• RepThatMerch22
    55
    Nobody knows the answer to this question, but I think that the most logical answer is that it feels just like before you were born. "You" do not exist, in the sense that there is no consciousness to experience. After death, consciousness ceases.

    I know it is a dry and boring explanation, but what do you all think?
  • ArguingWAristotleTiff
    3.7k
    That is exactly how my Mom who transitioned over many, many souls working at Hospice for 15 years. People would ask what it feels like after you die? Mom would answer that she thinks that after we cease living, we feel the same as we did before we were born. I think there is a degree of comfort in her answer but I also believe that coming from the scientific mind, she was also factoring in the science of the body as it ceases to live.
  • RepThatMerch22
    55
    I think it is also the most logical view.

    It would be totally arbitrary to say that there is an afterlife, and that you become an elephant or a tiger (I only say this as it is a commonly invoked example).

    It would be weird to say that you go to Heaven or Hell, or some other variation of either.

    There is totally no evidence for it.

    It's impossible to imagine what it was like before you were born, just as it's impossible to imagine what it's like after you die.
  • RepThatMerch22
    55
    For a lot of people, this is really unsatisfying, but we shouldn't be bothered about whether the truth is comforting or not. I think the truth is the truth, and one of the goals of philosophy should be to ascertain truth. At the very least, any academic or intellectual discipline ought at its core to have truth as one of its values.
  • ArguingWAristotleTiff
    3.7k
    I think it is also the most logical view.

    It would be totally arbitrary to say that there is an afterlife, and that you become an elephant or a tiger (I only say this as it is a commonly invoked example).
    RepThatMerch22

    While it is the most logical view and it keeps it simple for most to embrace, she also supported any idea of afterlife they might entertain, as she talked with the family and the patient during the 11th hour of their lives. If they believed in Christ, she followed their beliefs, if they believed in Allah she understood their traditions but when it came to asking her about what her feelings were, she was open about it and let them take what they wanted from it and they were able to leave the rest. Ceasing to live is between two people, two entities and that is the person and whatever they believe to be their maker and it is only when they are ready that life ceases to exist.
  • RepThatMerch22
    55
    Of course, I agree that we should behave in socially acceptable ways. If I have friends who are religious and I am at the dinnertable with them, I would respect their beliefs. I would not assert my own beliefs, and I would be open to listening to them (or even pretending to accept some of their views, if they are viewed as at least reasonable or moderate).
  • ArguingWAristotleTiff
    3.7k
    Welcome to The Philosophy Forum! I look forward to reading more of you on the threads~ Excellent response
  • Bitter Crank
    8.6k
    It would be weird to say that you go to Heaven or Hell, or some other variation of either.RepThatMerch22

    Of course, it wouldn't be weird to say that IF you grew up believing that one went to heaven or hell after one died.

    I think the truth is the truthRepThatMerch22

    The truth is the truth if we can determine what the truth is. 2 + 2 = 4 is true. It's provable. That there is no existence of any kind after we die is simply not provable -- just as the assertion that there IS existence after death is not provable. Either one could be true or false, but we have no way of proving it. We can't even get an inkling of what happens after we die. Zero clues.

    I agree with you that "existence after death" is the same as "existence before birth" but I have no evidence that such is the case, therefore I can not say that there is any truth in the claim.
  • RepThatMerch22
    55
    That there is no existence of any kind after we die is simply not provable -- just as the assertion that there IS existence after death is not provable. Either one could be true or false, but we have no way of proving it. We can't even get an inkling of what happens after we die. Zero clues.

    I agree with you that "existence after death" is the same as "existence before birth" but I have no evidence that such is the case, therefore I can not say that there is any truth in the claim.
    Bitter Crank

    I said it was a logical view to have. I never said you could prove it.
  • Bitter Crank
    8.6k
    Isn't logic something provable?
  • TheMadFool
    4.9k
    Nobody knows the answer to this question, but I think that the most logical answer is that it feels just like before you were born. "You" do not exist, in the sense that there is no consciousness to experience. After death, consciousness ceases.

    I know it is a dry and boring explanation, but what do you all think?
    RepThatMerch22

    I can relate to this question so well. Here's what I think...

    In life we're endowed with senses (sight, audio, smell, touch and taste) and we, perhaps through habit, think life = having these senses on and actively engaging the world around you.

    However, the soul could be something that lacked these senses and had/has an altogether, well, different experience of reality (sans our senses).

    Imagine person A (born blind) and person B (became blind at 20). Vision makes sense to B but not to A. A never experienced the sense of sight and yet A is alive - the soul, I think, is something like person A.

    It could all be bullshit of course.
  • schopenhauer1
    3.8k
    I agree with you that "existence after death" is the same as "existence before birth" but I have no evidence that such is the case, therefore I can not say that there is any truth in the claim.Bitter Crank

    If one can prove that individual egos are attached to bodies and brains, and these no longer function, then one can prove that individual egos cease to exist with the loss of the function.

    If one can prove that what makes you "you" is your individual ego that functions only as a derivative of a brain and body, then "you" cease to exist when the body and brain cease to function.
  • Cavacava
    2.4k


    The problem is that the facts of the matter are not known, so it is can not be objectively, logically true.
  • antinatalautist
    32
    What was I before I was born?
  • WISDOMfromPO-MO
    753

    Before a human is born, he/she is developing, growing, etc.

    If the experience after death is like the experience before birth, is a dead human developing, growing, etc.?
  • sime
    479
    Nobody knows the answer to this question, but I think that the most logical answer is that it feels just like before you were born. "You" do not exist, in the sense that there is no consciousness to experience. After death, consciousness ceases.RepThatMerch22

    But we don't experience consciousness, we experience the world, and all of our ordinary non-philosophical questioning are empirical and are said in response to, and only concerned with, predicting and relating to the world we experience.

    So you should first ask whether supposedly 'transcendental' questions concerning an "after life" or lack of, are really different from ordinary non-transcendental questions concerning the world we live in, in spite of the apparent difference of these questions on the surface.

    i.e. Are after-life questions merely ordinary questions about the world we live in, but in disguise?

    Indeed, when we ask questions about an after-life we actively conceive of possible "after-lives" in our imagination, which as a consequence become physically realisable outcomes - including the so called "absence of after-life" possibility, where we kid ourselves into thinking that we have visualised so-called 'nothingness'. In all instances, we are imagining something that could be experienced during our actual lives here on earth, in space, or in virtual reality.
  • Rich
    3.2k
    I imagine life and death cycles are similar sleep and awake cycles. Interestingly Hamlet alludes to this analogy in his famous soliloquy.
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