RE: BIBLE/BRAIN: Quantum computers

Sweitzer, Dennis (
Fri, 06 Sep 96 09:59:00 EST

Scott wrote, in response to Bill,>>>>

[Regarding the antenna brain model of conciousness, and of Star Trek]

>>> could reconcile it [Star Trek] equally well with something like
your "antenna model". That is, the transporter merely reconstructs the
appropriately tuned antenna, while the unique nonmaterial spirit is "beamed
along" in the stream and "resumes broadcasting" when the antenna is
reconstructed. .....

Aha. For purposes of discussion, I accuse you [or somebody :-) ] of
recreating the spirit world along the lines of the material.

Why would the transporter have to "beam along" one's unique non-material
spirit? Unless you assume that the non-material spirit has a time-space
location in the material world!

If the antenna hypothesis is that your brain is uniquely tuned to your
spirit--in a 1 to 1 relationship, and that the spirit is non-material (not
merely invisible to the material world), the mind/antenna can be anywhere.

Indeed, if the spirit world is outside of the time-space continuum, then
strictly speaking, one's spirit is everywhere, (or nowhere?), and one's
brain/antenna is merely tuned to it. Physical location of the body is

This explains another mystery about Star Trek ;-^) : Why not set the
transport to "copy" and run off a few dozen copies of key people? Under the
antenna/brain model, the copies would be tuned to the same spirit, resulting
in "multiple-body" disorder (analagous to "multiple-personality" disorder,
in which the body is tuned to multiple spirits). (Hollywood, here I

[One must admit that Star Trek does provide some fertile ground for thought

This has been one thing that bothers me about much of Christian
pop-theology, namely, that we--often without a second thought--recreate the
spiritual world in terms of the material world. It be the crude, like
astronomers "seeing" heaven through a telescope, or Russian geologists
"hearing" the cries of hell's occupants in a borehole. It can be popular,
like constructing heirarchies (bureaucracies?) of devils and angels along
earthly geographic division. Or it can be theologically accepted [...I
can't quickly think of any good examples...]

Regarding dichotomy (dividing a person into body & soul) versus trichotomy
(dividing a person into body, soul, and spirit), it seems unnecessarily
complicated to divide us into three. Afterall, some scriptures imply a four
way division.

And maybe it is unnecessary to divide us into two parts as well. I can see
how monochotomy would have merit. Namely, that the eternal nature of us is
entirely due to God's memory of our neural pathways and his reconstruction
of the same on the judgement day (or whenever) in a new, non-biological
body. (No, I haven't read Tipler's book, but I understand that his theory
is a secular version of this).

This is similar to the previous discussion.
> > > *BTW--I don't believe in an *eternal* soul. I believe God foreknows
us, but i don't believe that entails pre-existance--and I don't know of any
Scripture that teaches that human souls have an existance prior to the womb.

> > Why should we assume God "en-souls" the body?

>I didn't assume that, or even say that...I merely said we can't say when
the soul begins. Is it, as you imply, at conception? Is there a "unique
begetting" of a child's spirit from those of its parents? Or is there a
unique and individual creative act for each person's spirit? Is the soul's
beginning dependent on there being enough brain to produce it? I can't
say, nor do I know of anyone down here who can say.

> The example from nature is that life originates and grows. I believe
when the physical body begins, the soul (and spirit) begins and must grow.
The spirit and the soul of the child is a unique conjunction and a unique
begetting from the spirits and the souls of the parents, just like the body
of the child is unique conjunction of the bodies of the parents. Of course,
this would mean that life begins at conception and that abortion would be
sinful at any point.

So the monochotomist would argue, using Occam's razor (or his axe), Why
duplicate the material (combining the parents genetic material) on the
spiritual level (conjoining the parental spirits)? Just accept that the
spirit is "a ghost in the machine" which is very precious in the sight of
God, in that he nutures & cares for it, and will recreate it (the
non-material patterns) one day after our flesh has rotted away.

Anyway, far be it from me to argue for monochotomy or for a "Christian
materialist" view point. But it is intriguing, and there does seem to be
some scriptural support.

We may not have solved any of the mysteries of the universe, but at least we
solved one from "Star Trek"! ;-)

Grace & peace,

Dennis Sweitzer