100 Interesting Things: #3 Death

There are almost 7 billion people in the world and in 100 years 99.9% of them will be dead. That’s the great thing about death, for the time being at least, it happens to everyone. However, no-one has a clue what happens afterwards. Of course, for the dead, there is no “afterwards”. The brain, which ticks like a clock during life, stops ticking at the moment of death, stopping time for the brain’s owner.

All religious beliefs assume the continuity of the soul through time. Christians believe the soul goes on to heaven or hell. Buddhists believe in reincarnation, and I think they assume that the new animal will live on earth after the old animal in terms of Earth time.

Nietzsche wrote about the concept of Eternal Return whereby every “soul” on Earth is doomed to live their lives over and over again. We’re not talking about Groundhog Day here, where you get endless chances to make things better. We’re talking the same identical life recurring infinitely. I’m not sure if Nietzsche intended it, but this concept highlights the absurdity of “soul”: because there is exactly zero difference between living the same life infinite times, and living it once. Just like “Howard the Duck” on DVD , it doesn’t matter how many times it’s watched, it’s still a shit movie.

We have to get used to the idea that there is no soul, and there is nothing for us to experience after death, but at the same time, it’s ok. Our lives are self-contained atomic units, like a painting or a movie. When we think about lives like JFK, Marilyn Monroe, or Michael Jackson we kind of accept this, but it is true for all of us, as well as the pet dogs we owned as children. Look up JFK on Wikipedia and you’ll see something like:

John Fitzgerald "Jack" Kennedy (May 29, 1917 – November 22, 1963), often 
referred to by his initials JFK was the 35th  President of the...

The entity JFK starts in 1917 and ends in 1963. There is no JFK outside those limits… He’s dead.

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One Response to “100 Interesting Things: #3 Death”

  1. Joyce Says:

    ok, i get the message. it’s a wonder how anyone can live their lives according to moral values knowing that nothing matters

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