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Re: [neoplatonism] Soul/Body Problem...

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  • Melanie B. Mineo
    ... Perhaps, though, it is that simple! To this I would answer, think of yourself as a younger man, and the views you held at that time. Are they the same as
    Message 1 of 17 , Nov 4, 2005
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      On Friday, November 4, 2005, at 04:35 AM, Michael Chase wrote:

      >
      > Le 4 nov. 05, à 04:49, Melanie B. Mineo a écrit :

      > It just seems too simple to me to say : oh yeah, Plato was an Orphic
      > when he was a kid,
      > so he didn't like the body : then he changed his mind when he grew up
      > and realized the body and the physical world in general are OK after
      > all.

      Perhaps, though, it is that simple! To this I would answer, think of
      yourself as a younger man, and the views you held at that time. Are
      they the same as the seasoned views you have now? This brings to mind
      Malcolm X, and the profound shift in view he acknowledged toward the
      end of his life.

      >> Which 
      >> Plotinus then takes up, and makes his own, Toke? Marilynn, the word 
      >> 'field' is reminiscent of Sheldrake, isn't it, but I guess he's not
      >> the 
      >> only one who's used this notion, as Curt points out. Mead's
      >> subtle-body 
      >> doctrine, speaks to an energy field also, yes?  The notion of it not 
      >> being material, but physical, Stephen & Edward, is an interesting 
      >> notion.
      >
      > M.C. I, for one, don't understand the difference between physical and
      > material : can you elaborate ?


      Whether you can agree with the entire theory is another issue - but
      here is the main distinction between 'physical' and 'material'

      http://www.iscid.org/encyclopedia/Physicalism

      "Physicalism is to be differentiated from materialism because
      materialism is committed to a very particular physical theory in which
      matter serves as the fundamental entity. Physicalism, while committed
      to physical monism, is not committed to a particular view of the
      fundamental physical stuff and recognizes that the basic level of
      reality could be non-material (e.g. energy, strings, fields)."

      Ervin Lazlo, TOWARD A PHYSICAL FOUNDATION FOR PSI PHENOMENA
      http://www.goertzel.org/dynapsyc/1996/ervin.html


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Caio Rossi
      The question, Michael, is what the soul is. To vulgar dualism nowadays (Hollywood s, for instance) it s a fluid that can be exchanged, stored, etc. To
      Message 2 of 17 , Nov 4, 2005
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        The question, Michael, is what the soul is. To vulgar dualism nowadays
        (Hollywood's, for instance) it's a "fluid" that can be exchanged,
        stored, etc. To platonists and aristotelians alike one can say it was
        the data "behind" a given entity. That's why I compared it to what
        happens in the virtual world nowadays: a character in a computer game,
        for instance, is the manifestation on the screen of a certain set of
        data regarding its shape, color, position, etc. Shape, color,
        position, etc are Aristotle's categories and the set of data defining
        the parameters for that "virtual body", though not it, but its
        "mathemathical counterpart", is its algorithm, its "soul". Therefore
        they couldn't say the soul is in the body (although Hollywood can),
        but that the body is "in" the soul (that is, the soul is the
        ontological bases of the body, not the opposite).

        Hope that helps better now! :-)

        Hugs,

        Caio

        On 11/4/05, Malcolm Schosha <malcolmschosha@...> wrote:
        > --- In neoplatonism@yahoogroups.com, Michael Chase <goya@u...> wrote:
        > >
        > >
        > > Le 4 nov. 05, à 13:30, Caio Rossi a écrit :
        > >
        > > > Hello,
        > > >
        > > > Using different references in order to help understanding:
        > > >
        > > > The body (and by that I mean the psyche too, or, in Buddhist
        > terms,
        > > > all the skandhas) is "in" the soul because this is the "set of
        > data"
        > > > (an individual's "potential possibilities", or algorithm, in
        > > > mathematical terms) which the (Aristotelian) categories which
        > comprise
        > > > the body stem from.
        > >
        > > M.C. Um, if you say so.
        > > >
        > > > Saying the soul is "in" the body is no more precise than saying
        > that
        > > > the algorithm that inFORMS an animated gif is in the animated gif
        > > > itself. Its algorithm (the animated gif's "soul") is
        > ontologically
        > > > "above" its manifestation in a website, therefore not
        > exactly "in" it.
        > > >
        > > > Hope that helps,
        > >
        > > M.C. Many thanks for your efforts, but I have to confess I'm now
        > > considerably more confused than I was before.
        > >
        > >Best wishes,
        > > Michael Chase
        >
        > .......................
        >
        > Interestingly, Stoicism does not allow this dualism between body and
        > soul, but the human form, the soul, and God are all considered to be
        > material. The excerpt I have copied below gives what seems to me a
        > fairly good summery of Stoic materialism (which has nothing in common
        > with the word materialism as it now commonly used).
        >
        > Malcolm Schosha
        >
        > ........................
        >
        > http://www.iep.utm.edu/s/stoicism.htm
        >
        > 3. Stoic Physics
        >
        > The fundamental proposition of the Stoic physics is that "nothing
        > incorporeal exists." This materialism coheres with the sense-
        > impression orientation of their doctrine of knowledge. Plato placed
        > knowledge in thought, and reality, therefore, in the ideal form. The
        > Stoics, however, place knowledge in physical sensation, and reality --
        > what is known by the senses -- is matter. All things, they said,
        > even the soul, even God himself, are material and nothing more than
        > material. This belief they based upon two main considerations.
        > Firstly, the unity of the world demands it. The world is one, and
        > must issue from one principle. We must have a monism. The idealism of
        > Plato resolved itself into a futile struggle involving a dualism
        > between matter and thought. Since the gulf cannot be bridged from the
        > side of ideal realm of the forms, we must take our stand on matter,
        > and reduce mind to it. Secondly, body and soul, God and the world,
        > are pairs which act and react upon one another. The body, for
        > example, produces thoughts (sense impressions) in the soul, the soul
        > produces movements in the body. This would be impossible if both were
        > not of the same substance. The corporeal cannot act on the
        > incorporeal, nor the incorporeal on the corporeal. There is no point
        > of contact. Hence all must be equally corporeal.
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        > Yahoo! Groups Links
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >


        --
        http://evanessencias.blogspot.com
      • jensav55
        ... Well, it should also be borne in mind that even Orphics , whatever one takes this disputed term to mean, are not committed to the position that the body
        Message 3 of 17 , Nov 7, 2005
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          --- In neoplatonism@yahoogroups.com, Michael Chase <goya@u...> wrote:
          >
          > It just seems too
          > simple to me to say : oh yeah, Plato was an Orphic when he was a kid,
          > so he didn't like the body : then he changed his mind when he grew up
          > and realized the body and the physical world in general are OK after
          > all.

          Well, it should also be borne in mind that even "Orphics", whatever one takes this disputed
          term to mean, are not committed to the position that the body and the physical world are
          inherently evil, but that embodied beings are in need of redemption or salvation, and
          hence that the terms of their embodiment are problematic in some sense.

          This is not the same as believing that embodiment is evil, or that one's 'soma', were one to
          understand it properly and not mistake its nature, might not cease to be a 'sema'.


          Edward Butler
        • Michael Chase
          ... M.C. This is an interesting distinction, but I m not sure whether it works in detail. Are there actually any Orphic texts that state this distinction? It
          Message 4 of 17 , Nov 7, 2005
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            Le 7 nov. 05, à 19:55, jensav55 a écrit :

            > --- In neoplatonism@yahoogroups.com, Michael Chase <goya@u...> wrote:
            > >
            > >  It just seems too
            > > simple to me to say : oh yeah, Plato was an Orphic when he was a
            > kid,
            > > so he didn't like the body : then he changed his mind when he grew
            > up
            > > and realized the body and the physical world in general are OK after
            > > all.
            >
            > Well, it should also be borne in mind that even "Orphics", whatever
            > one takes this disputed
            > term to mean, are not committed to the position that the body and the
            > physical world are
            > inherently evil, but that embodied beings are in need of redemption
            > or salvation,

            M.C. This is an interesting distinction, but I'm not sure whether it
            works in detail. Are there actually any Orphic texts that state this
            distinction? It seems to me that while the doctrine that embodied
            beings are in need of redemption or salvation need not *entail* that
            the body and the physical world are inherently evil, it doesn't exclude
            this last possiblity either. Why, one wonders, would it be urgent to
            flee from this world (Theaetetus 176b) unless it were in some since
            evil, if not "inherently", then at least as far as the effects it has
            on our psychism are concerned?


            > and
            > hence that the terms of their embodiment are problematic in some
            > sense.
            >
            > This is not the same as believing that embodiment is evil, or that
            > one's 'soma', were one to
            > understand it properly and not mistake its nature, might not cease to
            > be a 'sema'.

            M.C. Perhaps. And yet, there are some texts which suggest quite
            strongly that the "Orphic" goal is not simply some change of
            perspective, enabling us to look on the brighter side of being
            incarnated, but the literal *cessation* of the process of incarnation.

            Best, Mike.
            >
            >
            >
            >
            Michael Chase
            (goya@...)
            CNRS UPR 76
            7, rue Guy Moquet
            Villejuif 94801
            France
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