The Platonic, or Neo-Platonic idea of 'soul,' as is still commonly held by a good number of people yet, is a false notion. This is what nature teaches us.
Let me break this quote down:
1) The Platonic, or Neo-Platonic, idea of ‘soul’ (a view commonly head by a good number of people)
True enough this is a very common view particularly if you define people as all of mankind. I would have to say the vast majority would hold this view.
Platonic Greece was pivotal for the separation of Western and Eastern thought. Plato, Aristotle, and Socrates each defined man holistically from their respective points of view. Their philosophies have been passed down through the ages to create Western culture and are foundational to our being and essence. Because it is the body of knowledge that is our inheritance and human “fabric”, we believe it implicitly. To throw it out is to unmake us and destroy our culture.
2) False notion
This is false only for those who have rejected this foundational point, but not false to the vast majority. A person who believes this is false has rejected the foundations of Western thought and has shifted their point of origin to the Age of Enlightenment and reductionism. Such a person could be classified as a modernist. From such a point of view I too would agree with you that the “Platonic, Neo-Platonic, soul” is non-existent. This would be a logical and obvious conclusion.
But now in an area of post-modernism we see the rise of our Platonic roots welling up in the masses. Obviously our Platonic origins are manifesting itself, and pushing against the later modernist view (a natural thing for culture to do).
The number of people who hold then modernist view will dwindle in time as generations of post-modern scientists and thinkers take control of research and the body of knowledge held for specific topics.
3) Nature teaches us
It is said by many fundamentalist biblical scholars that the best way to interpret the Bible is by the Bible. I would state that a fundamentalist scientist would say, “The best way to interpret nature is by nature.” I might not totally agree with either statement, but I do think that using scripture to understand nature makes as much sense as using nature to understand scripture. I could believe that there are ways in which each refers to the other, but as for giving an explanation about the other I would say that this is much harder to prove.
Nature is nature and science studies nature.
Scripture is scripture and religion studies scripture.
Mixing the two is bad for both. The likelihood for theologians believing they are scientists and scientist believing they are theologians is too great. Since information is power (a commodity many of us crave) allowing scientist or theologians to control that much information would be bad for the masses. This statement I believe has been proven throughout history time and again. One only has to look at the foundations of history’s notorious purgings to see the consequences.
While its unreasonable to expect a scientist to ignore their religion as well as a theologian to ignore their nature I would hope that wise scientists understand what is nature and what is religion, and well as wise theologians understand what is religion and what is natural. And I believe when we have wise scientists and theologians the information provided to the masses will be less corrupted.
Foundationally I believe we all need to know the truth, but unless we work together as a community with love and respect what we share with each other is something much less beneficial (in effect evil).