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Life after death


harp
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What do you think happens after death? Do you believe we have sentient non-physical bodies (spirits)?

I remember a long time ago, I planned to kill myself but didn't go through with it because I was too scared. I had no idea what was going to happen to me after it, or where I was going to go. I romanticize death, seeing it as the ultimate escape, but how can it be so romantic if I fear it so much? A lot of people believe that after we die, our sentience ends because we have no spirits. I mean, science hasn't proven we have souls right? I see that as arrogant, because lets face it, humans aren't very intelligent, there must be many things that exist that humans haven't found scientific evidence for yet. Just like many animals aren't aware of many of the things humans are aware of because they're much less intelligent than humans.

Or some people believe that people who commit suicide are damned to hell for eternity, I remember being scared of that when I was planning to kill myself (and thinking of myself as an idiot for it!)

For me, believing in life after death is just a gut feeling that there definitely must be. It doesn't make sense, there's too little of a purpose to life for there not to be sentience after this. The human body is so weak and vulnerable to physical pain, psychological pain, torture and being controlled for there not to exist being a sentient entity and not being confined to a human body at the same time. What are your thoughts on this?

Edited by harp
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Are you looking for permission to kill yourself? That you might just get rid of this body and this particular set of circumstances (birth family?), but still be yourself and get another chance at it?

I don't believe it works that way.

My personal belief is that our sentience dies with us. Like our bodies, I believe it gets broken down so that it can be reused, but also like our bodies, not in any recognizable form. I agree that whether science can prove anything either way means nothing at all; this will by definition remain an area we can explain by belief alone.

It is, in part, the very fragility of our bodily vessel that makes life so precious, and crimes against other lives so heinous.

What I believe is our legacy in the world are all the lives we touch. I believe we leave a little spark with each person whom we affect even slightly, and that each person's job is to put to good use all the sparks that they have received, in their lifetime.

You describe it as "too little purpose in life"; I'd say there's too little purpose in death ...

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Are you looking for permission to kill yourself? That you might just get rid of this body and this particular set of circumstances (birth family?), but still be yourself and get another chance at it?

I don't believe it works that way.

My personal belief is that our sentience dies with us. Like our bodies, I believe it gets broken down so that it can be reused, but also like our bodies, not in any recognizable form. I

It is, in part, the very fragility of our bodily vessel that makes life so precious, and crimes against other lives so heinous.

What I believe is our legacy in the world are all the lives we touch. I believe we leave a little spark with each person whom we affect even slightly, and that each person's job is to put to good use all the sparks that they have received, in their lifetime.

You describe it as "too little purpose in life"; I'd say there's too little purpose in death ...

No, I'm not looking for permission, I've just never really let this out before, I wouldn't do it in real life because I'd be scared someone would interpret this as saying I'm going to kill myself and get me forced into a psych ward. By what you said about sentinence being reused, are you talking about say, forgetting about your past life and being reborn fresh and new with no memories? Because that's what I believe (sometimes).

I see little purpose in death either, but life after death, I see lots of potential for purpose for.

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But only if you get to remain "you" in that life after death, right?

That's the part that's difficult.

Harp, this past weekend we scattered my mother's ashes in a spot she was very fond of. That request meant something to her, in life, but I don't personally believe it means anything to her, or to anything you could still call "her", now. It meant something to us, as her surviving children ...

The difficulty with holding out this hope for yourself is that there's only one way to test it. And, if you live a long life and do the best you can with it, you'll still find out the answer, eventually. So where's the harm in focusing on the "do the best you can with it" part?

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On re-reading this, I thought I would add:

Conversely, if there's no life after death, or none that you'd recognize, and this really is the only chance we get at it, it would be silly to throw it away without that same "do the best you can with it" try.

Look up Pascal's Wager for similar thoughts from a few hundred years ago. ;-)

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The difficulty with holding out this hope for yourself is that there's only one way to test it. And, if you live a long life and do the best you can with it, you'll still find out the answer, eventually. So where's the harm in focusing on the "do the best you can with it" part?
Because it's just so pathetic and pitiful that so much of my life has been stolen from me, I've been "owned" by so many people and things that I can no longer lead a self-fulfilling life free of misery unless I break the attachment from myself and my past.
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I can no longer lead a self-fulfilling life free of misery...

If you say so. But, who promised you a life free of misery? All anyone can hope for is a life with a certain amount of happiness.

I still think it's a matter of perspective. Even if you've been "owned" for your whole life up to this point, that's still a fraction of an average human lifetime (I remember that you're a teenager.) What if you came back, and the next life was worse? Oh yeah, you could keep doing it until you got a start you liked. Does that really sound to you like the way the Universe would work?

Personally, I think that what matters is what we do with our lives despite the bad things that happen to us.

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If you don't remember who you are what does it matter if you come back?

Personally, I believe we each have a soul that lives forever. The body is meaningless.

Why wouldn't it matter? I'd still be alive and sentient, the worst thing would be to have nothing happen afterwards and to have my sentience just cease to exist.
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Well, here's the underlying question: what do you see is a person's "identity"?

Clearly, 'smallstar' is saying that she believes identity would require the person's knowledge, and you don't. It's okay if we disagree, but what would be interesting is to explore why we disagree.

How would each of you describe what "identity" is?

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I agree with you kinda, there must be something, we are so nothing yet everything.........Im confused. :eek: we know for certain that our ''understanding'' can change, so its possible that we can achieve an ''understanding of it all'' without having to die, :eek: Utopia is a feeling not a place. Like is a feeling not ''condensed atoms''........ok im stopped. :eek:

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  • 3 months later...

Some ideas that give me pause...

I heard that suicides come back and tend to commit suicide again and again and again in future lives because they fail to stick around long enough to learn what it is we were put on this earth to learn.

The other thought/fear (my own) is - what if you die in the mental state you are in, and that's what you get for all eternity? So if you die in a state of self loathing and pain and torment, imagine never getting the chance to get out of that state?

I once jumped off a cliff into a water filled quarry (about 100 feet high or so). I never ever would have done it on my own. So I came up with this idea with a guy on our trip of jumping off it together, holding hands. We knew that if either one didn't jump, we'd both be in big trouble because we'd probably end up bouncing down the edge of the cliff.

So anyway, we both had our problems. Later on he asked me out but he scared me, he looked so desperate and terrified, and I was the same way so I kind of distanced myself. I didn't know him all that well, we'd barely said 10 words to each other, he was just kind of that odd duck who managed to "tag along". Anyway, that was over 20 years ago and I still have his face emblazoned in my memory. I knew something was wrong. I knew he was suffering. But I didn't know the extent of it, and I didn't help him, I didn't even try, I didn't feel strong enough myself. Anyway he ended up committing suicide (overdose) several years later. I think of him almost every day now. I ask him, "Was it worth it?" "Are you happy?" "Have you found peace?" I have yet to hear a reply.

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Maybe death is another fragmented human concept. Maybe there is no divide between life and death. I mean evolutionary wise, it would be advantagous to have a concept of death, to have something too avoid and thus a greater chance of reproducing, but maybe it is ust a concept, and maybe that is why we have the concept.

haha I like this thread.

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Guest ASchwartz

I think this touches on what is called "existential philosophy, which is another way of asking, "What's it all about, Alphie?" By the way, that's a very old movie. In other words, if this life is all there is, then, what does life mean and why are we here? If there is life after death, what is it like. If there is reincarnation and we come back, what difference does it make if we can't remember who we were.

Do I sound confused?? Well, I am. :)

In my opinion, this is an important discussion.

Allan

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This is essentially pondering the meaning of life. It is tricky.

No one can tell you just show what they have learned, each of us have to find the answers ourselves to this one simple question.

My mother was clinically dead. She went through the tunnel everything that you have heard and was told she had to come back to raise me. She survived a head on wreck at 75 mph. She described the wreck in a way that is not possible from her view point right after.. and no one had talked to her beforehand.

Edited by randomperson
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My mother was clinically dead. She went through the tunnel everything that you have heard and was told she had to come back to raise me. She survived a head on wreck at 75 mph. She described the wreck in a way that is not possible from her view point right after.. and no one had talked to her beforehand.
That would tend to make one believe that there is something in the hereafter....
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