Homunculus fallacy:

Definition Example
When a lower level of perception is introduced to explain the mechanism of perception at a higher level, and then the mechanism of the lower level is explained by invoking the same mechanism as found in the higher perception. Our brains recognize a face when light from that face enters our eyes, is passed to our neurons, and then is recognized as a face by our neurons.
  Notes
To explain sight by saying our neurons “recognize” is to only add another perceiving entity which must itself have a deeper brain that “recognizes”, thus leading to an infinite regress.

Case Study One

One type of homunculus fallacy is seen in the suggestion that a complete explanation for the genesis of humans is in the theory that space aliens genetically engineered humans. Instead of providing much explanatory power, this theory unparsimoniously introduces yet another phenomenon of equal complexity (the existence of space aliens) that needs an explanation.


Keep in mind that a fallacious argument does not entail an erroneous position.


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