Praying for No Afterlife
I saw a tweet that said, “If there is an afterlife, I will demand an apology from God.”
I immediately understood. Perhaps I am not like many others. But I dread the idea of dying and “waking up” alive somewhere else. I am not eager to run into all of my dead relatives. My relatives were always good church people, so they were headed to heaven, but they didn’t give us the time of day. As a result, I don’t have images of heaven as an idyllic place.
People are most influenced in their beliefs about what happens after death by their religion. I guess I am mostly Mormon, although I have only gone to the actual building for about a year. My parents spent most of my youth doing church hopping and home churching.
Lots of people talk about home schooling, but almost no one talks about home churching. This occurs when fundamentalist Christians withdraw from their churches and begin teaching the principles of their faith at home. They do it because they can’t afford the tithing the Mormons require. Now, to be perfectly honest, I don’t know if this is a real thing. But hell, if my parents were doing it, it must have been happening around the country with other poor people.
Anyhow, I ended up getting this image of heaven that was crowded. It was hierarchical and patriarchal. It sounded political. It sounded like here. Just like here. Oh boy. I can’t wait to get to heaven. Uh huh. No.
A few years later, I saw a Star Trek episode about a immortal character who wanted to end his life. He had to present his case before a tribunal. He made immortality sound awful, too. Without the limitation of time, the endlessness becomes monotony.
So basically, this episode married together the concept of an afterlife where everyone goes to a heaven that just looks like a large senate hall with everyone gossiping and fighting for all time and eternity. People struggling and vying for position. It’s like living in Trump world, but forever. I know, this sounds like hell. But remember, mom and dad taught me all my dead relatives and friends are waiting for me up there. I don’t know how people are organized except in the Mormon’s hierarchical heaven.
One can see how I am all turned inside out about what is heavenly or not about an afterlife.
I want to just pass into nothingness. I want to cease to be. Ash to ash. Dust to dust. As we come from the stars so we go to them.
I wish I had a peaceful conception of a heaven or afterlife or what have you. It might be comforting. Give me an escape. Perhaps I do. I like the idea of becoming one again with the Earth.