Choose a topic from Vol 3:


Reason proves God's existence
Primitive monotheism
Mystery of God's inner nature
Personality of God
Providence of God and the problem of evil


Immortal destiny of man
Can earth give true happiness?
Do human souls evolve?
Is transmigration possible?
Animal souls
Freedom of will
Free will and faith


Religion and God
The duty of prayer
The mysteries of religion
Can we believe in miracles?

The Religion of the Bible

Historical character of the Gospels
Canonical Books of the Bible
Original Manuscripts
Copyists' errors
Truth of the Bible
New Testament "contradictions"

The Christian Religion

Christianity alone true
Not the product of religious experience
Compared with Buddhism, Confucianism, Mahometanism, Bahaism, etc.,
Rejected by modern Jews
The demand for miracles
The necessity of faith
Difficulties not doubts
Proofs available
Dispositions of unbelievers

A Definite Christian Faith

One religion not as good as another
Changing one's religion
Catholic convictions and zeal
Religious controversy
The curse of bigotry
Towards a solution

The Problem of Reunion

Efforts at the reunion of the Churches
The Church of England as a "Bridge-Church"
Anglicans and the Greek Orthodox Church
The "Old Catholics" of Holland
Reunion Conferences
Catholic Unity
The Papacy as reunion center
Protestant hostility to Catholicism
The demands of charity

The Truth of Catholicism

Necessity of the Church
The true Church
Catholic claim absolute
A clerical hierarchy
Papal Supremacy
Temporal Power
Unity of the Church
Holiness of the Church
Catholicity of the Church
Catholic attitude to converts
Indefectible Apostolicity
Necessity of becoming a Catholic

The Church and the Bible

Catholic belief in the Bible
Bible-reading and private interpretation
Value of Tradition and the "Fathers"
Guidance of the Church necessary

The Dogmas of the Catholic Church

Dogmatic certainty
Credal statements
Faith and reason
The voice of science
Fate of rationalists
The dogma of the Trinity
Creation and evolution
The existence of angels
Evil spirits or devils
Man's eternal destiny
The fact of sin
Nature and work of Christ
Mary, the mother of God
Grace and salvation
The sacraments
Holy Eucharist
The Sacrifice of the Mass
Holy Communion
Marriage and divorce
Extreme Unction
Man's death and judgment
Resurrection of the body
End of the World

Moral Teachings of the Catholic Church

Catholic intolerance
The Spanish Inquisition
Prohibition of Books
Liberty of worship
Forbidden Socieities
Church attendance
The New Psychology
Deterministic philosophy
Marriage Legislation
Birth Prevention
Monastic Life
Convent Life
Legal defense of murderers
Laywers and divorce proceedings
Judges in Divorce
Professional secrecy

The Church in Her Worship

Why build churches?
Glamor of ritual
The "Lord's Prayer"
Pagan derivations
Liturgical symbolism
Use of Latin
Intercession of Mary and the Saints

The Church and Social Welfare

The Church and Education
The Social Problem
Social Duty of the Church
Catholicism and Capitalism

Immortal destiny of man

27. Don't you think that the idea of immortality is due merely to the desire to live on?

I know that it is not due merely to that. Men without any desire to live on have the conviction. At the same time normal people do desire to live on, and by such an irrepressible tendency that we must admit it to be a clear indication of immortality. I do not say that everything a person wants to be true is necessarily true. But here we have, not a transitory wish, not a momentary craving, but a natural tendency implanted in our very nature and always with us. Aristotle said long ago that "nature does nothing in vain." The eye demands light; and there is light. Our very constitution demands air; and there is air. And it is part of our very nature to look forward to immortality. All men experience this urge at times. They have not to persuade themselves that they will live on. They have to try to persuade themselves that they will not. Or else they just forget it. However, in addition to this argument from purposive tendencies there are other reasons of equal and greater weight. The very nature of thought shows the soul to be immaterial, and not subject to the laws of disintegration and destruction which govern all material things. We must consider, also, the facts of the moral law and the necessity of ultimate justice. All these arguments, taken together, are quite satisfactory to reason. If people say that they are not satisfied by such considerations, it is because they unreasonably expect too much. We cannot expect to prove the immortality of the soul as we can prove that lead is heavy by testing it on a pair of scales. But there are different orders of being with different orders of proof. Who would be so unreasonable as to deny the existence of humility because it can't be bought by the pound? All the reasonable proof of the immortality of the soul man can rightly demand is available.

28. Would you please amplify the evidence that the human soul is immortal.

Reason tells us that the soul is a spirit, not composed of parts like material things, and unable to disintegrate and go to pieces like material things. All corruption is disintegration of parts. But the soul has no parts. It is not a composite thing. It is a simple spiritual substance; and it must, of its very nature, continue when the body perishes. Again, all men as naturally judge that the soul is immortal as they are conscious that they exist. They do not have to persuade themselves that it is true, but that it is false. Man's intelligence, if not warped, seeks the truth for which it is built. It cannot rest contented with a lie. Left to itself it spontaneously judges immortality to be a truth; and this universal judgment cannot be doubted without casting suspicion on all our faculties. Furthermore. God has established a moral law written on the conscience of men. He knows and loves the moral order He has established. And He is infinitely just. It is certain that right conduct cannot be ultimately the worse for a good man; evil conduct cannot ultimately be for the good of an evil man. Things will be leveled up somewhere. Yet certainly they are not leveled up in this life. Public laws and human justice cannot cover interior wickedness. Honors are often conferred on the unworthy. An evil man has less remorse of conscience over a serious crime than a good man over a small fault. Since things are not rectified in this life, they will be in the next, and the responsible element of man will have to be there. It is not the body, which we have seen die and which will rise only on the last day; it is the soul. From the viewpoint of fact, God has revealed that man's soul is immortal; and Christ raised at least three people to life from the dead, recalling their souls to their bodies, besides rising Himself in the Resurrection after His death on the Cross.

29. I know that it's nice to believe that the soul is immortal when you feel sure of eternal happiness. But, if you look out of yourself, and think of the millions lost, it is not a very nice thought.

If immortality is a fact, it does not matter whether it is nice or not to think it. Our likes and dislikes cannot alter the fact. If it is true, it is each man's plain duty to save his soul; for if he loses that, all is indeed lost. So Christ put the question, "What does it profit a man to gain the whole world, if he suffer the loss of his soul?" Meantime, there is no need to think of the millions lost. To all men God gives sufficient grace for their salvation. Only those are lost who sin despite the known will of God, and die without repentance.

30. Cicero said that when he read a book proving the soul immortal, he believed it; but when he read a book against it, he did not believe it.

Such a stray remark on occasional states of mind proves nothing. No one maintains that the conviction of immortality is one which may never momentarily become obscured. A man reading arguments against a given doctrine, and not immediately perceiving the answer to them, may arrive at vague doubts, and speak hesitatingly. But even with Cicero, nature reasserted itself, and in the end he said it must be so. However, what this individual or that has thought or said avails nothing against the general judgment of mankind.

31. All my own inclinations are to believe it. But desirability does not make it true.

I have already given you reasons independent of man's natural inclinations. But even your inclinations here are a reliable indication. I admit that we do not find sufficient justification for believing a doctrine merely because it is a pleasant concept. But if you find yourself endowed by nature with deep-seated inclinations tending necessarily towards it, things are very different. This does not count for nothing. If all our thoughts go one way, if we have needs, desires, aims, and aspirations, all of which demand an object, and imply by their own very existence that that object does exist also, then that object must exist. Could anyone conceive that God would form that most delicate organ of hearing, the ear, so wonderfully adapted to every kind of vibration, yet endow no objects with the power of causing sound? The whole tendency of the ear would be to hear, yet it would never do so because its complementary object would be wanting. Every natural tendency implies and has an object. More, if nothing in this life really and completely satisfies the soul, and if there be a message professing to be from God, teaching us that of which we already have the presentiment, and to provide the means to attain the destiny of happiness we crave, surely it is deserving of our attention. And whilst I am at it, let me suggest to you that it is the Catholic religion above all others in this world that is most deserving of your attention.

32. Is it pride of intellect that makes one agnostic on this subject, or just inability to have any firm conviction?

No man is unable to have a firm conviction of a future life. And I do not think agnosticism on this point is due to pride of intellect. There would certainly be no grounds for such pride. The agnostic who says that he does not know whether death ends all or not is one who is simply unintelligent, or who refuses to think about the subject at all, or who pretends not to have a conviction which he really does possess, but which he constantly tries to repress for reasons best known to himself.

33. Have you ever seen the other world?

Apart from the indications of reason in favor of immortality, One who has seen the future life of millions who have already gone from this world, and who knows what awaits us, has given us all the information we need. God Himself has stepped in, and speaking by the prophets, and by His own Son, has told us of the future for which we must prepare. And Christ had only one word for the man who does not prepare-fool! To the rich man who had neglected all thought of life after death He said, "Thou fool, this night shall thy soul be required of thee." Take my advice, and think out this matter more carefully.

34. Belief in immortality is most harmful. It diverts men's attention from the good they can do in this life.

It does just the opposite. It inspires still greater works of devotedness and charity in the cause of humanity for the love of God. And the doctrine is in the best interests of man. All mankind lifts its voice with mine. Generation after generation has agreed. In fact, it is part of man's very nature. The conviction of a future life is so deeply ingrained that it could not be based on a lie. It is as true an instinct as that of a baby which carries everything to its mouth, knowing that thus it will be nourished, though it can explain nothing about the processes of nutrition. Destroy man's conviction of immortality, and he degenerates, even as the fish taken out of the sea will perish, or the tree torn up by the roots will die. Most of those who deny immortality are interested in denying it. Nor are they very convinced themselves of their position against immortality. They have no proofs whatever. They deny, because they don't want to prepare for it.

35. Why do you Christians want a future life?

Why do you want to know that? You will say, "Well, it is natural for a man to desire knowledge." So I say that it is natural for man to desire further life beyond the few years earthly existence can offer.



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