Meditation and the scope of mental action

  title={Meditation and the scope of mental action},
  author={Candace L. Upton and Michael Brent},
  journal={Philosophical Psychology},
  pages={52 - 71}
  • C. Upton, M. Brent
  • Published 18 September 2018
  • Psychology, Philosophy
  • Philosophical Psychology
ABSTRACT While philosophers of mind have devoted abundant time and attention to questions of content and consciousness, philosophical questions about the nature and scope of mental action have been relatively neglected. Galen Strawson’s account of mental action, the most well developed extant account, holds that cognitive mental action consists in triggering the delivery of content to one’s field of consciousness. However, Strawson fails to recognize several distinct types of mental action that… 

Exploring the structure of mental action in directed thought

ABSTRACT While the general topic of agency has been collaboratively explored in philosophy and psychology, mental action seems to resist such an interdisciplinary research agenda. Since it is

Voluntary auditory change: First-person access to agentive aspects of attention regulation

In perceptual psychology, audition and introspection have not yet received as much attention as other topics (e.g., vision) and methods (third-person paradigms). Practical examples and theoretical

First-person dimensions of mental agency in visual counting of moving objects

A multi-layered, consciousness-immanent model of counting is presented, which integrates the various counting principles and concretizes mental agency as developing from pre-reflective to increasingly conscious mental activity.

Defining Meditation: Foundations for an Activity-Based Phenomenological Classification System

All meditation techniques are based on a specific set of activities, that is: focusing, releasing, imagining, and moving in relation to an object of meditation, including fields of experience, which can be combined and unified in the activities of observing, producing, and being aware.



Mental action and self-awareness (I)

Book description: Contemporary Debates in Philosophy of Mind showcases the leading contributors to the field, debating the major questions in philosophy of mind today. * Comprises 20 newly

A Plea For Mental Acts

The paper discusses the kind of reflexivity at stake in mentalacts, and it is shown that the capacity to refer to oneself is not a necessary condition of the success of mental acts.

The Mind's Construction: The Ontology of Mind and Mental Action

Acknowledgements Introduction PART I. SENSORY CONSCIOUSNESS 1. The Manifest Image of Sensory Consciousness 2. Occurrence, State, Content, and Character 3. The Phenomenology and Ontology of Bodily

Mental Overpopulation and Mental Action: Protecting Intentions from Mental Birth Control

Many, I suspect most, philosophers of action afford intentions a central role in theorizing about action and its explanation. Furthermore, current orthodoxy in the philosophy of action has it that

How (not) to think about mental action

I examine Galen Strawson's recent work on mental action in his paper, ‘Mental Ballistics or The Involuntariness of Spontaneity’. I argue that his account of mental action is too restrictive. I offer

Mental Action and the Threat of Automaticity

1 Mental Action and the Threat of Automaticity Wayne Wu [I]nput mechanisms approximate the condition often ascribed to reflexes: they are automatically triggered by the stimuli that they apply

New Waves in the Philosophy of Action

This volume contains a set of state-of-the-art essays by younger philosophers on various topics in the philosophy of action. Some of the essays are about the metaphysics of action and agency; some

Meditation and the cultivation of virtue

Abstract In recent decades, social psychology has produced an expansive array of studies wherein introducing a seemingly morally innocuous feature into the situation a subject inhabits often yields

The Philosophy of Metacognition: Mental Agency and Self-Awareness

1. Introduction 2. An evaluativist proposal: cognitive control and metacognition 3. Metacognition as cognition about cognition: attributive views 4. Metacognition or metarepresentation? A critical


What was noted by E. J. hanger (1978) remains true today: that much of contemporary psychological research is based on the assumption that people are consciously and systematically processing