Transcendence: Afterlife

Is death the ultimate existential question? If so, I submit a close second asks, “Is there a continuation of a person when the physical body dies?” Ancient Egyptian’s were fascinated about death and the Afterlife. In certain  ways they concentrated more on the Afterlife than this life. The Egyptian Book of the Dead contains instructions for the dead, prayers, and magical spells. Modern humans have a great fear of death, but at the same time we are fascinated by death and Afterlife. Is there life after death? Is there life after life?  Is there such a thing as a revenant return? Death is a transition and a transformation, for surely our bodies are transported to another condition after we die. To see and touch a body that has died is to know a transition has taken place and the body has been transformed. Anderson views the, “dying experience itself, as the last of life’s great transitions.”(2003) Can a transition that leads to a transformation then transcend? Some believe we die and we are no more. Period! When Albert Einstein was asked if he believed in an Afterlife he said, “No. One life is enough for me.” He indicated that, “there is only one true immortality, on a cosmic scale, and that is the immortality of the cosmos itself.” Piggybacking on Einstein’s quote, I maintain that those worried about their immortality, in this sense and this sense alone, the continuation of our atoms in the Cosmos is the only manner in which are mortal remains will be immortal.

However, Raymond Moody argued that, “there is life after death.” (1975) John Hick suggested that it is possible to have an “eschatological verification” of life after death, however catch-22, it can only take place after death. (1983) That is, surely only when we die can we find out if there is life after death. The concept of eschatological verification (i. e. final events, death, and end of the world) makes a lot of sense to me. Really, only dying can verify an Afterlife!  Socrates said in the Apology that death is either: 1.) a state of nothingness and a condition of endless sleep, or 2.) a state where the soul migrates to a different world. Famous neurologist Oliver Sachs has his own view on an Afterlife where he says, “I have no belief in (or desire for) any post-mortem existence, other than in the memories of friends, and the hope that some of my books may still ‘speak’ to people after my death.” (2014)



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