The Evolution of the Soul
2nd Revised edition
By (author) Richard Swinburne
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Evolution of the Soul by Richard Swinburne
Book DescriptionMen have evolved from animals, and animals from inanimate matter, but what has evolved is qualitatively different from the inanimate matter from which it began. Both men and the higher animals have a mental life of sensation, thought, purpose, desire, and belief. Although these mental states in part cause, and are caused by, brain states, they are distinct from them. Richard Swinburne argues that we can only make sense of this interaction by supposing that mental states are states of a soul, a mental substance in interaction with the body. Although both have a rich mental life, human souls, unlike animal souls, are capable of logical thought, have moral beliefs, have free will, and have an internal structure (so that their beliefs and desires are formed largely by other beliefs and desires inherent in the soul). Professor Swinburne concludes that there is no full scientific explanation available for the evolution of the soul, and almost certainly there never will be. For this revised edition Professor Swinburne has taken the opportunity to strengthen or expand the argument in various places, to take account of certain developments in philosophy and cognitive science in the intervening years, and to add new discussion of important matters relating to the themes of the book, including connectionism and quantum theory.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780198236986
(215mm x 138mm x 21mm)
Imprint: Clarendon Press
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publish Date: 27-Feb-1997
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Richard Swinburne
Coherence of Theism, Paperback (May 2016)
This substantially revised second edition of a classic text in philosophy of religion explores what it means, and whether it is coherent, to say that there is a God. Swinburne takes account of new developments in the debate over the past 40 years, and develops his views on central claims about the nature of God in light of recent discussion.
Mind, Brain, and Free Will, Paperback (January 2013)
Richard Swinburne presents a powerful case for substance dualism and libertarian free will. He argues that pure mental and physical events are distinct, and defends an account of agent causation in which the soul can act independently of bodily causes. We are responsible for our actions, and the findings of neuroscience cannot prove otherwise.
Free Will and Modern Science, Paperback (December 2011)
Do humans have the kind of free will which makes them morally responsible for their actions? Essays by distinguished scientists and philosophers investigate whether neuroscience, Quantum theory or mathematics show that human behaviour is or is not fully determined by prior brain states.
Is There a God?, Paperback (January 2010)» View all books by Richard Swinburne
Is There a God? offers a powerful response to modern doubts about the existence of God. It may seem today that the answers to all fundamental questions lie in the province of science but Richard Swinburne, one of the most distinguished philosophers of religion of our day, argues that on the contrary, science provides good grounds for belief in God.
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Author Biography - Richard Swinburne
Richard Swinburne is Nolloth Professor of the Philosophy of the Christian Religion at the University of Oxford, and a Fellow of Oriel College, since 1985. He was previously Professor of Philosophy at the University of Keele. He is the author of many notable books on the philosophy of religion in general and of the philosophy of Christianity in particular. Most recently, he offered general readers a powerful and lucid defence of religious belief in the modern world, in Is There a God? (Oxford University Press, 1996).
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