So what is the soul?

Discuss philosophical questions regarding theism (and atheism), and discuss religion as it relates to philosophy. This includes any philosophical discussions that happen to be about god, gods, or a 'higher power' or the belief of them. This also generally includes philosophical topics about organized or ritualistic mysticism or about organized, common or ritualistic beliefs in the existence of supernatural phenomenon.
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Count Lucanor
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Re: So what is the soul?

Post by Count Lucanor » October 22nd, 2017, 10:59 pm

Chili wrote:
If I say that behavior is what the brain does, how is that different? Where is "mind" in that case?
It is different in that it's wrong. An organism, a person, behaves.
Chili wrote: I note that your answer did not address my question regarding subjective experience.

Is the idea that the brain "does" subjective experience an assumption or an experimental result?
Same answer as above: it is the subject, the organism, a person, who experiences. When they do, their bodies (of which the brain is part) participate in that experience.

Darshan
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Re: So what is the soul?

Post by Darshan » October 22nd, 2017, 11:12 pm

Earthellism agrees that children appear to be unable to understand death but that is an illusion. Watch them as they crave a favorite toy or blanket. Watch them watch happy cartoons and simplistic shows. They truly are gifts from God and angels from heaven who are here to experience human love after experiencing God's infinite love. As we age some fear death more but young children do not fear death which to them is eternal sleep and they only fear suffering. Their toys and cartoons are a fraction of the love they experienced before birth and they appear closer to God as a child in that they only yearn for love and happiness in their toys. Children are more in touch with their souls in that love is the most important thing to them. The greatest proof is the way a dying child consoles his parents, something that happens every day everywhere. Such conversations are well documented and many have personal accounts of these events.

Chili
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Re: So what is the soul?

Post by Chili » October 22nd, 2017, 11:20 pm

Count Lucanor wrote:
Chili wrote:
If I say that behavior is what the brain does, how is that different? Where is "mind" in that case?
It is different in that it's wrong. An organism, a person, behaves.


You make it sound as if a person has agency - which is to say that they are a source of causation. If you are so hard-nosed about physics, why not say that the person is composed of cause-and-effect chains which go back to the big bang? Why so humanistic? Is there experimental evidence for what you say?
Chili wrote: I note that your answer did not address my question regarding subjective experience.

Is the idea that the brain "does" subjective experience an assumption or an experimental result?
Same answer as above: it is the subject, the organism, a person, who experiences. When they do, their bodies (of which the brain is part) participate in that experience.[/quote]

These are perfectly fine beliefs, but are they any less a matter of "belief" than various religious ideas?

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SimpleGuy
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Re: So what is the soul?

Post by SimpleGuy » October 23rd, 2017, 3:51 am

Albert Tatlock wrote:
SimpleGuy wrote:Which states that something imperishabel seems to be attached to the human body which has persistence.
I wonder what they meant by "seems"? Normal observation would suggest that everything of the body is all too perishable.
The important thing is that the soul did exist after the tellings of this text even before you were born and even after you are dead. The picture of a personal soul that is existent before one is born is something not so common.

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Albert Tatlock
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Re: So what is the soul?

Post by Albert Tatlock » October 23rd, 2017, 12:38 pm

SimpleGuy wrote: The important thing is that the soul did exist after the tellings of this text even before you were born and even after you are dead. The picture of a personal soul that is existent before one is born is something not so common.
It seems to me that the only evidence for the existence of the soul that exists is to be found in one's imagination.

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Re: So what is the soul?

Post by Chili » October 23rd, 2017, 12:46 pm

Albert Tatlock wrote:It seems to me that the only evidence for the existence of the soul that exists is to be found in one's imagination.
Can you articulate why you don't view minds the same way as you view souls (presuming you do) ?

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Albert Tatlock
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Re: So what is the soul?

Post by Albert Tatlock » October 23rd, 2017, 1:12 pm

Chili wrote: Can you articulate why you don't view minds the same way as you view souls (presuming you do) ?
I have reason to believe that minds exist.

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Re: So what is the soul?

Post by Chili » October 23rd, 2017, 1:24 pm

Albert Tatlock wrote:
Chili wrote: Can you articulate why you don't view minds the same way as you view souls (presuming you do) ?
I have reason to believe that minds exist.
People tell each other that they "have reason" to believe all kinds of things. Would you ask for further detail about miracles, Greek Gods, various afterlife scenarios, etc?

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Albert Tatlock
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Re: So what is the soul?

Post by Albert Tatlock » October 23rd, 2017, 1:29 pm

Chili wrote: People tell each other that they "have reason" to believe all kinds of things. Would you ask for further detail about miracles, Greek Gods, various afterlife scenarios, etc?
Do you have a more straightforward way of making your point? I'm not sure what you're getting at.

Chili
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Re: So what is the soul?

Post by Chili » October 23rd, 2017, 1:31 pm

Albert Tatlock wrote:
Chili wrote: People tell each other that they "have reason" to believe all kinds of things. Would you ask for further detail about miracles, Greek Gods, various afterlife scenarios, etc?
Do you have a more straightforward way of making your point? I'm not sure what you're getting at.
I'll pass, I think. If you feel that "having reason" is any kind of answer, we are speaking past each other.

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Albert Tatlock
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Re: So what is the soul?

Post by Albert Tatlock » October 23rd, 2017, 1:36 pm

Chili wrote: I'll pass, I think.
Good decision.

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Count Lucanor
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Re: So what is the soul?

Post by Count Lucanor » October 23rd, 2017, 11:07 pm

Chili wrote: You make it sound as if a person has agency -
As if? You mean it wasn't explicit enough that I wanted to say a person has agency?
Chili wrote:which is to say that they are a source of causation. If you are so hard-nosed about physics, why not say that the person is composed of cause-and-effect chains which go back to the big bang?
I would not say that because that's not how biology works. The relationships between organisms and their environment is complex, with lots of variables in play, not a simple mechanistic unidirectional process.
Chili wrote:
These are perfectly fine beliefs, but are they any less a matter of "belief" than various religious ideas?
Religious ideas are superstitions, rationalizations out of ignorance. Don't reach the level of philosophical discourse or science.

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Re: So what is the soul?

Post by Chili » October 23rd, 2017, 11:25 pm

The way biology and chemistry work is that they are built on physics. There isn't presumed to be anything going on there that contradicts the view of the same atoms and molecules from physics. If it could be demonstrated that there were, this would be a blow to physics and the fundamental model would have to be adjusted. The fact that the relationship between organisms and environment is *complex* doesn't mean it isn't built on a mountain of individual particle interactions - simple mechanistic unidirectional processes. Complexity out of simplicity - is this what you refer to? Or is "complexity" you refer to something more pixie dust bordering on religion? You are expressing many beliefs here which run counter to science and I wonder if you are aware of them.

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Greta
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Re: So what is the soul?

Post by Greta » October 23rd, 2017, 11:45 pm

Chilli:

Atoms, molecules and compounds could each be thought of as having their own character in that they react to stimuli in certain distinctive ways. The same could be said for us; a soul is basically "that which does things this way". So, after you are dead other beings will be born with similar characteristics simply through the probabilities.

So, in a sense, the kind of person (or being) you is, if not immortal, will at least persist over numerous generations. What of the individual?

Unlike our general types, our particular instance of "I AM", appears to not have a tremendous long term posthumous future. After all, it's not even present during deep sleep and was pretty base and animalistic when we were infants and toddlers.

However, NDEs make clear that as the brain is shutting down some pretty awesome things can happen, and it would seem quite possible that our very final moment of I AM will be our best (esp. noting that the dying brain is apparently flooded with dopamine on the way out).

Maybe there are other dimensions to which the I AM goes? However, that is speculation, although a nice thought and cannot be discounted, given that our relationship with the arrow of time is more about perception than actual reality.

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Atreyu
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Re: So what is the soul?

Post by Atreyu » October 24th, 2017, 6:46 pm

I see I need to get the thread back on track by restating the historical definition of the "soul".

The soul is the finer matter/energy which differentiates a living organism from non-living matter.

This "finer" matter/energy is beyond the direct investigation of science, just as any individual subatomic particle is, and, again, just as in the case of bosons, their existence is inferred by certain phenomena, in this case, 'life'. Obviously, there must be something present in life which is not present in non-life, in spite of the fact that it cannot be normally perceived, otherwise there would be no clear dualism between 'life' and 'non-life' in our direct experience in the first place.

But there clearly is...

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