ex nihilo nihil fit


Now that I have your attention, we can continue with this discussion.

The question for today: is there immortality?

The followers of the Abrahamic religions have no stake in this discussion. If they believe their god created life out of nothing and further that birth is the beginning of life, it would be a contradiction for them to assert there is life, in any form, beyond the grave. Death to them must be the end of life.

So my godless friends, do you think there is immortality and f not why?

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About makagutu

As Onyango Makagutu I am Kenyan, as far as I am a man, I am a citizen of the world

72 thoughts on “ex nihilo nihil fit

  1. archaeopteryx1 says:

    They didn’t believe it either – immortality is a New Testament product, it’s the only way they could sell their story. A lot of things happened in a mere 300 years in Israel – the elite of a country that for millennia had been social recluses, were suddenly uplifted to Babylon, where they were exposed to the concepts of Zoroastrianism, and scarce 300 years later, they were exposed, again forcibly, to Greek thoughts and philosophies. At this point, the religion changed radically.

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  2. Assuming you mean unchanging and existing forever, I don’t think it can exist. there is either an end or a change, whether dramatic or a long slow alteration.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Aquileana says:

    I would say I believe in the inmortality of the soul… I don´t know if you have read Plato´s Dialogue “Phaedo”… There his teacher Socrates provides four arguments which might prove that the soul is immortal.
    I attach a link to a post on this issue. http://wp.me/p60vo-35b
    Note- The Theory of Recollection, meaning the second argument makes much sense to me. 🙂
    All the best to you!, Aquileana 😀

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    • makagutu says:

      Hey Aquileana,
      How have you been?
      I think I have but I can read it again
      What, if you allow, do you conceive the soul as?

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      • Aquileana says:

        I am doing fine, thank … Quite busy lately but all is well
        As to your question … well I think that as an invisible complex of atoms… something with no shape, weight or form… Probably something like air, so to speak

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    • Violet says:

      That was a fascinating read, thank you for linking it. While I always thought of Socrates as an atheist, he was apparently still filled with an incredible amount of magical thinking. As an atheist I don’t believe in a soul, immortality, or anything else supernatural.

      Liked by 2 people

      • makagutu says:

        Socrates didn’t repudiate the gods. How else would he believe the proclamation of the oracles of he didn’t believe in at least some of the state gods?
        I have no idea what a soul is. Maybe the problem could be how immortality is perceived

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Arkenaten says:

    Immortality? As The Ark? I sincerely doubt it!

    Worm food is my destiny,
    Mere fertilizer in the ground,
    And once I’m packed off for eternity,
    I shall longer be around.

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  5. Hariod Brawn says:

    You’re asking atheists if they have a soul? C’mon.

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    • Violet says:

      I actually have met a few atheists who think they have soul. This makes no sense to me whatsoever, but they’ve insisted you don’t have to have a belief in god to have a soul. Apparently, like Socrates, being an atheist doesn’t exempt you from magical thinking. Go figure.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Hariod Brawn says:

        . . . and this putative soul doesn’t transmigrate to some religious or quasi-religious cosmological realm? As you say Violet, go figure. o_O

        Liked by 1 person

        • Violet says:

          Why in fact yes, they did mention their souls might “go somewhere” after death, but they had no solid answers to where that might be. Next time I’ll use your phrase: is it a “quasi-religious cosmological realm?” 😀

          There is an old 80’s song I like called, “things that make you go Hummmm….”

          Liked by 1 person

          • Hariod Brawn says:

            I see, so this is a non-physical, and hence not space-occupying ‘entity’ which manages (somehow) to overcome those limitations in travelling through space and taking up residence at some distant location without ever . . . um . . . occupying space.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Violet says:

            I’m dying laughing here! Though they did not specifically mention their souls were spaceless (and likely timeless), and that the location of this “place” was also spaceless (and likely timeless), I’m pretty damn sure it was implied. 😀

            Too bad I didn’t think of any of these quick responses at the time this conversation took place. I just said, “hummmm….” and looked dubious, while they smiled and said I was too close-minded.

            Liked by 2 people

          • makagutu says:

            Haha Hariod.

            Liked by 1 person

      • makagutu says:

        I have read of atheists who are spiritual. I have tried to understand what they mean and failed with every attempt

        Liked by 1 person

      • Arkenaten says:

        I think they mean they have soul like James Brown, Otis Redding or Aretha Franklin. Or… these guys ….

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    • makagutu says:

      Not at all Hariod.
      I don’t think I have even alluded to a soul, something I don’t know what it is

      Liked by 1 person

  6. john zande says:

    Ooooh, nice argument! Never thought of that before. Infinitely beginning when?

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  7. archaeopteryx1 says:

    The Book of Daniel was written in two stages – one portion in Hebrew, likely during the Babylonian captivity (587-538 BCE) – the second portion in Aramaic (the Jews abandoned their native language of Hebrew in the short time they spent in Babylon, in favor of Aramaic), written, most say, about 167/168 BCE, the last of the canonical books of the OT to have been written. The Book of Daniel is the first time the idea of an afterlife is mentioned in Judaism, a fact that I attribute to the exposure of the Jews to the Persian religion of Zoroastrianism during the Babylonian Captivity.

    The concept then, at least among the Jews, arose in that relatively short time period between the Babylonian Captivity and the alleged birthdate of Yeshua. Even then, it wasn’t widely accepted – among the Sanhedrin (the Jewish governing body in Judea), comprised of Pharisees (blue-collar) and the Sadducees (intellectual and/or financial elite), only the Pharisees held to the belief, a division that persists throughout most of the civilized world today.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Nan says:

    As my avatar says, “We are all star stuff.” We came from the stars, we return to the stars. 😉

    From another perspective … the death of this body will revert to energy which, according to Newton, can be neither created nor destroyed. However, it can change from one form to another. Thus, some say “our” energy may one day be the spark that begins a >i>new life and thus, the cycle continues.

    Do we describe this as immortality?

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    • archaeopteryx1 says:

      Of course that’s the only form of immortality there is, but I believe that those who speak of it, mean one in which conscious memory is retained.

      It is also said that we live on in the memories of those we leave behind, but my Grandfather was a man I loved dearly and I have wonderful memories of him, but I have passed these memories on to my children, and now, to my grandchildren, but they mean far less to them than they did to me. I doubt they will pass them on to their own offspring, and consequently, when I go, my Grandfather will go with me and everything that he was to me, will be lost forever.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Nan says:

        Just to be clear, from my personal perspective, I do not believe conscious memory is retained in any way. IF energy is “passed on” in this way, I believe it would be totally neutral.

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        • archaeopteryx1 says:

          And I’m not disagreeing, just stating what I have observed to be the general consensus when it comes to defining the word.

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      • makagutu says:

        I will say in my defence, I didn’t mean one in which conscious memory is retained.

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    • john zande says:

      Seems somewhat appropriate here, Nan:

      “You want a physicist to speak at your funeral. You want the physicist to talk to your grieving family about the conservation of energy, so they will understand that your energy has not died. You want the physicist to remind your sobbing mother about the first law of thermodynamics; that no energy gets created in the universe, and none is destroyed. You want your mother to know that all your energy, every vibration, every Btu of heat, every wave of every particle that was her beloved child remains with her in this world. You want the physicist to tell your weeping father that amid energies of the cosmos, you gave as good as you got.

      And at one point you’d hope that the physicist would step down from the pulpit and walk to your brokenhearted spouse there in the pew and tell him that all the photons that ever bounced off your face, all the particles whose paths were interrupted by your smile, by the touch of your hair, hundreds of trillions of particles, have raced off like children, their ways forever changed by you. And as your widow rocks in the arms of a loving family, may the physicist let her know that all the photons that bounced from you were gathered in the particle detectors that are her eyes, that those photons created within her constellations of electromagnetically charged neurons whose energy will go on forever.

      And the physicist will remind the congregation of how much of all our energy is given off as heat. There may be a few fanning themselves with their programs as he says it. And he will tell them that the warmth that flowed through you in life is still here, still part of all that we are, even as we who mourn continue the heat of our own lives.

      And you’ll want the physicist to explain to those who loved you that they need not have faith; indeed, they should not have faith. Let them know that they can measure, that scientists have measured precisely the conservation of energy and found it accurate, verifiable and consistent across space and time. You can hope your family will examine the evidence and satisfy themselves that the science is sound and that they’ll be comforted to know your energy’s still around. According to the law of the conservation of energy, not a bit of you is gone; you’re just less orderly. ”

      -Aaron Freeman

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    • makagutu says:

      Why not describe it as immortality?
      I am not asking whether Makagutu survives his death, that would be egoistic.

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  9. archaeopteryx1 says:

    A bit off-topic, but I found this well worth a 4-minute watch —

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  10. […] “Mak” wrote a post related to immortality, which generated a number of comments. A recent post by +Charles, although initially on another […]

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  11. Since you are a fan of Mary Shelley’s novel, I think it only fitting to include a short work by her husband regarding what people leave after death.

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    • makagutu says:

      Have you read his in defence of atheism?
      All that is left is faceless, decay and long stretches of sand

      Liked by 1 person

      • I just read his Necessity of Atheism, right after I got halfway through Acts. I wish the author(s) of Acts had asked for divine revelation of Mr. Shelley’s work before penning their own piece. Could have saved so much time, effort, and misery.

        If you don’t mind my asking, why the focus on death lately?

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  12. gpicone says:

    I don’t think there is yet…but there will be.

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