According to physics; matter CANNOT be destroyed, it can only transform. That means that every thought you had send a brain wave that would ripple on for all eternity, which explains a lot of psychic phenomena, but that doesn't explain ghosts, necessarily.
Psychic theories seem to fit very well with science when there is a psychic scientist at hand. But that doesn't prove that we have a soul, it proves that our thoughts will exists forever, it doesn't mean we do. When we die... do we have a soul that will live on?
Do you think that? Is there a sub-physical body there that is controlling our physical body and thought right now?
And if we have a soul, what is it's purpose? Is our soul's purpose to fuse with an all-knowing universe for eternal happiness? To wander the physical world unable to interact with anything in limbo? To reincarnate into another body? To be guided by some soul society type thing in the after life? To go to heaven and live in harmony in a nice society of angels, god, and souls? Or does the energy simply transform into other atoms and physical energy and we just rot in the ground?...
(That's not true. ^_-)
Let me throw out a problem for you to consider.
In order to two things to interact, they must have something in common. This is a very fundamental idea, and it is the idea that led Einstein to the photon and Quantum Physics. Einstein basically said: if light is a wave, and matter is particles, how can light waves cause an electric current (for example, in a solar cell, although he was talking about the photoelectric effect in metals)... they must have something in common. Now we know that they do - matter particles and photons are both energy, and that is how they interact.
So i ask you this: suppose a "soul" does exist. How does it interact with the physical brain? Is the soul energy? And if so, why can we not detect it? Is the soul matter? Same question. It's highly unlikely that we've simply "missed" these things, because we have very advanced and precise measuring devices today. For example, one of my colleagues is making a scale that can almost weigh a single atom.
Maybe the soul is neither energy nor matter, but something else... but in that case, the brain must also be made up of that "something else". And if that's so, why do souls only "attach" to brains and not, for example, computer processing units?
So... what is the soul made of, and how does it interact with the physical brain? What is the mechanism of psychic phenomena? (As a silly example, if i use my mind to bend a spoon... what is going from my "mind" to the spoon, and how does whatever that is affect the molecules of the spoon? Or, if i can sense the thoughts of another person, what is transferring those thoughts?)
Maybe it isn't detected because we just don't know how to detect it. It could be something like when you are blind and a soul is light. It's just something we can't see. It will just be another energy, but it's an unknown energy. It has to be a little bit of energy cause else your head would heat up while thinking a lot.
Is it really hard to believe that we could miss stuff? Do we really have 'advanced and precise measuring devices'? In a discipline like science it is understood that we don't know how high the roof is. We could be close to knowing everything, and than again we could know relatively nothing. I will have to borrow some dialog from men in black.
Frank: [being shaken] The gala- Oof! THE GALAXY IS HERE!!!
Agent K: What do you mean "here"?
Agent J: A galaxy is hundreds of millions of stars and planets. How's it "here"?
Frank: You humans. When're you gonna learn that size doesn't matter? Just 'cause something's important doesn't mean it's not very, very small.
To put that into context here. We humans have a relative view of whats big and small. What's the smallest thing we have been able to break matter down into? quarks? Who's to say a quark isn't an entire universe in and of itself? Seems illigical to us, but currently, we can't be sure.
At the end of men in black the camera zooms out in a google Earth fashion. Zooming out to see the Earth, then our solar system, then the milky way, then a buncha galaxies, and finally it insinuates that our entire universe is inside of a marble. That marble is being tossed at some other marbles by an alien which looks like some sort of game. With our limited perspective, who's to say that absolutly nothing is outside the universe? Maybe it is like the Truman Show movie where our universe is a set and we are on TV for a buncha aliens. All this seems illogical, but then again that's because of our perspective.
Just because it looks like something doesn't make sense doesn't mean it is so. We once believed the world was flat.
That is exactly why I was doubting the existence of a soul, but then again, back in the day the scientists were proud to say they had completed science because there was nothing left to discover. At the moment I'm too tired to remember what timeline, I think it was the late 1700s that a scientist was proud to say science was complete, then a whole string of inventions were invented and more branches of science came into view and countless discoveries were and still are being discovered.
We're advanced now, but we're still advancing
Very true, kinda makes you think too. Old movie, but a good movie, like a classic.
A soul??? What is that... can i eat it?
No I don't think we've got a soul... there are several reason why I say that.
For example... can you see it or... can you proof somehow that there is something.
I doubt it... if there is any proof, show it pls!
I've no good reason to say I do and no good reason to say I don't... I do however had a lifetime to be proven either. ^^
Obviously we have a soul. Actually we cannot see it, but can feel it. Actually our mind and thinking capacities are mainly due to the presence of Soul....
Ah, you're missing the point.
Maybe these things are some kind of novel material that is neither matter nor energy, and maybe psychic force is indeed a truly novel fundamental force unrelated to the other three (or four, depending on your count). Maybe we simply don't have a device capable of measuring it.
But... whatever it is, if it interacts with things that we can see, then we can measure the interaction. And thus, even if we have no way of observing a "soul" directly, we can observe it indirectly by seeing the effects it has on the physical universe (ie, our brains).
This is not a novel idea. Long before we could observe electrons, we knew they existed by their interactions (electricity). And long before we knew about photons, we could observe electromagnetic radiation and its effects - even if the ancient Greeks didn't know what they were looking at, they knew something was there.
Yes, and yes.
We are observing phenomenon at sub-atomic levels directly these days. And we're not only observing at the scale of a few atoms... we're actually building devices that small.
As i said above, maybe "soul stuff" is small enough still that it slips through the cracks, and we're still totally unable to see it... but it must interact with brain cells (otherwise it's not a soul according to the traditional understanding), and if it can interact on that level, then even if we can't see it, we can observe the interaction. Compared to the smallest things we can observe these days, neurons are huge. There is no plausible way we could have missed something tweaking them.
Different questions have different answers at different scales. Temperature is meaningless with a small enough amount of material. The same goes for size.
Below a certain scale, there is no meaning to size - it's a statistically indeterminate question. But beyond a certain scale, it has meaning.
So we can say how high the roof is, provided we stay within the scale where the question makes sense. That means that you can't give the height with infinite precision, or with infinite certainty, but it doesn't make the height a completely meaningless concept as long as you stay in the domain where it makes sense.
All of which misses the point. Sure, maybe the "soul" is something of a nature - or on a level - that we are completely unable to observe, or even conceive of. But if the soul interacts with the brain - which we can observe, easily, even down to the level of neurons - then we can easily observe it indirectly.
i'm always suspicious of "obviously".
Why can't our mind be entirely the product of the neuron interactions in our brain? What is the difference between our brain and an extremely advanced computer... such that we have "souls" and the computer can't? i mean, we can't even come close to the level of complexity (parallelization) in our brains in current computers, but think ahead. Why do we need to assume a soul exists? Why can't our neural nets suffice?
Just because we can see what we can see doesn't mean there is stuff out there we can't see. Radio waves for example. X-Rays? Heck anything outside the visible spectrum we couldn't see until we have equipment to do so. Most of which has no visible interaction with stuff.
There are several examples of science learning things on accident, things we never knew existed. That said I think it would be incrediably presumptuous and close-minded to say that there is nothing we have missed. Or to suggest that we even have a clue how high the ceiling is.
So, what does this mean for our 'Souls'?
That is patent nonsense. If something does not cause an interaction that we can see (or smell, or touch, or whatever), then it can never be observed. Ever. For all intents and purposes, it doesn't exist.
Let's go with x-rays, for example. Can we see x-rays? No, not directly - but we know they're there. How? By the interactions they cause that we can see (bright spots on CRT tubes, for example).
In the case of the soul (and this goes for other psychic phenomena), the claim is that they do interact with the physical universe in a way that produces observable results. In some unspecified way, the soul interacts with the brain - for example, Descartes thought that it happened via the pituitary gland (if i recall) - but however it does it, the claim is that it does do it.
And if there is an interaction that causes an observable result, then it can be measured somehow. Which means that we should be able to tell when the brain is receiving "soul signals" in the same kind of way that we can tell whether an electrical conductor is picking up radio signals. Can't see radio signals either, but we don't need to. We know they're there by virtue of the effects they have on something we can observe (currents in a conductor, in that case).
Which means, in plain English, if the soul exists, even if there is no other possible way to observe it, we will know it exists by being able to detect the effect it has on the brain. And if it has no effect on the brain... then how is it a soul?
Beats me, i can't understand what your objection is. ^_^;
As i've tried to explain to you over and over again, i am not saying that there is nothing we have missed. i am making a specific claim about a specific interaction in a specific place. i am saying that in the brain, if the soul influences it's working, then that cannot be missed by current technology. If we stick any number of various detectors on a brain and wait, there is no way that we can't observe any affects that would have any influence on behaviour or thought processes.
You're trying to paint this as an open-ended problem, suggesting that this soul thing is somewhere out there in the great big universe (or beyond), and so it's possible we could have simply missed it. Sure, if we don't expect something there, the chances of stumbling on it - like we did for x-rays - is exceedingly remote. You could validly argue that we simply haven't stumbled across such a thing yet.
But that's completely ignoring the fact that by the very definition of what this soul thing is supposed to be, we know where to look for it (the brain) and we know what kind of effects it must cause (some kind of effect on the way the neurons work individually or collectively). If it exists, and if it has an effect, then we really can't miss it if we looked. If we look and don't see any effect, then it must not be there.
By your logic, becuase caveman never saw any evidance for x-rays, they don't exist today?
I didn't know a soul had a defination. Truth is we don't know what a soul is, unless I am missing something here. You say it is in the brain? Why not the heart? lungs? Pinky finger? The way I have heard a soul described, it would make more sence to be in the heart. Maybe we are seeing effects but don't know they are related to the soul? Maybe we are seeing no effects yet? Maybe we are cavemen trying to look for x-rays?
Wow... Lots of interesting posts.
I think being neutral on the subject until someone discovers whether or not we have souls by some scientific evidence is the best approach though.
Completely dismissing the idea due to lack of proof sounds illogical, but believing and taking a HUGE leap of mental faith seems illogical too. Thinking of supernatural occurances and instances in parts of reality in a logical manner sounds illogical too.
Ah... Praise occult science for helping us take a step closer to insanity
Seriously though, you are well aware that that is a completely idiotic claim to make. No one that possesses even mediocre intelligence could seriously believe that someone else with even mediocre intelligence would make such a claim. So... what? Why did you put such an idiot claim in my mouth?
If you read something that even remotely sounds like i was making that claim - which i can clearly see by reading back that i did not - then the logical thing to do is ask me if that's what i meant. It's possible that i could have made a typo, or i could have said something that was unclear that might be interpreted that way (although i can plainly see that neither of those things happened in this case). Or, maybe you just misread. In any case, what makes more sense... that there was some kind of communication failure, or that i believe such a patently idiotic claim? Obviously that there was a communication failure. And if that's the case, why didn't you just ask me to clarify instead of attributing such an idiot idea to me when you know that it can't really be what i believe?
Of course it does. ^_^; What, have you been tossing around a meaningless word all these posts?
A soul is the alleged non-physical or spiritual part of a person.
You're missing something here. ^_^;
We don't need to know exactly what the composition of a soul is to know what it is any more than we need to know what's inside the frame of a microwave to know what one is. Do you know what's inside a microwave, or even how one works? Probably not, and if you do, you still have to admit that that vast majority of people do not. But do you think they can't identify or use one?
No, i said it interacts with the brain. i said - over and over - that in order to find the soul, all we have to do is look in the brain for the signs of this interaction, because we know that wherever or whatever the soul is, it must ultimately interact with the brain.
Sure, whatever. ^_^; It could be in the nose, or the genitals, or on Mars for men and Venus for women. Doesn't matter.
We don't know where it is, but we don't need to, because we know exactly where to start looking for it.
As i've said over and over, that's ridiculously unlikely. If the soul affects the brain enough to affect our decisions and personality (and it must, by definition), then it must have a significant effect on neurons. We simply can't miss anything that big with current technology, and we haven't seen anything so far that we can't explain.
No, to put it in context, we are people who have technology capable of identifying individual pigeons, trying to look for a particular skyscraper in a city. The effects the soul would have to have on the brain, compared to what we are capable of seeing, are even far bigger than that, but still. Could we miss it on our first pass? Easily. Our second pass? Probably. Our tenth pass? Getting unlikely. Our hundredth pass? i think not. Our thousandth pass? Come on.
Lets' repeat that for the sake of argument...
So I am guessing a break down in communication? Maybe a mis-type on your part? Sorry to jump to the caveman analogy so quickly. But as it stands cavemen saw no interaction with x-rays. But today we can observe them.
All I am trying to say is that we are trying to figure out what a soul is (OP). You are saying your view, which seem like you know what a soul is, maybe not all the details, but the basics. And I am saying my view which is that we don't know, soul might not even exist. What we are viewing as "interaction from the soul" maybe anything but. In a scientific world we question EVERYTHING, you have to. Until you prove something, with such little evidance I can't see how you could come to such a concrete conclusion.
Yes, there has been a breakdown in communication, and no i did not mistype. You have just failed to understand the meaning of the word "can".
"If something does not cause an interaction that we can see...". Not: "If something does not cause an interaction that we do see...". The cavemen did not see x-rays. But with the right tools, they could have seen x-rays.
i said - in plain English - that something must interact with the universe in order to be practically considered to exist. "If something does not cause an interaction that we can see (or smell, or touch or whatever)...": do not x-rays cause such an interaction? Obviously they do, because we can observe them now. Unless you've got evidence otherwise, they were interacting with the universe in caveman days, too, whether the cavemen were aware of it or not.
If the soul doesn't interact with the universe at all, then it might as well not exist. But every concept of the soul suggests that it not only does interact with the universe, it interacts with a specific part of the universe - people.
To repeat myself: "We don't need to know exactly what the composition of a soul is to know what it is..."
Obviously original poster and everyone here knows what we're all talking about when someone says soul. No one thinks that this →☎← is a soul, or that this →✈← is a soul. We all know that we mean some part of a human being (and possibly other intelligences) that is not part of their corporeal body. (It may, in fact, survive the corporeal body and have existed before the corporeal body did, but that's not important to what i'm talking about.)
Everyone here understands that - even you when you're not trying to be deliberately disingenuous. You knew what was meant by the title of this thread, which is why you came here.
All right, you don't know precisely what the constituent parts of a soul are, where it resides, or even whether it really exists. Fine. We get that. No one here knows those things. But we don't need to. As long as we stick to talking about those few things that we do know about a soul, we'll do fine.
And no, there is nothing wrong or "unscientific" about going about things that way. We can talk about the science of dragons even though no one knows precisely what they are made of, where they reside, or even whether they even exist. Or, if you want a scientific example, people talked about the science of what later became known as genes long before we knew about DNA, it's structure, or even where to look for it. They simply constrained the discussion to the things they did know about genes, and, as a result, ended up pretty much predicting the whole field.
i am not saying "my view". i have no view - i think souls are nonsense.
But i can consider what a soul is supposed to be and the implications of that - and that is what exactly i did. According to what a soul is supposed to be, i can find that - whatever it's made of, wherever it is - there must be evidence of it in the brain. If you have any quibbles with the logic i used to arrive at that conclusion, let's hear them. But feigning complete ignorance is serving no purpose.
And i am saying - yet again - that we don't need to know, and it doesn't matter if it exists or not. The very definition of what a soul is - which we all know, despite your denials, because we couldn't have this conversation otherwise - is all we need. Just start with that, and use a little logic.
i have no idea what this sentence is supposed to mean.
Ya, you know what? If this is your idea of what science is: "True scientists are the same way, in search for truth and block out anything else when they think they find it." then you'll have to pardon me if i don't think you're much of an expert on the scientific world.
But for the record, the reason i can come to a concrete conclusion is simple. i start with the basic idea of what a soul is supposed to be, then i use logic to consider the implications of that idea, then i test the implications. Simple.
Or perhaps you would prefer it in scientific terms. According to the definition of what a soul is supposed to be - a component of human consciousness that is not part of the physical body - the soul must interact with the physical body, or else it has no relationship to it whatsoever. And since the physical seat of human consciousness is in the brain, the soul must interact with the brain, directly or indirectly. Thus we have our hypothesis - there will be an interaction in the brain that cannot be traced to simply physical processes. We take that hypothesis, test it by looking for interactions, and so far we've found none. Can we explain this result away while still keeping the theory of a soul? No, not given today's sensitive monitoring equipment. Therefore, we discard the theory of a soul.
Its definitely possible that we do have a soul but maybe we dont.
i honestly dont know. Sometimes i believe we do, that its the source of the life in our bodies but maybe its just a myth, created by a raving old man far back in the past.
i do hope all humans have a soul, if not damn that would be bad
I won't bore you will the technical and logical aspects of why the existence of the alleged soul is an impossibility, however, although my energy is exponentially waning I will attempt to convey a summary of data of the falsity of the human soul.
1. I am too sleepy to fully explain (actually I have the data stored on my PC but I am too lazy 2 "ctrl+c" +"ctrl+v" it), but basically (my intellectual capacity is waning) what would control the soul? Would the soul just spontaneously control itself? Think about it. The soul is given a choice, A or B. The soul could either use quantum probability (random chance) to decide, or access data/algorithms which would determine the selection chosen. When you actually contemplate, you will realize (hopefully) that the soul is merely a concept, with no basis whatsoever in reality.
2. There would have to be an infinite amount of souls inside each soul. Think about when you exceed the angle of incidence vector in a bunch of mirrors. You see an *infinite amount of yourselves in the mirror. Now thats like the soul's brain. There would have to be a never ending amount of souls inside each soul to actually fulfill the concept of soul. (Soul needs to choose A or B, instead of using random chance or an algorithm like structure Soul uses another soul to decide....the newly appointed soul of course has the same problem...
3. Like Indi said...there are no detectable effects on the human brain from a soul. Ie. all mechanical aspects follow predictable parameters.
4. There is no technology currently available at this time to determine whether or not AI are conscious.
Finally, I believe that the brain is conscious (well, at least mine) but that there is no "soul" (meaning of soul being a mystical external device.) My belief is that we are our brains nothing more. Our conscious experience is essentially watching a movie or game demo, and that "free-will" is simply an illusion created when we (our brain) encounters excessive computational thresholds when tasked with a/n decision/s.
Indi, my interpretation was that he was trying to convey the idea that his belief of the soul is that it can "control" or "alter" the brain in any possible way. Ie. the soul could arbitrarly invert our percieved colors, etc.
I missed a space, the sentance should read:
What we are viewing as "interaction from the soul" may be anything but.
Meaning that whatever we are seeing as an "interaction from the soul" may be something else that we don't know about.
Do we have a soul?
Firstly, God creates the soul "in his image".
It is made of two parts "male and female."
The soul separates at incarnation so that each part gains its own individuality. - Usually a soul and its soul mate may incarnate in the same country or close enough so that there is a likelihood of meeting during their lifetime.
When the soul incarnates it obtains a material body and a spirit body.
What is the soul?
"Our soul has personality and individuality, and could be likened to a container full of feelings, emotions, desires, inspirations and aspirations, and these feelings, emotions, desires, inspirations and aspirations cause thoughts as a sub-process of the soul if the soul has developed to a point in soul progression where it can understand its true existence.
Our FEELINGS are our true nature, and our true self, and all other things that are of the soul, such as the spirit of the soul, its active force, its spirit body, its mind, its material body and so forth, are all
manifestations of the soul in various forms. Manifestations, although of the soul or from the soul, are not the soul."
Usually most people live there entire lives without an awareness of their soul and never experience an awakening of the soul. Our society is one built on mental pursuits and logical thinking. And from infancy we are taught to live in our minds and expressions of the soul are not allowed in one way or the other.
"Sometimes when we were children, we wanted to do things which our parents said were not possible, and so we may have suppressed those desires and passions. Often, as adults, we then believe that we cannot allow our true desires and passions to rule our life, and so we spend much of our time as adults telling our emotions and feelings to shut-up and be quiet, just like our parents did with us when we were children.
The result of this is that we finish up placing a cage around ourselves emotionally, and the bars of the cage to the mind are just as real as the bars of a prison. Any emotions that are outside of these bars we deny, minimize, justify or shift the blame for, and these are the methods we often use to keep the emotions away from us.
Then, during the awakening of our soul, we begin the process of taking down these bars one by one. As we do, we often can feel so overwhelmed by our own feelings (particularly those experienced as children) that we feel bombarded by them, and as a result, we may desire to withdraw into a state of depression (which is really the suppression of all emotion). But, as we continue to pray to our Father for the courage to follow the process of soul awakening, we come to understand more and more that we must allow all feelings.
So, some of the most powerful words we can tell ourselves are: I am allowed to feel ....!
I am emotion. I am feeling. I am love. I am courageous. I am powerful. I am sad. I am angry. I am hurt. I am allowed to feel, I am allowed to see, I am allowed to hear, I am allowed to think, I am allowed to be. I know what I know, I think what I think, I feel what I feel, I see what I see, I hear what I hear.
I was taught by my parents, and then I taught myself and my own children, that I am not allowed to feel what I feel, because my parents taught me that my feelings are wrong most of the time. Big boys don’t cry. So what is a boy who cries? That did not hurt very much, so what are you crying about. Shut-up, or I’ll give you something to cry about. Tears became a sign of weakness, gentleness a personality flaw. We grow into an adult of action, but that same adult does not know WHY they are acting the way they are, because they believe they are not allowed to trust their own feelings.
We are taught that we are not allowed to think what we think. Others are always right, and we are wrong. Being right is good and being wrong is bad. Nothing is ever viewed as an experience from which we learned and can learn. We become afraid to even think something that is defined by others as wrong, expecting that we are going to be punished. We come to accept others thoughts as our own truth, rather than feeling that we are allowed to think our own thoughts.
We are not allowed to see what we see. When we see some injustice, we are taught to ignore it. Don’t get involved. When we see others sadness, we are taught it is their problem, don’t waste time listening to them. They just have not got their own life together, and you don’t want to be with people who are not happy. When we see the lie, we act as if it is not seen. Mummy kissed another man, and I saw it, but I was not allowed to say that to daddy, since it would hurt him. So we learn to become blind to what our own eyes see.
We are not allowed to hear what we hear. We hear the truth but when we tell it, because of our parent’s shame or guilt, we are rebuked. Daddy said to mummy that he does not like you, and so that is why I am not allowed to come to visit you. But mummy told me I am not allowed to tell you that. Truth to a child is so simple, and yet as adults it is turned into a complicated web of deceit. So we learn to ignore truth, and never to state it. When we ignore truth, and are not able to state it freely, how can we ever come to live in truth?
So we need to unlearn all of these lessons life has erroneously taught us. As we do this, what we believed to be truth becomes the error, and all of our methods and ways of thinking, feeling, and acting come into question, and this is very confronting for us, and in particular, confronting emotionally. "Items in quotation marks excerpt from AJ Miller letters on Emotional Clearing pt 1 and 2 and Encouragement.
I hope that this has helped some to begin to have a concept of the soul. It is exist as I have personally begun a process of awakening of the soul and know that it is real.
You have accurately described various flaws in human culture. Now I would appreciate hearing your thesis of the human soul. (Other than simply stating we have a soul with no actual proof, and posting non-sense about how humans don't have any [positive] emotions. Forgive me if I am incorrectly interpreting but it seems to me your opinion of the human psyche is that all humans are essentialy carbon copies of each other. You believe that noone except followers of your cult/religion are incapable of the "awakening"? (Standard human emotion.))
Every soul is incarnated to become individualised.
And everyone is capable of becoming aware of their own soul.
Its not only for a few but for all. If anyone has ever felt great emotion of joy or even the deep pain of grief at the lost of a loved one, if you allow yourself to feel that feeling fully then you have begin to allow your soul to be expressed.
The soul is capable of a varety of emotions and its not just those that are negative.
The soul can be explained in this way...
You cannot see the wind, it exists and you can feel its operations, hear its effects with the rustle of the trees, or even with a great hurricane.
Inasmuch as there are many earthly things that we may not understand, like the wind, and its movements, it is not strange that one would not understand the things of the spirit:
“THE WIND BLOWS WHERE IT LISTS, AND THOU HEAREST THE SOUND THEREOF, BUT CANST NOT TELL WHENCE IT COMES, AND WHITHER IT GOES; SO IT IS WITH THE SPIRITUAL REBIRTH.”(St. John, Chapter 3, verse 8 ).
The soul must be felt.
You can accurately render visual output of the wind based on vector/temperature/solar calculations.
"And everyone is capable of becoming aware of their own soul. " Indeed, that is true. However, based on that statement, I assume you believe that "Not everyone is capable of becoming aware of their own soul. " This, although un-disprovable, I find ridiculously pretentious.
Nevertheless, you still haven't actually explained the soul, you have merely explained some of its traits.
yes, we do have soul. Else verb `soul` would not existed.
I find it funny that you just explained wind with traits, but that's not good enough for a soul?
I did not explain "wind" by documenting traits, I (very) briefly summarized how meterologists are able to graphically render the approximate location of wind.
It doesn't matter what the soul is supposed to be able to do. If it has any effect, then we can observe it. This wind example that's flying around uses precisely the same logic. Even if we can't "see" the wind directly, if it has an effect, we can observe the effect. And by observing the effect, we can not only discover the existence of wind, but learn about it and its properties.
Lets put numbers to it. How big is a neuron? The head of a neuron ranges from on the order of a few micrometers to a hundred micrometers. We have instruments that can resolve on the order of hundreds of picometers. Even while the brain is "live" and working, we have MEG that can resolve on the order of a few hundred micrometers in near real time. Can we miss a cluster of neurons firing with no apparent physical cause? Not bloody likely.
Now, i said "near real time", not "real time". But is it close enough? When a neuron fires, it goes into a rest period after firing on the order of a millisecond, during which it cannot fire again. The temporal resolution of MEG is better than a millisecond, so it's better than we need. Can we miss firings of neurons between scanning passes? No, not bloody likely.
Neurons are electrochemical. So what are the electronic potentials we're dealing with? When a neuron fires, it's a spike on the order of almost 0.1 V. Yes, 0.1 V. Even cheap voltmeters sold at the hardware store can measure a few millivolts. Lab equipment can measure picovolts. Can we miss a neuron firing while scanning electrically? Not bloody likely.
What about the chemical part? Well, the average concentration of neurotransmitters is on the order of tens of nanomoles per liter. We can detect on the order of picomoles per liter. (And when we get lab-on-a-chip working... we will be able to do even better.) Can we miss any mysteriously created pockets of neurotransmitters? Not bloody likely.
What am i missing? What else can effect the function of the brain? Magnetic fields? The magnetic fields of the brain are on the order of a few femtoteslas. We can detect just about that. The chance of missing something that would affect the brain is really, really small. Anything else? Can neurons be affected by thermal noise? Probably not in any practical manner, but if so, consider the kinds of levels that might be an influence compared to the kinds of sensitivity our modern equipment can detect.
Now put all of the evidence acquired by all of those methods together, and consider the likelihood that we've simply missed something in the brain. Ludicrously bloody unlikely.
But all of that is just the icing on the cake. The real issue is the firing patterns of the neurons. Allegedly, this soul thing has something to do with our conscience and/or decision making. When we make a decision, we're not using one or two neurons, we're using vast nets of tens of thousands of them. A single neuron here or there won't affect our decision, so if this soul really does play any part in who we are, it must have a huge effect. It must be affecting thousands or even tens of thousands of neurons, or even more. How could we miss that?
You see? i don't need to speculate on what a soul is, what it's made of, where it is, or even exactly how it might be influencing the brain. The fact that it is allegedly influencing influencing behaviour and/or personality in some unspecified way is all i need. Given just that information, that's enough to extrapolate the rest.
Beautifully explained Indi.
As far as I've learned. We are souls that have a material body and a spirit body.
You wouldn't exist if you didn't have a soul.
Do you have feelings, longings, inspirations, aspirations and desires?
If you do then those feelings, longs, inspirations, aspirations and desires emanate from your soul.
Habits that some may find impossible to break, once a person has a desire to change. Some people make every effort to change but something always sabotages the intention.
It could be trying to loose weight whether its 5 lbs or more. There are hundreds of weight loss/management products and equipment on the market.
For others who desire to quit smoking there's quit smoking kits. But I've personally known people who couldn't quit smoking even with those kits (patches/gums, etc).
Usually you'd think that all one needs is will power to change. Even for those trying willpower, there seems to be some driving force that keeps them from doing what needs to be done effectively to make lasting changes. Especially when, from a logical standpoint the reasons for change far outweigh the reasons to stay the same.
We all live in this world. All it takes is observing yourself, friends, family and consider these things that can't be explained from a logical aspect. The soul is powerful and this example of trying to change something when you really want to change but can't, demonstrates the existence of your soul. It is who you really are.
Indi, now, why didn't you say that to begin with?
Beautiful answer, but the question still remains, how can you be sure it is a soul making all the huh-bub and not something else we haven't discovered yet? You see leaves rustling about in a pretty dance, how do you know it's the wind and not some guy with a leaf blower (although, obviously you would hear/see the guy, but the idea still remains, that it was something else that did the movement, not just what we theorize.)
Tis a good theory, aye, but scale be the problem. You see, sure, we can measure farther then anyother time before, but we don't know how far down the rabit hole goes Alice. In caveman times a spec of sand was pretty flippin small, now-a-days? it's HUGE comparaed to what we can see now. Who knows how HUGE a proton will be in the next 100 years.
We are picking up stuff in the mind, unexplained stuff, no doubt about that. But to scientifically say for certain it is something we don't know, I would raise an eye-brow, as you have to Christianity and many of their explainations.
So, good theory, but absolute fact, I think we can still logically question, which was my point all along.
Actually we already know about stuff smaller than a proton, ie. subatomic particles, ie. quarks gluons etc. And we theorize that their are even tinier elements, called "strings."
I do not believe in souls, however, it is possible that they exist on a quantum level.
Rocks exist. Do rocks have souls?
There is no human emotion that we cannot completely explain by means of chemical interactions, evolutionary advantage or social conditioning.
i see. So souls can get hooked on cocaine?
You seriously underestimate the power your biology has over you. It is trivial to completely change your personality - completely change "who you are" - simply by adjusting your biochemistry. Given the right chemicals, some select modifications to your brain and/or intense conditioning, i could turn you into whatever kind of person i wanted to, from a raging jerk, to the meekest pushover.
As for addiction, we already have models that completely explain addition as a mixture of chemical dependence (including chemical dependence on our own neurotransmitters, cf. "adrenaline junkies") and conditioning. It is possible to "break" any addiction without too much trouble in a controlled environment - the problem is that in reality most people don't have the luxury of being able to control their environment in a practical manner. For example, part of the reason a smoker needs a cigarette in certain situations is because those situations act as a classical (Pavlovian) stimulus that triggers an involuntary chemical response (that is, some body chemical drops that creates a desire for a cigarette, which causes that chemical to increase). So seeing Jane in the break room at lunch causes a chemical response in your body that creates a craving for a cigarette. If that is the only stimulus that causes the desire for a cigarette, then all you'd have to do is stay away from Jane and the break room, and the problem would be solved. However, short of quitting your job, that is probably not an easy thing to do in practice. That's why people have a hard time quitting - they're usually forced into the same circumstances that trigger the desire for the drug over and over. If you could manage to simply change your life to eliminate the bad stimuli, quitting would be a snap, but not only is that impractical, it is often impossible to figure out exactly what the stimuli are.
There is no need for a soul to explain addiction.
From my first post in this thread: "It's highly unlikely that we've simply "missed" these things, because we have very advanced and precise measuring devices today. For example, one of my colleagues is making a scale that can almost weigh a single atom."
From my second post in this thread: "We are observing phenomenon at sub-atomic levels directly these days. And we're not only observing at the scale of a few atoms... we're actually building devices that small.... maybe "soul stuff" is small enough still that it slips through the cracks, and we're still totally unable to see it... but it must interact with brain cells (otherwise it's not a soul according to the traditional understanding), and if it can interact on that level, then even if we can't see it, we can observe the interaction. Compared to the smallest things we can observe these days, neurons are huge. There is no plausible way we could have missed something tweaking them."
My third post dealt with another issue.
From my fourth post in this thread: "As i've tried to explain to you over and over again, i am not saying that there is nothing we have missed. i am making a specific claim about a specific interaction in a specific place. i am saying that in the brain, if the soul influences it's working, then that cannot be missed by current technology. If we stick any number of various detectors on a brain and wait, there is no way that we can't observe any affects that would have any influence on behaviour or thought processes."
Need i go on?
Tsk, your mind is so disordered. This new line of questioning is completely out in left field. It has nothing to do with the claims i have made.
i am not making any claims about other things we haven't discovered yet, nor am i pointing to any specific phenomenon and saying that the soul is the only thing that could have caused it.
To use your leaf blower analogy:
Someone has claimed that there is an invisible person with a leaf blower who runs around blowing things and making a mess, and that he does this often. i doubt this, so i set up cameras all over the place to watch what happens, and meticulously observe them for a few decades. The camera coverage is so good that it is exceedingly unlikely that even a single leaf could be blown without being seen. After decades of careful observation, i have observed messes being made by people playing in piles of leaves, messes being made by careless raking, and so on, but i have never observed one single leaf flutter without someone (visible) moving it. Not one.
Does this prove that the invisible leaf blower man does not exist? No. But it sure does do a number on the claim that he makes messes often.
What you're trying to do is change the question to disguise the fact that it's pretty much a closed issue. You're now asking: "Well how do you know that it's not the wind making the leaves move and not the invisible leaf blower man or some other unknown force?" i say: "What leaves have been moved by an unseen force that need to be explained at all?" i don't need to consider alternate hypotheses to explain mysterious phenomena in the brain... there are no mysterious phenomena.
According to the definition of a soul, there is no way we could have missed the interaction of such a soul with the human brain. There have never been any mysterious interactions that need explaining by the soul or any other possible cause. Ever.
Does this mean the soul doesn't exist? No. But it does mean that something is wrong with the idea of it. Either the definition of the soul we use on a day to day basis (and in every single religion that describes the concept) is simply wrong, or there is no such thing as a soul. Either there is no soul, or it is not what you think it is.
There is a lower limit - the Planck length.
But again... that's not an issue here. If the soul really does play any part in who we are, it must be observable on a scale a hell of a lot bigger than the radius of a proton. At some level of indirection, the soul must be able to move a human being (otherwise it plays no part in who we are). How can we miss something on that scale? Then all we have to do is work backwards from there: What caused that motion? What caused the cause of that motion? And so on. Eventually we will either get to a point where the cause is beyond our ability to observe - which leaves room for a soul - or we get to a point where we've simply traced the cause back to its primary source (in the body at least) and we're done. To date, there is no effect that we have been unable to trace back to a primary source. In other words, there's no room for a soul. Which brings us back to the same problem. Either the soul does not exist, or we are defining it wrong.
Mm, close. If our current science is correct, there is nothing smaller than a quark (or a gluon) - they have no size.
And if String Theory is right, quarks would be strings. A string vibrating in such and such a manner would be a down quark, for example.
But you know, if you want to talk about something that we've observed that's smaller than a proton... an electron? ^_^;
Fu, even that cop out won't work for much longer:
You know, most people think that quantum mechanics is some strange and esoteric field of study that really has no practical evidence, or any practical use. That's nonsense. Quantum mechanics is a solid and well-established science that has produced craploads of our modern technology. Why, just a couple days ago the Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded to Fert & Grünberg for Giant Magnetoresitance (which i'm surprised no one mentioned on Frihost... easy points) - which is probably used in the reader head of the hard drive you're using right now, and represents one of the first applications of spintronics (using the spin of charged particles, a quantum mechanics concept)... and that was actually invented in the 80's.
There are basically two ways of obtaining knowledge of something that you know nothing about.
The most common one used on earh is to experiment, which all major sciences do. This results in continual study of the unknown or unexplained. The thing is that sometimes this discovery is relative, based on the equipment used, time and money and even upon what the experimenter hopes to find.
The results from this kind of study can also be seen as incomplete in that maybe in one century some man or woman will discover lets say radiation. The next century another person may discover how to use radiation effectively, etc. Hopely you get my point, its like building blocks, takes years. Scientists are still trying to discover cures for cancer.
So some people are quite knowledgeable scientifically. That is their experience and I respect that. Science is not the only field from which one can obtain knowledge of the earth and its functions.
There is another way, and its faster by far.
Go directly to the Creator of all things. Ask him/her and you will learn about the world, the laws and the whys.
My analogy, though we have many brillant minds here, it is not needed but I like analogies.
Cap'n Crunch cereal. Say you want to know what makes it so good. or what its made of. You can run a series of experiments to find out the properties, etc of the cereal. Or read the box. But anyway my point is you can bypass the manufacturer and run tests on it to see whats in the stuff, how does it stay so crunchy whatever.
Or you can go straight to the manufacturer and lets just say its not some state secret and they would readily give it to anyone who wants to know.
From my point of view getting the details from the product creator seems to be the fastest route. Not only would you learn whats in it but the best way to enjoy said creation etc.
All I'm saying is that knowledge of the earth and our selves is readily available. You don't have to believe any old crap someone tells you just cause they say it. Or because they went to university and studied stuff, what is being taught is relative. What preachers go on about as it relates to God and whatever is relative.
What I say is relative. Just do your own experiment. If you believe that there is someone who created this world, since you or I obviously didn't (and we're all here running around like chickens with our heads cut off) then you talk to the creator and ask to know. Simple as that. I'm sure you'll get some answers. Just pay attention and you'll get loads.
Can't figure out if you have a soul or are one them ask about that.
But history has shown and continues to show that man does not have the answers and even though we as a people are trying to find it. Its taking too long and the whole world is screwed up from logical thinking and lack of true heart and soul (ie feeling, passion).
This poem has given me much to contemplate on in the last few days and is very fitting for allowing oneself to be. To be truthful in allowing your soul to express its true passions, desires, longs, inspirations and aspirations. The world is run by people living in their mind- logical and scientifc and often very heartless. And, since I'm sure you all live in the same world I do, its not a happy place for everyone in it. We can shut ourselves up from the trouble in the world for only so long but it affects all of us whether we like it or not.
Our Greatest Fear
(a quote from Marianne Williamson)
Our greatest fear is not that we are inadequate,
but that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness, that frightens us.
We ask ourselves,
Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, handsome, talented and fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you.
We were born to make manifest the glory of God within us.
It is not just in some, it is in everyone.
And, as we let our own light shine,
we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our fear, our presence automatically liberates others.
Well, Indi, I was actually referring to the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle (we cannot accurately measure something because the action of measuring will alter its original state), and more precisely, Schrodinger's Cat Problem. In order for the conventional understanding of soul to exist, the soul would have to be very weak and only affect the brain on a quantum level, ie. because of the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle, we cannot measure or predict its effects. Imagine getting a computer with an array of 10x10^24 digits following no conceivable pattern. This array is used for any "random" functions in say, C#. Now, unless you had a life span of a tree, there would be no possible way of knowing what the function "random" would return (without either talking with the coder or hacking C#.) That is like the soul. It affects the outcome of atoms on the quantum level, but there would be no way of predicting what the next outcome would be.
By the way, I do not believe in the existence of souls. [^\/^]
I'm going to take the unpopular position of man as a souless mass fooled in to consciousness by the continuity of his senses. I'm not forcing said unhappy view on anyone else, but my life has not illuminated a different answer thus far.
(That's not the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle. That's the observer effect.)
But if i understand what you're saying, you're saying that maybe the soul does interact with the brain, but on a level below what is possible to measure. Correct? You also mention that the interaction might be impossible to recognize when it happens, impossible to distinguish from the regular statistical randomness at the quantum level.
My response to that is that you're looking in the wrong place. The soul influences the personality and/or decisions, and the atom of thought is the neuron. It doesn't matter where or how the soul interacts with the physical universe, or how powerful that interaction is... it must eventually affect a neuron (actually, many thousands of neurons... but ignore that for now). Neurons are so much larger than the quantum level that they can be treated deterministically without any practical error (if you make the assumption that a neuron is completely deterministic, you can use it for the lifetime of the universe a thousand times over and never see one case where it is wrong). So quantum indeterminacy doesn't matter. We will clearly see the result of a soul's interaction, and be able to identify it as an unaccounted for interaction without having to resort to statistics, even if the origin of that interaction is impossible to detect and/or deterministically identify out of the background noise of quantum fluctuating.
In brief, let's make the assumption that the soul does interact below the level where it can be detected. Somehow that interaction must influence a neuron, which means one of two things. Either 1.) the assumption is wrong, and the interaction is much larger than the level we thought, or 2.) there are shitloads of interactions with a net effect that is large enough to influence a neuron. Either way, we'll see something that we can't explain by physical processes that we are aware of now.
You're making the same mistake as coeus - sometimes the best way to answer a question is to discard it. The question you are asking (which is essentially the same thing that coeus was saying) is: "how can one be sure that they can't possibly miss the physical evidence of a soul?" The correct answer to that is, of course: "they can't be sure, ever." But that hides the fact that we don't need to find any physical evidence for the soul (at least, not at this stage of the investigation). All we need to do is show that nothing unexplained is happening to the neurons of the brain.
You've heard the expression: "when you hear hoof beats, think horses, not zebras", right? Well if there are no hoof beats, why speculate about what's causing them?
yeah... i believe so. but after i study psychology, i had thought that, human soul is actually is human's mind. the thinking makes human thinks that it is a soul. because mind (you cannot see) and soul, you cannot see either. why soul and mind are same for me?? ok, first, when a person is dead, then they consider that soul is gone from the body, and that mean the body had no sense at all after that. and the same thing, if a person is comma, the soul is still there. but if i convert it to another thinking, in terms of 'mind', the mind is still there. but he or she was uncounscious. meaning he or she had no thinking. the brain is still function but under counscious. so, for me, mind and soul are the same.
Physical traits come from heritage and these traits give each person their unique appearance. What people do and how they react to things is all from their brain. It is just a way of thinking. If you want to call "soul" a person's behavior or uniqueness that is just fine. That seems to be what it means. On the religious side to "soul", I don't believe in souls leaving the body when it dies. In my opinion that is just not logical.
Number one: matter Cannot be created or destroyed, it can only be transformed to and from energy. And I dare you prove me wrong.
okay, both "things" are made up of atoms, happy?
I believe in the existence of a soul because it was found out by experiment that body loses mass straight after death. Make out of it what you want, but something that was there( and I don't mean life) before death wasn't there after. So I believe in a thing called soul. (i.e. I believe in 'soul' because the whole Idea is comforting)
If matter has been completely converted to energy, then it is not matter any more, it is energy. Therefore, it has been destroyed. If a building has been completely converted to a fine particulate dust, is it still a building, or has the building been destroyed?
And before you put your foot in your mouth and claim that matter is energy, it is not. Matter is related to energy, and can be converted to and from energy. That does not make them the same thing. If they were the same thing, we would not need to convert between them, now would we?
Confused. Are you claiming the soul is made of atoms? So, if i were to throw you into a black hole, or heat you up to a high enough temperature that atoms come apart, your soul would be destroyed?
You are mistaken. Please read the first sentence of this article.
The photoelectric effect does not only apply to metals. But Einstein was indeed talking specifically about the photoelectric effect in metals. My statement was perfectly and precisely accurate in every detail.
In future, do take care to express yourself in a correct way.
You are referring to the infamous 21 grams.
Read the third paragraph of this Wikipedia page. That experiment has long been considered ridiculous. For details of his "experiment", there is a Snopes article.
And of course, you might give Google a try, one of these days. i recommend Google Scholar.
Nothing was there. The experiment was a joke. i would call it a fraud, but i don't know if it was as bad as it was due to deliberate deception or just incompetence. i'll give it the benefit of the doubt.
First off, I'm sure you know what I meant by destroyin matter (if not i meant whipe clean from existance , not convert it into energy)). Your argument in this case is nothing more than word play.
Now I do not claim soul is made up of atoms, i was simply making a joke that if you take any two things they would have to be made up of atoms....nevermind. bad joke.
Well I can honestly say that's not my fault. My Physics books states that Photoelectric effect is emmission of electrons from metals when a electromagnetic radiation of suitable frequency is shined on the metal. so it is not my fault I'm being taught wrong information.
I heard about this 'experiment a long time ago, before I could have went and read it up on wikipedia, I was never told it was proved wrong. And anyway I gave you my real reason for beleiving in soul in the end. But why did you give me that link?
i don't really care what you meant. You were correcting me. You should have asked what i meant.
Yes, quite bad. Here are two things: "a ray of sunshine" and "an idea". Neither is made of atoms. Of are you going to accuse me of word play again?
It is your fault. You did not pay close enough attention to what you were taught. Your physics book is not wrong. The photoelectric effect is the emission of electrons from a metal with an incident EM beam. It is also the emission of electrons from a semiconductor with an incident EM beam, and the emission of electrons from any kind of material with an incident EM beam. Did your physics text tell you that it was only the emission of electrons from a metal? Probably not.
It is your responsibility to practice good comprehension skills when listening to your teachers and reading your text books. They cannot predict the infinite number of ways a student can fail to learn the lesson if they don't listen properly. If they say X and you hear Y, that is not their fault, it is yours. Your book/teacher said that the effect occurs in metals and you heard that it only occurs in metals. Whose fault is that?
Even worse, when confronted with a possibly contradiction, instead of asking for confirmation, you opted to shoot your mouth off and show off what you thought you knew. You know, i didn't have that link stored in my memory. It was a <10 second Google search. i typed in "photoelectric effect non-metals" and hit go, then picked the first link with a description that looked simplistic (ie, not a physics journal article). When someone says something that disagrees with what you "know", the first thing to do is check. Then, and only then, do you start mouthing off - if that's what you want to do.
<30 seconds on Google. Searched for "soul mass" or something like that, found the WIkipedia page, and the Snopes article. That's how easy it was.
You know, if you really based your belief on the existence of a soul based on this so-called experiment... didn't it ever occur to you to look it up? i mean... you heard this rumour from somewhere... maybe from the movie ads a couple years back... and you just swallowed it wholesale without ever once bothering to check it? Even worse, you go around using it to justify your beliefs when you never even once bothered to check it?
Because your "reason" is a fallacy - specifically, the fallacy i linked to. As you said: "I believe in 'soul' because the whole Idea is comforting". As the link says:
What that means is that - in reality - you have no reason for believing in the existence of a soul. Fair enough, you're free to believe whatever you want. But if that's the case... why were you replying to me? What were you saying? Just "to hell with your argument, i want to believe in the soul"?