D. Alan Shewmon:

[My argument] has revealed the total absence of any compelling philosophical or scientific reason to interpret brain-mediated somatic integration as constitutive of the human organism; all the evidence is compatible with, indeed, positively suggests, the conclusion that brainmediated somatic integration maintains the organism’s health or promotes its survival, but does not constitute it as a living whole in the first place. By the same token, there is absolutely no compelling philosophical or scientific reason to suppose that brain death, however total and irreversible, is ipso facto the death of a human being as such . . . [The] accusation that I am in conflict with Church teaching about death relies . . . not only on a mischaracterization of my position, but also on a mischaracterization of Church teaching itself. In point of fact, the Magisterium does not formally oblige us to hold that the brain is the master organ of somatic integration, or that its death is therefore the death of the human being as such. Nor does the hylemorphism espoused by Boethius, Aquinas, and the Council of Vienne entail any such claim.