Disembodied Minds and Personal Identity

Philosophy Research Archives 14:415-423 (1988)
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Discussion of the human soul has bulked large in the literature of philosophy and religion. I defend the possibility of disembodied Cartesian minds by examining the criticisms of three philosophers who argue that there are serious difficulties about any attempt to account for the identity of such Cartesian minds through time. I argue that their criticisms of the possibility of disembodied minds are damaging but not fatal. I hold that the central issue behind their criticisms of Cartesian minds is whether any nonphysical mental criterion can be formulated for the identity of such entities. Even though no such criterion can be given, disembodied minds that persist through time remain logical possibilities.



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