Recently I have been musing about death and existence beyond it. For as long asI can remember I have believed in the existence of something beyond this life we live and yet…
And yet I have nothing really that reinforces this belief. I have sometimes felt that I can feel presences around me of those I have known and loved who have died but is that just wishful thinking? I’ve never received any kind of clear message that confirms that there are ancestral spirits around me.
I like the idea of reincarnation in some shape or form but I have no explanation of how it might work. Apart from one strange instance where I either remembered being a tree or simply saw myself as one for a brief moment in time I have nothing really concrete to support the feeling that I may have walked this world before. I know some poeple that have experienced memories in regression that make them certain that they have lived before but for myself I am uncomfortable with the idea of regression. I think that even if I did seem to remember something I would always wonder if it was real or just my imagination fueled by the many fiction books I have read.
On my way home yesterday on the bus I was thinking about these things for what is probably the millionth time at least and I finally came to understand that it doesn’t really matter.
If I live beyond this life in some way I probably will not remember this life just as now I have no memory of any past experience. I have some knowledge of some of my ancestors, they live on in my blood and my limited memories of them. I have the precious knowledge of my own blood descendants, my children. If I can pass on stories of family members that they will never know to them then in some small way those people will live on. If, in their turn, they have children and pass stories of previous generations on then I will live on not only in their blood but in their memories.
I will never know for certain if there is anything else but it doesn’t matter to me any more (or rather that I will never really know the answer no longer matters I will simply carry on believing that there is more to existence than this life). What matters is my blood and something of my story. This is my legacy to the future just as my blood and the stories of my ancestors are my inheritance.
2 thoughts on “Death and the continuity of the self”
I go through phases, regarding lifes continuity, of 'certain clarity' when it seems as though I have felt or perceived the ancestors being present & tangibly close at times. There are other times though, when I experience moments of complete dispare at the prospect of oblivion.
So thanks for raising these issues with your usual honesty.
You're welcome my friend. I think many folk go through similar feelings from time to time. It's part of that whole questioning the meaning of life thing that our species does.
Oddly there are still those who don't know that the answer is 42 😉