Soul Theory Personal Identity Essay

Soul Theory Personal Identity Essay-5
Understanding (1689), John Locke takes on the daunting task of critiquing the work of his predecessors, as well as developing his own theories to replace or refine them.

Understanding (1689), John Locke takes on the daunting task of critiquing the work of his predecessors, as well as developing his own theories to replace or refine them.

It is worth noting that Locke does not actually provide any hints as to how we are to judge the verity of a person’s account of their memories in this scenario, instead placing his faith in the judgement of God[2].

William Molyneux makes an objection to Locke’s erasure of accountability for the drunkard, saying instead that the intoxicated person with no memory of their crime should be punished regardless.

To illustrate, Locke articulates that if the consciousness of a prince’s past life was somehow transferred to the body of a cobbler whose body had been “deserted by his own soul”[3], then he would be the same ‘person’ despite not appearing to be the same ‘man’.

Locke then goes on to illustrate the contrary experience of the cobbler’s consciousness inhabiting the prince’s old body.

In chapter 3 of Book II, Locke discounts the importance of atomic identity, insisting that atoms are the same at any one point in time, and remain the same over time.

Soul Theory Personal Identity Essay Arts Birth Creative Essay Imaging Profession Therapy

It is assigning a meaning of identity to living things which is more difficult.

In order to examine the flaws in Locke’s theory, I will first establish a foundation of how Locke views personal identity, with some examples which he offers to support his claims.

I will then postulate the rebuttals of three prominent philosophers, William Molyneux, Thomas Reid and Joseph Butler, in an attempt to show some fallacies in Locke’s theory of personal identity.[1] Mackie, and the identity of a living thing.

In other words, our identity can only exist as far back as we can remember.

As previously mentioned, Locke’s criterion for sameness lies in the continuity of the same functional organisation between two points in time, then consciousness becomes the continual link between the past and present self.

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