mortal or not [pic] Sapientia

‘Bearing the Marks of Our Mortality’  by Gijsbert van den Brink

The question whether humans were mortal before the fall only comes up in a religious, and more specifically a Judeo-Christian, context. That is not just because the notion of the fall refers to the Bible, but also because from a secular point of view it is obvious that humans must have been mortal all along. How else could it be? Don’t we bear the marks of our mortality in our very bodies, just like the animals, with cells dying all the time and organs having only a limited lifespan? And isn’t our body-plan at least part of what makes us human, so that if we had had immortal bodies at some stage we would hardly have been humans? From a scientific point of view, therefore, the very question whether there might have been a time when humans were not mortal seems odd. Immortal beings figure in fairy tales, myths and science fiction, but not in real life—neither now nor in the distant past. Adam and Paul Why would Christians be inclined to disagree with this view? The answer is: because a

Source: Bearing the Marks of Our Mortality