Soul Searching

In the presumptuous practice which is honored as theology, there is repeated discussion regarding “soul”–that part of each person’s being which is said to be immortal and separable from the matter body at the occurrence of physical death. This is regarded in religious theory to be man’s spiritual relationship with the creative power which is commonly personified as “God.” The theological concept of soul, unfortunately, provides little in the way of any instructive or satisfying means for contemplating this elusive part of our being.

The word “soul” is nonetheless used freely in theological speculations, and yet when seekers press for specifics as to what constitutes one’s soul answers remain vague. Generally the explanation avers that soul is the spiritual nature of an individual in relationship to God. What constitutes “spirit,” unfortunately, also remains inadequately defined, which gives theological speculators freehand to manipulate the mystified. By the typically vague theological proposition the soul/spirit is erroneously assumed to retain identical senses of happiness or misery, which conveniently allows the God merchants to guide their “flocks” through exercises of threat-and-promise tactics (damned or saved). In that version of what constitutes the soul, that elusive part of one’s being sounds suspiciously like one’s ego.

Primitive cultures, as well as classical Egyptian and Greek cultures, envisaged the soul as being comparable to some especially refined or ethereal substance such as breath or as ether. To the Egyptians that which we refer to as soul was known a Ba, and they considered Ba to be the essence of a person which has eternal existence after death. In their theory the Ba was closely associated with the Ka, i.e. each person’s double (energy pattern). Together with the Ab, the heart, these were regarded as the three most important elements in the physical and perceptive life of humans. Not understood by them was the organ of the brain, by which personal associations are determined in life. Thus the Ab was more highly valued than the brain, for it was thought that expressions of desire, courage, lust, wisdom, disposition, etc. were expressed by the heart.

To the ancient Hebrews the soul seems to have been vaguely identified with the creative principle of life which is embodied in living creatures, and this interpretation is honored throughout most of the Hebrew scriptures. Seeking to ease the vagueness of what constitutes the soul it was theorized as being the principle or vehicle of life of each individual, human or animal. So the”soul” was hypothesized as a substance, quality or efficient consciousness in general. In Hebrew Scriptures “spirit” was thus linked with, but considered distinctive from the soul. In this theory spirit was reworked as the principal feature of one’ higher–or divine–capacities and activities.

Christian thought regarding the spiritual nature of the human soul was shaped largely by “saint” Augustine (353-430 CE) who theorized soul existence as much from Greek philosophy as from any religious enlightenment. The theory he advanced as to what constitutes the soul was that it was of a simple, immaterial and mystical quality which is present within one’s being. It is this indistinct and unfocused concept of soul which has remained in scholastic Christian philosophy into present times. We have Augustine to thank also for doctrines concerning sin, divine grace, divine sovereignty, and predestination which have held an important place in the Roman Catholic and Protestant theology.

The concept of “soul” in theological speculation still hinges on the fact that the theory helps numb the fear of death. There is an inevitable catch in this speculative theological practice, however, which is the premise that a price is expected for saving what is professed to be the immortal soul, and that price is that seekers must follow a particular man-concocted faith system. The inevitable question is inescapable–just what is that immortal part to saved from? Theological sales propaganda has the audacity to claim that the soul must be saved from the fiery pits of hell and the eternal suffering which is allegedly doled out by an omniscient, loving Creator for a soul having goofed up in one brief fling at mortal life!

As is often the case in the speculative exercises practiced as religion, there is an intuitive recognition of some creative energy process, but that spark of intuition routinely flounders upon the experience of our temporary matter form. Fortunately, if man is not constrained with some self-imposed unyielding cult-code of belief he can learn to evolve into his higher potential. However, organized faith systems have the bad habit of teaching everyone to pass judgment upon everything and everyone who do not follow their restrictive, self-serving counseling. Hatred is thus continually spawned from such a discriminatory practice. That behavioral “guidance” springs from a deliberate refusal to acknowledge that diversity and variety is the second major law of Creation. But faulty religious instruction does not necessarily mean that the part of our being which is referred to as “soul” is only theological wishful thinking.

There is indeed the non-material criterion within everything which is made manifest as matter-life, and that fact of creative power which is present within all life is neatly summed up in Albert Einstein’s formula E=mc2. That simple formula is verification that any matter-form is actually an energy composite. And all forms of energy have the inherent nature of transformation, so in fact it does not cease to exist. Every energy-matter form radiates with an identifying energy frequency which becomes identifiable by reason of its interaction with the creative patterns in which it is a part. Thus an energy frequency, which is called “soul,” can be said to correspond to the energy frequency by which the identity of anything is maintained within the creative activity of infinity. In other words, Soul, like consciousness, is the continuing awareness of self.

And since personal identity is distinguishable only through its interactions with the creative forces around it, every incident in a person’s material experience actually does impose consequences upon that identity. At each dimension of a soul’s creative involvement and evolution every action which it imposes continues to have a reaction. That is not godly retribution; it is just the basic principle of energy in motion–or the minor law of energy in action–what goes around comes around.

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