Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Thoughts about life after death and the soul (regarding comments from Sean Carroll and there being no "soul")

 I read an article where professor Sean Carroll pretty much said there is no possible chance of a soul living on after we die.  Link attached below.

There were my rambling thoughts on the article:

I think personally, we are still too young as a species that is self aware to make observations like Sean Carroll has about life after death. The problem is the idea that life is life after death as we know it. The problem actually is what we consider life to be in the first place. For example, Sean Carroll states that we are made of atoms and are bound by the laws of physics, and he's right. But, the deeper question is, why is it that a rock and a brain can weigh the same amount yet a brain can build a ship and a rock is just a stagnant element? Both are made of the same atoms. But, one is considered organic, and the other isn't. So what exactly makes something alive, something an organic element? The problem is, science doesn't know yet. They are assuming clay crystals, from what I've read, but they are still far from understanding how atoms combine to form carbon and other elements to make amino acids and nucleic acids. That leap, from inorganic to organic, is like, how does the saying go, a tornado ripping through a junkyard where parts of a Boeing 747 airplane are randomly scattered about, and the tornado, in its destructive path, whips up the parts and the pieces perfectly fit together to form a complete Boeing 747 plane. The understanding is still so far from understanding that, well, we just don't know yet. I'm sure one day people, scientists, and thinkers will figure out how atoms form to build complex organic systems, but for now, they just don't know, there still is a great gap between the two systems, organic and inorganic. So my point is we still have a very long way to go before we understand how life begin, and what exactly it is, and then there is the complex understanding of how the brain works itself, and deeper still, consciousness and self-awareness. On the idea of what we are, I really like the idea of the Gaia Hypothesis, that all living things are a part of one single self sufficient complex system. But going back to understanding life after death, I think we as a species need to understand life first. But I do believe in some kind of life energy, a life force, and that even a "monocellular ancestor" like Mr. Carroll points out, has it. Isn't all DNA, all living creatures, monocellular included, all from the same gene pool? So if we have a soul, so do they. Weren't we once monocellular ourselves billions of years ago? And even going farther back, didn't we all come from that pure form of energy known as the big bang? But my idea of life after death has more to do with the fact that we do die, and it does end, and there is nothing wrong with that, I wouldn't know it anyways, but with the idea of the conservation of information, we can and will be resurrected in some way shape or form, and that we transcend in this manner, that us, living creatures, are working to keep things in order and grow in our complexity towards the future as the universe's entropy also increases in the future. Life after death is not the transcendence of body, but, of mind, that information that makes us what we are. I wouldn't want an afterlife where my grandmother is old forever, as she has been old to me my whole life. That's a complete universe in which i only live in, but maybe that exists somewhere too.

Are we becoming a Superorganism?

I was watching a bunch of ants working together, collecting food between the cracks of the sidewalk, and I thought to myself, these creatures are like the video I posted a few weeks ago, about ants acting like fluids. And I thought to myself, we, humans, don't act like this, do we? Do we act like lesser elements, like particles bumping into each other and forming little groups, and forming atoms? Will society ever rise up in the ranks of formation and cooperation, and form elements like Hydrogen and Oxygen and form an ocean of water?

What do you think?

I read this article below about cities being an organism, a step above biology. That we are, with our technologies, creating a new species but what exactly would it be? Are city states and welfare states and school systems, and corporations like Coca Cola, or my employer World Wrestling Entertainment, a new type of superorganism?

This might sound ridiculous but I've walked through my building that is a Television Studio, and thought of the layout. On the bottom floor, we have a bunch of hallways that pretty much channel throughout the building, like the muscles in our bodies. Along the top corner of the walls are wires, dozens of bundles of them that are like nerves. The "nerves" lead to the center of the building, which is called Master Control. Master Control is like the heart of the building, where tapes and satellite feeds converge into this one room and television shows and production is "fed" into and out from other external (environmental) locations. The tapes and digital file transfers are like cells and genes, packed with information that Master Control takes in, and then the information is sent to the Edit Rooms, where the show is put together and fine tuned. Also, throughout the building we have pipes and cables that resemble veins and intestines. The rest of the lower floor has other departments. The Television Graphics department (where I work) is where visual art is created, like decorations that an organism would have - hair or fur or eye or skin color - and other aesthetics like clothing and necklaces and other accessories; these are created from the "Mind(s)" decision, which I'll get to in a moment. Other departments like the Music section where songs and music is played and recorded mimic the sounds of animals that communicate for serenading and beauty. There are audio rooms where sounds are created like tidbits of subjective noises like clicks and chirps and squeaks. There are edit rooms where the shows are put together, and the whole package is presented, the whole organism finalized, compiled from all the work mentioned above.

On the second floor, and the highest floor in my building (but much higher in other corporations), are the brains of the show, the minds that make all of the decisions.
What does it all look like to you?