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TNQ | The Noontide Query – Mortality


I’m going to posit some of my thoughts on the End, and they aren’t very pleasant:

Billions of years from now our species will be extinct, or unrecognizable, and this world will die, consumed by the fiery embrace of a swollen Sun become a bloated red giant that swallows the inner planets as it fills the sky in its final cataclysmic death throes.

All in all, it’s a pretty grim scenario, but this is a reality, a universe, that neither knows of us or cares about us. The cosmos is utterly indifferent to the Human Condition, oblivious to our needs and wants, and could wipe us out in an instant.

It doesn’t matter what you believe, hope or wish, the universe doesn’t give a hoot. Does this bother me? Not for religious reasons, most certainly, since I gave up religion, and the guilt, fear, false hope and wishful thinking that came with it in my teens.

Perhaps oddly enough, I don’t WANT to live forever, don’t want immortality in any form, because my mindset is this: Though I have the same innate survival instinct as anyone else, and think that dying before my time would surely be an inconvenience, that’s as bad as it gets. That’s it? Yep, that’s it.

I won’t notice anything afterward, because there won’t be any “I” around to notice or care.

Eternal life doesn’t appeal to me, since I’ve given some thought to the matter, and would find the idea positively horrific in any form. But without religious belief of any sort, the fear of Hell or allure of celestial bliss in Paradise just doesn’t resonate with me. I neither fear one nor want the other.

As far as I’m concerned, this is the only life I’ll get…There’ll be no more after this. Game Over, D00d.

My solution to the problem of mortality? To enjoy life like I won’t see tomorrow, and learn like I’ll hang around till the end of time, as odd as that seems. But on pain of committing the pragmatic fallacy, it seems to work for me.

Here’s a personal anecdote:

Early in 2007 I was struck by a car, and while I was being patched together by the paramedics, I did some thinking about what this implied.

I lay there on the gurney, not calling out to be saved by anyone’s god, nor fearing anyone’s spiritual unpleasantness, but thinking to myself that I had just looked Death in the face, smiled, and said to him (or her, or it, or some other unguessable pronoun) in my mind perhaps something like, “So this is what it’s like. Hmmm. Kind of peaceful. But it looks like I’m going to live. Maybe later. See ya!”

Needless to say, over the next ten days I felt like sh*t and looked like hell, but I recovered, I got better, and so did I become the Troythulu you have come to know and loathe on this blog.

And so in closing with those personal musings does my Troythuluness inquire of his readers:

Whether religious or nonbeliever, how do you feel about the thought of personal extinction, about idea of the death of the self? Why? Does death bother you? Why or Why not? What, if anything, do you think or believe awaits you? Why or why not?

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