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Dewhurst, E. Brown (2019): On the Soul and the Cyberpunk Future: St Macrina, St Gregory of Nyssa and Contemporary Mind/Body Dualism. In: Studies in Christian Ethics, UNSP 0953946819863017
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Abstract

In On the Soul and the Resurrection, St Macrina and St Gregory of Nyssa consider what the soul is, and its relationship to our body and identity. Gregory notes the way that our bodies are always changing, and asks which is most truly our 'real' body if we are always in a state of growth, decay and transience? What physical body will be with us at the resurrection? If our body is as important to our identity as our soul, then who am I when my body changes? Macrina answers that our identity is bodily, but that the sufferings and passages of time that alter our bodies mean that we are an imperfect version of ourselves in this life. The person that we will be at the resurrection will be free from the influence of evil and the ravages of impermanence. Modern-day science fiction wrestles with Gregory's problem-where is my identity located? If my body is altered beyond recognition, or my mind transferred to a new body, am I still me? These cyberpunk and transhumanist worries call to mind the ancient topic of mind/body dualism, and Macrina and Gregory have some surprisingly relevant insights to offer to our contemporary technological dilemmas.