Philosophical Questions About NDEs and the Concept of Life After Death in General

#1
Just so we are clear: I have no doubt on the validity of NDEs as authentic experiences. There is, however, a few things about them that have been philosophically puzzling to me. So I understand that the majority of people who undergo an NDE say that life is all about learning to love one another as oneself. I really like that idea, no doubt, but something has always remained elusive to me: if life is like a game where if you fail to accomplish the goal of whatever it is that you set out to do and have to start over again at the beginning, does it really make sense to lose all your memories of the life you had before? What good does that honestly do you? Why perpetuate the illusion of this being your only life as a separate entity living a separate experience? Why not give everyone the perception of NDErs where they can see the effects of their actions play out on every single person in their life in real time? Surely, the world would be a far different place if that were so. Perpetuating this illusion seems more fear-provoking than loving if you ask me.

The other philosophical question of NDEs is concerned with the concept of the meaning of life. If life does have an intrinsic meaning, does that mean that we are no longer able to choose our own? When people are told that they have to go back, where does that leave the concept of free will? If God or whatever the thing is that makes up the matrix of existence has a plan for everyone, then surely, there is no such thing as free will, as the nihilists would argue anyway? And I don't necessarily understand the whole plan thing: so say a child dies in the first year of birth, what exactly was supposed to be its plan? It's so young that it doesn't even have any conception of anything other than its senses. How can it have a plan? What about the plan for a mass murderer who kills 86 people? How does he/she play into the whole love thing? I just don't get it.

These are all very confusing questions to me, and I don't expect them to be answered anytime soon.
 
#2
To be perfectly honest the whole system claimed has always puzzled me.
I have this image of a God or some super intelligent energy system as an eccentric scientist experimenting on animals - us in particular.
We're like little creatures he arranged to be put on increasingly hot plates which cause us pain as we dance about with burning feet - but we learn something from it allegedly but are never sure how to avoid the next torture.
Maybe I'm just having a bad day...….
 
#3
Just so we are clear: I have no doubt on the validity of NDEs as authentic experiences. There is, however, a few things about them that have been philosophically puzzling to me. So I understand that the majority of people who undergo an NDE say that life is all about learning to love one another as oneself.
Love is a common theme, but also NDErs sometimes have different messages and it is important to examine each case and try to see if their lesson is for them alone or for everyone or for some people in a similar situation. For example Anita Moorjani said her lesson was "be true to yourself". She was so busy trying to please everyone around her she had no time for herself and she got sick and almost died. Her lesson is not for everyone. Some people only think about themselves and need the opposite message: think about other people once in a while.

I really like that idea, no doubt, but something has always remained elusive to me: if life is like a game where if you fail to accomplish the goal of whatever it is that you set out to do and have to start over again at the beginning, does it really make sense to lose all your memories of the life you had before? What good does that honestly do you?
You have some intuitions in your subconscious mind and influences from your spirit guides (that must people assume are their own thoughts) so you are not really completely in the dark. People learn best through experience. If you could look up the answers to life's problems you would not learn them in the same way. You might do the same thing but you wouldn't be doing it because you weighed the options and made your own decision. You wouldn't have the same understanding of other people in similar situations and why they might have done what they did. And we learn from mistakes. Sometimes the most important things we learn are from mistakes.

Why perpetuate the illusion of this being your only life as a separate entity living a separate experience?
If the earth life was like life in the spirit world, we wouldn't need to come here to earth in the first place.
Why not give everyone the perception of NDErs where they can see the effects of their actions play out on every single person in their life in real time? Surely, the world would be a far different place if that were so. Perpetuating this illusion seems more fear-provoking than loving if you ask me.
If the earth life was like life in the spirit world, we wouldn't need to come here to earth in the first place.
The other philosophical question of NDEs is concerned with the concept of the meaning of life. If life does have an intrinsic meaning, does that mean that we are no longer able to choose our own? When people are told that they have to go back, where does that leave the concept of free will?
The way I understand it is that as spirits we choose on a body and make plan for our life in it before we incarnate. So when people are told to go back, even though they don't remember it, they are being helped to fulfill the plan they selected for themselves.
If God or whatever the thing is that makes up the matrix of existence has a plan for everyone, then surely, there is no such thing as free will, as the nihilists would argue anyway? And I don't necessarily understand the whole plan thing: so say a child dies in the first year of birth, what exactly was supposed to be its plan?
This is totally hypothetical so no one should take this personally, or feel like I am saying misfortune is always the victims fault but one reason could be to help a parent learn about grief, maybe so they will have empathy for others who are grieving, maybe in a previous life they lacked empathy for someone and want to understand what it is like for themselves. In this case a spirit friend would agree to be their child and die young so they could get the experience they are seeking.
It's so young that it doesn't even have any conception of anything other than its senses. How can it have a plan? What about the plan for a mass murderer who kills 86 people? How does he/she play into the whole love thing? I just don't get it.
I don't think everything is planned to the last detail. It is more like a syllabus where the lessons are set out but what happens is left to the student to study or ignore as they see fit.
These are all very confusing questions to me, and I don't expect them to be answered anytime soon.
 
#4
The purpose of the earth life is a great mystery because we don't understand what it is preparing us for in the higher levels of the afterlife. All we know is the physical world. What if there are other realms totally different but where emotions and thoughts exist? Maybe our experiences here are the best possible preparation even though we can't imagine what we are preparing for.

When I had to learn the multiplication tables, I knew nothing of calculus. I had to learn the multiplication tables so I could learn other mathematics that I needed to learn first before I could understand calculus.

What we learn from life might not be an end in itself but lessons that allow us to learn further lessons etc etc which eventually does reach something meaningful in itself.
 
#5
I really like that idea, no doubt, but something has always remained elusive to me: if life is like a game where if you fail to accomplish the goal of whatever it is that you set out to do and have to start over again at the beginning, does it really make sense to lose all your memories of the life you had before? What good does that honestly do you?
OK - Wow TS you have the best posts.;;/?

I actually had an elaborate dream about 12 years ago, wherein a being came to me and asked if I 'had any questions'. I asked a very similar question to the one you pose here TS, to the being in the dream.

The Answer that He Gave Me: Skin in the Game

A video game player will not give 100%, not truly consider the results of his actions, not buy the ensuing lessons - not build integrity and quality of skills/awareness, not understand their true capability - nor even really play the game seriously - no matter how disciplined he believes himself to be in this regard. At all times his skin in the game is compromised, because he still has awareness that he is playing a temporary scenario and can start again. The being then showed me a baby being brought to its mother's breast in a delivery ward, to suckle, With each suck, its memory of everything that had transpired, apart from that innocent and discrete foundational birth moment, was erased from its memory.

He then showed me two identical red brick dwellings/homes - one in which all the bricks were authentic and one in which ~40% of the bricks were forged by means of a lesser recipe (memory was retained, help was given, the kiln-brick-maker was not disciplined nor fully caring) - one which bore resemblances to making a brick (by appearance) - but also one in which the brick bore microscopic flaws originating from a process whereby the brick maker was not making bricks with 'Skin in the Game' Literally, a DNA-based sack of bones and skin. This latter house eventually collapsed under its own weight, as the bricks were expertly lain by a talented structure mason. It can take 24 hours of abject suffering, or a lifetime of family and joy - the brick is forged by a variety of differing means. We are to make the bricks, and the mason builds the house for us. But our job is the bricks - 100% of them authentic, fire hardened, bricks. The more we cheat, the less we care, the more we hide from it - the longer this process of suffering takes.

I was then shown the 'lifeguards'. I was a lifeguard all through college, and the being said 'I am using a lifeguard imagery, because that is what you understand'. OK, I bought this, with a touch of indignance (surely I am not that stupid... LOL!!)

We are tossed into a hell of sorts - like being thrown into a pool or prison, with elaborately decorated bars/cells. It is not their job to assist us, inform us, nor intervene for 'goodness' sake'- we are there to learn to sink or swim - learn about suffering, cause and effect - and as well we face the uncertainty of chaos-to-suffering. We are told 'You may even die at 8 months old and suffer horribly, we cannot intervene - for in doing so, we begin to assume that we know Good, of our own discretion and enforcement ability. It is not that such actions are exclusively forbidden, rather it has to be part of our helping you forge your own brick with complete integrity. And we learn after the stacking of many bricks - that while this intervention on your behalf sounds miraculous, merciful and angelic, while you are in the suffering, it does not serve to build a true-professional brick, nor eventual sturdy dwelling.
 
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#6
OK - Wow TS you have the best posts.;;/?

I actually had an elaborate dream about 12 years ago, wherein a being came to me and asked if I 'had any questions'. I asked a very similar question to the one you pose here TS, to the being in the dream.

The Answer that He Gave Me: Skin in the Game

A video game player will not give 100%, not truly consider the results of his actions, not buy the ensuing lessons - not build integrity and quality of skills/awareness, not understand their true capability - nor even really play the game seriously - no matter how disciplined he believes himself to be in this regard. At all times his skin in the game is compromised, because he still has awareness that he is playing a temporary scenario and can start again. The being then showed me a baby being brought to its mother's breast in a delivery ward, to suckle, With each suck, its memory of everything that had transpired, apart from that innocent and discrete foundational birth moment, was erased from its memory.

He then showed me two identical red brick dwellings/homes - one in which all the bricks were authentic and one in which ~40% of the bricks were forged by means of a lesser recipe (memory was retained, help was given, the kiln-brick-maker was not disciplined nor fully caring) - one which bore resemblances to making a brick (by appearance) - but also one in which the brick bore microscopic flaws originating from a process whereby the brick maker was not making bricks with 'Skin in the Game' Literally, a DNA-based sack of bones and skin. This latter house eventually collapsed under its own weight, as the bricks were expertly lain by a talented structure mason. It can take 24 hours of abject suffering, or a lifetime of family and joy - the brick is forged by a variety of differing means. We are to make the bricks, and the mason builds the house for us. But our job is the bricks - 100% of them authentic, fire hardened, bricks. The more we cheat, the less we care, the more we hide from it - the longer this process of suffering takes.

I was then shown the 'lifeguards'. I was a lifeguard all through college, and the being said 'I am using a lifeguard imagery, because that is what you understand'. OK, I bought this, with a touch of indignance (surely I am not that stupid... LOL!!)

We are tossed into a hell of sorts - like being thrown into a pool or prison, with elaborately decorated bars/cells. It is not their job to assist us, inform us, nor intervene for 'goodness' sake'- we are there to learn to sink or swim - learn about suffering, cause and effect - and as well we face the uncertainty of chaos-to-suffering. We are told 'You may even die at 8 months old and suffer horribly, we cannot intervene - for in doing so, we begin to assume that we know Good, of our own discretion and enforcement ability. It is not that such actions are exclusively forbidden, rather it has to be part of our helping you forge your own brick with complete integrity. And we learn after the stacking of many bricks - that while this intervention on your behalf sounds miraculous, merciful and angelic, while you are in the suffering, it does not serve to build a true-professional brick, nor eventual sturdy dwelling.
incredible... thx for sharing this.
 
#7
Just so we are clear: I have no doubt on the validity of NDEs as authentic experiences. There is, however, a few things about them that have been philosophically puzzling to me. So I understand that the majority of people who undergo an NDE say that life is all about learning to love one another as oneself. I really like that idea, no doubt, but something has always remained elusive to me: if life is like a game where if you fail to accomplish the goal of whatever it is that you set out to do and have to start over again at the beginning, does it really make sense to lose all your memories of the life you had before? What good does that honestly do you? Why perpetuate the illusion of this being your only life as a separate entity living a separate experience? Why not give everyone the perception of NDErs where they can see the effects of their actions play out on every single person in their life in real time? Surely, the world would be a far different place if that were so. Perpetuating this illusion seems more fear-provoking than loving if you ask me.

The other philosophical question of NDEs is concerned with the concept of the meaning of life. If life does have an intrinsic meaning, does that mean that we are no longer able to choose our own? When people are told that they have to go back, where does that leave the concept of free will? If God or whatever the thing is that makes up the matrix of existence has a plan for everyone, then surely, there is no such thing as free will, as the nihilists would argue anyway? And I don't necessarily understand the whole plan thing: so say a child dies in the first year of birth, what exactly was supposed to be its plan? It's so young that it doesn't even have any conception of anything other than its senses. How can it have a plan? What about the plan for a mass murderer who kills 86 people? How does he/she play into the whole love thing? I just don't get it.

These are all very confusing questions to me, and I don't expect them to be answered anytime soon.
I always think back to what Raymond Moody told me about the inadequacy of our system of logic. maybe the kind of questions yr asking can't be answered from our earthly, biological robot perspective :)
 
#8
TruthSeeker,

I think my impression of (at least one version of) the larger structure of our total-lives, is that a part of us does retain all the memories, but that actually entering a new life with all the knowledge gained from the previous one, would be a bit like doing a maths exam where most of the questions were ones you had already solved!

That said, I find the real meaning of it all is pretty elusive, and it may be hard to comprehend anyway because we are focused on a 3-D reality with one time axis.

David
 
#9
Just so we are clear: I have no doubt on the validity of NDEs as authentic experiences. There is, however, a few things about them that have been philosophically puzzling to me. So I understand that the majority of people who undergo an NDE say that life is all about learning to love one another as oneself. I really like that idea, no doubt, but something has always remained elusive to me: if life is like a game where if you fail to accomplish the goal of whatever it is that you set out to do and have to start over again at the beginning, does it really make sense to lose all your memories of the life you had before? What good does that honestly do you? Why perpetuate the illusion of this being your only life as a separate entity living a separate experience? Why not give everyone the perception of NDErs where they can see the effects of their actions play out on every single person in their life in real time? Surely, the world would be a far different place if that were so. Perpetuating this illusion seems more fear-provoking than loving if you ask me.

The other philosophical question of NDEs is concerned with the concept of the meaning of life. If life does have an intrinsic meaning, does that mean that we are no longer able to choose our own? When people are told that they have to go back, where does that leave the concept of free will? If God or whatever the thing is that makes up the matrix of existence has a plan for everyone, then surely, there is no such thing as free will, as the nihilists would argue anyway? And I don't necessarily understand the whole plan thing: so say a child dies in the first year of birth, what exactly was supposed to be its plan? It's so young that it doesn't even have any conception of anything other than its senses. How can it have a plan? What about the plan for a mass murderer who kills 86 people? How does he/she play into the whole love thing? I just don't get it.

These are all very confusing questions to me, and I don't expect them to be answered anytime soon.
Perhaps Alex could invite someone with NDE experience- like Anita Moorjani, for a podcast interview.
 
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