The first point I wish to put forward is this: man does not have a body, but is his body—his own body. Another way of expressing it is: Man is a way of being a body. Thus, I seem to subscribe now to naturalistic or materialistic reductionism. I hope to be able to prove that I am not so rash. If my philosophical anthropology has some analogues, they can be detected in a number of contemporary philosophical elucidations.3 This does not mean that my ideas are derived from such elucidations, and the ensuing contentions; it only means that they are often in tune with some of them. Like a certain number of contemporary philosophers, but with vastly different assumptions, I try to shun both classical monism (spiritualistic or materialistic) and classical dualism, such as that exemplified in the Cartesian, or Cartesian–Augustinian, idea of an entirely spiritual substance more or less uncomfortably lodged in the body. Basically, what I contend is that nothing can be detected in man that absolutely transcends his body; and that man is not reducible to a material substance. A human being is not a reality, or a cluster of realities, unified by a certain element or principle existing “beyond” or “beneath” it. Man can be defined tentatively as his living. If man is formally defined as a set, he is a set
whose only subset is himself.
(Ferrater Mora, In: Tree Spanish Philosophers, p. 214)