Does the Soul Exist?

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Is there a soul?

Humans have souls, but animals and other living things do not
1
6%
Both animals and humans have souls
6
38%
The soul does not exist
6
38%
Other
3
19%
 
Total votes: 16

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Summerlander
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby Summerlander » 29 Oct 2014 03:06

If you want to believe in ghost stories, buildit, go right ahead. But just remember that science has a tendency to narrow those gaps that people like you love to fill with fantasy. Just wait for the day when science develops a cogent theory for quantum gravity which explains away all the "spooky" stuff. Quantum entanglement isn't as mysterious as you think (or hope to be) and I have already explained why that is ages ago. If you are interested in quantum theory, try reading Brian Cox's "The Quantum Universe." I have. In there you will find a plausible explanation for entanglement within a theoretical model that describes the universe like a gravitational well.

I'll use the following analogy to quickly convey what the book propounds: The universe is like a bowl full of marbles. The marbles are the atoms that interact. Remove one from the base and you affect the position of the rest. No information travels faster than light. No laws are violated. It is merely a chain reaction exuding the illusion of "spookiness." Like general relativity breaking the speed of light but without doing so in a sense...

In the history of mankind, science is very recent. I'd say it's in its adolescence as it were. But already it has a tendency to dispel myths and inflate scepticism. We no longer see thunder and eclipses as works of the gods. We no longer deem waterfalls as miracles. Miracles of that magnitude no longer exist. They appear to have been reduced to seances that take place in dark rooms where credulous people get excited about raps on a table.

What does that tell you, buildit?

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HAGART
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby HAGART » 29 Oct 2014 05:51

Summerlander wrote:dualists and vitalists


I'm glad I have no idea what those mean, so I can see things without labels and won't even label myself. I'll let others do that. We all tend to polarize everything until we debate whether it was raining or if it was sprinkling. (Reference to that other thread I made...)

The original question was 4 words: Does the Soul Exist?
Funny how the answers are so long and it stirs up emotions, when the question was so simple.

I remember when I first brought it up, (shared the link earlier), I was amazed that life-and-death, and religion even entered the equation. I never asked that! The concept is merely is there a 'soul'?

Now Quantum Mechanics are part of the equation! :roll:

This all goes back in history to the core of all questions that have plagued humanity for all time:
Is it "wraining or spwinkling"? ;)
If we all lucid dreamed this world would be a better place.

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buildit
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby buildit » 29 Oct 2014 11:30

Summerlander wrote:What does that tell you, buildit?


It tells me we will either soon devalue life as only worth the cost of the chemicals a body is made of or we will find there is more to the picture than our instruments can see at current.
Is Lucid Dreaming the brains preparation for the next step of human evolution when we can escape the corporeal bond of our bodies?

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Summerlander
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby Summerlander » 29 Oct 2014 11:58

@ Hagart: Ok. The shortest answer. There is no evidence that the soul exist. Plenty of evidence suggesting that it doesn't - particularly from the realm of neuroscience.

@ buildit: If a medium is found that appears to control bodies and survives their destruction, it will have to be a physical substance by default for how else can it interact with matter? Secondly, this soul still wouldn't explain consciousness. Scientists would have to ask what makes it consciously aware. Another soul inside? It still doesn't answer it. What about what makes that one conscious and the one inside it ad infinitum? What is the mechanism that makes it possible?

No soul, no self, not even ectoplasm is found in the bodies of living things. The Cartesian theory is so absurd that philosophy alone can expose it as non-explanatory. No evidence supports vitalism and those monists who say everything is made of consciousness are just talking out of their arses and not helping at all.

Finally, the absence of souls in living bodies doesn't have to devalue life. We can still love our relatives and friends and have a good time with them while we still can. We can also marvel at the universe and wonder how certain things happen. There is still so much to discover,so much to explore!

Isn't it amazing that nature stumbled upon a system of echolocation in bats over millions of years long before we developed radar and sonar? Isn't it wonderful that all life had simple mineral beginnings in the primordial soup and once a replicator molecule emerged, it led to the amazing complexity we see today? What about intelligent life out there?

Here is food for thought for those of you who think consciousness demands an elan vital. A long time ago, an inventor and a philosopher had a debate. The inventor said he was planning to construct a device that could record and later replay Beethoven's Ninth Symphony with lifelike fidelity. The philosopher said it was impossible on the basis that there are so many different voices of different ranges and timbres, bowed strings, brass, woodwind, percussion, and that therefore the recording device would have to be a monstrosity with millions of annotations and would require human slaves for the vocal parts.

The philosopher's argument may be compelling, but the inventor came up with the Fourier system that involves a single wavy line chiseled into a long-playing disc or magnetically represented on a tape or optically on the soundtrack of a film. The philosopher had mistaken his failure of imagination for an insight into necessity. The brain generates consciousness. It provides us with a sense of self. The self is an illusion - meaning it's not what it seems...

The physical universe is already wonderful enough, buildit.

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"Empty cognizance of one taste, suffused with knowing, is your unmistaken nature, the uncontrived original state. when not altering what is, allow it to be as it is, and the awakened state is right now spontaneously present."

- Padmasambhava

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deschainXIX
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby deschainXIX » 29 Oct 2014 23:54

HAGART wrote:The original question was 4 words: Does the Soul Exist?
Funny how the answers are so long and it stirs up emotions, when the question was so simple.


Well ... the idea of the soul, as with religion, arose as an explanation for things we once did not understand. The reason the soul lingers in spite of modern neurological understanding is due to its substantial connection to religion and several other misconceptions. To address the soul, we must also address the reasons people think the soul exists.

buildit wrote:It tells me we will either soon devalue life as only worth the cost of the chemicals a body is made of or we will find there is more to the picture than our instruments can see at current.


The abandonment of notions of the soul does not leave a moral vacuum, buildit. We do not need antiquated fairy tales to find our sense of morality--science can easily give us that. Anyone who thinks that humanity will revert to murderous anarchy with no regard for human life if the soul was disproved, obviously regards humanity in a very scornful, dehumanizing way. Deluding ourselves into thinking such primitive, unscientific thoughts as "the human psyche is an ethereal ghost residing within my tissue that is released upon death" has no evidence to support it nor any reason to scrape the bottom of the empty barrel in panicked search for a grain of salt to cling to. Your sole evidence here seems to be that people would start murdering each other with abandon if they didn't believe in a soul. Even if this was the case (which is is NOT), it does not prove the existence of the soul. Nonetheless, argument wholly invalid.

Science gives us a better morality than any supernatural belief ever has. We formulate appropriate value for life in relation to a creature's threshold for suffering. We're okay with killing insects en masse (cockroach extermination), but we actively protect primates like apes and gorillas. And above all, we value human life. There is a reason for this. We can mathematically and scientifically calculate the exact levels of suffering a creature can experience and comprehend by counting nerves and brain potency.

Never does a psychopath pause for a moment before beheading his victim and think to himself, "But wait ... this person has a soul. They have a soul, by God!" and then release the victim. They don't pause at all. Because they lack empathy.

Empathy is a naturally-arising mechanism within human psychology, and it is vital in understanding why morality exists outside of the soul. We understand the concept of suffering (because we have suffered ourselves), and we understand that others can experience suffering. This connection, in combination with empathy, equates to a fairly wholesome morality, in my opinion. People who do not feel this way have a mental deficiency called sociopathy. It is a defect. People do not kill one another (without reason or passion) unless they lack some mental faculty within themselves. We understand our own suffering, ergo we would try to prevent such an experience ever happening to another living thing.
Well said.

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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby buildit » 30 Oct 2014 00:24

deschainXIX wrote:The abandonment of notions of the soul does not leave a moral vacuum, buildit. We do not need antiquated fairy tales to find our sense of morality--science can easily give us that.

I doubt that and many would say the moral fiber of many for the current generation is low if nonexistent. Many people find the proliferation of self absorbed, back stabbing, tech dependent and often socially inept young people to be growing at an alarming rate. Of course it's politically incorrect to hurt their psyches by telling them this. :roll:
Science gives us a better morality than any supernatural belief ever has. We formulate appropriate value for life in relation to a creature's threshold for suffering. We're okay with killing insects en masse (cockroach extermination), but we actively protect primates like apes and gorillas. And above all, we value human life. There is a reason for this. We can mathematically and scientifically calculate the exact levels of suffering a creature can experience and comprehend by counting nerves and brain potency.

Here again it's not as true as the mass media would have you think as many reported "science facts" about health and the environment are either not true, proven false or misinterpreted by those reporting the news.
Is Lucid Dreaming the brains preparation for the next step of human evolution when we can escape the corporeal bond of our bodies?

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deschainXIX
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby deschainXIX » 30 Oct 2014 01:07

buildit wrote:I doubt that and many would say the moral fiber of many for the current generation is low if nonexistent. Many people find the proliferation of self absorbed, back stabbing, tech dependent and often socially inept young people to be growing at an alarming rate. Of course it's politically incorrect to hurt their psyches by telling them this.


Even if I accept that to to be true ... What does that have to do with anything said? We are discussing the association between materialism and immorality. Also, it's not as if there is some great disbelief of the soul among the current generation. The current generation believes in the soul just like the previous. There is no relation here.

buildit wrote:Here again it's not as true as the mass media would have you think as many reported "science facts" about health and the environment are either not true, proven false or misinterpreted by those reporting the news.


Hmm. Those sound very much like the words of a paranoid schizophrenic. But I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and say only one thing: Anyone who is getting their scientific (or otherwise) information from the "mass media" or Fox News is not purporting any viable ideals. Trust me.
Well said.

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buildit
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby buildit » 30 Oct 2014 01:23

deschainXIX wrote: The current generation believes in the soul just like the previous. There is no relation here.

You comment was that
Science gives us a better morality than any supernatural belief ever has.




buildit wrote:Here again it's not as true as the mass media would have you think as many reported "science facts" about health and the environment are either not true, proven false or misinterpreted by those reporting the news.


Hmm. Those sound very much like the words of a paranoid schizophrenic. But I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and say only one thing: Anyone who is getting their scientific (or otherwise) information from the "mass media" or Fox News is not purporting any viable ideals. Trust me.

Who writes the text books? Even basic facts reported in school books is often wrong. An example, how many senses do the science books say animals have? Five right? Sense of taste, smell, sight, hearing and touch. It's taught in almost every Biology book. Yet they forgot sense of balance, acceleration, senses that detect the CO2 build up within your blood. So who lied? Science or the mass media that published it?
Is Lucid Dreaming the brains preparation for the next step of human evolution when we can escape the corporeal bond of our bodies?

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deschainXIX
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby deschainXIX » 30 Oct 2014 01:57

buildit wrote:You comment was that


Guess I can't really do anything here except try to break it down into small enough pieces for you...

1-You argued that without a soul, humanity descends into barbarism.
2-I argued that science provides us plenty of morality without ghost stories to scare us into submission.
3-You argued that "the current generation" is currently descending into barbarism, and that is (somehow?) proof that the disbelief in a soul leads to immorality.
4-I argued several things, but the one you chose to reply to was that the current generation is not undergoing some kind of great secular transformation like you claim.

So ... how are the two statements, "Science gives us a better morality than any supernatural belief ever has," and, "The current generation believes in the soul just like the previous. There is not relation here." infringing on one another or relating in a condemning way? How?

Stop nitpicking. Maybe actually try to build an argument.


buildit wrote:Who writes the text books? Even basic facts reported in school books is often wrong. An example, how many senses do the science books say animals have? Five right? Sense of taste, smell, sight, hearing and touch. It's taught in almost every Biology book. Yet they forgot sense of balance, acceleration, senses that detect the CO2 build up within your blood. So who lied? Science or the mass media that published it?


:lol: Are you serious?
They teach the five primary senses to children in the first grade, buildit. A simple Google search affirms this. No high school Biology textbook teaches anyone about "the five senses." The point of The 5 is not scientific information, but to help young children understand the concept of perception and comprehend their personal experience by relating various perceptive sensations to external, easily-identifiable anatomical apparatuses (eyes, ears, nose). Do you not see the purpose of the five senses in nurturing a child's understanding of the world? No person in serious pursuit of scientific knowledge is going to select a 1st grade curriculum textbook and read about The 5 and thus be misled by "those evil, lying, conniving Illuminati running the media and SCIENCE ITSELF."
Well said.

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buildit
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby buildit » 30 Oct 2014 12:01

deschainXIX wrote:
buildit wrote:You comment was that


Guess I can't really do anything here except try to break it down into small enough pieces for you...

1-You argued that without a soul, humanity descends into barbarism.
2-I argued that science provides us plenty of morality without ghost stories to scare us into submission.
3-You argued that "the current generation" is currently descending into barbarism, and that is (somehow?) proof that the disbelief in a soul leads to immorality.
4-I argued several things, but the one you chose to reply to was that the current generation is not undergoing some kind of great secular transformation like you claim.

So ... how are the two statements, "Science gives us a better morality than any supernatural belief ever has," and, "The current generation believes in the soul just like the previous. There is not relation here." infringing on one another or relating in a condemning way? How?

Stop nitpicking. Maybe actually try to build an argument.


IS the current generation the most technology oriented one ever?
Show where the current generation believes as much in a soul and the religious implications. I don't believe you that it is just as firm as previous generations in that belief.
So Given science is a larger part of every persons life and the loss of the belief in there being a soul by most modern technologically advanced people, I argue that the world in advanced culture has not gotten morally better.
Maybe you are part of the current generation and this is why you can't understand what I'm saying?
Is Lucid Dreaming the brains preparation for the next step of human evolution when we can escape the corporeal bond of our bodies?


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