Prefatory Notes on the Poverty of the Soul

“Let us never fear robbers nor murderers. Those are dangers from without, petty dangers. Let us fear ourselves. Prejudices are the real robbers; vices are the real murderers. The great dangers lie within ourselves. What matters it what threatens our head or our purse! Let us think only of that which threatens our soul.” – Victor Hugo

The word “soul” has been reprehensible for too long. The theologians that preach the salvation of the soul only end up strangling what little bit of soul we may have left. There is a soul, but it is fundamentally different than how we have thought about it until now. It must not be reduced to the mind or body: it is a third substance. An essentialist conception of the soul fails to recognize this important differentiation. What actually composes the soul is the question at the heart of these notes. Read the rest of this entry »