I believe that consciousness is eternal. What I mean by this is that there never was or will be a time when you were/are not alive. Just because we don’t remember being babies doesn’t mean we weren’t once babies, and in the same way, I believe we existed long before birth, but do not have a recollection of that time.
In order for you to understand why I believe this I need to say something about my conception of God. I believe God is all there is. All creatures and even material things are a part of God. God is omnipresent, so there is not one atom in the cosmos that is separate from God. An attribute of God’s nature is existence. This being so, it is impossible for God to cease existing, even for a moment, in all eternity. Because we are all part of God, we share in that nature, and therefore exist eternally.
It is a mystery to me what exactly happens before birth and after death. God has not given me a revelation or insight into what happens. But I am quite sure there is a continuation of consciousness, and I believe we probably enter into another realm. The experience of waking up from life into death might be akin to waking up from a long dream into our present waking state.
I am curious about what we might be able to do in order to prepare ourselves for life after death. Not being a Christian or a person of any other particular faith, there are not any particular doctrines that I adhere to concerning the afterlife. There may well be a heaven-like realm, but how do we get there? If you are a Christian, then faith in Jesus is of course central. If you are a Muslim, then good works in accordance with the guidance of the Qur’an are of paramount importance. But if you do not adhere to a particular faith, how do you prepare for life after death?
To be honest, I don’t know the answer to this question, and I would very much appreciate your views. I often pray to God asking Him to help me to use this life in order to prepare for the infinitely longer next one, but I am yet to receive a revelation of what I need to do. I have spent years exploring philosophy and spirituality, but the question remains unanswered.
I do have some reassurance, however. I believe that God is in control of all action in the cosmos, including all human action. So there is no free will. In a sense, this takes the pressure off, because I can have faith that God will unfold every aspect of my life in perfect accordance with His divine will. So you could say it is ultimately up to God how I behave in this life, and how I prepare for the next life.
Do you believe in life after death?
How should we prepare for the next life?