TED Conversations

This conversation is closed.

What research has been done to inspect whether there are connections between the spiritual and the physical?

Starting from the belief that spiritual does in fact exist, has there been any research done to discover what sort of provable effects and connections exist between the physical and/or mental aspects of human life? If so, what do they present? Are their any TED talks directed towards this?

I assume those interested would be those who study and are interested in the overlap of various studies such has cultural, medical, religious, and psychological, and their practical relationships. Potential experts this question is geared to are those in the field such as neuroscientists, psychologists, endocrinologist, physicians, religious workers, etc...

There of course is a starting bias that the spiritual does in fact exist, and in definition is different that the psychological, emotional, and physical.

Also related, what experiences have you had that proof or disprove the overlap of the spiritual with human life?


Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • Jan 14 2013: It’s pretty simple,matter is created by spirit.
    You can't study spirit by a scientific method, which is based on separation, for spirit is a unity.
    All nature is a unity, spirit and matter are not separate; all you see around is different levels of condensation of the same stuff, call it consciousness, spirit , god, vibration... what have you.
    If it is not the evidence , i don't know what ' evidence ' is :)
    • Jan 15 2013: Hi Natasha,

      Rudolf Steiner means to say that the spiritual world is here, now, all around us. Although we cannot see it, Steiner is telling us that we can learn to see it. Train ourselves to see it through meditation and careful observation. One has to strengthen the forces of our being in order to do so. The forces that more or less lie dormant in us until we actively awaken them ourselves. It's life long process for the most of us. But it is just to set ones foot on the path. The inner path of spiritual development. We are all on it, whether we know it or not. .... like it or not ... and it's just a question of time before we all arrive there and recognize the spiritual realities in the physical world. It may take years, hundreds of years ... even thousands..
      ... and Steiner claims that we do, in fact, have many lifetimes to get there.

      One of the most special ideas from Rudolf Steiner's Anthroposophy is the idea that in this process of developing first the recognition and then an understanding of the spiritual world, one also is correct in choosing .... and even dependent upon using just the "scientific method." Thinking is THE most developed tool we have at our disposition. Thinking is the corrector of all our imaginations and intuitions. The corrector of all our feelings and emotions. The potential "overseer" of all our will impulses, both conscious and unconscious. And when one can finally say that one has penetrated into the depths of the spiritual realities of nature and the human being, thinking remains the corrector of the knowledge and impressions that are be gained there.
      That which we see in the material / physical world, is, as you say, a manifestation of the spiritual world. There is no matter without spirit. But we also see that the spirit works on many different levels. We see how the plant differs from the stone. The animal differs from the plant. And how the human being differs from the animal.

      It all becomes an enormous picture...
      • Jan 16 2013: Yes, indeed !
        Hi, daniel !
        People usually agree with a light heart, that we are a part of nature, it's become a working cliche. And it is correct, but it is not strongly enough put. Spirit is not a separate entity, arguably existing, spirit manifests itself in matter in nature in us, not in sequence but at once ! Devoted materialists deny spirit or demand evidence ; it's interesting how the evidence could possibly look like ?
        I am not ready to discuss Rudolf Steiner's philosophy after an hour google search, but even what i managed to get from there and from your posts pushed me to thinking. Steiner introduced the notion of “pure thinking” :
        ' it is not the dry, gray, or abstract experience people often mean by “thinking”. In what might seem a paradox, he says pure thinking is one with feeling and will in the depths of their reality; it is the power of love in its spiritual form."
        Thinking, in its purest form, is "the conscious experience, in pure spirit, of a purely spiritual content"
        It's a perfect realignment ! Pure thinking is a kind of ego dissolving thinking ; it's a grey thinking antidote.
        Maybe now i understand what Steiner meant by ' grace of thinking ', it's a kind of a dialogue with spirit, monologue, actually. Or maybe i am simply trying to fit it to my paradigm, it could be :)
        What do you think ?
        Thanks !
        • Jan 16 2013: Hi Natasha,

          Rudolf Steiner gave roughly 6000 lectures in the course of his lifetime. Many of them are in print now. ...

          ..... It's just to start reading ... ;-)

      • Jan 17 2013: Thank you !

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.