Home > Soul > 2. Soul vs. Spirit



Figure 2. The geon (spirit) surrounding a body gives rise to consciousness. [Source: Wikipedia]

In the Bible, Old Testament was originally written in Hebrew, and New Testament in Greek. The word "soul" was used by English translators for the Hebrew "nephesh" and Greek "psyche". Both actually mean a "living being", that is, a whole conscious person. For instance, in Genesis 2:7,

And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

Notice that the man became a living soul. The above verse tells us that a living being comprises a material body and a spiritual part. The latter is referred to as "breath of life" in Genesis, but it is replaced by "spirit" in Ecclesiastes 12:7.

And the dust returns to the earth as it was, and the spirit returns to God who gave it.

This book will present evidence that the "breath of life" or "spirit" could be a gravitational geon. How a geon gives rise to consciousness is explained in the chapter, The Hard Problem of Consciousness, of another book. This book is focused on the creation of a geon, which may produce two different types of conscious perceptions. The geon created by a healthy brain has normal perception, but a dying brain (more specifically, a brain without oxygen supply) will create a geon with out-of-body experience. In the rest of this book, the word "soul" refers to the spirit (= geon) associated with death. "Mind" is the spirit of a healthy person. Interestingly, the word "spirit" in the Bible also refers to either "soul" or "mind". In Acts 7:59,

While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.”

Here "spirit" = "soul". In the following two verses, "spirit" = "mind".

For who knows a person’s thoughts except the spirit of that person. [1 Corinthians 2:11]

I Daniel was grieved in my spirit in the midst of my body. [Daniel 7:15]