Sunday, 30 October 2011

Sunday Science

In an English newspaper today, there is a report of some research done by scientists that proves that a Kindle (or any other electronic book) actually weighs more when loaded with a few virtual manuscripts to read than it does when totally empty. Not much (it has to be calculated, it is so minute a difference), but a calculable amount nevertheless. I love it when the world of science and the 'paranormal' move closer toward each other - as they inexorably must - and I love the way that the more esoteric the science, the more it seems to prove the existence of God - or at least God's idea of God, as revealed to us in revelations (with a small 'R').

This modern day intellectual experiment is on an exact parallel to the ones carried out in the days before the Age of Reason, when clerics would spend many hours discussing how many angels could fit on a pin-head. Although we laughed about such a notion in a later, secular society, it seems to me that these Theologians may have been employing the exact same science as is now used by all the physicists since Einstein, and nobody laughs at them these days.

For obvious reasons, it is very difficult to carry out experiments on people at the point of their death, but it has - I believe - been done once or twice in the past.

I remember hearing that one or more people have, in the past, agreed to cooperate by allowing themselves to be placed on a highly sensitive set of scales when they are about to die. They were weighed in the seconds before their expiry, then immediately afterwards, and it was found that the corporeal frame was measurably lighter after they had breathed their last.

It may be a massive jump in supposition (a quantum leap is a very small event indeed) to deduce from this that humans do indeed have 'souls', and that these souls leave the body considerably lighter when they vacate, but - as I have said before - I am prepared to believe in anything. Life is so much more exciting when you can.

The few corpses of people I have known very well that I have looked at, actually seem dramatically smaller when the life has left them, and I am not talking about the way that the drop in blood-pressure deflates the flesh of the deceased in death. Even the bones seem smaller - the size of the head, etc. so that the empty person looks like a miniature version of their live self.

Another experiment done some years ago discovered that if you sit quietly and imagine yourself to be in a gym for an hour a day, you actually start to develop muscle growth as if you had been weight-training.

Similarly, the more you exercise your brain, the larger it gets - even though it is not a muscle and there is always plenty of cellular room for terra-bytes of information which will never be assimilated in a single lifetime.

Of course, it is also possible to restrict the growth of your brain by consuming a bottle of wine every night. You wouldn't want to end up looking like a Mekon, would you?


  1. A lovely post, Tom and beautifully realised. I've seen the same thing on a friend's deathbed and I'm sure, the more I stories and theses I write on this laptop, the heavier the bloody thing gets when I walk into town.

  2. The iMac that I write this - in the words of Molly - 'bollocks' on was bloody heavy when I first bought it empty aside from the operating system, but I had always put that down to it having a cast iron stand. My arms were falling off as I dragged it back from the shop.

  3. I am always much lighter on breathing OUT, than on breathing IN.

  4. I certainly feel a lot lighter after letting out wind, Cro. It's like a southerly version of taking the weight off your shoulders.

  5. I was there when my Grandma died. I was old enough to conciously notice things about her as she slipped away (she died of pneumonia). She tried, in vain, to tell me something as she chattered and shaked uncontrollably, which was very distressing to watch.

    Afterwards, I was ushered next to her to give her a goodbye kiss. She looked soooo different. Not asleep. 'She' simply was not there.

    Whatever had left her was a huge part of being alive, not just chemical, electrical or biological - and was profoundly noticable by its absence.

  6. When H.I.'s mum died, we were unexpectedly shown into a room where she was laid out in make-up, which distressed H a bit.

    I said, "That's not her", and H replied saying, "No, but she spent a long time living in it."