Preparing for the end

A belief in life after death appears to be common to all human cultures.

The strongly held conviction, taught from childhood, that physical death is not the end of a person is extant in all the religious belief systems I have studied.

Therefore it must be true.

Well actually no.

I am in that awkward evidence based squad that says “show me the proof!”

What I AM convinced of is that these ideas are adaptive.

Those beliefs do a good job for us.

They make us feel better about living.

In common with other intelligent species we have self-consciousness.

We know that we exist as unique creatures.

I know I am me and you, dear reader, know you are you.

This is the essence of being human.

Science has proved to its collective sceptical satisfaction that chimpanzees, dolphins and Indian elephants are aware of their own uniqueness.

There may be other species with this cognitive ability; brain size seems to be the key determinant.

When my dog looks in a mirror she sees another dog.

When the crazy cat lady thinks that Tiddles is admiring its own feline beauty in the mirror then the old girl is clearly barking.

When Tarzan’s best buddy Cheeta looked at his reflection in a pool he saw himself and he KNEW it.

Some psychologists think that the knowledge of our unique existence was a huge evolutionary step forward.

However everything comes at a cost.

Being aware of existence means having to cope with the knowledge of one day we will cease to exist.

Ah death and taxes.

Did I mention taxes?


Belief in life after death deals with the angst of our impending nonexistence.

Hence the hereafter meme has a survival benefit.

It allows us to be stoic in the face  of huge odds, to be brave in battle and to achieve what Camus always  considered to be THE existential challenge  of any life; a happy death

Atheists like me just have to deal with the grim reality.

I would love to buy into the wonderful fiction that death isn’t the end, but I can’t.

So it is on planet Fitba that some can’t deal with the end, with the finality of it all.

For a football club there is no life after liquidation.

That’s it, finito, kaputt, the end.

Anyone selling ideas to the contrary may acquire a feeble minded following.

The typical adherent will still be in desperate denial.

It will be just another cult for the fearful who can’t handle the truth.

Now where would one look for such a group in Glasgow?

Discover Phil’s dramatic play Rebellion