The Triune Nature of Humans
According to the triune idea of humans, we consist of three main essences: body, soul, and spirit. These three are mentioned often in the Bible in distinct situations.
The body is our physical existence. We experience the world through our bodies. We see each other's bodies. This is straightforward.
The spirit is our spiritual existence. It is what enables us to talk with God and to have an existence beyond the physical world.
The soul connects the two. Unlike the others, it doesn't exist in either the physical or spiritual sense. It is a philosophical idea of the continuity of existence.
When a 90-year-old man recognizes himself in a photograph of himself when he was 10, what makes them the same person? All of his cells have changed. You can hardly say they think alike. They are "different people" in almost every way. They share little in common.
However, the continuity of existence remains. You can follow a continuous thread of existence throughout his lifetime. You can watch as he ages, and gradually changes to who he is today.
This is the soul. It is our identity. It is the continuity of our own existence. It is the thread through our lives.
Animals can also be said to have souls. You can follow a continuous thread in their existences as well. However, they do not have spirits. They have no way to connect to the spiritual realm. They are stuck in the physical.
When we die, our bodies die, but our spirits remain. Our spirits hold onto the continuity of our existence and bring it beyond the physical.
In the resurrection, the duality of the soul and spirit is rejoined into the triune nature of body, soul, and spirit, as we were initially created.
Just some thoughts. I'm willing to clarify these points and to be corrected by appropriate scripture references.
Posting this was a perfect example of Cunningham's Law in action.
> Cunningham's Law states "the best way to get the right answer on the internet is not to ask a question; it's to post the wrong answer."
(I'm not totally convinced I'm completely wrong, but I'm going to read more to understand the concepts better)
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