Beelzebub’s Flight to the Planet Earth for the Fifth Time

“The consequence was that an interest in this question gradually spread among all the ordinary three-brained beings then existing in Babylon, and by about the time we reached this city it had become the question-of-the-day for all the beings there.

“Not only did these learned themselves talk about and discuss this question, but similar conversations and fierce discussions proceeded like fury among the ordinary beings there also.

“It was talked about and discussed by the young and old, by men and women, and even by the Babylonian butchers. Exceedingly anxious were they, particularly the learned, to know about this question.

“Before our arrival there, many of the beings existing in Babylon had ultimately even lost their reason on account of this question, and many were already candidates for losing theirs.

“This burning-question-of-the-day was that both the ‘sorry-learned’ and also the ordinary beings of the city of Babylon were very anxious to know whether they had a ‘soul.’

“Every possible kind of fantastic theory existed in Babylon upon this question; and more and more theories were being freshly cooked up; and every, as it is said there, ‘catchy theory’ had, of course, its followers.

“Although whole hosts of these various theories existed there, nevertheless they were one and all based upon only two, but two quite opposite assumptions.

“One of these was called the ‘atheistic’ and the other the ‘idealistic’ or ‘dualistic.’

“All the dualistic theories maintained the existence of the soul, and of course its ‘immortality,’ and every
possible kind of ‘perturbation’ to it after the death of the being ‘man.’