This is a guest post by Gene Burmington. (Obligatory disclaimer: the views and opinions expressed below are the writer’s and do not necessarily reflect my own.)
Special Comment: Dang, now I almost feel guilty. But I respect my friend too much to coddle him with things I know are untrue, no matter how temporarily and cheaply reassuring they may appear to be. As Greta Christina once said, reality is a harsh mistress, but we must accept her in order to see just how magnificent she truly is, far more than any fantasy we can conjure to replace her.
|Not insofar as we can ascertain with science and human understanding|
This essay wasn't written for Christians, Hindu's, Buddhists, or Muslims: they have their beliefs and won't be shaken of them no matter what. Instead, this is for those others who are incredulous and don't know what to believe.
Ever since the owner of this blog came out with the facts of life on atheism, all my thoughts and pretenses have turned to shit. I mean, how can any sane person just simply accept an end to existence at death?
All the time, religion tries to consolidate our trust into these unproven farces of things that happen to us as we go through the beliefs and eventually our death.
But let's be realistic, if science has already proven that our minds work from electrical signals that can process things faster than computers, and that our personalities can suddenly CHANGE from brain damage, what hope do we have to believe in an afterlife if the proof leans toward our existence being tethered to a physical mass of flesh and combined learning experiences?
To be candid of truth, that's what everyone wants--a happy ending. From our fairy tales, to our religion, and even in massage parlors; people just want to pretend that everything's fine as long as someone or a respected system is stroking them, as George Carlin once said.
If it's all just white lies to make everyone happy and carefree, the systems of religions and theists have done a bang up job since everyone seems to prefer being lied to and receiving false hopes of a fictionalized afterlife.
Any rational person reading this must have believed at least some sort of afterlife was possible, as ghosts certainly exist. Unfortunately, how can someone say ghosts exist when many ghost stories are either determined to be superstitions, hoaxes, or contradictions such as in the cases of the movie "The haunting in Connecticut" which has a family living in the same house as the previous owners who cashed in on their "hauntings" while the later tenants claim no paranormal activity takes place.
Couple that with Poveglia island in Italy, where even cracked.com has reported to be severely haunted and scary. However, a ghost hunters team went to that location, and I doubt they picked up much more than the usual potpourri of old scary places.
Even as the Discovery Channel, SyFy and other shows glamorize the idea of hauntings and ghosts, it's quickly evident that a lot of special effects and editing take place to make the episode more interesting than it really is.
I suppose that any outrageous haunting stories should be carefully weighed, as most people have a tendency to lie their asses off to make a couple bucks off a gullible public like some supernatural snake oil salesman.
Once the last refuge of the afterlife; "ghosts" and "hauntings" is taken away from the rational mind, there is little more to accept than a life where a prolonged existence is ultimately impossible when compared to the inescapable facts.
While all of this depresses me and clouds my mind with horrible notions and ideas of worthlessness and pointlessness, I have only been recently inaugurated with their ramifications and hope to eventually recover from my shock like a gunshot victim, as Joé McKen has apparently hit me with a .50 cal that day and it still leaves me floored.
Floored with the five stages of death as evidenced with the giraffe on "Robot Chicken"; only it's going to be tougher since my candy of non-death un-finality has been taken away and I'm going through severe withdrawal symptoms.