The belt is a snug fit around Adam’s chubby waist. Like many of his fourth grade peers, he is overweight. They are too young to have fat eating nanos implanted. The belt, his parents hope, will help him become more active. It won’t do much for his body, but maybe it will change him. The belt is an entwinement of black metal, a bright gold buckle, and organic components that get used in the searching. Adam is a cautious boy and makes sure to feed them as soon as he takes it out of the box. Just like the commercial said too.
Skeptics still claim the belt proves nothing. “A toy you buy at an electronics store is hardly a justification to believe in the soul,” Rex Edwards, Professor of Cognitive Science at M.I.T. said in answer to the belt. His opinion on this year’s hottest Christmas item was of particular relevance because two years previous he had listed the criteria that would have to be met for him to believe in the human soul. Without reprinting the article here, the belt met six out of eight of his qualifications.
The organic components (the box calls them Valiads) [Edwards calls them Strange New Sea Monkeys] begin to glow an hour and thirteen minutes after Adam has fed them. He waited patiently that entire time with the belt around his waist as he ate Christmas breakfast with his family. As the belt began to glow he excused himself from the table. “What will you become first, Adam?” His father says. Adam has thought about this since the day two weeks ago that he crept into his parents room and snuck a look at his presents.
“The angel statue in the backyard.” Adam says. His mother says she’ll be out there in a few minutes to take some pictures.
Adam runs outside into the snow with only his winter boots, pajamas, and the belt. The angel statue stands three feet taller than him, and it poses with its arms outstretched as though it were embracing the world. Adam brushes the snow off of it as best he can, but more keeps falling.
The belt hums after Adam turns it on. He points the large glowing buckle at the center of the statue, and light shoots from the belt. Archones, the company that produces the belt, makes no claims that this light is the soul, but so many claim otherwise. Why else would it allow a person to transfer their consciousness into another object? Mary Ellen, the eventual author of the future best selling A Glimpse Of God, will later claim that during this brief moment as the light shoots out of the body those looking into it can see into eternity and look God in the eyes. Others will say they see all of Creation through the light.
Adam imagines what it will be like to walk around in the body of the angelic statue. Will it be heavy? He imagines so, and wonders if he’ll even be able to flap the stone wings.
Those who have experienced the searching claim there is no current emotion that we could attach to the experience of being light.
The searching takes less than three seconds.
And then he is in his new body.
He is falling. His new body tells him he has been falling since his birth. This is his purpose. The body is cold but unique. Four days from now a recall order will be sent out across the country. It will claim that anything bigger than a spec of dust is capable of accepting consciousness from the belt. An apology from the President of Archones will state that all previous tests had been done in sterile laboratories, so this had never been an issue before.
As Adam lands on the ground next to all of his icy brothers and sisters he wonders “How many more children will turn into snowflakes this day?” He does not ponder the question long. His mother comes out in a hurry. She steps on Adam as she begins to take pictures of his former body and the statue that embraces the world.