Would Plato and Aristotle agree with the postulate that a snapper’s soul is its genome ? Genomes carry all the coded traits of a living thing, and one description compares it to a set of 5000 books of 300 pages each in one set, documenting the unique specifics of each and all of the cells of the organism. Therefore there is both mathematical precision and uniqueness in this coded signature, and in a sense the precise mathematical and structural description is “ harmony” of mathematical precision.
And yet, Plato debunks the idea that the soul can be compared to the harmony of a musical instrument. Plato argues that the soul exists ahead of the body, is not subject to levels of tuning, and if the harmony theory were true, then all souls were as good as each other—in the manner all instruments stood on its own particular merits of perfection. More, the soul controls the body which cannot be similar to an instrument, which is controlled by the player.
In this, Plato clearly sustains the Theory of Recollection, in which the soul is seen in immortal existence, existing long before one’s physical life, and would outlive one’s death. From the point of Plato, the genome of an organism could not be definitive of the soul, which ante-existed the physical body. The genome describes the physical body with mathematical and geometrical singularity but it has no direct reference, or shows no proof of resemblance to a supra-terrestrial concept of “soul”.
Plato would interpret the concept of genome within the context of universal reality in terms of its function as a useful, precise description or code of the physical vehicle which the soul used as its instrument of terrestrial presence—the body. But genome has no role whatsoever for the ‘soul” with its fundamental role of “recollecting” harmony from mankind’s eternal repository– the Creator’s creation of harmony.
Plato believes that the soul is the link of humanity to the creation of the Creator, and that universal memory of harmony experienced by the soul in previous pre-body existence, is what makes possible mankind’s appreciation of music– and harmony, which is an attribute of music. Hence the appreciation of harmony is one of the traits of the soul . The soul can “impart” such appreciation because it had experienced or “drawn” like appreciation from prior existence. In contrast, the genome itself is impermanent.
Appreciation of harmony could not have emanated from a genetic code. For Plato, it could not be the genetic code that makes possible one’s appreciation of harmony, but the soul’s connection and retrieval of this sense from the prior existence of the soul. Aristotle would have been more receptive to the idea that a snapper’s genome could at least be descriptive of the soul, and could even agree that it contains a descriptive formula of the uniqueness of an organism. Predictably, harmonic appreciation could be imbedded in the genetic code.
Although Aristotle believes in a concept of soul as the driving or life force of an organism, he believes that the soul only co-exists mortally with the physical body as part of the totality of an individual organism. So once that organism dies, the soul dies with it. The soul, a co-terminus reality of the physical body, could not function as a mystical connection with the Creator’s universal and immortal divine repository of harmonic appreciation. As for the physical reality of harmony, Aristotle would have argued that it was perceived by the senses and “interpreted” or learned by an empty but receptive brain.
Aristotle would not have argued that the soul has had a pre-existent sense of harmony prior to existence, while Plato would argue that harmony was gifted by a Creator, from which all souls would only have to “recollect” their share of harmonic sense. Therefore, appreciation of harmony or music for instance, is a development of the soul, from the point of view of Aristotle. From the point of view of Plato, appreciation of harmony is a recollection or retrieval of pre-existent appreciation of the Creator’s universal harmony which the soul had experienced prior to terrestrial existence.