As we study the afterlife, more questions than answers is what we seem to find. The more we know, the more we want to know. In my afterlife topics group I see people getting all bent out of shape over whether or not we have sex in the afterlife. So much so, I’ve seen people kicked out of the group for not being able to discuss it civilly. Some people find the idea of reincarnation a great comfort. They like Earth. They like adventure. They probably like their current life. For others, the very thought brings them to tears. I have a friend going through cancer treatment right now. Another friend, who believes in soul planning, asked me “Do you think she planned this?” This got us talking about exit points- the time that we die. Is it, as some say, that we have an appointed time to die? Or, is it, as others say, that we have multiple exit points planned in and we choose one on the fly?
I’ve written about this before. I apply my “So what?” methodology to any of these questions. What difference does it make to my life today, right now, what I believe about this? While I am as curious as the next guy, more curious actually, I’m not about wasting my brain power and living today worrying about the possibilities not of tomorrow, but of the time after I die. I trust it’ll be all good. If a teaching brings me comfort or peace, if it puts me on a better path, if it makes me want to treat my fellow human beings better, I’ll give it a lot of consideration. If it causes me distress or despair, if it makes me feel hopeless, I let it go. On the subject of exit points, I told my friend: “This is what we know. We know we are all going to die. We know we are all going to take one exit point. What practical difference does it make if there are multiple exit points? There is nothing we can do about it. And, repeating myself, we only take one (exit point).” That’s all the time I’m going to give to worrying about whether there is one or multiple exit points.
Divine Providence is something I believe in. I believe that every moment is “planned” or at least known. Some shy away from this because it is “determinism” which can lead to fatalism. OK. I’m not going to argue that with them. Some believe that we plan the big things, but there is “free will” that allows to navigate within certain parameters. I don’t think free will and everything being known are mutually exclusive. If I watch a movie that I’ve seen before, I know what is going to happen. It doesn’t mean I caused it to happen. So “foreknowledge” (which presumes a linear interpretation of time which I belie is fundamentally wrong) isn’t necessarily causation. “God” knowing the future doesn’t mean God causes the future. But, back to my “So what?”. The belief that things are planned, to at least a certain extent, is something I spend time on because it’s very important in how I live my life now. I find the belief to be empowering, comforting, and peaceful. I believe that I am taken care of at all times, in spite of appearances. If that belief causes you to feel trapped, or out of control, or despondent, I would recommend you let it go.
I’ve been discussing reincarnation with another friend today. Reincarnation fails my “So what?” test. There is nothing I can do about it today. Whether reincarnation is forced or by choice, after we go Home, is something I’ll deal with when I get there. My personal opinion as of May 17, 2017 is that reincarnation is true, in some form. I think it’s more complicated than we humans can understand. I don’t think it’s linear. Time, in the afterlife, is not the way we perceive it here. If we live other lives, they are more in parallel with the life we are living now than they are serial. And, I don’t believe that “Brian” will come back in another body at another time in the past or the future. Maybe a part of my soul has been or will be or is in another incarnation, but “Brian” won’t be in a body again. My friend just wants to be with her husband again, “forever”. But, that’s based on what she knows now, missing him and the life they had together when he was in the flesh, and just wanting that reunion. I’m reminded of the end of “What Dreams May Come” when, after their great adventure, the couple decides to come back to Earth and discover each other all over again. While we’re going through the pain of the separation, the trials of being incarnated, and the fear of the future, it’s hard to imagine we’d want to do it again. But, who knows? There’s nothing like young love, discovering everything about that other person, building a family together, growing together. I hope I don’t sign up for this again, but I’m not going to rule out that my soul will grow restless and say “Hey, why not one more time?” (stupid soul).
I’ve applied this “So what?” to so many things in my life and it brings me so much peace. I was discussing the fear of flying with another friend whose husband has preceded her into the next realm. How freeing it is to fly knowing that if the plane makes it, you have a great vacation ahead. If the plane doesn’t make it, you have a greater adventure ahead. If the plane goes down “So what?”