Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Broken Souls

I was curious about the notion of souls and their growth. Presumably, things such as ants or bacteria do not have souls, but humans do. Thus, it would seem that at some basic stage in our growth as humans (zygote, embryo, fetus, etc.) we would develop a soul. This fits in nicely with the soul or mind as being motivating for our behavior. However, I was wondering about people who are perhaps hit in the head with a pipe by an angered materialist. If they become brain damaged, does their soul stop growing? Is there soul less complete than other people's? Is it broken? As I have ever heard the notion of souls, it seems that as humans we all recieve some sort of soul, but I would doubt that most people would say that Person X has a better functioning soul than Person Y.

So my questions are this:
1) Is the mind then different from the soul? (Sam's triple theory)
2) Does the soul grow? Can it be broken? Is it a container to be filled, but all souls have equal potential?



Blogger Rachel said...

Ok, so, if i were to accept that sould exist in the first place, i would say that souls and minds have to be the same. There is no reason to have both. personally, i think the brain holds the answers anyway, but that's unimportant. in terms of the issue of a sould developing, it probably does. however, the mind developes in the same way. The mind is not fully developed at any time thoughtout the human process. By the same argument, neither is the soul. A fetus does not have the same mind that a 2 or 18 or 45 year old has (in the same body). This would suggest, that if a mind could be damaged then a soul could be damaged. However, since i am assuming that souls exist, this would mean that the brain is like a 'translator' (jason's theory from class) for the mind to the physical world. this would suggest, that being hit in the head only damages the brain and not the mind. So the translator to the physical world is imparied, the the actual mind or soul is not. So a soul/mind would grow in this pretense, but could not be broken through physical means. It is possible deep emotional trama could break the soul, but that is a dif question.

11:48 AM  
Blogger Russell said...

I don't believe that minds are different from souls. I am temporarily considering that there are immaterial objects out there, but even with this, I see no point for there to be two different immaterial objects per person. A person's essence would be their mind or soul. I am saying mind, but it could also be a soul that directly effects the mind.
Under this consideration, the mind is something that changes with age. I agree that we have different minds at different times in our lives, but the mind is always a complete thing. The mind can also be affected by outside influence (2x4 to the head). But that doesn't mean it is broken, just affected.
Can a material object affect an immaterial thing? It seems so, so I will say that the mind can be destroyed.

3:51 PM  
Blogger Rachel said...

Ok, can a material object affect an immaterial thing? I touched on this a little, but i'm adding now. The physical and immaterial world can't be that seperate because from what we've talked about, there is constant interaction. The mind interacts with the physical brain, and people interact with immaterial things like G-d, assuming G-d exists. People think they are interacting with G-d all the time. People interact with their minds every second. In that case, it would seem that physical means could break or hurt immaterial objects. Unless of couse, it only hurts the translator to the physical world, like I talked about before. However, think about if immaterial things could be affected by physical things. G-d is supposedly immaterial. So that would mean that human, the physical would, could physicaly break G-d. That doesn't follow with what has been said about G-d, so that would lead to either G-d doesn't exist, or physical things can't affect immaterial things.

8:10 PM  
Blogger Sam Lehman said...

Well, since you referenced me, I am going ot go ahead and say yes the mind and soul are different entities. The mind is a concious, active computational device. Whereas, a soul is a recording, a book if you will, of all the actions taken by the body, and all the thoughts of the mind.
In answer to your second question I would say that that each person's soul has equal potential, and starts out as a tabula raza, a blank slate. different thoughts and experiences fill this slate as a person continues on in life until death or a seriously traumatic injury affects access to the soul (not necessarily the soul itself)

9:13 PM  
Blogger Michael Silverman said...

If souls are breakable as you suggest, it seems that souls are physical entities, because otherwise you have a non-physical thing being changed by a physical action. This whole concept seems odd so I wonder if it would be possible to even hurt a soul. However, if you have absoloutly no physical way to interact with the soul, it seems impossible for it to affect the human mind. So, that is why I don't like the soul theory.

11:48 AM  

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