Guest Author - Theresa Faulkner
There is a theory in psychology that states we are all born as blank slates, without ideas or knowledge. With this in mind, if a Christian suffers from Alzheimer’s, amnesia, or other form of brain damage, would they continue to think and know that they used to believe in God or would they reject the idea and become a non-theist? If you are a Christian and you forget you are one, are you still saved? This isn’t the exact question that I discussed with my fellow atheists, but it fits the discussion. We talked about Alzheimer’s and if you were a Christian would you still remember that you were one? Would you walk the walk and talk the talk as you did when you remembered? Just how ingrained would it be? Would it be ingrained in your mind to the point that it wouldn’t matter? Or do you go back to that “blank slate” from birth?
I found a hypothetical question on the internet (asked by a Christian) in which he basically asked if he were to have amnesia, and forget he was a Christian because of amnesia, and he stopped attending church and committed sins against God, would he still be saved, because he had originally accepted Christ into his heart?
How sad that he must even contemplate that thought. It is sad for a couple reasons. First, because my understanding of being saved means you are always saved, regardless of what you have done afterwards. Admittedly, this may not be other’s understanding, and it would appear from the question that it isn’t. Second, it is sad that he would be worried enough about it that he would lose his place in heaven if it happened. Answers in the forum ranged from “yes, because God would understand and know you weren’t yourself” to “I don’t know” to “you would be back to your infancy, free from religious dogma”. Hence, the blank slate reference and the discussion with my fellow atheists.
Our brains are electrical impulses and any damage to the brain that affects the core of our memories and who we are changes are personalities and our beliefs.