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Heart, Mind, Soul, Spirit

by Kim Packard
“If cucumbers experience life in the same way humans dream, it might be said that cucumbers have souls; only, perhaps, they are always dreaming and do not have conscious thoughts.” (Kim, June 2011) Wikipedia link Soul University of Adelaide Student Radio Footnote to Plato- Wittgenstein and language games (“soul”, “existence”, anti-realism debate) According to Wittgenstein, a soul is not a physical thing and cannot be talked about on naturalist terms (6:00 to 15:00) while a question like “Why am I here?” is an existential one grappling with value and meaning and cannot be satisfied by a scientific causal answer such as the Big Bang and the… Read more

“If cucumbers experience life in the same way humans dream, it might be said that cucumbers have souls; only, perhaps, they are always dreaming and do not have conscious thoughts.” (Kim, June 2011)

Wikipedia link Soul

University of Adelaide Student Radio Footnote to Plato- Wittgenstein and language games (“soul”, “existence”, anti-realism debate)

According to Wittgenstein, a soul is not a physical thing and cannot be talked about on naturalist terms (6:00 to 15:00) while a question like “Why am I here?” is an existential one grappling with value and meaning and cannot be satisfied by a scientific causal answer such as the Big Bang and the evolution of the species…

Anyway, crisscrossing Plato’s concept of tripartite soul and MacLean’s triune brain theory suggests that the “souls” animating living things possess a physical dimension.

1) head— wisdom— thinking— neocortex, cluster of brain structures involved in advanced cognition, including planning, modeling and simulation (Plato’s rational soul? Philosopher kings…)
2) heart- benevolence— feeling – limbic brain, associated with social and nurturing behaviors, mutual reciprocity, and other behaviors and affects that arose during the age of the mammals (Plato’s appetitive soul? worker class of merchants and laborers…)
3) gut- courage- willing — reptilian brain, related to territoriality, ritual behavior and other “reptile” behaviors (Plato’s spirited soul? Associated with soldiers and enforcers…)

NB: “All recent studies based on paleontological data or comparative anatomy evidences strongly suggest that the neocortex was already present in the earliest emerging mammals. In addition, although non-mammals do not have a neocortex in the true sense (that is, a structure comprising part of the forebrain roof, or pallium, consisting of six characteristic layers of neurons), they nevertheless sometimes possess well developed pallial areas. While these areas lack the characteristic six neocortical layers, and sometimes lack lamination entirely, they make neuroantomical connections with other brain structures like those made by neocortex and mediate similar functions such as perception, learning and memory, decision making, motor control, conceptual thinking, and tool use. Scientifically, the triune brain hypothesis was based on what is now recognized as a faulty interpretation of the anatomical organization and evolution of the vertebrate brain. The idea holds little favor in current neuroscience.”

Poems:

A mind of winter—The Snow Man by Wallace Stevens
Farthest reaches of the mind— Universe by Steven Schnur
Nobody knows where the wind comes from—Wind on the Hill by A. A. Milne
Soul floating near the door where a blue ox wings by—Theories of the Soul by Karen An-Hwei Lee
I hate the phrase “inner life”— Schwinn by Matthew Zapruder
More than a word a nail in the soul— Mexican Is Not a Noun by Francisco X. Alarcón
In a split second the Dreams by Wislawaa Szymborska
The ecstasy of soul and senses Correspondances by Charles Baudelaire

外物:
目徹為明,耳徹為聰,鼻徹為顫,口徹為甘,心徹為知,知徹為德。凡道不欲壅,壅則哽,哽而不止則跈,跈則眾害生。物之有知者恃息,其不殷,非天之罪。天之穿之,日夜無降,人則顧塞其竇。胞有重閬,心有天遊。室無空虛,則婦姑勃谿;心無天遊,則六鑿相攘。大林丘山之善於人也,亦神者不勝。
What comes from Without:
’It is the penetrating eye that gives clear vision, the acute ear that gives quick hearing, the discriminating nose that gives discernment of odours, the practised mouth that gives the enjoyment of flavours, the active mind that acquires knowledge, and the far-reaching knowledge that constitutes virtue. In no case does the connexion with what is without like to be obstructed; obstruction produces stoppage; stoppage, continuing without intermission, arrests all progress; and with this all injurious effects spring up. The knowledge of all creatures depends on their breathing. But if their breath be not abundant, it is not the fault of Heaven, which tries to penetrate them with it, day and night without ceasing; but men notwithstanding shut their pores against it. The womb encloses a large and empty space; the heart has its spontaneous and enjoyable movements. If their apartment be not roomy, wife and mother-in-law will be bickering; if the heart have not its spontaneous and enjoyable movements, the six faculties of perception will be in mutual collision. That the great forests, the heights and hills, are pleasant to men, is because their spirits cannot overcome (those distracting influences).

“昔者莊周夢為蝴蝶,栩栩然蝴蝶也,自喻適志與,不知周也。俄然覺,則蘧蘧然周也。不知周之夢為蝴蝶與,蝴蝶之夢為周與?周與蝴蝶則必有分矣。此之謂物化。”

Once Zhuangzi dreamt he was a butterfly, a butterfly flitting and fluttering around, happy with himself and doing as he pleased. He didn’t know he was Zhuangzi. Suddenly he woke up and there he was, solid and unmistakable Zhuangzi. But he didn’t know if he was Zhuangzi who had dreamt he was a butterfly, or a butterfly dreaming he was Zhuangzi.


Wizard of Oz revealed “In Baum’s original book, the Tin Man explains that he had once been human, but that the Wicked Witch of the East had put a curse on his axe. With each swing of his axe he had chopped off a part of his body. The only person who could help him was the tinsmith, who replaced the severed parts of his body with artificial limbs made out of tin. Eventually his entire body was made of tin. The fate of the Tin Man suggests the dehumanization of industrial labor.”
“Dorothy’s journey is our own spiritual quest. To Darren John Main, Dorothy represents the soul. Samuel Bousky argues that Dorothy represents the spirit while Toto represents the physical body. Dorothy’s name is short for Dorothea, which means “Divine Gift” in Greek. Together these two characters represent the whole of humanity. Bousky likens Dorothy’s quest to Job’s in the Old Testament. Job was accompanied by three companions, and through some linguistic manipulation, Bousky equates their names with the characters accompanying Dorothy on the yellow brick road."

The explanation of The Spirit of the Beehive by Linda C. Ehrlich

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