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Are We Possessed by Spirits? Mind/Brain Connection

Printed From: WhyIslam.org
Category: General
Forum Name: InterReligious Dialogue
Forum Discription: Forum for people of various faiths to discuss and inquire about different religions
URL: http://www.whyislam.org/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=28453
Printed Date: 18 April 2014 at 10:06am
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Topic: Are We Possessed by Spirits? Mind/Brain Connection
Posted By: talib84
Subject: Are We Possessed by Spirits? Mind/Brain Connection
Date Posted: 26 October 2011 at 1:37am
I was just reading up about the top 10 unexplained phenomena, and one of them was the connection between mind and body. I began to wonder if people generally believe that our bodies are somehow "possessed" by a spirit that makes all our decisions for us or whether this "spirit" is in our brain and merely the result of neural activity? The spirit, of course, being the true us, the one who directs the body, makes choices, experiences emotions, etc. I was wondering how people of different religions view this relationship.
 
Here is a copy of part of the article I found most interesting:
 
The Body/Mind Connection
Medical science is only beginning to understand the ways in which the mind influences the body. The placebo effect, for example, demonstrates that people can at times cause a relief in medical symptoms or suffering by believing the cures to be effective whether they actually are or not. Using processes only poorly understood, the body's ability to heal itself is far more amazing than anything modern medicine could create.

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"To be sure, Jesus will come and will restore all things. But I tell you, Jesus has already come, and they did not recognize him, but have done to him everything they wished."



Replies:
Posted By: talib84
Date Posted: 26 October 2011 at 1:40am
When you look at the placebo effect, you can't help but wonder if the brain is merely a tool used by some higher part of us that is yet undiscovered. But there just might be very plausible and natural explanations for things that make there seem to be a difference between the mind and the brain.
 
But, out of curiosity, for people of all faiths (even if your religion is not a major or organized religion), what part of us do you believe lives on? What parts of our "mind" won't be carried over into the hereafter with us? Or do you simply believe that once our brain is dead, we're dead?


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"To be sure, Jesus will come and will restore all things. But I tell you, Jesus has already come, and they did not recognize him, but have done to him everything they wished."


Posted By: Francophile
Date Posted: 26 October 2011 at 10:27am
I believe that once our brain is dead, we're dead. I see us as part of the animal kingdom, a little out of the ordinary perhaps, but in no sense containing an 'essence' that will live on after us.
 
For those who hope for reunions with lost loved ones, I wish that were possible.


Posted By: wesley
Date Posted: 26 October 2011 at 11:30am
Spirit is the impersonal life force that animates living creatures. It is not something that lives independent of matter.


Posted By: talib84
Date Posted: 26 October 2011 at 12:14pm

I believe personally that humans have both a ruh and a nafs. The differences between the two are very important. The former is more or less what you describe, Wes -- the active force of the human being. The latter is what makes us unique as individuals, the part that is responsible for sinning.



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"To be sure, Jesus will come and will restore all things. But I tell you, Jesus has already come, and they did not recognize him, but have done to him everything they wished."


Posted By: talib84
Date Posted: 26 October 2011 at 12:31pm
Originally posted by Francophile

I believe that once our brain is dead, we're dead. I see us as part of the animal kingdom, a little out of the ordinary perhaps, but in no sense containing an 'essence' that will live on after us.
 
For those who hope for reunions with lost loved ones, I wish that were possible.
 
I have to say, the more I researched the afterlife along with the Quran/Hadiths, I've actually started to believe as you do with the exception that I do believe that there will be a Judgment Day. I think that when we die, we don't know anything, we die along with our brains, while our ruh (breath of life I guess you can translate it as) returns to God. On the Day of Judgment our bodies are resurrected and the ruh is returned and then we'll be judged.


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"To be sure, Jesus will come and will restore all things. But I tell you, Jesus has already come, and they did not recognize him, but have done to him everything they wished."


Posted By: Perseveranze
Date Posted: 26 October 2011 at 12:37pm

So blessed is Allah , the best of creators. [Quran 23:14]

Originally posted by Francophile

I believe that once our brain is dead, we're dead. I see us as part of the animal kingdom, a little out of the ordinary perhaps, but in no sense containing an 'essence' that will live on after us.
 
For those who hope for reunions with lost loved ones, I wish that were possible.


Wouldn't you be suprised, only time will tell.

"Concerning what are they disputing [ie. God/Last Day/Prophethood etc.]? Concerning the Great News, About which they cannot agree? Verily, they shall soon (come to) know! Verily, verily they shall soon (come to) know!" [Quran 78:1-5]




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Fast Growing Islamic Search

http://www.Searching-Islam.com - www.Searching-Islam.com


Posted By: Francophile
Date Posted: 26 October 2011 at 12:44pm
Did I say I want it to be true? It's just that I cannot believe otherwise. Read "Thanatopsis" and take comfort in the fact that you'll be returning to the earth much of what you've taken from it.
 
As for surprise, if I'm right, you'll be spared that. Your brain will no longer exist.


Posted By: Perseveranze
Date Posted: 26 October 2011 at 1:16pm
Originally posted by Francophile

Did I say I want it to be true? It's just that I cannot believe otherwise. Read "Thanatopsis" and take comfort in the fact that you'll be returning to the earth much of what you've taken from it.
 
As for surprise, if I'm right, you'll be spared that. Your brain will no longer exist.


Sorry, I don't read boring poems.

And like you said, you don't know for sure, whilst I have nothing to lose.

In the end, as the verse above states; the Quran gets the last say. Time will tell.




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Fast Growing Islamic Search

http://www.Searching-Islam.com - www.Searching-Islam.com


Posted By: talib84
Date Posted: 26 October 2011 at 11:40pm

Originally posted by Francophile

As for surprise, if I'm right, you'll be spared that. Your brain will no longer exist.
 
Reminds me of the series finale of the Sopranos, no? Did you see that?


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"To be sure, Jesus will come and will restore all things. But I tell you, Jesus has already come, and they did not recognize him, but have done to him everything they wished."



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