Thursday, 1 February 2018

Do You Believe in Life after Death?

It recently occurred to me that a good answer to questions like this, that is to say, questions which assume there are two possible and reasonable answers when really there is only one, is simply to say as follows. I believe in life. Very frequently the way we frame a question has a bearing on the answers it may have, but if you just cut past the false assumptions that have come up with the question in the first place then maybe you are answering it as it should best be answered by revealing its fundamental invalidity.

Likewise, do you believe in God? What do you mean? God exists. Would you ask do you believe in yourself? Well, some people do, but it's not a serious question. We only think this might be a serious question because our minds have been so knocked out of their natural orbit by wrong thinking and bad education that we can't think straight.

When you think about it, birth and death are events that take place in time but consciousness itself exists always in the now. That is a truism which has become a cliché. But it leads to the thought that, while the form consciousness takes might change, the thing itself remains. So death then appears more like the changing from one state of consciousness to another rather than the termination of consciousness. For it seems improbable that an event that takes place in time can have a permanent effect on the existence or otherwise of something that is essentially timeless.

Therefore to ask if you believe in life after death is a question based on a miscomprehension. If there is life before death, physical death, then there must be life after it too. The real question is what sort of life is this? And the answer to that surely depends on  the quality of the consciousness. 


Anonymous said...

It is the question that the miserable, and depressed ask, who have been brought up with the scientific/materialist world view hammered into them by just about everyone around them since birth. I am one of those people who went through the miserable stage, and I still struggle with really knowing that there is life after death. All the reading of theology and mysticism, in all the forms that it comes, cannot substitute for really knowing the answer, not just having faith, and hope, but KNOWING.

That is why I wish that I had had your experience with the masters. Your position is fortunate, and you cannot really doubt ever again, because disincarnated consciousnesses/spirits have spoken to you, and told you directly that fleshly life is not the only life. What a tremendous gift you were given. You need not rely on faith and hope because you know. Logically, because I believe your MTM account, it should follow that I no longer have doubts about God, the afterlife, etc., but I do still. And I don't feel good about that - at least I have some little insight into what is real, which is more than many people have.

I suppose that you were granted the attention and guidance of the masters because for some reason you were ready for them. It seems to me that you conquered the apathy that often besets those on a spiritual path that you refer to in MTM, and achieved more or less constant 'attentive being'. Perhaps that was it, or perhaps direct help is never given until after a person 'knows' by faith alone first.

I'd be grateful for your thoughts.

William Wildblood said...

Even with the fortunate experience I had I don't know as in really know. I still have to have faith though I concede that I have been given an experience which reduces the amount of faith required.

But I don't think we are really meant to know for absolute certain. We must proceed on faith because that is a test of our spiritual integrity. What I mean is that if you can't doubt then you will behave in a certain way because you have to not because you have chosen to. So it's not a moral matter which it must be if it is to do the job it's supposed to.

God tests us to bring out an active spirituality. The need for faith is part of that test.

Anonymous said...

I thought you'd say something like that. You're right of course. The joy of truly knowing felt by saints, mystics, and contemplatives must be a very powerful thing, because in accounts of their torture and even death for faith in God, they wear a beatific smile, even when they are suffering the flames. It is good we have such accounts - they are a lesson to reflect on in times of doubt.

William Wildblood said...

But even the saints have their dark nights of the soul when all sense of certainty is withdrawn from them and sometimes the greater the saint the darker the night.

Anonymous said...

"the greater the saint the darker the night"

Put into Google, I found this:

A quote from the article:

"Likewise, for some, the dark night comes but once. For others, it comes many times. Usually, it lasts for only a short while. Occasionally, it lasts much longer. But when it finally ends, it ends for good. A definitive work has been accomplished in the soul."

"A definitive work has been accomplished in the soul" - it seems that the "dark night" is a necessary purgative on the journey to God. This is new to me, and something I must think about. I really don't want to, but I think I need to.