Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Renowned atheist has near death experience, 'Wha' happened?'

This story came to my attention in 1988 or 89 on the pages of National Review. For those of us in college philosophy classes in the 60s and 70s who had to deal with the rigors of logical positivism and Ayers' Language, Truth, and Logic, this story was an ironic curiosity. I just came across it told from a different point of view and thought it deserved wider distribution.

"An Atheist Meets the Masters of the Universe"

Dr. Jeremy George, senior consultant in the Department of Thoracic Medicine at London University’s Middlesex Hospital, was on duty one fine May afternoon in 1988. It was a day like any other. At around 3 p.m., an elderly patient was admitted with pneumonia.

When the young doctor saw this “crumpled heap in a corner of the private wing,” as he later put it, he instantly recognized “it” as Professor Sir Alfred Jules Ayer, also known as A.J. Ayer (or “Freddie” to his friends), the former Wykeham Professor of Logic at Oxford, and Britain’s most eminent philosopher." Read on.

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