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Re: Death and Religion (very very very very very very very long)

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Posted by Ezekiel 25:17 on September 02, 2001 at 23:22:16:

In Reply to: Re: Death and Religion (very very very very very long) posted by Exodus 22:19 on September 02, 2001 at 06:47:52:

: So basically people aren't as naive as they once were? :)

I refuse to answer that question on the basis that it may incriminate humanity.

: 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 :)

Nothing overtly wrong with the majority view prevailing. My concern lies with the fact that humans are by nature conformists. When growing up in a similar background, most choose to accept rather than question. Without questions, how will we ever find the answers?

: 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!

Lawyers are supposed to act as facilitators and participate in fulfilling society's laws and moral values. It is a role akin to being shot as the messenger who brings bad news. (whilst we're still swapping bad similes :))

The problem with society today is not enough people take responsibility for their actions. Values such as love, honour, respect and sacrifice have diminished rapidly. Whether you believe this is true, and whether you believe this is overtly linked to a decline in Christianity is debatable.

: 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....

I would disagree here. Unless you've truly been in an experience wherefore you are on the brink of survival, then I would argue that the closer to death you are, the stronger this fear grows. (E.g. Having someone point a gun at you)

: 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 :)

You state that all generalisations are bad, yet you generalise by stating that anyone who dies of natural causes, dies peacefully :)
Apart from old age, is there actually a natural way to die?
I quote badly 'will thou goest quietly into that last goodnight?'.
Generalisations are poor arguments, which is why I tend to try and avoid them, but its not often possible and we all need a starting point.:)

: 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.

I'm not versed on canon law on this particular issue. Is it a factor to take into account when suicides occur? Not everybody feels their life is worthwhile, which is why so many people question the meaning of life and their existence.
(again I generalise) For what makes a life worthwhile?

: 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...

No matter how much I achieve in this lifetime, there is _always_ something more than I could potentially achieve had I the time and the inclination :)

: 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.

Oh boy, hold your horses, this is going to be long :)
Firstly, let me state that most psychological profiles and analysis are total trash and can be interpreted in a multitude of ways which render them useless apart from wild generalisations. Secondly, let me state that we are again dealing with a question which is not actually possible ever and is too hypothetical to justify. (Like: If you had a wish, what would it be?") Thirdly, I believe in free-will and have no belief in pre-determination in any way or form and that our destinies are our own to choose. We may be limited by our circumstances and background but what we choose to do is our own personal choice. (i.e. I might want to become a concert pianist, but I clearly don't have sufficient talent, yet that does not stop me enjoying playing piano regardless) Lastly, let me answer it anyway!

Of course, I would want to know the exact circumstances of my death. It adds to life something we all seek - certainty. Statistics, odds, probability are present in every situation and to know for certain when one event will occur is an amazing advantage.

Firstly, I would attempt in any way possible to avoid it :) If that was not possible, it would give me an opportunity to set my soul at ease.
Nothing really prepares you to live life to its fullest, until you have experienced death at close hand.

I would take that final opportunity to pay off all my old debts, write final personal letters of farewell and thanks to all my friends and family, and organise my final affairs and legacy. I would also request Mariah Carey's 'The Wind' at my wake :) I'd also consider taking vengeance on all those who I consider have wronged me in the past. Basically, I'd attempt to ensure I could put all my regrets to rest just before I passed away.

: 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.

I don't believe in the concepts of good and evil. Yes, I do mention it throughout my posts yet that is due to my own inadequacy in vocabulary in expressing these concepts in a more cognizant term. Satisfaction from any given event is only transitory when considered from the point of oblivion :) The only concepts I believe which are fulfulling are not past deeds, but hope, love and dreams.

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