Atheism and the afterlife.
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09-09-2012, 03:16 PM
Lightbulb Atheism and the afterlife.
While I think it is fair to say that the vast majority of Atheists do not believe in an afterlife, being an Atheist does not contradict the idea of an afterlife. For example, I can be an Atheist who believes that there is something, undetected by science (so far), that is me. Not my body, or mind, or memories, but my personality. Of course I am attempting to describe a soul, or spirit. While there is no scientific proof of a soul, it has not, and perhaps can not be disproved, however unlikely YOU believe it is (Please save the "Like God" comparisons). While I am compelled to believe that once our brains quit, then that's just it, I have toyed with the idea of reincarnation; daydreamed would perhaps be more accurate. It is only natural after all, who doesn't want to exist forever? Or at least longer than the short spec of time that we have. Even if you believe in infinite parallel universes the "real you" will cease to be upon death. Of coarse there are other, simpler concepts of life after death such as Gaea recycling you, or even your atoms being used over and over again (which is scientific fact), but that is not the type of afterlife I wished to address.

Thoughts? Do any of the Atheists here ascribe to the idea of a afterlife?

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09-09-2012, 03:20 PM
RE: Atheism and the afterlife.
i would enjoy having my memory wiped every 100 years. all the people who knew me would be so confused.

When you are courting a nice girl an hour seems like a second. When you sit on a red-hot cinder a second seems like an hour. That's relativity.

You cannot successfully determine beforehand which side of the bread to butter.
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09-09-2012, 03:31 PM (This post was last modified: 09-09-2012 03:34 PM by Vosur.)
RE: Atheism and the afterlife.
(09-09-2012 03:16 PM)Dark Light Wrote:  While there is no scientific proof of a soul, it has not, and perhaps can not be disproved, however unlikely YOU believe it is (Please save the "Like God" comparisons)
That depends on your definition of 'soul'. If a soul is for you your personality, then it can and has already been disproven. We know that our personality is formed by our brain. We know that brain damage can complete alter or wipe out someone's personality. And don't make me mention severe cases of Amnesia where people don't even know who they themselves are. I think it was GirlyMan who said that the idea of a post-preserved identity is completely absurd. How is that even supposed to work?

(09-09-2012 03:16 PM)Dark Light Wrote:  Thoughts? Do any of the Atheists here ascribe to the idea of a afterlife?
I used to believe in an afterlife back when I was a Christian. I dropped this belief along with Christianity once I became an Atheist because I realized that there is first of all no evidence to support it and that it is secondly nothing but wishful thinking to belief in a life after death.

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09-09-2012, 03:44 PM
RE: Atheism and the afterlife.
I believe in an afterlife, but it is not the kind that religious people think of. To me, my afterlife will be the memories and writings that I leave behind, not to mention the genes that my children and grandchildren will pass on (that is if they have kids themselves). I am known for my sense of humor. People may not remember the silly things I've said, but they will remember that I made them laugh and pass that info onto their family and friends. I plan to get a doctorate in Primatology, so my writings will surely influence those in the next generation who wish to follow in my footsteps.
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09-09-2012, 04:05 PM
RE: Atheism and the afterlife.
(09-09-2012 03:16 PM)Dark Light Wrote:  While I think it is fair to say that the vast majority of Atheists do not believe in an afterlife, being an Atheist does not contradict the idea of an afterlife. For example, I can be an Atheist who believes that there is something, undetected by science (so far), that is me. Not my body, or mind, or memories, but my personality. Of course I am attempting to describe a soul, or spirit. While there is no scientific proof of a soul, it has not, and perhaps can not be disproved, however unlikely YOU believe it is (Please save the "Like God" comparisons). While I am compelled to believe that once our brains quit, then that's just it, I have toyed with the idea of reincarnation; daydreamed would perhaps be more accurate. It is only natural after all, who doesn't want to exist forever? Or at least longer than the short spec of time that we have. Even if you believe in infinite parallel universes the "real you" will cease to be upon death. Of coarse there are other, simpler concepts of life after death such as Gaea recycling you, or even your atoms being used over and over again (which is scientific fact), but that is not the type of afterlife I wished to address.

Thoughts? Do any of the Atheists here ascribe to the idea of a afterlife?
Well, I do. I wrote about it multiple times, for example here. And then here.

The following is a description of a philosophy, not a claim.
This is a physical, material concept of the existence of many forms and degrees of subtle matter, that we are life forms consisting of multiple layers - or better said, full and permeating spheres of different material density, each "sphere" bigger and subtler than the other, but also more resilient and long-lived, less prone to entropy. Each "sphere" (more like an oval actually) is a body of its own, semi-independent, but together they form a modular personality that we have, they contribute to the shades of our consciousness, though no more than the biologic brain can express.
As long as we are alive, the biologic brain is the final bottleneck of consciousness, until death allows us to retreat to a higher body and greater clarity and have a generally pleasant period of afterlife.

The biologic man or woman is then a kernel of flesh that was precipitated inside the higher bodies, offered as an opportunity and instrument to act in the dense-material world. As such it is a very important instrument. But the actual consciousness comes from the higher bodies, so when the biologic body dies, it is not the end. There is a couple more vehicles that can dissolve too, without fatal consequences. Of course, growing the new body or bodies for the purpose of reincarnation results in blank brain, wiped memories. Except perhaps some anomalies that we read about in news, children remembering past lives or speaking fluently a language they didn't learn. Perhaps all life knowledge is saved, only we can't get to it yet. There must be something that gets transferred from life to life so we don't start as tabula rasa, perhaps a shade of skills, talents and the quality of a body itself - or a better experience how to build it. How to build a set of bodies that communicate together really well and better obey a hierarchic order, allowing the person to stream inspirative ideas "from above" and to make the physical body and emotions submit to reason, for example. That might be a thing that distinguishes an "old soul" and a genius since childhood from the average.

Such is the working theory I use. I find it very useful to deal with the experience I have. I find it very "realistic", as we know, our dense matter is just a small part of the various exotic invisible stuffs that comprise the universe. It might as well be the case, that in most of reality there is no death or even sleep, that death is a biologic phenomenon.
Very probably, there is no time either as we know it, our biologic brain determines our perception of time. I'd say in subtle worlds the time is more relative, there is no rule that 1 hour there should last 1 hour here, only the order of events is given. There are some hints it is actually stranger than that, that all past events exist simultaneously and some near future events perhaps too - only their order of manifestation is not given yet, that is determined by the present moment. Like braiding the strands together. It is an occult rule, that events precipitate from above, from the worlds of causes, to this world of outwardly events and consequences. But we get to choose when, how and if.

The implications of this philosophy are countless, so I just believe those I have experience with and those logically necessary from the experience. Of course, I don't remember any past lives, but I've seen enough indirect signs to be very certain that this is basically how it works.
Of course, I'm not eager to hurry there. Getting born and growing up was a pain in the ass and I have no intention of repeating that ordeal any time soon! I want to stay healthy and live long. And have fun in life when I finally get it going in the right direction, just like all other atheists.

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09-09-2012, 04:12 PM (This post was last modified: 09-09-2012 04:17 PM by Marco Krieger.)
RE: Atheism and the afterlife.
I like to try out a joke, please let me know if it work's, because i translated by myself:

"Sure, there is an life after death, but is there once befor?"

So much for the fun-part, and now to something complete differend...
I think, there is no afterlife at all, but my opinion is, that my life have an impact to others, like my daughter and my wife and so forth.
Thats it.
I am not interesting enough to be remembered forever, even a few 100 years whould be to much.
Leonardo da Vince was an extraordinary painter and scientist, he invented so many things and new ideas, to post them all whould create a whole new website.
He has, even today great influence on manys peoples minds, but he was also a egomaniac asshole and had have bad habits. He screamed and cursed the whole day, sometimes he hit's a model that fell asleep during a paintingsession.
And he never pay his rent's...
I never want to be remembert like this, more horrifying the idea, i were able to remember myself all the things i said and done. FOR ETERNITY...
Never mind,if it's time to go, i take the exit-door to the great, black, nothing, from which i came.
I the meantime i try to make people more laughing and less crying.

If atheism is a religion, then not playing football is an Olympic discipline.
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09-09-2012, 04:46 PM
RE: Atheism and the afterlife.
Dear Luminon,
you do what all religious people allways do.(I am not sure, but you sound's like on.)
Hundreds of words to say a simple sentence:

"I'm afraid to die!"

There is no escape, regardless what whe say and do and hope, we all gonne die!
But we have a life, right now and her, lets make the best of it, lets make it remakable, not least for ourselves.

Sure, i'm afraid to die, but if thats the only thought in my mind, my life turned into a nightmare.

If atheism is a religion, then not playing football is an Olympic discipline.
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09-09-2012, 05:13 PM
RE: Atheism and the afterlife.
Its comforting to think of an afterlife.... to think that I will meet my friends and loved ones when I eventually croak and leave this mortal coil.

Its a human concept though in my opinion, probably caused by fear of the unknown and fuelled by "faith".... in a universe that has been here looooong before we even came about.

If there is something.... after the electric signals in my brain that are programmed to react in a certain way without my "will" fade away.... then I wont have my brain and nervous system anymore...... so it will be unrecognisable, it will be completly alien to me and outside of everything I know about existence up until that moment in time.

I may not even realise/comprehend that I had been alive and died if I exist in some other form.... maybe electomagnetic I dont know.

I think all forms of afterlife come from religion (and the modern version... spiritualism), all ideas/information we have that make up our views on this, wether we like it or not are based upon other peoples thoughts and teachings.

For no matter how much I use these symbols, to describe symptoms of my existence.
You are your own emphasis.
So I say nothing.

-Bemore.
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09-09-2012, 07:21 PM
RE: Atheism and the afterlife.
(09-09-2012 04:05 PM)Luminon Wrote:  
(09-09-2012 03:16 PM)Dark Light Wrote:  While I think it is fair to say that the vast majority of Atheists do not believe in an afterlife, being an Atheist does not contradict the idea of an afterlife. For example, I can be an Atheist who believes that there is something, undetected by science (so far), that is me. Not my body, or mind, or memories, but my personality. Of course I am attempting to describe a soul, or spirit. While there is no scientific proof of a soul, it has not, and perhaps can not be disproved, however unlikely YOU believe it is (Please save the "Like God" comparisons). While I am compelled to believe that once our brains quit, then that's just it, I have toyed with the idea of reincarnation; daydreamed would perhaps be more accurate. It is only natural after all, who doesn't want to exist forever? Or at least longer than the short spec of time that we have. Even if you believe in infinite parallel universes the "real you" will cease to be upon death. Of coarse there are other, simpler concepts of life after death such as Gaea recycling you, or even your atoms being used over and over again (which is scientific fact), but that is not the type of afterlife I wished to address.

Thoughts? Do any of the Atheists here ascribe to the idea of a afterlife?
Well, I do. I wrote about it multiple times, for example here. And then here.

The following is a description of a philosophy, not a claim.
This is a physical, material concept of the existence of many forms and degrees of subtle matter, that we are life forms consisting of multiple layers - or better said, full and permeating spheres of different material density, each "sphere" bigger and subtler than the other, but also more resilient and long-lived, less prone to entropy. Each "sphere" (more like an oval actually) is a body of its own, semi-independent, but together they form a modular personality that we have, they contribute to the shades of our consciousness, though no more than the biologic brain can express.
As long as we are alive, the biologic brain is the final bottleneck of consciousness, until death allows us to retreat to a higher body and greater clarity and have a generally pleasant period of afterlife.

The biologic man or woman is then a kernel of flesh that was precipitated inside the higher bodies, offered as an opportunity and instrument to act in the dense-material world. As such it is a very important instrument. But the actual consciousness comes from the higher bodies, so when the biologic body dies, it is not the end. There is a couple more vehicles that can dissolve too, without fatal consequences. Of course, growing the new body or bodies for the purpose of reincarnation results in blank brain, wiped memories. Except perhaps some anomalies that we read about in news, children remembering past lives or speaking fluently a language they didn't learn. Perhaps all life knowledge is saved, only we can't get to it yet. There must be something that gets transferred from life to life so we don't start as tabula rasa, perhaps a shade of skills, talents and the quality of a body itself - or a better experience how to build it. How to build a set of bodies that communicate together really well and better obey a hierarchic order, allowing the person to stream inspirative ideas "from above" and to make the physical body and emotions submit to reason, for example. That might be a thing that distinguishes an "old soul" and a genius since childhood from the average.

Such is the working theory I use. I find it very useful to deal with the experience I have. I find it very "realistic", as we know, our dense matter is just a small part of the various exotic invisible stuffs that comprise the universe. It might as well be the case, that in most of reality there is no death or even sleep, that death is a biologic phenomenon.
Very probably, there is no time either as we know it, our biologic brain determines our perception of time. I'd say in subtle worlds the time is more relative, there is no rule that 1 hour there should last 1 hour here, only the order of events is given. There are some hints it is actually stranger than that, that all past events exist simultaneously and some near future events perhaps too - only their order of manifestation is not given yet, that is determined by the present moment. Like braiding the strands together. It is an occult rule, that events precipitate from above, from the worlds of causes, to this world of outwardly events and consequences. But we get to choose when, how and if.

The implications of this philosophy are countless, so I just believe those I have experience with and those logically necessary from the experience. Of course, I don't remember any past lives, but I've seen enough indirect signs to be very certain that this is basically how it works.
Of course, I'm not eager to hurry there. Getting born and growing up was a pain in the ass and I have no intention of repeating that ordeal any time soon! I want to stay healthy and live long. And have fun in life when I finally get it going in the right direction, just like all other atheists.

I'm too fucking tired to bother this time, Lumi.

I just drove 325 miles (523 km) with my ex-wife. While there is no afterlife, there is a hell.

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Science is not a subject, but a method.
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09-09-2012, 07:49 PM
RE: Atheism and the afterlife.
While I will agree with you that being an atheist does not mean the omitting of an afterlife, I think it is important to be just as skeptical about these things as it is to be about a god or gods. The majority of the reason many of us are atheist is because we are skeptical about things. We look at evidence, we use it to make decisions and we don't believe in things for no good reason.

Things I often think of when people say "Soul":

- What is a soul?
- How do you know what a soul is?
- Is a soul physical or something we cannot explain?
- How do you know we even have one?
- Where did the idea of a soul come from?

I think these are important things to think about, to consider. It seems to be very much in our dna and in our brains as a coping mechanism to deal with our mortality. It seems to help us go on with existing. So of course it is comforting, blanketing even, to consider the idea of a soul or afterlife and suppose that your life has this grand meaning and that your essence (whatever that may be) once you die goes somewhere else and is reused.

But here's a fun and interesting way that even an atheist is actually reincarnated. Ready for this?

You will someday be reused by the universe. Yes. You will.

There was a time in the universe when I was just a bunch of atoms. Something amazing happened. A star was born, our sun. During that time as bits of dust and rock formed, as our solar system formed, all the atoms being used to do this and the process that it took also utilized the atoms and energy that someday YOU would end up being. These atoms came from another star or multiple stars that at one point in time dispersed and fed a nursery of stars to create the star that we see now. Someday, billions of years from now, our sun will begin to swell and will consume planets. There will be this huge, dramatic and violent destruction of life in our solar system.

After our sun dies, it'll leave behind a white dwarf. Which depending on the energy it consumes someday, may end up going out in a WILD explosion, supernova and become a nursery for stars where our atoms will again be reused, perhaps create another solar system or more stars. Perhaps again life? Hard to tell, the statistical chance of that is next to none. But you will again be part of the universe.

You are, right now, in essence... the universe looking at itself.

Do you really need an afterlife to know that and appreciate that? I think that is a pretty fucking AWESOME fact. I wouldn't give that up for anything.
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