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What Is The Self? Essay

790 words - 4 pages

What is personal identity? Surely most people have some rough idea of what it is, but there is more to it than what people think. So often people in life assume for the sake of assuming not aware of how little they actually know. On the topic of person identity there were two great philosophers David Hume, and John Locke both of whom held very different views on the topic, but they both show just how deep this topic can be. Hume's "Of personal identity" and Locke's "Of Identity and diversity" are two powerful and well written essays ripe for critics. The goal is to find a commonality between the ideas, analyze them separately and explain why both were wrong.
David Hume and John Locke both ...view middle of the document...

For a human being we live, we learn, and we change but regardless our past stays the same so that history is always associated with our being. Now comes memory into the argument and memory is a big thing in Locke's view. First to create a memory it has to past through senses, to access a memory takes reflection, and memory is past history so it is everything Locke talked about rolled into one. Locke put forward great ideas about personal identity and the conscious mind.
David Hume argues that since all Information/knowledge is comes through the senses personal identity may be something that only exist in the mind. Hume also saw the role of physical change differently. He unlike Locke thought that when an object changes physically it is no longer what it was depending on how many parts were changed. Hume attacked the assumption that there is a thing as the self-saying that it is nothing more than a bunch of false perceptions that humans have put together out of need for uniqueness. These ideas of how the senses filtered knowledge and create false perceptions had some flaws.
In conclusion, Hume...

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