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What happens after we die?

User Thread
 32yrs • F •
A CTL of 1 means that secret07 is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
What happens after we die?
to those of you who believe evolution. what happens after we die? is there anything that seperates humanity from animals? and, if not, what makes us so different from the rest of the animal kingdom? i am trying my best to understand this viewpoint and any feedback would be appreciated.

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"life sucks but its better than the alternative"
 43yrs • M
A CTL of 1 means that Ironwood is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
I don't prescribe to either theory, I know that I have know idea and so make no claims.

Let me ask you this real quick, what purpose could the idea of an everlasting soul possibly serve, what purpose makes more sense than it simply serving as coping mechanism for a bunch of confused and desperate and lonely "higher thinkers"?

There are 2 main differences that tend , not to separate but to spread a gap between humans and "other" animals, and those are opposable thumbs and bigger brains. To say that simply because we can't communicate "verbally" with most animals ( which is bunk, animals understand us better than we do them , and we communicate with eachother everday through both verbal and other means) Dolphins have the next largest brain if I remeber correctly which is about the same size as ours, and we know them to have one of the most complicated vocabularies in their own language, which all animals have, language that us ignorant people don't understand so we call it inferior. We can't even talk to eachother right, we don't need to be making any stupid claims about inferior commincations, and though it is highly debated, it has been suggested and implied, and oh so obvious, about how animals are emotional creatures, generally expressed to be lacking higher brain function (some evidence based on brain size and make up, but it is highly irresponsible to claim knowledge of just what brains do yet, for we as humans are still very behind in understanding any brain)

But, we emotionally interact with animals, and they react with what is so often reffered to as primal instincts which we claim we have, yet religion feels is different somehow. We are not in control of our emotions (or resulting actions at times), and that is basically all we say that makes a beast a beast, so there is really no basis for separating humans and animals in the way we do, other than to appease our feelings and reactions to killing animals and using and abusing them and to claim we have a higher purpose so we don't get all depressed. People are going be forced to look at the nature of man with responsibility one day rather than with specicentric ignorance. Don't even know if thats a word but i know what i meant.

Sorry bout that being off topic, but it was a point you made that I have opinions about, as for where that leaves us when we die, well, really, it shares some relation and shows how similar religion and science can be, and at the base of each is the same. Science would say that we are all made of stardust, they same materials and building blocks across the universe, and that this energy and matter never goes away but is only changed and transferred, untill the collapse of the universe and the reuniting of everything into nothing, or everything or whatever we don't understand yet.

The soul concept is saying that we are of God, be it a piece of him or of his essence and creation, and that it never goes away and is destined to do nothing more than eventually go back to God, right? (well, there is a purposeful destiny if ever i heard one, glad thats the one that caught on)

If religion would just stick to its simiple claims and bases, there wouldn't be all this bickering about science and religion, but people are desperate to be led, and since people usually don't move till pushed (because we don't know things and fear both the unknown and its possible consecuences) we are usually angry when confronting anything new, because anger is a defense and survival mechanism and we are just animals. And in this fear people look to guidance, and since they sorta have chosen a source, religion, they try to make it apply to everything with out really figuring things out for themselves, but the point being that because they are usaully not happy when facing these issues and they have a scape goat for the responsibility of their actions (God's will, as determined by themselves) they usually come up with all the particularly angry (especially on emotional subjects as they tend to be) arguments you see about gays, abortion, race, and general human advancement. Where they know they aren't happy about it (it feels wrong), can't explain why, so it must be because God thinks its bad, this is dangerous thinking. And usually things that feel wrong or bad, feel so only because us being taught it is bad as well as the confirmation of this teaching by experience of emotional pain as promised, but the pain tends not to come from any issue actually being wrong or physically hurtful, but rather it affects insecurities, or ideals with attached emotions (for any number of personal or influential reasons), and the important and original point to this is these ideals and insecurities are generaly taught (by laws or beliefs which tend to realistically fluctuate), or learned by the results of such teachings in terms of developed insecurities (like anytime you are feel wrong for experiencing a natural feeling or instinct) and the interactions of people and their resulting insecurity plagued attempts of socializing.

I guess a good question for you to ask yourself is, why exactly have you and so many others come to the conclusion that we are different and superior to animals? I know the main reason, because the bible told me so (well in the search for truth and understanding, sorry that doesn't cut it), and because of the reality that the idea of lesser creatures lends itself to our personal gain while eleviating the most possible responsibility and guilt. And folks, thats what its all about.

The soul idea leads to confusion by attempting (desperately i might add) to seperate a romantic notion that is completely based on and controlled by uncontrolable emotions from physical reality.


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"The Greatest Enemy of Knowledge is Not Ignorance, It is the ILLUSION of Knowledge. Stephen Hawking"
[  Edited by Ironwood at   ]
 32yrs • F •
A CTL of 1 means that secret07 is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
i will admit that there is no proof of us being different then animals. it is a point that i know very well it is useless to argue, but me, being who i am, am going to try anyways. in all my years (3) of middle school Bible class and high school theology, i hav never been given a clearly defined answer to this question. this may arise simply from the school containing about 500 students and ten teachers. i mean, seriously, how much can you get from that? ok, well im done with my autobiography so here goes. i noticed one point that i found interesting. in every environment, whether it be jungle, desert, artic, anything, every animal fills a niche. if a niche is taken over by a superior animal, the inferior one dies off. human beings are the only creature who dont fit this mold. wherever we go, we take over, we dont fill a niche. we create our own, totally changing our environment.

i suppose if one simply believes that the universe is always creating and recreating itself, then every time earth gathers itself out of its ball of stuff and becomes a planet again, it could be argued that a new race like humanity evolves. however, there is absolutily no proof for this theory. it is something made up to fight creation with.

as to phisical differences between animals and humans, those are simple observations. i dont think the soul is part of the brain so brain size doesnt effect it. i recently read an article about a person who's brain was totally shut down for a surgery. all brain readings were gone. the person was clinically dead and then some. however, after being jolted awake, she talked about every procedure that had been done to her. she knew the tools that had been used. she knew things that she could not possible have known.

this brought up certain questions in the minds of sientists. it made nessasary the admittion to something they grudgingly called a soul. an awareness outside of the body.

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"life sucks but its better than the alternative"
 43yrs • M
A CTL of 1 means that Ironwood is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
I wasn't saying the soul and brain are in any way connected, I think the soul was made up to fight a fear of death.

As for your surgery story, I have heard of lots of stories that have made claims and arguments to one side or the other, but they too are just observations influenced by what we are wanting to believe, if the soul idea hadn't caught on, you wouldn't be having this conversation, but it did and you believe it, and now to you that is evidence of it. To me, its another possiblility that is far from concrete evidence of anything.

An awareness outside of the body doesn't make a soul a reality, we know little as to how the brain works and what all it is capable of, first of all, this story or its implied meanings may be complete bullshit, it could be fake (please dont forget that).


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"The Greatest Enemy of Knowledge is Not Ignorance, It is the ILLUSION of Knowledge. Stephen Hawking"
 32yrs • F •
A CTL of 1 means that secret07 is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
your right. any informatin i obtain from any source, including my own observations, that i see with my own eyes, could be totally wrong. we cant really know anything. that's why we have faith. if the soul and brain arn't connected, then where is the soul? what is it?

assuming for the moment the story was true, how could a person see real things when they hav no eyes? how is that phisically possible?

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"life sucks but its better than the alternative"
 34yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Angelfire is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
"to those of you who believe evolution. what happens after we die?"
I don't know, from a purely scientific point of view, nobody knows. Probably what happens is the same as what happens when you sleep. Sleep being when consciousness is disconnected from your senses, death represents a permanent disconnect. But we don't know, and from a philosophical point of view, I would tend towards some sort of reincarnation (but I am in no way certain and I don't think I can explain why I think this is likely).

" is there anything that seperates humanity from animals?"
From a moral point of view, no. From a biological point of view, yes. Human beings are the only animals to have culture. By culture I don't mean art and literature, I mean that each generation teaches the new generation based on what it was taught before them and their experiences. Thus each generation of humans is different from the old ones, but not just in a genetic way, more importantly in a cultural way.

Example : what's the difference between an Eskimo and Chinese peasant? Genetically, there's a bit, they look different but not much. Culturally there is a huge difference, the Eskimo can make fur coats, hunt walruses and generally knows life in the polar wastes. A Chinese peasant knows how to live in wet marshes and grow rice.

The point is that humans are different from each other in more then a genetic way. And human society evolves much faster then animal society because of this (only 200 years ago 90% of us were farmers, now maybe 5%). That capacity for humans to "evolve" in a non-genetic way is what allows humans to wipe out other animals and dominate an environment instead of finding a niche.

Other then that, we are fancy animals.

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"Durch Nacht und Blut das Licht"
 32yrs • F •
A CTL of 1 means that secret07 is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
for once i agree with u dumbteen. all u said makes perfect sense if u look at it from a strictly evolutionary view. however, i must pose the question, what causes our loves, our hates, our passions? are they just "useless passions", (quoting someone from my Bible textbook of whom i've forgotten their name)

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"life sucks but its better than the alternative"
 34yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Angelfire is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
All emotions can be given evolutionary origins I use "good mate" as meaning healthy strong men, beautiful women or politically powerful/wealthy men :
- embarassment occurs when your rank in the society has been lowered, you are ridiculed and laughed at, and therefore you have less chances of getting a "good mate". When your body embarasses you, she is telling you not to do that stupid thing which lowered your social rank
- lust occurs especially in males, its origin is a "fuck and flee" strategy. Essentially, the guy makes the baby, but then runs off to make more babies.
- love occurs in both sexes, it allows humans to invest in their children. A "quality instead of quantity" strategy. It allows couples to remain together, hopefully long enough for them to rear their children.
- hate and anger are a defence mechanism against abuse
- jealousy is when someone else has something which elevates her social rank (it can be a status symbol a car or dress or simply good looks), it can motivate you to get that same thing, or ruin it in the other.

I can't think of any others right now but you get the idea. Emotions are "preprogramming", they represent a huge variety of social strategies (develloped over many generations, those who had the strategies made more children then those who didn't) to help you appear like a more suitable mate and motivate you to find a mate.

These strategies don't always work, they can backfire (say if you're embarassed about something and leads to too much shyness, making you less social), but globally they are helpful, which is why they exist.

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"Durch Nacht und Blut das Licht"
 43yrs • M
A CTL of 1 means that Ironwood is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
to answer you secret, and to elaborate or clarify why teen said was,

Love, passion all these emotions are survival programs, and it only gets confusing when we try to interpret or give them other meaning, purpose beyond survival. The fact that we are not in control of emotions, though we can control ourselves and our resulting actions do to emotions, to an extent, further shows a lack of romantic idealist meaning to any emotion or feeling. If we don't make babies we don't exist.

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"The Greatest Enemy of Knowledge is Not Ignorance, It is the ILLUSION of Knowledge. Stephen Hawking"
 32yrs • F •
A CTL of 1 means that secret07 is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
ok that makes sense. but different people hav different ideas of social standing. for instance, lets take some high school social groups, since that is what im most familiar with. lets say i like smart guys, and my 1 friend likes attractive guys, and my 2nd friend likes any guy that will pay attention to her. why the difference in attractions?

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"life sucks but its better than the alternative"
 34yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Angelfire is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
" lets say i like smart guys, and my 1 friend likes attractive guys, and my 2nd friend likes any guy that will pay attention to her. why the difference in attractions?"
The first rule about evolution is that things which aren't essential, aren't precise. Hence you might disagree with your friends over whether or not this or that guy is cute but there is a clear trend :
Guys for instance have different ideas of who is cute, but generally : large breasts, well shaped ass not too wide waste, globally and hourglass shape. That is the trend.

Now I honestly don't know who girls find cute, but generally I'm sure you can agree with you on who is ugly, pimples, rashes (or any physical sign of something disease-like) are a turn-off, as is generally, being short or missing teeth.

General trends do exist, and I'm sure you don't think a guy who is regularily laughed at/humiliated to be sexy. And I don't need to point out that girls are more likely to like a guy with status symbols, like say, some nice wheels and some dress-sense.

There are of course counter-examples, you might say that in the best people found fat people sexy or that some african tribes have deformed lips as a sign of beauty, but these are cultural (the first rule of humans, is that although they have genetic tendencies, they can get culturally used to anything). It has been shown that babies react more positively to faces most people would describe as "beautiful", thus show that there is a flexible definition of beauty that is programmed into us.

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"Durch Nacht und Blut das Licht"
 43yrs • M
A CTL of 1 means that Ironwood is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
the differences in attractions, like teen said, is dependant on tons of variables (infinite most likely), from form to function, to what you are used to what makes you feel good, to your personal opinion as to what trait would best serve you and your child and even if a grand enough thought (such as scientist etc), the world, etc etc

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"The Greatest Enemy of Knowledge is Not Ignorance, It is the ILLUSION of Knowledge. Stephen Hawking"
[  Edited by Ironwood at   ]
 32yrs • F •
A CTL of 1 means that secret07 is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
i would disagree with the appearence thing. i might just be weird, but a guys appearence genuinly doesnt matter to me. it seems i can get used to almost anything if he has the other attributes that i want. as to dress sense and cars, in my experience this has no other effect then to make the guy arragant and domineering. the same to overly smooth guys. they treat a girl as though they were programming a machine, say the right lines, do the right things, and u get the girl.

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"life sucks but its better than the alternative"
 34yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Angelfire is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
It obviously depends on the person, but you need only look at fashion/skin/hygene adverts to see people have figured out what the "ideal" looks like. No one likes to bespot on the ideal, but its rare to be very far off it.

But anyway, this isn't that relevant to the debate. The vast majority of emotions are explainable by evolution.

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"Durch Nacht und Blut das Licht"
 43yrs • M
A CTL of 1 means that Ironwood is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
ya evolution based on the desire/need to survive.

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"The Greatest Enemy of Knowledge is Not Ignorance, It is the ILLUSION of Knowledge. Stephen Hawking"
What happens after we die?
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