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Author Topic:   Eternal Life (thanks, but no thanks)
onifre
Member (Idle past 1061 days)
Posts: 4854
From: Dark Side of the Moon
Joined: 02-20-2008


Message 61 of 296 (497913)
02-06-2009 4:10 PM
Reply to: Message 45 by Modulous
02-06-2009 7:03 AM


Re: Eternal Life vs Temporal Life
Hi Mod,

Why should I not just plunge into the icy waters and have done with it?

If Leonardo De Caprio could do it why not us...?

Apparently God has less of a budget to facilitate your request than the movie Titanic.

I would say, on a serious note, why not...? IF, as admited by jano, we have no clue as to what God is preparing for us in the afterlife, THEN limiting His abilities to not being able to take requests - like yours - is just an assertion. In either case neither of you has any evidence to the contrary. God could very well give all of us the option to control our afterlives. Maybe what is refered to as "eternal bliss" IS "permanent death "...?

You didn't address the dilemma. I've looked around the sinking ship and all of the lifeboats are equally seaworthy to me, some of them offer an eternity of floating around without learning, struggling, or sense of achievement, some of them offer the slow but complete destruction of who I am.

Would you agree though that these concepts of heaven are meerly interpretations of scripture and could very well be completely wrong?

They have been interpreted wrong before, this could very well be the case for heaven and eternity also. So why would you have a dilemma with Gods options when your dilemma seems to be with peoples interpretations of scriptures?

Why should I not just plunge into the icy waters and have done with it?

And if this was the case, that you could do this, or that eternal bliss actually means permanent death - as interpreted by a large group of people(for arguments sake lets say a group equal in size to those who believe as ICANT and jano do) - would the dilemma cease?

Would you be comforatble placing trust on other peoples interpretations and thus ending your original dilemma that there are no options?

As I see it the reason you feel there are no options is that peoples interpretation of scriptures says so, yet if people interpreted it in another way that would favor your desires would you just accept that and end the dilemma?


"I smoke pot. If this bothers anyone, I suggest you look around at the world in which we live and shut your mouth."--Bill Hicks

"I never knew there was another option other than to question everything"--Noam Chomsky


This message is a reply to:
 Message 45 by Modulous, posted 02-06-2009 7:03 AM Modulous has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 62 by Modulous, posted 02-06-2009 4:34 PM onifre has responded

    
Modulous
Member (Idle past 214 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 62 of 296 (497915)
02-06-2009 4:34 PM
Reply to: Message 61 by onifre
02-06-2009 4:10 PM


eternal life and eternal bliss
Would you agree though that these concepts of heaven are meerly interpretations of scripture and could very well be completely wrong?

Yep - I don't want to argue whether this or that scripture is interpreted correctly, I want to hear what each personal religion of anybody that wants to answer the question has to say about this dilemma.

It would have been nice if God had answered me personally, but he seems to be busy at the moment so I'll have to rely on someone to be divinely inspired to give me an answer.

And if this was the case, that you could do this, or that eternal bliss actually means permanent death - as interpreted by a large group of people(for arguments sake lets say a group equal in size to those who believe as ICANT and jano do) - would the dilemma cease?

That's almost a great way out - but it is not bliss I am worried about per se. It is eternal life, and you can't get away with defining eternal life as eternal death, unfortunately :)

As I see it the reason you feel there are no options is that peoples interpretation of scriptures says so, yet if people interpreted it in another way that would favor your desires would you just accept that and end the dilemma?

To be frank, scripture is irrelevant. It just so happens that most people that believe in eternal life happen to do so on the basis of scripture. However, if an atheist, or a religious person with no scripture can formulate a way to make eternal life desirable, I'm all ears.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 61 by onifre, posted 02-06-2009 4:10 PM onifre has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 64 by onifre, posted 02-06-2009 5:51 PM Modulous has responded

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 214 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 63 of 296 (497921)
02-06-2009 5:02 PM


A collation
We're 20% of the way through this thread. There are some interesting answers.

iano's God is like the God of Islam. He requires submission. We should just trust that when he says eternal life in paradise is to be desired, it is, and God does not need to explain it any further. The dilemma doesn't exist because God says so. See Message 59, Message 44.

John 10:10's God will give me the choice of perishing or continuing (unless John believes John was using the word 'perish' as a metaphor like iano's "Biblical death"), but I will go through an eternity of change so in a million years I suppose who I am now will no longer exist, thus my choice seems to be quick death or slow death. Message 27

ICANT's God is promising me a city whose streets are paved with gold, a mansion with a beautiful garden, 72 virgins and hypothetical omnipotence (aka ability to create own universe etc). Message 39

Buzsaw's God promises that it will be blissful. Message 40

Stile postulates an afterlife that continues for as long as you want. This seems to bypass any terminal boredom problems, and he postulates certain 'boundaries' to personal growth and development so that one largely stays the same, but one also changes. Ultimately, neither of us were entirely comfortable with where that seemed to lead though it looked more promising than anything else so far. Message 23

I hope to see if Bluejay or cavediver have any ideas.

Here is the best I managed to do three years ago:

quote:
In a way, my desire for permanence has been found. If the universe just IS and time is but a dimension then Shakespeare is, and 'always' 'will be' an entity in the universe, so will {me} and my loved ones. It isn't just the expanse of space that is wonderful, it is the entirety of space-time that is wonderful, and it often moves me to tears to think that I'm a part of it.

A position I hinted at in Message 37


Naturally I'm grotesquely simplifying everybody's position so far. I'm just trying to collate them into one post for ease of reference.

Edited by Modulous, : No reason given.


Replies to this message:
 Message 75 by Blue Jay, posted 02-07-2009 2:14 AM Modulous has responded
 Message 92 by Stile, posted 02-09-2009 12:44 PM Modulous has acknowledged this reply

  
onifre
Member (Idle past 1061 days)
Posts: 4854
From: Dark Side of the Moon
Joined: 02-20-2008


Message 64 of 296 (497934)
02-06-2009 5:51 PM
Reply to: Message 62 by Modulous
02-06-2009 4:34 PM


Re: eternal life and eternal bliss
That's almost a great way out - but it is not bliss I am worried about per se. It is eternal life, and you can't get away with defining eternal life as eternal death, unfortunately

How can one have eternal "life" when one is dead...? I believe it's eternal "salvation", yes? "Life" is just the way it is said in a conversational sense, but does not make any logical sense. By definition alone if you are dead, end of life.

Thus my appeal to your better judgment in not assuming that scriptural interpretation of what eternity is said to mean is actually correct. Eternal bliss, eternal salvation, eternity, could very well be the end...for eternity. "Life" is just a semantical element added, assumingly, for lack of a better word.

To be frank, scripture is irrelevant. It just so happens that most people that believe in eternal life happen to do so on the basis of scripture. However, if an atheist, or a religious person with no scripture can formulate a way to make eternal life desirable, I'm all ears.

Again, the added bonus of the word "life" doesn't equate it to "life" as establish in a temporal sense. If you are dead life is over.

Eternity in heaven does not mean "life" in heaven.

Edited by onifre, : No reason given.


"I smoke pot. If this bothers anyone, I suggest you look around at the world in which we live and shut your mouth."--Bill Hicks

"I never knew there was another option other than to question everything"--Noam Chomsky


This message is a reply to:
 Message 62 by Modulous, posted 02-06-2009 4:34 PM Modulous has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 67 by Modulous, posted 02-06-2009 6:45 PM onifre has not yet responded

    
Buzsaw
Inactive Member


(1)
Message 65 of 296 (497945)
02-06-2009 6:32 PM
Reply to: Message 45 by Modulous
02-06-2009 7:03 AM


Re: Eternal Life vs Temporal Life
Modulous writes:

Why should I not just plunge into the icy waters and have done with it?

Because of the uncertainties of physical death and whether the soul dies. The evidence supportive to the Biblical record implicates what could be a foolish gamble on your part, relative to properties of the soul/spirit of mankind.


BUZSAW B 4 U 2 C Y BUZ SAW.
The immeasurable present eternally extends the infinite past and infinitely consumes the eternal future.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 45 by Modulous, posted 02-06-2009 7:03 AM Modulous has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 68 by Modulous, posted 02-06-2009 6:55 PM Buzsaw has responded

  
Straggler
Member
Posts: 10284
From: London England
Joined: 09-30-2006


Message 66 of 296 (497946)
02-06-2009 6:35 PM
Reply to: Message 59 by iano
02-06-2009 3:55 PM


Re: Logic Vs Faith?
You're less antagonistic than some

I have tried to be less antagonistic more recently. I do not always succeed however...

Straggler writes:

Man is an inquisitive speculative beast. To deny speculation is to deny our nature.

I agree. And when you can deflate speculative balloons with speculative pins the worth of speculation is made manifest.

:laugh: Yet again you demonstrate a flair for analogy that I enjoy irrespective of any disagreement in position.

Straggler writes:

The choice seems to be speculation rooted in logic or speculation rooted in faith.

Any possible reassurance relies on having faith that God's plan includes that which is above and beyond logic as we know it.

Logic as we know it - indeed.

Well if God's logic is not logic as we know it then potentially black can be white, light can be dark, up can be down and true can be false.

All manner of "logical" contradictions are possible. In fact regarding this matter we can both be simultaneously wrong and right and all in-between.

In which case all debate is futile.

(as if we didn't know that anyway ;))


This message is a reply to:
 Message 59 by iano, posted 02-06-2009 3:55 PM iano has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 87 by iano, posted 02-08-2009 7:16 PM Straggler has responded

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 214 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 67 of 296 (497948)
02-06-2009 6:45 PM
Reply to: Message 64 by onifre
02-06-2009 5:51 PM


when metaphysics and semantics collide
How can one have eternal "life" when one is dead...? I believe it's eternal "salvation", yes? "Life" is just the way it is said in a conversational sense, but does not make any logical sense. By definition alone if you are dead, end of life.

I'm not suggesting one can have eternal 'life' when one is dead. I am simply asking about eternal life - whether my body ceases its metabolic processes at some point during my life or not.

Thus my appeal to your better judgment in not assuming that scriptural interpretation of what eternity is said to mean is actually correct. Eternal bliss, eternal salvation, eternity, could very well be the end...for eternity. "Life" is just a semantical element added, assumingly, for lack of a better word.

It is just semantics, you are quite right. But I am specifically talking about eternal consciousness, an ongoing experience, an afterlife, the promise of eternal life that many religious believers state they believe will happen.

All you are saying is that there may be no eternal consciousness, which is fine by me, and that the scriptures may be saying that but that few if any people have interpreted it that way. Fine by me too. Either way, in this scenario I don't get eternal life/consciousness/experience/the eternal life that many state they believe. Instead salvation/bliss is exactly what I wanted: oblivion.

Again, the added bonus of the word "life" does equate it to "life" as establish in a temporal sense. If you are dead life is over.

Eternity in heaven does not mean "life" in heaven.

I don't think a semantic argument is really important. If you think the term 'life after death' is oxymoronic - I agree. But its a convenient four letter word that expresses a certain meaning that most people can happily comprehend. I don't have to spend three volumes of work defining exactly what I am trying to say precisely because I am asking for the opinions of others as to what they think this 'afterlife' is meant to be like, and why I might want to have it.

As I said, scripture is entirely irrelevant. Religion is entirely irrelevant. The point in the OP was generally driving towards a certain concept of permanent awareness/consciousness/'life'/being/existential perception/whatever-three-volume-concept-you-need-to-basically-get-what-I-am-driving-at, which I dressed in religious robes knowing that most people who have a strong opinion on what eternal awareness/consciousness/'life'/being/existential perception/whatever-three-volume-concept-you-need-to-basically-get-what-I-am-driving-at are religious.

Now I appreciate that if we're going to get really hands on about this, we might have to do the metaphysical legwork about what exactly I mean and if you want to go down that road I'm perfectly happy to do so - but only if that is where you want to go with it all.

Your objection was nicely put in Jay Rosenberg's, Thinking Clearly About Death:

quote:
Unfortunately, however, the answer is...a plain, unequivocal, "No, there is no life after death." For death, is the end of life.

He goes on to try and formulate a better question thusly:

quote:
Does a person's history necessarily come to an end with that person's death?

Which I still find problematic and he goes on to phrase it as

quote:
Is a person's death an event in that person's history

Which is getting closer to accuracy. But it still needs refinement; For instance we still don't know what a person is. We might need some stronger suggestion that the history of whatever a person is, continues after whatever it is we are calling death.

Well - you can see this can get muggy quite easily. If you want to continue down that rabbit hole, I'll come along with you. Hopefully, for the moment, we can settle on the reformulated question "Is there anything to be desired in an infinitely long period of awareness/consciousness/'life'/being/existential perception/history/whatever-three-volume-concept-you-need-to-basically-get-what-I-am-driving-at"?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 64 by onifre, posted 02-06-2009 5:51 PM onifre has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 74 by ICANT, posted 02-06-2009 10:24 PM Modulous has responded

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 214 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 68 of 296 (497950)
02-06-2009 6:55 PM
Reply to: Message 65 by Buzsaw
02-06-2009 6:32 PM


mixed metaphors
Because of the uncertainties of physical death and whether the soul dies. The evidence supportive to the Biblical record implicates what could be a foolish gamble on your part, relative to properties of the soul/spirit of mankind.

I think we're just getting our metaphors mixed up.

I see lots of lifeboats. The lifeboats represent possible afterlives. There is a Heaven boat and a Hell boat. There is the Elysian Fields boat and the Hades Boat. There is a Nirvana Boat and the Realm of being skinned alive boat. There is an Astral Plane boat. All of these boats promise eternal life and they all look equally seaworthy to me. None of them looks appealing. Thus I would rather have none of them/oblivion/death of the soul (which I represented by just jumping into the ocean without a life boat).


This message is a reply to:
 Message 65 by Buzsaw, posted 02-06-2009 6:32 PM Buzsaw has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 69 by Buzsaw, posted 02-06-2009 7:44 PM Modulous has responded

  
Buzsaw
Inactive Member


(1)
Message 69 of 296 (497961)
02-06-2009 7:44 PM
Reply to: Message 68 by Modulous
02-06-2009 6:55 PM


Re: Examination Of Options
Modulous writes:

All of these boats promise eternal life and they all look equally seaworthy to me.

Perhaps you have spiritual glaucoma. The deceiving devil's rafts appear fine on the surface but are are full of termites and dry rot if you examine closely.


BUZSAW B 4 U 2 C Y BUZ SAW.
The immeasurable present eternally extends the infinite past and infinitely consumes the eternal future.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 68 by Modulous, posted 02-06-2009 6:55 PM Modulous has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 70 by Modulous, posted 02-06-2009 7:47 PM Buzsaw has not yet responded

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 214 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 70 of 296 (497962)
02-06-2009 7:47 PM
Reply to: Message 69 by Buzsaw
02-06-2009 7:44 PM


Re: Examination Of Options
Perhaps you have spiritual glaucoma. The deceiving devil's rafts appear fine on the surface but are are full of termites and dry rot if you examine closely.

By seaworthy I mean 'will actually successfully give me eternal life'. I'm assuming that in Hell I'll get eternal life? Perhaps we should just drop the metaphors and return to the OP - maybe that'd avoid this confusion?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 69 by Buzsaw, posted 02-06-2009 7:44 PM Buzsaw has not yet responded

  
ICANT
Member
Posts: 6187
From: SSC
Joined: 03-12-2007


Message 71 of 296 (497974)
02-06-2009 8:56 PM
Reply to: Message 41 by Vacate
02-06-2009 3:02 AM


Re: The theocratic dictatorship of heaven
Hi Vacate,

Vacate writes:

Have you really thought out the meaning of eternity?

Sure I have.

It is one great big now.

I had said there would be no sun.

Vacate writes:

Why not?

If you had quoted the entire sentence you would have had your why answered.

ICANT writes:

There will be no sun to count days by as God will be the light as He was in Genesis 1:3.

From Message 15

God Bless,


"John 5:39 (KJS) Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me."
This message is a reply to:
 Message 41 by Vacate, posted 02-06-2009 3:02 AM Vacate has not yet responded

    
ICANT
Member
Posts: 6187
From: SSC
Joined: 03-12-2007


Message 72 of 296 (497977)
02-06-2009 9:11 PM
Reply to: Message 43 by Modulous
02-06-2009 6:34 AM


Re: God - great designer, poor civil engineer
Hi Mod,

Modulous writes:

My parent's created my eternal soul?

You did not exist until the egg was fertilized at that moment you existed an eternal being.

God Bless,


"John 5:39 (KJS) Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me."
This message is a reply to:
 Message 43 by Modulous, posted 02-06-2009 6:34 AM Modulous has acknowledged this reply

    
ICANT
Member
Posts: 6187
From: SSC
Joined: 03-12-2007


Message 73 of 296 (497979)
02-06-2009 9:39 PM
Reply to: Message 57 by Straggler
02-06-2009 1:54 PM


Re: The theocratic dictatorship of heaven
Hi Straggler,

Straggler writes:

Are you saying that God does not choose which eternal souls will exist?

That eternal existence is the product of random biological processes?

God does not choose which eternal being will exist. Yep I said that.

It is the product of random biological processes. Yep I said that.

Does God know which ones will be born? Yep.

Does God know which ones will believe in and trust Him to give them eternal life? Yep

How does God know that? He is God and knows everything.

Straggler writes:

Your materialistic view of heaven tells us more about you than it does the nature of God or the afterlife.

I wasn't the engineer or architect that drew the plans or built the New Jerusalem.

I just reported what was there.

And was reporting that it was so valuable we would trample it under our feet.

Straggler writes:

I have heard you claim before that those of us who disbelive seek to be "our own God". However it seems that it is you who seeks to be a God. Not I who seeks only the nothingness of oblivion at the end of my mortal existence.

I do not seek to be anything. I am a child of the King and when the King comes back I will be like Him.

I have not tried to determine what I will be or where I will be. I accepted what God offered me.

You on the other hand and Mod wants to shake your fist in God's face and say no I will have no part of your plan. Just let me cease to exist.

It ain't going to happen. Sorry.

God Bless,


"John 5:39 (KJS) Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me."
This message is a reply to:
 Message 57 by Straggler, posted 02-06-2009 1:54 PM Straggler has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 78 by Straggler, posted 02-07-2009 9:33 AM ICANT has responded

    
ICANT
Member
Posts: 6187
From: SSC
Joined: 03-12-2007


Message 74 of 296 (497982)
02-06-2009 10:24 PM
Reply to: Message 67 by Modulous
02-06-2009 6:45 PM


Re: when metaphysics and semantics collide
Hi Mod,

Modulous writes:

I'm not suggesting one can have eternal 'life' when one is dead. I am simply asking about eternal life - whether my body ceases its metabolic processes at some point during my life or not.

The physical body you have will cease to exist at the end of your life on earth.

Your mind and spirit will exist forever.

At the resurrection you will get an eternal body to house your eternal mind and spirit.

I do not like to talk about eternal life as you but that is what people understand the easiest.

I prefer to talk about eternal existence in an eternal now.

Time is for mortals.

There will be no time in eternity only existence.

God Bless,


"John 5:39 (KJS) Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me."
This message is a reply to:
 Message 67 by Modulous, posted 02-06-2009 6:45 PM Modulous has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 76 by Modulous, posted 02-07-2009 7:09 AM ICANT has not yet responded

    
Blue Jay
Member (Idle past 808 days)
Posts: 2843
From: You couldn't pronounce it with your mouthparts
Joined: 02-04-2008


Message 75 of 296 (497997)
02-07-2009 2:14 AM
Reply to: Message 63 by Modulous
02-06-2009 5:02 PM


Re: A collation
Hi, Modulous.

Modulous writes:

I hope to see if Bluejay or cavediver have any ideas.

I apologize for taking so long on this. I have tried multiple times to formulate a response that would contribute somehow to the discussion, but it keeps coming out as really bizarre gibberish that I am frankly embarrassed to post, even under the anonymity of the internet.

Because my comprehension is so significantly dependent on the phenomenon that I think of as my “self,” I am not afforded the capacity to fathom what a universe without my “self” in it would be like, so I am at a loss to definitively answer any dilemma about the consequences of the existence or non-existence of my “self.”

Thus, I am completely unable to render an appropriate response to your argument that perpetuating a mutable “self” will eventually end in the dissolution of that “self.” If the “self” is me, I just don’t see how it could ever cease to be me.

Sure, things change regularly: I could not accurately describe myself as the same person I was ten years ago. All future Bluejays will likely also differ from right-now Bluejay, and from each other, and there may be a long succession of different Bluejays before the sequence comes to an end. But, so far, there has always been a common thread that unites all Bluejays together. That common thread, the experiential continuity, seems to be the only phenomenon that is actually identifiable with “myself” by any standard that holds any sort of meaning to me.

I’m afraid I simply cannot wrap my brain around the concept of this phenomenon transforming into or being replaced by another, just as I’m unable to fathom the sensation of “being Modulous” and reading this post for the first time. I can’t wrap my brain around the concept of this phenomenon of “self” actually coming to an end, or of a universe that exists independent of my own existence. And finally, I also cannot wrap my brain around the concept of existence "outside of time." My perspective reaches a singularity at these points.

I just don’t know what else to say about this.


-Bluejay/Mantis/Thylacosmilus

Darwin loves you.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 63 by Modulous, posted 02-06-2009 5:02 PM Modulous has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 77 by Modulous, posted 02-07-2009 7:38 AM Blue Jay has responded
 Message 88 by Buzsaw, posted 02-08-2009 7:53 PM Blue Jay has not yet responded

  
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