In the first half, author and philosopher Matthew Alper talked about the concept of the "God part of the brain." Just as beavers build dams and cats meow due to their neurological predispositions (and not through learned behavior), he explained, so are humans universally hard-wired to believe in transcendent god figures. Humankind is the first species that was self-conscious of our own existence, he went on— including the awareness of the fact that we will someday die. Alper contends that his research supports the idea that these transcendental realities may have given rise to the development of the God part of the human brain. The result is a system he calls neurotheology, which is now recognized as a field of study within brain science.
For Alper, belief in the paranormal is another example of the God part of the brain at work. Ghosts, UFOs, and synchronicities help explain events that we can't understand, whereas the alternative explanation— that we simply can't comprehend certain phenomena, and a vast, indifferent universe provides no answers either —is uncomfortable, even frightening. Claims of personal firsthand experiences with these phenomena are hallucinatory, or psychological deceptions mistaken for paranormal or religious encounters, he argued.
To callers who offered biblical justifications for their own beliefs, Alper responded that they were making his arguments for him. Each caller's version of the truth was subjective, and just happened to correspond to the dominant religious worldview of our own culture. People from a Hindu culture would reject Christian explanations of the world the callers drew upon, as would Muslims, Jews, and atheists, he countered. So far, science hasn't provided support for any of them, Alper indicated.
Clairvoyant medium Kim Dennis was the guest in the latter half. Although she was unable to pinpoint where her abilities come from, she claimed she can see into the dimension that includes the afterlife, communication with souls that have crossed over, and reincarnation. Dennis said she's met an angel, and described her own journey to heaven, which is a beautiful, incredible place free of physical, spiritual, and mental affliction.
Dennis took calls from listeners, some of whom asked her to relay messages from their loved ones who had passed. To a woman in New York who shared that her faith in the afterlife had recently been shaken, Dennis replied that she saw two older men— perhaps her father and another close friend or relative —and that they wanted to reassure her. She advised a caller in Wisconsin who wondered whether his recently deceased friend was aware of how messy the settling of his estate had become that he was at peace with the situation, and that what happened would ultimately be up to his widow. When another listener in Wisconsin wanted to know when her poor health would improve, Dennis explained that the key was to tell herself that she is in perfect health, and that she should see better results within the year.
The first Sunday of every month, George Noory presents emerging artists for some of our bumper music selections. Tonight, we'll hear from Box 21, Dean Tyler K, Fool In Utopia, Joseph Patrick Moore, Eddie Davis, Fearless Liars, and Chris Armes. For more info on how to submit your own original music, visit this page.