Coping with death
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13-06-2016, 01:11 AM
Coping with death
I want to understand how any of us unbelievers can cope meaningfully with our own mortality. Can one be spiritual and be atheist? If death is just void nothingness, why did we have life at all? Should we look forward to death for any reason ? How do we not fear it, yet know it will occur?

These are jumbled thoughts and I'm not really looking for answers. More just discussion of the subject.
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13-06-2016, 01:16 AM
RE: Coping with death
Welcome to TTA.

As this is for general discussion rather than a personal issue, I'll move it to the Philosophy section.

Nice to meet you.

Smile

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13-06-2016, 01:52 AM
RE: Coping with death
The End is the end of all the bullshit.
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13-06-2016, 02:22 AM
RE: Coping with death
(13-06-2016 01:11 AM)Nzy7482 Wrote:  I want to understand how any of us unbelievers can cope meaningfully with our own mortality.

Understand that it awaits you no matter what you do, and live your life accordingly.

(13-06-2016 01:11 AM)Nzy7482 Wrote:  Can one be spiritual and be atheist?

That depends on how you define "spirituality". I define it as a sense of connectedness large enough to inspire awe. I'm awestruck by the fact that the atoms in my body are the ashes of an exploded star. I'm awestruck by the fact that light, which travels so instantaneously in my living room, also traverses a universe billions of LY wide to be caprtured by my retinæ -- that tells me how small I really am. That is humility.

(13-06-2016 01:11 AM)Nzy7482 Wrote:  If death is just void nothingness, why did we have life at all?

Why are we here?
Because we're here --
roll the bones.


(13-06-2016 01:11 AM)Nzy7482 Wrote:  Should we look forward to death for any reason ?

I don't, but I also know that what I like doesn't matter.

(13-06-2016 01:11 AM)Nzy7482 Wrote:  How do we not fear it, yet know it will occur?

By confronting it and surviving.

(13-06-2016 01:11 AM)Nzy7482 Wrote:  These are jumbled thoughts and I'm not really looking for answers. More just discussion of the subject.

I gave you what answers have occurred to me in my time here. Hope you find them useful.
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13-06-2016, 04:00 AM
RE: Coping with death
Difficulty with mortality is one of the reasons I came here. I am grateful to have the sounding board of like minded people who do not mock me for my senseless worrying. Those with religious beliefs have comfort in knowing as long as they are good soldiers and do as their doctrine dictates the afterlife is full of "wow!!". It is a little harder to be happy about death, as many of these people are, when you know (or at least I am pretty damn sure, there's that hopeful agnostic in me), that death is truly "the end". I struggle to cope with it every single damn day.

I wish more people cared about the earth as much as they care about who they believe created it
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13-06-2016, 04:23 AM (This post was last modified: 13-06-2016 04:43 AM by jennybee.)
RE: Coping with death
Hi Welcome Smile

I am an atheist but I do consider myself to be somewhat spiritual as I practice yoga and have incorporated many yogic principles into my life. I'm also a former Christian and on occasion still go to church because it makes my mom happy. I also still celebrate Christmas. And I read the Bible as I enjoy reading it from a purely academic, cultural, historical, and literary point of view. I also enjoy learning about other culture's religious beliefs.

All that said, I don't believe in any god or gods and do not follow any religious path. There are many different kinds of atheists. I think each person needs to define for themselves what the term atheist means to them.

We can live meaningful lives without Religion. We can love our families, take time to help others, enjoy living lives that make us happy, and try to leave the world a little better off than when we found it.

Death, unfortunately is inevitable for all of us. Its very presence makes us all realize that life is temporary. We are all only here for a short time. As such, we need to make the most of our lives and love who we want and work the type of jobs that we want and spend time with our loved ones and go on adventures and not let life pass us by. No sitting on the sidelines.

We do need to have a healthy fear of death because that's what helps us to survive. But I don't think we should live our lives obsessed with fearing death because well, that's not really living and it takes time away from life and life experiences.

I don't fear death itself because I view it as nothingness. The process of death, being in pain etc. is something I fear. All of it is a part of life, a part of living. The alternative is that we would never get to be here at all--never get to experience things, never get to love, never get to be inspired, never get to create, never get to share special times with others. I try and hold on to that and focus on living instead of the idea of death.
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13-06-2016, 04:52 AM
RE: Coping with death
(13-06-2016 01:52 AM)carusmm Wrote:  The End is the end of all the bullshit.


Nature is the foundation of positive observations.

[Image: E3WvRwZ.gif]
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13-06-2016, 05:23 AM
RE: Coping with death
(13-06-2016 01:11 AM)Nzy7482 Wrote:  I want to understand how any of us unbelievers can cope meaningfully with our own mortality. Can one be spiritual and be atheist? If death is just void nothingness, why did we have life at all? Should we look forward to death for any reason ? How do we not fear it, yet know it will occur?

These are jumbled thoughts and I'm not really looking for answers. More just discussion of the subject.

Looking forward to death....

Over a year ago, my dad has diabetes and was dealing with having his leg amputated, he told me he was ready to die. It's been an ongoing battle of medications that cloud his mind, literally losing parts of his body as diabetes stakes it's claim on his mortality.

Yet.....

Over a year later, he gets around on a prosthetic leg and wheelchair, he's had the best relationship with my mom he's ever had, since they both realize time is short.
Sometimes, it sucks, but there are still those moments where you can share and receive love from those around you, life is still worth living.

Maybe that's a form of spirituality, coping with death, coping with life and accepting it on it's own terms, and realizing you ultimately have no control, but you can try to enjoy the time you have left.

Gods derive their power from post-hoc rationalizations. -The Inquisition

Using the supernatural to explain events in your life is a failure of the intellect to comprehend the world around you. -The Inquisition
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13-06-2016, 05:25 AM
RE: Coping with death
dont be so envious of theists' apparent embracing of death. ive seen a lot of tears shed at funerals that say otherwise. i think deep down most of them know that they are kidding themselves, and it really hits them when a close loved one dies.
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13-06-2016, 05:35 AM
RE: Coping with death
(13-06-2016 05:25 AM)Dark Wanderer Wrote:  dont be so envious of theists' apparent embracing of death. ive seen a lot of tears shed at funerals that say otherwise. i think deep down most of them know that they are kidding themselves, and it really hits them when a close loved one dies.

The flip side of that fantasy world is that some of their loved ones aren't going to heaven, some of them will go to hell according to their beliefs.

That is certainly not reassuring.

A former friend of mind is a fundamentalist. One of our mutual friends from over 20 years was murdered in an apartment fire. He was Japanese and was definitely not Christian.

20 years later, I let him know I don't believe in his god anymore, so I'm headed there as well, according to his belief system.

That would be one of the first things I would ask him if a I saw him again. Both of his best friends will be in hell according to his beliefs, does he really want to accept that? Does that belief really give him comfort? How does that work?

Gods derive their power from post-hoc rationalizations. -The Inquisition

Using the supernatural to explain events in your life is a failure of the intellect to comprehend the world around you. -The Inquisition
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