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Thread: Death

  1. #1
    Fanatic Enthusiast Xenomorph's Avatar

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    May 2007
    Orange Park, FL


    So, I've been up most of the night with this thought gnawing at me. I know it's one that many others have pondered, and I know there are innumerable different viewpoints on it. It's a simple one, however nuanced. It's death.

    I won't get into religious debate, and for the sake thereof, I will henceforth assume that when one dies, one stops all semblance of biological function and all thought on their behalf is halted. This is not a debate that asks questions of a supernatural nature, but rather of a philosophical one.

    Based on this premise- how does one deal with this phenomenon?

    It logically would not be like 'falling asleep', as even asleep we are undergoing biological processes and even thought. Our minds are active when asleep- this is not the case when one dies. Lacking the ability to comprehend once we die, how do we comprehend death?

    Forget a moment all feelings of peace and remorse one may feel before dying. When one dies, these feelings no longer exist. It's a state of non-being, in which everything you know, love, and hate no longer exists, as you no longer know, love, or hate these things. Logically speaking the world continues, but what solace there is in that ceases once a person dies.

    And whatever effects one may have left upon the world, regardless of how they make one feel while they are alive, mean little as the ability to continue to enjoy them is lost upon death. Whatever feelings of peace and achievement are gathered during a lifetime are lost upon death. It's not quite the same as not feeling anything in particular. It's not being able to feel anything.

    Consider that you are the sum of your experiences. These experiences are stored in your mind. Therefore, what you are is within your mind. This isn't to say that you don't exist, mind you. However, it is to say that one exists solely within their own mind, and that one cannot be manifest within the mind of another in any sentient manner. This does not include memory of a person, as clearly the memory of a person does not contain the sum of experiences that the original person had. Once the mind is lost, as upon death, that person is lost. This is simple to understand if one is not that person. Now imagine that you are this person. Approaching death, you continue to think, and processes continue. But, once death is reached, this is no longer the case. It is not that after death one experiences something altogether new, as the saying goes, but rather that one ceases to experience.

    This is not something that humans can comprehend, as, again, it defies comprehension due to the inherent fact that it is not something that is comprehended. This inconsistency is something that has been driving me mad for some time, and it's something that sickens me and twists my insides into a knot. Everything in the universe, literally everything in existence, known and not known, can be comprehended in one way or another. All except this phenomenon of death. All things, abstract and concrete, that exist only in thought and that exist within the physical world, all of these can be comprehended. But death is exempt from this scrutiny.

    What are your thoughts on the matter? Is my logic flawed? I desperately wish that to be the case, as I could hardly be at ease if the case was otherwise.
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  2. #2
    Enthusiast ērepgrigo's Avatar

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    Jul 2005

    Re: Death

    I pretty much just assume that we can't comprehend it. I could say it is like before you are born or when you're unconscious, but I can't really comprehend not existing or being unconscious. I can comprehend the concept of those things, but I can't really imagine doing those things.

  3. #3
    Mother Russia Cavolia's Avatar

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    Aug 2008
    Soviet Russia

    Re: Death

    The way i see it, death is an experience you don't want to miss out on because it's way too interesting. Just accept it when your time is there and try to enjoy it?
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  4. #4
    lucien is queen Hazzystan's Avatar

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    Feb 2008

    Re: Death

    I know the gut-wrenching feeling. There have been times where I've thought of the subject at night in bed, and it has made me feel physically sick.

    In many cases I believe that death would be like falling asleep; usually you will lose your conciousness before the rest of your brain shuts down, which assumingly gives you some opportunity to transist into a "sleep" as your brain is still partly functioning. Moreover, people on their death beds have been shown to release massive amounts of DMT right before death, which allows for the possibility of vivid and prolonged dreams -- since DMT slows your sense of time. As you are in this "dream state", your brain would gradually die as its neurons are deprived of oxygen, which would continue until complete death of the brain occurred.

    Based on my badly researched theory, you could never experience the process of death. You either die instantly from physical trauma or you fall unconscious until your brain eventually shuts down.
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  5. #5
    Veteran Enthusiast
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    May 2006
    Midlands, UK

    Re: Death

    If you've ever been knocked or choked out; I imagine the experience is identical; either a steady loss of conciousness; or a sudden one; except you don't wake up.

  6. #6
    Devoted Veteran
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    Aug 2008

    Re: Death

    I think of it as ceasing to exist; put in a state like that of before you were born. I don't really think much further than that into it..

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2011

    Re: Death

    ''The death is the escape of your mental awareness out of your physically body''

    - A book (don't know the name anymore).

  8. #8
    Dedicated Member Dante's Avatar

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    Aug 2009

    Re: Death

    We've been dead for billions of years, before we were born.
    To be honest, I'm looking forward to my death, I'd like to see what's on "the other side"

    Not that curious to kill myself though, I want to experience life first.

  9. #9
    Dedicated Member
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    Dec 2011

    Re: Death

    You just stop, its just nothing.
    Feels really weird to try and wrap my brain around that.

    Better not to think about it.
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  10. #10
    Enthusiast Osprey's Avatar

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    Aug 2008
    New England

    Re: Death

    We can't comprehend not existing because once we stop existing, we lose the ability to comprehend, but as a few others have said, you've theoretically already "experienced" not existing. On a universal scale, you'll spend less time alive then you will dead or not existing. You can't remember it, because you had no functioning brain before being born. It's like trying to remember the first time that your mind developed to the point at which you could think. There is nothing up until the point where you become fully conscience.

    I think that death is the same way. The mental functioning will decrease until it completely stops, but you will lose your ability to think and comprehend before your brain shuts down completely. I'm guessing that it's essential like the period of time before you fall asleep that you can never remember. Although there is theoretically a way to physically fall asleep while staying partially awake mentally, ie: wake induced lucid dreaming, but I'm not sure that the same can apply to death, because it would require some brain function. Maybe if you were dying and you realized it, you could hold on to your consciousness for as long as possible before dropping off, but I think it would be preferable to just let it happen.

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