Compare And Contrast Locke And Descartes Theory Of Self Identity

1361 Words6 Pages
1)Bodily Substance is the theory of identity that something is entirely material. Bodily Continuity is physical but also states that the body is always changing but we are the same. Psychological Continuity is the theory based on the idea that memory makes us who we are, such as the example of the Boy, Officer, and General we discussed in class. John Lockes theory on personal identity supports Psychological Continuity. As stated by Locke “I am for what I did the last moment” (Hallman 17). In Lockes theory he argues for psychological continuity by saying “Since personal identity reaches no further then consciousness reaches, a pre-existent spirit, having continuous so many ages in a state of silence, would make different persons” (Hallman…show more content…
Locke is a supporter that identity is a psychological thing rather then physical. While on the other hand Descartes believes identity is broken into two different categories which are body and soul. They are the same in the case that Descartes believes that thinking is found in the soul which is tied together to Lockes associating identity to a thinking mental state. They are different in the aspect Descartes believes that identity is also physical instead of just psychological. Desecrates believes the body and soul need each other like a “Pilot in his ship” (Hallman 50). He explains how the soul is “Joined to the body” (Hallman 48) at the pineal gland. His conclusion is the soul uses the body until the body dies and the soul moves on. To support Lockes theory of strictly psychological continuity he explains, even though a tiny finger is cut off does not mean the persons identity and consciousness goes along with it. Lastly he supports his theory by saying as time goes on “We lose sight of our past selves” (Hallman 14), Which supports that identity is a mental state. I believe Locke proves a better argument. I feel this way because Descartes feels a a spirit sends signals to a gland in a persons brain that determines what they do. I feel Locke proves his point well, that the mind is always changing and the identity is made up of a psychological mental
Open Document