I am afraid of dying. I am afraid of the afterlife. And I am deathly afraid of the concept of eternity.
To have a serious thought about death is actually difficult. It’s almost impossible to focus on what happens in my afterlife, without flinching away the moment my mind settles on the fact that there can be only a few possibilities:
- It’s going to be an eternal loop of darkness after I die.
- It’s going to be an eternal loop of burning fire and suffering after I die.
- It’s going to be a reincarnation and I will be born into a possibly better second (or third, or fourth) life.
- It’s going to be spent in a place that’s called paradise, with God and many God-loving souls and angels, for eternity, and we will all be in great joy forever.
Pardon me if I fail to see the big picture. Because while all monotheistic religions promote the concept of a fantastic afterlife in Heaven if you are a believer, honestly, I can’t see the appeal. “Believe, and spend an eternal afterlife with God in Paradise.” Erm. But why would I want that? And do not try to tempt me with paradise, because I already established here and now that I can achieve contentment through simplicity. So trying to dangle paradise as a carrot for me to believe in a faith isn’t really a big deal.
I’m happy with now. I’m too overly contented with the life I’ve been given on this Earth that I’d rather stay where I am now than to have it all taken away from me and traded for eternal paradise.
But the truth is, what we have now is all temporary. Before everyone knows it, time is going to fly. Us young twentysomethings now will eventually achieve the perfect career status. And we’ll get married. Soon our Big Day will pass us by, and we’ll be done with Honeymoons and well-wishes, and soon, we’ll be having kids. And time will go by faster and soon we’ll be seeing our kids get married, have kids. Our grandkids. News flash: we are now past half our life. If we retire, we basically wait to die. And disease will eventually take over us thanks to our frequent abuse of nicotine and alcohol and too much sugar from back in our youthful days, and soon we’ll be lying on our deathbeds. And then what? We wait for the most dreaded moment: death. And the hysterically frightening reminder that we’re probably going to spend an eternity, an ETERNITY (yes, let that sink in), in the same old circumstance. Either nothingness, hell, or heaven.
I don’t want to die. I don’t want afterlife. I want to stay where I am. I love my low-paying job. I love my boyfriend. I love my family and friends. I don’t want all of this to go away.
This is why I’ve always hoped for reincarnations and second lives. Because I appreciate life on earth, and relationships and mundane trials and the feeling of being human.
There is nothing better than being alive and human and flawed and breathing and simple. Give me this forever. I don’t ever want eternal afterlife. God, help me if it’s all otherwise.