The term 'autonomous mind' (AM) stays for the massive and robust mental infrastructure acting in the ‘background’, or in the ‘default’ modus, which is capable of charting the arena of possible action, motor and mental, before it is molded in consciousness, before the ‘self’ is aware of it, and before it is shaped in narration. To exemplify the idea I will, on a more general level, outline two theses: that of linearity and of bi-directionality. An attempt to bring about some more specific aspects of AM will enable me to discuss, among other things, a much neglected trait of mentality – the fact that mind is an outcome of effects of cognitive organism's acting upon it. Namely, while we invest most of our theoretical effort to enlighten the role we have as active agents, theorists seem to be insensitive to the fact that we are not only subjects but also objects of own doing. The concluding remark might thus be: the doing shapes the doer in the way not accessible to conscious deliberation. Mind is therefore resultant of the cloth not tailored by the conscious and volitional design.
Zdravko Radman is a Senior Researcher at the Institute of Philosophy, Zagreb, and teaches philosophy at the University of Split, Croatia. As an Alexander von Humboldt and a William J. Fulbright Fellow he was affiliated with the University of Konstanz and the University of California, Berkeley; as a visiting scholar he conducted research at the Australian National University, the University of Tokyo, and University College London, among others. He is also IMéRA (Marseille) 2014 research fellow. He has published in the philosophy of mind, aesthetics, and the philosophy of language. He is the author of Metaphors: Figures of the Mind (Kluwer, 1997/Springer 2010) and editor of The Hand, an Organ of the Mind: What the Manual Tells the Mental. (The MIT Press, 2013), Knowing without Thinking: Mind, Action, Cognition, and the Phenomenon of the Background (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012), Horizons of Humanity (Peter Lang, 1997), and From a Metaphorical Point of View (Walter de Gruyter, 1995).