My philosopher-friend Hubertus Fremerey commented on the preceding blog. I permit myself to reproduce below the reply I emailed to him.
August 20, 2016.
Dear Hubertus.
Re your comment on “Mind is not an epiphenomenon”.
I insist on separating philosophy from science. What I say about metaphysical reality is not meant to be an alternative or a rival to the physical world view.
You write: “… even an earthworm or a beetle has a drive to do this or that, it has life as a living being. Does it need a special ‘life-force’ or would it suffice to have electrochemical forces guiding it? So far I cannot see why a plant is in need of a ‘life-force”’ to sprout and to grow. Simple molecular forces seem to suffice for explanation.”
I fully agree that for a SCIENTIFIC explanation there is no need for anything beyond electrochemical forces and simple molecular forces. Science is right in regarding the notion of a ‘life-force’ as a meaningless redundancy. But as a metaphysical thinker the scientific ‘explanation’ of the drive in the worm or in the plant does not satisfy me.
My friend makes a great sacrifice to help me. There is an adequate scientific explanation of all his movements, including all the chemical and neural processes. But that does not make me understand my friend’s sacrifice for me. The notion of amity makes me understand. And amity is not a thing, is not a physical force; it is a metaphysical reality.
Likewise life is a metaphysical reality. I do not need and I am not satisfied with Bergson’s élan vital. Biologists are right in rejecting it as an intrusion in their field.
I do not say that Creative Eternity is the force that produced the universe. I say it is the myth that gives me the comfort of feeling that the world is intelligible.
All the best.


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