The belief that we persist after death in one form or another is most assuredly a survival mechanism. After all, that’s exactly what our nature tells us to do: survive. I think most people (irrespective of their religious beliefs) would agree on this point.
Our species is wired by nature to strive and endure whether the instinct is “god-given” or inherently part of our evolved nature. This is why we avoid and evade danger when we encounter or expect it, and when there’s no way or time to flee we fight to defend ourselves from destruction.
But what about the certain demise by those things we can’t always fight or flee from (like disease), or our eventual death by the unstoppable natural course of time? People naturally fear death – even a peaceful one. We don’t want to die but eventually we all will – yet our nature (again, god-given or inherent) compels us to survive.
So how do we cope with death and the finality of life? We serve ourselves a cocktail mixed with the fear of never seeing our loved ones again, detachment from reality and all common sense, and a wild imagination. Some people need a little more kick to preserve the fantasy, so we add a splash of profound fear of the wrath of an angry sky god who’s much like Santa in a weird sort of way.
Sing along with me people…
“He’s makin’ a list, he’s checkin’ it twice, he’s gonna find out who’s naughty or nice, angry god will send you to hell!”
If you think about it, isn’t the notion of eternal life patently silly? In fact, I think it’s downright cruel. Live forever? Who would really want to? If there ever was a literal hell (and I’m positive there isn’t), it would be the punishment of having to live forever even in a blissful place like heaven.
I mean, really think about it for a moment. Try to comprehend “forever.” It’s virtually incomprehensible. But to the extent that you can get your arms around the concept, imagine living forever. Is that supposed to be some kind of reward? “Being” forever sounds more like the worst punishment imaginable. Any thinking person would agree that life is most certainly long enough.
But here’s the catch. Christians won’t allow this kind of simple, reasonable logic to rain on their parade. They’ll argue that it doesn’t matter whether you like it or not. You’re doomed to “be” forever one way or another. Either accept their god, live by his rules here on earth and then forever live in the bliss of heaven – or burn for eternity in the torment of hell.
It’s your choice…if you can call that a choice. So make the only safe move and do what they tell you to do or you’re screwed…forever.
You were brought into this world by no choice of your own and now you’re being forced to play a game that you didn’t ask to play. And it’s the only game in town. It’s the cruelest of games with the harshest of penalties…INFINITE PUNISHMENT FOR FINITE SIN!
The Christian god is so truly fair and compassionate, isn’t he?
If it’s not crystal clear that the whole thing’s a farce, then perhaps you’re better off being kept in the dark anyway. Knowing the ultimate finality of life is too much of a burden for some people to bear.
The notion of eternal life is further debunked here.