Limits

“Glenn used to say the reason you can’t really imagine yourself being dead was that as soon as you say, “I’ll be dead,” you’ve said the word I, and so you’re still alive inside the sentence. And that’s how people got the idea of the immortality of the soul — it was a consequence of grammar. And so was God, because as soon as there’s a past tense, there has to be a past before the past, and you keep going back in time until you get to I don’t know, and that’s what God is. It’s what you don’t know — the dark, the hidden, the underside of the visible, and all because we have grammar, and grammar would be impossible without the FoxP2 gene; so God is a brain mutation, and that gene is the same one birds need for singing. So music is built in, Glenn said: it’s knitted into us. It would be very hard to amputate it because it’s an essential part of us, like water.”

Excerpt From: Atwood, Margaret. “The Year of the Flood.” Anchor Books, 2009-09-22. iBooks.
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