Nonphysical Souls Would Violate Physical Laws
Wilson (David L.)
Source: Martin & Augustine - The Myth of an Afterlife, Part 2, Chapter 14
Paper - Abstract

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Editors’ Abstract1

    This paper argues that nonphysical souls would violate fundamental physical laws if they were able to influence brain events. Though we have no idea how nonphysical souls might operate, we know quite a bit about how brains work, so we can consider each of the ways that an external force could interrupt brain processes enough to control one’s body. It concludes that there is no way that a nonphysical soul could interact with the brain — neither by introducing new energy into the physical world, nor by borrowing existing energy from it — without apparently violating one or more basic laws of physics, such as the law of conservation of energy. And despite widespread appeals to quantum mechanics2 to give interactionism an air of scientific respectability, the essential randomness of quantum processes prohibits the distinctly nonrandom influence that a nonphysical soul must have on brain events in order to control the body, and quantum mechanical uncertainty is not great enough to allow neurons to fire action potentials.



In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1: Taken from Link.


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  1. Blue: Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2020
  2. Mauve: Text by correspondent(s) or other author(s); © the author(s)



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