If we are animals, can we survive in a disembodied state, having lost all of our bodies, retaining only soul or form?
Here is a standard thought:
Metabolic processes, homeostasis, etc. are defining features of being animals.
In a disembodied state, one cannot have such processes.
Something that is an animal is essentially an animal.
So something that is an animal cannot survive in a disembodied state.
But here’s a parody argument:
Fur and mammalian inner ear bones (say) are defining features of being mammals.
In a furless and internally earless state, one cannot have such structures.
Something that is a mammal is essentially a mammal.
So something that is a mammal cannot survive in a furless and internally earless state.
I think 5-7 are no less plausible than 1-3. But 8 is clearly false: clearly, it is metaphysically possible to become a defective mammal that is furless and internally earless.
The obvious problem with 5, or with the inferences drawn from 5, is that what is definitory of being a mammal is being such that one should to have fur and such-and-such an inner ear. The same problem afflicts 2: why not say that being such that one should have these processes and features is definitory of being a mammal.