The other day I had a sad thought...

Volpone

Zombie Hunter
#1
My dog is getting older. Pushing 10, she still likely has quite a few good years left in her, but she isn't as fast, energetic, or alert as she used to be. Now by the book in Catholicism as I understand it, only humans go too Heaven. Of course dogs are pretty cool and wonderful and there's that movie, "All Dogs Go to Heaven," so I look forward to seeing my dog again after she leaves me. Because she most definitely has a soul.

I'm getting ahead of myself. I personally believe there is a God, but he's not Allah or Yaweh or Jesus or Vishnu or any of the other entities we worship. I think God is too big and complex for the human brain to comprehend. Shit, "he" might be a race of aliens that used gravity to steer asteroids into the course of our planet over the eons. Anyhow, you know how, say Proctor & Gamble, has like 9 different brands of toothpaste or laundry soap? It's so they can position their brands to appeal to different niches. Same with God. All the different "Gods" out there are us, trying to understand God and his message on the context of our particular society and mores.

Furthermore, we are all meat machines. A electrobiochemical machine that carries around our brain and allows it to interact with its environment. Furthermore, we aren't our brain either. We are the series of experiences we've collected and stored in our brain and how we respond to our environment. That's what Christians call a "soul." If you belive in ghosts or an afterlife or both, that soul can continue on after the body has failed. Shoot, even the glowy energy beings folks like Captain Kirk encounter are a soul that is able to function without a physical body.

Here's the disquieting part: My dog most certainly has a soul. But what if the reason Catholics say animals don't go to heaven is that a dog's brain isn't advanced enough to house enough of the right experiences and development to reach that critical mass of being able to go on after the body dies? What if all that my dog was is lost after her body fails, like Spock, going into the reactor (before we found out he mind-melded with Bones)? :(
 
#2
The way you're describing god is basically the Deist interpretation. There is a higher power, and all the various gods humans have come up with are various cultures' attempts to explain what most humans are sensing. And of course, several cultures' attempts to exploit that sensation in order to control parts of their populations, which takes something awesome and smears the shit of human corruption all over it, but I digress...

As for the soul-and-afterlife part, can't say I expect there to be anything to that. My interpretation is, once the data (accumulated experiences) and programming (personality) is gone, that's it. Movie's over, no sequel. Best enjoy the show while it's playing.
 

Volpone

Zombie Hunter
#4
I just figured it out. A bit. Even if my dog's brain isn't sufficiently developed to get to heaven, I can bring her in inside my *own* brain. And really, I need her in heaven more than she needs to be there. She's had a pretty good and full life right here on earth.
 
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