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Do you think theres an afterlife? Watch

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    (Original post by miser)
    I think you might've misunderstood my views or else I miscommunicated them - I don't think linear time is an illusion; what I think is that if it weren't linear, we wouldn't be able to tell. Either way, from any point in time that we would describe as being after my death (whether in a literal or non-literal sense), there would exist no perspective that could be said to be mine, and in that sense, I would not exist.
    I guess I must've done, as I thought you were basically concurring with Einstein's view that "The distinction between past, present, and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion", in which case there would be no "after your death".
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    (Original post by Ziggy Sawdust)
    I guess I must've done, as I thought you were basically concurring with Einstein's view that "The distinction between past, present, and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion", in which case there would be no "after your death".
    Well, in our case, whether past and future are illusory or not, I think Einstein is indeed dead (or at least not currently extant). If there does come a point at which others would consider me to be dead in the same way, I expect, from their perspective, they'd be correct.

    Nevertheless, I don't think that Einstein's view implies the existence of an 'afterlife'. It, too, might be inconsistent, since it, too, seems to rely on a linear conception of time (i.e., according to popular understanding, you must be dead before you can be in an afterlife).

    Thank you for reading my blog by the way. Much appreciated.
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    (Original post by miser)
    Well, in our case, whether past and future are illusory or not, I think Einstein is indeed dead (or at least not currently extant). If there does come a point at which others would consider me to be dead in the same way, I expect, from their perspective, they'd be correct.
    He's dead relative to you and I as observers sure, but from another frame of reference he might not be. In your essay you say "the concept of ‘now’ has no physical definition because time is relative and necessarily attached to location in space.." If you cannot define 'now' in any absolute sense, then how can you say with any certainty whether somebody is dead or not? The best you can do is to give an interpretation from an arbitrary frame of reference.

    (Original post by miser)
    Nevertheless, I don't think that Einstein's view implies the existence of an 'afterlife'. It, too, might be inconsistent, since it, too, seems to rely on a linear conception of time (i.e., according to popular understanding, you must be dead before you can be in an afterlife).
    From the perspective of any individual who shared an overlapping frame of reference with the deceased, the person would indeed appear to be dead. But the ability of the deceased to perceive is not lost, it is merely unobservable to those restricted to certain location in space and time.

    (Original post by miser)
    Thank you for reading my blog by the way. Much appreciated.
    Not at all, it was a plessure to read.
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    No, unless any evidence surfaces which demonstrates that there is an afterlife, I won't believe in one.

    The classical mechanism by which one can supposedly live after death is a soul, a notion which, in my view, was disproven a long time ago, and is not taken seriously in neuroscience and psychology. The mind - essentially, everything we know and can do - is the product of the brain. If you damage one portion of the brain, the part of the mind which that part governs often ceases to be functional: if you damaged your hippocampus, it'd be extremely difficult to form long-term memories. And, when you damage the neocortex and other linguistic parts of the brain, your ability to communicate is severely impeded.

    So, the concept that when our whole brain stops functioning, we can suddenly think again and remember our families and our experiences seems virtually impossible to me.

    When we die, the atoms which make up our body will go back to the environment from which they came. They've been on a long journey - from the furnaces of stars, through space after a supernova event to, eventually, making us what and who we are. And, after that, they will be decomposed by some bacteria and make up a future ecosystem. The atoms may be eternal, but we're probably not.
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    (Original post by empdc)
    want your opinions. do you think theres an afterlife or does everything just end?
    There probably isn't.
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    (Original post by thunder_chunky)
    There probably isn't.
    thats sad to think that someone you care about could be gone but at least theres no pain any more
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    (Original post by empdc)
    thats sad to think that someone you care about could be gone but at least theres no pain any more
    I'd rather not build false hope personally and within my children should I ever have them.
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    I hope not tbh. I want to be just dead and gone.
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    Yes ofcourse. Why am i so sure? Because we are so concious of one that we have to ask ourselves this question. What is the point of this life without an afterlife. We are made up of mainly hydrogen and oxygen, easily transferrable materials. What is the point of black holes and all those discoveries were encountering every day. How were we created so perfectly. God knows. Are we forgetting people all around the world dont have the great lives we do? Children dying at the age of 12,11, 10 what happens to these people when they die? Also we all have a soul And a self, both concious of each other so do they both die? Think:confused:
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    Yes I do believe in an afterlife.
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    (Original post by DouglasAdams)
    Firstly, I regard life as no less precious than you do simply because you believe that death is the end.
    Secondly, we were discussing eternity and according to yourself its morbidity (no pun intended) versus my belief that eternity simply boggles the mind and cannot be fully understood and thus cannot be classed as a bad thing. I gathered that you were able to deal with the hypothetical of eternity (as you made it clear already that you don't believe in it), and for you to simply terminate the discussion by dismissing the hypothetical as nonsense because you don't believe in it, greatly undermines the discussion we were having.
    I say, do you think flying pigs would make good pets?

    Jokes aside, I think you are being disingenuous, since the only reason anybody ever believes in eternal life is because they believe it would be a good thing (or at least, better than death).

    As for whether or not eternity as a thing actually exists or is meaningful in any way, that is a question of Physics really. It could be that time, when conceptualised into vector space as a fourth dimension, is limited just as the finite 3D space is limited (although expanding at a faster and faster rate).
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    (Original post by Ziggy Sawdust)
    He's dead relative to you and I as observers sure, but from another frame of reference he might not be. In your essay you say "the concept of ‘now’ has no physical definition because time is relative and necessarily attached to location in space.." If you cannot define 'now' in any absolute sense, then how can you say with any certainty whether somebody is dead or not? The best you can do is to give an interpretation from an arbitrary frame of reference.
    Yes, you're absolutely right. This is why I was particular with my wording (though I suppose I could have been more particular). From our perspective, he is dead. "If there does come a point at which others would consider me to be dead in the same way, I expect, from their perspective, they'd be correct," but it would not necessarily be correct from other perspectives.

    (Original post by Ziggy Sawdust)
    From the perspective of any individual who shared an overlapping frame of reference with the deceased, the person would indeed appear to be dead. But the ability of the deceased to perceive is not lost, it is merely unobservable to those restricted to certain location in space and time.
    Yeah, this could be totally true. But we have to be careful to restrict our definition of an individual if we're to say a past person's ability to perceive is not lost. From my perspective, the date is 17th April. If time is not linear and myriad moments exist "simultaneously" or in singularity, then there may also exist a perspective that is also "mine" where the date is 16th April, 18th April, or any such date where "I" exist.

    However, from my perspective, there is only one date - not several. I am, in fact, wholly distinct from these other perspectives, and they may as well be completely separate persons whom I simply happen to inhereit from or provide inheritance to, depending on their temporal relation to me. In this sense, my ability to perceive certainly is lost - at least in a way we wouldn't usually consider it to be - when considering any other of "my" perspectives except the one I am typing to you from right now.

    True, this perspective may remain in existence nonetheless, but from my successors' perspectives, it will, and I will, be lost forever. I suppose it's fine to say that I will continue to perceive (that is, supposing each moment is lasts long enough to do that), but the language of this is a little misleading. I would be perceiving, just not in the sense we would usually understand it, i.e., of drifting into the future as I did it.

    I hope this was scrutable enough - it's quite difficult to talk about these subjects with any clarity as I find our language is ill-equipped for it.

    (Original post by Ziggy Sawdust)
    Not at all, it was a plessure to read.
    I appreciate your saying so.

    Edit: Although, I suppose it's inaccurate to say that my present perspective would be "lost forever", since my future counterparts would never have had in their possession anyway.
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    it would be nice if there were an afterlife. we don't seem to get all aerated about the beforelife do we ?
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    After your death, you will get the answer.

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    (Original post by viddy9)
    So, the concept that when our whole brain stops functioning, we can suddenly think again and remember our families and our experiences seems virtually impossible to me.

    When we die, the atoms which make up our body will go back to the environment from which they came. They've been on a long journey - from the furnaces of stars, through space after a supernova event to, eventually, making us what and who we are. And, after that, they will be decomposed by some bacteria and make up a future ecosystem. The atoms may be eternal, but we're probably not.
    Would you agree then that what makes us who we are is the unique structure of our brain? The atoms themselves can play no part in shaping us as individuals as they are all the identical to one another, and they are replaced several times over during our lifetimes anyhow. It is, rather, the pattern in which the atoms are arranged that permits our unique perspective to emerge and allows us to perceive reality?

    If you agree with the above then you must surely be led to ask he question: what's to stop this pattern emerging again? The answer is that there is absolutely nothing in theory to prevent this from happening. You would probably argue that it would be inconceivably unlikely for precisely the same pattern to emerge again, and you'd be right. Until, that is, you realise that there are only a finite number of ways in which matter (atoms) can be arranged, and that if the universe is spatially infinite , which data from WMAP shows it almost certainly is, then all patterns will eventually repeat, including the precise pattern that forms your consciousness. When you introduce infinity (spatial or temporal) into a non-zero statistical probability calculation you always end up with with a probability of 1; anything physically possible, no matter how improbable, will inevitably happen. So we must come to the conclusion that the pattern which encodes the sum total of everything you are: your DNA, personality, memories, opinions etc will inevitably repeat, and an afterlife is thus a certainty.
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    I certainly hope there is! But no I don't believe in it, and I think that's one of the problems with the whole idea of the afterlife. This will probably sound a bit controversial but I think a lot of the time, people believe in one because they WANT there to be one.
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    It's a nice thought and I don't want to believe that after death there's nothing, and also it's so unfair for the people that went through crappy things in their lives as if they've been good people they can have an eternity of bliss which would more than make up for it, also it gives people something to look forward to so they can forget their problems and strive to make a place for themselves in heaven in the afterlife. But obviously I know we can never prove or disprove an afterlife, and we'll just have to wait till the end to find out I guess.
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    No.
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    (Original post by felamaslen)
    I say, do you think flying pigs would make good pets?

    Jokes aside, I think you are being disingenuous, since the only reason anybody ever believes in eternal life is because they believe it would be a good thing (or at least, better than death).

    As for whether or not eternity as a thing actually exists or is meaningful in any way, that is a question of Physics really. It could be that time, when conceptualised into vector space as a fourth dimension, is limited just as the finite 3D space is limited (although expanding at a faster and faster rate).
    There is no need to resort to petty insults, although for the record I would love to own a flying pig.
    People do not only belive in eternal life because they prefer it to death; if often goes hand in hand with the teachings of religion. Not everyone follows their religion simply because they're afraid of death.
    You're considering time's role in eternity and how it would function, whereas I am referring to what it would be like to "live" within that state of eternity, the two being extremely different.
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    I personally don't of late, and esp. Since watching this morning and this woman was talking of a feather falling was a guardian angel giving a grieving man hope that his family member he lost was watching over him and another was talking about his pets soul energy had been transferred into something else so look for a sign. I've been quite cynical of late with all things religious (Easter weekend - afterlife it Jesus etc) and anything associated with it.


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