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Eternal Life does not exist
01-03-2009, 11:59 AM
Post: #1
Eternal Life does not exist
As much as I like the idea of death not being the end of my or your conscious existence, eternal life is not something any of us are going to get. As beings evolved in consciousness and sentience over millenia, with a pedigree going back to single celled organisms and simple strands of protein, there is simply no way that being self aware and being frightened of a final complete fade-to-black death requires that we can deny it and invent the idea of immortality. Nor does it allow us to accept biblical distortions and revisionsim of the actual message Christ came to deliver: love one another, act charitably toward one another, look out for others' needs, be kind, be unselfish, be generous.

Life is a cycle from birth to death, with birth and death having in common no self, no awareness, and nothingness before and after. Nothing to be feared, but something to be accepted. And even without the promise of a eternal life of joy, still being faithful to the principle of life in community, moral and kind, including faith in God. We will live on only through our children, not through any immortality of our souls (much as I would like it the other way).

The focus on immortality makes many people irresponsible when it comes to looking out for others. Nursing one's soul along, becoming "born again into eternal life", causes a selfish focus on the individual and too little on others: "what's important is that I'm right with God" type nonsense. If I could, I would banish all talk of born again and heaven, and encourage people to be responsible for life and death here. If, and I don't believe it for an instant, that there is an after death lottery jackpot, so be it, but it mustn't detract from living a decent and moral, Christian life.
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01-03-2009, 01:05 PM
Post: #2
RE: Eternal Life does not exist
wrong.eternal life is given.

Good evil salvation
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01-03-2009, 05:19 PM (This post was last modified: 01-03-2009 05:20 PM by Anglican.)
Post: #3
RE: Eternal Life does not exist
(01-03-2009 11:59 AM)twenty-two20 Wrote:  Nor does it allow us to accept biblical distortions and revisionsim of the actual message Christ came to deliver: love one another, act charitably toward one another, look out for others' needs, be kind, be unselfish, be generous.

It never ceases to amaze me the way people living in the twenty first century can claim to have a better knowledge of what Christ said and taught than somebody living within a generation or so of the events under discussion.

I suppose they have heard some feint references to "higher criticism", and haven't a clue what its conclusions are, but think that it gives them a blank cheque to dismiss anything in the NT documents which they find not to be to their liking. Well "higher criticism" is just a little bit more rigorous than that.
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01-03-2009, 09:56 PM
Post: #4
RE: Eternal Life does not exist
Well, now that we all know that eternal life doesn't exist, we can also conclude that Hitler and the sweet old lady across the street are perfectly annihilated and have no credentials built on their name, meaning that killing millions of Jews was pointless and being nice by giving cookies to children was also pointless in the struggle for ultimate survival which can hardly be maintained because of the presence of death. If God doesn't hold final judgment on humanity after death, then you can't really say death is fair or just because Hitler gets away with genocide and the sweet old lady across the street gets no reward for her kindhearted cookies. It goes against humanity's natural desire to see justice prevail, and it promotes all sorts of lifestyles, namely a materialistic one that is limited only to the selfish indulgences of lust, greed, graft, or sadism.
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01-04-2009, 05:35 AM
Post: #5
RE: Eternal Life does not exist
If you require a reward system to act beneficially towards other people than you seem to me a poor example of humanity. To claim that a lack of a system of supernatural rewards and punishments means that there is no purpose in trying to benefit others, or no cruelty in harming others goes against the very fabric of humanity, as a group of social animals whos strength is there cooperation and ability to develop.

my atheism is just like your religion
only i subtract 1 one more god
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01-04-2009, 06:13 AM
Post: #6
RE: Eternal Life does not exist
all from the heart m8.

Good evil salvation
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01-04-2009, 10:46 AM
Post: #7
RE: Eternal Life does not exist
If anticipation of reward (heaven) and punishment (hell), and maybe a panel video review of your life story with a flock of angels and saints after you die are the only reasons you behave properly, then please keep believing in eternal life. If your moral reasoning and internalization of ethics has risen beyond
Kohlberg stage 4 then you don't need to.
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01-04-2009, 11:22 AM
Post: #8
RE: Eternal Life does not exist
mmm lets trust kohlberg then,silly me it,s all so obvious now.

Good evil salvation
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01-04-2009, 03:07 PM
Post: #9
RE: Eternal Life does not exist
You say I seem like a poor example of humanity, yet here I am trying my best to do these great things for humanity like doing community service and helping people whenever I can. Basically what you're saying is that I'm an idiot and that my motivation to do good is in the wrong place, therefore I'm a poor asset to humanity...?

Anyways what I'm saying is that, if humans randomally appeared in the universe, live for a few short years, and then die completely, there is no reason to do anything at all. Sure we choose to be good to each other because, according to athos, we are naturally social creatures who only work with cooperation. I agree. But if you stop to think about the larger picture for a second instead of just looking at human achievement, you see that life is extremely short. Only a fool thinks that 75 years of life is long in comparison to the billions and billions of years the universe has existed, especially considering how death can come at any sudden moment. Perhaps it's diffucult to understand coming from my point of view, but I see that a random life that popped out of nowhere has no purpose besides temporarily filling up a small void of existance; there would ultimately be no need for good or bad, though we choose to acknowledge good and bad. The desire to cooperate does get us some progress, but I refuse to think that we made all of this progress exclusively on an evolutionary trait. If that were so, I wouldn't even know how to explain selfishness.
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01-04-2009, 04:27 PM
Post: #10
RE: Eternal Life does not exist
If the only reason someone does good things, like helping others, like behaving with morality and ethics, by being unselfish, is because they think they'll get a reward in the after life, or eternal torture in hell if they don't then they are actually just getting payment for a transaction. Carrot and stick. Low on the order of existence and Kohlberg's stages.

How about doing something right because it is right to do it. No anticipation of reward or punishment, just because you're human. If the world could see it this way, we might give a good goddamn about the 1000s of children and poor who will die today for want of clean water, a little medical attention and food. No, we'd rather think we're born again and have our tickets to heaven. Good to go and to hell with the disadvantaged.
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