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If there is an afterlife why do humans have such a strong survival instinct ?

Discussion in 'General Afterlife Discussions' started by Wasco, Sep 20, 2015.

  1. I do believe in some kind of afterlife, but I always wonder why do humans have such a strong survival instinct if there is an afterlife which from what I have read is a lot better than this life ?
    And if there is an afterlife why is reproduction so important, passing of the genes ? If everyone goes to the afterlife than why try to be nonmaterialistic and good if you are forgiven and loved unconditionally anyway ?

    My friend is dying so I have been reading a lot about the afterlife and we have talked about it but there are some things that make me wonder.

    Also there is evidence for an suggestive afterlife (NDE) and there is suggestive evidence for reincarnation ? But how do the two reconcile ?

    There are just some questions that make me wonder about after life.
  2. mac

    mac senior member Staff Member

    You're in good company with us here. These issues are regular fare.... ;)
  3. frith

    frith Member

    If only I knew.

    I would just like our terrestrial sciences to spend as much time and money looking for the afterlife needle in a haystack and research NDE and past life memory reports as they do trying to find theorized elementary particles of the universe of their theorized Big Bang in particle accelerators. The materialist mindset of modern science appears mutually exclusive to anything that might be considered spiritual in nature.
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2015
  4. Nirvana

    Nirvana Member

    A lot of us have very similar questions, Wasco

    Supposedly we're here to learn lessons
  5. mac

    mac senior member Staff Member

    We come to learn from the experiences we have in this human form. Not exactly the same as what's usually meant when we say 'learn lessons'.
  6. BruceAdama

    BruceAdama Member

    The short and simple version? To prevent us from killing ourselves, and committing suicide. It's a "defense" mechanism God installed in us to keep us here, and to instill a "natural" fear of death, so that we remain alive. He's a sneaky SOB.
  7. bluebird

    bluebird Well-Known Member

    For some people, it's because they don't believe in an afterlife or aren't sure if there is one. For some people, it's because they prefer this life. For some people, it's just animal instinct.

    In my opinion, there is no definite proof of the existence of an afterlife (and no definite proof that it doesn't exist, either). Same thing with reincarnation, in my opinion. It's possible that both an afterlife (in heaven or whatever) exists and that reincarnation exists; it's also possible that one does but not the other, or that neither does.

    Not everyone has or keeps a survival instinct, anyway. I don't have one anymore, I have the opposite.
  8. Hi Wasco, first off let me say that I'm sorry that your friend is about to pass. Now where they'll be going, IMHO, is wonderful but that doesn't make it much easier on those of us they leave behind. It's great that you can be there for them during this time to talk to them, I'm sure that means a lot to them.

    I think Bruce did well in his answer. To add to that, If we truly chose these mortal coils to inhabit for a spell then it wouldn't seem to make much sense to not instill some sense of survival in all of us, otherwise our class time would be pretty short as a whole.

    Firstly, if we had no reproduction than this experiment called life wouldn't have lasted very long, right? :) I subscribe to the theory that we can plan parts of our incarnations including choosing our parent(s). There has to be some way to get us into this human world and reproduction seems to have been the choice.

    I think people can be whatever they choose to be in this life. Now, speaking from a personal standpoint, I know how it feels to hurt, be sad, feel alone, etc. I don't want others to feel that way so I try to do my part and spread love and kindness to others when I can. I hope in turn that my kind actions then will trigger the same in them. Yes, I believe we are all loved unconditionally but that doesn't take away the inherent need for us to show compassion to others and make this life a little more tolerable. As far as materialism goes, it's not static as to how people behave with or without money. Money can corrupt, yet there are many wealthy people that do very good things for others everyday just as there might be someone with no money that is terrible to all of those around them. I don't think materialism is inherently bad, in fact some believe some with money have a harder time in this life as it's not as easy for many of them to show empathy when so many of them have so much. So there's that. Bottom line, we really do come here to experience and learn and there are a ton of facets to that. It's impossible for me to see many things only in black and white.
  9. RobertaGrimes

    RobertaGrimes Administrator

    Welcome, Wasco! Matty's answer is great; I'll just add a few thoughts, based on decades of afterlife studies:

    1) It's the body that has a survival instinct. It fights to live, and that fight can be tough for us to live through when it becomes time to die. The mind is separate and eternal - it is quite literally part of God - and since it is indestructible, it wants to stay in this body only for so long as this lifetime still is useful for its purposes.

    2) Life is a school that we choose to enter in order to learn to better love and forgive. Yes, we are loved perfectly no matter how we live our lives; but unless we make a sincere effort to grow spiritually while we're here, we're going to be pretty disgusted with ourselves after we transition back without having made much progress!

    3) NDEs have nothing to do with death and little to do with the afterlife, although they are important phenomena which do have much to teach us.

    4) Reincarnation does happen. Most of us have lived many earth-lives, and will live more as we continue to grow spiritually. What we think of as heaven is a period of rest and relaxation before we choose to go back into a body. And since there is no objective time, apparently all our lives are being lived at the same time ;-).

    This is a big and complex topic, dear Wasco. Indeed, it is a whole field of related topics. It's difficult to make sense of any of it until after you have done quite a bit of study. But fortunately, more and more of the answers are becoming commonly available now. So welcome to what is the world's most fascinating hobby!
  10. RobertaGrimes

    RobertaGrimes Administrator

    Dear Jimrich, we are here to learn and grow spiritually. That seems to be the only reason, but since it is almost impossible to make much progress toward the higher afterlife levels unless we come here and take advantage of the trials that living on earth brings, for us to stay here and learn our lessons and not simply bug out ahead of time does seem to be a good idea!
  11. Waller

    Waller Banned

    Or the trials that living in physicality on any of the parallel Earths or infinite number of planetary and non-planetary bodies which support spiritual learning experiences.
  12. I agree with bluebird. I don't think that all have a survival instinct. Perhaps it could be a learned instinct that is instilled in us from childhood (parents protecting us, being taught safety at school etc.). I am probably wildly wrong but it is interesting to think about. One could argue that all animals have a survival instinct but then that would launch into a discussion about whether or not an afterlife for other life forms exist, and could get quite muddily.
  13. I was actually wondering about that, not too long ago. And I do agree with some of the other replies on this thread. We're here to learn.
  14. sarah4810

    sarah4810 Member

    I think it is because it's the "unknown". I don't think all the fire and brimstone threats of "Hell" help much either.
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2016
  15. RobertaGrimes

    RobertaGrimes Administrator

    The instinct to survive seems to be innate - it's divorced from fear, in other words - and it exists so we will persist and struggle and grow spiritually, rather than simply giving up. Unfortunately, of course, the unnecessary ignorance instilled in us by both science and religion tends to reinforce what is a healthy instinct with a deeply unhealthy and unnecessary fear of death. But hopefully not for too much longer!

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