My "Afterlife" Theory

Parallel
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My "Afterlife" Theory

The brain is really an amazing thing, we can create our world.

 

There's a set of time-keeping neurons in the brain that give us our perception of time. When you fall asleep these neurons turn off allowing your dreamland to be timeless hence the stories of year long lucid dreams. The idea is that when you die, or have a near death experience your pineal gland excretes an immense amount of the drug dimenthyltrypamine or DMT which is a psychedelic drug. Is it possible that before you die, DMT is released and your time-keeping neurons shut down causing a never ending dream?


"I do not think it is necessary to believe that the same God who has given us our senses, reason, and intelligence wished us to abandon their use, giving us by some other means the information that we could gain through them." ~Galileo Galilei


Atheistextremist
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Ummmmmm

Is that you, Luminon?

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Bill Shakey

 

 

 

         "......to die, to sleep; you exist no more. Yet in that sleep of death  what dreams may come once we have shuffled off our mortal coil?"

 

          Bill Shakey went on to describe the state of death has  ".....that undiscovered country from wence no traveler has yet returned".  I realy believe Shakey was a rational atheist.

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I think that's possible to a

I think that's possible to a certain extent. Our brains can be quite good at deceiving our perceptions of reality, and I've heard of stories where people felt like they spent years in alternate realities after taking strong hallucinogens. I'm hesitant to support the idea of a "never ending" dream though, for obvious reasons.

Parallel wrote:
Imagine how awkward it would be if your fly were unzipped in space...

Huh? 

It should feel the same as on Earth, unless you mean that it was actually exposed to outer space. If that happened, it wouldn't be "awkward;" you would die almost instantly. 

 

Our revels now are ended. These our actors, | As I foretold you, were all spirits, and | Are melted into air, into thin air; | And, like the baseless fabric of this vision, | The cloud-capped towers, the gorgeous palaces, | The solemn temples, the great globe itself, - Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve, | And, like this insubstantial pageant faded, | Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff | As dreams are made on, and our little life | Is rounded with a sleep. - Shakespeare


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Atheistextremist wrote:Is

Atheistextremist wrote:

Is that you, Luminon?

No, I'm that guy with a theory of multi-dimensional human being, where consciousness during sleep or death shifts into another "body", less physical and ghost-like. Unfortunately, there is usually an uncompatibility of memories between this existence and physical body.

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To dream requires changing

To dream requires changing brain states. To change requires time. Although someone with inactive time-keeping neurons may not be able to *keep track of* time, time still passes inexorably. Without time, there is no change. Without change, there is no dream. Our *perception* of time is not the key. The key is that time is independent of our perceptions of it.

When you die, you might experience a dream-like state of perceived timelessness during the short time that your brain is still alive and infused with DMT. However, that state of 'timelessness' is not outside of time. It begins and ends. It begins with the DMT and ends with brain death. After brain death, the dream does not continue.

DMT may change your perception of time, but it does not change time itself. Consider that a DMT high ends when the drug is metabolized out of your system. When you look at your watch, time has clearly passed during this high. It is only the perception that was changed.

When you die, your brain dies. When your brain dies, there is no longer perception.

So, no, there is no afterlife. After life is death. That's kind of the definition of death, 'after life'.

The closest idea I've heard that makes any sense of a 'life' after death is the idea that the ideas and legacies and memories we leave behind with other people will remain in the world long after our biological bodies, and brains, die. But this is not what most people think of when they talk about 'life' after death.

The second best (only because it doesn't yet exist. When it exists, it will be the best) idea I've heard is that one day we may be able to scan our brains and create conscious machine-intelligences based on our original biological minds. This machine-mind would be a 'mental clone' of you, with all of your memories, beliefs, emotions, personality, etc. It would just be in an artificial body, rather than your original biological one. Being a 'software' mind, it could theoretically be transferred from one body to the next, essentially achieving practical immortality.

But it will always require a functioning body. Software doesn't function without hardware.

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Interesting theory. But when

Interesting theory. But when your brain is dead you wont even be able to have these dreams right? So wouldn't the dream only last as long as your brain is still active?


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Big E wrote:Interesting

Big E wrote:

Interesting theory. But when your brain is dead you wont even be able to have these dreams right? So wouldn't the dream only last as long as your brain is still active?

Yes, but the point was that your brain can trick you into thinking that it's a lot longer than it actually is.  

 

Our revels now are ended. These our actors, | As I foretold you, were all spirits, and | Are melted into air, into thin air; | And, like the baseless fabric of this vision, | The cloud-capped towers, the gorgeous palaces, | The solemn temples, the great globe itself, - Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve, | And, like this insubstantial pageant faded, | Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff | As dreams are made on, and our little life | Is rounded with a sleep. - Shakespeare


Atheistextremist
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Ok, so I'm being flippant here

 

Parallel wrote:

your pineal gland excretes an immense amount of the drug dimenthyltrypamine or DMT which is a psychedelic drug. Is it possible that before you die, DMT is released and your time-keeping neurons shut down causing a never ending dream?

 

But I used to have this exact experience on Friday afternoons at boarding school. Right after lunch we had double science and I'm not sure if it was dimenthyltrypamine or just too many honey and vegemite sandwiches but that double period of endoplasmic reticula, plate tectonics, igneous extrusions, metamorphic dykes, refraction and seething chunks of phosphorous was simply interminable. I'm not sure if it was worse than dad's easter sermons. They were like watching the original 300 spartans in black and white for the 20th time with the sound off. Who could tell what would happen next? 

Oddly enough all that science sounds quite interesting to me now...maybe it was just being stuck in a chair for an hour and 3 quarters listening to Mr Pike droning on....

 

 

 

"Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination." Max Planck


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Well yeah, if you look at it

Well yeah, if you look at it that way, but the original poster said never endijng, so that's what I was reffering to.


Parallel
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Sorry about my delay in

Sorry about my delay in posting again, I just haven't been looking at the site haha.

 

So anyway I read all the posts and they all have good arguments, and come to think of it a never ending dream does actually seem a bit silly due to reasons stated by natural. Now my question is: why is DMT released before you die?

Now my original point was that if you have no perception of time a dream can last an infinite amount of time, but in reality infinity can't exist. How many people do you see going around saying "So yeah! I just had a dream that lasted for infinity! Awesome!"? That's almost paradoxical.

So I'm just going to change the discussion in this thread a bit to what I said earlier:

 

What could be the purpose of the psychedelic drug dimenthyltrypamine within the brain and why does it only come out before you die?

For that debate I think maybe it's the brain's way of accepting death when it's inevitable, similar to how endorphins are released when you receive pain. It could also be for the same reason too; to make things easier on the victim.

 

butterbattle wrote:
Parallel wrote:
Imagine how awkward it would be if your fly were unzipped in space...

Huh? 

It should feel the same as on Earth, unless you mean that it was actually exposed to outer space. If that happened, it wouldn't be "awkward;" you would die almost instantly. 


"I do not think it is necessary to believe that the same God who has given us our senses, reason, and intelligence wished us to abandon their use, giving us by some other means the information that we could gain through them." ~Galileo Galilei


Wonderist
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Parallel wrote:What could be

Parallel wrote:

What could be the purpose of the psychedelic drug dimenthyltrypamine within the brain and why does it only come out before you die?

First, I'm not sure if that is actually true. I have heard that claim before, but I have not heard of any actual brain science that supports that claim with evidence. It could simply be one of those random claims made by people who take drug experiences too seriously, like, "Whoah! This must be what it's like to almost die! Cool, dude. I bet the brain releases a whole shitload of DMT just before you die! That would give you an infinite dream. Whoah! I think I just figured out what the afterlife is!"

So, you might want to investigate that claim to see if it's actually true.

Second, even if it is true, it is not terribly surprising. Assuming that the brain uses DMT naturally as a brain chemical, then obviously there must be a store of DMT in the cell vacuoles of the neurons, as this is how such chemicals and neurotransmitters are stored for usage. A vacuole is like a little bubble or packet inside the cell which stores a chemical or some food for the cell.

When the brain is in the process of dying, it desperately tries all sorts of things to stay alive. It is not surprising to imagine that in its last throes of desperation, it starts to randomly release its stores of neurotransmitters and other brain chemicals. Kind of like, "Well, me Matey, if we're going to die, we might as well go out fighting. Ramming speed! Fire all cannons!"

Even if this is not the reason, there is a final reason which still makes it unsurprising. The brain is dying. When cells die, they self-destruct. There are special organelles called lysosomes which contain highly destructive enzymes, usually used for digestion of food. A cell which triggers its self-destruct mechanism, which is called apoptosis, ruptures its lysosomes, which releases the enzymes, and the enzymes proceed to destroy the cell from the inside out. Such destroyed cells basically release all their contents into the surrounding intercellular space. If DMT is such a powerful chemical that it only takes a little bit to cause a high, which I seem to recall is the case, then it would only take a small proportion of cell deaths to trigger a 'massive' (relatively speaking) DMT infusion.

So, either a) it's a myth, b) the brain is freaking out and desperate, or c) the brain is actually in the process of self-destructing and consequently releasing its stores of DMT.

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Parallel
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I see what you're

I see what you're saying.

 

Wikipedia wrote:
Dr. Rick Strassman, while conducting DMT research in the 1990s at the University of New Mexico, advanced the theory that a massive release of DMT from the pineal gland prior to death or near death was the cause of the near death experience (NDE) phenomenon. Several of his test subjects reported NDE-like audio or visual hallucinations. His explanation for this was the possible lack of panic involved in the clinical setting and possible dosage differences between those administered and those encountered in actual NDE cases. Several subjects also reported contact with 'other beings', alien like, insectoid or reptilian in nature, in highly advanced technological environments[20] where the subjects were 'carried', 'probed', 'tested', 'manipulated', 'dismembered', 'taught', 'loved' and even 'raped' by these 'beings'.

So we don't know for sure if there's DMT in the pineal gland, however if it is, your other answers don't answer why it's in the brain, they only answer how it can happen.

natural wrote:
When the brain is in the process of dying, it desperately tries all sorts of things to stay alive. It is not surprising to imagine that in its last throes of desperation, it starts to randomly release its stores of neurotransmitters and other brain chemicals. Kind of like, "Well, me Matey, if we're going to die, we might as well go out fighting. Ramming speed! Fire all cannons!"

• Yes, true in an attempt to save the being it might desperately toss out some DMT, but why DMT, in what way is it going to save the being? If there is DMT within the brain and it took us so long to figure it out it's likely because it hasn't done anything to make itself apparent, it would just lie dormant and get the person on a psycho-trip in order to... save themself? But then again I am jumping the gun a bit with that statement.

natural wrote:
Even if this is not the reason, there is a final reason which still makes it unsurprising. The brain is dying. When cells die, they self-destruct. There are special organelles called lysosomes which contain highly destructive enzymes, usually used for digestion of food. A cell which triggers its self-destruct mechanism, which is called apoptosis, ruptures its lysosomes, which releases the enzymes, and the enzymes proceed to destroy the cell from the inside out. Such destroyed cells basically release all their contents into the surrounding intercellular space. If DMT is such a powerful chemical that it only takes a little bit to cause a high, which I seem to recall is the case, then it would only take a small proportion of cell deaths to trigger a 'massive' (relatively speaking) DMT infusion.

• Again, likely, although this still doesn't give DMT a purpose.

 

Just for the record; the pineal gland produces the hormone melatonin which regulates our wake/sleep patterns along with our seasonal functions.

 

 


"I do not think it is necessary to believe that the same God who has given us our senses, reason, and intelligence wished us to abandon their use, giving us by some other means the information that we could gain through them." ~Galileo Galilei


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If you want to postulate

If you want to postulate "shit happens", there is no need to conflate "shit happens" to anything more than "shit happens".

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