Cannot prove nor disprove a soul.

Date: Fri Jan 21 2000 - 00:10:56 MST

In a message dated 1/20/00 2:28:12 PM Pacific Standard Time, writes:

<< Some people think they insult themselves if they accept the
 truth. We indeed are nothing more than a complex arrangement
 of physical properties and their effects.>>

To 'The Atheist from Denver'

Clint, what you espouse or may not be true. You cannot prove it, and neither
can I! I used to be a 'proseletizing atheist' when I was in high school.
I used to be totally blown away why anyone could believe in a 'God', or an
'Afterlife', as it was all so illogical, so emotional, so unscientific--- so
insulting to an intelligent person.

However, maturity sets in, and most of us become aware of a 'paradign shift'
as we get older--- when we marry, have children, and otherwise live out the
years interacting with other people. Its particularly hard to stay
unemotional and spew about things that we are just a complex batch of
molecules, when you watch a loved one waste away in the throws of a
particularly nasty [metastatic] carcinoma.

Clint, I would bet that you'd have one hell of a time being as logically
detached as you appear to be, if you had the gut-wrenching episode of
watching a person you love, die a slow, very painful death. Except for one's
own thoughts near their own death, holding the hand of someone who has just
passed away make you start wondering about the question of a soul, and that
the 'dearly departed' may still, hopefully in some form, be perhaps alive and
well. Including in our thoughts the possibility of a soul, substantially
mitigates the tremendous emotional and psychic pain we 'mere humans' have
after the death of a close friend, relative, or child.

Clint, we are not unemotional robots, where every facet of our day-by-day
existence must or even should be based on logical constructs. Being an
analytical computer 'in the flesh' makes for a better computational scientist
or mathematician, not necessarily a better human. In the same venue, whether
one is an atheist, or a theist, or whether we are or are not merely a
'complex arrangement of physical properties and their effects' is probably the
 least important thing in the world. But, how we relate to others, family or
friends, on an emotional level, is perhaps one of the most important
behaviors we can have.

Ed Reifman

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