Psychopannychy, term




What does the term “psychopannychy” mean?

The most common term that one hears to describe the concept of deceased persons experiencing complete unconsciousness before the resurrection is soul sleep. A far more technical term that one may hear is psychopannychy. John Calvin helped to coin this term in a publication he wrote entitled Psychopannychia during the Reformation. The term itself is a combination of the Greek words psuchē, most commonly rendered “soul,” and pannuchios, meaning “lasting all the night” (LS).[1]

The problem with the concept of “soul sleep” is that in theological practice it is not a period of unconsciousness between death and resurrection, but actually one of individual extinction and re-creation—as it is predicated on the notion that the physical human body makes up the entire person. This should cause considerable doubt whether or not the person re-created at the resurrection is actually the same person who had authentically lived on Earth before, or a close facsimile.


[1] LS, 590.

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