The spiritual evolution of man in the light of physical evolution?

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An excellent article in the Smithsonian detailing many of the fossil bone and tool finds over many years that have established beyond the shadow of a doubt that Homo Sapiens did slowly evolve both physically and culturally over the last 750,000 years or so from semihuman relatively primitive forms into modern man with great scientific, technological, artistic cultural, and spiritual capabilities and achievements.

Quote:"The long evolutionary journey that created modern humans began with a single step—or more accurately—with the ability to walk on two legs. One of our earliest-known ancestors, Sahelanthropus, began the slow transition from ape-like movement some six million years ago, but Homo sapiens wouldn’t show up for more than five million years. During that long interim, a menagerie of different human species lived, evolved and died out, intermingling and sometimes interbreeding along the way. As time went on, their bodies changed, as did their brains and their ability to think, as seen in their tools and technologies.

To understand how Homo sapiens eventually evolved from these older lineages of hominins, the group including modern humans and our closest extinct relatives and ancestors, scientists are unearthing ancient bones and stone tools, digging into our genes and recreating the changing environments that helped shape our ancestors’ world and guide their evolution."


Of course materialist anthropologists assume "spiritual evolution" is just another relatively late cultural anomaly with no existential implications (there is no such thing as a spiritual realm), but as discussed at length in this forum, the very large body of paranormal empirical evidence that has accumulated points conclusively toward the existence of a spiritual realm that man is very much a part of.

The mystery is how to reconcile the undeniable anthropological fossil evidence of a very gradual transformation of man from a brute to the modern version, with the spiritual view of modern man with a soul and an afterlife. Obviously evolution is a fact even though as revealed in several threads here, for many reasons the Darwinistic undirected by intelligence semi-random walk mechanism assumed to be how it happened is totally untenable.

So there appears on the surface to be a cognitive dissonance between two large bodies of evidence, unless there can be some sort of understanding of how the spiritual component of modern man's persona came to be especially in the developmental primitive stages of this very slow (in terms of hundreds of thousands of years) process.

At what point did the souls decide that the "physical vehicle" had finally evolved to an appropriate form and therefore decide to inhabit the physical, or did the soul itself evolve along with the physical body and culture? If the latter, what sort of consciousness did the early primitive forms of soul have, and what sort of early primitive afterlife?  What sort of higher spiritual plan could this be the result of, and what sort of spiritual beings could be behind it? 

We have no idea. On the surface it looks like just an attempt to merge two completely incompatible bodies of evidence.
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Certainly is quite the source of doubt isn't it. Things liie this make it so if there was no suggestive evidence of PSI and survival, I definitely wouldn't believe in it. It's hard to fault skeptics when this is their reasoning too. 

Personally I take the latter approach of an evolving soul. If some form of emergent dualism, or idealism is true, then it only makes sense how we would change over time as our species evolved. If that means there's different afterlives then it is what it is, we already have some evidence of that via cultural aspects of NDEs, or at least that the 'part' of the place you end up may be culturally shaped like anything in life.
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(2021-02-07, 06:09 PM)nbtruthman Wrote: An excellent article in the Smithsonian detailing many of the fossil bone and tool finds over many years that have established beyond the shadow of a doubt that Homo Sapiens did slowly evolve both physically and culturally over the last 750,000 years or so from semihuman relatively primitive forms into modern man with great scientific, technological, artistic cultural, and spiritual capabilities and achievements.



Of course materialist anthropologists assume "spiritual evolution" is just another relatively late cultural anomaly with no existential implications (there is no such thing as a spiritual realm), but as discussed at length in this forum, the very large body of paranormal empirical evidence that has accumulated points conclusively toward the existence of a spiritual realm that man is very much a part of.

The mystery is how to reconcile the undeniable anthropological fossil evidence of a very gradual transformation of man from a brute to the modern version, with the spiritual view of modern man with a soul and an afterlife. Obviously evolution is a fact even though as revealed in several threads here, for many reasons the Darwinistic undirected by intelligence semi-random walk mechanism assumed to be how it happened is totally untenable.

So there appears on the surface to be a cognitive dissonance between two large bodies of evidence, unless there can be some sort of understanding of how the spiritual component of modern man's persona came to be especially in the developmental primitive stages of this very slow (in terms of hundreds of thousands of years) process.

At what point did the souls decide that the "physical vehicle" had finally evolved to an appropriate form and therefore decide to inhabit the physical, or did the soul itself evolve along with the physical body and culture? If the latter, what sort of consciousness did the early primitive forms of soul have, and what sort of early primitive afterlife?  What sort of higher spiritual plan could this be the result of, and what sort of spiritual beings could be behind it? 

We have no idea. On the surface it looks like just an attempt to merge two completely incompatible bodies of evidence.

I suppose really the ball might be in our court now. There's suggestive evidence of PSI and survival, but not convincing to the major establishment. How would we know about spirituality in evolution if all we've ever looked for is a physicalist explanation? There's never been any reason to look for anything else because there has never been enough evidence to consider it. Discoveries could be made, things we know about actual history could have the evidence we know of fit in over time, but until we have enough to make enough of a stand to convince people at large the best we are going to get is what we have now.
(2021-02-08, 04:09 AM)Smaw Wrote: I suppose really the ball might be in our court now. There's suggestive evidence of PSI and survival, but not convincing to the major establishment. How would we know about spirituality in evolution if all we've ever looked for is a physicalist explanation? There's never been any reason to look for anything else because there has never been enough evidence to consider it. Discoveries could be made, things we know about actual history could have the evidence we know of fit in over time, but until we have enough to make enough of a stand to convince people at large the best we are going to get is what we have now.

I think that what you call "suggestive evidence" is already in fact strong, extensive and conclusive. This evidence includes all the strong reasons that have been found why physicalism is totally false. But at this point the "establishment" in science, education and the media are totally brainwashed in their investment in physicalism, it being a paradigm that grounds the personalities of millions. At this point I don't think any amount of evidence we could accumulate and present would convince this establishment - they mostly have closed minds, having too much invested in the old paradigm. Still, in fact there is change going on, but this is an agonizingly slow process.
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(2021-02-08, 04:35 PM)nbtruthman Wrote: I think that what you call "suggestive evidence" is already in fact strong, extensive and conclusive. This evidence includes all the strong reasons that have been found why physicalism is totally false. But at this point the "establishment" in science, education and the media are totally brainwashed in their investment in physicalism, it being a paradigm that grounds the personalities of millions. At this point I don't think any amount of evidence we could accumulate and present would convince this establishment - they mostly have closed minds, having too much invested in the old paradigm. Still, in fact there is change going on, but this is an agonizingly slow process.

I actually think the other branch of evidence is going to go against the pseudo-skeptic narrative as well. Linguistics, Spirituality, Reason, Memory...the explanations spinning out from the Physicalist churches clearly aren't convincing as they have to depend ultimately on randomness.

Viruses responsible for memory, psychology responsible for odd commonalities in mysticism and spirituality, "just-so" explanations for the foundations of human society...the public isn't buying it, whether they are traditional church/temple goers or New Agers or even students doing proofs in the Math department....
'Historically, we may regard materialism as a system of dogma set up to combat orthodox dogma...Accordingly we find that, as ancient orthodoxies disintegrate, materialism more and more gives way to scepticism.'

- Bertrand Russell


(This post was last modified: 2021-02-08, 06:11 PM by Sciborg_S_Patel.)
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(2021-02-08, 04:35 PM)nbtruthman Wrote: I think that what you call "suggestive evidence" is already in fact strong, extensive and conclusive. This evidence includes all the strong reasons that have been found why physicalism is totally false. But at this point the "establishment" in science, education and the media are totally brainwashed in their investment in physicalism, it being a paradigm that grounds the personalities of millions. At this point I don't think any amount of evidence we could accumulate and present would convince this establishment - they mostly have closed minds, having too much invested in the old paradigm. Still, in fact there is change going on, but this is an agonizingly slow process.

I don't feel like all of this is right. We can't even rule out a physicalist explanations for PSI right now so that's already a mark (we can say they are unlikely, but the possibility is not outright disproved). We don't know how PSI operates right now, we've only have a kind of repeatable experiment and we don't have any blatant tests where we can go BAM PSI exists. What we have now is good, enough to get some inquisitive looks, solid enough to not be able to be dismissed outright, but we still need more if we're gonna be paradgim changing. Materialism is very good at what it does, it's incredibly successful and will still be successful if PSI exists, we need to keep improving if we're gonna make big changes.
(2021-02-09, 09:51 PM)Smaw Wrote: I don't feel like all of this is right. We can't even rule out a physicalist explanations for PSI right now so that's already a mark (we can say they are unlikely, but the possibility is not outright disproved). We don't know how PSI operates right now, we've only have a kind of repeatable experiment and we don't have any blatant tests where we can go BAM PSI exists. What we have now is good, enough to get some inquisitive looks, solid enough to not be able to be dismissed outright, but we still need more if we're gonna be paradgim changing. Materialism is very good at what it does, it's incredibly successful and will still be successful if PSI exists, we need to keep improving if we're gonna make big changes.

As Nbtruthman recently posted in another thread scientists - many of the greats who weren't materialists - have been successful.

That doesn't mean materialism has been successful, especially since reductionism itself has led to the quantum realm.
'Historically, we may regard materialism as a system of dogma set up to combat orthodox dogma...Accordingly we find that, as ancient orthodoxies disintegrate, materialism more and more gives way to scepticism.'

- Bertrand Russell


(2021-02-09, 09:51 PM)Smaw Wrote: I don't feel like all of this is right. We can't even rule out a physicalist explanations for PSI right now so that's already a mark (we can say they are unlikely, but the possibility is not outright disproved). We don't know how PSI operates right now, we've only have a kind of repeatable experiment and we don't have any blatant tests where we can go BAM PSI exists. What we have now is good, enough to get some inquisitive looks, solid enough to not be able to be dismissed outright, but we still need more if we're gonna be paradgim changing. Materialism is very good at what it does, it's incredibly successful and will still be successful if PSI exists, we need to keep improving if we're gonna make big changes.

You talk only about PSI, apparently dismissing the importance of psychical phenomena such as veridical NDEs, mediumistic communications, reincarnation memories. Such psychical phenomena have the most direct bearing on the existence of an afterlife. Does that mean you consider these sorts of phenomena totally in the realm of worthless anecdotal accounts, not evidence? Of course, these latter phenomena are of such a nature that they are generally incapable of being tested in the laboratory, they can't be duplicated at will in different laboratories, etc. and so are outside the purview of science, or at least the physical sciences. Do you think that means they can't really exist?

If the paradigm can't change without solid laboratory experimental proof of psychical phenomena of the order of duplicatable in different laboratories physics and chemistry experiments, then the paradigm will never change. If so, so be it, but veridical NDEs will still continue, life will go on, along with the continuing of human experiences of the paranormal.
(This post was last modified: 2021-02-10, 12:26 AM by nbtruthman.)
(2021-02-10, 12:17 AM)nbtruthman Wrote: You talk only about PSI, apparently dismissing the importance of psychical phenomena such as veridical NDEs, mediumistic communications, reincarnation memories. Such psychical phenomena have the most direct bearing on the existence of an afterlife. Does that mean you consider these sorts of phenomena totally in the realm of worthless anecdotal accounts, not evidence? Of course, these latter phenomena are of such a nature that they are generally incapable of being tested in the laboratory, they can't be duplicated at will in different laboratories, etc. and so are outside the purview of science, or at least the physical sciences. Do you think that means they can't really exist?

If the paradigm can't change without solid laboratory experimental proof of psychical phenomena of the order of duplicatable in different laboratories physics and chemistry experiments, then the paradigm will never change. If so, so be it, but veridical NDEs will still continue, life will go on, along with the continuing of human experiences of the paranormal.

Obviously I'm not throwing away all those things, but they aren't the only things that get studied. If PSI wants to get real mainsteam attention research needs to keep improving, pointing that out isn't any heretical position. Looking at where we are lacking is important and it's doubly important because where we are lacking is where we need to get better to really get rolling. 

If PSI can get grounded support and we learn more about it then it all looks up for NDEs, mediums ect and we can better get an idea of where physicalism fails. If it doesn't then we're left scrounging around waiting and hoping we don't get blindsided by some new big discovery that shows how physicalism can explain these things. I doubt it's at all likely, but until we can cement a position we can't dismiss it, so we need more and better research.
(2021-02-10, 03:56 AM)Smaw Wrote: If PSI can get grounded support and we learn more about it then it all looks up for NDEs, mediums ect and we can better get an idea of where physicalism fails. If it doesn't then we're left scrounging around waiting and hoping we don't get blindsided by some new big discovery that shows how physicalism can explain these things. I doubt it's at all likely, but until we can cement a position we can't dismiss it, so we need more and better research.
OK,  let me think of the last big discovery of physicalism?    (crickets....)

Are neuroscience data a product of the philosophy or are they just good observation and documentation.  Are some theoretical claims - say B. Baars and his Global Workspace Model - used to claim that the brain is the root cause of mind, sure.  Note the good data of Baar's research doesn't say that.  The analysis of Bernard says it, as a narrative and it just happen to fit with the fashion of the times.  Please let me also say that Baar's work is highly professional.

But there is NOTHING Baar's work can postulate from the GWM that threatens anything I think is solid scientific analysis.

Baar offers a process model, just for that his position is substantial.  Process model can be tested virtually and physically. 

Baar's process model is one delineating how communication of competing bio-information processes resolve themselves.  (Hence, aimed at communication functionality and selection of focus, both informational activities)

Even if someone like S. Dehaene can map the workspace on to a physical neuronal-network, it doesn't magically make all the causes of an informational network - physical.  There are meanings that can change the action when detected and incorporated.

There is nothing wrong with research done with the context of only physical causes.  It is incomplete on purpose.  Informational realism doesn't change any physical science - it just doesn't pretend that there are no informational transformations or that mind changes real-world probabilities.

What Psi needs is a process model for mind, that is based on the best of modern neuro-science, with a corresponding model for how mind is actively interacting with the environment.
(This post was last modified: 2021-02-10, 07:50 PM by stephenw.)
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