By Michael Sudduth
Sudduth presents a serious exploration of classical empirical arguments for survival arguments that purport to teach that info accrued from ostensibly paranormal phenomena represent strong proof for the survival of the self after dying. using the conceptual instruments of formal epistemology, he argues that classical arguments are unsuccessful.
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Additional info for A Philosophical Critique of Empirical Arguments for Postmortem Survival
And even if a postmortem soul retains its antemortem dispositions, death may impede the triggering of the disposition in different ways. 34 A Philosophical Critique of Empirical Arguments example, a survivor might retain most of her antemortem memories or maybe very few of them. Perhaps the interests and beliefs of survivors remain largely continuous with the interests and beliefs they had in their antemortem state, or perhaps these radically change. Accordingly, we can conceive of various hypotheses of psychological survival that occupy a position on a fairly broad continuum, with strong and weak conceptions occupying opposite ends of the continuum.
I draw on AAR and PoA to deconstruct the survivalist criticisms of the robust LAP-hypothesis, or what they disparagingly call super-psi, and I show why the survivalist critique is self-defeating. The second half of the chapter is devoted to a summary of my complete argument against Bayesian, Likelihood, and explanatory arguments for survival. In this way, I summarize my case for supposing the classical empirical arguments for survival do not succeed in showing that there is good evidence for survival, however provocative the arguments may be otherwise.
R. Matthews on the psychological nature of personal survival: the center of consciousness which was in existence before death does not cease to be in existence after death and that the experience of this center after death has the same kind of continuity with its experience before death as that of a man who sleeps for a while and wakes again. K. Paterson wrote: for those who hope that a loved one has survived death, the content of their hope is that the mind of the loved one has survived, that his patience and good humour, his diverse interests, and his distinctive personal capacities are still functioning, and of course that he still remembers those who are dear to him and the experiences they have shared.