Evidence and the Afterlife
Hales (Steven D.)
Source: Philosophia, vol. 28, nos. 1-4, pp. 335-346
Paper - Abstract

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Author’s Abstract

  1. Several prominent philosophers, including A.J. Ayer and Derek Parfit, have offered the evidentiary requirements for believing human personality can reincarnate, and hence that Cartesian dualism is true.
  2. At least one philosopher, Robert Almeder, has argued that there are actual cases which satisfy these requirements.
  3. I argue in this paper that even if we grant the empirical data – a large concession – belief in reincarnation1 is still unjustified.
  4. The problem is that without a theoretical account of the alleged cases of reincarnation2, the empirical evidence alone does not license giving up materialist theories of the mind.


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