(1) The Riddle of Death or Does Life Have a Meaning?
When you come here you are given a body. Well by the same token that body is taken away when you leave here. Now this is not something that is stressed in our culture. We are told in effect - it isn't said explicitly but it's implied in the teaching in all the schools - that you are your molecules and your brain is your mind. You're like a bubble - at death it bursts and that's the end of you, so you might as well drink pepsi-cola while you're here. What a way to go! We're actually the first large society that has grown up not believing the most vital part of ourselves survives the death of the physical body. Suppose now the brain is like a television receiver and we're receiving things through it. Well then, if something happens to the receiver your image is going to get blurred. But it won't hurt the program. Anyone with a good set can still receive it, as you could if you got a new television set. So the real you (the operator who is using the neurons in the brain to come through) is like a television program and the body is like a set that receives it. Then you can easily explain why very intelligent people would deteriorate with slight brain damage - with slight strokes and so on they can become vegetables. The person becomes a vegetable because their message can't get through - they have a bad receiver.
We are not our physical bodies. It is as if a hypnotist hooked up someone to a remote control robot and said, you are this robot, and the person believed it under hypnosis. If the person could move the robot around and walk it at will, they would finally believe they were the robot. Well, when you believe you are your body you are in the same condition. We are using the body and it's a marvelous instrument, but it's not the be all and end all.