Accepting an afterlife as fact without belief in "God"

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posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 01:25 PM
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I was just watching Stephen Colbert interviewing Neil DeGrasse Tyson....

and it has brought to the front of my mind - (well, it's always at the front of my mind lately): Can't we believe in an afterlife without believing in God? I think the answer is YES.

I think NDEs have revealed amply that there is an afterlife, whether one is an adherent of a religion or not. They have established that no one religion (or any) is necessary to experience things outside our "waking world". Dreams and NDEs/OBEs seem to be universal phenomena - even those with no religion have been experientially willing to admit, after a NDE, that they experienced a 'beyond.'

So - do we really need to think "God" (the concept of God) has anything to do with it??

I do believe there is an afterlife. I do not feel convinced that a "God" has anything to do with it.

Can we have both as reasonable possibilities? I think so.

Probably my shortest OP ever
, but I want to know what ATS thinks. Looking forward to what you all have to say, if anything.




posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 01:29 PM
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reply to post by wildtimes
 


Hmmmm what if instead God there is the Force?



posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 01:31 PM
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if there is an afterlife, i just hope it doesn't come with an insufferable indifference like all other ideas of afterlife suggest. I'd prefer nothingness if my consciousness was subject to judgment alone.



posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 01:31 PM
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reply to post by wildtimes
 


Hi Wildtimes!

Gonna watch the interview, then come back to comment!

Good topic,





posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 01:32 PM
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reply to post by starwarsisreal
 


I think 'The Force' is, as portrayed in the Star Wars series, a sort of reworking of the thoughts of man since forever: that there is SOMETHING we can harness....(not all of us, but some of us) that is perplexing.

I understand the Jedi Religion - some years ago I realized that much of sci-fi uses the same theme.
(Even The Wizard of Oz, if you look at it from a certain pov).
edit on 2/7/14 by wildtimes because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 01:35 PM
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reply to post by Jarring
 



if there is an afterlife, i just hope it doesn't come with an insufferable indifference like all other ideas of afterlife suggest.


Insufferable indifference, eh...? I think the human race is plagued by it while we are here (on Earth, in our flesh/bone 'vehicles)....
I'm not sure why (but I think karma has something to do with it - and open-ended 'lessons' to be learned).

Are you familiar with much of the documented NDEs?



posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 01:37 PM
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reply to post by windword
 

Thanks for linking the vid, wind! Lazy of me, I guess.


Stephen is a genius, in my opinion.
So is Neil. Very interesting.



posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 01:38 PM
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Great topic. Other than the NDE's and such there are other methods that other claim to let you touch beyond life. Deep yoga, sensory deprivation tank, Shamanic tools(don't believe we can delve into the shaman tools much on here). Isn't there the possibility of a god as well? Doesn't have to the God of any such religion. Maybe consciousness can not be destroyed?



posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 01:41 PM
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reply to post by turboneon
 


Excellent points.

Yes, I was just going to post that the Buddhists manage to balance the two ideas....
and it just makes a lot of sense to me. Way more sense than 'materialist nihilism' - that we just cease - or 'only those who claim Jesus' have an afterlife - which I think is absurd.

edit on 2/7/14 by wildtimes because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 01:41 PM
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wildtimes
reply to post by Jarring
 



if there is an afterlife, i just hope it doesn't come with an insufferable indifference like all other ideas of afterlife suggest.


Insufferable indifference, eh...? I think the human race is plagued by it while we are here (on Earth, in our flesh/bone 'vehicles)....
I'm not sure why (but I think karma has something to do with it - and open-ended 'lessons' to be learned).

Are you familiar with much of the documented NDEs?


i've heard about some various cases.

btw, whether or not we ever meet whatever commands all that be in this world or the next, there's still going to be that something that holds it all in place.

we don't have to believe in God to exist here, we shouldn't have to believe in God to exist afterwards. I'm not implying he exists, I'm just trying to prove a point.

There's going to be something that governs regardless of our belief.



posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 01:46 PM
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reply to post by Jarring
 



we don't have to believe in God to exist here, we shouldn't have to believe in God to exist afterwards. I'm not implying he exists, I'm just trying to prove a point.

There's going to be something that governs regardless of our belief.

Very astute. I agree....

but - what is it?

Before I found this vid to watch, I was watching Bill Moyers interviewing Tyson - and he talks about "dark matter" and "dark energy" (which he readily admits are poorly 'named' and totally mysterious at this point - 'place holders' until we know) as forces that could seem to be the 'universal controller.'



posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 01:54 PM
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wildtimes
reply to post by Jarring
 



we don't have to believe in God to exist here, we shouldn't have to believe in God to exist afterwards. I'm not implying he exists, I'm just trying to prove a point.

There's going to be something that governs regardless of our belief.

Very astute. I agree....

but - what is it?

Before I found this vid to watch, I was watching Bill Moyers interviewing Tyson - and he talks about "dark matter" and "dark energy" (which he readily admits are poorly 'named' and totally mysterious at this point - 'place holders' until we know) as forces that could seem to be the 'universal controller.'


For some reason, I feel inclined to believe that is by free will that we live, and by free will--purpose for whatever matter was meant to serve.



posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 01:56 PM
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reply to post by wildtimes
 


As I commented on another thread discussing "Afterlife", I don't see it.

If there is some spooky other place, and our existence incarnate is either recreation, vacation, school, or whatever away from this other spooky after-life place/existence, then, such a place is full of monsters and sick people to want to come and exist incarnate as all the monsters, victims, poor, abused, diseased, slaves, disabled, frightened, and other classifications of living the lowest common denominators representing a large majority of humanity must endure as their lot in life.

It's pretty sick to volunteer for such degradations and horrors that are the daily lives of many which don't often get much media attention in polite western society.

Do a Live Leaks search for "Rapists Burned" for some fairly graphic video of rapists being beaten and burned alive by a mob in Brazil.
Consider after viewing such, if it can be stomached that this kind of existence and behavior was quite widely more common for much of mankinds existence up until relatively recently, and even, as exampled, still goes on.

If people are going to some spooky spirit existence, just to come back and live these kinds of lives, it's pretty disgusting and irrational.


edit on 2/7/2014 by AliceBleachWhite because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 01:58 PM
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science commands indifference, but it is not science's fault, it is ours for believing that scientific accuracy is enough reason for anything to exist.

judgment commands indifference as well, but there's nothing we can do about that.
edit on 01/24/14 by Jarring because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 02:13 PM
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reply to post by AliceBleachWhite
 



It's pretty sick to volunteer for such degradations and horrors that are the daily lives of many which don't often get much media attention in polite western society.

Well, I'd say that depends on what 'transpired' with an entity in previous 'incarnations.'

I'm quite well aware (and horrified) by the unspeakably awful conditions that some are born into - one of my main themes, in fact, is that we need to make sure every living human being is clothed, fed, sheltered, acknowledged, provided with clean water and medicine, and given the advantages of 'modern technology'....
ETA:
SO THAT NO MATTER WHERE WE'RE BORN NEXT, we aren't suffering unspeakable horrors.
/edit

In the Hindu culture - they see the 'crippled' and 'indigent' as paying off some karmic debt.

So - what if it is a choice based on 'self-imposed sentencing'?


Do a Live Leaks search for "Rapists Burned" for some fairly graphic video of rapists being beaten and burned alive by a mob in Brazil.
Consider after viewing such, if it can be stomached that this kind of existence and behavior was quite widely more common for much of mankinds existence up until relatively recently, and even, as exampled, still goes on.

Yes, it does.
So what exactly is going on here???

Quite disturbing, whatever it is.


If people are going to some spooky spirit existence, just to come back and live these kinds of lives, it's pretty disgusting and irrational.

"Irrational" according to what standard(s)?

(I don't think the afterlife has to be thought of as 'spooky' - but, okay
)
edit on 2/7/14 by wildtimes because: (no reason given)
edit on 2/7/14 by wildtimes because: transpired with, not 'to'



posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 02:14 PM
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I think you are absolutely right, OP. There is PLENTY of evidence for an afterlife and none of it really depends on a belief in god, Jesus, or any religion whatsoever. That's human window dressing put on after the fact. That begs the question of what, exactly, is going on, of course. So far, we humans, having no absolute knowledge, have chosen to make stuff up to fill the gap. I think this is exacerbated by the apparent fact that the after life is quite malleable by thought, i.e.: You tend to see what you believe, so if you believe in Jesus, that's who you will see. Same with the 72 virgins. Those sorts of things get reported back once in awhile, this validating the beliefs of people who are predisposed to their own religious truths.

You may be interested in a series of books by Chris Carter including Science and the Near-death Experience, Science and Psychis Phenomenon; the fall of the house of skeptics, and Science and the After-life Experience, which deal with the issue from a non-religious perspective.



posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 02:16 PM
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reply to post by Jarring
 



it is ours for believing that scientific accuracy is enough reason for anything to exist.


What??
I certainly don't think that 'scientific accuracy' is a 'reason' for anything to exist. Nor is it a 'cause' or 'mission' regarding our existence. I'm not at all sure of what the reason we exist is, but I think scientific inquiry is important - we are born curious, open-minded, and enthusiastic....

what's that all about?



posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 02:17 PM
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reply to post by schuyler
 


Heya, Schuyler!!!

Welcome to the thread!!

As a matter of fact, I've read all three of Carter's books - just recently. And have pimped them on the boards before. www.abovetopsecret.com...
So happy that we seem to be finding common ground after all.


Yes - EVERYONE - check out these books!!!

edit on 2/7/14 by wildtimes because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 02:19 PM
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Of course belief in an afterlife can come without belief in a creator. Buddhists are a perfect example, they believe in reincarnation but do not hold any belief in a creator deity.

I personally believe in reincarnation, everything works in cycles, even life/death. After we die we will forever be reincarnated over and over again back into this universe. In fact, we're already in the "afterlife" because we have all been reincarnated. It's a process that cannot be avoided in my opinion.

As far as OBE's/NDE's, I don't think they're proof of an afterlife per se because I believe they are just chemical reactions in the brain brought on by trauma in order to cope with said trauma. Just as dreams are chemical reactions in the brain so are OBE's and NDE's in my opinion, they are just more vivid "lucid" dream states in a sense.

Everyone who has experienced either of those two things has come back to recount them so there's really no reason to believe they're an experience of the afterlife in my opinion. Once you're in the afterlife you don't come back, at least that's my reasoning on the subject. I could be wrong though.

S&F



posted on Feb, 7 2014 @ 02:20 PM
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wildtimes
I was just watching Stephen Colbert interviewing Neil DeGrasse Tyson....

and it has brought to the front of my mind - (well, it's always at the front of my mind lately): Can't we believe in an afterlife without believing in God? I think the answer is YES.

I think NDEs have revealed amply that there is an afterlife, whether one is an adherent of a religion or not. They have established that no one religion (or any) is necessary to experience things outside our "waking world". Dreams and NDEs/OBEs seem to be universal phenomena - even those with no religion have been experientially willing to admit, after a NDE, that they experienced a 'beyond.'

So - do we really need to think "God" (the concept of God) has anything to do with it??

I do believe there is an afterlife. I do not feel convinced that a "God" has anything to do with it.

Can we have both as reasonable possibilities? I think so.

Probably my shortest OP ever
, but I want to know what ATS thinks. Looking forward to what you all have to say, if anything.


Atheism is the rejection of a belief in deities. Deities are any supernatural beings that may or may not be thought of as divine or sacred. Unless you believe the afterlife is empty and devoid of any other beings, a belief in it would require some reconciliation on behalf of the atheist. With the definitions of "atheism" and "deity", it's very difficult to say that a believer in anything "paranormal" can be an atheist.

Most atheists who believe in the afterlife or understand what's on the other sides usually stop calling themselves "atheist" and move to the broader and more flexible term of "agnostic". I meet many "atheists" who I wouldn't call atheists but I don't usually tell them that to their face. Labels are very important to some people and are less effective without them.





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