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Faith and Philosophy

Volume 31, Issue 1, January 2014

Joshua Johnson
Pages 91-104

In Defense of Emergent Individuals
A Reply to Moreland

J. P. Moreland has recently raised a number of metaphysical objections to the theory of Emergent Individuals that is defended by Timothy O’Connor, Jonathan Jacobs, and others. Moreland argues that only theism can provide a sufficient explanation for human consciousness, and he considers the theory of Emergent Individuals to offer a competing naturalistic explanation that must be refuted in order for his argument to be successful. Moreland focuses his objections on the account of emergence advocated by the defenders of the theory, as well as what he considers to be the theory’s problematic commitment to panpsychism and the causal powers metaphysic. I respond to Moreland’s objections and argue that they are unsuccessful largely due to his misunderstanding of the theory of Emergent Individuals.

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