“We all die. The goal isn’t to live forever, the goal is to create something that will”Chuck Palahniuk
Hello, I know that this is not the happiest topic you can talk about, but you must have thought about it at least once in your life. Death is our fate. We are all going to leave this world one day. However, there are plenty of theories about the afterlife. Each religion has its own version about it and we’re gonna have a look at them. When it comes to death, only two things can happen. Your life will either end for good or it will continue in a different way. These are the only plausible scenarios about death. Let’s have a look at the most famous scenarios about the afterlife.
Heaven and hell
According to Zoroastrians, Christians and Muslims, when a person dies, his/her soul goes to a supernatural place. There are two supernatural worlds where souls reside, once they leave the natural world. These are of course, heaven and hell. As you probably know, the place that your soul will go depends on the life you lived as a human. Righteous people go to heaven, while amoral people go to hell. That’s the whole concept of this thing. This person will remain in one of these places eternally, next to God or Devil. To my great surprise, the people that founded the concepts of paradise and hell were the Zoroastrians. They were the first ones that talked about these “worlds”. I found out about this, when I was doing some research about this post. Jews, Christians and Muslims had adopted the concepts of heaven and hell, from the Persian religion.
Fun fact: According to Zoroastrians, when someone dies he/she is led by an angel to the Chinawad or Chinavat Bridge, where his deeds are reviewed. If this person was good then he will be allowed to enter heaven. If not, he will be cast to the “world of punishment“
Fun fact 2: Jews do not believe in Heaven and hell! They believe that once a person dies, he goes to some sort of abyss, where he/she rests there for eternity. This abyss is called “Sheol“. For more info, look here https://www.myjewishlearning.com/article/heaven-and-hell-in-jewish-tradition/
According to various religions that support this view, we only live once. Then our soul departs to its final destination, to stay there for eternity. This means that whoever dies, never returns back. And that also means that there are no alive witnesses of heaven and hell, since no-one has ever returned from the dead, to tell us what they saw (that’s what many religions claim anyway). As you can understand, this is a major problem with this narrative, since nobody can verify the existence of these places. Of course, you are still free to believe in these things, I’m just pointing out the flaws they have. This was just one theory about the afterlife. There are more and we will have a look at them right now.
NOTE: Christians claim that in Second Advent, Jesus Christ will return once again and all dead people will be resurrected and live among us. This was mentioned in many Christian texts such as the Gospels and the apocalypse (I’m not very good in religious matters, If I have written something that is not true, please correct me)
Some religions believe in reincarnation. This belief suggests that, once you die, you return to this world, as a human or as a different being, such as Animal, insect etc. The most famous religion that supports this belief is Hinduism. Hinduists believe that we live many lives in this world. They believe that life,death and rebirth is a process that repeats itself, over and over (This thing is called Samsara by the way). Also, there’s a fundamental concept in this religion called Karma. Whoever does good deeds, will have good karma and whoever does bad deeds will have bad karma. If you have good karma, you will be rewarded in the next life, by becoming a superior life form. If not, you are punished by becoming an inferior being. This is how it works according to Hinduists.
This view is actually very simple. It suggests that when you die, this is it. Death is the end of all life and you rest for good, once you “leave” this world. Mostly atheists and agnostics are the ones that support this view. According to this theory, you feel nothing and you experience nothing, once you depart from this “realm”. That doesn’t sound so bad actually. For many people, it can be redeeming to find peace in the afterlife.
These were some of the most widespread ideas about death. There might be other theories too on this matter, but I have only spoken about the most famous ones. If you know any other theories, let me know in the comments. Now, I want to ask you something. Do you remember something before your birth? Do you have any memories at all, before this moment? Well, I guess you don’t. The only thing that we can remember before our births is blackness. Why shouldn’t the same thing apply after death? Why would it be any different? And at the very end, why would God or Devil even care if you were righteous or not? Don’t they have any other matters to attend to? When it comes to the afterlife, I pretty much believe that we will rest for good once we depart from this world. I do have some arguments to support my view, but I can’t be 100% sure on this. I do believe though, that this is the dominant scenario about death. I rule out the possibility of heaven and hell, but I leave an open window for Reincarnation.
These were my thoughts on the afterlife. What do you guys think? Do you believe any of the dominant theories about death? Or you support a different view on this matter? Tell me in the comments what you think.
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