Saturday, May 28, 2011

21 Grams

I know you’re there
Although it’s nothing I can prove
I know you’re there
From just the way the shadows move
And though I said goodbye and fin’ly let you go
I know you’re there
Although I don’t know how I know.
                            –Alix Korey, American composer

In 1907, researcher Duncan MacDougall found that 21 grams of body weight were lost immediately after a person died. He attributed the weight loss as a result of the soul leaving the body. The tests were never replicated and the results were widely dismissed by the scientific community. Still, it does bring up the question of what, if anything, remains when we die.

We may never be able to prove that the soul or spirit exists or whether it leaves the body upon death. But what we can be certain of is a lingering memory of those who have gone before us. And that, if nothing else, is the true soul or spirit of a living being.

It is that spirit of the deceased that we carry around with us in our thoughts. It is those memories that keep that person’s essence alive. And, when we think or speak of that person, though the body may not be around anymore, that person’s spirit continues forever.

(Excerpt from Learning to Laugh When You Feel Like Crying: Embracing Life After Loss
Goodman Beck Publishing)

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