Description : There is no question: We are all persons. But what exactly are persons? Are we immaterial souls or Cartesian Egos which only contingently have bodies? Or are persons nothing over and above their bodies? Are they essentially or most fundamentally animals, evolved beings of a certain sort? Or are we something other or more than animals, namely constituted beings with a certain capacity that distinguishes persons from everything else? What is necessary, and what is sufficient, for an entity to be classified or (re-)identified as a person? What's the value of an analysis of such (biological or psychological) conditions? What does it contribute to our understanding of ourselves as free agents or as beings wanting to live their individual live? The essays collected in this anthology try to answer these questions. They are primarily concerned with the metaphysics of persons and the criteria of personal identity, but also touch on problems of the theory of action and of practical philosophy.
Description : We often hear it said that "each person is unique and unrepeatable" or that "each person is his own end and not a mere instrumental means." But what exactly do these familiar sayings mean? What are they based on? How do we know they are true? In this book, John F. Crosby answers these questions by unfolding the mystery of personal individuality or uniqueness, or as he calls it personal selfhood. He stands in the great tradition of Western philosophy and draws on Aquinas wherever possible, but he is also deeply indebted to more recent personalist philosophy, especially to the Christian personalism of Kierkegaard and Newman and to the phenomonology of Scheler and von Hildebrand. As a result, Crosby, in a manner deeply akin to the philosophical work of Karol Wojtyla, enriches the old with the new as he explores the structure of personal selfhood, offering many original contributions of his own. Crosby sheds new light on the incommunicability and unrepeatability of each human person. He explores the subjectivity, or interiority, of persons as well as the much-discussed theme of their transcendence, giving particular attention to the transcendence achieved by persons in their moral existence. Finally he shows how we are led through the person to God, and he concludes with an original and properly philosophical approach to the image of God in each person. Throughout his study, Crosby is careful not to take selfhood in an individualistic way. He shows how the "selfhood and solitude" of each person opens each to others, and how, far from interfering with interpersonal relations, it in fact renders them possible. ABOUT THE AUTHOR: John F. Crosby is professor and chair of philosophy at the Franciscan University of Steubenville in Ohio. He has taught at the University of Dallas, the John Paul II Institute for Marriage and Family in Rome, and at the International Academy of Philosophy in Liechtenstein. Professor Crosby earned his doctorate in philosophy from the Universitaet Salzburg, Austria, studying with Josef Seifert and having Dietrich von Hildebrand as his master. PRAISE FOR THE BOOK: "This work is a serious philosophical study full of many rich insights that advance significantly our understanding of the human person."--Norris Clarke, S.J., Fordham University "Crosby makes an invaluable contribution to the future of Catholic philosophy and its intellectual culture in general. This book will become must reading for anyone interested in the relation of John Paul's personalism to the perennial philosophy and to neo-Thomism. For those interested in mediating that relationship, Crosby is their best guide."--Deal W. Hudson, Crisis "John Crosby's books, The Selfhood of the Human Person and the more recent Personalist Papers, deal with metaphysical primitives. This makes them important books. It also makes them courageous books." -- Siobhan Nash-Marshall, American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly
Description : How are soul and body related to one another? Are human beings immaterial souls, or complex physical organisms? Will we survive the death of our bodies? Does only the dualist view allow the possibility of life after death? This collection brings together cutting-edge research on the metaphysics of human nature and the possibility of post-mortem survival. Kevin Corcoran's collection, Soul, Body, and Survival, includes chapters from those who embrace traditional soul-body dualism, those who assert person-body identity, and those who propose entirely new views that fall outside the categories of monism and dualism. The first book to connect the metaphysics of persons with the belief in life after death, thus intersecting with theological as well as philosophical inquiry, it blurs the divide between metaphysics and the philosophy of mind.
Description : Hud Hudson presents an innovative view of the metaphysics of human persons according to which human persons are material objects but not human organisms. In developing his account, he formulates and defends a unique collection of positions on parthood, persistence, vagueness, composition, identity, and various puzzles of material constitution. The author also applies his materialist metaphysics to issues in ethics and in the philosophy of religion. He examines the implications for ethics of his metaphysical views for standard arguments addressing the moral permissibility of our treatment of human persons and their parts, fetuses and infants, the irreversibly comatose, and corpses. He argues that his metaphysics provides the best foundation in the philosophy of religion for the Christian doctrine of the resurrection of the body. Hudson addresses a broad range of metaphysical issues, but among his most strikingly original contributions are his defense of the "Partist" view (according to which a material object can exactly occupy multiple, overlapping regions of spacetime) and his argument for the compatibility of Christianity with a materialistic theory of human persons.
Description : The questions of whether there is a shared nature common to all human beings and, if so, what essential qualities define this nature are among the most widely discussed topics in the history of philosophy and remain the subject of perennial interest and controversy. This book offers a metaphysical investigation of the composition of the human essence--that is, with what is a human being identical or what types of parts are necessary for a human being to exist: an immaterial mind, a physical body, a functioning brain, a soul? It also considers the criterion of identity for a human being across time and change--that is, what is required for a human being to continue existing as a person despite undergoing physical and psychological changes over time? Jason Eberl's investigation presents and defends a theoretical perspective from the thirteenth-century philosopher and theologian Thomas Aquinas. Advancing beyond descriptive historical analysis, this book places Aquinas's account of human nature into direct comparison with several prominent contemporary theories: substance dualism, emergentism, animalism, constitutionalism, four-dimensionalism, and embodied mind theory. There are practical implications of exploring these theories as they inform various conclusions regarding when human beings first come into existence--at conception, during gestation, or after birth--and how we ought to define death for human beings. Finally, each of these viewpoints offers a distinctive rationale as to whether, and if so how, human beings may survive death. This book's central argument is that the Thomistic account of human nature includes several desirable features that other theories lack and offers a cohesive portrait of one's continued existence from conception through life to death and beyond.
Description : The present collection seeks to contribute toward finding that distance by making the tradition of thought more a living reality and not an object of arid analyses. Unlike most collections the present one transcends disciplinary boundaries, as it acknowledges the interconnectedness of philosophical, theological, and political arguments on these themes.
Description : To understand what it means to discover truth, to act in freedom, to be creative, to live authentically, and to aspire to transcend the time and space dimension is the intent of this book. The subject is treated thematically through the analysis of the opposites of materialism and immaterialism with a reconciliation of the two in selected traditional and contemporary philosophies.
Description : The dialogue between science and theology is no longer confined to discussing theology, physics and biology, but, as these essays make clear, sociology, psychology & neuroscience are now open for discussions between theologians and scientists.