Friday, September 12, 2008

Death. Part 1

Continuing my recent ramble on life, here is death. Not literally of course (well, I hope not) but certainly a ramble on and around the topic death. Suitably cheerful for a Friday afternoon, I feel.
Now, I can’t promise this wont turn into a rant. Rants seem to creep up on me unannounced when I’m blogging. Nor can I promise this wont end up completely off-topic. But so what? It’s my blog, so, nye-nye-nye-nye-nye.

What is death then? Is it really the end? Do we just disappear from the planet, leaving our bodies to rot in a hole? Having recently re-watched the episodes of Torchwood season 2 dealing with Owen’s ‘death’ (Dead Man Walking and A Day in the Death – sorry if you haven’t seen them yet…), the idea of there just being nothing but darkness is quite a disturbing thought.

But is death terrifying because we fear the unknown? Have we created various myths of an afterlife to stave of those moments in the middle of the night when you sit there, pondering your existence and wondering if it’s ever going to get any better?

Or is it a very Pratchett-esque situation, that whatever we believe happens comes true for us? In which case, I’m going to be resting in the Summerland for a while before reincarnating (hopefully not as a frog this time – that’s another story). In short: Paaaartaaaay! Care to join me, anyone?!

I’d like to think there is something after this life, and not just because the thought helps me to sleep. I just like the idea if there being something more to it than ‘wake up, get up, eat, work, eat, work, socialise, have a bath, eat, drink some wine, go to bed, try to sleep’. Because if there is nothing beyond that, no afterlife, no heaven, no souls or spirits going on to a better place, then what does that say about gods and goddesses? It seems to me that you can’t really have one without the other. You can’t have a spiritual entity if you have no spirit. If you have a spirit, what happens to it? Does it just dissipate at death? And if it does, then what’s the point in having one?

So, I believe in an afterlife. In fact I believe in several. I honestly believe that in the same way that we have different gods (see ‘What makes you more right than me?'), we have different afterlives and it’s up to us where we go. So, I might see you there, or I might be in the heaven next door. Bang on the wall if we get too raucous…


Richard said...

I recently heard of one eminent Christian theologian/philosopher who suggested (possibly flippantly) that when we get to heaven, it will be just as we expected it to be, in the sense that the fundamentalist Christians will be in a heaven where only they are (so that they can continue in the belief that you have to be "one of them" to get in) and us wishy-washy liberals will be in a heaven where... well, heaven only knows!

Mylissa said...

Goodness me Richard, I didn't realise you actually read this blog!

There's actually quite a funny pagan joke to that effect, but I can't quite remember it... I'll see if I can google it.