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Sum, Religion


  1. Friedrich's "Wanderer above the Sea of Fog"The scenarios in Sum do not represent any of the theories currently endorsed by the world's major religions. For example, we do not encounter Jesus or Muhammad in Sum. So where do Eagleman's stories come from? Do you think Eagleman wanted readers to interpret these stories as religious truths? Or is Eagleman using Sum to make a broader statement about the nature of religion and its role in society? If so, what kind of statement do you think a book like Sum might be making?
  2. How many religions are there in the world? What "stories" do the following religions use to explain the afterlife: Islam, Judaism, Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, Sikhism, Voodoo (Vodoun)?
  3. Do you think Sum could be considered controversial? Offensive? Sacrilegious? Who or what groups might find the book to be controversial, offensive, or sacrilegious? Do feel comfortable reading a book with invented stories about the afterlife? Explain your answers.
  4. David Eagleman refuses to label himself as a follower of any one religious movement, including atheism. Instead, he calls himself a "Possibilian." What do you think that means? Then go to the website to see if you're right.


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