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Alan McDougall

Do Atheists die more difficult than Believers

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I have done some research on the topic of comparing the lasts words and dying process of well known atheists and those of well known Christians/believers in the Abrahamic God.

I would like the forum to consider if the belief in God and a life after death, really gives comfort to those in their dying moments.

In my own family the Atheists members definitely died a more difficult prolonged and bleak lonely death. (That of course does not mean it is true in every case or every family)

However, the discussion need not be confined just to Christians on the religious side of the debate, any theist is welcome to contribute and indeed those who consider themselves as agnostics and have not made up their minds on the matter.

I have had a look at the death bed statement of religious believers and the death bed statements of atheists, but these are unverifiable and I will post some of them later, if the thread produces sufficient response and interest.

Thus do atheists have a more frightening painful death than believers?

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20m godless soviets of WW2 all seemed to have frightening, often horrific deaths. But one can ascribe that mostly to painful terrors of a violent death or even raw starvation.

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You got and links to your research? Death is never easy. I don't understand what you mean by a bleak and lonely death. I knew a priest who died of cancer and it was a horrible and painful death. My father was a atheist and he died in his sleep. My mother was agnostic and she died a peaceful death. My wife wasn't really religious. She believed in a God, but not in the way Christians do. She was ready and accepting of it.

Toward the end even Christ had a hard time. "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"

When I die I hope my last words are....

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20m godless soviets of WW2 all seemed to have frightening, often horrific deaths. But one can ascribe that mostly to painful terrors of a violent death or even raw starvation.

How do you know this? I think that statement is very wrong, most Russians soldiers, were not "Godless" most had a real belief in God but were forced to say they were atheists in fear of their lives from the communist state.

It is an ugly thing to say anyone is Godless, God if you believe in him created all humans and it is stupid to suggest he loves/loved the Soviet soldiers less than those of the USA.

In my opinion God does not take sides in human conflict, to do that he would have to take away our freewill.

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I have done some research on the topic of comparing the lasts words and dying process of well known atheists and those of well known Christians/believers in the Abrahamic God.

I would like the forum to consider if the belief in God and a life after death, really gives comfort to those in their dying moments.

.

Thus do atheists have a more frightening painful death than believers?

I don't doubt that some do because that is why some believers subscribe to an after life in the first place ,the thought of death scares the pants off them and the belief that there is something else comforts them whereas the atheist knows this the end and understandingly are a little afraid .I don't understand the painful part of the question as each death differs ,some die painful deaths and whether your a believer or not does not alter that .the irony is ,we all end up the same no matter how we have lived our life or what.we have believed

fullywired

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None of us gets out of this alive.

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None of us gets out of this alive.

Yes we all suffer from a disease that has an absolutely 100% fatality rate, we call this life!

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You got and links to your research? Death is never easy. I don't understand what you mean by a bleak and lonely death. I knew a priest who died of cancer and it was a horrible and painful death. My father was a atheist and he died in his sleep. My mother was agnostic and she died a peaceful death. My wife wasn't really religious. She believed in a God, but not in the way Christians do. She was ready and accepting of it.

Toward the end even Christ had a hard time. "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"

When I die I hope my last words are....

[media=]

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"My God my God why has thou forsaken me" is what Jesus cried out on the cross but he was only momentarily forsaken and he was forsaken by the Father in our stead.

I think very few people are ever forsaken by God, but those that are, become filled with a sense of unspeakable desolation, ice cold fear and hopeless doom of the absolute knowledge that they are abandoned by God forever and forever, in a cold dark lost eternity, so far from the Great God of light, love and life.

Better to be safe than sorry it is extremely foolish to blaspheme God!

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"My God my God why has thou forsaken me" is what Jesus cried out on the cross but he was only momentarily forsaken and he was forsaken by the Father in our stead.

I think very few people are ever forsaken by God, but those that are, become filled with a sense of unspeakable desolation, ice cold fear and hopeless doom of the absolute knowledge that they are abandoned by God forever and forever, in a cold dark lost eternity, so far from the Great God of light, love and life.

Better to be safe than sorry it is extremely foolish to blaspheme God!

Are you stating that atheists are " filled with a sense of unspeakable desolation, ice cold fear and hopeless doom of the absolute knowledge that they are abandoned by God forever and forever, in a cold dark lost eternity, so far from the Great God of light, love and life"??

I can't "blaspheme" something that I see no evidence supporting it's existence. I can't "blaspheme God" as an atheist.

Nibs

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Yes we all suffer from a disease that has an absolutely 100% fatality rate, we call this life!

I have a terminal case of life. :(

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Better to be safe than sorry it is extremely foolish to blaspheme God!

That's an extremely stupid way to go through life. I'd much rather be sorry than to waste all my days worshipping something that more than probably isn't even there.

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I have done some research on the topic of comparing the lasts words and dying process of well known atheists and those of well known Christians/believers in the Abrahamic God.

I would like the forum to consider if the belief in God and a life after death, really gives comfort to those in their dying moments.

In my own family the Atheists members definitely died a more difficult prolonged and bleak lonely death. (That of course does not mean it is true in every case or every family)

However, the discussion need not be confined just to Christians on the religious side of the debate, any theist is welcome to contribute and indeed those who consider themselves as agnostics and have not made up their minds on the matter.

I have had a look at the death bed statement of religious believers and the death bed statements of atheists, but these are unverifiable and I will post some of them later, if the thread produces sufficient response and interest.

Thus do atheists have a more frightening painful death than believers?

So your argument is that you would rather live under the oppressive boot of religion your entire life for a few seconds of blissful ignorance on your death bed?

Wow, that speaks volumes about the strength of the religious argument these days.

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"My God my God why has thou forsaken me" is what Jesus cried out on the cross but he was only momentarily forsaken and he was forsaken by the Father in our stead.

I think very few people are ever forsaken by God, but those that are, become filled with a sense of unspeakable desolation, ice cold fear and hopeless doom of the absolute knowledge that they are abandoned by God forever and forever, in a cold dark lost eternity, so far from the Great God of light, love and life.

Better to be safe than sorry it is extremely foolish to blaspheme God!

That is called Pascal's Wager.

http://en.wikipedia....cal's_Wager

It has been an over used ploy of the religious to try to get converts. All it really shows is ignorance to think one could fool a supreme being into thinking you are believer by going through the motions even though in your heart you know it is nonsense.

Now, you said you have been researching your topic, as yet you have not produced one bit of actual research other your own experience from you family and even that is without any details.

I don't really fear death, maybe because I know there are things that can happen to you that would make you wish for death. Been there, done that, got through it. Sometimes I wonder if I had been a Christian would I have given up and surrendered to God's will and spent the rest of my life in a wheelchair rather fighting back and relearning to walk despite all the pain and those who said I would never walk again. I know people who could have overcome it, but gave up without a fight and said God's will. I also know people despite a good fight and religious faith, who ended up a head on a pillow. Such is life, we are all slaves to physics in the end.

Edited by GreenmansGod
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had my first out of body experience when I was four.

I didn't even know what death was yet, but from that time on, death holds no fear for me.

the process of dying could be rather grim and painful, but once the body is released, absolutely no fear or pain.

bliss, enduring, bliss beyond the ability of words to describe.

edit: I'm an agnostic taoist with druidic/shamanic anarchist leanings

Edited by quiXilver
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Are you stating that atheists are " filled with a sense of unspeakable desolation, ice cold fear and hopeless doom of the absolute knowledge that they are abandoned by God forever and forever, in a cold dark lost eternity, so far from the Great God of light, love and life"??

I can't "blaspheme" something that I see no evidence supporting it's existence. I can't "blaspheme God" as an atheist.

Nibs

I am saying regardless of what you believe, if God has separate himself from you, you will know it by the desolation that enters your life. As far as blaspheming goes, you might be right, but depravity in my opinion is just another word for blaspheming God even if you don't believe in him.

Ignorance of the law does not mean you will not be found guilty if you transgress it. I am talking about our human laws. The laws of righteous living are imprinted by God into every humans consciousness, so if you go against your moral compass you are transgressing the will of God even if you have convinced yourself that God is a fairy tale.

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Well.......

It's pretty well prooven that about 11% of those brought back from near death encountered something resembling an after life ( even if it is not). I personally believe we all go through this and that there are many that have but just can't remember ( much like dreams).

I would think that about 11% for sure ( if not all) of the dying go through something that pretty much prooves to them an after life exists. Even atheists. Yes they have Peacful NDEs aswell.

If we stick with the 11% I would think that the true final moments of 11 % of atheists are more like "holy ****!!!! All those woo woo lovers were right"

Of course I think actual death experiences are 100%. No I don't believe they will suffer anymore for not believing in the abrahamic god. It's pretty silly to think that an all loving being would punish somone for not being able to believe in it. It's a bit childish an sounds more like the will of some church than a supreme being. I'm pretty sure the great spirit's arms are wide open. Why wouldn't they be?

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I am saying regardless of what you believe, if God has separate himself from you, you will know it by the desolation that enters your life. As far as blaspheming goes, you might be right, but depravity in my opinion is just another word for blaspheming God even if you don't believe in him.

Ignorance of the law does not mean you will not be found guilty if you transgress it. I am talking about our human laws. The laws of righteous living are imprinted by God into every humans consciousness, so if you go against your moral compass you are transgressing the will of God even if you have convinced yourself that God is a fairy tale.

" not all those who wander are lost; "

Your proselytizing of hell and fear is not going to help your cause. Even PA knows better than to pull that one. It only makes me think of Baptist Bible camp and the week of brainwashing I went through, two years in a row. I am not a child and I know the tricks evangelicals play to pull in the unsuspecting. I have been down that road and I am not so easily swayed from my true path. Me thinks, your claim of researching your topic fall short of the truth.

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I would think that about 11% for sure ( if not all) of the dying go through something that pretty much prooves to them an after life exists. Even atheists. Yes they have Peacful NDEs aswell.

I'm sure that x% of all people do have what is termed an NDE, but I'd be surprised if 11% of atheists think that this pretty much 'proves' that an afterlife exists. There is a pretty large leap being made there from a personal experience to, thus, this specific external reality.

I'm pretty sure the great spirit's arms are wide open. Why wouldn't they be?

For that matter, why would they be?

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I think it has a lot to do with the willingness to let go. If you've spent a great deal of your life cultivating a belief in something greater (tag any name to it), then perhaps it's easier. If your afraid or unsure then it might be more difficult.

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The perfect vid for this topic...LOL!

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I'm sure that x% of all people do have what is termed an NDE, but I'd be surprised if 11% of atheists think that this pretty much 'proves' that an afterlife exists. There is a pretty large leap being made there from a personal experience to, thus, this specific external reality.

For that matter, why would they be?

They say that their god is all loving that's why they would, unless we are defining all lovening differently.

Even for the most skeptic of skeptics it would be pretty hard to continue to be skeptical if ones finds one's self self floating over their own body watching doctors work, then to be wisked off to have a conversation with dear deceeased gramps. One could maintain they brain hyothesis after that I suppose, there are indeed atheists and skeptics that have had NDEs and do, but many who are no longer skeptical as well.

I doubt during the event skeptics are thinking --

---aaaaaa its just a dream--- I hope I pull through so I can tease my doc about that bald spot on his head----

I suppose the die hard skeptic is just going to have to...well die to find out. But regardless if there is no after life the last thoughts of many x% of skeptics before they wink out of existence will be a conversion. Or if there is an afterlife they might just walk around the spirit world expecting to wake up from their hullucination, but I think they would come around eventually.

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Even for the most skeptic of skeptics it would be pretty hard to continue to be skeptical if ones finds one's self self floating over their own body watching doctors work, then to be wisked off to have a conversation with dear deceeased gramps. One could maintain they brain hyothesis after that I suppose, there are indeed atheists and skeptics that have had NDEs and do, but many who are no longer skeptical as well.

Why wouldn't they be skeptical if they found themselves floating? There are far more vivid alien abduction stories than NDEs, and the former doesn't involve the confounding factor of what a dying brain experiences. Are you likewise unskeptical of alien abduction stories? Our brain can create all kinds of experiences as a result of dreams, mental illnesses, and psychedelics, all of which I presume you believe are just under the 'brain hypothesis', but the properly skeptical should view the NDE as something entirely different? Why would that be if so?

I doubt during the event skeptics are thinking --

---aaaaaa its just a dream--- I hope I pull through so I can tease my doc about that bald spot on his head----

Ha agreed, but it's hard to keep in mind when you're dreaming or tripping that what you are experiencing is not real either.

I suppose the die hard skeptic is just going to have to...well die to find out. But regardless if there is no after life the last thoughts of many x% of skeptics before they wink out of existence will be a conversion.

I don't know why you use phrases like 'die-hard skeptic' on this particular subject, there doesn't seem to be anything extreme at all about the skepticism involved. What exactly is this great evidence that only the die-hard skeptic would deny? Here's the score as I see it currently, please feel free to add evidence I may well be unaware of it:

Evidence:

- Some people have experiences when their brains are dying involving feelings of peace, love and oneness, and see an interact with dead family members. (And some people have entirely other experiences, some scary, some bizarre, that have nothing in common with this experience. And some have no experience at all)

Die-hard skeptic: These experiences may be an effect of a dying brain.

Alternative: These experiences may be indicative that we all have a spirit component to 'us', that lives on after we die in the some realm where all/some who have died before us currently dwell, and that is possibly eternal.

The Alternative there is a pretty huge claim based on what seems to be very little to support it. I haven't even mentioned that coincidentally the Alternative is also something that the NDE-er usually just happens to want to be true, which doesn't help.

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I'd say "Yes". Christians and other Theists do get some kind of comfort out of their faith when they are dying. Unless they believe they are dying as a horrible sinner, then they likely are terrified they will die before being "saved" by repentance or being forgiven.

I can imagine an Atheist dying easily too. If they are like, "Finally.... It's over....." They could die very easily and quickly.

I think it is strong emotion that keeps people struggling when they are sure to die... Lingering. They have some reason to remain here.... Maybe Fear of the unknown. Maybe anger at the Universe. Maybe they just don't want to loose their stuff.

I think having religious Faith does help with having a good attitude and a healthy emotional life. And I think that having a healthy life is the most important factor in how much you struggle when you die.

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I don't care, I just hope I go in my sleep. I'll worry about the afterlife if I wake up after death. If not then there's nothing to worry about then is there.

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Well.......

It's pretty well prooven that about 11% of those brought back from near death encountered something resembling an after life ( even if it is not). I personally believe we all go through this and that there are many that have but just can't remember ( much like dreams).

I would think that about 11% for sure ( if not all) of the dying go through something that pretty much prooves to them an after life exists. Even atheists. Yes they have Peacful NDEs aswell.

If we stick with the 11% I would think that the true final moments of 11 % of atheists are more like "holy ****!!!! All those woo woo lovers were right"

Of course I think actual death experiences are 100%. No I don't believe they will suffer anymore for not believing in the abrahamic god. It's pretty silly to think that an all loving being would punish somone for not being able to believe in it. It's a bit childish an sounds more like the will of some church than a supreme being. I'm pretty sure the great spirit's arms are wide open. Why wouldn't they be?

God hates wickedness. It also says in the Gospel about souls being like crops in a field and that tares were planted by the enemy in the good crop. That the tares will be allowed to grow, but when harvest time has come that the tares will be separated from the good crop and cast into the fire.

Also it says straight is the gate and narrow the way that leads to life and few there be that find it. It seems that you have to live a certain way to get to special places after death, or else you shall not fit in.

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