John Hick - Body and Soul

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  • John Hick
    • He is a leading theistic thinker but rejects traditional dualism by essentially adopting a materialistic position but still suggesting that there is life after death
    • The soul is a way of expressing the value of human beings, e.g when someone says S.O.S, they don't literally mean an invisible substance but as a way of talking about the value of ourselves
    • Traducianism
      • Roman catholics teach that the individual souls are created and implanted by God - Hick questioned this idea
      • Bishop Tertullian argued souls were passed down from our parents which is known as Traducianism - this idea keeps with modern sciences and fits in with Hicks idea that the soul is not something extra
        • Roman catholics teach that the individual souls are created and implanted by God - Hick questioned this idea
    • Hick does not completely rule out the possibility of the mind and body being different entities = telepathy leaves us with strange and interesting evidence and he calls this mind-brain dualism
    • Replica theory
      • Resurrection is a divine action in which an exact replica of ourselves is created in a different place
      • It is suggested to explain what is meant by resurrection
      • The replica is the same as us in all aspects but the location of the replica is not on earth
      • 1 = Suppose John Smith were to suddenly disappear in London and reappear in New York, presumably we would believe it was the same person as tests establish that the 'replica' was identical
        • 2 = Now suppose John Smith were to die in London and be recreated in New York, Presumable we'd identify to be the person in New York than the body in London
          • 3 = Finally, suppose John Smith dies in London and is buried. Is it not logically possible that God could recreate him in another world?
      • It is close to what St. Paul teaches in 1 Corinthians 15
      • There can only be one 'replica' it is not the same as a copy, it cannot exist at the same time as the individual
    • Human beings are psycho-somatic unity = unity of physical body and soul
    • Issues
      • It is logically possible that many replicas could be created, which could be 'me'?
      • Identity is not just about memories, a person with Alzheimers is still the same person
      • Will the replica still have all the problems that the original person had? Terminal diseases or heart problems?
        • Hick did suggest that the healing of illness might take place in the new existence as a replica


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