ouroborosNice sto­ry, as repost­ed by famous­mod­i­fi­ca­tion in Hey Red­dit, what do you think hap­pens after you die? on Reddit.com.

You were on your way home when you died.

It was a car acci­dent. Noth­ing par­tic­u­lar­ly remark­able, but fatal nonethe­less. You left behind a wife and two chil­dren. It was a pain­less death. The EMTs tried their best to save you, but to no avail. Your body was so utter­ly shat­tered you were bet­ter off, trust me.

And that’s when you met me.

“What… what hap­pened?”, you asked. “Where am I?”

“You died”, I said, mat­ter-of-fact­ly. No point minc­ing words.

“There was a… a truck and it was skid­ding…”

“Yup”, I said.

“I… I died?”

“Yup. But don’t feel bad about it. Every­one dies,” I said.

You looked around. There was noth­ing­ness. Just you and me. “What is this place?”, you asked. “Is this the after­life?”

“More or less,” I said.

Are you god?”, you asked.

“Yup,” I replied. “I’m God.”

“My kids… my wife,” you said.

“What about them?”

“Will they be alright?”

“That what I like to see,” I said. “You just died and your main con­cern is for your fam­i­ly. That’s good stuff right there.”

You looked at me with fas­ci­na­tion. To you, I didn’t look like God. I just looked like some man. Some vague author­i­ty fig­ure. More of a gram­mar school teacher then the almighty.

“Don’t wor­ry,” I said. “They’ll be fine. Your kids will remem­ber you as per­fect in every way. They did­nt have time to grow con­tempt for you. Your wife will cry on the out­side, but will be secret­ly reliv­eved. To be fair, your mar­riage was falling apart. If its any con­so­la­tion, she’ll feel very guilty for feel­ing relieved.”

“Oh,” you said. “So what hap­pens now? Do I go to heav­en or hell or some­thing?”

“Nei­ther,” I said. “You’ll be rein­car­nat­ed.”

“Ah,” you said. “So the Hin­dus were right.”

“All the reli­gions are right in their own way,” I said. “Walk with me.” You fol­lowed along as we strolled in the void.

“Where are we going?”

“Nowhere in par­tic­u­lar,” I said. “Its just nice to walk while we talk.”

“So whats the point, then?”, you asked. “When I get reborn, I’ll just be a blank slate right? A baby. So all my expe­ri­ences and every­thing I did in this life wont mat­ter.”

“Not so!”, I said. “You have with­in you all the knowl­edge and expe­ri­ences of all your past lives. You just don’t remem­ber them right now.”

I stopped walk­ing and took you by the shoul­ders. “Your soul is more mag­nif­i­cent, beau­ti­ful, and gigan­tic then you can pos­si­ble imag­ine. A human mind can only con­tain a tiny frac­tion of what you are. It’s like stick­ing your fin­ger in a glass of water to see if it’s hot or cold. You put a tiny part or your­self into the ves­sel, and when you bring it back out, you’ve gained all the expe­ri­ences it had. You’ve been a human for the last 34 years, so you haven’t stretched out yet and felt the rest of your immense con­scious­ness. If we hung out here for longer, you’d start remem­ber­ing every­thing. But there’s no point doing that between each life.”

“How many times have I been rein­car­nat­ed, then?”

“Oh lots. Lots and lots. And into lots of dif­fer­ent lives,” I said. “This time around you’ll be a Chi­nese peas­ant girl in 540 A.D.”

“Wait, what?”, you stam­mered. “You’re send­ing me back in time?”

“Well, I guess tech­ni­cal­ly. Time, as you know it, only exists in your uni­verse. Things are dif­fer­ent where I come from.”

“Where you come from?”, you pon­dered.

“Oh sure!”, I explained. “I come from some­where. Some­where else. And there are oth­ers like me. I know you’ll want to know what it’s like there, but you hon­est­ly won’t under­stand.”

“Oh,” you said, a lit­tle let down. “But wait. If I get rein­car­nat­ed to oth­er places in time, could I have inter­act­ed with myself at some point?”

“Sure. Hap­pens all the time. And with both lives only aware of their own times­pan you don’t even know its hap­pen­ing.”

“So what’s the point of it all?”

“Seri­ous­ly?”, I asked. “Seri­ous­ly? Your ask­ing me for the mean­ing of life? Isn’t that a lit­tle stereo­typ­i­cal?”

“Well it’s a rea­son­able ques­tion,” you per­sist­ed. I looked into your eyes. “The mean­ing of life, the rea­son I made this whole uni­verse, is for you to mature.”

“You mean mankind? You want us to mature?”

“No. Just you. I made this whole uni­verse for you. With each new life you grow and mature, and become a larg­er and greater intel­lect”

“Just me? What about every­one else?”

“There is no one else,” I said. “In this uni­verse, there’s just you, and me.”

You stared blankly at me. “But all the peo­ple on Earth…”

“All you. Dif­fer­ent incar­na­tions of you.”

“Wait. I’m every­one!?”

“Now you’re get­ting it,” I said, with a con­grat­u­la­to­ry slap on the back.

“I’m every human who ever lived?”

“Or who will ever live, yes.”

“I’m Abra­ham Lin­coln?”

“And you’re John wilkes Booth, too,” I added.

“I’m Hitler?”, you said, appalled.

“And you’re the mil­lions he killed.”

“I’m Jesus?”

“And you’re every­one who fol­lowed him.”

You fell silent.

“Every time you vic­tim­ized some­one,” I said, “You were vic­tim­iz­ing your­self. Every act of kind­ness you’ve done, you’ve done to your­self. Every hap­py and sad moment ever expe­ri­enced by any human was, or will be, expe­ri­enced by you.”

“Why?”, you asked me. “Why do all this?”

“Because some­day, you will become like me. Because that’s what you are. You’re one of my kind. You’re my child.”

“Whoa,” you said, incred­u­lous. “You mean I’m a god?”

“No. Not yet. You’re a fetus. You’re still grow­ing. Once you’ve lived every human life through­out all time, you will have grown enough to be born.”

“So the whole uni­verse,” you said. “Its just…”

“An egg of sorts,” I answered. “Now its time for you to move on to your next life.” And I sent you on your way.

– The End

N.B.: I cor­rect­ed punc­tu­a­tion and some obvi­ous typos.

Gepubliceerd door Stijn Vogels

Natural born probleemoplosser met een oog voor usability, design, trends en details. Professioneel bezig met letterwoorden als SEO, SEA, SMO, DIY en CYA.

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6 reacties

    1. And a quite con­fus­ing one to boot. In gen­er­al the sto­ry fol­lows the Gold­en Rule: “do not do to oth­ers what you would not like to be done to you”. I find that this sto­ry some­times slips into my mind when I’m feel­ing frus­trat­ed about work­ing with oth­er peo­ple who do not seem to want to move for­ward. Plus it adds a huge amount of empa­thy and remorse while watch­ing the news: look what we did to our­selves. We real­ly nev­er learn, do we?

  1. An inter­est­ing read…if you believe in rein­car­na­tion.
    As a Chris­t­ian, I believe dif­fer­ent­ly.
    The Bible says it is appoint­ed unto man once to die, and then the judg­ment.
    I guess part of the beau­ty of God is He allows every­one to believe what they want to believe, whether the truth or a lie. He does tell us that that His peo­ple die because of a lack of knowl­edge, and to not let your­self be deceived. There are con­se­quences for fol­low­ing a false reli­gion. He expos­es every­one to the truth, it is up to them whether they wish to accept the truth, or to fol­low a lie.

    1. Per­son­al­ly, I believe in liv­ing a good life. I con­sid­er myself an open and devel­oped per­son with a con­scious mind, friend­ly spir­it and open heart. If not believ­ing in a truth does not grant me pas­sage to a post-mortem par­adise, then so be it. At least I can look myself in the mir­ror and say: I did some­thing good.

      You are of course enti­tled to your own beliefs, and as long as they are not hurt­ing any­one, I tend to respect those. But please do con­sid­er that the con­tent of His Word has been heav­i­ly edit­ed. For exam­ple: the addi­tion of pur­ga­to­ry.

      What­ev­er the case, I wish you a good day.

  2. Great, not much into the lit­er­al side, but I am not-very-well-stud­ied in the sub­ject.

    Now in the philo­soph­i­cal side, that’s a whole oth­er sto­ry. CSB!

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