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“He’s in a Better Place Now” ~ BENEATH THE SURFACE with PAUL MURANO

By: Paul Murano – March, 2018

We all know secular materialism has dominated the media and academia for the past half century or so. This is the philosophy that believes matter is all there is. There is no mind, no soul, no spirit, no God. Yet, despite this belief, this “progressive” mindset is wrought with inconsistencies. Today we explore one of them: Why do materialists, upon hearing someone has died, respond with phrases like, “He’s in a better place now,” or “He is no longer suffering”?

ou never hear them say, “I’m sorry that John has been annihilated and no longer exists.” Yet, this last statement is the only one that is consistent with what they claim to believe. Why the contradiction?

Some might say it’s just a polite social convention. Perhaps, but why repeat conventions that are believed to be lies? This comfort with contradiction, very common to progressive ideology, is rather bewildering. “I’m sorry” would be sufficient, if being nice is the goal.

Before we go beneath the surface on why people with a materialist philosophy commonly contradict themselves with these common statements, let us take a closer look at the two statements. First, “He’s in a better place now.” How do we know? To the materialist the diseased person is nowhere. Non-existent. There’s no ‘place’ with non-existence. Secondly, “He is no longer suffering.” Think about that statement for a moment. It is nonsensical. For a person to be no longer suffering there must be a person who is not suffering. However, as just noted, according to the materialist, no vestiges of the person remain after death. They no longer exist. Therefore, while you could logically say the suffering has ceased, it is impossible and nonsensical to claim a non-existent person is now free of suffering.

Why do materialists make these statements when it contradicts their own philosophy? Perhaps this is due to an unacknowledged truth known deep in each person’s subconscious mind that human souls are spiritual and immortal and survive bodily death. Perhaps it indicates an intuitive knowledge that while death in itself is a tragedy, persons are not annihilated by it. Every people and culture on earth since the creation of cave paintings has manifested this intuitive knowledge in their beliefs and practices.

Now let’s look at the two statements from a Christian perspective. First, while the Christian holds onto the mercy of God, it is impossible to know that the deceased is now in a better place. There are two ‘places’ in which persons can spend an eternity, and we are not privy to the information needed to make a judgment on any individual. Second, the statement, “He is no longer suffering” may be true, but there remains the possibility that he is suffering even much more than he did on earth. If one does not die in the state of grace, one spends an eternity alienated from the Source of all life and love. This is an essential truth about the misery of hell. A disembodied soul might be in a better place, but he could also be in a much worse one.

Consistency in language and thought is important. Sometimes, though, inconsistency can be a tell tale sign of what a person really believes deep inside. Man is a body-soul composite, both physical and spiritual, created to be united with God for all eternity in never-ending bliss. How we freely choose to respond to His invitation for which we are made is up to each individual. So while we hope and pray that a person who has died is in a better place and is no longer suffering, only God knows for sure the eternal destiny we have chosen for ourselves.

Paul Murano teaches ethics & philosophy at Rivier University and North Shore Community College, and hosts Beneath the Surface radio show on WCAP in Lowell. He has masters degrees in philosophy and theology, a doctorate in marital theology, and is certified in bioethics. He founded Heartbeat Pregnancy Help in Burlington, and is a singer-songwriter-musician. E-mail Paul at PJDM@aol.com

Paul Murano

Paul Murano

Dr. Paul Murano teaches philosophy at Rivier University and North Shore Community College and hosts Beneath the Surface radio show on 980 WCAP. Paul has a doctorate in marital theology, is certified in bioethics by the NCBC, and teaches adult ed. at St. Patrick's in Nashua. He is founder of Heartbeat Pregnancy Help in Burlington, and is a singer-songwriter-musician. E-mail Paul at PJDM@aol.com

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