Stop the Fear

tonyjeffers's picture

Stop the Fear

 

When I believed in God, I also feared death.  I no longer believe in God, and no longer do I fear death.

The fear of death is natural and as part of evolution has been necessary to the survival of species.  The human mind has evolved with cognition and self-awareness to realize this primitive function of the mind.

Hope for life after death, although delusional, is not completely irrational since no one knows for sure.  Hope can simply be a way for some to cope with the fear of death that they are unable to overcome and as a way to overcome despair.  Belief in life after death is however just as irrational as belief in God.   There is a difference between hope and belief.  Neither can be held true without the proof of fact.

This, of course, is not a new observation.  It is, however, a greatly ignored fact by those of faith.  Without the fear of God, the fear of death can be easily overcome and is a life-altering liberation.  Religion has always used this fear to its advantage.  Teachers of faith hone in on this natural fear to make their victims fear God.  Liberation of this fear of death is disguised as liberation of punishment of one’s sins through Jesus Christ and a false promise of eternal life.  They know all too well that without fear their yoke upon their slaves would be lost.

To put the fear of God in children is abuse with the force of a mental club.  To do the same to an adult is nothing more than an attempt to prey on the weak-minded. When it is used for the viscous cycle of financial gain by the church it becomes malicious and criminal.  Those who preach faith without financial gain can only be found guilty of ignorantly perpetuating lies and mentally abusing their children.  Mental abuse and preying on the weak minded is not excusable.  Why should the spreading of ignorance be?

If this process is not interrupted with the introduction of logic and reason, then it is allowed to perpetuate.  Therefore spreading Atheism is only the right thing to do. We must stop the perpetuation of ignorant religious beliefs which in turn feed the financial gain of the malicious and criminal religious power structure.

Since I overcame religion and my fear of death, there is no fear that I cannot overcome.  And so I am not afraid to share the logic and reason of Atheism with the world.

Set all fear aside and help others to overcome theirs.  Introduce them to logic and reason. 

"...but truth is a point of view, and so it is changeable. And to rule by fettering the mind through fear of punishment in another world is just as base as to use force." -Hypatia

digitalbeachbum's picture

I don't completely agree. I

I don't completely agree. I believe that the fear of death is overcome by the joy or love theists feel from their faith in a god. They believe that every thing will be "ok" and that "they will be visiting loved ones".

I have met numerous people though, theist and non-theist alike who fail to let go of loved ones after they pass. I worked for a service which consoled these people and I found it difficult to understand how a person could lose a loved one and then keep a shrine in one room of the house for the family member. They would treat them as if they were still alive. Talk about them in first person too.

I would ask these people, why are you so angry? Don't you believe in god? jesus? The reply would be "yes" and I would then say "shouldn't you be happy they are with god now?". Unfortunately their ego was too controlling and they were being selfish. They carried the pain as if they might forget their loved one.

I think what is disturbing is the lack of understanding of death in this country. We are the most "backassed" country when it comes to death. Several places I have visited such as Peru, China, Japan or even the American Indians had a much better understanding of death than we do. I've been to several funeral parlors when a family member passed and to listen to the sales rep you would think you were buying a new car.

I would love to have a sky burial when I pass, but apparently the laws here prevent my body from being butchered and then being fed to vultures.

 

 

Free will is an illusion. People always choose the perceived path of greatest pleasure.

-Scott Adams

Brian37's picture

I am only with the original

I am only with the original post in that hope for an afterlife is evolutionary, but on a very base level having nothing to do with knowing or not knowing if an after life exists. It is merely the placebo gap of not wanting to face our finite existence.

Thinking cannot occur without a material process, once the brain dies YOU DIE, much like once a car engine block blows up beyond repair the car cannot run any more. There is no after life. We only survive in the memories of those who survive us. This is the only life we get.

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
Check out my poetry here on Rational Responders Like my poetry thread on Facebook under BrianJames Rational Poet also on twitter under Brianrrs37

Sage_Override's picture

Faith provides

Faith provides reassurance FOR the unknown, not FROM it.  There is no safety net when it comes to buying the farm.  Religious people are insecure about a worldwide, innate paranoia about the hereafter and even some atheists fear that great gig in the sky, even with the absence of the divine.  Be as philisophical, religious or spiritual about the unknown as you want, but the end is when we'll all finally know and fear mongering others over it just creates hysteria and senseless preoccupation when we should all be focusing on helping each other out by providing a kick ass existance here for the best possible transition to being six feet under or in an urn or whatever plans you have when that time comes. 

"When the majority believes in what is false, the truth becomes a quest." - Me

digitalbeachbum's picture

Brian37 wrote:I am only with

Brian37 wrote:

I am only with the original post in that hope for an afterlife is evolutionary, but on a very base level having nothing to do with knowing or not knowing if an after life exists. It is merely the placebo gap of not wanting to face our finite existence.

Thinking cannot occur without a material process, once the brain dies YOU DIE, much like once a car engine block blows up beyond repair the car cannot run any more. There is no after life. We only survive in the memories of those who survive us. This is the only life we get.

You'll figure out soon enough. Just give it some time.

Free will is an illusion. People always choose the perceived path of greatest pleasure.

-Scott Adams

ax's picture

It will be interesting to

It will be interesting to see opinions on the matter when death becomes optional.

danatemporary's picture

(smile)

Quote:
I would love to have a sky burial when I pass, but apparently the laws here prevent my body from being butchered and then being fed to vultures.

   Tibetan Buddhist practice

Vastet's picture

I never had a belief in a

I never had a belief in a god. Once or twice as a child, I hoped, but never believed.
My fear of death is negligible. If directly confronted with it, I'll get the adrenaline rush any sane being will get, and fight or flight to survive as any sane being would. But I don't consider that a fear of death. More a basic desire to exist, and the will to try and do so.

I can't say that the idea of death has ever really scared me, but it's certainly affected me less with every passing year. I see no point in fearing something that is inevitable. Death just isn't all that important or productive. Living is.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.

Brian37's picture

Quote:There is no safety net

Quote:
There is no safety net when it comes to buying the farm.

NOT true, money equals power if you have the money you can buy the farm and every farm around it, kick the people off the land and build a Wal Mart so that Beyond Saving can earn money in the stocks.

Oh wait, you were talking about death, never mind.

I'M SORRY BEYOND I couldn't resist. It was toooooooo easy. (Waits for rotten tomatos)

 

 

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
Check out my poetry here on Rational Responders Like my poetry thread on Facebook under BrianJames Rational Poet also on twitter under Brianrrs37

Vastet's picture

What if your land becomes a

What if your land becomes a desert?

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.

tonyjeffers's picture

ax wrote:It will be

ax wrote:

It will be interesting to see opinions on the matter when death becomes optional.

That is a very intriguing remark, as I find you to be a very intriguing fellow.  When I read your text I put to it the sentient computer voice of "Hal 9000" from Stanley Kubrick's 2001 Space Odyssey.  "When death becomes optional?" huh?

Brian37 stated above that "when the brain dies, YOU die"  That's logical enough and I don't see how one could prove it wrong, but it also seems to have to qualify as a belief.  I have toiled with this thought.  What of the stories of those who were brought back from being brain dead for a short time? Some claim to have memories that we explain away as the prolonged firing of nerve endings or they are just making up bullshit(which is probably the case)  

Death as an option brought me to the thought of non-volatile memory.  If mankind manages to survive long enough, his limitations are truly unimaginable.  Relatively speaking it was not long ago that the mere thought of the computer I am typing on would have been laughed at.  Any logical person without prior knowledge of the internal workings of a computer would say that when you unplug it all memory must become lost.  We know differently from observation of volatile and non-volatile memory.  I cannot make an assertion about something I cannot fully grasp without observational evidence. I can only imagine.  For me to say that when my brain dies it is absolutely over seems presumptuous.  I believe it, but that does not make it a fact that can never be changed.

So if death becomes optional, or at least controllable, what will become of religion?  Surely the god of Abraham will finally be put to death.  I'm sure man will find a new twist and a new name for god.  I think "Hal" would be fitting.

"...but truth is a point of view, and so it is changeable. And to rule by fettering the mind through fear of punishment in another world is just as base as to use force." -Hypatia

Vastet's picture

Actually, the death of

Actually, the death of today's religions would almost certainly be delayed indefinitely. All those idiotic, morally bankrupt, lying evangelists would no longer shut up, because they'd no longer die off.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.

digitalbeachbum's picture

tonyjeffers wrote:So if

tonyjeffers wrote:

So if death becomes optional, or at least controllable, what will become of religion?  Surely the god of Abraham will finally be put to death.  I'm sure man will find a new twist and a new name for god.  I think "Hal" would be fitting.

If you had a thousand people be turned in to "borg" types so they would live for thousands and thousands of years, they would eventually stop believing in their religion. It happens. It is human nature.

I suspect that outside of scientific discovery, such as factual information, I would change my opinion many man times if I were a borg. Being religious is an opinion. It is no different than saying "I want an apple" one day, then wanting a orange the next.

 

Free will is an illusion. People always choose the perceived path of greatest pleasure.

-Scott Adams

ax's picture

re: tonyjeffersNDE's are

re: tonyjeffers


NDE's are interesting and difficult to debate. Mathematically I can account for the possibility of afterlife using a variety of interesting theories, but at the moment they all lay to rest within the imagination. For this reason, like you, I have chosen to place my bets elsewhere.

Unfortunately I do not yet have the computing power to test some of my own personal theories on nueroscience, but there are at least a growing number of teams worldwide working on brain mapping. To date, we know that cortical folding directly impacts intelligence and thoughts. Analysis of the brain structure of various mammals indicates varying degrees of intellectual ability directly related to these folds. These wrinkly storage mechanisms relate to a variety of brain functions, but memory itself (whether long term or short term) is a very complex function to dissect as it involves multiple areas; further evidence seems to indicate or at least support the possibility that it is structurally independent.

If this is true, then memory as an electrical state can exist outside your brain. Unfortunately this notion won't deviate the established soul searcher, but it can allow mind uploading to become a reality.

Once death becomes optional.. I think I would vote for Hal. Smiling

 

re: Vastet

I sure hope not. If mind uploading was a condition for immortality, I think many of them would opt out.

 

re: digitalbeachbum

Good point. Changing religion over time doesn't sound too bad to me.