The soul and the brain

Okay so I’m a book nerd so I follow some book people on YouTube, which includes a current book reviewer who gets a boatload of free books in the mail everyday. He makes videos of him opening the mail, of which include mostly new or not yet released books. One thing though is that he is a very strong and outspoken atheist, and I’m am a Christian so as you can imagine we disagree on many issues of religion. Another interesting issue is that he, who has read every well known classical philosophy book probably twice, hates philosophy and thinks it’s a load of garbage.
Today he got Bart Ehrman’s new book in the mail and went for a rant about the notion of the soul. I have my own thoughts of how I would respond but I thought it would be interesting to see how others (Christian and non Christian alike) would respond to his claims. Start the video at the 22:10 mark to the end.

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@O_wretched_man Hey Isaiah - interesting video. The first thing I would say is that this fellow is practicing a very severe form of reductionism. Yes, we are physical creatures and meddling with our brains does indeed impact our abilities to reason, but that does not mean that we do not have an immaterial soul/spirit. We can be both creatures and more than creatures. We are higher than the animals and yet lower than the angels—that is part of the mystery of being humans made in God’s image.

I found the following Veritas forum discussion on this topic interesting. I liked the Christian fellow, though I don’t know if his Biblical understanding of the soul is accurate, because he acknowledge that the immaterial part of us is not something you can measure scientifically—because it is not material… And in that sense there is a mystery here that we really cannot solve merely by deduction. But we can know the reality of the spirit/soul because God’s Spirit testifies with our spirit that we are sons and daughters of the King with an eternal inheritance!

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I just watched this video which argues that Idealism is a better alternative than dualism. It’s an interesting idea but I’d have to look into it some more.


@O_wretched_man I haven’t studied it deeply, but it feels like idealism blurs the distinction between the Creator and the creation and also denies the physicality of our existence. It feels like we have a spectrum of views like this:


And both idealism and physicalism are reductionistic (both monistic).


However, I also think, if this chart is correct, that all of these views are talking about matter and mind. In contrast, the Bible talks about body and spirit. So I think it’s almost a separate kind of a discussion, though I am not versed in the area.