The growth of your visible body can be seen as a steady conversion of that which is not part of your body (such as food) into part of your body (such as cells ). The growth of your spirit, light body or etheric body or whatever need not be different. In latter, the food is the unseen aether, chi or prana or whatever.
Let us begine by supposing that your consciousness is caused by your visible body. Then what does it cause your particular awareness? In other words why did your body generate the awareness of Jane and not Janet? As you will see, this is the crucial question that leads to understanding of soul! Contrary to the popular belief, a soul can be as well understood as the body, and as un-derstandable as the latter. Did the exact type of matter formed your awareness? Of course not. If you swap an atom in Jane's head with another similar atom in Janet's neither of the two will loose their awarenesses. But this means that we can go on to swap atoms between their heads until we exchange their entire brains without exchanging their awareness. So what does it cause the particular awareness? We will see.
The a priori exclusion of the visible body from 'soul' and immortality is also erroneous. Same is the insistance that an 'immaterial' entity is absolutely necessary for the survival of consciousness after death. People jumped into these conclusions without thinking extra carefully. Then they form doctrines about 'the immaterial'. However, if we begin by supposing that awareness is generated by the visible body, we are still naturaly lead to an idea if soul and immortality, that is even more understandable!
Your body crew from a single cell all the way to the huge object. Before your cell divided, that cell was indispensable to you. In other words if that cell died, you would have died. However once you grew significantly, that single cell became dispensable. In fact it died long ago and yet you did not die! So what it takes to generate your awareness changes from time to time. This means that if your awareness is generated by your visible body, it must be possible to convert matter from a 'not your awareness' state into 'your awareness'. This happens when the matter that is in the 'not you' state comes close to the matter that is in the 'you' state. It is much the same way a piece of iron turns into the 'magnetized' state when it comes into contact with the already magnetised material. In otherwords magnetism grows.
This leads to an harmonious understanding of growth. The body crows by turning the 'not cells' matter in the surrounding into the cells. All that is neaded is for the right matter to be there. Same will be true for the 'growth of awareness'. This solves the difficult question of the identity of Janet even after we exchange her whole body with another body. This leads to a different understanding of incarnation, one that does not require an 'immaterial' entity to actually move from body to body. Your awareness simply propergates through bodies just like how the to and fro motion is propegated through a material in what we call 'waves'. But things will be orders more interesting when we consider the unseen, all pervading medium that surrounds our bodies. A different understanding of a disembodied spirit will unfold.
Notice also that we easily do away with the absurdity of two bodies generating the same awareness so that a single person seems, to himself, to be in two places all at once! The awareness is another dimension of matter that is irreducible to the other properties eg shape, charge etc. A body that appears to be perfectly similar to yours, is still not you because we excluded awareness when judging similarities between objects sinse we think that awareness is not an intrinsic property of matter. However the other body can still become you, should it get in contact with your body. So there is no 'bi-location'. Thus we see that a proper understanding of how your body generates your particular awareness naturally leads to possibility of reincarnation! Scientists don't drive this up to its end. They merely assert that 'the body causes awareness' and assumes that this does away with any notion of 'soul', 'reincarnation' or 'afterlife'. They are totally wrong!! As wrong as the people who, not understanding gravity, insists that a round earth necessarily means that we will 'fall down' if we travel far to the other side of the globe. Gravity is to awareness in this case.
In physics we have come to understand that the space that surrounds our bodies is not empty. Rather it is filled by mediums that can potentially generate all the that we see around. If awareness is the property of matter, it is also the property of 'empty space'. So to understand how we can survive after death, we realy needed not to say that consciousness is caused by something else other than the brain. This was bad logic that have needlessly made 'soul' the more irrelevant the more we understand the brain! Alternatively, we could say that our owareness can 'incarnate' into the 'empty space' in much the same way energy 'discarnates' from the lamps and 'incarnates' into the 'empty space' as light. In other words for energy to exist even after we putt off the lamp, we need not to posit that the energy in the lamp is generated by something 'immaterial'. We only need to say that the energy is transferreable to something unseen, that surrounds the lamp.
As we have seen, all it took your cells to transfer the 'you' into another matter, as you grew was for the matter to come in contact with your cells. We say you grew into the matter. But 'empty space' also have hidden properties of matter; therefore it has hidden properties of your awareness as well. Sinsce your body is always in contact with the unseen you grow into the unseen. Once your body grows to encompass the unseen, the visible body becomes dispensable just like the single cell than once was all that you were latter became dispensable.