"Methodological complementarity" is a pragmatic response to the current insolubility of the mind-body problem and should be considered alongside Rakover's mind-body skepticism.
2. Methodological complementarity was developed to deal with a particular problem, namely, the theoretical representation of psychosomatic phenomena. Psychosomatic phenomena are commonly interpreted as demonstrating that mind states can cause physical illness, thus appearing to imply the validity of interactionist dualism. However, such phenomena raise the question of how a mind state can affect a physical state without apparent causal connection, and it is the absence of this connection that has led to the nearly universal rejection of interactionist dualism. Methodological complementarity was developed as a set of linguistic restrictions and prescriptions for theories explaining such phenomena without solving the mind-body problem (which may never be satisfactorily solved). It provides a heuristic framework for psychosomatic theories. Statements indicating a mental cause of a physical effect are to be replaced by statements indicating that the physical effect was caused by the physiological substrate of a mental state.
3. Methodological complementarity suggests that mind and body descriptions are complementary accounts of a process whose ontology is uncertain. Each of these two complementary types of description provide information that may not be reducible to the other, so both are needed for a full account of psychosomatic phenomena. To avoid linguistic inconsistency, the word "cause" is not used for mind-body relations. Instead, mind states are identified with brain states, and it is these identity relations that allow the construction of causal models, including both physiological and mentalistic variables. The ontological reason for the assumed identity relations between mind and body states is not specified, however, because the position is consistent with most of the mind-body positions listed by Rakover (pp. 223-224), namely, logical behaviorism, identity theory, functionalism, double aspect theory, materialism, and parallelism -- but not eliminative materialism or interactionist dualist theories (i.e., epiphenomenalism and interactionism). Methodological complementarity is not a philosophical position. Rather, it is a metatheoretical proposal about the way different types of theoretical description can be integrated without contravening their respective assumptions.
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