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OG Shaka Zulu
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:30 PM)
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I grew up in a huge conservative Christian family but I've been an atheist for about a decade now. I know of only one other relative who is atheist. Everyone else goes by the book and their whole approach to things is God and Heaven.

My children will grow up without religion but what's concerned me is what do i tell them about mortality? I will admit, the idea of Heaven was comforting as a child. My uncle recently died but my kids only met him twice (my oldest is 3). Eventually I'm going to have to talk to them about death when they lose someone they know.

In general what are some largely atheist society's approach to life and death? What do they tell children who have experienced loss?
Majine
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:31 PM)
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My dad never talked to me about it.
efyu_lemonardo
May I have a cookie?
(04-21-2017, 04:32 PM)
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Celebrate life. Live it to the fullest. Love, laugh, forgive, because nothing lasts forever.
PillarEN
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:33 PM)
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Czech person here. The country is quite non-religious. Death is sad because that's that. Nothing else to say about it. The only approach to a kid freaking out about death is to tell them something along the lines of "you're so young. You don't even have to worry about that."
hydrophilic attack
(04-21-2017, 04:33 PM)
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strive to establish the republic of heaven on earth
efyu_lemonardo
May I have a cookie?
(04-21-2017, 04:34 PM)
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Originally Posted by hydrophilic attack

strive to establish the republic of heaven on earth

Also this!
rrc1594
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:34 PM)
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Originally Posted by efyu_lemonardo

Celebrate life. Live it to the fullest. Love, laugh, forgive, because nothing lasts forever.

This.
nubbe
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:34 PM)
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you go to sleep and never wake up
Geoff
Banned
(04-21-2017, 04:34 PM)
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I dunno about other people but I tell my kids that (in my opinion and others think differently and you must form your own opinions etc etc) when you're dead, you're dead and that's it. No point worrying about it because when it comes you won't be around to know. They seemed happy enough with that.

Apart from the crying.

And the nightmares.
Morat
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:34 PM)
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Originally Posted by hydrophilic attack

strive to establish the republic of heaven on earth

Originally Posted by efyu_lemonardo

Celebrate life. Live it to the fullest. Love, laugh, forgive, because nothing lasts forever.

Both of these.
StarVigil
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:34 PM)
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Antidepressants.
mrklaw
MrArseFace
(04-21-2017, 04:34 PM)
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inexorably
Bernbaum
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:34 PM)
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Accept that they're gone, grieve, and continue to make the most of the time that you've got.
John Kowalski
Banned
(04-21-2017, 04:35 PM)
I think the ideal perspective would that of returning to ecosystem. Cycle of life thing.
Pizoxuat
Junior Member
(04-21-2017, 04:35 PM)
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Raising a non-religious kid here. We've had a few chats about death, especially around the death of my grandmother, and to us death is just the end. There's nothing more to it. If you aren't starting from having believed in an afterlife beforehand, there's nothing especially scary about there not being an afterlife. That's just the way things are. This is one area where I think it is much harder to have been a believer and later become atheist than it is to have always been atheist.
fantomena
Banned
(04-21-2017, 04:36 PM)
Im not scared of death, Im scared about how bad/ill/sad the people who care about me will feel.

Like Im a teacher student I was out practice at a school where I got a good relationship with the pupils in the class I was 4 weeks in. When they told me on the last day not to go to any places or do anything I could die off because that twould mean I would not be able to be their teacher when Im done as a student, I started thinking about death.

So before the practice happened, I didn't care about death.
entremet
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:36 PM)
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This is Japan basically, no?
azyless
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:37 PM)
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This has never been an issue for anyone I know (all atheists). I don't remember having any big discussion about it or whatever, I think children are smarter than you give them credit for and they understand the concept of death from a very early age.
sugarhigh4242
Banned
(04-21-2017, 04:38 PM)
What are the "atheist societies"?

Speaking as an atheist, none of my Rites of Passage (marriage, child birth, etc) have been complicated by lack of religious belief. I generally find prayer and scripture reading to distance people from the social/emotional connection to the event. It's the same for every funeral I've attended too. Nothing in the bible is as emotionally powerful as the best worldly authors, poets, songwriters, etc.

All I want for my own death/funeral is #1 assisted suicide in the case of any prolonged mental decline, and #2 a friendly celebration.
The Omega Man
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:39 PM)
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Atheist here, 2 small kids, I don't sugarcoat death, I mean, I don't scare my kids either but when they ask about death or the afterlife I tell them that we keep in our heart and in our memories the loved ones that are no longer with us, and that death is going to happen to us all, that it's part of life. Then I proceed to hug them and buy them ice cream.
The Kree
Banned
(04-21-2017, 04:39 PM)
Ideally, the lack of belief in an afterlife would give life more relevance and immediacy. See somebody die, remember to get your own shit together.
Hycran
Banned
(04-21-2017, 04:39 PM)
"Do you remember what it was like before you were born? That's what it's like when you die"

Find comfort in the interminable unflinching abyss.
Disxo
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:39 PM)
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Death is as natural as life itself.
If it comes, it comes, after all, nothing happens after it. Why would I care?
Pestilence11
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:39 PM)
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Lights out.
SwiftDeath
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:40 PM)
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Celebrate the fact that you will exist forever for matter is energy and energy cannot be destroyed

We are all just stardust in the wind after all
JordanN
Junior Member
(04-21-2017, 04:41 PM)
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Death is literally just ceasing to exist.

When my computer dies, I don't believe it's going to heaven. It just no longer functions and eventually gets recycled or decays.

I find it more level headed to not introduce supernatural elements that science has not actually revealed the answers to. If you die and go to another realm, who created it? Does it also mean bad people like Hitler are there?
Extra Sauce
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:41 PM)
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Celebrate the gift of life and enjoy every moment.

...until death knocks at your door, that's when you find God at the last minute to get all the benefits of religion with none of the drawbacks.
red731
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:42 PM)
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I approach it as inevitable thing and am not stressing on it now.

Nothing could possibly make me feel better (I don't need that) since that is how life goes -live and die.
Lothar
Banned
(04-21-2017, 04:42 PM)

Originally Posted by OG Shaka Zulu

I grew up in a huge conservative Christian family but I've been an atheist for about a decade now. I know of only one other relative who is atheist. Everyone else goes by the book and their whole approach to things is God and Heaven.

My children will grow up without religion but what's concerned me is what do i tell them about mortality? I will admit, the idea of Heaven was comforting as a child. My uncle recently died but my kids only met him twice (my oldest is 3). Eventually I'm going to have to talk to them about death when they lose someone they know.

In general what are some largely atheist society's approach to life and death? What do they tell children who have experienced loss?

Atheist here, still going to tell my children about heaven. It's a good lie, like Santa Claus. I'm glad I had that comfort as a child. I wish I was still capable of believing in a afterlife as an adult.
Septic360
Banned
(04-21-2017, 04:42 PM)
By forming a subjective view of all things about love, happiness and harmony etc and then purporting to believe that said views apply objectively. (for some- or many)
TyrantII
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:42 PM)
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Star dust to star dust.

It's wierd, but I find it illogically comforting that the things that make me up were born in the celestial furnace of a star, and that's where some of it will end up again.
Netherscourge
Banned
(04-21-2017, 04:43 PM)
Dead = you dead. No respawns. No 1-UPS. No reload previous save.

You just dead.
Arthr2ShdsJcksn
Banned
(04-21-2017, 04:43 PM)
Atheist societies? I thought part of the benefit of being an atheist was so that you could avoid being part of a group.
Pandora012
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:43 PM)
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Basically, everyone will eventually die and that you should live life to the best of your ability.
Dervius
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:44 PM)
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I've never really had a parent-child chat about mortality.

As an atheist I first really started thinking about it in my teens. After some years of study an education I've always found the "The Universe Wastes Nothing" idea enormously comforting.

The biodegradable "coffins" people use where they are planted and their remains used to grow into trees is really beautiful too.
efyu_lemonardo
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(04-21-2017, 04:44 PM)
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Once one approaches the concept of death and an afterlife rationally it becomes apparent that fear of death is merely masking a much more immediate fear of leading a regretful life.
Keeping this in mind can be a great source of courage as it will inspire one to be true to themselves whenever possible.
Sgt. Kabukiman
Banned
(04-21-2017, 04:44 PM)
The fact that nothing lasts forever makes life all the more precious. Just follow your own path, set your own goals, do whatever makes you happy, do right by your family and friends and you'll be at peace in the end. That's pretty much my philosophy. There's no need for heaven, a full life is its own reward.

As for children who have experienced loss, there's no easy answer, we all have to go through that at some point. Just be there and listen to them.
TheDude108
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:46 PM)
https://youtu.be/iUUpvrP-gzQ?t=6m51s

Pretty much how I look at it

6mins 50secs in if it doesn't start automatically
Kurdel
Banned
(04-21-2017, 04:47 PM)
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Before your birth there was the void, and the void is where you will return.

jk make every second count, life so much more precious
Sarek
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:47 PM)
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This video explains pretty well what I think about death.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EKR-HydGohQ
snacknuts
we all knew her
(04-21-2017, 04:47 PM)
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Originally Posted by Lothar

Atheist here, still going to tell my children about heaven. It's a good lie, like Santa Claus. I'm glad I had that comfort as a child. I wish I was still capable of believing in a afterlife as an adult.

You're going to talk about the concept of heaven, or tell them that it actually exists and that's where people go when they die? If the latter, I have to ask why. And at what point do you tell them you were intentionally lying to them about all of it?
BLOODED_hands
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:49 PM)
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Originally Posted by efyu_lemonardo

Celebrate life. Live it to the fullest. Love, laugh, forgive, because nothing lasts forever.

Another to quote this.

Life is precious. Cherish and nurture it. When death comes knocking, embrace it with open arms ^_^
SugarDaddy
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:49 PM)
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You're born and things eat your dead skin then you die and things eat the rest of you
John Kowalski
Banned
(04-21-2017, 04:50 PM)

Originally Posted by Hycran

"Do you remember what it was like before you were born? That's what it's like when you die"

Find comfort in the interminable unflinching abyss.

You know i've heard this a lot of times and i really don't like this kind of thing, it focuses too much on life as what you can remember or experience as an individual, which is not a good perspective to have. Personally the most important thing about death is how it's absolutely not about me, but about how things work and transform beyond a scale we're prepared to control. By most measures i already existed before being born, i was just not made up in the configuration of atoms and molecules that can be said to be me, instead scattered and divided. And more importantly things existed before i could remember them, and more importantly still things are happening right now that i can't perceive or understand or even experience, especially things related to my body like what the eye is really seeing or what's happening with my blood or liver or what's traveling up and down the spine. And it's more important that they're happening than it is that i'm aware of them happening.

There's also the thing that most of us deal a lot more with the death of others than our own, and just thinking that they're "off" doesn't actually explain anything about what's happening to their bodies right before, during, after and long after death.
PnCIa
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:51 PM)
You die. Then you are...dead.
Enjoy your state of not-dead, thats all you can do.
JordanN
Junior Member
(04-21-2017, 04:53 PM)
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Originally Posted by Lothar

Atheist here, still going to tell my children about heaven. It's a good lie, like Santa Claus. I'm glad I had that comfort as a child. I wish I was still capable of believing in a afterlife as an adult.

I believe in getting comfort by extending human mortality.

If the end goal of death is just to go to another realm, why do we bother with tragedies on earth? We wouldn't be sad if we knew for certain there's a better life out there.

But like all animals, we always have a desire to live. We should be investing more in science so that it can cure diseases/cancer, increase our lifespan past 100, and overall making the earth be a inhabitable place for future generations to live on (instead of slowing destroying it with pollution and global warming).

But instead, it seems like the promise of an afterlife may as well just be a distraction from learning the above. War & terrorism will exist because one side isn't scared to die and thus they can do any heinous action on earth and feel rewarded for it.
efyu_lemonardo
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(04-21-2017, 04:53 PM)
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Originally Posted by efyu_lemonardo

Once one approaches the concept of death and an afterlife rationally it becomes apparent that fear of death is merely masking a much more immediate fear of leading a regretful life.
Keeping this in mind can be a great source of courage as it will inspire one to be true to themselves whenever possible.

And as practical advice stemming from this: your primary objective from a very young age should be to figure out who you are, what you want out of life and how you plan to achieve it. Start with the little things and work your way up to fulfil your grander aspirations.
capitalCORN
Member
(04-21-2017, 04:54 PM)
Celebrate their gifts, and not your loss.
slit
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(04-21-2017, 04:54 PM)
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Originally Posted by nubbe

you go to sleep and never wake up

I don't know that saying that would be comforting to a child.
MrS
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(04-21-2017, 04:55 PM)
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Accept that death is inevitable and that when you die, that's it. No second chances, no heaven. Make sure you do everything you want in the one life you have.

Originally Posted by slit

I don't know that saying that would be comforting to a child.

Don't coddle the kid. Be honest.

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