Notices

View Poll Results: A member of the spieces Homo sapiens is in posession of a soul.

Voters
19. You may not vote on this poll
  • I agree

    8 42.11%
  • I disagree

    11 57.89%
Results 1 to 52 of 52

Thread: soul and evolution

  1. #1 soul and evolution 
    New Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Germany
    Posts
    2
    I believe in the evolution. But I do not believe that animals, meaning all Multicellular organisms for example: dogs or Jellyfish, have a soul. Or do they?
    If they don't and we do, then when did our ancestors (who evolved from monkeys to humans) gain their soul? and how? I came as far as writting down the main difference between Humans and animals, which is, that mentally healthy humans have reason and animals do not (or not as much as we do). So if that is the only difference then our reason must be connected to our soul.
    Reason= the capacity for rational thought or inference or discrimination (http://dictionary.die.net/reason)
    Thought is the sum of the functions of the brain. Therefore, No working human brain = No Thought.=> No reason = No soul Is this correct?
    and what is with retards?


    Reply With Quote  
     

  2.  
     

  3. #2 Re: soul and evolution 
    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UTAH, USA
    Posts
    3,112
    Quote Originally Posted by otto
    I believe in the evolution. But I do not believe that animals, meaning all Multicellular organisms for example: dogs or Jellyfish, have a soul. Or do they?
    If they don't and we do, then when did our ancestors (who evolved from monkeys to humans) gain their soul? and how? I came as far as writting down the main difference between Humans and animals, which is, that mentally healthy humans have reason and animals do not (or not as much as we do). So if that is the only difference then our reason must be connected to our soul.
    Reason= the capacity for rational thought or inference or discrimination (http://dictionary.die.net/reason)
    Thought is the sum of the functions of the brain. Therefore, No working human brain = No Thought.=> No reason = No soul Is this correct?
    and what is with retards?
    Well the word "soul" really isn't a Biblical term and its meaning is a little ambiguous so I prefer the word "spirit" for that eternal non-physical aspect of all living things. Further more I have a developmental view of the spirit which has good grounding in 1 Corinthians 15 which is quite clear that the physical body is first and our spirit grows from that like a plant grows from a seed. For me it is clear that all life involves an interaction between physical and spiritual so the question is not whether a living thing has a spirit but whether it has an indepedent spirit apart from other living things.

    For example each cell in our body is a living organism in its own right but I do not believe that it has its own spirit independent from that of the whole person. Animal life is indeed primarily biological with practically no inheritance of acquired characteristics and thus theirs is more of a species spirit rather than individual although it is possible that pets may inherit something from their association with humans that gives them more a spirit apart from their species. But human life which is indeed primarily a mental life is very much a life based on an inheritance of information transmitted by human communication quite apart from biolology with an enormous capacity for the inheritance of acquired knowledge and information and this makes human beings far more of an individual form of life and thus with an independent spirtual existence.

    On the other hand, spiritual existence and spiritual life are two different things and however much our spiritual existence may be independent our spiritual life is not, for that is something that flows from the relationships which we have with others and most especially from a relationship with God. But yes we are basically on the same page. No brain means no human life which means no independent spiritual existence ----> AND SO a zygote is just another cell in a womans body and it is not until the fetus develops a brain that you have a human being.


    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

    I now have a blog too: http://astahost.blogspot.com/
    Reply With Quote  
     

  4. #3 Re: soul and evolution 
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Calgary, Alberta
    Posts
    599
    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain



    For example each cell in our body is a living organism in its own right
    I don't know what your biological background is, specifically, but each cell in our own body isn't a living organism in their own right. Infact, they are so hyperspecilized that without asserting a 'right' for other cells, they wouldn't live very well at all without any kind of lab techniques or artificial help. Also, just an FYI: For those of use that don't think about theistics very much, soul and spirit really are the same thing. I mean this in the same way that a crocodile and alligator are the same to a shit ton of people- but aren't the same to those that actually know. Is there specifically some rationale behind you splitting these terms or am I just insane again?

    Also, a question- why:


    Animal life is indeed primarily biological with practically no inheritance of acquired characteristics and thus theirs is more of a species spirit rather than individual although it is possible that pets may inherit something from their association with humans that gives them more a spirit apart from their species
    Some questions I do have about this:
    1. Animal life can have inheritance of acquired characters. There is some revival of lammarckian laws coming back; no a great deal, but enough to say "oh man that's kinda cool".

    2.species spirit? That sounds alot like the north american first nations elders I've had the priveledge of being on site with. You hear them talk about bison for hours on end if they know what they are doing. What is a species spirit and how does it differ? Also, are you implying that members of a nonhuman species aren't unique? I could find you a great deal of examples....ahhhh but then you excluded pets! So you're saying that something that occurs in biological entities but isn't biological can be transfered though biological contact and exposure from an exclusive group of biological agents to another, larger and normally excluded group except through these specific circumstances?

    That is more than a little sketchy by my standards, as you probably could have guessed.

    But human life which is indeed primarily a mental life is very much a life based on an inheritance of information transmitted by human communication quite apart from biolology with an enormous capacity for the inheritance of acquired knowledge and information and this makes human beings far more of an individual form of life and thus with an independent spirtual existence.

    So I'd argue that, by your standards, the giant red octopus along with many greater apes, monkies...etc etc etc (I can extend the metaphor down the ranks through small steps but I won't) live a 'primarily mental life'. Aside from the extreme example of an animal that learns vocariously and is insanely smart without parental influence (octopus), there are a great deal of K selected animals that might be argued to live a 'mental' life. The human brain is a means to an end, and that end is literally three things and their derivatives: Food, not dying and the next generation.

    Just a minute here- what is a primarily mental life? I'd say that the same biological functions occuring in us actually DO occur in many mammals, reptiles etc. Many of these animals, hell even the giant red octopus, are capable of complex problem solving and probably abstract thought. So I'm confused...is this really a marker for anything at all? Are you separating mental processes from biological? Metaphysics is something I'm lousy at.

    On the other hand, spiritual existence and spiritual life are two different things and however much our spiritual existence may be independent our spiritual life is not, for that is something that flows from the relationships which we have with others and most especially from a relationship with God.
    so our spirits intent or life is different or can be different from the entity that holds it? I'm going to take this opportunity and just ask where you'd suggest that a soul is held within the body, or if it just 'exists'. I'm really sorry if I'm coming off as aggressive on this one, I'm trying to literally ask questions about things I don't get.


    No brain means no human life which means no independent spiritual existence ----> AND SO a zygote is just another cell in a womans body and it is not until the fetus develops a brain that you have a human being.
    Okay dude, No. Just no. No liver means no human life, so does most of the organ systems. So singling out the brain is unfair, same as singling out one cell in our body as life on its own. The brain may 'control' things, but you'd be hard pressed to see a brain live without the cascade of organs and subsequent 'lackies' that funnel through. To name a few: Heart, lungs, tongue, stomach, intestines (both), marrow, blood....you can see how this just escalates til I name everything in the human body. Evolution selects against, quite strongly, things that don't have a use. Unless it's sexual, then it's thrown out the window. However, I doubt strongly that sexual selection would ever select for the erradication of a required body system, since sexual selection is generally an indication of fitness.

    I agree that a zygote isn't a human being. I disagree strongly with you when you say it it just another cell in the womans body. If you place that outside it's womb plated shell, you will find that it is attacked by the body in some way or another. It's different from the womans body, that's exactly why it's biologically protected. Just calling a spade a spade here.

    Looking forward to your reply!!!
    Reply With Quote  
     

  5. #4 Re: soul and evolution 
    (Q)
    (Q) is offline
    Forum Isotope (Q)'s Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    2,650
    Quote Originally Posted by otto
    Thought is the sum of the functions of the brain. Therefore, No working human brain = No Thought.=> No reason = No soul Is this correct?
    and what is with retards?
    Don't know where you get your reasoning from, but there has never been any evidence for the existence of a soul, as asserted by theists.

    The functions of the brain are all physical in nature.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  6. #5 Re: soul and evolution 
    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UTAH, USA
    Posts
    3,112
    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    For example each cell in our body is a living organism in its own right
    I don't know what your biological background is, specifically, but each cell in our own body isn't a living organism in their own right. Infact, they are so hyperspecilized that without asserting a 'right' for other cells, they wouldn't live very well at all without any kind of lab techniques or artificial help.
    Irrelevant! Every living thing in existence requires a special environment to live and has a multitude of interdependencies on other living things on this planet. The dependencies on other living things and requiring a special environment to live does NOT constitute a sufficient reason for saying that something is not a living organism. Please to do make silly arguments just for the sake of argument.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Also, just an FYI: For those of use that don't think about theistics very much, soul and spirit really are the same thing. ... Is there specifically some rationale behind you splitting these terms or am I just insane again?
    You can call anything you like whatever you like and I shall do the same.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Also, a question- why:
    I explained why already. What does the word "soul" refer to anyway? What does the word "spirit" refer to? Just because you do not see any value in these questions and therefore make no effort at all to investigate the meaning of these terms does not mean that anyone else has to remain faithful to your level of ignorance.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Animal life is indeed primarily biological with practically no inheritance of acquired characteristics and thus theirs is more of a species spirit rather than individual although it is possible that pets may inherit something from their association with humans that gives them more a spirit apart from their species
    Some questions I do have about this:
    1. Animal life can have inheritance of acquired characters. There is some revival of lammarckian laws coming back; no a great deal, but enough to say "oh man that's kinda cool".
    Yep, that's what I said. Exactly. You got it in one.

    Arguing something are you?


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    2.species spirit? That sounds alot like the north american first nations elders I've had the priveledge of being on site with. You hear them talk about bison for hours on end...
    Ah so you are paying attention. good!


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    What is a species spirit and how does it differ?
    What is a species and how does it differ from a human being?

    Perhaps you would make more progress here by asking the right questions.... like.... what is a spirit?

    A spirit is a non-physical form of energy created by the the choices of a living organism. I use the word "energy" simply because everything we know of is a form of energy and things differ because they are a different form of energy and not because they are not energy. That it is non-physical means that it is not a part of the geometric/mathematical structure of the physical universe which constitutes the laws of physics by which all physical things are what they are and for the most part do what they do (these laws are not deterministic). This by the way ALSO means that spiritual energy is not covertable to or from physical energy by any laws of physics.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Also, are you implying that members of a nonhuman species aren't unique?
    Nope.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    I could find you a great deal of examples....ahhhh but then you excluded pets! So you're saying that something that occurs in biological entities but isn't biological can be transfered though biological contact and exposure from an exclusive group of biological agents to another, larger and normally excluded group except through these specific circumstances?
    I am saying that human life is mental life based on an inheritance of information passed from generation to generation not via DNA but via human communication. Human beings are simply the most prepared to benefit from that inheritance and The human species has the right biological development and brain functions to give that inherited information the right environment to "bring it to life" much in the way that an unfertilized egg can take the information from a sperm and utilize that to give birth to new life.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    That is more than a little sketchy by my standards, as you probably could have guessed.
    Philosophy and theology is philosphy and theology. I find pretenses by certain people that their philosophy or theology is actually science to be very rididculous.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    So I'd argue that, by your standards, the giant red octopus along with many greater apes, monkies...etc etc etc (I can extend the metaphor down the ranks through small steps but I won't) live a 'primarily mental life'. Aside from the extreme example of an animal that learns vocariously and is insanely smart without parental influence (octopus), there are a great deal of K selected animals that might be argued to live a 'mental' life. The human brain is a means to an end, and that end is literally three things and their derivatives: Food, not dying and the next generation.
    Could be true in your case, so I shall certainly not make any attempt to argue that your brain does anything but help you to gain food and propagate your DNA. People can and will decide what sort of thing that they are and their belief will guide how they live their lives AND will most certainly have a great deal to do with how they use their brain and for what purpose, and that makes it pointless to argue with them about the purpose of their brain.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Just a minute here- what is a primarily mental life? I'd say that the same biological functions occuring in us actually DO occur in many mammals, reptiles etc. Many of these animals, hell even the giant red octopus, are capable of complex problem solving and probably abstract thought. So I'm confused...is this really a marker for anything at all? Are you separating mental processes from biological? Metaphysics is something I'm lousy at.
    Good questions and I think you should keep thinking about them.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    On the other hand, spiritual existence and spiritual life are two different things and however much our spiritual existence may be independent our spiritual life is not, for that is something that flows from the relationships which we have with others and most especially from a relationship with God.
    so our spirits intent or life is different or can be different from the entity that holds it?
    ??? Surely you understand the difference between a living human being and a corpse, right? So you can see the difference between the existence of a human body and the life of the human body, right? Take a human being as he is and displace him to the moon and the body will continue to exist (in a pretty good state of preservation too), but without air (which comes from plants) let alone food, it will quickly cease to be alive. Thus, the existence of the human body is not the same as the life of the human body, right?


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    I'm going to take this opportunity and just ask where you'd suggest that a soul is held within the body, or if it just 'exists'. I'm really sorry if I'm coming off as aggressive on this one, I'm trying to literally ask questions about things I don't get.
    As I said before, I don't really know what a "soul" is. The historical usage, lack of Biblical reference and etymological origins of that term make it difficult to be clear what it refers to. The spirit is not in the body. Not being a physical entity it is not a part of the quantitative mathematical relationships of time and space which is how all physical things fit into and are a part of the physical universe. Again perhaps the right question is, in what way does in interact with the the human being and the points of contact are the free will choices we make -- i.e. actions and thoughts made by choice rather than simply by habit.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    No brain means no human life which means no independent spiritual existence ----> AND SO a zygote is just another cell in a womans body and it is not until the fetus develops a brain that you have a human being.
    Okay dude, No. Just no. No liver means no human life, so does most of the organ systems. So singling out the brain is unfair, same as singling out one cell in our body as life on its own. The brain may 'control' things, but you'd be hard pressed to see a brain live without the cascade of organs and subsequent 'lackies' that funnel through. ....
    Yes I can see how that would fit into your ideology. You say your brain is just a device to help you propagate your DNA. But, I am not what you are and my brain does the tasks which I give it and so I say that my brain serves a different purpose. This is the problem with science and its inherent limitation when we turn the subject of study to ourselves. We are not objective observers of ourselves. What we believe about ourselves DOES have an impact on what we are.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    I agree that a zygote isn't a human being. I disagree strongly with you when you say it it just another cell in the womans body. If you place that outside it's womb plated shell, you will find that it is attacked by the body in some way or another. It's different from the womans body, that's exactly why it's biologically protected. Just calling a spade a spade here.
    We were talking about spirits/souls, so does this information you are proudly spouting have any relevance to that topic? This forum does have a biology subsection where talk of spirits and souls is not welcome but here in the religion subsection we are free to talk about such things.
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

    I now have a blog too: http://astahost.blogspot.com/
    Reply With Quote  
     

  7. #6  
    Forum Junior
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Somewhere near Beetlegeuse
    Posts
    205
    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    For example each cell in our body is a living organism in its own right
    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    ...but each cell in our own body isn't a living organism in their own right.
    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Irrelevant! Every living thing in existence requires a special environment to live and has a multitude of interdependencies on other living things on this planet. The dependencies on other living things and requiring a special environment to live does NOT constitute a sufficient reason for saying that something is not a living organism.
    Your point would appear to be that since any collection of cells is dependent on something else for its continued existence it is not considered (by you) to be a living organism "in its own right".

    Well okay, but the term "living organism" must, if it is to have any meaning, have a definition. Let's take a stab at: A cell or collection of cells capable of independent life, growth, repair and reproduction.

    This helps us distinguish a human from a rock becase the rock is not capable of repair or reproduction but certain types of rocks do "grow" over time. This also enables us to distinguish between a human and a virus because a virus is alive but is not capable of living "independently" because it must invade a host to reproduce. Real biologists are not in agreement as to whether viruses are living organisms or not, but you seem to be in no doubt; I find that quite telling.

    This definition also enables us to say that for example, a red blood cell is not a "living organism" because it is not capable of doing anything "independently".

    Would you like to have a go at defining "living organism" in a way that both makes sense and permits you to call a red blood cell a living organism?

    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Please to do make silly arguments just for the sake of argument.
    Please construct a grammatical sentence from the following: black, kettle, pot, the, calling.
    Everything the laws of the universe do not prohibit must finally happen.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  8. #7  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UTAH, USA
    Posts
    3,112
    Quote Originally Posted by numbers
    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    For example each cell in our body is a living organism in its own right
    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    ...but each cell in our own body isn't a living organism in their own right.
    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Irrelevant! Every living thing in existence requires a special environment to live and has a multitude of interdependencies on other living things on this planet. The dependencies on other living things and requiring a special environment to live does NOT constitute a sufficient reason for saying that something is not a living organism.
    Your point would appear to be that since any collection of cells is dependent on something else for its continued existence it is not considered (by you) to be a living organism "in its own right".
    It is not my point. My point is just the opposite. All living things depend on their environment. The single human cell is no different. Such dependencies have NOTHING to do with whether something is a living organism.


    Quote Originally Posted by numbers
    Well okay, but the term "living organism" must, if it is to have any meaning, have a definition. Let's take a stab at: A cell or collection of cells capable of independent life, growth, repair and reproduction.
    WRONG!!!! Mules are living organisms. Sterile human beings are living organisms. You failed utterly! You can learn from Wikipedia on this one.


    Quote Originally Posted by numbers
    Would you like to have a go at defining "living organism" in a way that both makes sense and permits you to call a red blood cell a living organism?
    For a vast improvement on your attempt, here is my definition. A living organism is a dynamic structure that dynamically maintains its structure by responding to environmental influences and changes.


    Quote Originally Posted by numbers
    This definition also enables us to say that for example, a red blood cell is not a "living organism" because it is not capable of doing anything "independently".
    Perhaps I should adopt a definition of living organism that would exclude you too, but what would it prove? A red blood cell IS a living organism. One of the ways you can tell that this is the case is the fact that you can tell the difference between a red blood cell that is alive and one that is dead. Certainly by my definition the red blood cell is a living organism and if you appropriately learn from this exchange I think it could fit you too.


    Quote Originally Posted by numbers
    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Please to do make silly arguments just for the sake of argument.
    Please construct a grammatical sentence from the following: black, kettle, pot, the, calling.
    Here is a similar problem for you that I think you can manage: yours, up
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

    I now have a blog too: http://astahost.blogspot.com/
    Reply With Quote  
     

  9. #8  
    Forum Masters Degree samcdkey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    640
    You can grow primary cells in culture and they are very much "alive" or "dead"
    Homeland Security Advisory System: RED
    Reply With Quote  
     

  10. #9  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Calgary, Alberta
    Posts
    599
    Cultures don't occur in nature, at least not of human cells or other such highly specialized and interdependant cells. Just pointing out the difference there sam.

    I'm still unclear on a few things here mitchell:

    what is the true difference between a species soul and a singular soul? Would people have both or something? I really dislike when humanity is seperated out as divine or special.


    Your example of a red blood cell is kinda funny, since it's so hyperspecialized that in people it's enucleate! Would you say that that is a truely independant living being? I really didn't care for you relating interdepent cells to what was essentially a food chain. Yes everything is connected in the food chain, but there is a difference that should be noted: In most cases, predators and prey have more than one food source or in other words, they eat more than one plant or animal. Meanwhile, specific cells within a body generally have one task. To carry your RBC example forward, RBC really have one task and that is carrying oxygen throughout the body. It is different, but I'm guessing it can be written off quickly by saying "you believe it is the same so it must be".

    If a soul is real, surely, it must have a purpose. What is the purpose of a soul? Calling it energy, I think, is certainly flawed. Energy can be measured, a soul cannot.


    mormoopid wrote:

    Also, just an FYI: For those of use that don't think about theistics very much, soul and spirit really are the same thing. ... Is there specifically some rationale behind you splitting these terms or am I just insane again?


    You can call anything you like whatever you like and I shall do the same.
    Okay so in what way does that actually answer my question or help me figure out what you see as the difference?




    mormoopid wrote:

    Just a minute here- what is a primarily mental life? I'd say that the same biological functions occuring in us actually DO occur in many mammals, reptiles etc. Many of these animals, hell even the giant red octopus, are capable of complex problem solving and probably abstract thought. So I'm confused...is this really a marker for anything at all? Are you separating mental processes from biological? Metaphysics is something I'm lousy at.


    Good questions and I think you should keep thinking about them.
    Maybe you can think about them too, since I asked you?

    As I said before, I don't really know what a "soul" is
    So you don't know what a soul is but you believe in it? Is that a logical thing to be doing or do you have some alternative justification to help me understand your thought process.

    and fianlly:
    What we believe about ourselves DOES have an impact on what we are.
    That's an awefully warm and fuzzy sentiment, but I think they give medication to people for thinking they are napoleon when they aren't. What impact are you implicating here specifically? I'm pretty sure you don't literally 'become' whatever you want through belief, that would be ludicrous, but how does this work in your estimation?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  11. #10  
    Forum Masters Degree samcdkey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    640
    Cultures don't occur in nature, at least not of human cells or other such highly specialized and interdependant cells. Just pointing out the difference there sam.
    Hmm you're right, cells eating, growing, reproducing and dying in a controlled environment is an unnatural system. Its not like we're attempting to recreate the natural milieu or anything.
    Homeland Security Advisory System: RED
    Reply With Quote  
     

  12. #11  
    Forum Junior
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Somewhere near Beetlegeuse
    Posts
    205
    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    WRONG!!!! Mules are living organisms. Sterile human beings are living organisms.
    You are right Mitchell, Mules are living organisms and they can't reproduce, so maybe we should take "reproduction" out of my proposed definition of a living organism. You see, I only ever said it was a "stab" at a definition so I'm quite happy to admit it might not have met all the criteria first time round because, unlike you, I don't claim to know all the answers to all the questions all the time.

    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    You failed utterly!
    Well, one seventh of my "stab" at a definition was not required. I'm not sure that counts as an "utter failure" but thanks for the encouragement, teacher.

    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    You can learn from Wikipedia on this one.
    Funny you should mention that, because the wikipedia definition of "Organism" starts with the following paragraph:

    In biology, an organism is a living thing (such as animal, plant, fungus, or micro-organism). In at least some form, all organisms are capable of response to stimuli, reproduction, growth and development, and maintenance of homeostasis as a stable whole.

    So the Wikipedia God you appealed to says that organisms "are" capable of reproduction. What is it I'm supposed to be learning here, teacher?

    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    A living organism is a dynamic structure that dynamically maintains its structure by responding to environmental influences and changes.
    A dynamic structure, eh? I looked up a few different definitions of "dynamic", including the one on Wikipedia as you suggest, but it isn't clear which one you might mean:

    • in a forceful dynamic manner; "this pianist plays dynamically"
    • of or relating to dynamics
    • moral force: an efficient incentive
    • expressing action rather than a state of being
    • a mathematical formalization for any fixed "rule"
    • the varying loudness of a song
    • an operation that occurs at the time it is needed
    • a Web page that gives users an interactive experience
    • use of diagrams to describe collaborations and behaviour
    • elastic fabric made for the outdoor sports market
    • the Force of action and movement and change
    • variable or constantly changing nature
    So your meaning when you say a living organism is a "dynamic structure" is not immediately clear. Could you possibly clarify that a little? Perhaps it would help if you were to explain the ways in which a blade of grass is a dynamic structure that dynamically maintains its structure?

    I'm also a little fuzzy on that "dynamically maintains its structure" part. You see, in my experience, when living things like plants get damaged they tend to stay damaged and quickly die off so this idea of them "dynamically" maintaining their structure is not at all obvious. Care to clear that up a little, teacher?

    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Certainly by my definition the red blood cell is a living organism...
    Yes, we get the point Mr. Dogmatic. My point was, however, is your particular definition applicable to anyone else or is it just the McKain family definition by dictat from the Master?

    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Here is a similar problem for you that I think you can manage: yours, up
    Sorry, I'm not getting the biblical reference here, is that a particularly christian greeting you're expressing?
    Everything the laws of the universe do not prohibit must finally happen.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  13. #12  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UTAH, USA
    Posts
    3,112
    For the enlightenment of those unfamiliar with this term: A dynamic structure is a structure that is not composed of fixed material but forms in a flow of materials. The simplest example is an eddy or a persistent vortex in a stream and a more complex example would be a living organism.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Okay so in what way does that actually answer my question or help me figure out what you see as the difference?
    I thought I made it clear that I cannot help you with regards to the term "soul" and thus you can take your questions about that elsewhere. If you wish to avoid confusion and ask me regarding what I believe then use the term "spirit" and we will have a lot less trouble communicating.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    As I said before, I don't really know what a "soul" is
    So you don't know what a soul is but you believe in it? Is that a logical thing to be doing or do you have some alternative justification to help me understand your thought process.
    Oh where did I say that. I made it pretty clear that IF you use the word "soul" for the same thing that I use the word "spirit" for then I believe in it -- otherwise since I have no idea what it means then it would be meaningless to comment on whether I believed in it or not.

    You are the one that keeps insisting on using this word after I made this clear. This causes me to doubt that you really have any interest in what I believe and suggests that you have more interest in projecting some other beliefs on me so you can vent your hostility and ridicule for them.


    Therefore to aid you in clearing up your continuingly confusing YOU using this word with ME using this word I will now EDIT your comments to replace the word "soul" with the word spirit in order to make them something I can comment on.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    what is the true difference between a species spirit and a singular spirit? Would people have both or something? I really dislike when humanity is seperated out as divine or special.
    LOL You may believe anything you want. I certainly wouldn't want to offend your likes and dislikes with anything like the simple facts of the differences between human beings and animals. LOL

    But when you get over how you would prefer reality to be, then you might seek an understanding of how human beings have both similarities and differences from other forms of life on this planet and you may want to see clearly what those similarities and differences are. But do I have to worry about tripping over your ideological dogmas?

    My view is a unique one, that shows that human beings are at the same time very much more the same sort of thing as every other living thing on the planet and at the same time radically and fundamentally different. Our human languages are structured to give a special name to activities when human beings do them and this causes the naive to think that other forms of life do not do these thing or only do them when they look like what we do. I try to see beyond this linguistic bias.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Your example of a red blood cell is kinda funny, since it's so hyperspecialized that in people it's enucleate!
    It is NOT my example, that was introduced by someone else here, and yet I STILL insist that it is a living organism, by the definition I have given. And yes I know what a red blood cell is, thank you.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Would you say that that is a truely independant living being?
    Back on this independence thing again? How independent is independent enough? Every living thing is dependent on a great number of things for all kinds of different things. SO WHAT?


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    RBC really have one task and that is carrying oxygen throughout the body.
    ...
    "you believe it is the same so it must be".
    And you don't believe it so I guess it must not be. The erythrocyte (red blood cell) is not a product of design, and that is why despite the fact that it has a fairly limited functionality it is nevertheless a living organism rather than a tool. In fact, this basic principle caused me to immediately doubt your foolish claim about "one task" and so I did the one second of research required to expose it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Wikipedia
    When erythrocytes undergo shear stress in constricted vessels, they release ATP which causes the vessel walls to relax and dilate.

    When their hemoglobin molecules are deoxygenated, erythrocytes release S-nitrosothiols which also acts to dilate vessels, thus directing more blood to areas of the body depleted of oxygen.

    Erythrocytes also play a part in the body's immune response: when lysed by pathogens such as bacteria, their hemoglobin releases free radicals that break down the pathogen's cell wall and membrane, killing it.
    Since this is from Wikipedia I doubt this is comprehensive, but even a comprehensive list is only going to be those functions that we know about.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    If a spirit is real, surely, it must have a purpose.
    Says who? What is the purpose of the moons of Uranus, or are they not real?

    Tools are created for a purpose. Therefore if someone creates a tool I would say that it must have a purpose. If the creator of something denies that what he creates has a purpose then I would deny that it is in fact a tool, and suggest that instead it may be a work of art instead.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    What is the purpose of a spirit?
    Thus this is an incorrect question. Consider the moons of Jupiter and think about what questions we can ask about them? What are they like? What are their properties? What impact do they have on the other things we know to exist?


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Calling it energy, I think, is certainly flawed.
    I quite agree. The only thing that should be called energy is energy. But everything existing thing that we know of for certain is a form of energy and therefore I find it quite natural to suppose that everything that actually exists is likewise a form of energy.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Energy can be measured, a spirit cannot.
    Physical energy can be measured. I do not see this measurablity as being essential to it being energy but rather a consequence of its form including being a part of these mathematical relationships of (11 dimensional) time and space. But that is what I think defines something as physical and not what defines energy. To be sure my usage of the term "energy" goes beyond its usage in physics. But so what? Lots of terms in physics have meanings outside of physics that are not bound by the definitions in physics.

    Now whether there is a quantitative aspect to the energy of spiritual things, I do not know for sure (I suspect that there is not), but even if there is, it would not be measurable anyway because all methods of measurement require things to be a part of the mathematical relationships of time and space for these measurements to be performed.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    I'd say that the same biological functions occuring in us actually DO occur in many mammals, reptiles etc. Many of these animals, hell even the giant red octopus, are capable of complex problem solving and probably abstract thought.
    A much better example would be the Benobos, who have demonstrated that their brain has a majority of the same brain (biological) functions as we do.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Many of these animals, hell even the giant red octopus, are capable of complex problem solving and probably abstract thought. So I'm confused...is this really a marker for anything at all?
    Of course it is. IF they do have abstract thought THEN perhaps they are somewhat comparable to human life. However I find this doubtful in the extreme, for just because thought is abstract does not mean that it does not effect the way an organism lives. Unlike the case of human beings, I see no evidence of abstract thought on the part of animal life like an octopus because there is no impact of this on the way they live their lives. By the way, complex problem solving is not the same thing as abstract thought.

    Just because we can imagine animals thinking and talking like human beings and make funny movies where they do so for the entertainment of children, does not mean that they really have any kind of mental life. Expression is an indispensible part of the process of mental life and so called "abstract thought" which is incapable of having any impact on the actual life of an organism, would have no reason to exist, and I claim therefore that it would actually be incapable of existing because that kind of impact is indispensible in the process by which such mental activity is learned and by which it develops.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Just a minute here- what is a primarily mental life?

    Are you separating mental processes from biological? Metaphysics is something I'm lousy at.
    That is correct. This really isn't that complicated. Just a little outside your habitual way of thinking.

    The human mind is a living organism because it is a dynamic structure in the information processing of the human brain that maintains its structure by responding to environmental influences and changes. Its "organs" are things like concepts and beliefs. It is a physical living organism because its substance and events are entirely composed of forms of energy that are governed by the laws of physics. Nevertheless it is NOT a biological organism because it is based on an inheritance of information quite apart from DNA, passed via the methods of human communication. It learning process and "evolutionary" development is not a matter of DNA modification but a matter of modifying these beliefs and concepts of which our mind is composed and by which we perceive the world.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    That's an awefully warm and fuzzy sentiment,
    I am not interested in this thing you have for warm and fuzzy...things... whatever they are...


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    I think they give medication to people for thinking they are napoleon when they aren't.
    A good example of how what people think about themselves has an effect on what they are.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    What we believe about ourselves DOES have an impact on what we are.
    What impact are you implicating here specifically? I'm pretty sure you don't literally 'become' whatever you want through belief, that would be ludicrous, but how does this work in your estimation?
    No that is not what I said. If you insist on the most ridiculous interpretation that you can think of, then it is a wonder that you can communicate with anyone at all. This is probably another reason why you shy away from academia, for this habit would also make you incapable of learning anything from anyone.

    Here is a thread where I discussed this issue of what the impacts of belief are: "how does belief effect reality"
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

    I now have a blog too: http://astahost.blogspot.com/
    Reply With Quote  
     

  14. #13  
    Forum Junior
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Somewhere near Beetlegeuse
    Posts
    205
    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    A dynamic structure is a structure that is not composed of fixed material but forms in a flow of materials.
    Okay, that's a nice start. A flow of materials, what you mean like volcanic magma flow forms volcanic rocks. So those rocks are living organisms, is that what you mean?

    Or maybe you could try equating this to a couple of examples of actual living organisms. I previously suggested a blade of grass and I think that still stands. How is a blade of grass formed in a "flow of materials" and then how does it "dynamically maintain its structure", which is something else you said a living organism would do?

    I do appreciate that you are making a pretty manful effort to explain all this to me, and I do appreciate the time and trouble you have gone to. But I'm still having trouble envisaging a red blood cell as being formed in a vortex. You do remember that you claimed a red blood cell was a living organism, don't you. That means that according to your definition it is both "formed in a dynamic flow of materials" and also maintains its structure in a similar dynamic flow of materials. I really am looking forward to your explanation of how this all works.

    Incidentally, since I already amended my definition you can safely assume that it is perfectly acceptable for you to do the same. Just wondering 8)
    Everything the laws of the universe do not prohibit must finally happen.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  15. #14  
    Forum Masters Degree samcdkey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    640
    According to me, a "soul" is what makes you a separate individual from your clone.

    Re: red blood cells, they have a nuclei, they just eject it because they don't need it. Thats a change due to the environment. If you think they are not living, try nuking all your RBCs to see the difference.

    How is a blade of grass formed in a "flow of materials" and then how does it "dynamically maintain its structure", which is something else you said a living organism would do?
    Look up plant cell wall. Are you seriously claiming a plant is not a living organism?

    Homeland Security Advisory System: RED
    Reply With Quote  
     

  16. #15  
    (Q)
    (Q) is offline
    Forum Isotope (Q)'s Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    2,650
    Quote Originally Posted by samcdkey
    According to me, a "soul" is what makes you a separate individual from your clone.
    The theist is always trying to imagine what a "soul" is supposed to be. Of course, their imaginations run wild with this one as they flounder around spouting all sorts of nonsense in an attempt to sound smart and as if they could construct a reasonable explanation from the magical and mystical realms of their delusions.

    Clones indeed. Ha!
    Reply With Quote  
     

  17. #16  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Calgary, Alberta
    Posts
    599
    Just to clarify, Mitchell, I used the red octopus for two reasons as an example. It is pretty far removed from humanity, to demonstrate that you don't have to be next to humanity to be insanely smart and because they DO have amazing abstract thought processes.

    For example, Octopi have been observed to crawl out of their holding tanks, move across a room, grab a jar of food and OPEN it from observation and creative processes alone. The funny thing is, all behaviours in them aren't learned from another octopus- they live a solitary life of only 2 years. So they have to figure things out for themselves, even the ones that mimic different animals etc. They are really cool animals!


    Talking about Uranus and Jupiters moons, I'd tell you they do have a purpose. To impact the gravitational fields of those planets, at the very least, and probably impact the rotational forces (to a slowing effect). Purpose is perhaps a bad word, since that implies design like a tool. However, an effect is observable in everything. I have yet to see any tangible evidence of an effect from a soul. So, why would there be a need for one?

    Also, once again you're really coming off obnoxious and I don't think that's your intent. I tried my best to tone down myself and just ask questions to learn some more, perhaps you could have more patience in the interest of keeping discussions open rahter than shutting them down and condescending.



    Sam:
    I never said cells and whatnot weren't living organisms, I just contested that they aren't living in their own right. By that I mean that they don't stand much of a chance without their support network, so they aren't really dependant.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  18. #17  
    Forum Masters Degree samcdkey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    640
    I never said cells and whatnot weren't living organisms, I just contested that they aren't living in their own right. By that I mean that they don't stand much of a chance without their support network, so they aren't really dependant.
    Like a man on the moon?
    Homeland Security Advisory System: RED
    Reply With Quote  
     

  19. #18  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Calgary, Alberta
    Posts
    599
    not a natural situation so that isn't a fair comparison. It's exactly the same in many respects to the individual cell in a petri dish.

    PS when I said dependant in the above post I meant independant but didn't catch it in the proof read.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  20. #19  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UTAH, USA
    Posts
    3,112
    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Just to clarify, Mitchell, I used the red octopus for two reasons as an example. It is pretty far removed from humanity, to demonstrate that you don't have to be next to humanity to be insanely smart and because they DO have amazing abstract thought processes.

    For example, Octopi have been observed to crawl out of their holding tanks, move across a room, grab a jar of food and OPEN it from observation and creative processes alone. The funny thing is, all behaviours in them aren't learned from another octopus- they live a solitary life of only 2 years. So they have to figure things out for themselves, even the ones that mimic different animals etc. They are really cool animals!
    Thanks for the info, they do sound fascinating. I have to thank others on this forum for introducing me to the Benobos which are also fascinating. But what you describe is strill only what I would call problem solving and NOT abstract thought. Recent biological studies have found that this instinct for mimicry is also hardwired in the human brain as well, adding to the ongoing revisions we have to make to our ideas of what is the separation between brain function and the mind. But just because this separation is difficult and requires revision does not mean that it isn't there, and I have already explained the simple and irrefutable difference in regards to the inheritance of information.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Talking about Uranus and Jupiters moons, I'd tell you they do have a purpose. To impact the gravitational fields of those planets, at the very least, and probably impact the rotational forces (to a slowing effect). Purpose is perhaps a bad word, since that implies design like a tool. However, an effect is observable in everything. I have yet to see any tangible evidence of an effect from a spirit. So, why would there be a need for one?
    Yes you are talking about effect and not purpose. And here we approach a fundamental difference in the premises that we accept. For I deny the premise that just because an effect is not objectively observable, it therefore is not real. Again the limitations of science are very real. Its objective methodology is enormously effective in getting past how our beliefs effect our perceptions in order to discover new things about the world around us. BUT when it comes to ourselves and our own being this objective methodology is obviously and logically inapplicable, and we are reduced to at best using the rather blunt tool of statistics for a few objective observations.

    So yes I very much think that the spirit has an effect but obviously not an objectively observable one and I believe that this goes precisely to the difference between that which is physical and that which is spiritual. Thus I believe that this situation where some will believe in the existence of the spiritual and some will choose not to is fundamental and will NEVER change. This is precisely why I am a secularist. Those who believe in spiritual things CANNOT prove that what they believe in is real in any objective manner and thus they have no right to push those beliefs on others. BUT LIKEWISE those who believe that spiritual things are not real CANNOT prove this is the case and so they ALSO have no right to push this belief on others EITHER.

    As for the question of how the spirit interacts with things, I have already answered this and I see no need to repeat myself.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Also, once again you're really coming off obnoxious and I don't think that's your intent. I tried my best to tone down myself and just ask questions to learn some more, perhaps you could have more patience in the interest of keeping discussions open rahter than shutting them down and condescending.
    I appreciate the effort and you WILL see whatever effort you make immediately reflected in my responses because I will simply reflect back whatever is thrown at me. If it stings more because I am clever at doing so well that's the breaks, BUT I WILL not and CANNOT be a punching back for everyones feelings of resentment and despite. I can only continue here by immediately throwing whatever I get back at people. I WILL meet humility and kindness with the same and I WILL meet arrogance and hostility with exactly the same. THAT is how I maintain an even keel and keep on going. Know that if you really have my contempt, then I will simply ignore you. I keep responding only because what you are saying is still holding my interest. As for being condescending that may very well be such an ingrained character trait that it may take a few lifetimes for me to improve that aspect of my character. My father was like that and I hated it, but that doesn't always make changing it in yourself any easier.
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

    I now have a blog too: http://astahost.blogspot.com/
    Reply With Quote  
     

  21. #20  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Calgary, Alberta
    Posts
    599
    You're actually just about as dogmatic in your views as I am, I think.

    I think that's why I keep coming back to talk with you about things, since we're actually a little bit alike.


    Here's an example of octopi with abstract thought turning into behaviour:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=To0IDOpNXHI

    Near as can be seen, it's a type of camoflauge. It's disguising itself as a coconut, in all probability, because that is the only thing even slightly resembling that in the area. Obviously the octopus has to keep moving away from a predator and can't just bob around on the surface, so it takes the shape of a coconut and walks away on the ground. Thinking about it, the bipedal motion here as well as the combination and modification of this observation into a behaviour is a pretty solid example of abstract thought- without such abstract thought, creative problem solving of this level doesn't go over too well.

    So, to expand on this, would these animals and other of such capacities, have a soul? Would they have something resembling or almost a sould, but not quite?


    Those who believe in spiritual things CANNOT prove that what they believe in is real in any objective manner and thus they have no right to push those beliefs on others. BUT LIKEWISE those who believe that spiritual things are not real CANNOT prove this is the case and so they ALSO have no right to push this belief on others EITHER.
    It can't be proven wrong or right, so you contend that it's real without a doubt or just a probability? I personally would contend, at the current state of evidence we have, that it's unlikely. I do my best to keep my mind open, often I'll say something doesn't exist and sound rather definitive just to basically say that there is no evidence for something,so there is therefore no call to actually think it's real yet since it's not my field of research anyways.

    Plus, faith is for the blind. A training in science equips us with a vision, no matter how tunnelled it may or may not be.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  22. #21  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UTAH, USA
    Posts
    3,112
    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Here's an example of octopi with abstract thought turning into behaviour:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=To0IDOpNXHI

    Near as can be seen, it's a type of camoflauge. It's disguising itself as a coconut, in all probability, because that is the only thing even slightly resembling that in the area. Obviously the octopus has to keep moving away from a predator and can't just bob around on the surface, so it takes the shape of a coconut and walks away on the ground. Thinking about it, the bipedal motion here as well as the combination and modification of this observation into a behaviour is a pretty solid example of abstract thought- without such abstract thought, creative problem solving of this level doesn't go over too well.
    I would suggest reading Dawkin's "Climbing Mount Improbable", where he shows that things that LOOK LIKE they are designed ARE NOT actually designed. I would say that your thinking here is of a similar nature. Many religious cannot imagine things in nature coming into existence without being designed by some super intellegent and powerful being. You likewise cannot imagine this octopus doing what he does without abstract thought, perhaps because you would use abstract thought to do the same thing. But neither of these examples of wooly thinking come any where near making what they imagine to be the case. There is absolutely NOTHING abstract here. Coconuts are not abstract. Mimicry and camaflage are not abstract.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    So, to expand on this, would these animals and other of such capacities, have a spirit? Would they have something resembling or almost a soul, but not quite?
    Yes all living things have a spirit. But I do think that they have a spirit that is far less individual than that of human beings.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Those who believe in spiritual things CANNOT prove that what they believe in is real in any objective manner and thus they have no right to push those beliefs on others. BUT LIKEWISE those who believe that spiritual things are not real CANNOT prove this is the case and so they ALSO have no right to push this belief on others EITHER.
    It can't be proven wrong or right, so you contend that it's real without a doubt or just a probability?
    It is my judgement that there is a spiritual aspect to reality but my reasons for that judgement is not and cannot untimately be laid at the door of any objective observations, for it is the nature of the physical and spiritual that a strict and careful observance of the standards of objective observation must result in them being attributable to physical causes. All who believe in a spritual aspect to reality certainly have real and tangible experiences as reasons for why they believe so but they are not and never will be scientific (or purely objective) reasons.

    Thus you are free to decide that such reasons are without merit, but the truth is that doing so seems quite ridiculous to me - not irrational (by strict logical standards) - but not really what I would consider sensible. My mind is flexible enough to imagine it and I see how such thinking inevitably leads to the post-modern thought that must inevitably claim that there is no such thing as meaning. But such a conclusion is very far from what I would consider sensible, for I would NEVER embrace a view of life that is without meaning.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    I personally would contend, at the current state of evidence we have, that it's unlikely. I do my best to keep my mind open, often I'll say something doesn't exist and sound rather definitive just to basically say that there is no evidence for something,so there is therefore no call to actually think it's real yet since it's not my field of research anyways.
    I quite agree with this, and not only do I have no absolutely expectation that this will change but I would be HIGHLY suspicious of any claims of any evidence to the contrary, for in my view that would be a contradiction in terms.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    Plus, faith is for the blind. A training in science equips us with a vision, no matter how tunnelled it may or may not be.
    Incorrect. What is really blind is willfullness -- those who decide what they would like reality to be and thus ignore any facts to the contrary. Certainty is a delusion and those who pretend to certainty are participating in blind willfullness. Faith is the foundation of all knowledge outside of self-contained formal systems like mathematics (which is the only place where there is proof) and that must therefore include knowledge about the world and what is real.


    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    A training in science equips us with a vision, no matter how tunnelled it may or may not be.
    Yes indeed it does, AND it is founded on FAITH. BUT it is a faith which I embrace whole-heartedly. It is founded on the faith in a particular methodology for ferreting out the truth of a great many things about the world we live in. It is founded on the faith that the evidence does not lie, and thus it denounces ideas of the blindly religious that suppose that the evidence that contradicts their beliefs was placed there by malign forces to deceive us.

    But I do not take the extra step of faith that you seem to, in order to claim that this methodology of science is the means to discover all truth. Not only is it quite obvious to me that this faith is completely unwarranted but I see an insistence on this faith as an example of blindness and willfullness. But again what is even more blind and willfull is this pretension that this faith is somehow not faith at all. This is the sort of pretention that I see in the most obstinantly ignorant fundamentalist who insist that what he "knows" is reality itself.

    This is behind an argument I had with numbers in a different thread, where he insisted on such a position until he was forced to admit that it collapses under the weight of its own self contradictions.
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

    I now have a blog too: http://astahost.blogspot.com/
    Reply With Quote  
     

  23. #22  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Beautiful Pacific Northwest, USA
    Posts
    2,116
    Interesting conversation here in that I have always been facinated by the entire (but small) cephalopod group of animals which would also include squid, nautilus and cuttlefish.

    Cephalopods, indeed, seem to harbor a vast amount of "knowledge" despite a very short lifespan in comparison to other seemingly intelligent animals. I forget what this apparent transfer of knowledge from parent to child is called.

    But I agree that adopting the disguise of a coconut does not show abstract thought. The ability to take on various colors and shapes appears to be something the octopus is born with. Now, if the octopus, upon observing the coconut suddenly disguised itself as a palm tree, that would be an indication of abstract thought.

    Aping the actions in a monkey-see, monkey-do fashion is not abstract thought, but merely observation and reaction. If the octopus were to adopt as a disguise something it had never seen, that would be an abstraction. I am not prepared to judge whether cephalopods are capable of abstract thinking processes which, in a way, indicates an ability to extrapolate from that which is known to that which has previously been unknown through a thinking process rather than trial and error.

    Many years ago, one of the early Chimpanzee experiments with sign language involved a young chimp named Washoe. Washoe (who is still alive and lives on a sanctuary here in the Pacific Northwest) merely mimicked the signs she had been taught until one day she put her doll into a cup and signed "Washoe baby in cup," something she had not been taught. This was an example of abstract thought vis a vis a phrase she had been taught and was copying to gain a specific response.

    If you place food on the other side of a fence, a chicken will run back and forth along the fence until it gets to an end and can get around it. A dog will merely go to the end of the fence and around. The dog, apparently, is able to "think" out the abstract problem while the chicken is not.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
    Reply With Quote  
     

  24. #23  
    Forum Masters Degree samcdkey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    640
    Quote Originally Posted by mormoopid
    not a natural situation so that isn't a fair comparison. It's exactly the same in many respects to the individual cell in a petri dish.

    PS when I said dependant in the above post I meant independant but didn't catch it in the proof read.
    So going on the moon is a supernatural or unnatural act? Like aquatic creatures evolving out of the water onto land?

    Or are genes more "natural" than inventions? IMO, anything that is possible in nature is natural. Even the ability of man to adapt his environment to himself, rather than himself to his environment.
    Homeland Security Advisory System: RED
    Reply With Quote  
     

  25. #24  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Calgary, Alberta
    Posts
    599
    Sam: unnatural act. If I recall, whales and many sea creatures bite the bullet if they come out of water. We are surviving conditions we normally wouldn't, so it's beyond our physical nature to do so. Therefore, it's an unnatural act- not supernatural, since there is no magic or anything like that involved.



    Okay the chromatophores in octopi are obviously physiological, but are you telling me that the octopus in the example acting like a coconut but slightly different because it can't physically be the exact same is solely because they are 'made to be creative'? Mimicry is one thing, but mimicry with modification is totally different. I'd agree with you fully if the octopus would just curl in a ball and roll around a bit, but it added the bipedal motion there. I'm pretty convinced this demonstrates some creative problem solving, of which abstract thought is a part.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  26. #25  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Beautiful Pacific Northwest, USA
    Posts
    2,116
    I still am not sure this is an abstract adaptation.

    I suspect this is a normal escape mode for octopi. The fact that he has used a coconut shell to disguise himself and stealthily slunk away is perhaps only an adaptation in disguise. The character of the disguise would have nothing to do with his escape technique. Although I have no examples, I do not think it would be out of place for another octopus in a different environment to don some other available container as a protective disguise and slither off. What we do not know is if this technique is unique to this particular octopus or if this technique is also employed by other octopi using a different disguise.

    It is dangerous to attempt to draw a definitive determination from one example -- like saying I know all yaks walk in single file because the only one I ever saw did.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
    Reply With Quote  
     

  27. #26  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UTAH, USA
    Posts
    3,112
    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    Many years ago, one of the early Chimpanzee experiments with sign language involved a young chimp named Washoe. Washoe (who is still alive and lives on a sanctuary here in the Pacific Northwest) merely mimicked the signs she had been taught until one day she put her doll into a cup and signed "Washoe baby in cup," something she had not been taught. This was an example of abstract thought vis a vis a phrase she had been taught and was copying to gain a specific response.

    If you place food on the other side of a fence, a chicken will run back and forth along the fence until it gets to an end and can get around it. A dog will merely go to the end of the fence and around. The dog, apparently, is able to "think" out the abstract problem while the chicken is not.
    I do NOT consider either of these to be examples of abstract thought. Examples of creativity yes and again I do NOT think that creativity constitutes abstract thought any more than complex problem solving does this. Both of these, creativity and complex problem solving are things that I think ALL living things are capable to some degree or other for it is inherent in the evolutionary process itself. All one has to do is look at the diversity of species and you will see an abundance of both creativity and complex problem solving - the evolutionary process accomplishes both of these. I find in natural therefore that individual organism have developed a capacity for these to some degree as well.

    I am NOT being dogmatic here, by the way, because I will not claim that a dog or chimp is incapable of abstract thought but ONLY that I have seen absolutely NO convincing evidence as yet for abstract thought in any animal. AND I strongly suspect that IF such evidence is found, it will be found in animals that have had close and prolonged contact with human beings.

    It is certainly possible to imagine the development of abstract thought apart from human beings, but I feel quite certain that there are at least two important ingredients that are necessary for this development and that is language and the ability to alter ones environment outside the limits of biological function (though the order of causality here is a bit ambiguous). The second requirement causes me to doubt whether even the dolphins and whales really have abstract thought. In fact, I think these two requirement are even connected to some degree, and this may explain why scientists continue to doubt whether cetacean methods of communication can really be called language. What seems far more promising in the cases of both cetaceans and chimps like the benobos is the abiltiy to learn language rather any evidence that they actually have language by themselves.
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

    I now have a blog too: http://astahost.blogspot.com/
    Reply With Quote  
     

  28. #27  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Beautiful Pacific Northwest, USA
    Posts
    2,116
    Mitchell said:
    *****, and so forth
    I think your view of abstract thought may be a little bit narrower than some others might have. Here are some definitions:
    Noun
    abstract thought - thinking that is coherent and logical
    logical thinking, reasoning

    cerebration, intellection, mentation, thinking, thought process, thought - the process of using your mind to consider something carefully; "thinking always made him frown"; "she paused for thought"

    analytic thinking, analysis - the abstract separation of a whole into its constituent parts in order to study the parts and their relations

    line of reasoning, logical argument, argumentation, argument, line - a course of reasoning aimed at demonstrating a truth or falsehood; the methodical process of logical reasoning; "I can't follow your line of reasoning"

    conjecture - reasoning that involves the formation of conclusions from incomplete evidence

    deductive reasoning, synthesis, deduction - reasoning from the general to the particular (or from cause to effect)

    illation, inference - the reasoning involved in drawing a conclusion or making a logical judgment on the basis of circumstantial evidence and prior conclusions rather than on the basis of direct observation

    prediction, anticipation, prevision - the act of predicting (as by reasoning about the future)

    ratiocination
    - logical and methodical reasoning

    reasoning backward, regress - the reasoning involved when you assume the conclusion is true and reason backward to the evidence

    synthetic thinking, synthesis - the combination of ideas into a complex whole
    -- taken from http://www.thefreedictionary.com/abstract+thought

    As you can see, there is a whole lot of stuff that can be considered abstract thinking. And after looking at this, I am not as sure as I was before that the octopus example does not possibly display some form of abstract thinking. But, again, I would want to know if this is an adaptation of a normal instinctive escape technique or if this technique is learned and unique to this particular octopus.

    I think the idea of processing abstract thought involves taking two seemingly unrelated thoughts and putting them together into one cohesive thought. I would say my earlier examples can be found in the above definitions.

    Perhaps you are limiting yourself to the definition of abstract which does deal with not apparent on the surface but focuses on the thought itself. And abstract painting does not have apparent meaning on the surface, but may have meaning to the individual viewer based on what he makes of it.

    But getting back to the OP, I remember this topic was discussed once before. Mitchell seems to take the position that soul and spirit might be the same thing. I could not find the thread where that was discussed, but I do remember that I halfway agreed with you but felt the Bible used two different concepts for soul -- one of which might be similar to spirit while the other is not.

    The Bible sometimes talks about souls in the same sense that we would say that some 3,000 souls died in the 9-11 attack meaning that 3,000 individuals died. But the Bible also uses soul to mean that inner part of the person which is immortal and does not die as when it might say something like, "He was moved in his soul." It is one of those Bible double entendres. I think the Bible tends to treat spirit sort of as that inner part of us which makes us individuals in the way we are motivated to act and react in our environment.

    And there is always Hebrews 4:12 which says, "For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing assunder of soul and spirit. . ." So, the Bible tends to suggest that the two are different things unless you consider this a redundancy for purposes of emphasis.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
    Reply With Quote  
     

  29. #28  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UTAH, USA
    Posts
    3,112
    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    The Bible sometimes talks about souls in the same sense that we would say that some 3,000 souls died in the 9-11 attack meaning that 3,000 individuals died. But the Bible also uses soul to mean that inner part of the person which is immortal and does not die as when it might say something like, "He was moved in his soul." It is one of those Bible double entendres. I think the Bible tends to treat spirit sort of as that inner part of us which makes us individuals in the way we are motivated to act and react in our environment.
    1 Cor 15 make it clear that the spirit is that which is eternal, but I know of nothing similar about the "soul". The real problem is that the soul is variously translated from different words, making it hard to really pin down what it means. Sometimes it seems to mean the same thing and other times something different. It is often translated from words meaning "life" or "person" in the original language.

    The idea that the soul is immortal seems to be more connected with Greek philosophy than the Bible.

    IN FACT, in one translation 1 Cor 15:45 says, "The first man, Adam, became a living soul; The last Adam became a life-giving spirit." Others translate this as "The first man Adam became a living being; the last Adam, a life-giving spirit." This it seems to me is typical of the ambiguity of the term "soul", and the context makes it difficult to see this as something which is eternal, but it seems quite clear to me at least which is the more important term, especially in the New Testament.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    And there is always Hebrews 4:12 which says, "For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing assunder of soul and spirit. . ." So, the Bible tends to suggest that the two are different things unless you consider this a redundancy for purposes of emphasis.
    ...and thus the confusion regarding what the soul actually represents is likewise greater...
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

    I now have a blog too: http://astahost.blogspot.com/
    Reply With Quote  
     

  30. #29  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Beautiful Pacific Northwest, USA
    Posts
    2,116
    Mitchell wrote:

    1 Cor 15 make it clear that the spirit is that which is eternal, but I know of nothing similar about the "soul". The real problem is that the soul is variously translated from different words, making it hard to really pin down what it means. Sometimes it seems to mean the same thing and other times something different. It is often translated from words meaning "life" or "person" in the original language.
    I would not discount this as a reasonable understanding of the issue although it would seem that the "soul" is that which distinguishes humanity. In Genesis 2:5, the more detailed account of Adam says that God "breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and man became a living soul." KJV

    In Old Testament parlance, the words for both spirit and soul have a connection with the concept of breathing. Where our translations of Gen. 1:2 which say God's spirit "moved upon the face of the waters," the word there could be translated "God's breath moved," etc.

    Without any particular investment of conviction, I have gleaned from my reading that the Bible first notes that God created mankind, but it is not until after He breathed the breath of life into man that he receive the name Adam. My conclusion here (combined with the knowledge that Cain's wife came from the Land of Nod) suggests to me that there were other humanoids besides Adam when Adam became a living soul, and that Adam represents the point in human development when God took special steps to reveal himself to humanity.

    What satisfies me is that this incident represents God instilling his spirit into the man to give life to, or perhaps to activate, his soul which had hitherto been inoperative. But you are correct that the word translated soul in the Old Testament tends to mean a living, breathing thing most of the time.

    I have often pictured the relationship of soul and spirit as being sort of like an electrical circuit with God being the power generator. In my picture, the soul is that part of the human which is connected to a spiritual plug-in while the spirit is the conduit by which God's spirit is infused into the soul which in turn can communicate this spirit into the intellect of the human.

    This analogy, obviously, does not fully represent all my thinking on this stuff, but it sort of represents how I think this all works together. As you recall the Bible says we are made in God's image. God is a three aspect being -- Father, son, and spirit. It seems to me that it should follow that we are three aspect beings also -- mind (supported by the body), soul and spirit.

    In that aspect of the analogy, I find that our body and mind emulates the intellectual aspect of God the Father, while the soul represents Jesus, the active aspect of our being with the spirit being the communication aspect.

    So, in my way of thinking, both the soul and spirit are eternal. No analogy can perfectly emulate the real thing but this tends to satisfy me. Certainly, anyone can pick out flaws, but I try to maintain a "spirit" of adaptability. Where the analogy breaks down, I consider it a normal function of attempting to represent the supernatural which we do not fully understand with the natural which we do sort of understand.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
    Reply With Quote  
     

  31. #30  
    (Q)
    (Q) is offline
    Forum Isotope (Q)'s Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    2,650
    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner

    I would not discount this as a reasonable understanding of the issue although it would seem that the "soul" is that which distinguishes humanity.

    I have often pictured the relationship of soul and spirit as being sort of like an electrical circuit with God being the power generator. In my picture, the soul is that part of the human which is connected to a spiritual plug-in while the spirit is the conduit by which God's spirit is infused into the soul which in turn can communicate this spirit into the intellect of the human.
    Wonderful bit of articulation and nonsense, Dayton. Of course, no such "plug-ins" or "conduits" or "power generators" have been discovered beyond Daytons vivid imagination.

    Pray tell, Dayton, where are these amazing things you assert?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  32. #31  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Beautiful Pacific Northwest, USA
    Posts
    2,116
    I would not expect anyone as spiritually disconnected as (Q) to make any sense out of this. It is like getting the light bulb to work without a power source or a means to transmit the power to the bulb. And then saying, "You know something, Thomas Edison, this will never work."
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
    Reply With Quote  
     

  33. #32  
    (Q)
    (Q) is offline
    Forum Isotope (Q)'s Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    2,650
    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    I would not expect anyone as spiritually disconnected as (Q) to make any sense out of this. It is like getting the light bulb to work without a power source or a means to transmit the power to the bulb. And then saying, "You know something, Thomas Edison, this will never work."
    I would agree that no one as deluded as you could make sense of your ramblings. Your insane, yet imaginative descriptions of a soul are entertaining, but are boring without any basis in fact or reality as you pretend to sound smart.

    Could you at the very least touch down on the planets surface for some enlightenment into your rant?

    Thomas Edison would probably consider you a dolt.

    "My mind is incapable of conceiving such a thing as a soul. I may be in error, and man may have a soul; but I simply do not believe it. [Thomas Edison, Do We Live Again?]

    All Bibles are man-made. [Thomas Edison]

    So far as religion of the day is concerned, it is a damned fake... Religion is all bunk. [Thomas Edison]
    Reply With Quote  
     

  34. #33  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UTAH, USA
    Posts
    3,112
    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    1 Cor 15 make it clear that the spirit is that which is eternal, but I know of nothing similar about the "soul". The real problem is that the soul is variously translated from different words, making it hard to really pin down what it means. Sometimes it seems to mean the same thing and other times something different. It is often translated from words meaning "life" or "person" in the original language.
    I would not discount this as a reasonable understanding of the issue although it would seem that the "soul" is that which distinguishes humanity. In Genesis 2:5, the more detailed account of Adam says that God "breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and man became a living soul." KJV
    But that is just the problem - that passage does not do anything of the sort. It only says that Adam became a living "soul" and not that this is any different from the animals. The Hebrew word there "nephesh" is used for man and animal (Genesis 1:20,21,24,30). This is why it is translated as "being" in other translations. I think that this is the very thing that is being quoted in 1 Cor 15:45 and thus is in fact saying that the first man Adam became a living creature - an animal - and it is only the last man Adam that became a life giving spirit. Now I don't think this means that Adam had no spirit, but that the emphasis here is on what kind of life they had. Adam's life was a life of the body and Jesus' life was a life of the spirit. These two kinds of life are obvious throughout the Bible starting in Genesis chapters 2&3 where Adam is told that on the day he eats of the fruit he will surely die, and he DID die and that is why the only life he has in 1 Cor 15:45 is the life of a physical body and not a spirit.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    In Old Testament parlance, the words for both spirit and soul have a connection with the concept of breathing. Where our translations of Gen. 1:2 which say God's spirit "moved upon the face of the waters," the word there could be translated "God's breath moved," etc.
    YES! BUT in the case of "spirit" we have the clarification of 1 Cor 15, which makes it VERY clear that this is the definition of eternal and imperishable, and again I REPEAT, I see NOTHING similar in regards to the word "soul".


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    What satisfies me is that this incident represents God instilling his spirit into the man to give life to, or perhaps to activate, his soul which had hitherto been inoperative. But you are correct that the word translated soul in the Old Testament tends to mean a living, breathing thing most of the time.
    On the contrary, in addition to the ambiguity of the word "soul", the passage in genesis can very easily mean that man was FIRST made a living breathing biological creature and only AFTERWARDS did man have an eternal spirit. So how shall we know which is the case? Well again 1 Cor 15 clears it all up and specifically and forcefully declares that the physical is first and the spirit is SECOND, with the analogy of the spirit growing from the physical like a plant grows from a seed.



    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    I have often pictured the relationship of soul and spirit as being sort of like an electrical circuit with God being the power generator. In my picture, the soul is that part of the human which is connected to a spiritual plug-in while the spirit is the conduit by which God's spirit is infused into the soul which in turn can communicate this spirit into the intellect of the human.
    Well that may be your picture but I think this picture is completely wrong for the simple reason that there are evil spirits. The spirit is simply our eternal existence and perhaps the soul is something like a conduit between the spirit and the body (giving it life? who knows?), for the spirit can be with God or it can be in hell.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    This analogy, obviously, does not fully represent all my thinking on this stuff, but it sort of represents how I think this all works together. As you recall the Bible says we are made in God's image. God is a three aspect being -- Father, son, and spirit. It seems to me that it should follow that we are three aspect beings also -- mind (supported by the body), soul and spirit.
    Yeah I know that this is a popular way of thinking but I do not buy into it. It seems to be making far too much of the Trinity while simultaneously sounding like heretical understandings of the Trinity. The Trinity is THREE DIFFERENT PERSONS and NOT three parts of a person and so I don't see how us having three parts is any kind image of God. Furthermore it makes two much of the numer three as if God is limited to three and that makes no sense to me at all. I suppose you could say that that is a little too Trinitarian for me. I primarly believe in an infinite God who has revealed Himself to us in three distinct persons.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    So, in my way of thinking, both the soul and spirit are eternal. No analogy can perfectly emulate the real thing but this tends to satisfy me. Certainly, anyone can pick out flaws, but I try to maintain a "spirit" of adaptability. Where the analogy breaks down, I consider it a normal function of attempting to represent the supernatural which we do not fully understand with the natural which we do sort of understand.
    Well as I have said, I don't really know what the "soul" is, if it is anything other than an ambiguous word. Perhaps those who believe in a physical resurrection might have a use for this word for something that is resurrected with a physical existence, but I only believe in a spiritual resurrection and that, completely consistent with science, man (Adam) NEVER had anything but a completely mortal physical body like all of the homo sapien species.
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

    I now have a blog too: http://astahost.blogspot.com/
    Reply With Quote  
     

  35. #34  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Beautiful Pacific Northwest, USA
    Posts
    2,116
    This seems to be, perhaps, a difference of opinion as to the significance of God breathing the "breath of life" into Adam. You, Mitchell, seem to equate this to being the same as God having given life to all creatures. I see it as being a significant indication of the difference between humans and other creatures.

    There is no other animal about whom it is said that God directly breathed the "breath of life" into. This is why I feel that God's direct "breath of life" into Adam differentiates humanity from all other creatures.

    In view of your position that humanity is the product of evolution, I am not sure if you consider Adam as being representative of the first mutation into a human being or if you consider that there were other human beings present on earth simultaneously or even prior to Adam. If Adam was an evolved animal, then he must have been born and grew up. Yet, within the story of his "creation," he appears to be a young man after the "breath of life" was given him. This is another reason I consider the "breath of life" to have changed an already living human. (Mainstream Christianity might well consider this heresy!)

    My feeling is only that the detailed account of the creation of Adam as found in Genesis 2 is representative of God instilling him with something (spirit or soul as you wish) which made him different from previous humans and different from all other animals. Also note that it is only after this event that Adam and Eve are placed in the Garden. Could this have had a corollary purpose of separating them from other humans who existed?

    If mankind is a product of evolution, then the story of God creating Adam from dust is, well, just dust itself. If the story of Adam being created from dust is only symbolic, we must consider the entirety of the story as symbolic and try to determine what it symbolizes.

    I think my position that Adam was not the only member of humanity at the time of the story of his "creation" is partially based on the fact that Cain obviously married other human beings who were not, apparently, also children of Adam and Eve. So those people must have come from someplace and been born and grew up in a similar time frame to Cain.

    I cannot quite accept your restrictive view that nephesh can only mean a "living creature." (see below) I think other uses of the word indicate more possible meanings. I do not have a lot of parallel Bibles, but it would be interesting to note if any other translations say "soul" rather than "being" in Gen. 2:7. Translating it as "living being" is actually sort of redundant since living and being both mean pretty much the same thing. Either word could stand alone there without altering the meaning. Living Bible renders it living person which, to me is not redundant since person (as does soul) defines what is living. (Unless you consider only humans are beings.)

    My problem with your position, Mitchell, is that you seem to say: Well, I don't understand what the soul is, so I will just leave it out of my formula and say the body is finite and the spirit is eternal and that's all we need to know. You sort of sort shrift any significance for the soul. Yet, the word naphesh is used 683 times in the Old Testament and is translated soul about 80 percent of those times.
    I'm just saying the word may have more significance that you seem to give it.

    I cannot deny that the word naphesh is used in the verses you cite, but note that it is translated three different ways in those four verses. Perhaps, it is because, as with many Hebrew words, it had many meanings and nuances which are determined by the context. According to Blue Letter Bible, here are some ways the Bible uses the word: ( http://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/...gs=H5315&t=KJV )

    Naphesh --

    1) soul, self, life, creature, person, appetite, mind, living being, desire, emotion, passion
    a) that which breathes, the breathing substance or being, soul, the inner being of man
    b) living being
    c) living being (with life in the blood)
    d) the man himself, self, person or individual
    e) seat of the appetites
    f) seat of emotions and passions
    g) activity of mind
    1) dubious
    h) activity of the will
    1) dubious
    i) activity of the character
    1) dubious
    Unfortunately, this does not give us verses where these uses are employed. Even so, although the word may be used in reference to any living thing, the Bible does tend to focus on using this word to describe something about humanity that is perhaps beyond the physical. The word does seem to take on a different nuance when used in specific reference to a human than when used generically in reference to other living things.

    I would agree that the New Testament make more extensive use of the term spirit than does the Old Testament. In the I Corinthians passage you rely on, I don't think Paul is necessarily using spirit in the same way as in Romans 16 where he says, "The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit. . ." I think in the Corinthian passage, Paul is differentiating between the physical world and the spiritual world, between the earthy and the heavenly, between the physically living on earth and the spiritually living after physical death. Meanwhile in Romans he is referring to that part of our being which is spiritual while we are still physical and earth bound.
    Spirit, in the New Testament is used to refer to that part of the human person which is spirtual and also to those things which are not physical or earthly, but exist beyond the natural world, those things of the spirit world.

    I think the one thing we may agree on is that neither of us knows much about the soul and what role it plays or whether it is physical or spiritual or both or neither. What's more, I am not convinced that anyone has a developed and expressed a strong theology on this topic.

    As before, I am not locked into this view, but merely expressing what I consider a viable possibility and explaining what I consider a potential flaw in your view. I doubt any Christian will be condemned based on their understanding of soul and spirit.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
    Reply With Quote  
     

  36. #35  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UTAH, USA
    Posts
    3,112
    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    This seems to be, perhaps, a difference of opinion as to the significance of God breathing the "breath of life" into Adam. You, Mitchell, seem to equate this to being the same as God having given life to all creatures. I see it as being a significant indication of the difference between humans and other creatures.
    THAT IS INCORRECT! I am simply saying that the word "soul" of this passage Genesis 2:7 is translated from the Hebrew "nephesh", which is NOT used exclusively for human beings. In is in fact used in Genesis 1:20,21,24,30 and elsewhere in the Bible for animals.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    There is no other animal about whom it is said that God directly breathed the "breath of life" into. This is why I feel that God's direct "breath of life" into Adam differentiates humanity from all other creatures.
    Yes but what is much much more significant is that it is only of human beings that God says He is creating in His own image. I just don't think that this is a Trinitarian image. I think it is an image of God's infinite nature and a direct intimation that in man God is creating children. Where God is infinite actuality, man has an infinite potentiality that can be realized in an eternal parent-child relationship with God. Human beings starting from Adam and Eve are truly God's children because unlike the animals they have an inheritance that comes directly from God.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    In view of your position that humanity is the product of evolution,
    INCORRECT! The biological species, homosapiens is indeed a product of evolution in the same way that Israel is a product of the socio-economic forces of history. That is the conclusion that you will come to IF you restrict yourself to objective observations. But as you know, I do NOT think that this methodology reveals the whole truth. Israel was also a creation of God, just as all the species, the planet, this universe, and I myself is a creation of God.

    BUT a human being is not just a device for the propagation of DNA. A human being is NOT just a biological species. A human being is a mind derived from an inheritance of information that has nothing to do with DNA and which ultimately comes from an inheritiance from God Himself through Adam and Eve.

    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    I am not sure if you consider Adam as being representative of the first mutation into a human being or if you consider that there were other human beings present on earth simultaneously or even prior to Adam.
    NO! That which distinguishes human beings from the animals is NOT DNA. Adam was the first human being but he was not the first homo sapien. Genesis 6 explains it all. The sons of god (Cain, Seth and their descendants) saw that the daughters of men (homo sapien females) were fair and took wives from among them. And from this union were born giants, mighty men of old, men of renown -- i.e. the leaders of human civilization.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    If Adam was an evolved animal, then he must have been born and grew up. Yet, within the story of his "creation," he appears to be a young man after the "breath of life" was given him. This is another reason I consider the "breath of life" to have changed an already living human. (Mainstream Christianity might well consider this heresy!)
    INCORRECT. Magical Christianity is NOT the same thing as Mainstream Christianity. Just because some anti-science fundamentalists believe in an ancient necromancer god who created golems of dust and flesh with a comic book power of command and magic breath, DOES NOT mean that this is the belief of Mainstream Christianity.

    The breath of God most often represents God's communication to man quite often through the Holy Spirit. "Inspiration" means the divine breath. 2Timothy 3:16 "All Scripture is God breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness". Thus it is my belief that this breath in Genesis 2:7 represents God's communication to Adam and that was the beginning of something that spread throughout the world much like a religion and this first religion was a constellation of concepts and ideas (like personhood) which was the essence of humanity itself. Our humanity was the very first religion/philosophy that we had.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    My feeling is only that the detailed account of the creation of Adam as found in Genesis 2 is representative of God instilling him with something (spirit or soul as you wish) which made him different from previous humans and different from all other animals. Also note that it is only after this event that Adam and Eve are placed in the Garden. Could this have had a corollary purpose of separating them from other humans who existed?
    Whereas I think that what came to us via Adam from God was the human mind and it is this which makes us truly the children of God. Let's face it, our bodies are the bodies of primates and that is our inheritance from the animal kindom and through it we have a brotherhood to all animals and life on this planet. But in the human mind we are a completely different form of life which has NO inheritance from the animal kingdom at all. And NO I am not talking about our brains, of course, for in the Benobos, for example, we can see a lot of the same brain function going on as we find in ourselves. The mind is something else - the software rather than the hardware if you like, consisting of concepts and beliefs the origin of which can be found NOWHERE in our DNA.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    I think my position that Adam was not the only member of humanity at the time of the story of his "creation" is partially based on the fact that Cain obviously married other human beings who were not, apparently, also children of Adam and Eve. So those people must have come from someplace and been born and grew up in a similar time frame to Cain.
    That there were other "people" of some kind in the world becomes rather obvious in Genesis 4:14 when Cain expresses fear of such people even though this is before Cain had a son in Genesis 4:17 and before Adam had his third son in Genesis 4:25.

    My position is that Adam WAS the the only member of humanity although there were many members of his species on the earth but the ideas of humanity spread faster than any biological decent ever could. Cain and Seth took the daughters of homo sapiens as their WIVES and by their treatment of them as persons to be loved rather than as breeding stock, these peculiar ideas of love and personhood became theirs as well. For it is by treating our children as persons to be loved that they too learn to see themselves as persons and to give their love to others.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    I cannot quite accept your restrictive view that nephesh can only mean a "living creature."
    That is not my point at all. My point is simply that this word "soul" is ambigous at best, but with possibly dubious origins, quite possibly inserted into the Bible via translation. Anything is of course possible, BUT you can perhaps see why I find in the word "spirit" with the clear explanation in 1 Cor 15, something that is much more certain and reliable.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    My problem with your position, Mitchell, is that you seem to say: Well, I don't understand what the soul is, so I will just leave it out of my formula and say the body is finite and the spirit is eternal and that's all we need to know. You sort of sort shrift any significance for the soul. Yet, the word naphesh is used 683 times in the Old Testament and is translated soul about 80 percent of those times.
    I'm just saying the word may have more significance that you seem to give it.
    Indeed it MAY and it MIGHT NOT. I don't have much use for it --- not yet. So I would read the word as an ambigious term that sometimes means life, sometimes spirit, sometimes mind, sometimes living being, sometimes passion, etc... And thus understanding the passage would involve trying to understand what it means in that particular case.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    I cannot deny that the word naphesh is used in the verses you cite, but note that it is translated three different ways in those four verses. Perhaps, it is because, as with many Hebrew words, it had many meanings and nuances which are determined by the context. According to Blue Letter Bible, here are some ways the Bible uses the word: ( http://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/...gs=H5315&t=KJV )

    Naphesh --

    1) soul, self, life, creature, person, appetite, mind, living being, desire, emotion, passion
    a) that which breathes, the breathing substance or being, soul, the inner being of man
    b) living being
    c) living being (with life in the blood)
    d) the man himself, self, person or individual
    e) seat of the appetites
    f) seat of emotions and passions
    g) activity of mind
    1) dubious
    h) activity of the will
    1) dubious
    i) activity of the character
    1) dubious
    Unfortunately, this does not give us verses where these uses are employed. Even so, although the word may be used in reference to any living thing, the Bible does tend to focus on using this word to describe something about humanity that is perhaps beyond the physical. The word does seem to take on a different nuance when used in specific reference to a human than when used generically in reference to other living things.
    Show me where the "soul" adds ANY insight that is not already to be found in the word "spirit" and perhaps I might see something worthwhile in it, for otherwise it is just a source of a great deal of confusion and unclear thinking as far as I can tell.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    I would agree that the New Testament make more extensive use of the term spirit than does the Old Testament. In the I Corinthians passage you rely on, I don't think Paul is necessarily using spirit in the same way as in Romans 16 where he says, "The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit. . ." I think in the Corinthian passage, Paul is differentiating between the physical world and the spiritual world, between the earthy and the heavenly, between the physically living on earth and the spiritually living after physical death. Meanwhile in Romans he is referring to that part of our being which is spiritual while we are still physical and earth bound.
    Spirit, in the New Testament is used to refer to that part of the human person which is spirtual and also to those things which are not physical or earthly, but exist beyond the natural world, those things of the spirit world.
    Yes but there are also passages which talk about the spirit of a person leaving the body in death or returning to the body to bring it back to life, so I do not see how you can make any distinction here between the spiritual aspect of our existence when we are alive and our spiritual existence after death.

    As a physicist, this distinction Paul is making between physical and spiritual worlds is of paramount importance, for therein lies a key to finding a real reconcilliation between science and Christianity. The very thing that makes the physical perishable is that it is subject to these mathematical laws of physics and that is also the very thing that makes it subject to scientific investigation.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    As before, I am not locked into this view, but merely expressing what I consider a viable possibility and explaining what I consider a potential flaw in your view. I doubt any Christian will be condemned based on their understanding of soul and spirit.
    Not unless they themselves condemn others for their understanding of these things. LOL
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

    I now have a blog too: http://astahost.blogspot.com/
    Reply With Quote  
     

  37. #36  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Beautiful Pacific Northwest, USA
    Posts
    2,116
    I think we have pretty much presented our thinking on this topic and further development will probably not provide much more incite.

    What I am always struck with in discussions of the Bible is that we have a difficult time understanding the complexity of expressing ideas in the languages of the Old and New Testaments.

    Here we are expressing ideas in English, a language which has something like 800,000 words. While we can be very explicit in our expression of thoughts, even with that many words, many of them have numerous meanings and nuances which can lead to failures to communicate.

    My Strong's concordance lists 8,764 Hebrew words that are used in the Old Testament and only 5,624 Greek words used in the New Testament. It is difficult to determine if this is an advantage or disadvantage.

    It means to me that a large percentage of words in Hebrew and Greek had multiple meanings and nuances and that the use of idioms was extensive. Thus, what some things in the literature of those eras meant to the people to whom it was communicated may have been far more clear to them than it is to us.

    I think those of us who sort of study these things and try to understand them are use to the idea that we are going to have a hard time pinning down an exact meaning for a lot of things. We are also use to the idea that perhaps our understanding of something may be incorrect.

    I do not see the religious non-Bible student as being much different from the non-religious non-Bible student. Neither of these groups is really concerned with finding what the Bible is really attempting to communicate. Mostly, they are far more interested in using it to support their preconceived notions or they are attempting to make it say nothing. Mostly they are fully satisfied by adopting what someone else seems to think it means rather than reading it for themselves.

    As with our former discussion on this topic, I remain frustrated by the realization that I do not really understand the concepts of soul and spirit and how they play into our physical and spiritual lives. I cannot help but think of I Cor. 13:12 here: "For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known."
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
    Reply With Quote  
     

  38. #37  
    (Q)
    (Q) is offline
    Forum Isotope (Q)'s Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    2,650
    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    I think we have pretty much presented our thinking on this topic and further development will probably not provide much more incite.
    I read a lot of regurgitated myth and superstitions. When do you actually start thinking, Dayton? Or, was that your version of thinking?

    As with our former discussion on this topic, I remain frustrated by the realization that I do not really understand the concepts of soul and spirit and how they play into our physical and spiritual lives.
    Considering "souls and spirits" haven't been detected to exist, your problem, therefore, is obvious.

    I too have a difficult time understanding the concepts of leprechauns and fairies. Same problem, same reasoning.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  39. #38  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UTAH, USA
    Posts
    3,112
    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    What I am always struck with in discussions of the Bible is that we have a difficult time understanding the complexity of expressing ideas in the languages of the Old and New Testaments.

    Here we are expressing ideas in English, a language which has something like 800,000 words. While we can be very explicit in our expression of thoughts, even with that many words, many of them have numerous meanings and nuances which can lead to failures to communicate.

    My Strong's concordance lists 8,764 Hebrew words that are used in the Old Testament and only 5,624 Greek words used in the New Testament. It is difficult to determine if this is an advantage or disadvantage.

    It means to me that a large percentage of words in Hebrew and Greek had multiple meanings and nuances and that the use of idioms was extensive. Thus, what some things in the literature of those eras meant to the people to whom it was communicated may have been far more clear to them than it is to us.

    I think those of us who sort of study these things and try to understand them are use to the idea that we are going to have a hard time pinning down an exact meaning for a lot of things. We are also use to the idea that perhaps our understanding of something may be incorrect.
    While a lot of what you say here is true, I think it misses out on one important thing as well and that is that God surpasses these limitations and difficulties. Therefore, if the Bible is not just another book, but really represents a communication from God to man such that we can say that it is "the word of God", then I think we must be careful about limiting its ability to communicate to us by the languages in which it was written and the human authors that wrote it. Of course understanding some of these things may help us individually in our efforts to understand but that is not quite the same thing. My point here is that although God gave us a brain and intends us to use it, we must not imagine that God only communicates to the Biblical scholar. If this is God's word to us then we do NOT need someone to act as an interpreter between God and man, for He is quite capable of communicating to us on His own.

    The best of human literature is multifaceted and complex in the way that it communicates to us. The question is whether the communication by God to mankind would be more simple, clear and one-dimensional or even more multifaceted and complex than human writings? I believe that the former is the expectation of those short-sighted "pushers of truth" who would foolishly remake the world in their own image. But I rejoice in the diversity of the natural and human world that God has made and seeing its complexity I stand against the efforts of the obnoxious to simplify it in order to suit their own laziness. Our approach to the Bible must not be to tell others what it means, but instead to share with others the meaning we find in it -- can you see the difference? The first is to make it a dead thing by human hand and the second is to make a living and endless source of truth through which the divine breath (inspiration) can freely flow.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    I do not see the religious non-Bible student as being much different from the non-religious non-Bible student. Neither of these groups is really concerned with finding what the Bible is really attempting to communicate. Mostly, they are far more interested in using it to support their preconceived notions or they are attempting to make it say nothing. Mostly they are fully satisfied by adopting what someone else seems to think it means rather than reading it for themselves.
    Perhaps now you can understand some of my reservation with regards to what you say here. I don't think we must limit the meaning of the Bible to finding out some original intent for the limitation of the human authors is not the limitation of God. If the Bible is going to remain relevant in a world informed by the discoveries of science then the meaning of the Bible must not be limited to some antiquated view of the world.

    I do hear one aspect of what you are saying here: clearly our sincerity and effort is a factor here, God gives to those who ask and desires things with all their heart and not to those with merely idle interest, if for no other reason than because knowledge can easily do more harm than good.


    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    As with our former discussion on this topic, I remain frustrated by the realization that I do not really understand the concepts of soul and spirit and how they play into our physical and spiritual lives. I cannot help but think of I Cor. 13:12 here: "For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known."
    Of course. Certainty is a delusion. Knowledge is only available to the faithful steward who steps steps out in faith to make full use of all that which God has given him to do the best that he can in understanding and action.
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

    I now have a blog too: http://astahost.blogspot.com/
    Reply With Quote  
     

  40. #39  
    Administrator KALSTER's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    South Africa
    Posts
    8,231
    Sorry for barging into the middle of a series of large and varied posts with only this quote:

    The mind is something else - the software rather than the hardware if you like, consisting of concepts and beliefs the origin of which can be found NOWHERE in our DNA.
    You must have heard of the concept of memes or cultural knowledge I assume? That is, knowledge and behaviour carried from and developed through generation to generation through dedicated "schools", and/or parental teaching, and/or assimilated general group knowledge starting from birth, facilitated by our complex language and advanced brains? Similar passed-on knowledge has been observed in our closest relatives as well. Do you not think we could have developed in this way over perhaps 200 000 years on our own, given our built-in abilities and social nature?
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

    "Gullibility kills" - Carl Sagan
    "All people know the same truth. Our lives consist of how we chose to distort it." - Harry Block
    "It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." - Aristotle
    Reply With Quote  
     

  41. #40  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope mitchellmckain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UTAH, USA
    Posts
    3,112
    Quote Originally Posted by (Q)
    I too have a difficult time understanding the concepts of leprechauns and fairies. Same problem, same reasoning.
    Others don't have as much difficulty as you seem to. They are not so inhibited in the use of their imagination. This is a useful human faculty especially for understanding people who are different from yourself.

    It is true that as entities which only exist in stories (as far as we know for we have no evidence to suggest otherwise), it makes no sense to ask questions about what leprechauns and fairies are really like. Of course there may indeed be people in the world who think that they are real and would insist that such questions do make sense, so I do understand that to you we may indeed sound like a couple of Trekkies arguing about Starfleet protocol or something. But as for myself, just because I think that ftl space travel will NEVER be anything more than pure fantasy, that would not prevent me from enjoying a conversation with such Trekkies about how ftl space travel works in their fantasy universe.


    Quote Originally Posted by KALSTER
    Sorry for barging into the middle of a series of large and varied posts with only this quote:

    The mind is something else - the software rather than the hardware if you like, consisting of concepts and beliefs the origin of which can be found NOWHERE in our DNA.
    You must have heard of the concept of memes or cultural knowledge I assume? That is, knowledge and behaviour carried from and developed through generation to generation through dedicated "schools", and/or parental teaching, and/or assimilated general group knowledge starting from birth, facilitated by our complex language and advanced brains? Similar passed-on knowledge has been observed in our closest relatives as well. Do you not think we could have developed in this way over perhaps 200 000 years on our own, given our built-in abilities and social nature?
    That would indeed be a "competing" theory for the orgin of the human mind, as much as a scientific theory can be said to compete with a theological one. Indeed this "competition" could be considered to be a last retreat of creationism to an area that is beyond scientific investigation except in science fiction stories where we have machines to view the events of the past. It is part and parcel of the whole theist/atheist debate over whether the religious nature of humanity represents an aspect of human health or pathology. When it comes to ourselves, some of our belief is a matter of choice because by believing we make it so (an athlete will never win a gold medal unless they believe) and it is part of our perceptive process that we project our beliefs upon the darker corners of reality which includes unknowable aspects of the past.

    There are some things which I WILL insist on pragmatic belief over objective observation for this reason. Take for example, efforts to study differences in innate abilities between different ethnic races. I will poo poo all over such things because regardless of whether we can find statistical evidence of such differences, believing that there are such difference will tend to create them, and refusing to believe in such differences will go a long way towards annihilating them. Do you see what I mean?

    Thus the real competion here is not just between two objective theories about the origins of the human mind but between which path offers the richer and more fruitful development for the human race. Clearly we must cast off things which stand in the way of scientific investigation but I believe it would be a little blind to put all our eggs in one basket so to speak and confine ourselves to the inherent blindness of the methodology of science when it comes to understanding ourselves, when deciding what we are is a part of it.
    See my physics of spaceflight simulator at http://www.relspace.astahost.com

    I now have a blog too: http://astahost.blogspot.com/
    Reply With Quote  
     

  42. #41  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Beautiful Pacific Northwest, USA
    Posts
    2,116
    Mitchell wrote:

    While a lot of what you say here is true, I think it misses out on one important thing as well and that is that God surpasses these limitations and difficulties. Therefore, if the Bible is not just another book, but really represents a communication from God to man such that we can say that it is "the word of God", then I think we must be careful about limiting its ability to communicate to us by the languages in which it was written and the human authors that wrote it.
    Uhhhh, I don't think the limitations are on God in his ability to communicate, but in the abilities of men to understand and re-communicate. I don't think God can communicate beyond the capacity of the recipient to understand.

    Some people see the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah as a picture of a nuclear explosion. Now, I don't believe God flew a B-51 bomber over S&G and dropped a 15 megaton atomic bomb. Even though there is evidence someplace in Africa that some minor nuclear explosions or reactions may have occurred spontaneously on a very minor scale, it does not seem possible that a huge x-megaton spontaneous nuclear explosion could have occurred to bring about the destruction of S&G.

    But, accepting arguendo, that God had done so, how would he have explained that to Moses in such a way that Moses could have used his Hebrew language to explain it. Unless, of course, He did and Moses did and those who see the story as representing a nuclear explosion are correct?

    What is God going to tell Moses? "Well, you see E=mc(2) and if you take uranium (something Moses did not even know existed) and enrich it and so on thru a long litany of the process of constructing and detonating a nuclear bomb, how would Moses understand and communicate that.

    Even you, as a teacher, cannot communicate beyond the ability of your students to understand and it is not your limitation that causes the communication gap. In the same way, I do not think God is able to communicate beyond our ability to understand even if He has given us the straight and accurate information. You would certainly not attempt to teach what you teach to kindergartners. (As an aside though, a local school district is teaching math by using algebra concepts and formulas in the first grade and the products of this system are vastly more knowledgeable and understanding of math than those who are involved in traditional classes.)

    But you know, it might be kinda of a fun experiment for you to go into classes of young students, say first graders to maybe sixth graders and explain some actual event in terms of complex physics processes and then have them explain in a writing to someone who did not hear your lecture what they think you said. (Do I see a paper and tenure in this project?)

    I am probably more of an absolutest than you are in that I subscribe to the school that God had a specific message in mind when He directed the writers, but that the specific message may have many applications beyond the event(s) which precipitated the message. But in order to make the proper expanded applications it is essential to understand the specifics of the original message.

    But back to Sodom and Gomorrah, while it is easy to get caught up in how the destruction might have been brought about, it is far more important to understand why. This is sometimes the main problem in Bible understanding, we get caught up in trying to understand that which is not really important in the story while ignoring the meaningful part of the message being communicated.

    It is sort of like the resurrection morning stories. One says a gardener was there; another says an angel was there and another says two angels were there. And different people are listed among those who went to the tomb. We can get all caught up with trying to reconcile those apparently conflicting details and overlook the one thing that is consistent -- Who wasn't there? My feeling is that if it had been important to know who was actually at the tomb and who came there, the stories would have been consistent on that detail. As it is, these discrepancies in non essential details provide fodder for non-believers while believers focus on the really important part of the story. It does not make any difference who was there, Jesus was inexplicably gone!
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
    Reply With Quote  
     

  43. #42  
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Norway
    Posts
    927
    just wanted to say that all lifeforms are interdependent on eachother.
    just like the cells in our body are interdependent of eachother.
    when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth
    A.C Doyle
    Reply With Quote  
     

  44. #43  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Beautiful Pacific Northwest, USA
    Posts
    2,116
    deja wrote:

    just wanted to say that all lifeforms are interdependent on each other.
    just like the cells in our body are interdependent of each other.
    Not sure I can completely agree with that. It does not quite explain why the passenger pigeon is extinct while we are still here. Apparently, they were more interdependent on us than we were on them.

    I understand what you are saying, but not all life forms are exactly interdependent upon all other life forms. Some are directly dependent upon some others, some are indirectly dependent on some others while some are in no way dependent on some others. The survival of the human race, for example, was not affected in any way by the extinction of the passenger pigeon.

    The way of life on earth is that when one life form disappears, it may work to the detriment of some other life form while enhancing others.

    As to all the cells of our bodies: many humans today are perfectly capable of survival, maybe even of enhanced life, without their appendix. The appendix is, of course, dependent upon the rest of the body for survival, but the body is not dependent upon the appendix for survival.

    Not EVERYTHING is interdependent on EVERYTHING else.

    Broad general statements such as these by deja indicate a lack of thoroughly thinking something all the way through.
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
    Reply With Quote  
     

  45. #44  
    (Q)
    (Q) is offline
    Forum Isotope (Q)'s Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    2,650
    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellmckain
    Others don't have as much difficulty as you seem to. They are not so inhibited in the use of their imagination. This is a useful human faculty especially for understanding people who are different from yourself.

    It is true that as entities which only exist in stories (as far as we know for we have no evidence to suggest otherwise), it makes no sense to ask questions about what leprechauns and fairies are really like. Of course there may indeed be people in the world who think that they are real and would insist that such questions do make sense, so I do understand that to you we may indeed sound like a couple of Trekkies arguing about Starfleet protocol or something. But as for myself, just because I think that ftl space travel will NEVER be anything more than pure fantasy, that would not prevent me from enjoying a conversation with such Trekkies about how ftl space travel works in their fantasy universe.
    Thanks Mitch, sorry for not seeing this earlier as I was engrossed in Muslim hatred and bigotry.

    I don't think I lack an imagination, it's just that I use it for more constructive thought processes, such as new concepts and ideas for telescope builds. But, I can at least understand where you're coming from and will view more of your posts through this process.
    Religious Fundamentalist Club - Member #1.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  46. #45  
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Norway
    Posts
    927
    Quote Originally Posted by daytonturner
    deja wrote:
    Broad general statements such as these by deja indicate a lack of thoroughly thinking something all the way through.
    yes it was a broad statement, and as you have shown, correct in the context. since as you mentioned, its true that the body's components are not all interdependent on eachother for functioning.
    just things in nature are not all interdependent on eachother.
    but removing critical organs, or major critical portions of the ecosystem will have a similarly detrimental effect on both. which was my main point.
    when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth
    A.C Doyle
    Reply With Quote  
     

  47. #46  
    Forum Freshman SlugMan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    26
    This all depends on what your definition is of a soul. Be your mind, spirit or that thing that floats to the pearly gates. What your thinking with is really just part of your entire nervous system thats stimulated with varies of emotion wich are chemical releases in your brain. I guess its really your conscience mind. Scientificly speaking.

    Now about other living things having souls. Plants I don't think so. As they do react but only on reflexes. A toy can be throw and a dog can hit an electric fence. This is its reaction and what it wants to do cuz it wants to chew it and stuff. Now the next time the dog comes around it might try to avoid this fence cuz it remember hitting it using its brain. What about very low levels of life like a nematode and other worms. I'm not really quite sure but they do have a start of a nervous system and eventuly a brain.
    I appoligize for mistakes in grammar, puncuation, and spelling. Cuz i suck at that stuff.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  48. #47  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Beautiful Pacific Northwest, USA
    Posts
    2,116
    SlugMan signatures:
    I appoligize for mistakes in grammar, puncuation, and spelling. Cuz i suck at that stuff.
    Do you also apologize for your post not making any sense at all about anything at all?
    Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

    If God DID do all of this, is He not the greatest scientist of all? -- dt, 2005
    Reply With Quote  
     

  49. #48  
    Time Lord
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    5,328
    Quote Originally Posted by samcdkey
    I never said cells and whatnot weren't living organisms, I just contested that they aren't living in their own right. By that I mean that they don't stand much of a chance without their support network, so they aren't really dependant.
    Like a man on the moon?
    A cosmonaut died out in space once. Most electronics in her craft went cold, including the radio receiver. So she kept calling Earth. Over and over.

    We knew by breathing monitor when she died. But suppose there were no signals either way. Then was the cosmonaut dead at a particular time? When and why is that?

    There are also miners trapped underground and missing persons, so it's not really unnatural that people die unobserved. Quantum physics has some strange things to say about those people. Or souls do meddle with physics, it seems.
    A pong by any other name is still a pong. -williampinn
    Reply With Quote  
     

  50. #49  
    Forum Ph.D. Raziell's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    927
    I believe life is artificial. That every action is determined, that free will is an illusion. In a sense i dont think a human has any more of a "soul" than a tree. It just lives... and dies...

    Soul is an idea born out of fear of not existing anymore. Allthough i wish it was true, id rather observe the world for what it really is nomatter how painfull. Than fool myself to live a life based on a lie.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  51. #50 Re: soul and evolution 
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    675
    Quote Originally Posted by otto
    I believe in the evolution. But I do not believe that animals, meaning all Multicellular organisms for example: dogs or Jellyfish, have a soul. Or do they?
    If they don't and we do, then when did our ancestors (who evolved from monkeys to humans) gain their soul? and how? I came as far as writting down the main difference between Humans and animals, which is, that mentally healthy humans have reason and animals do not (or not as much as we do). So if that is the only difference then our reason must be connected to our soul.
    Reason= the capacity for rational thought or inference or discrimination (http://dictionary.die.net/reason)
    Thought is the sum of the functions of the brain. Therefore, No working human brain = No Thought.=> No reason = No soul Is this correct?
    and what is with retards?
    We all do the best with what we have. This is the perfection of God and the soul.

    You misunderstand how the soul works.

    God does not track us in our day to day lives.

    A good analogy for the soul, would be to see your mind as a radio transmitter, whose electrical activity at death, via telepathy, does a quick download of all data, to the cosmic consciousness that encompasses God and heaven. This transition from corporeal to non corporeal can be done in no other way. Religiously speaking, in the spirit, was a common claim, of some of the writers of scripture.

    It is hardwired in those whose brains are built to do such. Humans for sure as it is our next evolution, and animals to some extent.

    This means that there is no hell for any of us. God does not lose any of His perfect creations.

    Regards
    DL
    Reply With Quote  
     

  52. #51  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    675
    Quote Originally Posted by SlugMan
    This all depends on what your definition is of a soul. Be your mind, spirit or that thing that floats to the pearly gates. What your thinking with is really just part of your entire nervous system thats stimulated with varies of emotion wich are chemical releases in your brain. I guess its really your conscience mind. Scientificly speaking.

    Now about other living things having souls. Plants I don't think so. As they do react but only on reflexes. A toy can be throw and a dog can hit an electric fence. This is its reaction and what it wants to do cuz it wants to chew it and stuff. Now the next time the dog comes around it might try to avoid this fence cuz it remember hitting it using its brain. What about very low levels of life like a nematode and other worms. I'm not really quite sure but they do have a start of a nervous system and eventuly a brain.
    Thoughts are the product of consciousness. A computer can be said to be thinking or an animal or even a plant as they all contain data. It could be said that all things are data.

    It is knowing it that gives us the advantage. For this, consciousness is required.

    I would imagine that from the heavenly realm, that as they go by, whatever consciousness lives in all things are evaluated, used and or absorbed.
    If only general software as would be in animals, is viewed, ie. only instincts, then I would think that it would not be added to the heavenly host. They are concerned with learning and would want only those things that lead to a higher learning plane. All data is good but only one sample of each group needs representation if not attached to a self knowing consciousness.

    Resistance is futile. It is our next evolution.

    Regards
    DL
    Reply With Quote  
     

  53. #52  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    675
    Quote Originally Posted by Raziell
    I believe life is artificial. That every action is determined, that free will is an illusion. In a sense i dont think a human has any more of a "soul" than a tree. It just lives... and dies...

    Soul is an idea born out of fear of not existing anymore. Allthough i wish it was true, id rather observe the world for what it really is nomatter how painfull. Than fool myself to live a life based on a lie.
    Determined by whom?

    Regards
    DL
    Reply With Quote  
     

Bookmarks
Bookmarks
Posting Permissions
  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •