Posted by Exodus 22:19 on September 02, 2001 at 06:47:52:
In Reply to: Re: Death and Religion (very very very very very long) posted by Ezekiel 25:17 on September 02, 2001 at 00:41:32:
: What is Exodus 22:19?
Wouldn't want to spoil it for you... it's just a little something that I think still holds some truth......;)
: Before I go any further here, I'd just like to clarify my main point in this post was that 'fear of death' is one of the foundations of religion.
: My other point was 'fear of death' leads to hedonism and alternative beliefs and seeks to clarify what other options are available.
: Cloning, euthanasia, drugs, abortion, suicide are all issues which are the talking points of current society. I didn't mean new technology was the cause of 'moral crisis', in any other terms than as growing societal thought on the value of human life.
: Personally I believe, that fundamental changes in belief (namely the belief in God) has undergone rapid change due to the advent of new technology (space travel, cloning etc.) Even though, God has made himself fully aware of the new internet techonology and seems to be present at various sites :)
So basically people aren't as naive as they once were? :)
: :Is this a suggestion that if Christianity declines then a measure of good in the world will decline?
: That is the belief of many. I disagree. I merely state that Christianity provides the basis for the morals of a relatively large section of the public. Is it cynical to suggest that lack of belief in Christianity results in many people finding it difficult to behave in a humane fashion?
I don't think Christianity provides the basis for people's morals - they decide that their morals match the tenets of Christianity, so people's morals are simply reinforced by religion. So yes, I think you need to be less cynical about mob rule :)
: That's a very cynical approach to things :)
: I totally agree with that. However, blaming lawyers for divorces is like blaming doctors for causing sickness.
No, blaming lawyers for divorces is like blaming the mosquito for malaria.... Besides, divorces aren't necessarily a bad thing. didn't notice any complaint about lawsuits though!
: A good question and a tough one. My perception is that life is short when compared with the totality of human existence. Our lives no matter how mundane are ours alone, and the sudden ending of life, ours or someone close to us, is a period where people mourn. Undoubtedly the ego has a large role to play in this, but then again, few things in life don't revolve around the ego.
: Basic human instinct revolves around survival primarily, thus fear of death is just part of the natural process for most. (Do I overly generalise here?)
Of course when you compare it to the 'totality of human existance' life is going to seem short! And of course people will mourn when someone close to them passes away. I never said that we didn't want to survive, just that there is no need to fear death as when the time comes, you will have done all you can to put it off anyway....
If you've ever seen someone die of natural causes, they always have a peaceful look on their face at the point of death. They have come to accept death as a natural part of life.
And you should know that all generalisations are bad :)
: If heaven truly existed, we should not mourn the death of others, but celebrate their passing into a better place. Furthermore, why would those who believe in heaven rather spend their lives here in an imperfect world rather than speed their own way to heaven and a perfect existence? Isn't this because this is where some doubt may creep in?
Well for starters I'm pretty sure that the popular belief is that 'speeding' your way to heaven won't actually get you there. But anyway, I don't think it's doubt that stops people, it's something else entirely. Maybe just a feeling that what they are achieving in this life is in some way worthwhile.
: Nothing for eternity and beyond, doesn't that scare most people?
Nothing is known about the afterlife if it does exist so we can't say that it is nothingness for eternity, but even if it was, who are we to argue? I think people would only be scared by this if they feel that they still have something to accomplish in this life...
: I would think that when we die, we are no longer in any reality :) Its difficult to explain, but I'm not trying to state that we exist in any way or form but I lack the vocabulary to be succinct.
Is an afterlife not a reality of sorts?
: Don't you fear death? or do you fear public speaking more? (stupid statistics)
: The only possible reason for not fearing death is if you have another cognizant explanation of what the afterlife consists of, or a very strong sense of will. If you believe, life is all there is, what prevents you from whole-heartedly seeking a life of pure hedonism?
I do not fear death as such. You know that when entering the army, one of the questions they ask you is "If you could know the exact time, place and method of your death, would you want to?" I'd be interested to know your response to this. Then I might better answer your question.
: Hope springs from various sources. Some find inspiration in a poem, others in a religion, whilst some find it internally. (don't try self-operation at home kiddies, hope and souls are non-extractable)
: Losing hope in death, if I may be so bold, is to have the totality of all your achievements in life reduced to nothing. What does it matter if you were President, or written about in history books if you have no consciousness to remember it. When even these history books will be nothing but dust in a few centuries more. Who will remember whether you were a good or bad person, and will it really matter?
What *does* it matter if you were president? Isn't the satisfaction gleaned from such a position worth more than any epitaphs? Your achievements are not reduced to nothing - whether you are a good or bad person is up to the individual and if you act against your nature, you are only lying to yourself... you will not get far.
: The only real hope, is that just before you die, you manage to inspire enough converts to start a new religion based on you, and someday these converts will conquer the world and find a way to resurrect you. :) (start now, time's ticking away)
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