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Are humans special?


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#151    Rlyeh

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 02:09 PM

View Postshadowx, on 13 January 2013 - 12:04 AM, said:

We have souls, animals do not.
Or at least the ability to fools ourselves into believing it.


#152    Rlyeh

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 02:16 PM

View PostArtaxerxes, on 13 January 2013 - 12:09 AM, said:

Our separateness is an illusion.  We are all part of God.   We view everything as being separate and apart in this life but in actuality we live in a holographic universe and everything here is a projection from someplace else.  

The Universe as a Hologram:

"If the apparent separateness of subatomic particles is illusory, it means that at a deeper level of reality all things in the universe are infinitely interconnected."

http://www.earthport...m/hologram.html

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The holographic universe has nothing to do with god, and by being derived from string theory some have gone as far to say god has no place.
However this really has nothing to do with the topic.


#153    Mr Walker

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 02:33 PM

View PostRlyeh, on 16 January 2013 - 02:09 PM, said:

Or at least the ability to fools ourselves into believing it.
Perhaps the ability to fool ourselves into believing we have a soul is the evidence that we do have one. Most of the psychological abilities of humans such as the ability to delude onesself are associated with other abilities which give all sapient self aware beings a soul.  Eg one doesnt need to delude ones self if one is not in internal conflict, or cannot recognise the differnce between destructive and creative thoughts and actions.

You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world..

Be cheerful.

Strive to be happy.

#154    Rlyeh

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 02:39 PM

View PostMr Walker, on 16 January 2013 - 02:33 PM, said:

Perhaps the ability to fool ourselves into believing we have a soul is the evidence that we do have one. Most of the psychological abilities of humans such as the ability to delude onesself are associated with other abilities which give all sapient self aware beings a soul.  Eg one doesnt need to delude ones self if one is not in internal conflict, or cannot recognise the differnce between destructive and creative thoughts and actions.
And maybe Heaven's Gate really did ride on a magical space ship.

Everything credited to the soul can be found in the brain.


#155    GreenmansGod

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 02:46 PM

Quote

We've all been dancing around the basic issue: does Data have a soul? I don't know that he has. I don't know that I have!
http://en.memory-alp..._A_Man_(episode)
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#156    Liquid Gardens

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 03:02 PM

View PostMr Walker, on 16 January 2013 - 02:33 PM, said:

Perhaps the ability to fool ourselves into believing we have a soul is the evidence that we do have one.

Perhaps the ability to fool ourselves into believing we have psychic powers, ESP, telekinesis, can speak with the dead is also evidence that we do have those abilities by the same token?

"You can't reason someone out of a position they didn't reason themselves into"
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#157    J. K.

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 04:15 PM

I will admit to have skimmed through most of this, so if this has already been said, I apologize.

A question was raised about being created in God's image:  

And God said , Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.  Genesis 1:26

Exactly what is meant by "in our image, after our likeness" is not clear.  I used to think that part of the image is man's ability to create, as one other post stated.  However, after seeing examples of animals painting (an elephant, a seal, and a blind dog!), and seeing a spider build a mock replica of itself as a decoy, I begin to wonder about that part.  The only thing that humans have that sets us apart from all other biologicals is our spirit: the supernatural, eternal part of us that communicates with God.

As for being special, this verse describes our place in the hiearchy:

4 What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him? 5 For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour. 6 Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands;thou hast put all things under his feet:  (Psalm 8:4-6)

Of course, this is all predicated on the belief of God.  I am aware that it is meaningless for those who prefer other views of our existence.

Edited by J. K., 16 January 2013 - 04:15 PM.

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#158    Abramelin

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 05:47 PM

View Postshadowx, on 13 January 2013 - 12:04 AM, said:

We have souls, animals do not.

What's a soul exactly? And why do you think animals don't have such a thing?

But one thing is true, though

We have soles under our shoes, animals don't wear shoes.


#159    Sean93

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 05:55 PM

This is still going...? Cool.

By now I'll take a guess and say that the discussion is being kept alive by about two or three individulas throwing out rebuttals to each other and who want the last word.

More to the point: Human speciality is only so to the person concerned and how much value is placed on it is subjective and has no correct answer, at least not yet.

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#160    joc

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 05:55 PM

View PostMr Walker, on 16 January 2013 - 02:33 PM, said:

Perhaps the ability to fool ourselves into believing we have a soul is the evidence that we do have one. Most of the psychological abilities of humans such as the ability to delude onesself are associated with other abilities which give all sapient self aware beings a soul.  Eg one doesnt need to delude ones self if one is not in internal conflict, or cannot recognise the differnce between destructive and creative thoughts and actions.
Is being Self Aware the same thing as having a Soul?  Is that the definition?

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#161    Mr Walker

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 02:25 PM

View PostRlyeh, on 16 January 2013 - 02:39 PM, said:

And maybe Heaven's Gate really did ride on a magical space ship.

Everything credited to the soul can be found in the brain.

As to the second; absolutely. The soul is a very real construct of human self aware sapience. It resides in our awareness and hence in our brain. I never said it was immortal, only real. Any entity with human level sapience and self awareness would have a soul, which could be  "grown",  diminished, and even destroyed, while the entity is alive.

You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world..

Be cheerful.

Strive to be happy.

#162    Mr Walker

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 02:35 PM

View Postjoc, on 16 January 2013 - 05:55 PM, said:

Is being Self Aware the same thing as having a Soul?  Is that the definition?
No. Having a soul is a product of  a certain level of self awareness, like imagination. It is not the self awreness itself.

A self aware being knows harmful from creative thoughts and deeds. It knows that it knows this. it has  the capacity  for guilt desire emapthy love and hate it knows it can chose its responses and actions It knows that its choices have consequences for self and for others and thus that it has a great respsonsibilty for every thougth choice and act it takes.

Its soul will grow, develop,or  diminish, and perhaps die, based on the choices it makes in life. A soul probably begins organically at conception and mentally sometime before birth. it continues to grow and evolve until a human dies or is brain damaged beyond the point of recovery eg through trauma or alzheimers Transfer the persons mind to another host and the soul is trnasferred with it. Because the soul is both the immediate mental process of a mind and also the cumulative mental history memory etc of the mind.

Remove all memory from a person, and you have almost completely removed their soul, but it will grow again, perhaps taking a completely differnt path/direction.

You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world..

Be cheerful.

Strive to be happy.

#163    Mr Walker

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 02:49 PM

View PostLiquid Gardens, on 16 January 2013 - 03:02 PM, said:

Perhaps the ability to fool ourselves into believing we have psychic powers, ESP, telekinesis, can speak with the dead is also evidence that we do have those abilities by the same token?
Many of those (and other ) abilities have clear incontrovertible evidences to support them. Yes there are artefacts of our mind and our psychology which predispose us towards some of these beliefs. But in other cases they are real and clear.

CAn you explain a shot glass hovering/suspended in the air for long enough for the original 3 witnesses, who were moving furniture and found it behind a sofa, to call others into the room and observe it, before it fell half a metre to the floor. If you believe this happened and it was not set up by the observers, then it is inexplicable without resorting to "paranormal" explanations. Of course if you dont believe it happened, then there is no need to explain it.

Ive not just talked to my father  who died a few years back but gone back in time and spent time with him in the years before I was born  in the  late 30s and nineteen forties.This could be written off as lucid dreaming except for a few facts.  I went for a ride on hs motorbike and we discussed it.  THEN I talked to my mother and checked out the internet. indeed it was a BSA bantam that dad owned and rode, and  this make and model coincided precisely with the intenet history of  production of this bike.

I also observed the  country dances and halls where dad went dancing and courted my mother. Again my mother, (ninety this year but fit and alert) and research, confirmed their descriptions. locations. and the  bands, music, dances, clothes, conversations, refreshments etc involved
I do this for fun, as a mental challenge and discipline, and to get to know my dad better as a young man, but it is fascinating stuff.

You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world..

Be cheerful.

Strive to be happy.

#164    joc

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 03:29 PM

View PostMr Walker, on 17 January 2013 - 02:35 PM, said:

No. Having a soul is a product of  a certain level of self awareness, like imagination. It is not the self awreness itself.

A self aware being knows harmful from creative thoughts and deeds. It knows that it knows this. it has  the capacity  for guilt desire emapthy love and hate it knows it can chose its responses and actions It knows that its choices have consequences for self and for others and thus that it has a great respsonsibilty for every thougth choice and act it takes.

Its soul will grow, develop,or  diminish, and perhaps die, based on the choices it makes in life. A soul probably begins organically at conception and mentally sometime before birth. it continues to grow and evolve until a human dies or is brain damaged beyond the point of recovery eg through trauma or alzheimers Transfer the persons mind to another host and the soul is trnasferred with it. Because the soul is both the immediate mental process of a mind and also the cumulative mental history memory etc of the mind.

Remove all memory from a person, and you have almost completely removed their soul, but it will grow again, perhaps taking a completely differnt path/direction.
So then, what you are saying is that only beings who are Self Aware can have a soul.  That unless you are Self Aware, that Awareness cannot be transferred to another host upon death?  But if Self Awareness is not the soul, then it is a function of the brain is it not?  And what you are saying is that if a brain (i.e. animal brain) doesn't function to the point of Self Awareness, then the 'soul' is not produced by that brain?  In other words, (sorry, I'm just trying to get my head around this) the soul is the by-product of the human brain...and unless a brain is functioning at that level, then....I'm sorry, I just don't get how the brain creates the soul.

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#165    J. K.

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 03:39 PM

View PostMr Walker, on 17 January 2013 - 02:35 PM, said:

No. Having a soul is a product of  a certain level of self awareness, like imagination. It is not the self awreness itself.

...
Remove all memory from a person, and you have almost completely removed their soul, but it will grow again, perhaps taking a completely differnt path/direction.

Mr. Walker, how are  you defining "soul"?

1.  The personality of an individual (mind, will, emotions)
2.  The spiritual component of a person which communicates with God.
3.  The combination of the previous two.
4.  Or .... ?

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