Do we have soul?

Discussion in 'Religion' started by Saint, Dec 28, 2013.

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  1. Baldeee Valued Senior Member

    I am merely raising issue with your unsupported claim.
    What bells wants to respond with is up to bells.
    Don't assume that I am taking bells' position as my own, however, just because I have issue with you unsupporting a claim.
    Whereas bells might be taking one position, and you another, I may well be in the "I don't know" position.
    You have raised issue with bells not supporting a claim.
    In doing so you raised an unsupported claim of your own.
    To remind you:
    You argued: "that there are many aspects of the totality of the human mind, conscious, and unconscious that are not reconcilable with a mere biological analysis of the brain as the only valid subject of investigation."
    From which I said that if you had qualified by "are currently not reconcilable..." you would be correct.
    But your statement implies impossibility - that they are not reconcilable. Period.
    You have yet to address this claim with any support other than that they may not be currently reconcilable.
    Being currently unreconcilable does not equate to not being possible to reconcile.
    I have quoted several times your claim that I have raised issue with.
    You have yet to support it.
    You claimed that matters of the psyche are unreconcilable with biological analysis of the brain as the only line of investigation.
    This is different than now saying that psychology does not address biological issues.
    Just because psychology does not address biology (your admission) does not mean biology can not address matters of psychology (your previous claim) even if it currently doesn't.
    I have read it.
    Have you, beyond the "vs"?
    Where does it say in that paragraph that cognitive science is incapable (now and forever) of establishing that which cognitive psychology currently establishes?
    Neuroscience, work in artificial intelligence, to name but two.
    The lines between the science and psychology are blurred, yet you dismiss them as if mutually exclusive with regard the psyche.
    Perhaps this will help you realise that you have your eyes closed in this regard.
    Is psychology the better method for examining psychological phenomena?
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  3. TheHun Registered Member

    Sorry about interrupting this train of thought, but I could not access the thread for a while. Still, I wanted to respond to the orangist, who seems to be interested in orange deconstruction because he thinks that the soul is an equivalent of an orange—reducible to taste.
    Oh, all of a sudden we are only talking about juice; you should have mentioned that in one of your earlier diatribes about oranges being reduced to taste. And you, like all of those preachy types, need not be so ridiculously condescending when you are called on the tripe you spout.
    Just because you change things around and pretend that you said something different from what you posted is just lame.

    Yes, in your mind an orange may be reduced to taste, but that does not make it so. Or are you willing to concede that you are equally reducible to the taste of your blood for example? You might think that you are dealing with imbeciles around here—but that does not make it so. And calling me paranoid because I question your simplistic assertions is just another sign of attacking me (and others) who disagree with you. It is a tactic you use when you have nothing of substance to say.

    First you go on and on about the taste of oranges being the only thing that makes them oranges and then you say that replicating the taste alone does not give you an orange. Inconsistent, aren’t you? Either you believe one or the other. Talking in circles does not make you sound any better, it just shows the limits of your willingness to engage in any debate that challenges your reality.
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  5. Yazata Valued Senior Member

    'Psyche' (or 'psuche') is the Greek word that we translate as 'soul'. The ancient Greeks imagined the psyche as the animator of living things. (Our word 'animal' derives from that.) The ancient Greek word for 'living' was 'empsukhon', literally 'ensouled'. Aristotle wrote an entire book ('De anima') that addresses this subject, in which he included self-nutrition, reproduction, movement and perception as functions of the psyche, alongside functions that we are more likely to think of today as 'psychological' powers, like memory, reason and language comprehension.

    Part of the problem in this thread is that when we discuss 'soul', we are discussing one of the more ancient concepts in our vocabulary. We should remember that when most of the Christian writers of late antiquity were writing in Greek about the soul, they used the word 'psyche'.

    Today we seem to have pretty much dropped the more biological connotations of the word. It's possible to observe the end-stages of that development in the 18th and 19th century literature, as arguments still raged around vitalism and about the existence of some mysterious 'life-force' that animated living things. People, some of them famous biologists of the time, still argued that no scientific understanding of physiology will ever fully explain the phenomenon of life. But today, with the explosion of knowledge in biochemistry and molecular biology, those kind of ideas seem dated and passe.

    And today, the focus of that style of argument has moved over into the realm of 'mind', towards the more 'psychological' ('psyche' + 'logy', discourse about the psyche) areas of understanding, reason, intention and subjective awareness. We still see people, some of them famous philosophers, arguing that no understanding of neurophysiology will ever explain the phenomenal nature of lived experience.

    The issue in these arguments isn't whether or not the brain is biological. Of course it is. The issue is whether or not all of the functions of the psyche, in contemporary thought particularly the 'psychological' ones, can be reduced to or explained by brain physiology.

    My own opinion is that they probably will be in the future, just as the more biological functions like reproduction have been explained by the life sciences, but that's still a work-in-progress.

    I'm perfectly happy to explain what my opinion is on that issue, but I don't want to say that I know with absolute certainty that brain function accounts for 'psychology'. I do think that it's highly probable that that it does and I can advance a number of arguments for that more modest assertion. But the flat assertion that it's simply a fact seems to me to be getting out in front of the data and threatens to turn trust in science into an expression of faith. (And that's precisely what science is for many laypeople, including many atheists.)
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  7. (Q) Encephaloid Martini Valued Senior Member

    It's common knowledge, well, at least not to Syne and yourself, obviously. I suppose I shouldn't be surprised about that.
  8. lightgigantic Banned Banned

    Which then leaves you with the problem of cognitive psychology making a host of claims bereft of any evidence that they are ultimately attributed to the brain
  9. Syne Sine qua non Valued Senior Member

    By that argument, the existence of theology proves the existence of a god, right? Just because a subject is studied/practiced assuming a certain premise does not make that premise necessarily true.

    Fields such as social psychiatry, clinical psychology, and sociology may offer non-biomedical accounts of mental distress and disorder for certain ailments and are sometimes critical of biopsychiatry. Social critics believe biopsychiatry fails to satisfy the scientific method because they believe there is no testable biological evidence of mental disorders. Thus, these critics view biological psychiatry as a pseudoscience attempting to portray psychiatry as a biological science. -
  10. (Q) Encephaloid Martini Valued Senior Member

    "In its early years, critics held that the empiricism of cognitive psychology was incompatible with its acceptance of internal mental states. However, the sibling field of cognitive neuroscience has provided evidence of physiological brain states that directly correlate with mental states - thus providing support for the central assumption of cognitive psychology."
  11. Syne Sine qua non Valued Senior Member

    He made no pronouncement about any future possibility. And you cannot dismiss current evidence with only a "science of the gaps".

    Physiological correlates do not prove physiological cause.
  12. Syne Sine qua non Valued Senior Member

    Yes, we certainly can.
  13. Syne Sine qua non Valued Senior Member

    Thread closed due to repeated trolling and straw man arguments.
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