Do you believe in life after death?

Do you believe in life after death?

  • Yes

    Votes: 83 39.7%
  • No

    Votes: 88 42.1%
  • I don't know

    Votes: 38 18.2%

  • Total voters
    209
Oct 2013
6,206
Planet Nine, Oregon
If you believe in life after death, does that mean forever? Forever is a very very long time. The Universe is thought to be about 13.5 billion years old give or take a few hundred million years. Forever is a lot longer. Any number of years you could write using powers of powers would be infinitesimal compared to forever . I can't imagine what we could possibly be doing forever.
The cruelest hell. Oh the irony! Hard to think of a heaven that wouldn't be.
 

Ficino

Ad Honorem
Apr 2012
6,913
Romania
St. Maximus the Confessor on Our Lord and the mystery of Salvation (from Abiguum 21 to John):

[...] For the entire mystery of our salvation has been wisely arranged to unfold in a shadow; an image, and truth. The law has but a shadow, as the divine apostle says, of the good things to come; it was not the image of the [1253D] realities themselves, through which God the Word prepared those under the law to receive the Gospel, in the manner that was appropriate to them, that is, through a dim manifestation of the truth. The Gospel, on the other hand, possesses the image of true things, and already clearly bears all the characteristics of the good things to come, and it is through this image that those who choose the pure and undefiled life of the Gospel, through their strict exercise of the commandments, take possession of the likeness of the good things of the age to come, and are made ready by the Word through the hope that they will be spiritually vivified by their union with the archetype of these true things, and so become living images of Christ, or rather become one with Him through grace (rather than being a mere simulacrum), or even, perhaps, become the Lord Himself, if such an idea is not too onerous for some to bear, for now, consistent with the wisdom of our God-bearing teacher, the Word is called the forerunner of Himself, since He manifests Himself according to the measure of those who receive Him, in [1256A] both the Old Testament and the New Testament, in which the Word runs ahead of Himself through riddles, words, and figures, by which He leads us to a truth that exists without these things. And the Lord Himself bears witness to this when He says: I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now, indicating to them a teaching that is more sublime than the one that preceded it, but which is itself lower than that which would follow through the divine Spirit.

And thus He rightly added that, when the Spirit of truth comes, He will lead you into all truth, along with what He says elsewhere: Behold, I will be with you always, unto the consummation of the age. This does not mean that He would not be absolutely with them after this, [1256B] but that they would come to know Him as something more sublime, in comparison to the lower form by which, on the basis of their own abilities, they had hitherto been able to know Him. For even though He Himself is always the same, and is beyond all change or alteration, becoming neither greater nor lesser, He nonetheless becomes all things to everyone out of His exceeding goodness: lowly for the lowly, lofty for the lofty, and, for those who are deified through His grace, He is God by nature, and Deity beyond all knowledge as God beyond God. It follows from this that all the forms and mysteries of divine providence on behalf of man in this present age, even though these be of great importance, constitute but a precursor and prefiguration of future things. Thus, when we compare the apprehensible word of the Lord to the more hidden and mystical word that will be granted to the disciples in the coming age (or when we compare His first coming [1256C] to His second), we see that it is the forerunner of itself. And this is something the Lord indicated indistinctly in Himself, in proportion to the capacity of those who receive Him. But He has not yet revealed the mysteries that are hidden silently within Him, because for the time being the whole world could not contain them. For, as was mentioned above, whatever is subject to written expressions and spoken words, as well as the meaning emerging from it—even if it is something spiritual—compared to whatever cannot be grasped at all by written expressions and utterances, holds the place of plain sound compared to a masterly articulated speech. For this reason, perhaps, the godly teacher set all the words that were uttered to the disciples through Christ our God in juxtaposition with that ineffable mind or intellect that is John, well and wisely naming the forerunning grace from the ability to receive it.
 
Last edited:
Jun 2016
1,808
England, 200 yards from Wales
From St. Maximus the Confessor's Two Hundred Texts on Theology and the Incarnate Dispensation of the Son of God, II:
Following the link below is the same passage in another English translation:

Maximus Confessor
"Again there are other ages or eons, free of a temporal nature" - does that really make any sort of sense, an age or aeon is, by definition, a span of time, how can it not have a temporal nature? A cat with no feline characteristics or nature?
 

Ficino

Ad Honorem
Apr 2012
6,913
Romania
"Again there are other ages or eons, free of a temporal nature" - does that really make any sort of sense, an age or aeon is, by definition, a span of time, how can it not have a temporal nature? A cat with no feline characteristics or nature?
There is no big mystery in this, as the Church Fathers distinguished between "temporal" age, which is related to creaturely material, sensible, movement/change like in this world (for them this is the temporality proper) and spiritual age, which is related to creaturely spiritual movement/change. OTOH "temporal" ages have beginning and end (like this age/the age of this world), while "non-temporal" ages have also beginning, but have no end.To be more specific, for them the holy angels are not "temporal" beings, though their being is in age/aeon.
 
Last edited:
Jun 2016
1,808
England, 200 yards from Wales
There is no big mystery in this, as the Church Fathers distinguished between "temporal" age, which is related to creaturely material, sensible, movement/change (for them this is the temporality proper) and spiritual age, which is related to creaturely spiritual movement/change. To be more specific, for them the holy angels are not "temporal" beings, though their being is in age/aeon. OTOH "temporal" ages have beginning and end, while non-temporal ages have beginning, but have no end.
" spiritual age, which is related to creaturely spiritual movement/change." - how can you have movement or change of any kind without time, one state succeeding another?
So this must also be temporal, attaching the undefined label 'spiritual' to it doesn't change the basic meaning of change.
 
Oct 2018
1,209
Adelaide south Australia
When I was a gossoon and asked one of the good brothers and embarrassing question about the faith, they would always give the same impeccable answer: "It's a mystery of faith, we just have to believe." I kid you not. As for my Irish catholic father, "shut up! " he would explain.

Questions like asking for an explanation about the trinity I could understand. Still can't get my head around the concept, especially the bit s about Jesus being "begotten but not made" and eternal, having always existed with the father.

I have always liked Epicurus' pithy aphorism:

Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent.
Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent.
Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?”


Hinduism and Buddhism both give reasonable explanations for the existence of evil and suffering. The Baghavad Gita is well worth a read. None of the abrahamic faiths have come up with a rational answer. The problems of evil and suffering are so basic that i would expect any religion worth its salt would have a dandy explanation
 

Ficino

Ad Honorem
Apr 2012
6,913
Romania
" spiritual age, which is related to creaturely spiritual movement/change." - how can you have movement or change of any kind without time, one state succeeding another?
So this must also be temporal, attaching the undefined label 'spiritual' to it doesn't change the basic meaning of change.
To understand "the ancients" we first have to understand their meanings, which are not seldom different from ours. They understood "temporality" to be related to material, sensible, movement, not aeonic one. See e.g. what St. Paul wrote in 2 Cor. 4:18: "While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are aeons", where "aeons" are called the things which have their being in the "non-temporal" aeon/eternity, as distinguished from those which partake to time. This also had in view the author of the Scholia to the works of St. Dionysius the Areopagite, who commenting on a passage from The Divine Names, X wrote that:

[Dionysius] was aware that there were certain philosophers who taught that all the intelligibles were also immortal and that all the generated intelligents were also ungenerated ('generated', because they subsisted from God as cause by way of the procession of enlightenment; 'ungenerated', because they proceeded not in time, but eternally, that is, in the aions). ([...] the sensibles have time, whereas the intelligibles have the aion, whence also they are called eternal.)
In our understanding we can say that the things partaking to the spiritual aeon/eternity partake to a certain kind of "temporality", as only God Almighty is before and above times and aeons, but not in the meaning in which they can suffer alteration like the the things of this world.

Edit: BTW, the Latin medievals, according to their understanding, called the "non-temporal" aeon as .
 
Last edited:
Dec 2018
3
USA
Some religions support such a canon as life after life, but personally I think that humanity cannot comprehend the whole structure of the universe and think about such things is simply meaningless.
 

Similar History Discussions