A Call To The Humanities To Reclaim Its Concious Self
- Written by Shaun Johnston Shaun Johnston
- Published: November 24, 2011 November 24, 2011
Sometime around 1850 the break up of the soul spread like an infection from isolated enclaves to the educated public. We've been reacting to that cataclysm ever since.
I see response taking four forms. The first was to emphasize free will. More recently the response has taken the forms of physicalism--denial of any reality except matter and physical forces--and spirituality. A fourth response is a return to God.
I was born halfway back to that moment in history. I'm a time capsule, someone who believes in free will. I've been challenged to appreciate why physicalism and spirituality have been embraced over free will. I've just recently found a clue--they both come with content, physicalism with content from science--neuroscience, for example--spirituality with content in the forms of the spirits adopted such as laws of attraction and higher powers. Only free will comes without content, putting the burden of coming up with content on the individual. Maybe the rise and fall of free will accounts for the simultaneous rise and fall of existentialism.
I realize now I've spent my life looking to evolution for content for free will. In "Alternative to Darwinism and Creationism" and my prior book "Self Improvement Through a New Approach to Evolution" I've presented early results. I now see my role in the response to loss of the soul is to provide a philosophically-aware account of free will, with content, for those unhappy with physicalism and spirituality.