The answer to the question is not one of the absolutes. It depends on if one believes they, in fact, have a soul at all. What constitutes that soul, and the nature of the soul. Having determined all these, one is left to ponder the worth of that soul.
It is the last factor—the worth of a soul that would best determine the exchange rate. Most of the people I know that believe in the existence of the soul place a high value upon it. I dare to say we placed a slightly higher value on our soul than upon those of others despite the unending chorus that we are all in this together and our manufactured concern for viral infections.
I am willing, even eager, to be wrong about that. However, my eyes tell me that I am not in error. That is not my object in this post. I would like instead to contemplate the meaning of exchange. For once I am not particularly interested in the strict dictionary definition, but the nuances of the practical act.
How far must one go to exchange one’s soul? Must we resort to a Faustian bargain to consider our soul sold or can it be more subtle than that? I have no concrete answer.
When your opinion is no longer yours or when your thoughts are manufactured and fed to you—is your soul still yours? When you are no longer you, an autonomous, self-actuated, individual mind and heart do you retain your soul? You tell me.
St. Paul once wrote, “Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey…” Orwell played with the idea that while we might physically be a slave to a tyrant, that if our thoughts remained our own we were still our own person—our own soul. It was not enough for Winston to obey Big Brother he must be made to love Big Brother.
I am continually amazed at the numbers of people my age who have seemingly ceased to think or act of their own accord. (I do not expect it of those under 30, they were brow-beaten from the start.)
Foremost in my thoughts is an experience I had in 2018. Our little ER was overwhelmed for months because the CDC guessed wrong about the strain of the flu circulating. All those people vaccinated for type A were so sick from type B. Today, through the wonder of an untested vaccine, we are told receiving this shot will not only save us from the ravages of CoVid19 but all its mutant variants as well.
After years of listening to Judge Judy tell us that if it doesn’t make sense it a lie, we still bought the advertised superpowers attributed to this vaccine delivered by the infallible hands of the CDC. I look for the day to arrive when proof of vaccine will be required to live. Will getting it then, under the thumb of government demand, constitute selling one’s soul? And is getting it beforehand, less of an exchange?
I suppose it may depend on if we truly love Big Brother or not. Show the big guy some love, why don’t you?