How did you come to terms with the idea of nothing happening after you die?
I still have issues with the fact that one day I'm just going to shut down like a PC and that's it. I'm not expecting an afterlife, heaven, hell and all that made-up bullshit, but I still can't fully accept it.

Some suggestions, own experiences would really be helpful.

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Well, then you shouldn't say that you have a mission to enlighten people. :)

Well, trying to achieve a goal is more important than the result sometimes.

meditation has helped me accept death.  Fear of death is attached to thinking that we are permanent, and we get scared of our permanence on this earth ending; we are scared that everything that we are will vanish. But once you accept the impermanence of your being, the truth that you are already constantly being born and are constantly dying (that your thoughts, actions, and perceptions are always being born, and are always dying) then you can accept death.  We are actually already dead, we just don't perceive it that way because our perceptions only exist in the present.  This may not help you, and it probably seems bizarre, but viewing things in this manner has quelled my fears of death, and has allowed me to be a happy atheist.  I hope peace comes to on this issue 

Don't think about it.  I'm serious.  That's my way of dealing with it.   Thanks for screwing that up.   ;) J/k.

And they say ignorance is a bad thing.

You can only not think about it if you're not bothered by it. Not thinking about it is not a solution for people who are bothered by it. :)

Would you say; thinking about it leads to being bothered about it or being bothered about it leads to thinking about it?

Which was what my "get a life" faux pas was all about. "Get a life" in my comment was an attempt to direct your thoughts towards a more positive outlook, rather than dwelling on the prospect of Mr E.Nigma not being on ThinkAtheist no more, to think about the positive impacts your life or words may have on others. If you see where I'm coming from.

You have to think about it at least once. If you are not bothered by it then you don't think about it anymore. If you are bothered by it you start thinking about it more and more trying to find out why you are bothered by it and what can you do to stop being bothered by it.

That's what I was trying to suggest, by getting a life or should I say - filling your life with as much positivity as possible that there's simply no time to think about the negativity of your demise.

There are things that trouble me, but I can throw these thoughts away, because those troubled thoughts are directly related to the way I live my life i.e. If I died suddenly, what with this rock n roll lifestyle I lead (LOL), will people remember me well or be glad I've kicked the bucket? I can only give them good memories of me by living a good life and not being too frugal with the beers when friends come round or mowing the lawn for the old lady down the street for free.

It is, of course, impossible to imagine the loss of the personality and consciousness that is you and it is certainly something I have some difficulty with. There are however a couple of reasons why I haven't gone mad trying to imagine the unimaginable or simply given up, taken the easy option and tried to drown my fears in the unbelievable, but rather comforting, god stories.

One reason is thinking about what it would really mean to live for all eternity. This is certainly not something that anyone who believes, or hopes, they are going to live forever can seriously have contemplated. To be able to do absolutely everything it is ever possible to do and still be left with an infinite amount of time in which to repeat those things an infinite number of times. That would, for me, be a true definition of hell and something that I'm sure I would beg to be released from after only a few million, never mind billion, years.

Another thing is remembering what Carl Sagan said about us coming from star dust, which provides a far more satisfactory and picturesque portrayal of the time before you existed than simply saying, 'I didn't exist'. Taking this idea into the future, my consciousness will one day be gone but the stuff I'm made of will continue to be recycled throughout the universe. Who knows where my atoms will be in a few billion, billion years.  I find musing over the future possibilities rather more satisfying than imagining an eternity at the knee of a celestial sky daddy. It's just a shame my consciousness won't be there to witness those future travels.

Someone on another website said the words to the well-known children's song should be 'Twinkle, twinkle, little star. How I wonder WHO your are.' What a lovely idea. That's the sort of future I want ;-)

I haven't come to terms with it yet. That fear of the unknown just KILLS me. (pun maybe intended?)

 

It creeps up on me at the most inconvenient times--while having sex, shopping for groceries, playing with my child...it's really quite annoying.

 

I guess I'm afraid of the death process. Will it hurt? Will I know I'm dying? What will happen to my loved ones after I'm gone? What about all the memories and possessions I've gathered during my lifetime? Will they just get thrown away and forgotten about as if they never existed?

 

It causes me a lot of anxiety.

 

One thing I'm NOT afraid of is the old "What if you're wrong and there is a heaven and such and such" thing. I find the idea of an afterlife, particularly the Christian afterlife, kind of absurd.

I can't change the fact that someday I will die.  Therefore, it is of no use to obsess and fret over it.  Everyone that has ever lived has or will die.  And while I still fear the actual process of dying, I have no fear of death because I realize that I will not experience it.  I try to instead focus on life and enjoy it as much as I can.

 

But don't think that you are abnormal for worrying it over.  It is normal to have some anxiety over the issue, especially in those dark and solemn times just before sleep when the mind wanders.  

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