What do you think the afterlife is like?

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Musashi

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Just curious. I don't see death as a very terrifying experience.
I've personally experienced levels of pain that have come close to being in shock. I personally think that once your pain threshold reaches a certain level you don't feel anything and your brain goes into a safe-mode type coma.

As for the afterlife, I personally believe in reincarnation. But don't know- I do have some beliefs that we are naturally born into hell and each afterlife becomes better (my personal opinion) or an inverse of the karmatic nature of the previous (This is similar to the yin-yang type thing) and I also believe that people are not naturally born as good or bad-natured people.

It's hard to say this is a Taoist view on Karma, because I don't feel that I align with a Taoist karmatic view:
http://www.the-taoism-for-modern-world.com/karma/
(The above link is kind of close though)
But Taoist religion is more about judgement after death and subtraction of your life for making bad karma:
http://baharna.com/karma/taoist.htm

And I don't believe in that spot-on.


It's more like:
You live a good previous life, you live a bad afterlife where you must create good karma to counter the good self-centred nature of the previous.

It's hard to accept in Taoist beliefs your life will be subtracted for the bad karma that happens to you, even if you are a good or bad person (and in Taoism in birth your karma is always neutral.)

I believe it's more or less a cycle but not "Natural Selection." This is really all just moral groundwork descriptions of my "Ideal" belief in a religion based on reincarnation- As if your life has a pre-determined set path between each afterlife when your spirit carries your karma with you and is decided (in a judgement) between lives- But I do not agree with subtraction of life inbetween the afterlives like in Taoism because I believe it goes against the yin-yang type philosophy of nature.

If that makes any sense.
I like to wrap my mind around the idea, but I don't see many religions that do align with this belief that "nature" of a human's moral and ethical groundwork for their future life is always decided by all of their previous in an inverse-like way.
 
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mistral

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Although I cannot be sure, I have seen absolutely no evidence to support the idea of any type of afterlife or reincarnation. So for me death is the end. Not very comforting I know but it does make one want to live life to the full on the grounds that I only have the one!
 

dogboy

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Our local news station, WSET recently caught a real ghost on their cameras while exploring an old building that was supposed to be haunted. You could see the full image of a woman and you could tell her clothing looked a couple of generations old. You could also see the back wall through her, as she was transparent. WSET is actually owned by the Sinclair news organization, a very conservative organization so they wouldn't make this stuff up. I also know some of the news staff as I've been interviewed and filmed by some of them. This was the real deal.

So how does that answer the question, what happens after death? It doesn't, I suppose but it suggests a number of things. One thing is that our energy and form goes on. Of course, ghosts are thought to be souls that haven't passed on to their next place. From what I've read, heard, seen, etc., I think we continue to live out our lives in the next reality. If you think about it, we were born into this world and we will be re-born into the next one. There's a reason we're alive and living our lives. I think it's to create the model for our next, more permanent state of being. This is just my opinion of course and like most opinions, it's worth two cents.
 

Sapphyre

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I essentially believe in the Buddhist notion of "reincarnation." It is a little difficult to explain, but the "nutshell" version of how I see things goes something like this:

As a matter of pragmatism, I try to take as little as possible on faith — ideally nothing. This does not lead me to a nihilistic conclusion however, because nihilism requires faith in an objective, indifferent universe as is conventionally perceived. But if I suspend my instinctive belief in objective physical reality as being the bedrock of existence, then what can I make of the universe, and of my experience of life within it? Buddhism (and, indeed, quantum physics) suggests that the universe is rather more connected to the individual observer than it appears. In some ways, you could think of it like weaving a world around yourself, with details being filled in as you go (this is really no exaggeration; in physics, you can influence events in the past by choice of measurement in the present — seriously!). So given that as an alternative … if I don't believe in deterministic objective reality, and instead that my experience of life as a being within a universe is actually quite intimate and personalized … then all else being equal, there's no reason to think that the weaving of experience around myself will cease just because I've woven myself into an unsustainable corner (i.e. my body, my physical interface, cannot go on). In fact, there are specific reasons to think it will continue, having to do with e.g. perception of self as independently extant…

Sorry if that is too deep too fast; hopefully it made sense! ^.^;
 

BabyTyrant

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I would consider myself Christian, but not in the 100% believe everything sense, in the grand scheme of things I basically believe if you are a good person on a good path (you dont have to save the world, do what you can within your means) the end outcome will be good, if not you will suffer for being a bad person and causing others to suffer.

I'm hoping whatever the exact outcome in the end that I can just be done and not have to be born again; to suffer again because the world is very messed up and the majority of the people suffer while there are a few people (like the 1%) that have an insane abundance of money that gives them an easy life with basically no suffering.

They say "Money Doesn't Buy Happiness", but you know what? In this world that we live in it is set up where we need money to survive, unless you run away to somewhere that doesn't use money and then you can make things/Hunt/Trade what you have for what you need and live in a "commune" without outside interference.

Otherwise you need money for Mortgage/Rent, Water, Electricity, Gas, Garbage, so on and so forth.

So does money buy happiness? Not directly, but having enough to live on with some excess (you dont have to be one of the 1%) for hobbies definitely makes for a better life than always being broke after you pay your bills and feed yourself/family.
 

mistral

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I essentially believe in the Buddhist notion of "reincarnation." It is a little difficult to explain, but the "nutshell" version of how I see things goes something like this:

As a matter of pragmatism, I try to take as little as possible on faith — ideally nothing. This does not lead me to a nihilistic conclusion however, because nihilism requires faith in an objective, indifferent universe as is conventionally perceived. But if I suspend my instinctive belief in objective physical reality as being the bedrock of existence, then what can I make of the universe, and of my experience of life within it? Buddhism (and, indeed, quantum physics) suggests that the universe is rather more connected to the individual observer than it appears. In some ways, you could think of it like weaving a world around yourself, with details being filled in as you go (this is really no exaggeration; in physics, you can influence events in the past by choice of measurement in the present — seriously!). So given that as an alternative … if I don't believe in deterministic objective reality, and instead that my experience of life as a being within a universe is actually quite intimate and personalized … then all else being equal, there's no reason to think that the weaving of experience around myself will cease just because I've woven myself into an unsustainable corner (i.e. my body, my physical interface, cannot go on). In fact, there are specific reasons to think it will continue, having to do with e.g. perception of self as independently extant…

Sorry if that is too deep too fast; hopefully it made sense! ^.^;
Wow. that's really interesting. Not sure I fully understand it though.
I don't really see why an objective, indifferent universe requires faith. Surely that would be the default position in the absence of any evidence to the contrary. I don't see any reason to believe the universe has a connection to me personally or that I am anything other than biology. My personality, feelings, "soul" if you like is just brain and when my brain stops working I cease to exist.
It would be great if you could expand on your ideas and perhaps dumb it down a bit for dopes like me!
 

Sapphyre

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Wow. that's really interesting. Not sure I fully understand it though.
I don't really see why an objective, indifferent universe requires faith. Surely that would be the default position in the absence of any evidence to the contrary. I don't see any reason to believe the universe has a connection to me personally or that I am anything other than biology. My personality, feelings, "soul" if you like is just brain and when my brain stops working I cease to exist.
It would be great if you could expand on your ideas and perhaps dumb it down a bit for dopes like me!
I will try!

All ideas and all knowledge are ultimately inferential; unless they just happen to be objectively correct, they are only human creations. A good example of this might be the "discovery" of Newton's inverse-square law of gravitation. We now know it to be completely wrong — space and time are not an immutable backdrop, gravity is not a force, its influence is not instantaneous, etc — but it works well as a useful approximation for most everyday purposes, despite being based on a whole slew of fundamentally wrong human ideas about reality. It is a human creation, a heuristic for modeling reality, but not a true reflection of it. Another example: relativistic physics introduced a notion of time that most find contradictory at first blush: two observers can simultaneously measure one another's clocks to be ticking slower than their own. The conventional notion of time, even if allowed to run at different rates somehow, does not permit such an occurrence — everyone would still be able to agree on whose clock was running slowest.

The point being that no matter how intuitively obvious a particular bit of knowledge may seem, you cannot know it to be true. This is why scientific theories can never be proven, but only disproved, and also why proofs in mathematics rely ultimately on unprovable axioms, and amount to saying "if we accept these axioms as true, then this theorem must also be true." If you have ceased to question any given idea — if you accept it as given — that is what I call faith, because you can't really know it is right. And if it's not, then you're stuck operating under that delusion until / unless something unequivocally challenges your belief. For this reason, I make a practice of calling out those ideas that I intuitively accept as just obviously valid, and try to see what the world looks like without that lens, if only for a brief glimpse. If I am unable to let go of a particular concept — for example, if I were unable to understand relativity due to being unable to stop assuming that physical events happen in a definite sequence in time — then either that concept just happens to be spot-on, or (much more likely) my faith is blinding me. (Side note: see the Ladder Paradox for a fantastic illustration of counter-intuitive relativistic shenanigans!)

This is why "WYSIWYG" is not my default position in absence of evidence to the contrary. I do not fully trust that any ideas or perceptions are ultimately right, only potentially useful as heuristics. Just like with Newtonian gravity, it's important to know when an idea is helpful and when the cracks begin to show.

If you accept objective reality as it conventionally appears, and by extension interpret your experiences as being based ultimately in this reality, then you must conclude that your experiences arise from your objectively extant body & brain and when it ceases, so will you. This is the nihilistic viewpoint, which hinges upon belief (faith) in an objective external universe. FWIW, modern physics gives plenty of reason to doubt that this is a correct grasp of reality. In particular, the notion of local realism is incompatible with quantum theory. But even absent such evidence, as a matter of principle, I suggest it is advantageous to at least entertain notions of existence that do not all depend on the same belief.

Does that help at all? o.o;
 
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mistral

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I will try!

All ideas and all knowledge are ultimately inferential; unless they just happen to be objectively correct, they are only human creations. A good example of this might be the "discovery" of Newton's inverse-square law of gravitation. We now know it to be completely wrong — space and time are not an immutable backdrop, gravity is not a force, its influence is not instantaneous, etc — but it works well as a useful approximation for most everyday purposes, despite being based on a whole slew of fundamentally wrong human ideas about reality. It is a human creation, a heuristic for modeling reality, but not a true reflection of it. Another example: relativistic physics introduced a notion of time that most find contradictory at first blush: two observers can simultaneously measure one another's clocks to be ticking slower than their own. The conventional notion of time, even if allowed to run at different rates somehow, does not permit such an occurrence — everyone would still be able to agree on whose clock was running slowest.

The point being that no matter how intuitively obvious a particular bit of knowledge may seem, you cannot know it to be true. This is why scientific theories can never be proven, but only disproved, and also why proofs in mathematics rely ultimately on unprovable axioms, and amount to saying "if we accept these axioms as true, then this theorem must also be true." If you have ceased to question any given idea — if you accept it as given — that is what I call faith, because you can't really know it is right. And if it's not, then you're stuck operating under that delusion until / unless something unequivocally challenges your belief. For this reason, I make a practice of calling out those ideas that I intuitively accept as just obviously valid, and try to see what the world looks like without that lens, if only for a brief glimpse. If I am unable to let go of a particular concept — for example, if I were unable to understand relativity due to being unable to stop assuming that physical events happen in a definite sequence in time — then either that concept just happens to be spot-on, or (much more likely) my faith is blinding me. (Side note: see the Ladder Paradox for a fantastic illustration of counter-intuitive relativistic shenanigans!)

This is why "WYSIWYG" is not my default position in absence of evidence to the contrary. I do not fully trust that any ideas or perceptions are ultimately right, only potentially useful as heuristics. Just like with Newtonian gravity, it's important to know when an idea is helpful and when the cracks begin to show.

If you accept objective reality as it conventionally appears, and by extension interpret your experiences as being based ultimately in this reality, then you must conclude that your experiences arise from your objectively extant body & brain and when it ceases, so will you. This is the nihilistic viewpoint, which hinges upon belief (faith) in an objective external universe. FWIW, modern physics gives plenty of reason to doubt that this is a correct grasp of reality. In particular, the notion of local realism is incompatible with quantum theory. But even absent such evidence, as a matter of principle, I suggest it is advantageous to at least entertain notions of existence that do not all depend on the same belief.

Does that help at all? o.o;
Thanks Sapphyre, yes that definitely helps.

It's an interesting area. We build our complex ideas on the foundations of truths which may actually not be objectively true! I sometime think our brains, perfectly evolved for our hunter gatherer ancestors, are just not capable of understanding so many things and we'll never unlock the mysteries of the universe.
 

Drifter

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I believe it's possible the mysteries of the universe have been unlocked numerous times by individuals, but that the information cannot be put into words.

As far as having a scientific understanding of the nature of physical realty, it seems every time there is a breakthrough in physics it is never conclusive in itself but leads only to deeper questions about the fundamental building blocks of the universe. A hundred years ago Einstein equated mass and energy, and ever since we have had a tendency to see mass as a form of energy in much the same way we see ice as a form of water. But this distinction between forms might just be an illusion caused by the limits of our perception and our need to label things. Mass and energy, and everything else in the universe, including illusions, might be composed of the same thing: a vibrating field. If I understand it correctly, the knowledge we've gained from experimenting with particle accelerators does not rule out this possibility, and even supports it to some extent.
 

Lestat

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I am Atheist I think we live only once. When we die. We are dead. So Live every day like it is your last day.
 

Nam Repaid

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Bender: Afterlife? Pfft. If I'd thought I had to go through a whole 'nother life, I'd kill myself right now.
 
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