proof from logic alone of the immortal nature of the human soul
#11
(05-11-2012, 07:43 PM)per_passionem_eius Wrote: Parmandur, it sounds like Plato thought that forms were the cause of all things. We know that's not true, unless it can be said that God is the form of all forms, or something. Maybe it can, I don't know. But I think Aristotle perfected this part of Plato's teaching, I'm just not sure exactly how.

Aristotle believed forms cause things.  Of the four kinds of causality, formal is the most important in determining what something actually is. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Formal_cause#Formal_cause

Pilgrim is right, Christian thinkers from the ancient times on down (even St. Thomas Aquinas, in one of his more Platonist moments) see the forms as existing in God's mind.
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#12
(05-12-2012, 02:51 PM)Parmandur Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 12:37 PM)yablabo Wrote:
(05-11-2012, 04:57 PM)per_passionem_eius Wrote: I'm having trouble understanding the proof from reason alone, that is, apart from divine revelation, that the human soul is immortal. I understand and accept that the 2 powers we have that animals do not, are intellect and free will, and that these are spiritual powers. But it seems that the conclusion that our souls cannot die is a step I can't make without the help of divine revelation. It seems that it can be made without divine revelation. Can anyone help me understand this? Thank you in advance.

(Edited to replace the word 'logic' with the word 'reason')

There is no convincing proof based upon reason apart from divine revelation that the human soul is immortal.  That's in fact a fallacy which comes from dividing revealed truth from philosophy.  Only a person who knows by certain evidence observed in the natural world that God will keep his soul in existence after his bodily death could then posit the proof that one can come to the immortality of the human soul from reason alone.  There is no such certain evidence in nature that shows that human souls do not simply return from the potential from whence they came at bodily death, like the soul of an animal.  It is necessary to have the revelation of the One who knows on this subject (i.e., God) in order to hold the immortality of the soul with certainty.  Therefore, divine revelation is necessary in this pursuit...

-- Nicole

Most people who don't believe in Revelation still believe their souls go on after death.  If people can conceive of life after death outside of revealed truth, then obviously it is possible to do so.  To say otherwise is base sophistry.

I wrote several things above, bless your heart, which include:

*no convincing proof
*no certain evidence in nature

I did not say that a person could not conceive of life after death nor that those who reject divine revelation don't believe their souls go on after death.

I said most explicitly "It is necessary to have the revelation of the One who knows on this subject (i.e., God) in order to hold the immortality of the soul with certainty.  Therefore, divine revelation is necessary in this pursuit..."

I am not saying that a person could not hold the immortality of the soul as a probability, due to the good reason he has to believe it (spiritual quality transcending the corporal life of any individual man) combined with the good reason he has not to believe it (he has neither a credible witness nor personal observation). 

-- Nicole
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#13
(05-12-2012, 03:12 PM)yablabo Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 02:51 PM)Parmandur Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 12:37 PM)yablabo Wrote:
(05-11-2012, 04:57 PM)per_passionem_eius Wrote: I'm having trouble understanding the proof from reason alone, that is, apart from divine revelation, that the human soul is immortal. I understand and accept that the 2 powers we have that animals do not, are intellect and free will, and that these are spiritual powers. But it seems that the conclusion that our souls cannot die is a step I can't make without the help of divine revelation. It seems that it can be made without divine revelation. Can anyone help me understand this? Thank you in advance.

(Edited to replace the word 'logic' with the word 'reason')

There is no convincing proof based upon reason apart from divine revelation that the human soul is immortal.  That's in fact a fallacy which comes from dividing revealed truth from philosophy.  Only a person who knows by certain evidence observed in the natural world that God will keep his soul in existence after his bodily death could then posit the proof that one can come to the immortality of the human soul from reason alone.  There is no such certain evidence in nature that shows that human souls do not simply return from the potential from whence they came at bodily death, like the soul of an animal.  It is necessary to have the revelation of the One who knows on this subject (i.e., God) in order to hold the immortality of the soul with certainty.  Therefore, divine revelation is necessary in this pursuit...

-- Nicole

Most people who don't believe in Revelation still believe their souls go on after death.  If people can conceive of life after death outside of revealed truth, then obviously it is possible to do so.  To say otherwise is base sophistry.

I wrote several things above, bless your heart, which include:

*no convincing proof
*no certain evidence in nature

I did not say that a person could not conceive of life after death nor that those who reject divine revelation don't believe their souls go on after death.

I said most explicitly "It is necessary to have the revelation of the One who knows on this subject (i.e., God) in order to hold the immortality of the soul with certainty.  Therefore, divine revelation is necessary in this pursuit..."

I am not saying that a person could not hold the immortality of the soul as a probability, due to the good reason he has to believe it (spiritual quality transcending the corporal life of any individual man) combined with the good reason he has not to believe it (he has neither a credible witness nor personal observation). 

-- Nicole

Both of those points are clearly wrong, just based on interacting with people every day.  Most people, outside of revelation, are convinced by certain proof found in nature that their souls will go on.  Plato is the norm, not an exception, and he was not uncertain about the reality of immortality of the soul.
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#14
(05-12-2012, 03:36 PM)Parmandur Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 03:12 PM)yablabo Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 02:51 PM)Parmandur Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 12:37 PM)yablabo Wrote:
(05-11-2012, 04:57 PM)per_passionem_eius Wrote: I'm having trouble understanding the proof from reason alone, that is, apart from divine revelation, that the human soul is immortal. I understand and accept that the 2 powers we have that animals do not, are intellect and free will, and that these are spiritual powers. But it seems that the conclusion that our souls cannot die is a step I can't make without the help of divine revelation. It seems that it can be made without divine revelation. Can anyone help me understand this? Thank you in advance.

(Edited to replace the word 'logic' with the word 'reason')

There is no convincing proof based upon reason apart from divine revelation that the human soul is immortal.  That's in fact a fallacy which comes from dividing revealed truth from philosophy.  Only a person who knows by certain evidence observed in the natural world that God will keep his soul in existence after his bodily death could then posit the proof that one can come to the immortality of the human soul from reason alone.  There is no such certain evidence in nature that shows that human souls do not simply return from the potential from whence they came at bodily death, like the soul of an animal.  It is necessary to have the revelation of the One who knows on this subject (i.e., God) in order to hold the immortality of the soul with certainty.  Therefore, divine revelation is necessary in this pursuit...

-- Nicole

Most people who don't believe in Revelation still believe their souls go on after death.  If people can conceive of life after death outside of revealed truth, then obviously it is possible to do so.  To say otherwise is base sophistry.

I wrote several things above, bless your heart, which include:

*no convincing proof
*no certain evidence in nature

I did not say that a person could not conceive of life after death nor that those who reject divine revelation don't believe their souls go on after death.

I said most explicitly "It is necessary to have the revelation of the One who knows on this subject (i.e., God) in order to hold the immortality of the soul with certainty.  Therefore, divine revelation is necessary in this pursuit..."

I am not saying that a person could not hold the immortality of the soul as a probability, due to the good reason he has to believe it (spiritual quality transcending the corporal life of any individual man) combined with the good reason he has not to believe it (he has neither a credible witness nor personal observation). 

-- Nicole

Both of those points are clearly wrong, just based on interacting with people every day.  Most people, outside of revelation, are convinced by certain proof found in nature that their souls will go on.  Plato is the norm, not an exception, and he was not uncertain about the reality of immortality of the soul.

Well, say what you will...and I hope you're happy with it.  Take care.

-- Nicole
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#15
(05-12-2012, 04:10 PM)yablabo Wrote: Well, say what you will...and I hope you're happy with it.  Take care.

-- Nicole

Thanks, I am happier with the truth than with a lie, with reality rather than a fideistic abstraction.  :cheers:
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#16
(05-12-2012, 02:47 PM)Parmandur Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 11:09 AM)per_passionem_eius Wrote: OK, I do understand that the human soul is spiritual, I just don't understand why something spiritual can't die, as I've said. How is it that the spiritual soul does not have parts, which could separate and cause death?

The number 4 cannot die.  This particular set of 4 things might be added to, or subtracted from, divided or multiplied, and cease to be 4.  But 4 itself, it goes on.

(I'm sort of feeling my way around in the dark, so thank you for bearing with me.)

OK. But isn't the number 4 is a form without matter? I, on the other hand, am a form (my soul) and matter (my body). The number 4 doesn't have a body that will die, so it's easy for me to see how it can't die. But what about my soul?!
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#17
For what it's worth, Hume agrees with yablabo/Nicole:

http://www.qcc.cuny.edu/socialsciences/p...y-Soul.htm

Not claiming that Hume is the last word on this subject (nor is anyone else), but he does agree with her. Also, in my personal experience, everyone I know who believes in the immortality of the soul also believes in revealed religion. Every atheist I know believes that the sould dies with the body. This would also support her point.
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#18
(05-12-2012, 04:10 PM)yablabo Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 03:36 PM)Parmandur Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 03:12 PM)yablabo Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 02:51 PM)Parmandur Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 12:37 PM)yablabo Wrote:
(05-11-2012, 04:57 PM)per_passionem_eius Wrote: I'm having trouble understanding the proof from reason alone, that is, apart from divine revelation, that the human soul is immortal. I understand and accept that the 2 powers we have that animals do not, are intellect and free will, and that these are spiritual powers. But it seems that the conclusion that our souls cannot die is a step I can't make without the help of divine revelation. It seems that it can be made without divine revelation. Can anyone help me understand this? Thank you in advance.

(Edited to replace the word 'logic' with the word 'reason')

There is no convincing proof based upon reason apart from divine revelation that the human soul is immortal.  That's in fact a fallacy which comes from dividing revealed truth from philosophy.  Only a person who knows by certain evidence observed in the natural world that God will keep his soul in existence after his bodily death could then posit the proof that one can come to the immortality of the human soul from reason alone.  There is no such certain evidence in nature that shows that human souls do not simply return from the potential from whence they came at bodily death, like the soul of an animal.  It is necessary to have the revelation of the One who knows on this subject (i.e., God) in order to hold the immortality of the soul with certainty.  Therefore, divine revelation is necessary in this pursuit...

-- Nicole

Most people who don't believe in Revelation still believe their souls go on after death.  If people can conceive of life after death outside of revealed truth, then obviously it is possible to do so.  To say otherwise is base sophistry.

I wrote several things above, bless your heart, which include:

*no convincing proof
*no certain evidence in nature

I did not say that a person could not conceive of life after death nor that those who reject divine revelation don't believe their souls go on after death.

I said most explicitly "It is necessary to have the revelation of the One who knows on this subject (i.e., God) in order to hold the immortality of the soul with certainty.  Therefore, divine revelation is necessary in this pursuit..."

I am not saying that a person could not hold the immortality of the soul as a probability, due to the good reason he has to believe it (spiritual quality transcending the corporal life of any individual man) combined with the good reason he has not to believe it (he has neither a credible witness nor personal observation). 

-- Nicole

Both of those points are clearly wrong, just based on interacting with people every day.  Most people, outside of revelation, are convinced by certain proof found in nature that their souls will go on.  Plato is the norm, not an exception, and he was not uncertain about the reality of immortality of the soul.

Well, say what you will...and I hope you're happy with it.  Take care.

-- Nicole

I wonder if I'm expecting too much. The blurb on the back of the book I'm reading says
Quote:(the book College Apologetics carries) the reader through a series of logic gates that begin with the proof of the existence of God and follow logically through ... Not only is the book's logic ironclad...

Maybe this blurb is a bit over the top. What do you think?
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#19
(05-12-2012, 07:02 PM)per_passionem_eius Wrote: I wonder if I'm expecting too much. The blurb on the back of the book I'm reading says
Quote:(the book College Apologetics carries) the reader through a series of logic gates that begin with the proof of the existence of God and follow logically through ... Not only is the book's logic ironclad...

Maybe this blurb is a bit over the top. What do you think?

I know this question was not addressed to me, but it caught my eye, because I have that same book, and remember seeing that blurb on the cover. It sounds over the top to me -- I mean, if the logic is really that ironclad, it should be a simple matter to convert the whole world to Catholicism in short order. So either it's not ironclad, or it's so subtle that most people won't get it -- or most people are so obstinate that they don't even try to get it. In any case, I would be curious to hear your reaction after you've finished the book. I haven't read it yet, and won't get to it for a while (I'm reading other stuff right now).
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#20
Thanks for answering, Grasshopper.

I read the rest of the book, and liked it, but I have little to compare it with, so I don't think I can say how iron-clad the rest of it is. The only part I keep going back to is this part, about the immortal nature of the human soul - the rest seems easier to me.

It seems to require good will on the part of the reader, and it is definitely challenging that way. For example, in the introduction it says basically the reason most people reject the Church is because of the moral teachings, and attachment to sin, not because its teaching lacks reason or clarity.

Maybe it's necessary first to accept the existence of God. I'm just guessing that, since the book argues for this before it argues for the immortal nature of the human soul. Maybe this is what's necessary first, rather than divine revelation, per se.
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