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$5 million grant awarded to UC Riverside to study immortality
Date:7/31/2012

an afterlife, and that often gives people consolation when faced with death," Fischer said. "Philosophy and theology are slightly different ways to bring reason to beliefs about religion to evaluate their rationality. If you believe we exist as immortal beings, you could ask how we could survive death as the very same person in an afterlife. If you believe in reincarnation, how can the very same person exist if you start over with no memories?

"We hope to bring to the general public a greater awareness of some of the complexities involved in simple beliefs about heaven, hell and reincarnation, and encourage people to better understand and evaluate their own beliefs about an afterlife and the role of those beliefs in their lives."

For example, "We think that free will is very important to us theologically and philosophically. And heaven in the Judeo-Christian tradition is supposed to be the best place. Yet we arguably wouldn't have free will in heaven. How do you fit these ideas together?"

At the end of the project Fischer will analyze findings from the Immortality Project and write a book with the working title "Immortality and the Meaning of Death," slated for publication by Oxford University Press.


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Contact: Bettye Miller
bettye.miller@ucr.edu
951-827-7847
University of California - Riverside
Source:Eurekalert

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