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Do you believe in some form of a soul?  

30 members have voted

  1. 1. Do you believe in some form of a soul?

    • Definitely
      19
    • Maybe, yes
      8
    • Maybe, no
      2
    • Absolutely not
      1


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tianma    2

So it has come to mind the nature of how so many otherkin are appearing, relative to only mere decades ago. This is not necessarily unlike LBGT issues where they're simply more visible, however strikingly so is the case that there is consistency callbacks to past-lives, and I am curious to collect opinions regarding a few key points of consideration regarding a conceptual "soul" (considered here to be an "it" for simplicity, but don't let yourself get bogged down on physical notions or metaphors unnecessarily. "Scarequotes" are for terms that may be loaded, and should be considered in context such as the term "soul" itself):

  • Nature of the soul
    • Does it carry experience directly from body to body, experiencing reality directly as part of the body?
    • Does it observe experience of a body or interact with it?
    • Is it however possibly observable internally?
    • Is it distinct from the body?
    • Is it communicative?
    • Is it material, immaterial, energy, or something in-between?
    • Can it be examined externally (looking beyond what we necessarily are aware of directly at this moment, scientifically)?
    • Is it mind, or distinct?
    • What alternatives exist to a discrete "soul" concept/object?

    [*]Transmission of the soul

    • Is it embodied, or distinct? (this may have ramifications on how it may be allowed to exist at any given moment)
    • Does it carry state, impressions, experience, etc?
      • Is it itself (im)mutable? Does it split, coalesce, converge and depart?

      [*]Can it be intercepted, directed, etc.?

      • Does it "flow" between places, exist in multiple places at once, or effectively transit instantaneously?

    [*]Communication of the soul

    • Does it impart physical change?
    • Does physicality impart change on it?
    • Does it communicate with the brain or inhabit it?
    • Can souls themselves communicate?

    [*]The "Otherkin Phenomena" as it pertains to the soul

    • Why are "non-human souls" (increasingly?) inhabiting human bodies?
    • How do we account for "non-terrestrial souls"?
      • Where are these other places of origin?
      • How can we account for more esoteric identities like "fictionkin" within this framework?

      [*]Are past-live memories necessarily past-lives? (split/coalesce/etc.)

      [*]Are souls necessarily "of" a species, or "carrying information" about a species, or some other sort of distinguishing characteristic/trait?

    [*]Extended concepts

    • Does the soul imply potential "extra-sensory phenomena"?
      • Locally or remote?

      [*]Does the soul imply non-local communication?

      • Where and/or whom?

      [*]Is the cases of multiple-systems instances of multiple souls, "sharded/separated" souls, or a single soul across multiple bodies?

      • Or a possible combination of multiple options?

 

...more?

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Guest Seraphyna   
Guest Seraphyna

I don't think the number of otherkin are increasing...I think it's easier to find the community since the advent of the internet. I also think that places like Tumblr have people thinking they're otherkin if they feel the slightest connection to something, so the number of people who say they're otherkin, but really aren't, has exploded.

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Is the cases of multiple-systems instances of multiple souls, "sharded/separated" souls, or a single soul across multiple bodies?

Multiple systems are many people/personalities sharing one body. If a system sees themselves as sharing one soul, pieces/shards of one souls, having their own each individual soul, don't believe in souls all together or don't believe they have a soul, or some combination of any or all of the above varies.

 

Why are "non-human souls" (increasingly?) inhabiting human bodies?

"Increasingly?" There isn't any reason or evidence to suggest they are. The only reason the online otherkin community has rapidly increased since it was created is due to more and more people being online and finding the online community. Thus giving them a term to describe their experiences. (Plus more people to misidentify themselves as otherkin as well of course.)

 

- Z (male, snowy owl)

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Grey    424

I believe that souls may possibly exist, but until the existence of something like that is proven without a doubt through scientifically relevant observation and methods, then I'm going to remain skeptical. Even so, I have no reason to believe that my own personal experiences with otherkinity are the result of something having to do with souls.

 

I believe that if souls do exist, then they are closely intertwined with the mind. I believe that the mind does arise from the functioning of the human brain, but unlike the brain is an intangible concept, much like a soul might be.

I also agree on the fact that the number of otherkin is not necessarily increasing... Through I haven't been a part of the community before tumblr and social media exploded the concept, I think that awareness of the concept has artificially inflated the number of people claiming to be otherkin.

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MechanicJasper    244

Like said, not all Otherkin explain their identity through a spiritual belief, and even some that do don't quite believe souls exist in general either. Psychological Otherkin do indeed exist.

 

But if we're basing this thread on spiritual beliefs, then I'll pitch in. I do believe in souls, but I don't believe in "Human souls", "animal souls", etc. To me a soul is not bound by a species, and is a force of pure energy. A soul can take control over any physical form it chooses, in my beliefs. I believe my soul has gone through multiple different lives before mine, probably even hundreds, but my kintype comes from the life that my soul still remembers, the life who's memories and form still resonate in my soul. Hence why my soul and aura shift back to how they were in my previous life at times, creating different shifts and personality changes within me. But that's just how I explain it. Everyone sees it a bit differently and if we all saw our identities the same way, our community wouldn't be nearly as diverse and interesting as it is.

 

I don't believe there are more Otherkin around now then there used to be. It really just seems to me like the communities and information on Otherkinity are more readily available to us, so it is now easier for people to learn and explore their path to self discovery.

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tianma    2
I don't think the number of otherkin are increasing...I think it's easier to find the community since the advent of the internet. I also think that places like Tumblr have people thinking they're otherkin if they feel the slightest connection to something, so the number of people who say they're otherkin, but really aren't, has exploded.

 

"Increasingly?" There isn't any reason or evidence to suggest they are. The only reason the online otherkin community has rapidly increased since it was created is due to more and more people being online and finding the online community. Thus giving them a term to describe their experiences. (Plus more people to misidentify themselves as otherkin as well of course.)

 

I did point this out in the case of mere increased visibility, as per LBGT+ communities. The number of LBGT+ people has not increased, only their visibility. I posed the question as just that, a question. The answers here, however, are certainly interesting, although we should be careful from invalidating identities, since gate-keeping is itself a risky venture.

 

Multiple systems are many people/personalities sharing one body. If a system sees themselves as sharing one soul, pieces/shards of one souls, having their own each individual soul, don't believe in souls all together or don't believe they have a soul, or some combination of any or all of the above varies.

 

This is interesting, thank you.

 

I believe that if souls do exist, then they are closely intertwined with the mind. I believe that the mind does arise from the functioning of the human brain, but unlike the brain is an intangible concept, much like a soul might be.

I also agree on the fact that the number of otherkin is not necessarily increasing... Through I haven't been a part of the community before tumblr and social media exploded the concept, I think that awareness of the concept has artificially inflated the number of people claiming to be otherkin.

 

Very interesting. I do agree with the whole Tumblr explosion thing, and I apologize if my phrasing made it unclear, the question is if it is "actually" exploding, or merely more visible or having the appearance of larger numbers.

 

Like said, not all Otherkin explain their identity through a spiritual belief, and even some that do don't quite believe souls exist in general either. Psychological Otherkin do indeed exist.

 

Most certainly, I do not wish to discount them overall. I would like to give them due treatment in other topics, so as to minimize cross-chatter of perspectives.

 

But if we're basing this thread on spiritual beliefs, then I'll pitch in. I do believe in souls, but I don't believe in "Human souls", "animal souls", etc. To me a soul is not bound by a species, and is a force of pure energy. A soul can take control over any physical form it chooses, in my beliefs. I believe my soul has gone through multiple different lives before mine, probably even hundreds, but my kintype comes from the life that my soul still remembers, the life who's memories and form still resonate in my soul. Hence why my soul and aura shift back to how they were in my previous life at times, creating different shifts and personality changes within me. But that's just how I explain it. Everyone sees it a bit differently and if we all saw our identities the same way, our community wouldn't be nearly as diverse and interesting as it is.

 

I don't believe there are more Otherkin around now then there used to be. It really just seems to me like the communities and information on Otherkinity are more readily available to us, so it is now easier for people to learn and explore their path to self discovery.

 

Thanks for pitching in; all perspectives deserve due treatment. Quite so, diversity is the spice of life, is it not?

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Guest Seraphyna   
Guest Seraphyna

Since you brought up gatekeeping, I'd just like to point out what it is...

 

Gatekeeping is the act of telling someone to whom a word applies that it does not based on personal biases. It is not telling someone that a word doesn't apply because the meaning of the word is not what someone thinks it is.

 

For example, gatekeeping is not telling someone "hey, you know, you aren't otherkin if you just feel a connection to something". Gatekeeping would be telling someone "hey, so I know you identify as an angel...but you aren't otherkin because I don't think angels exist so you can't identify as one."

 

In the theme of Tumblr, gatekeeping would be telling someone who identifies as non-human that they aren't otherkin because someone doesn't believe in spiritual things. Pointing out that a connection to something is not what otherkinity is is not gatekeeping.

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tianma    2

Thanks @Seraphyna.

 

There is an unfortunately low amount of people looking at the specific questions, however below the brief exposition of current prevailing stances in the audience thus far, I've summarized some posts and requested further exploration.

 

-----------------------------------------------------------------

 

First, an overview of the poll thus far, then more comments.

 

While I suspect the title might introduce bias on participant selection, here are the current stats of preference from visitors/voters. Later, I hope to add from a secular-based source.

  1. Definitely
    8 vote(s)
    53.3%
  2. Maybe, yes
    4 vote(s)
    26.7%
  3. Maybe, no
    2 vote(s)
    13.3%
  4. Absolutely not
    1 vote(s)
    6.7%

To improve balance and give perspective, here are a few highly unscientific interpretations that give pretty much the same result:

 

Weighted sum ("overlapping curves")

  1. Definitely (1*A + 2/3*B + 1/3*C)
    • 11.3333 (53%)

[*]Maybe (B+C)

  • 6 (28%)

[*]No (1*D + 2/3*C + 1/3*B)

  • 3.6666 (17%)

Harmonic mean (of percents, clustered as in weighted sum without weights, normalized)

  1. Definitely
    • 57%

[*]Maybe

  • 28%

[*]No

  • 14%

-----------------------------------------------------------------

... I don't believe in "Human souls", "animal souls", etc. To me a soul is not bound by a species, and is a force of pure energy. A soul can take control over any physical form it chooses, in my beliefs.

 

Am I wrong to draw the corollary that thus the soul may also be interacted with in the reverse: physical matter over energy, or even fields such as electromagnetic, gravity, etc.?

 

I believe my soul has gone through multiple different lives before mine, probably even hundreds, but my kintype comes from the life that my soul still remembers, the life who's memories and form still resonate in my soul.

 

And as such is a carrier of information/experience? Do you go as far as to say it is pure in the sense of being fully self-contained, the body is merely an appendage? Or is it just what the resonance implies, a vessel wherein experience may reside and be transported?

 

Hence why my soul and aura shift back to how they were in my previous life at times, creating different shifts and personality changes within me.

 

Then in your understanding, is that an effect of the soul over the mind, the imprint of the soul upon the mind, or something else perhaps?

 

But that's just how I explain it. Everyone sees it a bit differently and if we all saw our identities the same way, our community wouldn't be nearly as diverse and interesting as it is.

 

I've picked up upon many common threads, which is why this thread exists. I want to get people to examine their conceptions and give their interpretations. By doing this, I can combine these into something of a document to help other people understand their perspectives, while demonstrating the variety of possibilities, or even find "key elements" which people tend to gravitate toward for one reason or another.

 

Multiple systems are many people/personalities sharing one body. If a system sees themselves as sharing one soul, pieces/shards of one souls, having their own each individual soul, don't believe in souls all together or don't believe they have a soul, or some combination of any or all of the above varies.

 

I see you fell into the trap as to misunderstand my intention, I don't wish to imply that any specific perspective is more correct then any other. However, the interesting possibility of multiple systems existing in a situation such that not all entities are of the same "source" is a very interesting angle I hadn't even considered.

 

I believe that souls may possibly exist, but until the existence of something like that is proven without a doubt through scientifically relevant observation and methods, then I'm going to remain skeptical. Even so, I have no reason to believe that my own personal experiences with otherkinity are the result of something having to do with souls.

 

Sceptical of the soul is certainly a rational perspective.

 

I believe that if souls do exist, then they are closely intertwined with the mind. I believe that the mind does arise from the functioning of the human brain, but unlike the brain is an intangible concept, much like a soul might be....

 

Interestingly enough, we also cannot directly observe the mind in much the same manner.

 

I also agree on the fact that the number of otherkin is not necessarily increasing... Through I haven't been a part of the community before tumblr and social media exploded the concept, I think that awareness of the concept has artificially inflated the number of people claiming to be otherkin.

 

I find tumblr to be a rather poison environment where much too much is carried much too far, in every single way.

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Gryff    428

I used to have a very clear cut idea of what souls are and how they interact with being kin, but my views are more general now. I believe that souls exist, thought I don't claim to understand the hows and whys. I do believe souls take a former of some sort based on species; either they are a certain species, or they start as general things and get molded by the body/bodies they find themselves in. For me, I believe I have a fauntaur soul but somehow ended up in the wrong kind of body. It either was a fauntaur soul from the start, or became one through previous lives.

 

I don't claim to be anything resembling certain about any of this though.

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MechanicJasper    244

Am I wrong to draw the corollary that thus the soul may also be interacted with in the reverse: physical matter over energy, or even fields such as electromagnetic, gravity, etc.?

I'll admit, I haven't quite figured out the composition of my soul or even how it works in the slightest. I'm not sure I ever will, it's a pesky thing to get a read on, but I think I'm at peace with that.

 

And as such is a carrier of information/experience? Do you go as far as to say it is pure in the sense of being fully self-contained, the body is merely an appendage? Or is it just what the resonance implies, a vessel wherein experience may reside and be transported?

My soul can survive without a vessel, I believe. It's just that the vessel allows me to live and interact with those in the vessel's community. I believe my soul may carry a limited amount of experience and memory, less than a physical mind can, hence why I only remember key points in my previous life. From what I can tell, my soul can carry select feelings and memories from it's previous vessel to it's new vessel, causing memories and shifts in the new vessel.

 

Then in your understanding, is that an effect of the soul over the mind, the imprint of the soul upon the mind, or something else perhaps?

I see my soul and mind as very different things, really. They definitely have an effect upon eachother, but they may separate. To me the soul is the basis of who I am. It is my identity. I am my soul. My personality and actions are results of my brain, which varies in each different vessel, so none of my past lives (however many that may be) would have been just like me personality-wise. They would have still been me, but also different, because they had different brains (or programming in my previous life's sense).

 

I've picked up upon many common threads, which is why this thread exists. I want to get people to examine their conceptions and give their interpretations. By doing this, I can combine these into something of a document to help other people understand their perspectives, while demonstrating the variety of possibilities, or even find "key elements" which people tend to gravitate toward for one reason or another.

I hope my input is helpful! I hope I answered these correctly. My mind is a little blurry this morning, caffeine hasn't kicked in yet.

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tianma    2

Before I begin, I must state plainly that this is as much an exercise for myself as for you all. Having previously been misunderstood as to my intention, please be of awareness on the factual statement that I do not intend to offer presumption upon your meaning, nor thrust my own upon you. If you are of the understanding I have done such, or misunderstood/misinterpreted/misrepresented some statement you have made: Say So. No harm comes from conversation when all parties share respect, and what might be error in such a strange and broad topic, may give rise to new views.

 

I don't claim to be anything resembling certain about any of this though.

 

With great doubt in any preconceived notions, I observe everybody else feels here appears in a similar manner. Leave absolutes for the ones who have already crossed over.

 

I used to have a very clear cut idea of what souls are and how they interact with being kin, but my views are more general now. I believe that souls exist, thought I don't claim to understand the hows and whys. I do believe souls take a former of some sort based on species; either they are a certain species, or they start as general things and get molded by the body/bodies they find themselves in. For me, I believe I have a fauntaur soul but somehow ended up in the wrong kind of body. It either was a fauntaur soul from the start, or became one through previous lives.

 

It strikes me as plausible that the "soul" might itself have form and function, which is influenced by some so-called vessel. Interpreting your understanding somewhat, it appears perhaps that such shape and manner is dictated by connection rather then pre-existing bias, but as such can necessarily "have species" (however mutable) attached by virtue of form? I question the choice of word "wrong kind of body" in that "wrong" implies there is necessarily no decision making behind your current occupation? Perhaps, I may suggest, the soul decides where to go next of its own accord?

 

I'll admit, I haven't quite figured out the composition of my soul or even how it works in the slightest. I'm not sure I ever will, it's a pesky thing to get a read on, but I think I'm at peace with that.

 

I am at peace with the great amount of effort you are expending for our collective benefit here in sharing your thoughts.

 

My soul can survive without a vessel, I believe. It's just that the vessel allows me to live and interact with those in the vessel's community.

 

I find this an intuitively agreeable assertion. As the soul must exist without body, perhaps for long periods of what we know as "time", it does suggest the vessel is merely a convenience.

 

I believe my soul may carry a limited amount of experience and memory, less than a physical mind can, hence why I only remember key points in my previous life. From what I can tell, my soul can carry select feelings and memories from it's previous vessel to it's new vessel, causing memories and shifts in the new vessel.

 

As for interpretations, this one is of particular interest. I might draw a parallel here for us, on the Japanese traditions of ghost stories. In these stories, there are often vengeful spirits who died in abrupt manners and roam the earth with vengeful and horrible intent. Your interpretation goes along with this well, since one with capacity of analysis and complete recollection would be able to reconcile many of the situations that are said to give rise to these "spiritual disturbances", however your conception of a soul lacks these broader concepts, and can only store a limited amount of information. Given this conception, it is not unreasonable to believe that the events (which are traumatic to the individual) can imprint the entirety of the soul, giving rise to these "vengeful spirits". However, such conjecture is hinged upon many precepts, but your interpretation certainly offers reason.

 

I see my soul and mind as very different things, really. They definitely have an effect upon each other, but they may separate. To me the soul is the basis of who I am. It is my identity. I am my soul. My personality and actions are results of my brain, which varies in each different vessel, so none of my past lives (however many that may be) would have been just like me personality-wise. They would have still been me, but also different, because they had different brains (or programming in my previous life's sense).

 

This reminds me of the philosophical problem of the boat who's boards are steadily replaced due to rot with time. Eventually, none of the "original" boards remain, so it is only merely some conceptual "soul" that grants the vessel her name and identity. In people, as you suggest, the soul is more concrete and carries with it some absolute form of identity, across boundaries such as time, space and social situations. This is quite interesting, given there are many histories we cannot any longer observe directly, but may divine lightly through introspection. We change from moment to moment, I see no reason to believe we would not from life to life.

 

I hope my input is helpful! I hope I answered these correctly. My mind is a little blurry this morning, caffeine hasn't kicked in yet.

 

All conversation has value on such a contentious topic, so many opinions and rationale to collect; I find this to be very thoughtful and interesting.

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