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    Thread: I just can't get my head around nonexistence after death

    1. #126
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      I think we are all the same "existence" RadiantZeal, no matter the label you give it. The same stuff that causes the curvature of space time, detectable as oscillations that can be measured (nothing could "move" through space time without oscillating, and so if the moving "stops" it is undetectable... or I wonder if it stops, it no longer is/exists. Hmm, pretty much brings me back to thinking you can never reach 0 K because that would inherently, I think, mean that existence has ceased to exist), nothing more and nothing less. We are.
      Last edited by snoop; 10-21-2014 at 06:40 PM.

    2. #127
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      When they talk about the "fire" in Hell, that means that fire of your guilt of all the mistakes you made. My personal (and churches) beliefs say that pretty much all of you will make it to heaven in some degree.

    3. #128
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      That is one of the great things about life. What would it be like to go to sleep and never wake up. After you think about that long enough, you will be met with another question. How did it feel to wake up without previously living.

      I was once asked that by a DC and to this day, I can't find the answer.

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      The idea of nonexistence after death is founded upon the superstition that we exist in the first place. To dispel anxiety about nonexistence, one must first come to grips with the tenuous, conditional, and largely illusory nature of what we are here and now. Identifying with the running commentary between your ears is a choice, and neither an adaptive nor a realistic one.
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      If you have a sense of caring for others, you will manifest a kind of inner strength in spite of your own difficulties and problems. With this strength, your own problems will seem less significant and bothersome to you. By going beyond your own problems and taking care of others, you gain inner strength, self-confidence, courage, and a greater sense of calm.Dalai Lama



    5. #130
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      [Shrugs] In death, technically you still exist--just not as a living organism. In that sense, being dead is not the same as never being born.

      At the end of the day, no living creature knows what lies beyond death--and they never will know until they truly die. Ergo, pondering and arguing about such matters is illogical.
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      Inevitably, they destroy themselves." ~Saïx (Kingdom Hearts II.5)

    6. #131
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      In death, technically you still exist--just not as a living organism.
      In which way do you mean that "you" exist then? Because that implyes that you know what or who you are.
      In that sense, being dead is not the same as never being born.
      True.
      At the end of the day, no living creature knows what lies beyond death--and they never will know until they truly die. Ergo, pondering and arguing about such matters is illogical.
      What you are saying is that any living creature will stil be aware after death then. If you think that poundering over death is illogical. Then you must think that poundering over any life-question is as illogical as poundering about death then.
      You are not your thoughts...

    7. #132
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      Quote Originally Posted by Taosaur View Post
      The idea of nonexistence after death is founded upon the superstition that we exist in the first place. To dispel anxiety about nonexistence, one must first come to grips with the tenuous, conditional, and largely illusory nature of what we are here and now. Identifying with the running commentary between your ears is a choice, and neither an adaptive nor a realistic one.
      So then you've chosen to ignore the running commentary between your ears (aka, thought)? Wow. It's amazing you've learned to read and write, much less managed to post on a website, where just being here is an admission that you are not ignoring that commentary; especially because "here" in this case is a dreaming website, where identifying with that running commentary could be seen as the core to successful LD'ing. This ignoring of thought doesn't seem like something that can be compartmentalized, either; it is all or nothing, right? Particularly when you deem existence a superstition, right?

      Identifying with that commentary between our ears, I think, is what makes us human, whether or not we choose to live in the here & now (where paying attention to that commentary is also required, BTW). Identity (meaning recognition of that commentary), in the end, is all we have. I think that to choose to ignore it leaves pretty much nothing, making for an empty and probably very boring subsistence-level life (being that anything beyond subsistence, like posting on websites or postulating on existence -- much less considering it at all, would be a choice that is apparently neither adaptive nor realistic). I for one will take the illusion, since it is much more interesting.

      Or did I totally misunderstand you?
      Last edited by Sageous; 01-17-2015 at 06:46 PM.

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      Not that I know what respond that Taosaur might come up with to your questions. But since I liked his post because that I agree with what he said. Then at least I will answear this one from what I've read out of your post.
      Or did I totally misunderstand you?
      I think so, yes.
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      You are not your thoughts...

    9. #134
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      Quote Originally Posted by Aristaeus View Post
      Ergo, pondering and arguing about such matters is illogical.
      Arguing? Yes. Pondering? Not quite, not in my opinion. How is it illogical to be curious about something and to legitimately try to come to grips with the fact that one day you are going to die? To think you know what will happen is illogical, but I see more harm in deciding not to think about something at all than to think about it too much. Being content is what stifles humanity's progress. If you didn't wonder, if nobody wondered, what kind of world would we live in today? This particular subject is one that is a primary motivator that drives a lot of your behaviors and thoughts. To ignore it seems like running away from your problems to me--it's unnatural in my case. I can't not wonder about death and come to some understanding about it. It's important just because it makes so many decisions for you. If you don't control any fear, drive to die, or negativity that comes from the thought of death, you are bound to make mistakes in your life you will surely regret.
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    10. #135
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      Quote Originally Posted by Sageous View Post
      Or did I totally misunderstand you?
      Insofar as you assumed "ignore" must be the only possible alternative to "identify with," yes, you misunderstood me. The only way to cease identifying with the so-called "stream of consciousness" and replace it with a stream of mindfulness is to pay close and genuine attention attention to it.

      Quote Originally Posted by Sageous View Post
      Identifying with that commentary between our ears, I think, is what makes us human, whether or not we choose to live in the here & now (where paying attention to that commentary is also required, BTW). Identity (meaning recognition of that commentary), in the end, is all we have.
      Isn't the whole topic of this thread that any identity based on thoughts is the one thing we most definitely do not have "in the end," though? The thing to understand and accept is that we don't have it here and now, either. Our identities dissolve and re-emerge on an ongoing basis every moment of every day, and what emerges each time is a fiction. It's an improvisation with the materials at hand, and can differ considerably from one moment to another. What remains present throughout is the ground of being, the fundamental causal substrate of our thoughts, awareness, form and identity. In the origin of our thoughts and the causes of our existence, we find ourselves linked to continuities long preceding our birth and sure to survive our death. We find ourselves linked to the entirety of existence, which on the one hand does not depend upon our incarnation (our being between a given birth and a given death), yet does depend upon every individual who ever existed for existence to present itself in the form we know.

      Do you choose to be the froth on a wave, thrust up and scattered again and again, or do you choose to be the ocean?
      If you have a sense of caring for others, you will manifest a kind of inner strength in spite of your own difficulties and problems. With this strength, your own problems will seem less significant and bothersome to you. By going beyond your own problems and taking care of others, you gain inner strength, self-confidence, courage, and a greater sense of calm.Dalai Lama



    11. #136
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      ^^ I think I'll go with DreamyBear and confirm that I didn't understand what you originally posted, Taosaur.

      From what I could unravel from your post above, I'm pretty sure that even if I had understood I would agree with pretty much nothing you said, and will likely suffer the comfortable illusion of identity idefinitely...perhaps even after death (who knows?). Given that, and given that I'm in no mood for another contest of fifty-cent words and two-dollar phrases right now, I will just ask myself once more why I post on threads down here and quietly walk away... I clearly do not belong here.

      Have a nice day tomorrow, Taosaur, whoever you might be at that point (though I am guessing you will still be you! )


    12. #137
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      Hmm, I am not ready to dismiss what Taosaur is saying, Sageous. Or not quite. Not sure whether this is what he is saying or whether I am spinning off on a different crazy tangent:

      What if our identifying with the thoughts between our ears is an illusion, in that our true identity is not the one we currently perceive as "I" but something much broader than that? What if this body dying actually has little effect on our awareness in the grand scheme of things on an eternal scale because my soul is not the soul of JoannaB and yours is not the soul of Sageous but rather we are both parts of a larger whole, let's call the whole God. And death might disrupt our identity with this ego but it would not mean that we become less or nothing but rather we become more and parts of everything? Is that possible?
      You may say I'm a dreamer.
      But I'm not the only one
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    13. #138
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      ^^ I wasn't dismissing, I was disagreeing, JoannaB; there is a difference.

      Sure, everything you are saying is just as possible as anything else. And if you think about it, then, in the context you are discussing, this brief moment on earth is the only time we have an identity, a moment of real individualism (or potential for it, anyway). If that's the case, shouldn't we treasure it while we can rather than assume our very existence here on earth is just an illusion of some sort?

      I feel enough like a cog in a great big wheel now, the prospect of being yet another cog in an even bigger wheel after death doesn't sound terribly pleasant to me... maybe it'll be better when I get there?

    14. #139
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      Spoiler for side story:

      I don't mind seeing my life as a tiny blip in a universe full of blips of varying sizes, really. I think that metaphor said it all:

      Quote Originally Posted by Ginsan
      You know I read a quote once, "In the face of eternity, a mountain is a transient as the clouds". It relates to what we are discussing.
      To me that is a perspective that offers so much truth. But so too does the fact that my blip is essentially my everything. I mean can imagine or guess at the rest, but that might imply that my perception is more accurate than it really is.

      How interesting time is in that way, perfectly constant and seemingly infinite, and yet truly only existing only as we perceive it. Death is similar perhaps, in that it is forever lurking yet apparent only to the extent that we acknowledge it.

      Spoiler for another tangent:

      Perhaps it is lazy of me, but I instead find it less troublesome to just respect death for what it is.

      And in the meantime prepare as best I can to fight it off with everything I've got if necessary, because you just never know!
      Last edited by acatalephobic; 01-18-2015 at 10:02 PM. Reason: too many word repeats
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      @Sageous: sorry to misunderstand your point.

      For me being part of a much greater whole does not equate necessarily with being a cog in the wheel. I have a a sense that we are One though many, branches on a vine, and yet each part matters infinitely. I cannot accept the notion that after death we are dissolved like drops into an ocean and lose our identity, but rather I think that our identity will no longer be separate, but much like an eye and an ear are both part of a body and yet each essential in its own way. I do not believe we will lose consciousness but rather that we will realize what we had been missing by thinking that we were just cogs in a wheel in this lifetime and yet thinking that we were separate. That's where my musings about life after death have taken me recently but of course they are just speculation which can be wrong.
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      But I'm not the only one
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    16. #141
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      Quote Originally Posted by DreamyBear View Post
      1). In which way do you mean that "you" exist then? Because that implyes that you know what or who you are.

      True.

      2). What you are saying is that any living creature will stil be aware after death then. If you think that poundering over death is illogical. Then you must think that poundering over any life-question is as illogical as poundering about death then.
      1). When living creatures die, at the very least their physical remains still exist--just in a completely inanimate state.


      2). Whoops, I really should have re-thought mine words. What I meant to say was, despite the many theories and beliefs concerning death, death will probably always be a mystery. Physically, it is known what happens after death: the biological functions of the deceased organism shut down permanently and eventually the deceased organism decomposes. But what happens to consciousness after death is ultimately unknown, and will likely always be unknown.

      Thinking about things like finding ways to cure diseases and mental illnesses, extend life, reduce pollution, explore space more easily, and finding other life in the universe, I can understand, because I believe those things are or will be possible as humanity and technology progresses. But finding out whether or not consciousness remains after death, I believe, is forever impossible. Therefore, I see absolutely no reason to think about whether or not consciousness remains after death.

      [Shrugs] That's mine opinion, at any rate.
      Be free from passion, unmoved by joy or grief,
      and submit without complaint to unavoidable necessity.
      That is the way of the Stoics.



      "Do you know what happens to those who lose their true purpose?
      Inevitably, they destroy themselves." ~Saïx (Kingdom Hearts II.5)

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      Quote Originally Posted by Aristaeus View Post
      Finding out whether or not consciousness remains after death, I believe, is forever impossible. Therefore, I see absolutely no reason to think about whether or not consciousness remains after death.
      I agree with the first statement. I disagree that it should lead to that second statement.


      Life is, if anything, a mystery. And if we are to appreciate life, we must appreciate it for what it is, an unsolvable paradox. All those questions we will never answer... They have some value. And some lead to practical applications.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Aristaeus View Post
      1). When living creatures die, at the very least their physical remains still exist--just in a completely inanimate state.


      2). Whoops, I really should have re-thought mine words. What I meant to say was, despite the many theories and beliefs concerning death, death will probably always be a mystery. Physically, it is known what happens after death: the biological functions of the deceased organism shut down permanently and eventually the deceased organism decomposes. But what happens to consciousness after death is ultimately unknown, and will likely always be unknown.

      Thinking about things like finding ways to cure diseases and mental illnesses, extend life, reduce pollution, explore space more easily, and finding other life in the universe, I can understand, because I believe those things are or will be possible as humanity and technology progresses. But finding out whether or not consciousness remains after death, I believe, is forever impossible. Therefore, I see absolutely no reason to think about whether or not consciousness remains after death.

      [Shrugs] That's mine opinion, at any rate.
      It seems pretty clear to me that the brain produces consciousness. When the brain goes, so does consciousness.
      The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended. - Frédéric Bastiat
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    19. #144
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      1). When living creatures die, at the very least their physical remains still exist--just in a completely inanimate state.
      1: Alright I assumed that, that would be your answear and I respect that. The thing as I see this though, is that what exist after death is not you in any form. Since what once was the "you" is only a lifeless body after death. So we cant really say that "you" will exist in another physical/organic form as the "you" after the "you" passes away. There will only be matter left. But no longer any "you" in the matter that once contained "you".

      2). Whoops, I really should have re-thought mine words. What I meant to say was, despite the many theories and beliefs concerning death, death will probably always be a mystery. Physically, it is known what happens after death: the biological functions of the deceased organism shut down permanently and eventually the deceased organism decomposes. But what happens to consciousness after death is ultimately unknown, and will likely always be unknown.

      Thinking about things like finding ways to cure diseases and mental illnesses, extend life, reduce pollution, explore space more easily, and finding other life in the universe, I can understand, because I believe those things are or will be possible as humanity and technology progresses. But finding out whether or not consciousness remains after death, I believe, is forever impossible. Therefore, I see absolutely no reason to think about whether or not consciousness remains after death.
      2. Ah, okey. We tend to believe in many things, but we rarely question those beliefs enough to follow them to the end. And that is also where our understanding ends. There cant be any answers if there is no questions.

      [Shrugs] That's mine opinion, at any rate.
      Even if you would recognize your opinions as false?
      You are not your thoughts...

    20. #145
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      Quote Originally Posted by DreamyBear View Post
      Even if you would recognize your opinions as false?
      Even if. Personally, I like to think there is always the possibility mine hypotheses on any subject are incorrect.
      JoannaB and DreamyBear like this.
      Be free from passion, unmoved by joy or grief,
      and submit without complaint to unavoidable necessity.
      That is the way of the Stoics.



      "Do you know what happens to those who lose their true purpose?
      Inevitably, they destroy themselves." ~Saïx (Kingdom Hearts II.5)

    21. #146
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      Quote Originally Posted by Sageous View Post
      From what I could unravel from your post above, I'm pretty sure that even if I had understood I would agree with pretty much nothing you said, and will likely suffer the comfortable illusion of identity idefinitely...perhaps even after death (who knows?).
      It's not a comfortable illusion. It's the source of all discomfort, suffering and anxiety in your existence. Thinking about letting go of it is frightening and painful, but actually letting go of it just means relaxing into what and where you really are--the entirety of what and where you are, even if the explicitly "you" portion becomes so vanishingly small as to, in effect, not exist.

      I hope none of the above words exceeded your $0.49 budget. I spent a lot of my youth in the library, where words are free.
      If you have a sense of caring for others, you will manifest a kind of inner strength in spite of your own difficulties and problems. With this strength, your own problems will seem less significant and bothersome to you. By going beyond your own problems and taking care of others, you gain inner strength, self-confidence, courage, and a greater sense of calm.Dalai Lama



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      Quote Originally Posted by Taosaur View Post
      It's not a comfortable illusion. It's the source of all discomfort, suffering and anxiety in your existence. Thinking about letting go of it is frightening and painful, but actually letting go of it just means relaxing into what and where you really are--the entirety of what and where you are, even if the explicitly "you" portion becomes so vanishingly small as to, in effect, not exist.
      I've been wondering, is it truly possible to detach yourself from your identity? It seems possible in theory, but I feel like it wouldn't be possible in practice. Because as much as you can say, I am not a person... That's what you are. You still have to wake up every day and face the obstacles. I do like to not be me, once in a while but it only works when I'm not in the middle of something super important.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Taosaur View Post
      It's not a comfortable illusion. It's the source of all discomfort, suffering and anxiety in your existence.
      No, it isn't. Not for me, anyway, and it is certainly not the "source of all discomfort, etc" in my existence (seriously?). If it is for you, that's fine, but please don't assume that the things that bother you necessarily bother everyone else

      Thinking about letting go of it is frightening and painful, but actually letting go of it just means relaxing into what and where you really are--the entirety of what and where you are, even if the explicitly "you" portion becomes so vanishingly small as to, in effect, not exist.
      No it isn't frightening and painful; not for me, anyway. And yes, I did have my period of thinking about -- and attempting -- abandoning ego and identity, and I don't remember during those years ever being frightened or in any kind of pain... an occasional sense of sillyness, absurdity, and seriously wasted time, maybe, but never fear or pain.

      Also, if you have succeeded in doing what you describe, why are you posting on a website? Isn't that a function of identity?

      You are not the first to think or try these things, Taosaur; please don't assume that what happened to you, and what worked for you, applies to everyone. It does not.

      I hope none of the above words exceeded your $0.49 budget. I spent a lot of my youth in the library, where words are free.
      Thank you for keeping the talk cheap; it is much easier to understand that way!

      This chat is heading in a direction in which I have no interest in heading; I'm out.
      Last edited by Sageous; 01-24-2015 at 11:37 PM.

    24. #149
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      I haven't read everyone's responses, only the OP's, but I've gotten a good chuckle at some of the responses.

      All I've got to say is that you guys are going to be surprised when you finally die. There's definitely something after this life. No need to waste time proving it because you will get your proof one day.
      Not sure if I am looking forward to the "You incompetent fool, there is no afterlife and you are stupid" reply that I know I am going to get, but its whatever. I am tired however, of humans thinking that they know everything there is to know about our existence. How arrogant could you be? To be such complicated and intricate organisms, yet doubt anything beyond us? Really?

      Scientists haven't even found out where consciousness originates from and people are already coming to conclusions. You guys are alot more intelligent than that. Don't automatically dismiss something just because it bothers you to think about it.

      Have a goodnight everyone.

      "If we doubted our fears instead of doubting our dreams, imagine how much in life we'd accomplish." ~Joel Brown
      "Your background and circumstances may have influenced who you are, but you are responsible for who you become." ~Darren Hardy


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    25. #150
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      If I understand, things are just as they are.
      If I don't understand, things are just as they are.

      I guess that makes me an Isist?

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