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How Does... come to the conclusion that FEAR of death because of a potential afterlife spent in the flames of despair, calls for active pursuit of religion to quell that fear? When searching for religion, or practicing religion, is the legitimacy of the claim to an afterlife ever questioned, or is it assumed that as humans we all come equipped with a spiritual soul?

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Asked by ObbyDobbie at 4:51 PM on Dec. 15, 2009 in Religion & Beliefs

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Answers (9)
  • Oh thats a great point !!

    I believe that this life is temporary and there is a better option right up the street. No human, no medicine, plastic surgery, or amount of exercise can save me from death. God is my only hope.

    Answer by 3gigglemonsters at 5:05 PM on Dec. 15, 2009

  • Personally, I don't believe in an afterlife. But I believe if there IS such a thing, you will be judged on your actions while alive, not on whether or not you belong to a particular religion. Honestly, some of the most hateful, mean-spirited human beings I've met have claimed to be religious... I also have a hard time believing that for example, somebody like Ghandi would go to hell (because he's not Christian), while Hitler (being Christian) would go to heaven. I mean, really?

    Answer by Anouck at 5:07 PM on Dec. 15, 2009

  • i have belief in the after life. I love God, I fear his punishment and i pray for his mercy.

    Answer by Aasiyah at 5:24 PM on Dec. 15, 2009

  • Before I was a Christian I was never afraid of hell, because I thought that only really bad people went there (like Hitler and all). I didn't realize that I was a sinner at all. And I should add that I was practicing HUGE sins at the time (but I justified it, LOL).

    Anyways, I came to a faith in God, not out of a fear of hell, but out of love for God. It is His goodness that draws us to Him.

    But I do believe that it is important to question the legitimacy of the claim of an afterlife. I believe we all have spiritual souls and I believe in heaven and hell.

    Do I want to go to hell? no. But is that fear what drew me to Jesus? nope.

    Answer by Cinnamon-mom at 5:33 PM on Dec. 15, 2009

  • In my quest to understand my family, I have a lot of questions left unanswered- it's good to see honest responses, which helps be put together the bigger picture, no matter how I feel about it.

    Answer by ObbyDobbie at 5:36 PM on Dec. 15, 2009

  • Anouk, who told you that Hitler is in heaven? I have never heard anyone imply that!

    I have heard some people call Hitler a Christian, but the Bible says that you can tell a Christian by their fruit. And the fruit of the Spirit is love. Hitler was a hatefull murderer. He was trying to design a master race, by killing a group of people that God loves. This is based in the eugenics movement, and social darwinism. This is does not describe a Christian.


    Answer by Cinnamon-mom at 5:50 PM on Dec. 15, 2009

  • Excellent question!!
    Yes, I think it's understood, at least in the Abrahamic traditions, that we come equipped with a spiritual soul and that there is some type of "awareness" (for lack of a better term) after death. So the legitimacy of that claim does often go unquestioned.

    Now, I can only speak for myself, but fear of death is not why I deepened my spiritual search. It was trying to expand my life, and bring more meaning to the act of living, that led me on my path.

    I don't know if that makes sense . . .

    Answer by Redteux at 6:17 PM on Dec. 15, 2009

  • Cinnamon-mom, that was actually a DIRECT answer (after a lot of hemming and hawing) I got on a journal I posted with that specific question.... I straight up asked "If you believe only Christians go to heaven, does that mean Ghandi goes to hell, and Hitler (assuming he repented at the end) goes to heaven". And yes, some of those who responded didn't WANT to admit that's what they thought, but eventually did.

    And leaving Hitler aside, how would you answer the Ghandi question? Because personally, I believe Ghandi was one of the most beautiful and pure souls ever to have graced this earth. Do you believe he wouldn't go to heaven, purely because he didn't believe in your God?

    Answer by Anouck at 6:21 PM on Dec. 15, 2009

  • Oh, so they said that he could have gone to heaven if he had accepted Christ, not that he was in heaven? Okay, cuz I was like "What?" LOL.

    Anyways, about Ghandi, yes he was a peace loving man. Some consider him one of the best people who ever lived. If Ghandi believed in Jesus, he went to heaven. No one knows for sure what went on in his brain before he passed so he could be in heaven. God can reveal Himself to anyone at anytime. So no one can say that he is in hell.

    But on another note, Ghandi read the Bible and he knew the teachings of Jesus. So if he didn't believe in Jesus, it was becasue he flat out rejected Jesus. We cannot work our way into heaven with our good deeds and wise sayings. Ghandi said some great things, but he rejected Jesus. He said no thank you, to the free gift of salvation. He said no, to the offer of heaven.

    . . . or maybe he said yes, and we just don't know it yet.

    Answer by Cinnamon-mom at 6:47 PM on Dec. 15, 2009

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