Neuroscientific findings in the light of Aquinas' understanding of the human being
Keywords: 
Thomas Aquinas
Nancey Murphy
hylomorphism
physicalism
neuroscience
Issue Date: 
2017
Publisher: 
Servicio de Publicaciones de la Universidad de Navarra
ISSN: 
2353-5636
Citation: 
Horvat, S. (Saša). "Neuroscientific findings in the light of Aquinas' understanding of the human being". Scientia et Fides. 5 (2), 2017, 127 - 153
Abstract
Neuroscience is one of the most propulsive of all sciences and very often, directly or not, it tries to answer the question: What is man? However, neuroscientific research does not acknowledge the concept of man as a unity of body and soul. The modern scientific research paradigm therefore rests on physicalism, while theologians are turning towards non-reductive physicalism. In this paper, we will highlight a few key points of the theory of philosopher and theologian Nancey Murphy, which is based on the deconstruction of Aquinas's thought about the human soul and its reduction to the physical. We aim to show that she neglected the full scope of Aquinas teachings. In the second part of this paper, for the scientific paradigm of humans we shall propose new-old hylomorphism, and try to complement certain points of such a system with modern neuroscientific views. The aim of this work is to offer advice for the interdisciplinary cooperation between neuroscience, philosophy and theology alongside the guidelines of Aristotelian-Thomistic hylomorphism.

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