Embodied Cognitive Dynamics and their Impact on Humans’ Freedom within the Society

Khamassi Mehdi
Lorenceau Jean
Language of the article : French
DOI: n/a
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The purpose of this article is to examine how knowledge from psychology and cognitive neuroscience about the behavioral automatisms that our bodies acquire through interaction with our environment can help us become freer. For this, we draw a parallel with philosophical positions according to which freedom is possible for humans by degree, in particular that of Spinoza where knowledge makes people freer, and that of Bergson where the time for deliberation and invocation of memory makes more free. Specifically, our thesis is that a regular critical examination of anything that promotes our behavioral automatisms increases our freedom. This allows us to keep only selected automatisms, and to reduce the influence of external stimuli on our decisions. For this, we emphasize the notion of learning internal models, as promoted in computational neuroscience. These models allow us to mentally simulate the possible consequences of our actions before deciding, and therefore to deliberate according to our goals and our values. This way, we can make decisions that are more like us and that we are less likely to regret later. Finally, we propose to examine all the elements of our environment that prompt us to act automatically (conditioned stimuli, particular contexts, advertisements, simplistic political messages, social pressure, etc.).

Pour citer cet article :

Khamassi Mehdi, Lorenceau Jean (2021/2). Embodied Cognitive Dynamics and their Impact on Humans’ Freedom within the Society. In Monier Cyril & Khamassi Mehdi (Eds), Liberty and cognition, Intellectica, 75, (pp.33-72), DOI: n/a.