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In many religious, philosophical and mythological traditions, there is a belief in the incorporeal essence of a living being called the soul.
Soul or psyche (Greek: \"psyühē\", of \"psychein\", \"to breathe\") are the mental abilities of a living being: reason, character, feeling, consciousness, memory, perception, thinking, etc.
Depending on the philosophical system, a soul can either be mortal or immortal. In Judeo-Christianity, only human beings have immortal souls (although immortality is disputed within Judaism and may have been influenced by Plato,). For example, the Catholic theologian Thomas Aquinas attributed \"soul\" (anima) to all organisms but argued that only human souls are immortal. Other religions (most notably Hinduism and Jainism) hold that all biological organisms have souls (atman, jiva) and a 'vital principle' (prana), as did Aristotle. Some teach that even non-biological entities (such as rivers and mountains) possess souls. The latter belief is called animism.
Greek philosophers, such as Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle, understood that the soul (ψυχή psūchê) must have a logical faculty, the exercise of which was the most divine of human actions. At his defense trial, Socrates even summarized his teaching as nothing other than an exhortation for his fellow Athenians to excel in matters of the psyche since all bodily goods are dependent on such excellence (Apology 30a–b).
Anima mundi is the concept of a \"world soul\" connecting all living organisms on planet Earth.
"I can respect a _soul_, sir," replied Emma, warmly, -- "a soul made in the image of God, though it were sunk in the very depths of pollution and wretchedness; and so can the 'Great and Holy One,' Mr. Sliver, or he never would have sent his Son to redeem the world."
It is of the highest importance to the developing soul to unfold into a realization of this relationship and unity, _for when this conception is once fully established the soul is enabled to rise above certain of the lower planes, and is free from the operation of certain laws that bind the undeveloped soul_.
For it is the soul which manifests as _body_, which thinks as _mind_, which feels and loves as _heart_, and which is what it is -- though not perhaps what it really or finally is -- as _soul_.
It may be well to fall into the usage of ordinary speech, and speak of that which survives death as the _soul_, so long as we keep in mind what is really meant, viz., that it is the soul _united with the spirit_ which survives death.
"No soul, Excellenza; rest assured, no _soul_ -- Again the mortar."
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