Four Theories Of Personal Identity

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What makes us the same person as we were when we were ten years old? Is it because we have the same body, soul, or memories? What makes the person you were yesterday consistent with the person you are today? These questions, along with questions pertaining to sense of self, are the basic problems of personal identity. Since we do not look or act the same as we did when we were a child, can it be possible we are not the same person? Many philosophers ponder this problem of who we are and if are in fact an entire new person from our ten-year-old self. For instance, if you look at a photo of yourself from when you were a kid, there are many physical differences. The theories of personal identity try to explain how despite the differences, you …show more content…
There are many theories of personal identity that try to make sense of these questions. The different theories examine how the body, soul, and memories determine someone’s identity. There is also the theory that there is no self that persists through time.
The four main theories of personal identity are the Body theory, Soul theory, Illusion theory, and Memory theory. The Body theory states that someone is the same person as long as they have the same body. This makes sense when an elderly person looks back at their teenage self because they are still in the same body, with the same DNA, therefore they are the same person. Although this theory is sensible, there are problems that arise. For example, life after death is impossible based on this theory because when you die your body dies and it cannot be proven that life after death does not exists. Other problems include body switching and amnesia. Imagine a person who has amnesia, according to the Body theory a person who forgets entirely who they are and has no sense of self,
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The theory explains that a person remains the same as long as they have conscious memories of their past. These past memories a person may learn from allowing them to make changes and improvements to their life. The Memory theory explains, how life after death is logically possible because if someone remembers their former self after they have passed on, they are the same person, how the body switch is simply just a memory and mind switch, and how the coworker we saw the day before is the same person if they have the same memories about the past. Even though this is one of the stronger personal identity theories, there are still a few problems that arise due to

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