I like my friend Anthony’s take below.. I’ve never been comfortable either at a emotional or intellectual level with the idea of the dualistic ghost in the machine- temple of the soul perspective.. even if that might inspire some people to better care for themselves it still implies a degradation that the body is not more than a vehicle to someday be discarded so a immaterial supernatural soul can be set free and or move on. I don’t buy it nor do I like it. So yes, being informed by both Buddhism and Naturalism I’ve always doubted the existence of some ‘soul’ within, like a ghost in the machine. Rather I think of soul as more a metaphor for our dynamic ever evolving essential nature unfolding from moment to moment, wholly rooted in physicality. I feel the nurture and expression of this in one’s life is spirit. Thus to empower and enjoy one’s body, i.e. physicality/nature (for we don’t ‘have’ a body like some possession of the soul, we ARE a body) is both affirmation and celebration of the gift of existence. .. as but a brief temporary manifestation of stardust.
“Take another step further. What if your body is your soul and it’s your spirit that shines through? What if your spirit is none other than your feelings? Then we can no longer deny the value of the gift of this fragile being! And what if the boundary of my body is in some profound sense, all of nature? How would that change our relationships with each other and to nature?” – Anthony Bogart