The year is 2134. A world Engineering and Scientific consortium has perfected a method of 'transporting' an object from point A to point B without traveling through the intervening space between. They've started small with simple objects made of difference substances. Before transport the objects were characterized completely so as to compare composition after transport. This is done over and over, with items of ever increasing complexity. As nearly as the best of the worlds intellects can tell there is absolutely no difference in the objects pre and post transport. The time is now come for the transport of a much more complex object: a living thing. The moral sensibilities of the time preclude using animal life for such a dangerous experiment. Thusly, it is decided to use a specimen of living plant life: potted tea rose is chosen for transport. Pre-transport characterization of the rose is meticulously carried out. Living matter is far more complex than any piece of human made technology, even at this time. The time comes, the transport of the rose is accomplished. Painstaking analysis of the rose reveals that no appreciable difference exist in the rose post-transport. After several further tests with different plant specimens no deaths can be attributed to effects of teleportation. Emboldened by their success the consoritum begins to conduct experimentation on non-living animal tissue. Yet again, no appreciable difference in the cellular structure of the tissue is found after transport. The question is then debated as to whether or not a living specimen should be transported. After long deliberation it is decided that a sedated mouse will be the next subject of experiement. The experiement is started and the members of the consortium wait breathlessly for the sedated mouse to materialize. The mouse arrives and in time awakens from its induced slumber and seems completely normal! Elation sweeps the consortium! Could it be that human ingenuity has found a way to travel without physically crossing space? All evidence suggests that the teleportation device is completely safe. Humanity is at the dawn of a new age...or is it? Who among us will volunteer to be the first human transported?
I tell this hypothetical story to induce the reader to ponder a very simple and implied question:
Are we humans simply the sum of our matter or is there something more, something immaterial, non-physical that might not be subject to or lend itself to our technology?
If you believe in the human soul, do you allow yourself to be transported?
What is the nature of the soul if it exists?
What is it that makes us who we are?
Would the transported Robert be the same Robert that existed before transport!
Is a non-material soul smart enough to latch back onto its body post-transport?