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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R99
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby R99 » 25 Nov 2014 06:35

nesgirl wrote:and I am a negative person anyways


U r saying it as not big deal, Y so negativity??? Negative thinking always lead to self destruction both mentally an physically. at least try to overcome this attitude. :?
I see the Truth now.

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HAGART
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby HAGART » 25 Nov 2014 07:44

"The soul is as the soul does."

I rearranged a few words from the famous, 'Forrest Gump Quote'.

What does it even mean, "Stupid is as stupid does?" I have no friggen' idea! We'd be better off explaining that line from the movie than trying to explain a soul! Nobody knows, not even Tom Hanks!

Drops the Mic!
(and walks away)..........
If we all lucid dreamed this world would be a better place.

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deschainXIX
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby deschainXIX » 25 Nov 2014 12:35

Realism is often misinterpreted as pessimism. A wholly wrong position. Being conscious of the fact that a vastitude of humanity currently suffers in sub-developed countries, dying of malformation and disease and even at each other's own hands. Thinking about these sorts of things does not make you pessimistic or negative. It simply means you don't regularly wrap yourself in the electric blankets of denial and ignorance in order to stay warm. You're willing to join the rest of humanity out there in the cold, not giving yourself the luxury of not thinking about them.

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Well said.

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Summerlander
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby Summerlander » 25 Nov 2014 12:46

"Whatever happens, where or when, we're prone to wonder who or what's responsible. This leads us to discover explanations that we might not otherwise imagine, and that help us predict and control not only what happens in the world, but also what happens in our minds. But what if those same tendencies should lead us to imagine things and causes that do not exist? Then we'll invent false gods and superstitions and see their hand in every chance coincidence. Indeed, perhaps that strange word "I" - as used in "I just had a good idea" - reflects the selfsame tendency. If you're compelled to find some cause that causes everything you do - why, then, that something needs a name. You call it "me." I call it 'you.'"

- Marvin Minsky

"For my part, when I enter most intimately into what I call myself, I always stumble on some particular perception or other, or heat or cold, light or shade, love or hatred, pain or pleasure. I never can catch 'myself' at any time without a perception, and never can observe anything but the perception... If anyone, upon serious and unprejudiced reflection, thinks he has a different notion of 'himself,' I must confess I can reason no longer with him. All I can allow him is, that he may be in the right as well as I, and that we are essentially different in this particular. He may, perhaps, perceive something simple and continued, which he calls 'himself'; though I am certain there is no such principle in me."

- David Hume

I find these quotes quite powerful and quite telling. If the blindspot is in the way of the dark spot on a sheet of paper, there is no perception of the dark spot and no perception of the absence of information either (no dark blotch indicating the blindspot). You simply don't feel like there is a blindspot. No sensory input equals no perception and thus no consciousness of what might be there externally. The self is, thus, a user illusion begotten by a complex organ such as the brain, which, is complex enough in higher order intentionalities, allows the organism to recognise itself in the mirror, to be self-aware. Why shouldn't it if it can equally react to the perception of objects in the external world. Given the power of language, and feeling the need to label everything it perceives, why shouldn't the organism be able to report to itself, "This is my hand," or "There is another individual in front of me with hands similar to mine." Even further, "The mirror is a reflective surface," "I can see myself, I know what my face looks like."

If the brain dies, the powers of perception - which constitute the self - logically die with it. So far neuroscience has amassed a body of evidence, highlighting how every aspect of the mind can be expunged via cerebral dysfunction. It even shows us that people can lose memory or become delusional. Other conditions appear to show us that a single body can generate several fragmentary personalities. Even ordinary dreaming indicates that diminished brain activity in the relevant areas can render us somewhat mentally retarded and gullible during REM phase. Even the fluctuating lucid dream state isn't impervious to bizarre thinking as pointed out by Alan Worsley (see the dream science forum).

We get nothing from those who claim to be certain that dualism is true. Not a shred of convincing evidence. And you wonder why we are inclined to think that there is no afterlife?

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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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nesgirl
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby nesgirl » 26 Nov 2014 03:24

deschainXIX wrote:Realism is often misinterpreted as pessimism. A wholly wrong position. Being conscious of the fact that a vastitude of humanity currently suffers in sub-developed countries, dying of malformation and disease and even at each other's own hands. Thinking about these sorts of things does not make you pessimistic or negative. It simply means you don't regularly wrap yourself in the electric blankets of denial and ignorance in order to stay warm. You're willing to join the rest of humanity out there in the cold, not giving yourself the luxury of not thinking about them.

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Most of real life should be viewed for its negativity, and we should see it for how negative it is. We should consider and count how many things there are in life that can make our species and other species miserable, and keep on counting those things. Think about how depressing real life is while in real life, with many of the negative things that happen in real life, especially with some of those scientific theories (no free will means I am essentially being programmed by the universe, or in other words, a slave...cue more depressing thoughts), that our species cannot be trusted, and that'll be enough to turn a person into a pessimist.

U r saying it as not big deal, Y so negativity??? Negative thinking always lead to self destruction both mentally an physically. at least try to overcome this attitude

First of all I have mostly negative mood swings, which cause me to be negative most of the time. Second of all, I view reality as a very negative place. I don't see hardly anything in reality that is at all positive, and science makes reality even less of a likable place, and makes me hate nearly everything in reality the more science has more theories. There is absolutely no reason to be positive about anything in this reality.

And other than this guy's romantic views (although that's what usually happens in a partnership), and his hate on others (I just strongly distrust others), I so like his negative view on life. I like it when others can find all the negative reasons to hate reality: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UfnAOcBirAs

We get nothing from those who claim to be certain that dualism is true. Not a shred of convincing evidence. And you wonder why we are inclined to think that there is no afterlife?


What if we don't want to find out about that anyways? Why should we live our lives in complete fear and dread thinking about something so frightening, when some people already hate life because of scientific beliefs and the effects nature, changes, and their own species have had on them to begin with? IF life is already negative enough, we really don't need anything else negative.
Goodbye forever...
I dare you Summer and Deschain, to find where I am hiding, and try to attack.

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R99
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby R99 » 26 Nov 2014 06:11

nesgirl wrote:First of all I have mostly negative mood swings, which cause me to be negative most of the time. Second of all, I view reality as a very negative place. I don't see hardly anything in reality that is at all positive, and science makes reality even less of a likable place, and makes me hate nearly everything in reality the more science has more theories. There is absolutely no reason to be positive about anything in this reality.

And other than this guy's romantic views (although that's what usually happens in a partnership), and his hate on others (I just strongly distrust others), I so like his negative view on life. I like it when others can find all the negative reasons to hate reality: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UfnAOcBirAs



Seriously???? nesgirl? its just a song to make some money. watch these for a change.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ufQpgYSDRdU
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PT-HBl2TVtI

u just need a start. and if u want a good song better than Theory Of Dead Man. watch this
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PivWY9wn5ps. Ignore it, if its too flashy for u.
I see the Truth now.

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R99
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby R99 » 26 Nov 2014 07:21

First of all let me clear something up, "I dont believe in afterlife." But i believe in so called soul. most people want to call it as a "Soul", but i believe it as an Energy. a complicated life form that keep our body or any living thing functional. and ofcoz it cant be detected through our current science state we r. but it doesnt mean its not there. It is an energy and its also called as "Life Force" . and science already have a theory about energy, and it goes like this- "Energy can be neither created nor destroyed", if u put it simply.... And we all know its called "Law of conservation of Energy"

If Energy cant be created or destroyed, its gotta have a reservoir, that stores all of this energy ready to distributed through entire universe. a human body is organic machine. its need energy to run. and if u say food is our fuel. then i say its the oil to run it smoothly. see.. thats what i meant by it cant be detected by our current science. we make the current environment to enter an energy to a single cell through our mother's womb that contains ovum with the help of father's reproductive cell. and if its not healthy cells, then the energy cant be contained by that developing body and it dies. (in my terms body dies. energy exits from the body and return to universe's energy reservoir. and after it... thats what i always wanted to know.may be it enters another host or body or it becomes some other energy to fuel different kind of energy source. )

No matter what science says about brain function or how it dies, or there is no brain activity after death. there is gotta be something more to it. and thats what i wanted to know.

And if u want to see this life force or energy or soul what ever in action learn more about Qi energy, a traditional Chinese theory about life force. u can always multiply and use an energy if u know how to use it correctly. look around every moving or living thing is converting this energy to do a particular task.
I see the Truth now.

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Summerlander
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby Summerlander » 26 Nov 2014 12:16

Any biologist will tell you that organic bodies need not some hypothetical elan vital to keep them functional. This living activity has been set in motion long ago when the chemicals and minerals from the primordial Earth stumbled upon molecular replicators which eventually lead to the peculiar DNA.

The mind is merely the software of the brain. This means that there is a physical complexity that can obviously beget conscious experiences. A theory of consciousness that has any explanatory power at all will have to posit and show how consciousness is generated by unconscious processes. In the same token, life has to ultimately come from non-living material processes.

It makes no sense to begin by saying that we are conscious because something lies outside physical reality and is beyond the scope of science. This sort of thinking, this fallacious presumption, is not helpful and poses obstacles in our quest to decipher the cerebral code. Such vitalistic fantasies will only discourage proper search. It's like saying, "Don't bother looking at neurons, human behaviour and psychology... don't bother looking at anything because there is this chi energy that cannot be detected by us, by the way, which is responsible for consciousness..."

To say there is a soul, as I said before, is like attempting to explain consciousness with consciousness. It is a non-explanation, a non-sequitur. It's aggravating or complicating the problem even further and giving up for the sake of perpetuating the mysticism that enshrines consciousness. And these questions will forever remain unanswered: "How is the soul conscious? How does chi give life? If they grossly manipulate physical bodies, why can't we detect them?"

I'm sorry, R99, but I do not see where you are coming from. You say you don't believe in an afterlife and yet you clearly posit an immortal conscious energy that survives physical death and goes on to reincarnate. This is dogma at odds with what has been demonstrated by neuroscience so far.

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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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R99
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby R99 » 26 Nov 2014 14:24

U said "so far". so there is more to discover....... it goes and on.. i cant prove it, unless i come up with proof. my search for knowledge is at its beginning. i am just pointing out my theories. its ur choice what to make up with it. 2 years ago i was christian, but now i am a human.
I see the Truth now.

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Summerlander
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Re: Does the Soul Exist?

Postby Summerlander » 26 Nov 2014 19:17

I did say "so far" and there are certainly more discoveries to be made. I mean, just look at the cosmological expanse! But not knowing everything does not grant fantasists the right to fill in the noetic holes with whatever takes their fancy. And indeed, so far, scientific evidence (especially where brain deficits are concerned) makes it highly likely that death is final. All I am saying is that this is where the evidence points.

But I will say this. If it turns out that, somehow, the evidence has been misleading, and a physicist or biologist discovers something that we previously missed which proves, beyond all shadow of a doubt, that consciousness survives physical death, I will duly recant my position.

But we must meticulously assess what we find. If something like a soul was detected (as a materialist I find it inconceivable) it would not automatically validate an afterlife or reincarnation. We'd have to question its properties and endurance. In a similar vein, an afterlife does not validate religious doctrine and it would not be proof of the existence of God either.

By the way, you speak of the conservation of energy in the universe but you conflate it with metaphysics. I would like to point out that cosmologists have pretty much determined this universe's impending doom. Everything will come to an end as space-time continues to expand indefinitely. So... so much for preservation.

Let me finalise my point on that with an analogy. You drop a ball on the floor and you watch it bounce. What do you think happens? Each bounce is lower than the previous as its energy peters out. You may say that the perceived dissipation of that energy is merely this one being scattered elsewhere, perhaps the ground, but I am telling you that the life was in the bouncing - not in the well-known Newtonian energies that get transmitted. The energy that peters out in the ball analogy alludes to the chemical processes in the biology of an organism. If the cerebral engine stops, this activity naturally ceases. The bouncing was the councious life, which slows down with age, and may become diminished with memory loss or in some cases identity disorders. When the ball stops, the robot is no longer functional. Its glorious software will never be seen again. And the ball stops in your court.

As the saying goes, extraordinary claims demand extraordinary evidence. As far as I can tell, the dead do not come back to life and the living can become tellingly flawed mentally. Even in the healthiest of states consciousness proves to be discontinuous and often weak. Now you say, we are not the body, we are the soul. So tell me, where is it? Why readily believe in that proposition? And why should it become unconscious in the bodies of those who faint? And if it becomes unconscious, then it can't be consciousness itself by definition. Are we to posit another homunculus inside this magical pearl and another homunculus to explain the agency of the previous one ad infinitum?

See why the concept only aggravates the problem. Occam's razor: Why dismiss the possibility that the physical body alone can generate consciousness when it seems very probable, and, as you've just admitted to me, we don't know enough about physical reality yet. Thus, the complexity of the arrangement of matter in the form of a working brain may (as most likely does) hold the key to solve the riddle.

It's something like a computational system that's been upgraded over millions of years, for goodness sakes! :-)

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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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