Saturday, December 14, 2013

From the "Religious Apocrypha Department" ...

... comes this tale of a University of Arizona student's answer to a question on a chemistry midterm:

Bonus Question: Is Hell exothermic [gives off heat] or endothermic [absorbs heat]?

Wrote the student in reply:

First, we need to know how the mass of Hell is changing in time. So we need to know the rate at which souls are moving into Hell and the rate at which they are leaving, which is unlikely. I think that we can safely assume that once a soul gets to Hell, it will not leave. Therefore, no souls are leaving. As for how many souls are entering Hell, let’s look at the different religions that exist in the world today.

Most of these religions state that if you are not a member of their religion, you will go to Hell. [?] Since there is more than one of these religions and since people do not belong to more than one religion, we can project that all souls go to Hell. [??] With birth and death rates as they are, we can expect the number of souls in Hell to increase exponentially. Now, we look at the rate of change of the volume in Hell because Boyle’s Law states that in order for the temperature and pressure in Hell to stay the same, the volume of Hell has to expand proportionately as souls are added.

This gives two possibilities:

1. If Hell is expanding at a slower rate than the rate at which souls enter Hell, then the temperature and pressure in Hell will increase until all Hell breaks loose.

2. If Hell is expanding at a rate faster than the increase of souls in Hell, then the temperature and pressure will drop until Hell freezes over.

So which is it?

If we accept the postulate given to me by Teresa during my Freshman year that, "It will be a cold day in Hell before I sleep with you," and take into account the fact that I slept with her last night, then number two must be true, and thus I am sure that Hell is exothermic and has already frozen over.

The corollary of this theory is that since Hell has frozen over, it follows that it is not accepting any more souls and is therefore, extinct — leaving only Heaven, thereby proving the existence of a divine being. Which explains why, last night, Teresa kept shouting "Oh my God."

According to my source, this inventive answer earned the student an A+.

Now, I've noted a couple of points where there are hidden premisses that make the analysis a little sloppy. However, as the saying goes, "a broken clock is right twice a day," and there seems to be indications that Hell has indeed frozen over. Besides the usual bits of circumstantial evidence pointing to things that wouldn't happen under any other circumstance — gay marriages, a black POTUS, the Eagles reuniting, a seventh Star Wars, a Jesuit Pope — someone has managed to get some unequivocally empirical evidence:

Photo credit: Frank4YAHWEH, Photobucket

Alas, the story is unsourced, and may just be the product of the fertile imagination of that most prolific author, A. Nonymous. But, as Mr. Nightlinger said in The Cowboys, "If it ain't true, it oughta be."

[H/T to John Darrouzet!]