A Brief Introduction of the Book:

The book “A Treatise on the Soul” is a different and innovative approach to the subject of the soul. The subject was investigated and studied through laboratory research performed at UCL (University College London) and inspired by the Quran’s description of the soul. In Abrahamic religions, concepts such as free will and holding humans accountable for their conduct are fundamental to one’s belief in the Judgement day and life in the Hereafter. Undoubtedly, finding a scientific solution to these issues is crucial for religion and depends on finding a clear and decisive answer to the question of ‘what is the soul’? In an attempt to answer this question, the book examines the soul, the physiological mechanism of how it affects the brain, and the consequences of those effects, namely free will, the mind, consciousness, and other unique human attributes, from a neuroscientific perspective.

Because of the significance of these topics, they have been studied widely and comprehensively throughout human history. However, they have been mostly examined from a religious and philosophical perspective, resulting in often diverse and sometimes conflicting conclusions. Religion and philosophy fall short of answering questions such as ‘what is the soul,’ ‘how does it function,’ and ‘how does it influence the phenomena of this world.’ From a scientific perspective, the soul has been dismissed as nonsense. The dominant views of naturalism in science have overshadowed all scientific investigations of the soul and reject the possibility that an immaterial and non-deterministic agent can intervene in the phenomena of this world. Such an approach imposes an a priori assumption on all scientific investigations and subsequent interpretation of the data, which can compromise our accurate understanding of the universe and its phenomena. Furthermore, neuroscientists have discovered most brain mechanisms to be physical and strongly oppose the existence of an immaterial agent such as the soul and its attributes, specifically free will. Unfortunately, the soul has been reduced to either banal discourse by religion and philosophy or turned down entirely by science.

It is essential that we initiate these discussions. The idea of this book and the underlying scientific research were born at a time when I was at a dead end in my socio-political activities and realized the need for a careful investigation into the role of human authority in social movements. “A treatise on the soul” is the result of many years of scientific research and investigation, which resolves some of our basic questions about life. This study – the first of its kind – is based on laboratory data, adheres to scientific principles, and avoids vague religious or philosophical assertions and a priori assumptions. The data and inferred conclusions can be reproduced, evaluated, and consequently accepted or rejected. Below you can see excerpts from the documentary accompanying the book, highlighting some of the topics discussed in the book.

The Need to Investigate a Phenomenon such as the Soul:

What do modern scientists think about a phenomenon like the soul? And is it necessary to study such a phenomenon?

The Search for the Soul in Modern Humans’ History of Evolution:

Is it possible to conclude by examining the evolutionary history of hominoids that all the extraordinary characteristics of modern humans result from gradual evolution or that modern humans are fundamentally different from other species of hominoids?

The Effects of the Environment on the Living Organisms Behavior and the Effects of Humans’ Behavior on the Environment:

Like all living organisms, do humans change their behavior based on their new environment? What are the effects of evolution and gene mutation on humans and other animals, and what consequences do they have on their behavior?

How can One Explain Humans’ Conduct Based on Darwin’s Theory of Evolution?

Darwin’s theory of evolution, as one of the most successful theories in biology, can accurately explain animal behavior and their adaptation to their new environment based on the phenomenon of gene mutation. But is this theory also able to explain human behavior, which seems independent of their physical structure?

Is Belief in the Soul Scientifically Justified?

Why do scientists today consider the subject of the soul to be an unscientific subject? The belief that the soul is an unreal and imaginary phenomenon is based on a priori assumptions that scientists have adopted and imposed on science. Removing these assumptions allows us to scientifically investigate this non-deterministic phenomenon.

Human Beings’ Non-Deterministic Behavior:

Unlike other animals, human behavior is not constrained by its physical structure and instincts. Humans have free will and the ability to choose their behavior, which entails responsibility and sometimes regret.

The Effect of the Soul on Human Behavior and the Override Mechanism:

What is the difference between behavior driven by one’s natural instincts and behavior driven by the soul’s control? Is the human soul capable of overcoming humans’ instinctual desires? Solutions to these questions will inevitably bring about more questions such as, “how does the soul affect our behavior?”, “Which part of our brain is the locus of the soul?”, “How is the override mechanism activated?” and many more questions, all of which are discussed in the documentary’s second part.

This post is also available in: Persian