- The nature of (human) persons has become an issue at the forefront of the debate between religion and a modern scientific worldview. Contemporary philosophy of mind is decidedly physicalistic in its approach. Some religiously oriented philosophers have sought to show some conceptual unification between religious doctrine and physicalist philosophy of mind.
- One of the central doctrines of many religious systems is that human persons survive death. After considering a standard objection to many types of materialist accounts of human persons, I focus my discussion on Peter Van Inwagen’s proposed material ontology of human persons and how his position relates to the doctrine of life after death.
- I find van Inwagen’s proposal does not fall to this standard objection. However, van Inwagen’s attempt to show his materialism and the doctrine of the survival of death consistent makes clear the necessary falsehood of his material ontology regarding human persons.
- This result suggests a serious dilemma for the religiously oriented materialist regarding persons.
For the paper, see Link.
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