My formal training is within traditional Western science. That discipline does not allow
for the existence of a soul or spirit that is separate
from the brain. The reason for this view is that
there is no empirical evidence proving that such
things exist. Indeed, according to this monistic
(oneness) view, the mind is nothing more than the
subjective awareness we have when the brain functions.
If the brain functions normally, the mind will be
normal. If the brain functions abnormally, the mind
will be abnormal.”
The Greek word “Psyche” translates equally
to mind and soul. It implies that something spiritual
does exist apart from the brain. This dualistic view
underlies most spiritual philosophies and religions.
It relies on faith, rather than empirical evidence,
to support the existence of a soul or spirit, including
a great Spirit or God.
Traditional Eastern philosophy and medicine invoke the
concept that all living things possess energy (often
called Chi) within them. The awareness and channelling
of this energy constitutes the basis of physical, spiritual
and psychological well-being.
From this, it can be seen that all living things are
part of the same oneness. This very Eastern way of looking
at things requires that we respect all others, not because
we would want to be treated that way ourselves (classical
Western Ethics – i.e., The Golden rule) but because
we are all part of the same thing. Each human is part
of every other human. Acts that diminish the individual,
diminish the entire species.
If the “mind” is the concomitant of neural
function, why would it not also be true that the “life
force”, though an energy, is the natural and physical
concomitant of the totality of life’s activities.
In other words, the “Chi”, which would then
include the “mind”, need not exist as a
“dualistic” entity, outside of the body,
but as a natural consequence of life itself. Moreover,
even as other natural forces affect each other and can
coexist and mingle with each other, so too, each individual’s
life force is capable of mingling with those of other