Relationship of Mind and Body Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :

Much as in Mary Shelly's Frankenstein, the Monster has no memory of who he was in parts, only of who he is as a whole distinct person, although that abnormal brain certainly didn't help his feedback system.

Shelly, not our Shelly but Frankenstein's', reminds us that human beings are not just machines and trying to simply piece them together as if the parts are the only concern rarely works out well. However, is Frankenstein the ubermensch that Neitize talked about? If so there are certainly some problems. Of course this is metaphorical, in our experiment Smelly has been pieced together a bit, but more from a teleological standpoint in trying to ascertain the meaning of personality rather than the meaning of life. But in a sense there is also some reality to this metaphor. The scientific breakthroughs in cloning organisms and genetic manipulation, as well as this Smelly situation, certainly put the traditional view of God out to pasture in many ways. If human beings can take hold and shape their own destinies from the womb and before, recently only God's country, than perhaps the concept of a divine being needs to be readjusted to fit more in line with reality. Here is where religion and science often split their perspectives on the divinity and sacredness of life. Is God Dead? Certainly in this modern world the belief in God as the master controller of the universe is under a certain amount of circumspection. But is Neitze's Superman the replacement for God? No. As scientist are often fond of saying that human being are composed of star dust, then, the ultimate conclusion of religion is that everything is divine in nature and the spark of divinity is in us all. Is it the spark of divinity in us all that is our ultimate soul? Does that divinity express itself in Smelly as well as any cloned or naturally occurring organism? Of course it does.

One of the key words in the shaping of this argument is organism, and not just organism alone but organism-environment, there is no one without the other and both shape the personality into what it will ultimately become. So Smelly is the ultimate product of her organism-environment complex of experiences. From simple to complex functions one cannot describe and action without describing the organism and its environment. Walking, for instance, requires the organism to walk and the environment to walk on, i.e. walking down the hall, etc. There is no one without the other, and this holistic system is what Smelly as a finally product must reflect, as do all living things.

But then what about memories of the past? Is Smelly like an amnesia victim who can speak and has intellectual faculty, but no memory of who she is? Certainly not, Sam's memories are now a part of this new, or should one say refurbished, organism. Sam's past would certainly play a large part in the creation of this new person. But would they dominate this new personality structure. Also the fact that Sam has lived all of his previous life as a male will certainly play a part in this development. But Shelly's body is a biologically correct female, right down to the production of hormones. Hormones can certainly play a dominating role when it comes to the emotional part of a personality. Instinctual as well as gender biases must come into play and Sam's intellectual personality will certainly have to blend with these in order to become a fully functioning organism.

But now we have the final dilemma, will Smelly want to be Smelly? If we posit that the ultimate goal and destiny of any human being is all about choice, will Smelly be able to continue as Smelly. Will there be a battle between the intellectual personality of Sam and the body image personality of Shelly, or will they blend into a single Smelly? Perhaps the fact that Sam and Shelly are not strangers and more, that they have been friends for several years will give the blended Smelly some footing to base this longer term relationship upon. Friends tend to take on certain characteristics of each other over time and perhaps all friends have something of a Smelly relationship intrinsic within…

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