My thoughts on the afterlife culled from my imagination. Peter Pan says, in his book by J.M. Barrie, “To die will be an awfully big adventure.” I agree; it’s a mystery we’ll never solve while we are alive. Some people believe their religion, others trust in karma, while many refuse to give it any thought at all.
I’ve debated it in my head, but have come to no conclusions. In life, logic serves me well, but afterlife is a matter of blind faith and dumb luck. I think there’s a bigger picture that we can’t see, I hope we’re here for a reason, and trust everyone gets what they deserve in the afterlife.
Here are my first 7 – plausible to the ridiculous – thoughts on afterlife – 7 more to follow – let me know what your thoughts are…I claim no authority on the subject…
A most boring and annoying option – that we live, strive, do our best – or not – and, when our body finally packs up on us, then we, our mind, body, and soul, just ceases to be. What a waste! And what would be the point?
The only way I can think of that afterlife being logical would be if we never mattered at all – that our perceived existences were actually part of board game, that we were all pawns, to be played with, by the Gods on Mount Olympus, and when our role has ended, that’s it. Our fate is out of our hands and nothing we do matters. Not my favorite choice.
13. Traditional Hell
This would be your classic Dante hell, all fire, torture and never-ending pain, as depicted in classic literature and art. Religions have bet their churches on this being a viable option – what parent/teacher/priest has not threatened with – ‘If you behave like that again, you’ll go to hell! But if you’re good, give lots of money to our religion, I am sure our God will accept you into Heaven, otherwise, you may become the Devil’s pet to be abused and suffer for all eternity! Not a fun afterlife at all.
12. Personal Hell
This would be much more effective way of punishment. If you’ve done more bad than good over a lifetime, either by one evil act or many awful small ones, you come here. Once deemed bad, you’re subjected to your own personal hell for an eternity. That may be what you’re most scared of – snakes, flying, being alone, drowning – or be forced to re-live your worst day/moments/choices.
True hell would be stuck in an endless loop of pain, fear and loss. To cover your bets – do more good than bad…
11. In Limbo
This is the in-between, the place where you go to linger and suffer – in temporary anguish – the religious equivalent of a time out – the whole – ‘Go in that corner, think about what you’ve done, and don’t you dare leave until you’re ready to say you’re sorry.’ Most religions support some form of it…
The human version would be – stranded at a foreign airport, with no food, no money, your phone’s out of juice, and you find yourself wedged between a group of wilderness survivalists, who badly need a bath, and squealing teenagers posting to Twitter about the delay. You know you’ll be free at some point, but all you can do is dream of pizza/wine, a hot shower, and a cozy bed!
Maybe one can choose not to go into the light but pick an afterlife on Earth; many claim to have seen ghosts, and haunted buildings are popular tourist destination. There’ve been many reported sightings in Hollywood, including Marilyn Monroe and Montgomery Cliff; they’ve been spotted hanging out at the Roosevelt Hotel on Hollywood Boulevard.
A theory is: People, who die unexpectedly, stay because they don’t realize they’re dead or want to re-live their greatest/happiest moments. While others are too scared to move on or stay to guard/guide their loved ones still living. That old show, Ghost Whisperer, depicted many reasons why people might choose to linger…
For me, that’s the Doctor Who regeneration option, you wake up in a different body, never knowing what new traits/features you’ll have – the only difference from the Doctor – you can’t remember anything that happened before – there is no collective memory of your past lives – new body = new go-around!
Many religions support this theory; it makes sense – you’re born with certain talents with goals to accomplish – then live your life. If you make the best of what you’ve got, learn your lessons, you move on to conquer another set of problems, in another life-time – always evolving as a soul.
If you make bad choices, you keep being re-born, given same tests, until you get it right.
This one feels like school – once you pass, you move on – keep learning, failing, and striving, onwards and upwards, until you graduate, or in spiritual terms, reach Enlightenment/Nirvana/Heaven.
Very logical solution. Being judged on the equivalent of one exam isn’t right; if you’re good, you get the equivalent of a Ph D after doing one year at nursery school, and, if bad, expelled to Hell, for all eternity. Not fair, indeed!
8. A Do-Over
A variation on the reincarnation theme, but with a twist; this one was inspired by a Doctor Who episode, where Rose, gets a chance to live her life in an alternate reality and grow old with an alternate version of the Doctor – the man she’s always loved.
What if you did ‘fail’ one lifetime – made wrong choices, time and again, really messed up, or perhaps, killed yourself – what if – you could have a do-over in another plane – an alternate reality.
You’re born the same person, in the same circumstances, with the same personality, same challenges, but get the chance to be better/live the life you wanted but didn’t have – you’re given the chance to explore, and conquer, that road not traveled.
I love the idea of an afterlife that gives the chance for redemption, to salvage lost dreams, and reach for the stars you missed the first time around…
So – that’s the first 7 – another 7 will follow later….what do you think happens to us in the afterlife?
In the meantime, I wanted to mention a new/old friend of mine – Erin Lindsay – this is a link to her website – we met in June, while photographing at Joshua Tree, and became instant best pals…she’s a most talented photographer – check her out…I even get a wee mention in her blog!