Reconciling Spirituality With Science

Anybody that’s known me long enough knows that I’m a pretty big skeptic, a literal realist. I believe in science, not oogy-boogy mysticism. Lately, though, I’ve been talking a lot about spirituality and souls and all manner of other un-measurables. The un-quantifiable. So how do I reconcile all these seemingly disparate views? Easy, I believe there are real explanations for these things. For example…

The soul? The “soul” is not some magical glowing invisible orb residing in our bodies, or some strange undefined energy. It is the collection of our thoughts, our feelings, or beliefs, our experiences, our perceptions, our emotions. An amalgam of all the things that make us who we are. We define it and re-define it every day in the way we treat ourselves and those around us, it is a dynamic, ever-changing (but very real) presence. And our souls are not just our own, we alone don’t define them. They exist as much in the people we touch from day to day as they do in ourselves. This is how our souls live on after we’ve gone. The residue of all those things that make up the soul is left behind, imprinted in the souls of our friends, families, all those we allowed into our lives. That is life after death, not ghosts or spirits or any other such mystical thing.

That is just one example of my realistic view of the “unreal”. I find that perception to be far more beautiful and poetic than any oogy-boogy explanation (and yes, I’m quoting a MythBuster again, there’s a bit of cynical symmetry there. *grin*)

Does the Ganesh statue sitting on my desk really have some strange power to bring me luck? In and of itself, no. No more than the fire extinguisher hanging across the hall from my cubicle does. But, if I view it as a metaphor or icon for luck and allow it to re-form my thoughts it can have that effect. I can use it to put the idea of good things happening in my head, and through that more positive outlook affect my reality in a more positive way. That statue in particular also carries with it the extra power of having been in touch with the soul of someone very important and very inspirational to me, which makes it give off all the more “luck” for me by pulling from her energy and life-force. But I make no mistake, the “luck” comes from within me (and from within her), not from the little statue itself. It is only the trigger. (Which isn’t to minimize or diminish the powerful effect it can (and does) have. The things it represents inspire me daily.)

So, there you have it. A reconciliation, of sorts. Best I can offer…