What does it mean for the soul to be mortal or immortal? Christian Wolff’s defense of the immortality of the soul includes a preliminary justification of the applicability of the physiological concepts of life and death to the soul itself. This justification relies on his doctrine of the analogy between body and soul, which he also uses as a heuristic device to explore the similarities between psychology and physics and thus to establish psychology as a genuine science dealing with forces, laws, faculties, and measurements. Arguing that Wolff’s soul-body analogy is ultimately based on the idea that the mind is a machine, just like the body, this paper makes a case for the view that the Wolffian foundation of modern psychology was strongly influenced by his ideal of mechanistic science.

Psychology and Mechanism: Christian Wolff on the Soul-Body Analogy

Matteo Favaretti Camposampiero
2022-01-01

Abstract

What does it mean for the soul to be mortal or immortal? Christian Wolff’s defense of the immortality of the soul includes a preliminary justification of the applicability of the physiological concepts of life and death to the soul itself. This justification relies on his doctrine of the analogy between body and soul, which he also uses as a heuristic device to explore the similarities between psychology and physics and thus to establish psychology as a genuine science dealing with forces, laws, faculties, and measurements. Arguing that Wolff’s soul-body analogy is ultimately based on the idea that the mind is a machine, just like the body, this paper makes a case for the view that the Wolffian foundation of modern psychology was strongly influenced by his ideal of mechanistic science.
Mechanism, Life and Mind in Modern Natural Philosophy
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10278/5008721
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