Essay Questions On Personal Identity

Essay Questions On Personal Identity-39
Locke motivations are theological as much as metaphysical.Jolley claims that as a theologian Locke deals with with issues in both natural, and perhaps more surprisingly, revealed religion.The two most important of these are Locke’s remarks in Book IV, Chapter 3 section 6 of that for all we know God could just as easily make matter fitly disposed to think as He could add thought to an immaterial substance; the second is the revolutionary theory of personal identity that Locke added in Chapter 27 of Book II of the second edition of the .

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(Let us call this the Homogeneity Principle.) Since perception and thought are not motions or figures, they cannot be caused by matter.

It appeared to some of his critics that this conclusion, which Locke uses to show that there must be some eternal immaterial cognitive Being (namely God), would also rule out Locke’s thinking matter hypothesis.

In giving us his estimate of the limits of human understanding, Locke made some claims which surprised his contemporaries.

In IV.3.6 he suggests that given our ignorance of substances, it was possible that God could make matter fitly disposed think.

He writes: Locke makes a distinction between what we can know and propositions that are only probable.

Essay Questions On Personal Identity

In the passage quoted above he is telling us that we may never be able to know whether dualist or materialist theories of mind are true.

Locke’s theory states that A is the same as B if and only if B remembers at T2 something done or experienced by A at T1.

He often uses the word “consciousness” to help explain his theory, saying that one can remember back to a past conscious state, and can Although Locke’s theory of personal identity may be useful in the aforementioned circumstances, it does not cover every case. I am currently not conscious of any moment during the sleep, nor do I have any memories from the sleep.

Indeed, it would seem that his suggestion in IV.3.6 and his adoption of the principle in IV.10.9 amount to a contradiction. In another part of the discussion of thinking matter, he writes: For I see no contradiction in it, that the first Eternal Thinking Being, should, if he pleased, give to certain systems of created, senseless matter, put together as he thinks fit, some degree of sense, perception and thought: Though I think as I have prove, Lib IV c.10th it is no less a contradiction to suppose matter (which is in its own nature void of sense and thought) should be that eternal first thinking Being.

What Certainty of knowledge can anyone have that some perceptions, such as v.g.


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