Chapter 8 – Light

Elder Gottlieb had one more item in his backpack. His mother wasn’t just a neuroscientist. She researched artificial intelligence and was working on developing technology that could more mimic the way human brains function. Her team came up with this. He took out what looked like a small clear plastic brain. Lights were blinking in a random pattern. 

It has the capacity to learn. The flashing lights are like little neurons communicating with each other. With each new environmental stimuli, the lights flash in a different pattern. It has a tiny microphone for listening and a small camera for seeing. It also has a small temperature and humidity sensor.

The device rotated towards to direction of the fire. The lights in the device flashed about. Was it feeling the warmth of the fire and seeing its light? 

I understand. It is able to learn even though it has not soul, but you continue to believe that human beings do have souls. Is the soul controlled by rules or does it act randomly?

“If your soul is guided by rules, which then guides your brain, you would have no free will or as you call it, free agency. Like this little device, you are programmed. Your life is either random or predetermined.”

Adams (2013)

Our life is neither random nor predetermined. Our soul is not controlled. Our soul is given a little sensor, like this device. Everyone coming into this world is given a bit of light to guide them but never to control them. Our soul can reject the direction of the light and move toward the dark, if it chooses. As we move towards the light, we gain more light which leads to more knowledge. With more light and knowledge, we can make continue to move towards more light and knowledge. Light seeks after light.

Why would anyone choose to move away from the light if the light clearly is the right choice?

Where there is light, there is darkness. Where there is truth, there is deception. The two opposites co-exist in this world. The enemy that pulls us away from light is a liar. He redirects us but giving our physical brains the impression that they are feeling pleasure and gaining power. The brain lies to the spirit. If the spirit does not turn to the light and learn from it, it will be deceived in the false light source.

Elder Gottlieb took out a small flashlight and shined it directly on the brain-like device. The device rotated away from the fire.

The device reacted to the flashlight very quickly like a child reacting to the sound of an ice cream truck, or a man reacting to the sight of young attractive woman. Brains are easily distracted by physical stimuli. Only when the brain allows the spirit to guide it, can it overcome the dopamine rewards that the physical brain feels when it eats a delicious dessert or laughs at a funny television show.

Mr. Jäger, why are you here? Was there a light that directed you here?

Elder Jäger paused to consider the question that he thought he had answered. Elder Jäger decided that he needed to go back a little further.

About a year ago, me and my best friend Diego decided to go into some caves near our home. We went alone. It was getting dark when we arrived at the caves. I had two flashlights and Diego had two flashlights. We quickly learned how dark caves are and put on our flashlights. As we went deeper into the cave both of our flashlights flickered and died. We used our second flashlights and after a short period of time those went off as well. We were pretty scared. We turned around. I was able to tap my flashlight and get it to turn on for a few minutes at a time, which helped us to move forward. We came to a ledge that led up into a small opening. It was not the way we had come.

You made choices that impacted your probability of success. What did you do next?

We climbed up the ledge and into a small area that was entirely enclosed. It was a dead end. We climbed back down and I suggested that we should pray to God. When we pray, we pray to our Father in the name of his Son. After the prayer ended, I felt that we needed to go back into the small cave.

You decided to no longer follow rational thought. You made a guess that something would be different.

I wouldn’t call it a guess. I would call it a strong confident feeling that it was the right thing to do. We went up and I tapped my flashlight to get it to turn on more time. There in front of us, was a large opening that was clearly not there before. Through the opening was a drop that was difficult to see. Again, I felt confident that we had to go through. 

You took a risk. You could have been injured or killed. You went anyway.

Yes, I went forward because I felt that God had created that opening and if he had created a way to move forward, the only option was to move forward.

Was that actually a choice? Were you exercising your free will, or was God manipulating you?

I made the choice to ask for his help. If God had opened the path before I had asked, then he would have taken away my free agency to choose life or possibly death in that cold dark cave. We jumped down, and practically ran forward. In a few minutes we looked up and saw a clear star-lit sky. 

And that’s why you are here?

Once you know that God lives and that all you need to do is ask for his guidance, you can stop yourself from jumping and running forward. I haven’t stopped since. My path was altered which took me here to your door, today.

Mr. Jäger, you may be one of the few people who believe in God. Many people say that they believe in God but don’t show it in their actions. You show your belief in your actions.

“This people draw nigh unto me with their mouth, and honor me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.”


A biblical verse?

Yes, that is a biblical verse. There are other verses like it. You are correct, most people who say that they believe, do not demonstrate that their belief is real. If you knew that there was a treasure buried in your backyard, you would run at top speed, get your shovel, and dig like mad to get the treasure. Once you know, you can’t stop moving forward towards the treasure. Sadly, there are only a few who become aware that the treasure is right in their own backyard. People stand in the light of the sun and tell you that it’s night.

So God created this world and billions of people, only to save a few? That doesn’t seem to be all loving and all just? Only a small group gets to go to heaven, and the rest go to an internal damnation? 

That is binary thinking. When you think in ones and zeroes … right/wrong, good/bad, light/dark, and heaven/hell, you are using binary thinking. The difficult answers require directional or analog thinking.

Elder Gottlieb reached into this duffle bag for another item. This time, he pulled out a small square circuit board, about the size of a slice of bread. He pulled out two AA batteries and inserted them into their holder. The circuit board had a tiny switch, a small dial and a small led light. 

This is a normal on-off switch and this is a variable resistance switch. If I use the on-off switch, I either get full light or no light on my LED. If I use my variable resistance switch I get degrees of light. Everyone starts with the same level of light. Throughout their life, everyone varies in the amount of light that they obtain by reducing their resistance to the light. In the end people don’t go to either all-light or no-light places which is binary thinking. People go to the place where their light source matches.

You are referring to the afterlife? You realize that while your religion believes in one model of the spirit moving onto another life, that there are many other religions that believe in something much different. The larger world religions entirely contradict one another. If one is correct, then the other is false. Therefore all must be delusions that each human selects in order to get them through life. The odds of finding and picking the true religion, if one exists is a statistical improbability.

Elder Jäger heard something that triggered an opportunity to ask some key questions. Avatar used the term “if” which leads to a question.

You said, “If on exists”. What if one truth existed? Rather than compare religions, one with another, why not compare degrees of truthfulness or degrees of light and truth. 

Elder Gottlieb jumped in. If I understand your premise correctly, you are stating that religions A, B, C, and D are not equal to one another; therefore, none of them can be equal to anything. These types of digital logical arguments are subject to logical fallacies. It’s only when you consider degrees of truth to exist that you can start to see reality as it may be. If A, B, C, and D were the Sun, a distant star, the fire in this room, and the little LED on my circuit board, which one emits the most light?

Yes, Mr. Gottlieb, you can measure actual luminosity of a light source, or the apparent brightness of a light source. Light, regardless of its origin has the same speed.

Light has constant speed in a vacuum, but not in different medium. Gravity also appears to effect the speed of light. We can come back to that point. In my logical equation, either the Sun or the distant star will have the highest level of luminosity, but for us in this room, that fire has the highest apparent brightness because of how closely we are sitting to it. 

People are close to different light sources depending on where they grew up, where they were educated, and what their parents taught them. While all environments contain light, the light is traveling through different mediums and its distance to the hearer of the message is the shortest possible; therefore the light that people are familiar with has the highest apparent brightness.

Gazing into the fire, Avatar responded, “Like the fire in this room, people believe that the light source closest to them is the brightest, when actually, another light source may have a higher actual brightness. Logically, there may exist a light source that is the brightest, even though it is farther away and its light never makes it to the viewers eyes.”

The star named Deneb is 100,000 times brighter than our star. However, we can look directly at Deneb in the evening and not be blinded because it is so far away. If someone stares at our Sun during the day it will blind you. People see different levels of light based on how close they are to the source of the brightest light. 

Quietly Elder Jäger was singing “she was blinded by the light, Oh cut loose like a deuce, another runner in the night” … fading off at Elder Gottlieb gave him a stare, “blinded by the light”. Elder Jäger had a propensity to remember nearly every top hit song of the 70s and sang a few every day. 

My favorite line in the song is “And now young Scott with a slingshot finally found a tender spot and throws his lover in the sand.” I wonder who Scott is?

Can we focus on our discussion?

And there’s another line with star and your name in it. What’s the probability of that? “And now in Zanzibar, a shooting STAR was ridin’ in a side car, hummin’ a lunar tune. Yes, and the AVATAR said, blow the bar but first remove the cookie jar, we’re gonna teach those boys to laugh too soon.” Isn’t that crazy that the same song mentions you name Avatar?

What is wrong with you? Seriously? We are discussing degrees of light and truth and you are thinking about a Bruce song. 

Bruce made it famous, but Manfred Mann wrote it. 

Avatar commented, “The song does have an interesting set of lyrics, especially the line with my name in it.”

Elder Gottlieb did a face palm and was ready to walk out on both of them. Elder Gottlieb had a small anxiety issue. He had exploded at times and it looked like he was about to have a major anxiety attack. 

There are many things in this world that are interesting but that doesn’t make them important. The coincidence that the song mentions the name Avatar is a distraction from what is truly important.

Continue to Next Chapter