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Dictionary Meaning and Definition on 'Conarium'

Conarium Meaning and Definition from Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
    Pineal \Pi"ne*al\, a. [L. pinea the cone of a pine, from pineus of the pine, from pinus a pine: cf. F. pin['e]ale.] Of or pertaining to a pine cone; resembling a pine cone. Pineal gland (Anat.), a glandlike body in the roof of the third ventricle of the vertebrate brain; -- called also pineal body, epiphysis, conarium. In some animals it is connected with a rudimentary eye, the so-called pineal eye, and in other animals it is supposed to be the remnant of a dorsal median eye.
Conarium Meaning and Definition from Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
    Conarium \Co*na"ri*um\, n. [NL., fr. Gr. kwna`rion.] (Anat.) The pineal gland.
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Wikipedia Meaning and Definition on 'Conarium'

Conarium (lat.) is an epiphysis of the human brain, physiologically related to the Pineal gland

In philosophy, conarium is a term related to the philosophical tradition of dualism and in particular the Cartesian theory for human existence (cartesian dualism). According to René Descartes, conarium is the passage or linking mechanism (metaphysical) of the brain that links the material with the spiritual. Thus, by allowing this interaction Descartes tries to justify the problem of free will that his realism prohibits.

Descartes suggested that the conarium is "the seat of the soul" for several reasons. First, the soul is unitary, and unlike many areas of the brain the conarium appeared to be unitary (though subsequent microscopic inspection of the pineal gland has revealed it is formed of two hemispheres). Second, Descartes observed that the conarium was located near the ventricles. He believed the animal spirits (lat. spititus vitales) of the ventricles acted through the nerves to control the body, and that the conarium influenced this process. Finally, Descartes incorrectly believed that only humans have pineal glands, just as, in his view, only humans have minds. This led him to the belief that animals cannot feel pain, and Descartes' practice of vivisection (the dissection of live animals) became widely used throughout Europe until the Enlightenment.

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