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Why I Believe in Personal Immortality

Why I Believe in Personal Immortality
by Sir Oliver Lodge


ARGUMENTS in favour of human survival, or that death is mainly a bodily transaction, are as old as humanity. One set of arguments may be classed as Theological, being based on the postulate of the goodness and reasonableness of a Creator; while another set, which might be called anthropological, is based on man’s instinctive revulsion from the idea of annihilation, and on the postulate that evolved instincts must have some correspondence with reality.

In this book I do not stress either of these arguments, though I respect them. I do not really wish to argue at all. My whole contention rests on a basis of experience, and on acceptance of a class of facts which can be verified at first hand by others if they take the trouble.

I know how weighty the word "fact" is in science, and I say without hesitation that individual personal continuance is to me a demonstrated fact. This conviction has been reached through a study of obscure human faculty not yet recognized by orthodox science, and apparently not approved as a rule by Theologians. It is permissible therefore, and perhaps even obligatory, to give from time to time some excuse or apologia for my steady perseverance in the enquiry and my assured conviction about the results.

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