Annihilation the act of reducing any thing to nothing. Whether matter can be utterly destroyed or not, is a question that has been much agitated in the schools. According to some, nothing is so difficult; according to others, nothing is so easy. Existence, say the last, is a state of violence; all things are continually endeavoring to return to their primitive nothing; no power is required to effect it; it would be accomplished of itself; nay more, an infinite power is required to prevent it. As to human beings, the majority of the Greek philosophers opposed the doctrine; the Brahmins held that at stated intervals all created things are annihilated; the Siamese hold annihilation to be the greatest reward of virtue (Buck, Theol. Dictionary, s.v.). The theory of the annihilation of the wicked has been set on foot at different periods, and has recently been revived. SEE ANNIHILATIONISTS.

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