Any evidence for the soul?

Is there any scientific, psychological or philosophical evidence outside of the Bible for the soul? I truly believe we all have a soul, but it would be neat if there was any secular evidence out there for it.

There used to be the ‘21 grams’ theory, that the soul weighs exactly 21 grams, which should have been proven when weighing persons when they were dying, however this is not accepted as proven.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Duncan_MacDougall_(doctor

The evidence of the spiritual world is seen when it manifests itself visibly. I know some pretty well grounded people, highly successful, who have encountered it once.

Naturally if one claims it doesn’t exist, then declares any observations of it to be false, one can then ask “Is there any evidence” however its a flawed question.

The most solid evidence is the fact that scientists still have no clue where intelligence and free will comes from. We know that our brain is what enables us to think, but that does not explain why humans can grasp abstract concepts, why they can have intelligence, and why they can make decisions not based on physical instinct or impulse.

There is no answer to the question, “Why don’t humans act just like animals, or vice versa?”

The intelligence of a living being can be measured by the size of the brain relative to the size of the creature’s body. However, this does nothing to help explain why a human, who might have a smaller brain relative to his body than some other animal, can be so much more intelligent than that animal.

Furthermore, doctors have often observed that the “will to live” has a great impact on a patient’s ability to survive a terrible disease. Somehow that person is able to shape their body’s ability to fight disease with their mind, if they have hope for the future.

There is not direct, physical evidence for a soul. However, there is definitely an unexplainable void in the knowledge of science, which cannot in any way explain just how a human’s mind functions, and what the difference is between life and death.

Are you thinking? If so, then yes

About the brain size comment. Einstein donated his brain to science and when they removed it, they discovered it was smaller than average, but more developed in certain regions.

Don’t have much time right now, but I would recommend looking into qualia. I know there is a wiki article on it.

Is there any evidence for parent-child bonds or emotions? Yet, we know they exist.

It’s not uniquely human though - news.discovery.com/animals/whales-dolphins/dolphins-smarter-brain-function.htm

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:thumbsup:

The first thing, of course, is to know the definition of “soul”.
In a very general sense, a soul is the principle of life – it is what is makes inanimate matter be “alive”. (Thus, we speak of not only human souls, but also animal souls and vegetative souls. Granted, there are differences between human souls and the other 2, but that’s a separate topic.)

Anyway, everyone can **see (scientifically, psychologically, and philosophically) that there is a difference between a live human body and a dead human body. That IS **secular evidence!!! And you don’t need a microscope to see it.

The evidence for the soul is apriori. If we were simply a continiously changing set of chemical signals affecting various parts of the brain then why do we feel love or anger or sadness. The Bible shows that God himself felt anger and jealousy and love. Are we to beleive that our Father has synapses and chemical reactions??
I hope you can see now how silly that would be.

:thumbsup:

There are no souls other than Humans. A carrot or a rock or a stick or a Labrador or an ape has no soul. You only have to look at your pet to understand it is empty and has nothing of humanity in it.

As I said, the difference between a human soul and vegetative and animal souls is a separate topic. And it would sidetrack this post to get into that topic. If you want to go into it further, would you open another thread - maybe titled “What is the difference between human souls and animal and vegetative souls?” or “Do animals and vegetables have souls?” You can either post it in this forum or the philosophy forum. I’ll be watching for it.

The Wikipedia link does not work.

However, if it is the famous experiment in 1907, I wouldn’t give it too much credence. How did they know it was not just the weight of the air leaving the collapsed lungs?

ICXC NIKA.

I’ve never head anything about vegetative souls, but as I understand it, one of the most important differences between human and animal souls is that human souls are immortal but animal souls aren’t

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Duncan_MacDougall_(doctor)

Fixed the link for anyone interested. He forgot to include the closing parenthesis in the tag

Philosophy:
I think there are a lot of arguments in philosophy of the mind for the soul. (of course the matter is debated).
Some philosophers deny a soul (since they are materialists) but this denial causes more problems than it solves (actually it solves nothing at all)

An interesting book on the subject is ‘Philosophy of Mind’ by Edward Feser.
Also Alvin Platinga, James Ross (see: www3.nd.edu/~afreddos/courses/43151/ross-immateriality.pdf), Popper and others argued for a soul or at least an immaterial mind.

Science:
Science, intending here natural sciences, are so constructed to deal with the material world only.
There are a lot of things in neuroscience that appear clearly inesplicable by pure materialism, but science itself cannot say anything about anything immaterial, since it’s well beyong it’s scope.

The ‘21 grams’ thing is bogus (ought to be if the soul is not material :smiley: ) anyway I think it was debunked…

Psychology:
Well psychology deals with the mind, but I think different psychologists take different approaches. Some are materialists, so they deal with the ‘mind’ but believe it’s not real and only the brain is real and others take a more immaterial approach.

Psychology is a very ‘fuzzy’ science. It deals with relationship between behaviors and events, mindsets and other things and although there are a lot of ‘agreements’ there is also a lot of disagreement on many things in the field.
Anyway I am not an expert in psychology so someone else who is more knowledgeable might tell you more.

In order to seek evidence for a soul, one must qualify what exactly is a soul.

Ummm… what? God doesn’t not have emotions in the same sense that we have them, especially not jealousy.

God doesn’t change.

This is a thread on the RF forums by one of the more prolific members. I think it is explained pretty well.

reasonablefaith.org/forums/choose-your-own-topic/why-naturalism-fails-as-worldview-6020266.0.html

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