What we are

Stephen (@sharper) 10 years, 3 months ago

our consciousness makes us what we are, but all our consciousness is, is a collection of our senses, and our senses eventually form feelings, which add depth to what would otherwise be a sort of “satellite”, a human body just picking up on sights, smells, and sounds. so if all we are is a collection of what we experience, is there anything more? a soul? when we die, it should just be blissful nothingness, right? or is there more? if you have any other ideas about what we are, comment. fyi, i’m high as hell

June 10, 2012 at 7:34 pm
qwertstormer (3) (@qwertstormer) 10 years, 3 months ago ago

We can talk about what life after death might be like, if our consciousness might persist in some form, but when it comes down to it I think we can never know until it happens, and so far it seems like once it happens, we can’t come back to tell others what it’s like, so just make the best of this life, and when it ends, we will get to see for ourselves what happens.

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connman (2) (@donalm95) 10 years, 3 months ago ago

@sharper, Unfortunately , finding out if there is “something more” is a one way trip mate. However, if it is “nothingness” I don’t think that sounds blissful at all. It would mean that life has no meaning. That everything you did before you died , all the worrying about exams and jobs and finding the right girl , was for nothing.

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R.V. Star (151) (@rickvonstar) 10 years, 3 months ago ago

you cant experience being dead

now you have eternal life, because that’s you’ll ever know

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daveb (119) (@daveb) 10 years, 3 months ago ago

@donalm95, That everything you did before you died , all the worrying about exams and jobs and finding the right girl , was for nothing.

unless I’m misreading what could be clever sarcasm I disagree that jobs, exams, and the “right girl” are in any way connected to finding meaning in life. in fact those are most likely distractions . . . but if there is a meaning to life, I seriously doubt it has anything to do with jobs and exams, except maybe the spirit with which you approach those things. but even then, your attitude towards jobs/exams should be the same as your attitude towards cooking and cleaning and all the other stuff you do. hell even sex is a very “earthy” act . . .

personally, I am fine with the idea that life is “for nothing”. it means that this life is a blank canvas and I’m free to paint any picture I damn well please! to me, life on earth – in all it’s glory and misery – is beautiful as it is and needs nothing more to justify it. it IS special.

I talk with my 9-year old about this and the perspective of a child can be really enlightening. he thinks it’s totally amazing that life, the universe and everything exists and doesn’t care what’s behind the curtain (if anything). if there is a higher power we can’t understand or a meaning behind the choas, that’s unfathomable to him. and if it’s all some kind of bizarre accident or fluctuation in the nothing that somehow spun out of control into a universe, that blows his mind. And mine.

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Th-0m (43) (@0negative) 10 years, 3 months ago ago

@daveb, man I love this approach! Kind of the way I see things too! Talking to small children about mind-blowing concepts is the bessssttt. One of the reasons I look forward to having children.

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connman (2) (@donalm95) 10 years, 3 months ago ago

@daveb, Yes I get what you mean about life being a blank canvas and being able to fill it with whatever you like is such a pleasure. However, wouldn’t it be really sucky if out of all the possibilities that could take place after life we get nothing. There is an infinite amount of weird shit that could potentially go down and while nothing is perfectly acceptable , because lets face it we’re lucky to be here in the first place , don’t you agree that it would be so much better to experience something new after you die?

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Al-sd (1) (@alan3825) 10 years, 3 months ago ago

“We are a way for the cosmos to know itself.” ~ Carl Sagan

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daveb (119) (@daveb) 10 years, 3 months ago ago

@donalm95, wouldn’t it be really sucky if out of all the possibilities that could take place after life we get nothing.

hmmm I have a newsflash: You’ll get nothing, and like it!! anything else is gravy. or, frosting.

sure, it would be fascinating if this whole earth-life thing is just some shallow experience and there is something deeper behind the curtain. but to me it’s at least as fascinating if there isn’t anything else, if this is all there is. I think ultimately it’s harder for me to imagine that the universe happened randomly – the idea of it being an illusion of perception or created by some higher power makes more sense, in a way.

and: what if after you died, you found out the reason for this earth-life was to forego any hope of “something more”, and instead be grounded in this moment, embrace it as your whole existence? you know, the whole “now is all you have, that’s why it’s called the present” school of thought? if there is something after this life, maybe we’re not supposed to spend this life wondering or worrying about it . . . flipside would be that maybe we’re supposed to figure out how to trascend this life, see behind the curtain.

I have more questions than answers, that much is for sure . . .

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connman (2) (@donalm95) 10 years, 3 months ago ago

@daveb, “hmmm I have a newsflash: You’ll get nothing, and like it!! anything else is gravy. or, frosting.”

You can’t like nothing , it’s nothing.

I agree , there’s nothing wrong with what we already have and sometimes I feel like even pondering if there’s something more is wrong because I just feel greedy. I just would prefer something else if you get what I mean :)

All I know is that if there is some sort of afterlife I really hope it won’t have as many mysteries as this one ;)

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Alicia Lee (146) (@aliwine) 10 years, 3 months ago ago

Carbon based life forms with and electrical storm running through our bodies, and even in death we shall continue to exist through decomposition and the changing of state from solid to eventually gas. In which keeping a conscious ability to think is arguable, since the complexity of atoms and electrons is still vastly unexplored. It could truly be very possible parts of our being manifest from once central electron. Or perhaps a grouping. Scientifically, that explains life after death to me. And I stick to it because I like the idea.

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Jeslyn (594) (@jeslyntweedie) 10 years, 3 months ago ago

@daveb,

Perhaps, as in some religions where believers are ‘saved’…and say ‘God’ is represented by consciousness…then believing in the Universe, in the connection of everything, in all those metaphysical things we barely are beginning to understand; Maybe believing in THAT, whatever you want to call it will manifest itself after death.

Our brains are powerful things, so maybe the rapture the bible was talking about, and similar things in other religions, judgement day or whatever you want to call it. Well, looking at it metaphorically…well maybe it’s happening already, not all at once, but gradually. Those who choose to embrace happiness, positive attitudes, giving, and love. And those who are choosing not to…or who can’t. Maybe those choices come to fruition after death, not in a heaven or hell scenario…but if you don’t exercise your consciousness, and encompass gratitude for life, to life; How can that part of your being hold together after death?

Maybe Earth is a complex system (there is ridiculous math and algorithms EVERYWHERE) to develop and weed out consciousness for the ‘next step’ or ‘place/community’ we go, maybe if you fail, you get another try.

All very theoretical, dabbling with the parts in my beliefs that have holes and contradictions…but a very interesting subject nonetheless.

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The_truth_is_ (91) (@sirensetmefree) 10 years, 3 months ago ago

@aliwine, I agree up until life after death. I would consider the existence of “life” and “consciousness” as a product (maybe even a bi-product) of chemical and biological reactions trying to become a self-sustainable system.

Not to mention that this kind of argument:

“In which keeping a conscious ability to think is arguable, since the complexity of atoms and electrons is still vastly unexplored.”

…commits the fallacy of composition. Because there are screws in my computer case does not mean that it functions as a screw. Because there are atoms in the molecules in my brain does not mean that my brain functions as an atom.

…Now, to my opinion…

The feeling of content and satisfaction tends to come at the end of a journey; at the end of an experience. To know that you are finished brings this sigh of relief, this sense that one can brag about their accomplishment, and a persistent happiness that something has been done. “Living” is just something I’m doing. Why wouldn’t I look forward to knowing it’ll be over? Life is such an arduous and many times tedious experience with rewards and lessons along the way. I look forward to laying on my death bed and thinking, “I did a good job. Time to let someone else do theirs.”

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Stealf (124) (@stealf) 10 years, 3 months ago ago

I think knowing what happens after life becomes non-existent is the whole point to life. Its always been and always will be an extremely mystery to everyone and that’s such an amazing characteristic of life itself. Our conscious mind may pick up and perceive things, creating new experiences and forming new conscious and subconscious knowledge, but you never really understand what cosmos you’re truly living in, and I think that in itself proves life beyond life exists.

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Grand Kahlib (76) (@kahlib) 10 years, 3 months ago ago

I suspect we are more than merely the sum of our parts. There are subtle forces at work in our lives which transend the materialistic. Transference of energy (such as heat, electricity, and even water) arises from the tendency of things to return to a state of equillibrium (ultimately stagnancy and death). This process is interrupted, delayed by other systems which utilize this principle. Energy continues through movement. Yet it seems stability must eventually prevail, as the material world will never stop “seeking” it’s original state, where all is equal. I think of life as the movement itself, and it gives me hope that perhaps on a deeper level, our experiences are not wasted, but transferred and kept alive. Maybe they are even all pooled together in a mega-conciousness- ( which to me is an utterly alien and terrifying idea). It seems we are to struggle with death until we learn to accept it.

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ashton (1) (@ameginnis) 10 years, 3 months ago ago

Something someone referenced to me on a different post:

You want a physicist to speak at your funeral. You want the physicist to talk to your grieving family about the conservation of energy, so they will understand that your energy has not died. You want the physicist to remind your sobbing mother about the first law of thermodynamics; that no energy gets created in the universe, and none is destroyed. You want your mother to know that all your energy, every vibration, every Btu of heat, every wave of every particle that was her beloved child remains with her in this world. You want the physicist to tell your weeping father that amid energies of the cosmos, you gave as good as you got. And at one point you’d hope that the physicist would step down from the pulpit and walk to your brokenhearted spouse there in the pew and tell him that all the photons that ever bounced off your face, all the particles whose paths were interrupted by your smile, by the touch of your hair, hundreds of trillions of particles, have raced off like children, their ways forever changed by you. And as your widow rocks in the arms of a loving family, may the physicist let her know that all the photons that bounced from you were gathered in the particle detectors that are her eyes, that those photons created within her constellations of electromagnetically charged neurons whose energy will go on forever. And the physicist will remind the congregation of how much of all our energy is given off as heat. There may be a few fanning themselves with their programs as he says it. And he will tell them that the warmth that flowed through you in life is still here, still part of all that we are, even as we who mourn continue the heat of our own lives. And you’ll want the physicist to explain to those who loved you that they need not have faith; indeed, they should not have faith. Let them know that they can measure, that scientists have measured precisely the conservation of energy and found it accurate, verifiable and consistent across space and time. You can hope your family will examine the evidence anYou want a physicist to speak at your funeral. You want the physicist to talk to your grieving family about the conservation of energy, so they will understand that your energy has not died. You want the physicist to remind your sobbing mother about the first law of thermodynamics; that no energy gets created in the universe, and none is destroyed. You want your mother to know that all your energy, every vibration, every Btu of heat, every wave of every particle that was her beloved child remains with her in this world. You want the physicist to tell your weeping father that amid energies of the cosmos, you gave as good as you got. And at one point you’d hope that the physicist would step down from the pulpit and walk to your brokenhearted spouse there in the pew and tell him that all the photons that ever bounced off your face, all the particles whose paths were interrupted by your smile, by the touch of your hair, hundreds of trillions of particles, have raced off like children, their ways forever changed by you. And as your widow rocks in the arms of a loving family, may the physicist let her know that all the photons that bounced from you were gathered in the particle detectors that are her eyes, that those photons created within her constellations of electromagnetically charged neurons whose energy will go on forever. And the physicist will remind the congregation of how much of all our energy is given off as heat. There may be a few fanning themselves with their programs as he says it. And he will tell them that the warmth that flowed through you in life is still here, still part of all that we are, even as we who mourn continue the heat of our own lives. And you’ll want the physicist to explain to those who loved you that they need not have faith; indeed, they should not have faith. Let them know that they can measure, that scientists have measured precisely the conservation of energy and found it accurate, verifiable and consistent across space and time. You can hope your family will examine the evidence and satisfy themselves that the science is sound and that they’ll be comforted to know your energy’s still around. According to the law of the conservation of energy, not a bit of you is gone; you’re just less orderly. Amen.d satisfy themselves that the science is sound and that they’ll be comforted to know your energy’s still around. According to the law of the conservation of energy, not a bit of you is gone; you’re just less orderly. Amen.

Aaron Freeman

This is the true meaning, that there is no overarching meaning, only happiness. Whatever we do, our inevitable fate waits for us. So take this moment (yes – NOW) to make yourself as happy as you can be. Go out and find the people you want yourself to be with. In searching for the meaning of life if you find that nothing matters, then the fact that nothing matters doesn’t matter. Take what is given to you with a smile and seek more.

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