Analysis Of John Locke's Memory Criterion

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In this essay, I will begin with describing John Locke’s Memory Criterion. I will then object to his theory by stating that a ‘something’ cannot exist and not exist and then continue to exist again. Objection two will deal with double-teletransportation. I will then provide a brief account of the story of the ship of Theseus, which will then lead to the ‘Brave Soldier’ story. Before my conclusion, I will mention compound and simple ‘somethings’ and inanimate and animate ‘somethings’. Throughout this essay, I will follow John Locke’s definition of a person as being “an intelligent thinking being that can know itself as itself, the same thinking thing in different times and places” (Uzgalis, 2016, para. 5). John Locke describes personal identity…show more content…
Locke’s Memory Criterion states that in order to remain the same person in the morning, that you were the night before, you have to have had a continuation of consciousness. This criterion states that a person is not the same person when they fall asleep to when they wake up from sleep because consciousness is not continuous. There is a view that we die each time we fall asleep and are born again as a different person when we wake up. According to Thomas Reid, this concept is inaccurate as a person cannot be existing at one point, be non-existing at another point, and then existing again at an even further point. You would wake up if a bucket of water was thrown on you or there was a loud bang close by. If you were unconscious, you would not wake up to the water on your skin or the noise around you. Therefore, one is not fully unconscious when sleeping, there is a continuation of consciousness. This proves that if we are being defined as a person who is the same person due to a continuation of consciousness, then after sleeping, we are still the same person. On the other hand, no one remembers being born, we have no conscious recollection of that moment and the moments roughly before the age of 3, this is also known as infantile amnesia. Therefore, Locke will say that we are not the same person now, to when we were born because we have no memory of that time, resulting in a non-continuous trail of…show more content…
Ship A became a new ship as a result of its old parts being replaced with new parts. If ship B is constructed using the same materials from the original ship, it would seem that ship B is now the new original ship. However, neither are the original ship. Ship A and ship B cannot be described as numerically identical as there are two distinct ships rather than two ships that are one-and-the-same ships. The ships cannot be described as one-and-the-same ships because the ships were not constructed at the same time, by the same mechanics, using the same materials. They are instead two very different ships that have been based off the same original ship. Although, it may be argued that ship B is numerically identical to the original ship, because the parts of the ship used to construct ship B are from the original ship, but the original ship only had certain parts of its structure replaced at each stop during its travels. Not all of its parts were replaced at the same time. The parts that were replaced towards the end of the journey have spent many more days in the water or out in the sun than the parts that were replaced at the beginning of the journey. Therefore, when ship A entirely consisted of new parts, ship B had finally been fully constructed using all of the structures from the original ship, but the older parts
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