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Old 04-23-2013, 03:33 PM
 
3,402 posts, read 4,332,166 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheHurricaneKid View Post
From fear of death, religion, the after life, and man's deception?

I've been through scary times. There are times when I get night mares from my life experiences and the only thing I can do is stay awake and reflect on my memories and my uncertainty.

I had a traumatic childhood. I can't really trust anyone close to me and I can't trust myself in the matters of religion and the uncertainty.

Is there any agnostic out there that has freed themselves from fear and uncertainty?
I think you would find people religious and not both afraid of death. I think those that don't fear it so much are those that have lived a full life regardless of their beliefs. I think fear comes from not feeling ready to leave yet rather than fear of whats next. For example, I think my 102 year old grandmother that had lost my grandfather years earlier was ready to go when the time came. She was never very religious, but had a life that never left her wanting for much. I had another grandmother that cried on her death bed that her life went bad as a young adult and never got better. Fear? Maybe.

Religion? I think I can safely say the nonreligious don't fear it or had already freed themselves from that.

About the afterlife I have no way to know what that is or if there even is one and I have more immediate problems that occupy my thoughts first. I don't waste my time with something I have no way of doing anything about. Uncertainty is part of life, and I accept that.

I would suggest that you allow your mind to think more happy thoughts. As dorky as that may sound please try it. You are telling us that you lay there in the dark and think about the terrible things that have happened in the past. None of them can be changed, but you can find more worthwhile things to do in the hours when you are awake and also choose who you associate with during those hours. If you don't have a good feeling about the people around you maybe it is time to look for new friends. There isn't one single human being on earth that knows the answers about god all and of that though there are plenty that will try to convince you they do. Just try to be the very best person you can and fill your time with people you do like and things you enjoy.
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Old 04-24-2013, 02:45 PM
 
Location: Ohio
20,101 posts, read 14,341,752 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheHurricaneKid View Post
Is there any agnostic out there that has freed themselves from fear and uncertainty?
Lots of people have freed themselves from your thoughts or similar thoughts.

To do that, you need to challenge your perceptions and views, and then alter the way you think.

Psychologically...

Mircea
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Old 04-24-2013, 02:49 PM
 
12,740 posts, read 10,040,161 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheHurricaneKid View Post
From fear of death, religion, the after life, and man's deception?

I've been through scary times. There are times when I get night mares from my life experiences and the only thing I can do is stay awake and reflect on my memories and my uncertainty.

I had a traumatic childhood. I can't really trust anyone close to me and I can't trust myself in the matters of religion and the uncertainty.

Is there any agnostic out there that has freed themselves from fear and uncertainty?
Mindfulness training. This author is good.

Amazon.com: Thich Nhat Hanh: Books, Biography, Blog, Audiobooks, Kindle
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Old 04-24-2013, 05:01 PM
 
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I think what you're afraid of is what will happen after death...is that correct? You're afraid of punishment?

Can you put this in perspective and realize that it's pretty much only Christianity that has this idea of eternal suffering after death? Much though it may seem from our cultural perspective, the whole world does not by any means feel this way. Even many Christians themselves don't feel this way. You grew up immersed in this belief system but that doesn't mean it's correct.
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Old 04-25-2013, 09:35 PM
 
278 posts, read 256,428 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheHurricaneKid View Post

Is there any agnostic out there that has freed themselves from fear and uncertainty?
What, I ask you, is there to fear about death? What uncertainty? You really shouldn't worry about any of that too much. It may be that when you are sick and old, it is a struggle to go on. You may, indeed, welcome the end.
Would you really want to live forever? Do you want to see all of your loved ones die before you? I don't.
I suggest living life to the fullest and doing the things you enjoy as much as you can. Cherish your friends and family. Spread the love.
Besides, non-existance isn't going to hurt you at all. You've been non-existant for most of the history of the universe. Are you any worse for wear because of it?
Let go of the fear. Be prepared for nothing in the after-life. Embrace the little bit of time you still have.
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Old 04-27-2013, 12:46 AM
 
Location: Sinking in the Great Salt Lake
13,144 posts, read 19,271,465 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheHurricaneKid View Post
From fear of death, religion, the after life, and man's deception?

I've been through scary times. There are times when I get night mares from my life experiences and the only thing I can do is stay awake and reflect on my memories and my uncertainty.

I had a traumatic childhood. I can't really trust anyone close to me and I can't trust myself in the matters of religion and the uncertainty.

Is there any agnostic out there that has freed themselves from fear and uncertainty?
Agnosticism is all about "going with the flow"; since fear and uncertainty are a natural part of life, you just need to learn to accept what was, accept that bad things will happen and work on being determined and skilled enough to deal with the problems as they come up.

That doesn't "free" you from fear and uncertainty but it gives you the confidence to overcome them.

As for death, I don't fear dying... I fear being on my deathbed and realizing I never really lived... that I wasted my time and talents and never lived up to my personal potential.
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Old 04-27-2013, 01:58 AM
 
39,708 posts, read 11,078,842 times
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Originally Posted by Chango View Post
...

As for death, I don't fear dying... I fear being on my deathbed and realizing I never really lived... that I wasted my time and talents and never lived up to my personal potential.
That's a good way of putting the reason for the claim (made by me while rather skipping over the reason why it matters ) that we should make the most of this life. It is a shame to waste something good and worthwhile. This life is an incredible gift. That some people trash ot or - worse - have it trashed for them by others, does not make it any the less so. It just shows how urgent it is for us to try to ensure that everyone gets a chance to make something of their lives.
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Old 04-28-2013, 10:40 AM
 
Location: Seattle bound
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This is going to sound strange, but it's hard to put into words so bear with me. I used to lie awake at night with the fear that if I fell asleep I'd never wake up and the me that is here and now would disappear forever, but if I just stayed awake it wouldn't happen. Then I realized that sleep, like death, is inevitable because I'd eventually fall asleep, and of course and I always woke up. So, I told myself that even if I never woke up, staying awake worrying about dying probably wouldn't stop death from coming so it was a useless thing to do. And voila! I stopped doing it.

Part of being an Agnostic (a big part of being an Agnostic in my book) is not knowing. I don't know what's going to happen to me after I die. I CAN'T know what's going to happen to me after I die because I haven't died yet. I know I'm going to die because everybody does. Well, even a small part of me doubts that because, who knows what happens to the part of me that makes me "Willow" after I die? I don't know. But this body I inhabit can't live forever, it's born to die. Inevitable. So, there's no use worrying about it, because I can't stop it. And fearing the unknown is useless otherwise I'd walk in fear every minute of every day because there is so much I don't know out there. So, I let it go and... what will be will be.

Sure, there are moments now and then where I realize that the "Willow" who is here and now will cease to exist as if she never was and I'm sad about that, but what can I do? Nothing. It's the way of life. It's nothing to be afraid of.

My childhood sucked rocks. I mean it was awful. But it's in the past. Without it, I wouldn't be who I am in the here and now. I don't know what the future will bring me so I don't worry about it. I can't change the past so I don't worry about it. Seriously? The way I've found to cope with the uncertainty of life is to accept that life is uncertain and live with it. Living in the now has been, for me, the best decision I've ever made.
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Old 04-28-2013, 08:30 PM
 
278 posts, read 256,428 times
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I would be pleasantly stunned if there is anything after death. I expect nothing. I would think otherwise if I could recall something/anything going on before I was conceived. Or of course, if there was anything to suggest otherwise. I suspect that death will bring an erasing of the brain and memories, much the same way a hard drive on a CPU can be erased. We see this when someone survives a traumatic brain injury. Often times people lose some motor functions, memories, and/or parts of their personality depending on which parts of the brain was injured during such events. Whatever it is that makes you- you, is stored in the brain in organic matter and when it dies, so does the person that was you.
I think the alternative would make for an interesting thought experiment though. Let's say, for the sake of argument, that there is no god after you die...(I know, a reach right?).... and yet, you find yourself in some other world, post mortem? What would it say about our universe?
Count on nothing, methinks.
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Old 04-29-2013, 09:11 AM
 
Location: Northeastern US
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteelDragon View Post
I would be pleasantly stunned if there is anything after death.
I would be unpleasantly stunned and deeply suspicious. Another unasked for existence? GREAT.

I have said many times that any afterlife would much more likely be "same (or worse!) s__t, different dimension" than some idealized form of earthly life that we humans tend to cook up in between our ears. This is all the more likely if there is no Orchestrator involved. I want no part of such a thing unless oblivion is somehow a clearly marked exit at my sole discretion. Since life is only accidentally at anything but cross-purposes to the sentient beings inhabiting it, beyond a certain point it becomes tiresome. One of the main reasons it's tolerable is that it has an end point. The idea of it going on and on in an open ended fashion -- or -- worse -- repeating over and over, Ground Hog Day-style, is something I don't care to contemplate.

It's a little like those poor folks trapped in the collapsed factory last week; I could stand being pinned in some wreckage for an hour or two, maybe a day or two, but eternity? Fugeddaboudit. Such disasters are nothing but a highly compressed version of life in general. Most of us are loathe to admit it, but we really don't want it to go on and on, not when we really think about it.
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