Thought Ergo Thinker
The quest for immortality is based on the subjective sense of self as significant and existing apart from the objects of experience, including the body. Perhaps, more than logic, it was the forcefulness of this sense of self-existence that persuaded Descartes he could not doubt his own conscious existence, even though he felt compelled to doubt any particular content of experience. The illusion, specifically, is of a self apart from and against the body as a mere object in the external world. From a materialist perspective, however, Descartes’ view of the privileged existence of the conscious ego is simply wrong. If anything is real and indubitable, it is the body and the world. And if anything should be doubted as illusory, it is one’s existence as a conscious self, an ego, which is ultimately nothing other than the first-person perspective of the body. It is the continuance of this conscious self that is mistakenly sought in the quest for immortality. It would be far more logical to seek the immortality of the body!
RELATED TAGS: [quest for/physical immortality, Descartes, cogito (ergo sum), separation from body, illusion of self(hood), permanent self, immortal body/soma, transmigration (of the soul), invulnerable/eternal body]
© Copyright Dan Bruiger 2008. All rights reserved.