Ep. 89 – Is the Whole Greater than the Sum of Its Parts? | Dr. Andrew Brenner

Is a “whole” something greater than the sum of its parts? Or, is a “whole” identical to the sum of its parts?

Dr. Andrew Brenner joins me for a fun conversation about mereology – the study of parts and wholes. While it might seem like an esoteric topic, it’s actually central to metaphysics, and the conclusions have implications on things as varied as the philosophy of mind, personal identity, and even the philosophy of mathematics and geometry.

Both Dr. Brenner and I agreed in this episode: the only things that exist are simple substances. There aren’t actually any composite objects, though we act like there are for easy navigation in the world.

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