CreateDebate


Debate Info

Debate Score:33
Arguments:24
Total Votes:33
More Stats

Argument Ratio

side graph
 
 Thoughts of a Dying Atheist ..? (24)

Debate Creator

JakeJ(3254) pic



Thoughts of a Dying Atheist ..?

Atheists (if I'm not mistaken) believe that when they die, ..that's it. So atheists tell me, what do you think about death? The thought of ceasing to exist forever. Are you afraid to die? 

Add New Argument
4 points

It bothered me when I was younger. When I was like ten, I remember the thought of death just made me feel kind of cold inside. But over time I came to see that fearing your own death is a very ego-centric way of looking at things. Who cares what happens to me? I'm just one person in this tumultuous sea of life. Just a temporary configuration of atoms and energy. When I am gone my atoms will disperse and recombine. As long as life perseveres, I will be content. In the words of Carl Sagan, we are all just a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam. Or in the words of Mary Elizabeth Frye:

Do not stand at my grave and weep,

I am not there, I do not sleep.

I am in a thousand winds that blow,

I am the softly falling snow.

I am the gentle showers of rain,

I am the fields of ripening grain.

I am in the morning hush,

I am in the graceful rush

Of beautiful birds in circling flight,

I am the starshine of the night.

I am in the flowers that bloom,

I am in a quiet room.

I am in the birds that sing,

I am in each lovely thing.

Do not stand at my grave and cry,

I am not there. I do not die.

Side: Do not stand at my grave and weep
3 points

As an agnostic, I have a very atheistic stance on what happens post death. Energy can neither be created nor destroyed. Thus, after death, the deceased continues as an everlasting part of the universe. I don't speak about consciousness. I don't know what happens to consciousness. What I do know is that the energy never leaves this universe. It probably doesn't even leave this local area (by local, I'm talking about the solar system). It is a part of everything. It transforms into the energy which runs this planet, it gives life to new organisms. I think that's pretty awesome.

Side: Do not stand at my grave and weep
2 points

I'm no atheist, but I will state that it may be narrow-minded to claim that our conciousness ceases to exist after our passing.

Side: Do not stand at my grave and weep
1 point

"it may be narrow-minded to claim that our conciousness ceases to exist after our passing"

I wasn't trying to claim that. I was just trying to explain the beliefs of somebody who doesn't believe in an afterlife. Because that's what they think, though not all atheists have that belief.

Side: Do not stand at my grave and weep
1 point

I was not assuming that was your belief. I apologise if it appeared so.

-

Further thoughts: I disagree with the christian afterlife because its simply boring. I'd take Valhalla anyday. Also, when I stop and think about my own existence, i feel something eternal, something primal, and something trancendant: which is why it is hard for me to deny the notion of a soul.

Side: Do not stand at my grave and weep
2 points

"Atheists (if I'm not mistaken) believe that when they die, ..that's it."

This is generally true, but not necessarily true. Being an atheist just means you don't believe in god. You can not believe in god and still believe in some sort of afterlife or reincarnation. You could also theoretically believe in god and not believe in an afterlife. However I will answer the question because I am an atheist who does not believe in afterlife. First of all the concept of death seems surreal and abstract so it's hard to say exactly how I feel about it. Obviously I don't want to die and if I could would want to live on forever. However dying doesn't seem bad, or even god for that matter because your consciousness doesn't exist to think about your circumstances. The way I conceptualize life and death is that life is like a vacation. Yes the vacation will eventually end so you could say what's the point of even trying to enjoy it if it won't last. But that isn't what people do. They make the most of it and try to have the best time possible and forget that the experience will not last.

Side: Do not stand at my grave and weep
2 points

"Here lies an Atheist,

All dressed up

With nowhere to go"

Side: Do not stand at my grave and weep

I hear that hell is nice this time of year. I wonder if he will like it.

Side: Do not stand at my grave and weep
JayAr(182) Disputed
1 point

Checkmate this is where we would most likely go if we committed no sin... I would rather like being in the presence of such people.

If you want to read the thing in its entirety clicky clicky PDF warning...

Side: Do not stand at my grave and weep

I enjoy life, and would like to continue living it for a good while, but death does not scare me. My knowledge of death's inevitability does inspire me to take advantage of the limited time I do have alive. I hope that at the time of my death I can be happy about my contribution to the world, and can say that I took advantage of the oppurtunities presented to me, however after my death I will not care because I will cease to be (well I guess I'd still be a body, but I certainly wouldn't still exist in any meaningful way).

Side: take advantage of limited time alive
1 point

I'm no atheist but neither do I find any comfort in the fantasies of an after-life. Not that I need comforting.

It is found that most people are not afraid so much of death as they are about how they may die. For example, people fear having a painful death, either suddenly in an accident, or after a prolonged illness.

The studies of near-death experiences and the observations of people attending someone's death say that the experience is generally joyful, peaceful and serene. When with someone who is dying, you should also seek to experience that peace, so as to not cause the dying person any unnecessary anxiety.

Studies of the brains of people who have had near-death experiences find that they have the same kind of brain-wave activity as the brains of Catholic nuns and Buddhist monks who have extensive experience in prayer and meditation. [1]

Even an atheist can meditate. The practice requires no belief in god/desses.

Prayer and meditation might be a good practice for anyone who will someday be experiencing death, which is to say, all of us.

[1] http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=104397005

Side: take advantage of limited time alive
1 point

In many cases theyre probably thinking something to the theme of "oh shit i've been shot owwww this hurts, am i going to die? I hope my will is up to date, and my family better throw a damned good funeral"

Side: take advantage of limited time alive
1 point

Just because God doesn't exist doesn't negate the possibility of an afterlife. The concept of a ghost or spirit could be strictly biological.

Side: Do not stand at my grave and weep

I think of death constantly. I'm almost consumed by it. I have no fear of dying, only of not living. I'm envious of those who are at peace with their own mortality. I can't understand it though (assuming they enjoy life). To me that would be like lying down at night and thinking, "I don't give a shit if I wake up tomorrow".

Side: Do not stand at my grave and weep

To me that would be like lying down at night and thinking, "I don't give a shit if I wake up tomorrow".

The trick is to instead think "I won't give a shit if I don't wake up tomorrow".

Side: Do not stand at my grave and weep

I know this is true and yet I struggle with it. I was perfectly content with not waking up once in almost 14 billion years, but the thought of returning to that state fills me with dread.

Perhaps I need a support group.

Side: Do not stand at my grave and weep
1 point

I think of death constantly. I'm almost consumed by it. I have no fear of dying, only of not living. I'm envious of those who are at peace with their own mortality. I can't understand it though (assuming they enjoy life). To me that would be like lying down at night and thinking, "I don't give a shit if I wake up tomorrow".

I can empathise with this. It's frankly disturbing to know that at some point in the future you will cease to be.

I guess the only way to deal with it is to accept it, and put it out of your mind somehow. Focus on things other than the end of life.

Side: Do not stand at my grave and weep

I don't believe in an after life and I am not afraid to die. it's inevitable.

Statistically speaking, people are more afraid of spiders then death.

Side: Do not stand at my grave and weep

What is the point of worrying about entering a state which negates all worry? Living is a far more difficult experience than dying. It seems more prudent to worry about life rather than death.

Side: Do not stand at my grave and weep
1 point

I'm not an athiest, but i think the thought of heaven vs. hell is put into place to scare you from making any mistake deemed to result in an eternity in a fiery pit. All my life i've been asked are you a christian, are you going to heaven. First of all what does being a christian mean exactly, being a narrowminded, judgemental prude. Does saying you're a christian really make it so? And how the fuck do i know if i'm going to heaven, God could take one look at me then change his mind.

Side: Do not stand at my grave and weep
1 point

I'm not an atheist, but if I was, I would probably believe in some natural reincarnation.

Side: Do not stand at my grave and weep