Is immortality just a rationalization to overcome the fear of consciousness coming to an end?

We really do not have any justification to believe that our “souls” are going to live forever because what we deem our “soul” is evidently the mechanics of our brain at work. Take away the organ known as the brain, and conciousness ceases to be. Not only that, but a corpse (along with understandings of the brain) should be enough evidence in itself to establish a complete end to consciousness.

I do not believe that our consciousness carries over after death. It is interesting to me that we can recognize a direct correlation to our brains regarding consciousness and life, but then reject that at death to fulfill some fantasy that is contrary to the evident.

Of what evidence do you speak?

This reminds me of an early psychological experiment. This dude had a mouse run a maze and learn it so he could run it real quick. Then the dude cut out a portion of the mouse’s brain where he thought the memory was. The mouse ran the maze just as quick. So he cut out a bigger portion, but the mouse still ran the maze fine. He cut out a bigger and bigger portion and eventually the mouse couldn’t move. As long as he could move he remembered that damn maze.

On the other hand there isn’t really evidence for immortality, even the evidence for post-mortem surviveal doesn’t say a thing for immortality. I think people belive it because of simple induction- I was conscious yesterday, and the day before, and so on…

Immortal soul? Give science a few hundred more years and we will have immortal bodies!

There is some deductive evidence (or at least discussion of such) for immortality.

It’s a big ol’ pickle. Even though there’s no evidence for your immortality, there’s no evidence for your mortality, either. Either way, you HAVE TO pick a side on the issue, and either way you’re using faith.

Sucky, eh?

No evidence for your mortality? I would say a corpse is pretty evident, but that’s just me. :wink:

With what is evident, such as our understanding of how our brain functions and dead bodies, it is most probable that our consciousness comes to an end.

This doesn’t count as evidence? :confused:

I don’t have a corpse… do you?

You’re not dead yet, bud.

Learn thy fallacies.

Check out what I wrote about the possibility of immortality through SCIENTIFIC means.

It’s more of an “immortality problem”, but the idea is that you should discard your own immortality just because you see other people die.

Well my issue is with all this, how supposedly the brain works. Like the example I give, the mouses memory (a large part of identity) was preserved as long as the mouse had enough brain to function.

Where is the evidence for one’s identity being stored in the brain? I think we pretend our science is more advanced then it is yet, maybe?

You mean a fallacy like argumentum ad ignorantiam? Since no one can prove we DON’T like forever, then we live forever. :confused:

Gee, maybe, just maybe the reason why no one can prove we don’t live forever is well, because they are dead or conscious no more. Who would of made the connection?

Let’s see; we witness people dying and their consciousness coming to an end as far as we can honestly observe, we have empirical evidence that the brain is essential to our consciousness, and yet this isn’t evident enough that consciousness comes to an end?

Let’s look at all of the overwhelming evidence that counters this? Doppelgangers :confused:

And yet how can you know your own mortality if you are not yet dead? How can you assume your mortal when you simeltaneously meet all the criterion for immortality…Being alive…

I see people dying all around me, and yet I survive. Me being alive while other dies is as much of a testiment to immortality as it is to mortaility…

HOw does one know he’s immortal? He lives forever… How does one know he lives forever? He is currently alive…

Thanks Nihil. That’s exactly my point.

Just because I am not dead, that doesn’t mean I can’t recognize all the people dying around me. If your consciousness comes to an end at death, then how could you “know” your dead? You can’t. You are not concious. Arguing that since you are not dead and can never recognize your death because your concious brain is no longer functionable doesn’t mean that your consciousness will never end when your brain stops functioning.

Being poetic doesn’t doesn’t override the obvious.

How does one know his consciousness has ended? He cannot because he is not conscious to recognize it… but that sure has heck doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.

It’s not that obvious you dolt.

God looks around and sees people dying, how does he know he’s not mortal?

Could you ever know that you’re immortal?


Then how can you know that you’re mortal?

You’re one or the other, so choose.

Why yes, it seems very improbable that you or I are immortal, but … if you read what I wrote, you’d see that the possibility exists.

Well you can recognize people dying around you when and only when you are alive.

Explain to me where I said anything remotely close to that, and I won’t think you’re a complete moron.

I hate poets

Are you arguing with me or with yourself?

Gee, I have been called a “dolt” and a “moron.” I guess this is going to be a mature and civil discussion.

After considering your perspective, I think I understand the misunderstanding between our views. You two are imposing “immortality” from a psychological perspective, while I am from a sociological perspective.

If I am on the right track, you see “immortality” only from your own perspective in which is a synonym for life and since you cannot actually experience “mortality” which is a synonym for "death, then hence you are “immortal.”
If that is what you are getting at, then I can understand that and it is a respectable view. Personally, we cannot consider our mortality (or death) because we are not conscious to do so, hence the only thing we can consciously experience is immortality.

Now I am looking at it not just from my own perspective, but to those around me. If someone I know while I am consciously alive (or immortal) dies, then they are “mortal” or “dead.” My argument doesn’t derive just from a personal narrative but encompasses what else is going on with the human race. And not only that, with the evidence that takes place we can imply what “will” happen. It is obvious that even though I may be “immortal” now, based on what has happened with other “immortals,” then I “will” one day be “mortal.” Just like I may not have gray hair now, I WILL one day have gray hair.

I think our perspectives just differ, but let’s at least have a little bit of dignity for opposing views and edit out the namecalling please. Thanks.

Sorry, I have a thing against Guest accounts. I had no clue who wrote that, and as such, I got upset and lost however few manners I have.

Yeah… almost.

I am not looking at immortality as merely life and mortality as merely death, but more so immortality as the impossibility of me not being able to judge myself any further, and mortality as being the possibility of me not being able to judge myself any further.

Whether or not I’m alive is not only not in question, it’s a given for BOTH situations. Why? My mortality and immortality wouldn’t really matter much if I was in the state of death, would it?

Ahhh, but this is still not logically sound. If a man goes up to you and says he’s immortal, how would he go about proving it to you? If you stab him and he heals, can you suffocate him? Can you throw him into the sun and he still stand with such bravado? Even if you SEE him die, how do you know he wont come back in some way (see: Highlander series). You take on faith that everyone around you is mortal, as well. It’s inductively true, deductively false.

Look at the irony in that statement. “My argument doesn’t derive just from personal narrative but encompasses what else is going on with the human race.”

“Your argument” implies “your perspective”. “What else that goes on in the human race” is only what you “observe” to go on in the human race.

And yes, I know this conversation is somewhat futile and an exercise of mental masturbation.

Well, again, your definition of immortal is not right at all and not the same one I was using.

Yup. Sign in next time. I don’t like anonymity. It’s cowardace 90% of the time.

Hi Enigma,

If immortal has the same relation to mortal as immaterial has to material, it means that the immortal are not mortal, and have no mortality. This is spoken of God: “the blessed and only potentate, the King of the kings and Lord of the lords, who only is having immortality, dwelling in light unapproachable, whom no one of men did see, nor is able to see, to whom is honour and might age-during! Amen.” (1 Timothy 6:15-16)

It is also a hope spoken of the resurrection: “we shall be changed:for it behoveth this corruptible to put on incorruption, and this mortal to put on immortality; and when this corruptible may have put on incorruption, and this mortal may have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the word that hath been written, ‘The Death was swallowed up—to victory; where, O Death, thy sting? where, O Hades, thy victory?’” (1 Corinthians 15:55-54)

I wouldn’t see the use of the word in the NT as an attempt to overcome fear in a defensive sense, but rather in an offensive sense, spurning believers on to keeping the faith. But in that sense it is also extremely materialistic, expecting immortality to resemble mortality in an endless way. I get visions of an old man as God and lots of children surrounding him in heaven, playing on the village green :wink:

It is a hope of something different after death - but what?

Of course our brain has millions of imput sources of which the most are filtered out and few get put to memory. The accumulation of memory allows people to function without cognitive abilities over a short time without this deficit becoming apparent. But that all has to do with physical existence.

What is incredibly sturdy - even with Alzheimer, is our emotional intelligence, which can be used to guide people with dementia for example. Now, if this emotional intelligence is the soul (another word for soul is psyche and psychotic afflictions are personality disorders) what is the Spirit or Pneuma?

The Spirit is said to be “the breath of God” breathed into man at creation making him more than an animal - awareness some say, intelligence say others. Now intelligence has a dependancy upon memory which we have located in the brain - we will probably never agree to what it is.

What is fairly certain, is the fact that the “human animal” aspires to more and achieves little of it. He is most promising and most dangerous. He is both crown and base of nature. I think this is the Mystery that is seen to be akin to the Mystery of Life in the universe - and possibly they have the same origin.


I appreciate the input, but isn’t it quite possible that we are theorizing in regards to something that needs no explanation?

I mean we witness a person dying. They are not animate and they are in fact dead. Sure, we may not be dead … yet, but from what we can witness, this is going to be our fate as well.

When we merge what is evident as far as we can tell with our understandings of how the brain functions, then why can’t we just be content that consciousness just comes to an end?

That’s pretty much my point. It is of my opinion, that we go to great links to theorize beyond death and refuse to accept that death is simply the finality of consciousness. As far as we can tell, this is what is evident based upon what we witness around us. Of course we cannot witness it ourselves because our conciousness comes to an end, but we can witness it in others quite clearly. Why is it so hard to accept that consciousness will one day end?