In this paper, I argue that if we have reason to believe that an immaterial soul exists, then (absent evidence to the contrary) it should be presumed to be immortal. The conclusion is weaker than Socrates’ conclusion that immaterial souls must be immortal, but the argument is stronger, I claim, for having this weaker conclusion. Moreover, a presumption of immortality is significant in its own right.
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Thanks to Scott Davison, Sandy Goldberg, David Kovacs, Ariel Meirav, Boaz Miller, Daniel Schneider, Saul Smilansky, Danny Statman and an anonymous reviewer for comments and discussion that helped to shape this paper. Thanks also to my friend Tyron Goldschmidt for his disapproval of an earlier draft, which encouraged me to persevere!
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