emotionally "painful" experience and this starts to make me feel anxious or depressed then there has to be a real neurological mediation in operation. Do not states of mood or "feeling" have to be neurologically correlated in order to be subjectively registered? In this way, does not the actual conceptual content of thinking processes actually influence, mediatively, "matter", i.e. living matter. We cannot think without the active neurology of the brain and yet thinking itself - being linked to or associated/correlated with this neurology - must be capable of influencing this neurology. In other words, there is a dialectical relationship between neurology and psychology in operation which does not, at the same time, deny the essentially social character of the conceptual content of consciousness. This, to me, seems like an adequate synthesis of the social and the neurological as expressed in the psychological. 

Shaun May

Take it easy  (favourite motto of Engels)
Doubt everything (favourite motto of Marx)
Marriage is a wonderful institution, but who wants to live in an institution? 
Groucho Marx
'Sir, if you were my husband, I would put poison in your coffee.'  Nancy Astor. 
'Madam, if you were my wife, I would drink it.' Winston Churchill.
Blenheim Palace, 1912



More information about the Marxism mailing list