How Does John Locke's View Of Preserving Personal Identity

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Darien Giordano Mrs. Oganowski Intro to Philosophy November 23, 2015 Personal identity is an intriguing and ambiguous term that had troubled philosophers for decades. Personal identity equips people with the question of who they want others to perceive them as and who they really are. John Locke and Charles Taylor are just two philosophers who have tried to attack the conception of the self, or personal identity. Both brought rather enticing theories and astute ideas to attention regarding personal identity. Locke argues that personal identity is made up of uniting consciousness over time created by and consisting of memory. Taylor argues that personal identity constitutes two accounts that characterize the self. These characterizations are…show more content…
Locke’s personal identity conceptions adhere to the metaphysical categories of substance and properties. Locke sees it possible for consciousness to be passed from one substance on to another changing the soul, but preserving personal identity because the consciousness does not change. It can also be assumed that if consciousness is lost, then the soul and thinking substance remain unchanged. Basically, Locke sees it as one person at one time is the same person at another time. For example, if a man committed a crime and went to prison for twenty years, that same man would be the same person when he got out of prison. However, Taylor would maintain that the man who went to prison can be a different person than the one who left prison. Taylor would assume the body of the man is the same, but his personal identity has changed. Locke would take his argumentative foundation of memory to state that if the man who went to prison had the same memories as the one who left prison, then he would essentially still be the same person. Taylor’s notion that a person can change over time does not disclose the usual elements of metaphysical philosophy of personal…show more content…
Furthermore, Taylor attacks the speculation of questions like, who am I? When am I actually myself? Locke perceives the self as something that is self conscious and self aware, as Taylor maintains that being self aware and self conscious do not augment the concept of strong evaluations to emphasize what we care about when we think of the self; what is actually “mattering” to the self. Taylor’s self evaluations conceive that we have a temporal component: who we are, how have we come who we are, and what are we projecting into the world. Strong self evaluations establish that our lives are pronounced by an orientation to the good through the self narrative or moral growth and maturity. Strong evaluations mark personhood as a question of value, meaning a particular person’s certain values can make a person themselves. For Taylor, a person’s fundamental aims, social attachments, and values are essential in guiding a person’s life, making them qualities of identity. These are features that are important in a person making evaluative judgments and decisions in regards to living their life. However, Locke argues that if a person loses something that is a feature to their personal identity, then that person is not numerically the same person again. Taylor would argue that if a person lost a certain framework then they could still be the same person

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