Reading Philosophy

Apr 16, 2006 16:27 # 42545

jael *** mindlessly drivels...

The heart, the mind and the soul.

I shall warn you before you read this that its random thoughts of my head playing about at the moment and I shall not be held responsible if it doesn't make too much sense. But ... hear me out if you will.

The Heart.

The heart is a hollow, muscular organ in vertebrates responsible for pumping blood through the blood vessels by repeated, rhythmic contractions

- wikipedia -

So we agree that its just a muscle that pumps blood to all the parts of your body. It's the most crucial part of your body, your whole life and being depends on it.

Then why exaclty is it that when you hurt emotionally, you have this excruciating pain in your chest like some one is squeezing your heart.

It's said by a friend of mine (and correct me if I'm wrong) that when your upset or depressed that your heart will be faster than it normally does which causes the pain. But then again it will just make your heart beat faster. Where exaclty is that pain coming from?

Yes, you do hurt. It's like some one is crunching your soul inside.

Soul.

Now here is the other thing.

What exaclty is your soul? Yes I do know and have had lengthy talks about what is good for your soul, your feeling. Spirituality and happiness of one person.

BUT Still we cant see the soul, its something that is given that everyone has one. And to my knowledge, the soul is a part of your concience. It will keep you doing right from wrong. The soul is what makes you feel.

Soul food Sundays they call it. Where the family gathers around and actually makes and effort to come together.

Food for the soul they call it. When an act of unselfishness is performed. When mercy is given to someone who does/doesnt deserve it.

So when people say "Oh, that man has no soul" translates, to that man is heartless. No not literally speaking that he doesnt have a heart. He would obviously be dead if he didnt. The real meaning behind that would be that he has killed his capability for feeling - for him or for others.
The man doesn't feel, cannot perform acts of mercy or unselfshiness and therefore has no soul, has no heart.

So would he feel that pain that you get when your depressed? The crunching lonelyness where literally your chests hurts?

But Then - (i'm Backtracking - forgive me) if your heart is just a muscle that pumps blood, and your soul is something of no substancial existance. Then where exactly is it from where you feel?

Is it your mind?
But your mind knows and works in logic. The heart doesn't.

So does that mean that we have two minds. One that is goverened by logic and one that is governed by feeling. Where does the heart come into play in all this if its all the minds doing.

And if it is all the minds doing of feeling then we as humans should know that right from wrong, love from hate. Know when to love a person or when not to when the love isnt returned. Yet we fail do to so.

Where is that point in us that our brains fail to listen to the logic and truth in front of us and we are helpless to our feelings, governed by it if you will.

Still if you think of it more, if we are purely goverened by logic then we would practically be machines. What seperates us from it is our feelings.

So my question to you would be this.

Where exaclty is it that we feel from? Heart? Mind? Or Soul?

I do have more ideas, but when I can put it down without people reading and saying "?!?....what?" I will wait and listen to what you have to say.

Thank you for reading my mindless babble.. =)

*insert something profound/witty/humorous here*

This post was edited by jael on Apr 16, 2006.

Apr 16, 2006 16:48 # 42548

cyborg *** replies...

Re: The heart, the mind and the soul.

?% | 1

its something that is given that everyone has one.

I don't see that as a given. Far from it infact.

And to my knowledge, the soul is a part of your concience.

What's wrong with the brain doing this?

It will keep you doing right from wrong. The soul is what makes you feel.

What's wrong with the brain doing this?

But your mind knows and works in logic. The heart doesn't.

Emotions have their own logic. The mind cannot be considered a single centre but rather the consequence of several brain areas operating in parallel with their own particular influences summing to the phenomena we regard as consciousness.

And if it is all the minds doing of feeling then we as humans should know that right from wrong, love from hate. Know when to love a person or when not to when the love isnt returned. Yet we fail do to so.

That doesn't follow from your premise that the mind is logical.

Logical systems can only produce totally rational conclusions when all information is known about a problem domain. Clearly it cannot be said that in most situations regarding social interactions we ever have anything approaching a complete knowledge about the problem we may be engaging in.

Besides your premise of a mind as logical, or rather rational as you are using the word, isn't borne out by reality.

Where exaclty is it that we feel from? Heart? Mind? Or Soul?

Brain.

Souls don't have any evidence for their existence. Do you ascribe souls to every other animal? If not why not? The soul seems to be a totally unnecessary fiction conjured up by those who wish to explain where precisely the non-physical essenece that's going to occupy an afterlife comes from.

What people call the mind is the sum total of the interaction of neurons in the brain. It is an abstraction.

The heart, as you state, is just a pump. It is the secondary effects of stress and such that have led to people mistakenly ascribing it as the centre of emotions. Science shows us better. (Never trust your subjective conclusions). People used to do the same thing for the kidneys and other organs, but people don't think about them in this way anymore. That the heart persists is lamentable.

Apr 17, 2006 07:08 # 42553

sofista * replies...

Re: The heart, the mind and the soul.

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-Souls don't have any evidence for their existence

Also you can`t prove that it doesn't exist... as an open minded person i try to see the reality from every posible angle so i think is up to us decide if it exist or don`t.

-The mind cannot be considered a single centre but rather the consequence of several brain areas operating in parallel with their own particular influences summing to the phenomena we regard as consciousness.

good answer... it was hard to get it but i think you are right in the basic cientific way of thinking that i see you are using to explain logics and reality... but see beyon that... try to get the abstract of the things they art, they love, philosofy isn't just logical and racional... it's also a door to our mind... or whatever you call it... so be open minded not just a cold computer that thinks that was the whole true in theyr data base...

And to Everyone... JUST TRY TO BE HAPPY

Apr 17, 2006 13:31 # 42555

cyborg *** replies...

Re: The heart, the mind and the soul.

?% | 1

Also you can`t prove that it doesn't exist...

Can't prove a lot of things don't exist. I wonder just how many of them you'd be open minded about?

as an open minded person i try to see the reality from every posible angle so i think is up to us decide if it exist or don`t.

Well no, it's not up to us to decide whether or not souls exist.

We do not get to dictate reality.

good answer... it was hard to get it but i think you are right in the basic cientific way of thinking that i see you are using to explain logics and reality... but see beyon that... try to get the abstract of the things they art, they love, philosofy isn't just logical and racional...

You seem to be taking the rather rash conclusion that it is not possible to have abstract thought and irrational behaviour arising from a system that is purely chemical.

Who's not being open minded now? Your description of 'cold computer' seems to imply that you are emotionally attached to your viewpoint - it is important to you that things such as love and art and philsophy come from some special immaterial and magical location that cannot be described by science.

You may choose to deny reality if you wish. Billions do.

Apr 18, 2006 02:38 # 42556

sofista * replies...

Re: The heart, the mind and the soul.

?% | 1

-We do not get to dictate reality.

Before dictate reality we have to know what reality is… and what is reality? I think that everything is up to us… and I really admire your way of thinking because is very concrete and you can easily prove it… so that’s your reality of things as you keep thinking this way, because we can change in a blink of an eye (I had change a lot of times, I don’t know if you had) and how can I prove that reality is different to everyone?… because what is the reality for a deaf person (born this way)… his reality don’t include sounds even when our does… this is as equal for a blind person or someone in this kind of situation… also by our believes as the religion… let’s say that God doesn’t exist… even then the effect placebo still exist and a lot of times biological miracles are made… so by this I think that reality is totally personal not general as a total true.

-Can't prove a lot of things don't exist. I wonder just how many of them you'd be open minded about?

I think almost to everything (sorry if it was a sarcastic question) from faries to religion... everything is welcome... i just decide what should matter in my life... like... is there exist faries... then what??? my life continiues... is jesus was married??? then what??? he keep as holy as he was (not going to get deep in that)if sould exist or not??? then what... i know there is something that we can call by a lot of way in us. if soul dies??? then i will try to live happy like buddha in life... this really matter to me... so i decide what matter or what doesn't...

-You seem to be taking the rather rash conclusion that it is not possible to have abstract thought and irrational behaviour arising from a system that is purely chemical. Who's not being open minded now? Your description of 'cold computer' seems to imply that you are emotionally attached to your viewpoint - it is important to you that things such as love and art and philsophy come from some special immaterial and magical location that cannot be described by science.

ok don't get angry... try to be happy ^_^...
Sure i'm attached to my viewpoint because is mine and personal and sorry if i attaked your viewpoint of your reality (as i call it) but i prefer just as you said "that things such as love and art and philsophy come from some special immaterial and magical location that cannot be described by science" ok not magical... but immaterial i do... i don´t know why but as i just said... if it is just chemical proces in my brain??? it still exist and is unique so... i love to have this complex biological action on my brain.

And to everyone:
"Don`t be too busy hoping for the future that you miss the present"

Apr 19, 2006 00:59 # 42568

jael *** replies...

Re: The heart, the mind and the soul.

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I don't see that as a given. Far from it infact.

Explain.

Because as I see it, and I do believe, that rocks, plants, humans and animals have souls. There must be a reason why Native Americans, South Americans and great philosophers such as Herclitus, Permanides only to name a few have stated that there is something above us.

Again it is also in us to conform to authority to belive in something bigger than us. Two thirds of the world believe in a higher being, whether you want to call it Shiva, Christ, Buddha or Gaya.
If they are deluding themselves then I'd rather be deluding myself as well because if I didn't and this is the only life I had, there is no soul, there is no god, there hell or even heaven, then I would come to your village kill your kids, steal your money and burn your village down to the ground and maybe, choose to keep you alive so I can choose to do it again. I need not have to live to aspire to be a better person, neither do I have to fear heaven or hell.

What's wrong with the brain doing this?

Your brain doesn't feel, it has neurons, and synapses it will allow us to think and reason. And we know how bad it can get.
Think about it, A man steels bread and butter. Would you send him to jail. Cause the brain says he's a criminal and he commited a crime. Then what if you find out that after sending him to jail, you killed his three children he was providing for.
Is that still worth putting the brain in charge.

Emotions have their own logic. The mind cannot be considered a single centre but rather the consequence of several brain areas operating in parallel with their own particular influences summing to the phenomena we regard as consciousness.

Explains to me how can an emotion have their own logic.

Emotions are concluding product to situations and circumstances.
Watching some one die, like say in a war or something you would feel sad. There is no logical reason why you would feel sad as that person ins't related to you in any particular way but you would feel sad.

If you dont agree with me there. Please watch any of the following and tell me if it didn't stir up emotions.

Schindler's List
The Pianist
The thin red line
The green mile.

To your other part.

What you said about about certain parts of the brain summing up a characteristic of a person, is forgive my language my friend - is bullshit.

You are talking of Fruedian times when they believed that a certain part of the brain made a person a criminal, or a for sex, for for happiness.

What we know understand after extensive research is that, only physical aspects of your body are controlled by certain parts of the brain. Sight as we all know is located at the back of our head on the lower side.

How can you say that when you feel happy its the lower side its the top left corner of your brain.
And when you feel sad its the lower left corner.

Souls don't have any evidence for their existence. Do you ascribe souls to every other animal? If not why not? The soul seems to be a totally unnecessary fiction conjured up by those who wish to explain where precisely the non-physical essenece that's going to occupy an afterlife comes from.

I’m a guessing you are one of those people who rely on perceptions of your senses. What you touch, see, hear, taste and smell is what is real to you.
Have you ever heard of the phrase

“what you see is what you get?”

Well, this is to do with sight. Sight is just a visual sense that allows us to identify objects, near and far in our consciousness, but the world we are allowed to see is merely an illusion though we all share the same internal perception of the world outside of us which makes this particular sense so well developed that when we see an object we already know what is feels like.
The truth is we see through our brains. Not our eyes.
I can give you a whole scientific theory how this works but I'm sure I dont have to.

So... that phrase that I said.

What you see is what you get.... think about it ... its merely an illusion.

comming back to the point about souls.

I do believe in souls. I do believe that there is something binding all of us together, I do believe that we are more than mere flesh and bones.
SO when you say that the soul doesnt have any evidence of existance, I can say what you see is merely an illusion, all because you cannot touch it or see it doesn't mean its not there.

The heart, as you state, is just a pump. It is the secondary effects of stress and such that have led to people mistakenly ascribing it as the centre of emotions. Science shows us better. (Never trust your subjective conclusions). People used to do the same thing for the kidneys and other organs, but people don't think about them in this way anymore. That the heart persists is lamentable.

I agree with you there. The heart is just a pump...

Then why.... why does your chest hurt when you are emotionally in pain. There really is physical pain there, the brain cannot just conjure this kind of pain up...

why do you feel pain right there in the middle of your chest a little toward the left when you know for a fact, that its just a muscle that pumps blood....

*insert something profound/witty/humorous here*

This post was edited by jael on Apr 19, 2006.

Apr 19, 2006 04:30 # 42572

cyborg *** replies...

Re: The heart, the mind and the soul.

Because as I see it, and I do believe, that rocks, plants, humans and animals have souls.

You believe *rocks* have souls? I could just about stretch to seeing why people would believe the others but believing rocks have an immaterial spirit responsible for its properties?

There must be a reason why Native Americans, South Americans and great philosophers such as Herclitus, Permanides only to name a few have stated that there is something above us.

That reason doesn't necessarially have to do with an actual soul does it though?

People have believe a whole slew of things that were very popular and also wrong.

Again it is also in us to conform to authority to belive in something bigger than us. Two thirds of the world believe in a higher being, whether you want to call it Shiva, Christ, Buddha or Gaya.

And again the fact that we may (at least some of us, I feel no such compunction) desire to believe in higher powers doesn't mean higher powers actually exist. If anything the great diversity of dieties would seem to indicate that if people do indeed have this desire they create their own gods to fill the gap, i.e. no actual dieties required.

If they are deluding themselves then I'd rather be deluding myself as well because if I didn't and this is the only life I had, there is no soul, there is no god, there hell or even heaven, then I would come to your village kill your kids, steal your money and burn your village down to the ground and maybe, choose to keep you alive so I can choose to do it again.

That is a rather tired ethical argument: that there can be no morality with divinity.

Not least because you might well be compelled to do PRECISELY those things if you have the right set of religious beliefs (check out the Old Testament sometime eh?).

In reality people have strong social cohesion instincts that limit such destructive behaviour. We have empathy towards other people that balances our ability to inflict pain on others. There are costs to your proposed plan as well - people tend to fight back.

Your brain doesn't feel,

If I prick you, do not neurons fire in response to pain signals in your brain?

Think about it, A man steels bread and butter. Would you send him to jail. Cause the brain says he's a criminal and he commited a crime. Then what if you find out that after sending him to jail, you killed his three children he was providing for.
Is that still worth putting the brain in charge.

Try to understand this: your brain does lots of different things! You have a rather simplistic view of brain = logic. In the moral situation you describe if I have an sympathetic emotional response to the situation where do you think it comes from? There are specific centres of the brain that deal specifically with this type of empathatic emotional response - i.e. that is being able to understand the emotions of others. Clearly this part of the brain can affect other parts and hence change any moral decision I may reach.

Explains to me how can an emotion have their own logic.

Emotions are concluding product to situations and circumstances.

You answered your own question.

Watching some one die, like say in a war or something you would feel sad. There is no logical reason why you would feel sad as that person ins't related to you in any particular way but you would feel sad.

Sure, there's a perfectly logical reason - you have an empathetic reaction. Normal functional people have the ability to relate to the emotional states of other people and react to them. It's a vital part of achieving social cohesion.

What you said about about certain parts of the brain summing up a characteristic of a person, is forgive my language my friend - is bullshit.

Sure that would be, that's phrenology. However it's not what I said.

I said there are different parts of your brain which operate independently of each other, operating in parallel, with the combined output being regarded as the phenomena we perceive as being conscious. This view is certainly supported by some of the research on stroke victims and how very definite brain regions can cause drastic changes in personality and perception when damaged. These effects include: increased religiousness, inability to differentiate faces, inability to differentiate animals, inability to grasp concept of a mirror image and phantom limbs.

What we know understand after extensive research is that, only physical aspects of your body are controlled by certain parts of the brain.

That I'm afraid is just not true. I have no idea where you got that from. MRIs can show quite positive results for experiments realted to emotional stimuli. Under your assumption of a immaterial emotional component one should expect absolutely nothing - that would certainly be a stunning scientific discovery. It is however one that is not forthcoming.

I’m a guessing you are one of those people who rely on perceptions of your senses.

No. That would be relying on equpiment that has been shown to be deceptive and inaccurate. I prefer to rely on numerous such pieces of equipment working to negate their errors through collaboration.

What you touch, see, hear, taste and smell is what is real to you.

What else, precisely, could be?

The truth is we see through our brains. Not our eyes.

No, we see through our eyes, our brains interpret the signals to construct a model from this information.

What you see is what you get.... think about it ... its merely an illusion.

No, it's a model. An illusion is something else.

I do believe in souls. I do believe that there is something binding all of us together, I do believe that we are more than mere flesh and bones.

Because mere flesh and bones are inadequate to describe all that we see or because you really don't want them to be adequate?

SO when you say that the soul doesnt have any evidence of existance, I can say what you see is merely an illusion, all because you cannot touch it or see it doesn't mean its not there.

So I will simply say again; many things that cannot be shown to exist, any you would not care to accept?

Then why.... why does your chest hurt when you are emotionally in pain.

It's a SECONDARY effect.

Jeeze.

the brain cannot just conjure this kind of pain up...

Wrong. So very wrong.

Apr 19, 2006 08:25 # 42575

null throws in his two cents...

Re: The heart, the mind and the soul.

I don't see that as a given. Far from it infact.

I'm an atheist and man of science, and I still believe that people have a soul. To me 'soul' is an abstractum derived from somebody's personality (which is an abstractum itself). It not having a physical presence doesn't mean the idea of it is dead wrong.

When life hands you a lemon, that's 40% of your RDA of vitamin C taken care of.

Apr 19, 2006 12:49 # 42576

cyborg *** replies...

Re: The heart, the mind and the soul.

I'm an atheist and man of science, and I still believe that people have a soul. To me 'soul' is an abstractum derived from somebody's personality (which is an abstractum itself). It not having a physical presence doesn't mean the idea of it is dead wrong.

Yes but if you go around talking about souls most people aren't going to think you're talking about some abstraction for personality. This doesn't really mean you believe people have a soul - you can just ascribe certain things to the concept of a soul. You can't say you believe or not in an abstraction - since abstractions don't require belief!

Yes you may well understand that the common parlance uses a lot of metaphors that you do not consider literally but in this discussion here precision is necessary. If people are talking about souls as having a concrete existence and as having a definitive influence on the physical world I'm going to question that.

Apr 19, 2006 15:24 # 42577

null replies...

Re: The heart, the mind and the soul.

If people are talking about souls as having a concrete existence and as having a definitive influence on the physical world I'm going to question that.

Well that's your right. But you can't prove your point any more than those people can prove theirs, so it all boils down to a question of personal beliefs.

When life hands you a lemon, that's 40% of your RDA of vitamin C taken care of.

Apr 26, 2006 17:41 # 42644

Hawkeye *** replies...

Re: The heart, the mind and the soul.

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Null said it best, I think. Since we cannot distingush, much less prove the existance of a mind and soul, this debate becomes a opinion fest in which saying rocks have souls is just as correct as saying there is no such thing as a soul.

Cyborg is quite the scientist. And science has its place and purpose, but I should remind you, Cyborg, that a man with an unprovable idea is a dreamer. That same man with that same idea that has been proven is a good scientist. In other words, it is popular opinion to deny the existence of anything which cannot be proven. However, ideas are proven fact all the time, which makes "popular opinion" a fallible one.

And I would like to add:

If they are deluding themselves then I'd rather be deluding myself as well because if I didn't and this is the only life I had, there is no soul, there is no god, there hell or even heaven, then I would come to your village kill your kids, steal your money and burn your village down to the ground and maybe, choose to keep you alive so I can choose to do it again. I need not have to live to aspire to be a better person, neither do I have to fear heaven or hell.

It is human nature to try to make sense out of things. It is, afterall, what has allowed humans to survive through evolution. So our belief in a higher being could simply be our mechanism of making sense out of existence. It also brings justice to morality, or else we would all ask ourselves "what is so important about doing the right thing?" And everyone on this planet who has ever believed in doing the right thing has an answer to this question. The absence of an answer is too disturbing for people to comprehend.

However, that isn't to say there isn't a higher being, just that believing in a higher being has a purpose of its own meant to fulfill very human needs.

If the world should blow itself up,the last audible voice would be an expert saying it can't be done

This post was edited by Hawkeye on Apr 26, 2006.

Apr 26, 2006 18:16 # 42646

cyborg *** replies...

Re: The heart, the mind and the soul.

In other words, it is popular opinion to deny the existence of anything which cannot be proven.

It's not popular opinion. Far from it in fact - the popular opinion seems to be to believe in a multitude of things that are not provable.

However, ideas are proven fact all the time, which makes "popular opinion" a fallible one.

Ideas that are not open to scientific inquiry are unlikely to be proven fact - since the whole point about science is that it provides a structure to enable just that.

The progress civilization made on answering questions on the nature of reality by merely talking to each other about their introspective beliefs? Zero.

Unless you'd care to cite an idea proven fact by another method?

However, that isn't to say there isn't a higher being, just that believing in a higher being has a purpose of its own meant to fulfill very human needs.

Well yes but my entire point is that if we're to expect to actually make any serious progress when we ask questions such as these it is no good to simply engage in idle speculation and pick the ideas we prefer the most. If we actually want answers we have to follow the evidence where it goes. If that happens to lead to something we might not like then that's really too bad; burying our heads in the sand will not change reality.

Apr 27, 2006 16:53 # 42662

Hawkeye *** replies...

Re: The heart, the mind and the soul.

?% | 1

Well yes but my entire point is that if we're to expect to actually make any serious progress when we ask questions such as these it is no good to simply engage in idle speculation and pick the ideas we prefer the most. If we actually want answers we have to follow the evidence where it goes. If that happens to lead to something we might not like then that's really too bad; burying our heads in the sand will not change reality.

Nobody was suggesting we would take which idea we like best and accept it as fact, Cyborg. My point was only that during the days in which people believed the world was flat, the one who believed it was round was the only one to test that theory. Everyone else took it for granted that it was the case.

Bottlenecking opinion into only that which is fact is fine and good for practical purposes, but you don't introduce new ideas by outright denial of things which are not yet fact.

By your logic, a soul cannot exist because we have no evidence to support its existence. However, isn't it also an equally viable theory that souls exist and we simply do not have the evidence to prove it? The fact is there is no evidence for or against either argument, so either is perfectly viable. If you prefer to state they do not exist, that is your opinion, but at that point, you would be "picking the idea you prefer the most."

Until that point, shooting down people's arguments because no evidence exists exists is just as invalid as believing one side of the coin and insisting it is true.

If the world should blow itself up,the last audible voice would be an expert saying it can't be done

Apr 27, 2006 17:56 # 42664

cyborg *** replies...

Re: The heart, the mind and the soul.

?% | 1

My point was only that during the days in which people believed the world was flat, the one who believed it was round was the only one to test that theory. Everyone else took it for granted that it was the case.

Well that's not so. Generally people who assumed the world was flat did so because they perceived it as being so - it's a naive view. Sea-faring civilizations like the Greeks must have realised at some point that the fact that you can see ships climbing over the horizon means the Earth isn't flat. And then geometry did the rest to seal that deal.

Bottlenecking opinion into only that which is fact is fine and good for practical purposes, but you don't introduce new ideas by outright denial of things which are not yet fact.

Denying an idea kind of requires it has been introduced - or rather created. Besides I wasn't engaging in denying ideas, simply stating why commonly hold ones of a mystic and ancient notion just don't stand up in the light of modern science. Denying an idea is a silly thing to engage in. Pointing out the flaws in an idea is another matter altogether.

By your logic, a soul cannot exist because we have no evidence to support its existence.

No, by my logic I retain the right to assume souls don't exist until shown otherwise.

However, isn't it also an equally viable theory that souls exist and we simply do not have the evidence to prove it?

No. That's a hypothesis. And it's the sort of hypothetical structure that leads to all sorts of fallacy.

The fact is there is no evidence for or against either argument, so either is perfectly viable.

There is no evidence against a lot of things. Like our world leaders being shapeshifting lizard aliens that are part of a globalist giant conspiracy.

The point here being that if you make a claim it's not my responsibility to give it any consideration unless you're going to at least attempt to back it up with evidence. Otherwise it's merely groupthink and personal preference as to whether or not I'm a crazy alien lizard man or the second coming.

If you prefer to state they do not exist, that is your opinion, but at that point, you would be "picking the idea you prefer the most."

Well I've certainly stated a cogent reason for their non-existence - namely they are superflous to requirements for explaining human behaviour, this being backed up by the fact we now know far more about the operation of the brain now. As the OP stated we know the heart is a pump, not the centre of emotion. We should not trust our subjective introspection on this matter because the conclusions can clearly be shown to be wrong!

That's not picking an idea I most prefer - it's pointing out the flaws in proposing a immaterial soul. I've already stated that the idea of using soul as an abstraction for behaviour doesn't count here - that isn't proposing the existence of something extra to explain things, just a label for existing mechanisms. I don't have a problem with that.

Until that point, shooting down people's arguments because no evidence exists exists is just as invalid as believing one side of the coin and insisting it is true.

No, it's totaly valid. An argument without evidence, no matter how perfectly constructed, is worthless.

The most perfectly constructed argument for alien lizard men doesn't make them real!

Apr 27, 2006 20:36 # 42670

Hawkeye *** replies...

Re: The heart, the mind and the soul.

Well that's not so. Generally people who assumed the world was flat did so because they perceived it as being so - it's a naive view. Sea-faring civilizations like the Greeks must have realised at some point that the fact that you can see ships climbing over the horizon means the Earth isn't flat. And then geometry did the rest to seal that deal.

Sea-farers were the ones who believed in giant squid, mermaids, and sirens out in the vast oceans. They weren't the type to be scientific about it. Not to mention, believe it or not, you can't see the curvature of the earth from the middle of the ocean.

It was Columbus who finally suggested that the world was round, and I don't think it was easily accepted as fact.

Denying an idea kind of requires it has been introduced - or rather created.

Stating that souls exist is not an idea?

Denying an idea is a silly thing to engage in. Pointing out the flaws in an idea is another matter altogether.

Where I come from, pointing out flaws is denying an idea. Ideas are conjectures from premises which lead to a conclusion. You cannot deny the conclusion if you accept the premises. Therefore, if you want to disprove an idea, you disprove the premises which make up an idea.

There is no evidence against a lot of things. Like our world leaders being shapeshifting lizard aliens that are part of a globalist giant conspiracy.

Actually, I'd think we'd be able to test that. However, presuming we couldn't, it would be a viable theory as well. That's the main difference between you and I. According to me, a theory is viable if it is not disproven. To you, a theory is viable if it is not disproven and it is accepted by modern scientists.

Now while I'm not going to run around claiming that our world leaders are shapeshifting lizard aliens part of a globalist giant conspiracy, for all intents and purposes, it *could* be correct.

No, it's totaly valid. An argument without evidence, no matter how perfectly constructed, is worthless.

What evidence is there which supports your claim that there are no souls? If there isn't any evidence, is your claim not worthless as well? By that logic, any theory which is for or against the existence of god, angels, aliens, parallel dimensions, etc. is entirely worthless. I get the impression you feel that believing that such things do not exist is not a worthless theory. I could be wrong, but then why are you debating for a 'worthless' argument?

If the world should blow itself up,the last audible voice would be an expert saying it can't be done

Apr 27, 2006 21:08 # 42671

cyborg *** replies...

Re: The heart, the mind and the soul.

Sea-farers were the ones who believed in giant squid, mermaids, and sirens out in the vast oceans. They weren't the type to be scientific about it.

Sure. But nobody ever said that because you might some right observations you can't make a whole load of wrong ones.

Not to mention, believe it or not, you can't see the curvature of the earth from the middle of the ocean.

Well, yes you can - that is the point. If you watch a far off ship coming towards you the first thing you see is the mast. The ship would appear to rise out of the sea. The conclusion? The Earth ain't flat.

It was Columbus who finally suggested that the world was round, and I don't think it was easily accepted as fact.

That I'm afriad is pure mythology. The idea that somehow Columbus was pioneering a great new theory of a spherical Earth and had to fight tooth and nail against the ignorant masses who laughed at him and persuade the aristocracy of Spain to fund his adventure to find a Western route to India is just wrong. The Greeks not only proposed a spherical Earth long before that they even utilised geometry and some handy obelisks to get a fairly accurate calculation for the circumference of the Earth.

Stating that souls exist is not an idea?

No, I'm pointing out that it's illogical to say being skeptical prevents the creation of new ideas if the ideas have to be presented before skepticism can ensue.

I cannot be skeptical of non-ideas.

Where I come from, pointing out flaws is denying an idea.

No, denying an idea would be refusing to acknowledge its existence. That would be silly.

Ideas are conjectures from premises which lead to a conclusion. You cannot deny the conclusion if you accept the premises.

Well firstly I can deny a conclusion based on conjecture since that term firmly implies an incomplete reasoning process. Conjecture is inference from incomplete evidence, as such any conclusion may very well not be sound.

Therefore, if you want to disprove an idea, you disprove the premises which make up an idea.

And if the premises are just made up without any evidence I can safely dismiss the idea without any problem.

Creating a self-contained argument is all very well but if you want to imply that the argument applies to the real world you can't just say the argument is sound and graft it on. That is engaging in ontology.

Actually, I'd think we'd be able to test that.

You propose how and I'll tell you why you can't ad infinitum.

You see when you can just make stuff up you can also make up more stuff for why the previous stuff can't be tested. This is an essential ability for anyone who wants to proclaim the ridiculous because actual inquiry may be substantially damaging.

However, presuming we couldn't, it would be a viable theory as well.

No. To be a viable theory requires more than just a hypothesis. That is the whole point. You want to make theory synomonous with guess and I'm trying to place a little more rigor into this.

According to me, a theory is viable if it is not disproven. To you, a theory is viable if it is not disproven and it is accepted by modern scientists.

Wrong. According to me a theory has to be a hypothesis that has some evidence for its truth and the ability to predict the existence of other evidence that does not contradict it. That is also what a theory is according to science.

According to you a theory is a wild guess and every wild guess is as valid as the last. That method of inquiry has, as I've pointed out, been less than sucessful at producing any results.

Now while I'm not going to run around claiming that our world leaders are shapeshifting lizard aliens part of a globalist giant conspiracy, for all intents and purposes, it *could* be correct.

Yes, so again I'm left to point out that the unprovable ideas you do choose to use to affect your behaviour are merely the ones you personally find tenable.

What evidence is there which supports your claim that there are no souls?

There is no evidence for souls. They are not necessary entities.

If there isn't any evidence, is your claim not worthless as well?

How would you propose I go about gathering evidence to show something doesn't exist?

The reason why the claimer has the burden of evidence is that generally it is not possible to have evidence for the non-existence of things, since they tend not to leave non-evidence around for people to find.

By that logic, any theory which is for or against the existence of god, angels, aliens, parallel dimensions, etc. is entirely worthless.

I've not met one yet that isn't. The only difference between the arguments is that some accept that they are only hypotheses and others pretend to be proofs - generally in the case of the supernatural.

For example there are no serious scientific alien theories. There are hypotheses on the existence of extra-terresteral life and attempts to gather evidence but anyone claiming to have met them or otherwise should be met with extreme skepticism.

I get the impression you feel that believing that such things do not exist is not a worthless theory.

Actually I take the rather sensible standpoint of assuming non-existence until shown otherwise. And then I like to point out the folly of placing imaginary constructs as placeholder explanations for natural phenomena.

I could be wrong, but then why are you debating for a 'worthless' argument?

Not entirely sure what your point is.


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