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Afterlife vs None... (SO question)

As a spin off of the "What do you think happens when you die" question I wanted to ask this...

Many see the idea of no afterlife as sad, yet those who believe in an afterlife tend to have a belief that there can be a negative one in store for some - be it hell or just a sucky life next time around.

So, my question is, How is the idea of NO afterlife any worse than a belief that someone could end up in Hell or with a horrid next life? OR How is the belief in an afterlife better than no afterlife if one runs the risk of not having a positive afterlife experience? Isn't it better not to have something than to have something bad?

**As most of you know I do believe in an afterlife, so I'm not trying to "bash" this belief. I am a firm believer in reincarnation, but with that belief comes the understanding that next time around could be much worse than this one - or much better...

Your thoughts?

Answer Question

Asked by SabrinaMBowen at 12:32 AM on Jul. 27, 2010 in Religious Debate

Level 40 (122,988 Credits)
Answers (9)
  • Hmmm...well, I suppose those that truly believe in it think they can live a life guaranteeing the positive afterlife. Personally, I believe in a heaven of sorts, but not of Hell, necessarily. I also think it has to do with a feeling of control. They feel that it helps them have some sort of control of their death, and what happens after.

    Answer by LovingSAHMommy at 12:34 AM on Jul. 27, 2010

  • I think the idea of a negative afterlife was established as an attempt to control human and societal behavior. I personally do not believe in an afterlife at all.

    Answer by Erin814 at 12:36 AM on Jul. 27, 2010

  • I agree with Erin.

    Answer by ashisamom at 12:38 AM on Jul. 27, 2010

  • i think the belief in some kind of afterlife seems better than no afterlife because as humans, we inherently want to continue living. the idea that there is Something after Death, somehow makes Death not so scary. it doesn't mean we welcome death sooner than later, just that the hope of having something on the other side, i think, is worth the 'risk' if you will, of the gamble.

    its getting late..maybe that didn't make any sense.

    Answer by dullscissors at 12:38 AM on Jul. 27, 2010

  • I tend to agree with you Erin. But I think that tends to apply only to those who believe in a spiritual afterlife. For those of us who believe in reincarnation, I think there is a general understanding that you don't know what you are gonna get... Your next physical life could go either way... Your parents could be abusive, you could end up being turned out, or even killed before you ever have the chance to take any control and make things better... In that way I don't think it's so much as the belief in a negative afterlife as much as it is the understanding that you don't know what you're gonna get, and there is always that chance... However, the belief in a negative spiritual afterlife - created to control or not - tends to be one people still believe is at least possible. I know my DH is convinced he's going to hell, which is why he is so terrified of death...

    Comment by SabrinaMBowen (original poster) at 12:40 AM on Jul. 27, 2010

  • I have had ideas of what it would be like even if reincarnation was possible, even when seeing such manerisms in my newborn nephew after the death of my grandfather. then I have come into the realization of if all could be a lie and what if the time on earth is so short and I am speculation on this and that, I have come to the decision that heaven and hell do exist, because I choose to go to heaven thru Jesus.

    Answer by cynthiaesquivel at 3:50 AM on Jul. 27, 2010

  • I don't get it either. Sometimes I think those that believe in an afterlife must view a belief in no afterlife as me sitting in a dark room by myself going "This sucks. I wish I was in heaven." or something. I mean...I won't have a consciousness to give a shit. They realize that, right? There are no value judgements to be made on the situation like sad, angry, missing out on something etc. I die and my consciousness goes with it. The candle is extinguished.


    Answer by deadheadjen at 9:21 AM on Jul. 27, 2010

  • I think that thinking of a positive afterlife tends to make people act a certain way in their present life with the idea that they will have a good one later. Thinking of a negative after life also tends to make people act a certain way in order to avoid a negative after life. Either way no one knows until that day comes. I choose to believe that there is a heaven and hell and I hope and pray that I have done what it takes to make it to heaven. If not, I will find out when I die either way I am still going to be the best person I can be here on earth and take nothing for granted because when it is over this life as I know it is over.

    Answer by LeeLeeCandleGrl at 8:09 PM on Jul. 27, 2010

  • I believe in the Heaven and Hell of the bible. You make a very valid point though. It always seemed sad to just believe in nothing but nothing is better than Hell. Even reincarnation is better than Hell.

    Answer by crazymom21 at 11:58 PM on Jul. 28, 2010

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