Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
The Waning of Materialism$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Robert C. Koons and George Bealer

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199556182

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199556182.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use (for details see www.oxfordscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 17 January 2019

Soul, Mind, and Brain

Soul, Mind, and Brain

Chapter:
(p.395) 20 Soul, Mind, and Brain
Source:
The Waning of Materialism
Author(s):

Brian Leftow (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199556182.003.0020

This chapter adumbrates a Thomistic, non-Cartesian version of dualism, defending the Thomistic theory from the familiar charge of inconsistency by showing how it is possible to assert simultaneously that the human being is a single, unitary substance, that the soul is the ‘form’ of the human body, and yet that the soul can exist without the body by virtue of being an immaterial particular. It demonstrates that a Thomistic ‘form’ need not be a mere state of a thing, like a shape: it may also be an immaterial particular, present in every part of a substance, that causes it be in a certain state (such as that of being alive). Aquinas's view of the embodied souls avoids being dualistic by denying that the human body is a separable substance in its own right. What combines with the soul to produce a substantial human thing is not one thing but a plurality. Moreover, the chapter explains that Aquinas's claim that human thought has no bodily ‘organ’ does not entail the natural independence of our cognitive functions from the physical condition of the brain. It does, however, imply that mental content cannot be fully and determinately encoded in the brain's physical condition. Finally, the chapter clarifies the sense in which the disembodied soul is not for Aquinas (unlike Descartes) a substance.

Keywords:   dualism, soul, form, substance, human body, immaterial particular, Thomas Aquinas, Descartes

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .