Douglas Hofstadter is one of my favourite authors and thinkers. This interview with him is one of the best elucidations of his thinking that I have seen.
A small quote:
I used the word “soul” because, out of all the various words that one might use — “consciousness”, “intentionality”, “mind”, and so forth — it is the one that I think most evocatively suggests the deep mystery of first-person existence that any philosophically inclined person must wonder about many times during their life. But I think that the first-person pronoun “I” is just as evocative a word for the same thing. I could also have used the word “spirit”, I guess, but that, too, would have seemed loaded with religious flavor to many readers.