Body or Soul? Philosophy


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Ponder on issues of the body and soul

Body or Soul? Philosophy

  1. 1. Are the body and soul inseparable, only intended to intervene?
  2. 2. Death <ul><li>‘ The complete and permanent cessation of all vital functions in a living creature, the end of life” </li></ul><ul><li>... Or is it? </li></ul>
  3. 3. Body or Soul? <ul><li>There are two main theories of human nature that have implications of meaningful survival after death: </li></ul><ul><li>Materialism – the theory that our minds are inseparable from our bodies </li></ul><ul><li>Dualism – the theory that there exist both bodies and minds, distinct from one another, but linked together in some way </li></ul>
  4. 4. Materialism <ul><li>Those who support materialism do not accept that there is a separate part to the human body called the ‘soul’. </li></ul><ul><li>An individual is a living, physical body, and nothing more </li></ul><ul><li>At death, the body dies and therefore the whole person ceases to exist </li></ul><ul><li>What do you think...? </li></ul>
  5. 5. Something to think about... <ul><li>Are our body and soul two separate realities, or are we one complex, integrated psycho-physical system? </li></ul><ul><li>Is the mind the same thing as the soul? </li></ul>
  6. 6.  Is this all there is to it? Is there something more?
  7. 7. Gilbert Ryle ‘the concept of the mind’ <ul><li>Ryle argued that the idea of the soul –which he described as ‘the ghost in the machine’- was a ‘category mistake’. </li></ul><ul><li>He argued that it was a mistake in the use of language. The mistake was that it resulted in people speaking of the mind and the body as different phenomena – as if the soul was something identifiably extra within a person... </li></ul>
  8. 8. Ryle’s Analogy: <ul><li>He used the example of a foreigner watching a cricket game and asking ‘But where is the team spirit?’ The foreigner expected ‘team spirit’ to be something identifiably extra to the players etcetera... This is the same as people mistaking the idea of a soul </li></ul>
  9. 9. Well, what is meant by the soul? <ul><li>The Oxford Dictionary of Philosophy defines the soul as... </li></ul><ul><li>“ The immaterial ‘I’ that possesses conscious experience, controls passion, desire and action, and maintains a perfect identity from birth (or before birth) to death (or after).” </li></ul>
  10. 10. Something to think about... <ul><li>Do you consider yourself to be more than ‘a body with a nervous system’? </li></ul><ul><li>Is an emotion more than a chemical reaction in your brain? </li></ul><ul><li>How do you know your opinion is right? </li></ul>
  11. 11. Hard Materialist <ul><li>Hard Materialists do not accept that an individual’s characteristics are anything more than physical ones. Any idea of consciousness is nothing more than brain activity. The mind cannot be separated from the body. When the body dies, then so does the brain. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Soft Materialist <ul><li>Soft Materialists do not accept that all characteristics are physical ones. Consciousness is more than just a brain process. The mind and body are related and do not act independently of each other. Still however, there is no believe in an identifiable, extra soul </li></ul>
  13. 13. Three Categories <ul><li>Hard Materialist: </li></ul><ul><li>No Spiritual self </li></ul><ul><li>No emotional self things like love are just a chemical reaction in the Brain </li></ul><ul><li>Only a physical self </li></ul><ul><li>Soft Materialist: </li></ul><ul><li>No Spiritual Self </li></ul><ul><li>There is an emotional self </li></ul><ul><li>There is a physical self </li></ul><ul><li>Only emotions and the physical self are present </li></ul><ul><li>Religious: </li></ul><ul><li>There is a spiritual self </li></ul><ul><li>There is an emotional self </li></ul><ul><li>There is a physical self </li></ul><ul><li>All three ‘selves’ are present </li></ul>
  14. 14. The Replica Theory <ul><li>If you disappeared from the classroom, but then a different ‘version’ of you reappeared in Australia with the same appearance, memories, experiences, ways of thinking and opinions as you currently have, is this still you ? </li></ul>
  15. 15. ‘ Un Mundo’ (A World) – Angeles Santos
  16. 16. Dualism, notes <ul><li>A dualist approach to mind and body argues that it is the mind that determines our personality, and that the body is an outer shell for the real self. </li></ul><ul><li>The body is contingent and therefore is destined for decay, but the mind, associated with the higher realities, such as truth, goodness and justice, is immortal </li></ul><ul><li>If a man’s life is spend in contemplation of these higher realities, then his soul can enter eternity after the death of the physical body </li></ul><ul><li>This belief is called the immortality of the soul </li></ul>
  17. 17. “ An immortal soul temporarily lodged in a physical body”... <ul><li>The soul lives on after the death of the body </li></ul><ul><li>The soul is only in the body for a limited time, it’s temporarily lodged there </li></ul><ul><li>Therefore, the body isn’t who we are but it’s just something that gives our true-self (our soul) a physical existence </li></ul>What does it mean?
  18. 18. Something to think about... <ul><li>“ I am dying of a heart condition. I am informed that the technique exists to transplant my brain into the body of someone who has died of a brain tumour. I agree and my brain is transplanted into this new body. The body works perfectly and all my memories are intact, but I look totally different. My friends and family no longer recognise me, while the friends and family of the person into whose body my brain has been transplanted greet me in the street. Who am I? Am I the person who died from a brain tumour or the person whose brain was transplanted? Could I be a new identity all together?” </li></ul><ul><li>It’s quite long, but fascinating to think about... </li></ul>
  19. 19. What is ‘I’? <ul><li>To tackle the dilemma on the previous slide, we have to think about what is ‘I’... </li></ul><ul><li>Does anyone have any ideas what ‘I’ could be? </li></ul>
  20. 20. What could ‘I’ be? The way people recognise you – your physical self Your personal way of thinking Your own opinions Just everything about you The actions you commit Things that we are interested in, for example, philosophy!