The Incoherence of Denying My Death

Journal of Philosophy of Life 4 (2):68-98 (2014)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
The most common way of dealing with the fear of death is denying death. Such denial can take two and only two forms: strategy 1 denies the finality of death; strategy 2 denies the reality of the dying subject. Most religions opt for strategy 1, but Buddhism seems to be an example of the 2nd. All variants of strategy 1 fail, however, and a closer look at the main Buddhist argument reveals that Buddhism in fact does not follow strategy 2. Moreover, there is no other theory that does, and neither can there be. This means that there is no tenable theory that denies death. There may be no universally psychologically acceptable alternative, however, which would mean that if denying death is incoherent, this is an unavoidable incoherence.
PhilPapers/Archive ID
Revision history
Archival date: 2014-05-14
View upload history
References found in this work BETA
A Treatise of Human Nature.Hume, David & Lindsay, A. D.
The Denial of Death.Becker, Ernest
Surviving Death.Johnston, Mark

View all 11 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Added to PP index

Total views
300 ( #10,690 of 41,622 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
13 ( #32,333 of 41,622 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks to external links.