The Immaterial by Radioactive Toast

"...Surely a historic day by all accounts. I almost imagine those nineteenth century rationalists are cheering from their graves, which, considering what's just been announced, may not be all that farfetched."

Diane turned up the radio as the sound of blaring horns nearby threatened to drown out her program. The traffic on the freeway was congested like the arteries of a someone who needed a triple bypass, so she wasn't terribly concerned about paying attention to the road. The news of the day was far more fascinating... Indeed, it was far more relevant.z

"The researchers involved have said that although their results are preliminary, every repeated analysis and test has yielded the same results. So far, research teams from at least six different universities in the US, Japan, France, and Russia have confirmed the initial tests practically to a tee according to the reports I've been hearing. Yes, folks, it's actually happened. No, it's not some crazy ectoplasm theory; this is actual physics."

The news was still quite shocking to Diane; it seemed more like a wild drug induced hallucination than reality. Science, of all things, had just proved the existence of the soul.

It was all over the airwaves by now; she had only woken up a few hours prior, but apparently just after she had gone to bed the previous night, the report was announced by some scientists in Australia. With the instant communication and the internet these days it spread like wildfire; everyone was talking about it. Now that she thought about it, everyone else she saw this morning, even other drivers stuck with her in traffic were going along with stunned looks, wide eyed and blinking like bewildered kindergarteners on field trip to a dinosaur museum.

She could only imagine what her brother Jacob was thinking about all this, the sort that snorted derisively whenever someone brought up any mention of anything remotely pertaining to spirituality and the afterlife. Oh, she could just see the defensive stare he'd conjure as he tried to back his way out of this.

"The reports indicate that this 'soul,' if that's what we indeed want to call it, seems to be separate and distinct from the biological brain, although they say that it is definitely intertwined with it," the radio continued with its intent focus. "Everything I'm getting here... well, at this point, you could talk about anything you wanted to at this point; who knows what this will mean for the whole afterlife debate."

Finally! After all these years science had done something truly useful! Now that the soul was absolutely concrete, real, and empirical it meant that everyone had to confront it. She didn't know exactly what would happen at this point, but one thing was for sure to her; the old days of a cold, unfeeling impersonal universe that was unresponsive to human feelings was over. The news electrified her in a way that she didn't think possible; jostling her nerves together like the rhythm of an electric guitar. The whole world could just throw out the entire old model of a machine clockwork universe; that could be left out in the cold and never visit or bug humanity with its ugly visage again. There was spontaneity, there was free will. There was meaning to life!

"Now, you've all been hearing that big news conference they've been shouting out the last few hours, so its common knowledge that the basic stuff they used in this involved fancy quantum mechanical whatevers and processes, but this is the interesting part. They've been realizing more information as time as gone by, but we're getting swamped with all kinds of rumors and speculations from every scientist around the world and their grandmothers, so we've got a lot of theories and supplemental stuff that it'll probably take years to figure out what's exactly true and what's not" Ugh, Diane thought impatiently, get to your point already! "Nevertheless, according to some of the more detailed and in depth press releases, it seems that this whole thing took weeks to confirm before any of this was made public, during which time a lot of extra data was gathered. That includes, get this, ways to stimulate this 'soul' and make it more responsive."

Diane's mouth practically fell to the floor of the vehicle. Fortunately for her she was stuck dead still in traffic so she wasn't going to crash or anything.

"In fact," the host continued, "we've got some specifics on what those goodies were. Keep in mind a lot of this is preliminary, but if this is true than we could have surefire concrete ways of improving our 'spiritual' health." With that the host started listed some of these "preliminary findings" one by one. Frantically, she reached over to the dashboard and grabbed a small pocket notebook and a pen, jotting down everything that the radio said. Briefly, she shook her head in shock; here were actual, real steps to improving her soul, right here being broadcast on the radio! All she had to do was follow these instructions. Even if that didn't work, and this was all just people caught up in the excitement and getting ahead of themselves, it was only a matter of time before scientists the world over found actual ways to improve their spiritual health. It would be just like clockwork, and she could be a more spiritually fulfilled person.

The Immaterial

Radioactive Toast

30 January 2014 at 15:06:24 MST

A short blurb where science discovers the existence of the human soul, and it seems like everything is now answered

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Literary / Story

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