Wait, But Why? Challenging the Intuitive Force of Substance Dualism

Sarah Lane Ritchie

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.12775/SetF.2021.009


In responding to Joshua Farris’ The Soul of Theological Anthropology, I suggest several reasons for questioning the theological need for substance dualism in any form. Specifically, I argue that it is not at the level of analytic argumentation that the mind or soul is best understood, and that the sciences do indeed challenge substance dualism (despite philosophical arguments to the contrary). In making this argument, I examine the roles of intuition and theological pre-commitments in one’s determination of the correct understanding of the mind or soul. I suggest that dualism is not only theologically unnecessary, but also an intuition that we have reason to question.


physicalism; intuition; mind; soul; consciousness; body

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