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Eternal Life Is Impossible

Discussion in 'Science and Religion' started by Salvador, May 17, 2015.

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  1. Yes, I believe eternal life is possible.

    7 vote(s)
    70.0%
  2. No, eternal life is impossible.

    3 vote(s)
    30.0%
  1. Salvador

    Salvador RF's Swedenborgian

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    Human consciousness won't exist beyond the stellar era where the last remaining nebulae have been consumed by the final generation of stars in a vastly cold, dark and empty universe. The last surviving star will have exhausted all its nuclear fuel and become a white dwarf star that will then eventually cool down to a black dwarf star which no longer emits any substantial light or heat. The protons of planets and black dwarf stars will then eventually decay into subatomic particles. When all the protons have deteriorated into free leptons, then the only other remaining matter will be photons and neutrinos. Only extremely low energy photons, electrons, positrons and neutrinos will exist in the final phase of our universe. Each particle will rarely if ever interact with any other particle. There will be no events to mark the passage of time. Coherent structures, objects, sources of energy or sinks of energy will have ceased to exist. The universe will have then achieved its state of maximum entropy. Indeed, our universe is structured in such a way as to reach a state of thermal equilibrium where any life won't exist. Because of the second law of thermodynamics, the possibility of eternal life is zero. Life is very temporary, so please do enjoy it while it lasts.
     
  2. Twilight Hue

    Twilight Hue The gentle embrace of twilight has become my guide

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    In one aspect your correct but considering that enternalisim can arguably span the past as much as the future, it leaves a small pinprick in the cosmos called probabilities.

    Life already happened. It will therefore happen again I'll wager in light the impossibility of life being possible at all has been extinguished. ;0]
     
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  3. George-ananda

    George-ananda Advaita Vedanta, Theosophy, Spiritualism
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    I come from a non-materialist perspective. I believe consciousness is One, fundamental and eternal. The material universe is the play of the One/God/Brahman consciousness. From my study of the so-called 'paranormal' I am convinced that consciousness can exist without a physical body. And beyond that, the sages/mystics I respect most say only consciousness is real; the rest will fade away as illusion upon enlightenment.
     
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  4. ben d

    ben d Being

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    The universe is eternal...never had a beginning and will never have an ending....but all the manifested things have beginnings and endings...

    Wrt science, it is far from settled on the matters of which you speak....
     
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  5. cuvtixo

    cuvtixo New Member

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    What a fun question! Yes, as ben d says, this is just the latest hypothesis from observable scientific data. If other, earlier ideas about the "Big Crunch" could also be true, and perhaps even the "Big Crunch" is the event that brings about the "Big Bang" in an eternal loop of time. The end of the universe could quite conceivably, from all the latest known scientific physics data, be the "cause" of the beginning, which would make anything other than "eternal life" impossible. All life would be eternal, making the whole problem one of semantics. And that's just one possibility. Also from all scientific data available, the "Big Freeze" won't happen for trillions of years, during which there will be a time of "Iron Stars" (when almost all the known mass of the stars will have turned to iron), and black holes, and this state will be incredibly good for computer processing- just like the amount of heat generated by computer chips puts limits on practical uses (you can't have a laptop of phone burning people's skin), any coolness for data information processing will be good. Now just imagine how much technology has advanced in the past hundred years and try (just try!) to imagine hundreds and thousands of years from now. Certainly we should be able to transfer consciousness out of biological brains into a medium(s) more suitable to extreme cold. We could harness the slowing of time itself near black holes to stretch out the last trillions of years into trillions more.
    In short, these aren't a question of religion at all, nor even of science. Note I'm a skeptic about God, and don't believe in the power of prayer at all. If there are any beings or consciousnesses that listen or grant the wishes or prayers of living humans, they're not "God" as we think of Him. So I'm just an idea or two away from atheism. And yet I still think the "scientific" hypothesis about the end of the universe is too silly to be seriously contemplated. You have more right to think of the conversion of the sun into a "Red Giant" star being the doom of life as we know it, and that only a few million years away, far shorter than "eternity", or the limits of the life of the universe by any modern physics. As humans we can hardly conceive of a hundred years of life, and not 150 years. Could anyone 140 years ago imagine even their own life on Earth as it is now? More specifically 2000 years ago? It's embarrassing when scientific "skeptics" use science as clumsily as the most simple minded Christians use the "New Testament". Just sayin' (but I regret it, I assumed I wouldn't have followup readership actually. Sorry, I'm usually not so bitter or angry)
     
    #5 cuvtixo, Aug 10, 2018
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2018
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  6. Salvador

    Salvador RF's Swedenborgian

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    Thanks for the reply. Lately, I've not given much thought about my mortality. I'm just living life to the fullest from one moment to the next. I suppose things for me will be the same after my demise as they were before my birth, and there's nothing anybody can do to change that.
     
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  7. cuvtixo

    cuvtixo New Member

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    Well, you're wiser than I gave you credit for. You're absolutely right about how to live your life in the present, at least in my opinion. ''unfortunately,
    i give waaayyy too much of my time to thinking about technological and physics alternatives in the future, because my life in the present is fairly miserable. I may yet find a Buddhist temple to retreat to, or else our political leaders will bring the nuclear end of the world I've imagined for over 25 years. Jesus is about 2000 years too late in my opinion and I'm mad about it
     
  8. ben d

    ben d Being

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    Not late if your read Daniel 3 and note that the government of the last kingdom, one that is part iron and part clay whereby the clay won't bond to the iron, is a two party system. This is a description of contemporary left - right politics, and there is no way the left will cooperate with Trump and vice versa, Trump may be the very catalyst to bring the whole structure down. If my reading is correct, then the white stone (2nd Jesus Christ coming) presence must be waxing.
     
  9. Sir Doom

    Sir Doom Cooler than most of you

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    My thing went off. Oh! Heat-death and Red Giants. Doom by another name... Le sigh!

    We'll likely outgrow this doomed rock long before the sun finally eats it. We'll probably make it a galactic holiday and force alien employers to give us the day off.

    Heat-death, however... I don't know if a few trillion years is enough to dodge that one. Doooooooom!
     
  10. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    Wow, there are not many rays of sunshine in this thread. :(

    As a Bible believer, I see the OPs original statement to be correct.
    Eternal life is not possible for humans because human life has a beginning. Eternal means no beginning or end.

    Yet, everlasting life (as opposed to eternal life) is a distinct possibility. How do we know this? And where were humans supposed to live everlastingly?

    God created humans as mortal beings on earth with the promise that if they obeyed his commands, they would be able to partake of the "tree of life" in the garden and "live forever" (Genesis 3:22-24). In order to eat from this tree, Adam and his wife had to refrain from eating from the other tree. (The tree of the knowledge of good and bad) One tree meant death, and the other, life. By partaking of the prohibited fruit, they were banned from accessing the one tree that would keep them alive forever.

    Most Christians never understand that there was no savior, or redemption, or kingdom required in the beginning. These only became necessary after humans rebelled and stole something that belonged exclusively to their Creator. So the original purpose of man's existence was to act as caretakers for the planet and for all the creatures that God had placed here. Only man was given God's moral qualities to act as his representatives. Only man was given the opportunity to live forever. There was no natural cause of death ever mentioned.

    Also, Adam was not given a "heaven or hell" scenario.....he was given a simple choice between life and death. He chose to join his wife in disobedience and its to pay its penalty, death.....and the loss of access to that "tree of life" meant that death would overtake them....and their children as well. (Romans 5:12) Sin would now make their decisions more difficult for them. This was demonstrated very clearly when, within one generation, we see the first murderer emerge. Sinful humans have been suffering the consequences, ever since.

    We know what happened, but imagine the scenario if they had obeyed....?

    What would living forever on earth mean for them if there was no death from any cause? Have you ever thought about it? As we all have free will, Adam and his wife could have chosen differently.

    Imagine........no sickness, no aging, no suffering or pain....and no death. We will yet achieve this according to the the Revelation given to the apostle John. This is why Jesus came....to get us back what Adam lost for his children.

    " 2 I also saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God and prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 With that I heard a loud voice from the throne say: “Look! The tent of God is with mankind, and he will reside with them, and they will be his people. And God himself will be with them. 4 And he will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore. The former things have passed away.”
    5 And the One seated on the throne said: “Look! I am making all things new.” Also he says: “Write, for these words are faithful and true.”
    (Revelation 21:2-5)

    Everlasting life is not only possible, but inevitable IMV because it was all part of God's purpose in creating the earth in the first place. (Isaiah 55:11) :)
     
  11. cuvtixo

    cuvtixo New Member

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    I'm gonna push back on this, mostly because you use the phrase "Bible believer" and "most Christians" a little carelessly. Last first; Adam was not given ANY scenario; not ANY penalty. In Genesis, neither Adam nor Eve is given information about any punishment, just the command to not eat the fruit; so to talk of them "choosing death" is not biblical at all. It's just an interpretation you believe.
    What's up with "And the Lord God said, 'Behold, the man is become as one of Us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the Tree of Life, and eat, and live for ever'” Gen 3:22 ? Um, that sound's like He didn't want Adam and Eve, nor anyone else, to live forever at all. It sounds like jealousy! I guess you can say "Us" is Father and Son, but that's not clear and wouldn't have been clear to the Jews for thousands of years. It's really a strange proclamation.
    And it doesn't say anything about Adam and Eve having children before the expulsion. Was God eventually going to let them eat from the Tree of Life? Because Genesis doesn't mention that, either. Maybe they'd eventually be allowed to eat, live forever, and Eve would never have children, and neither would she (nor female descendants) ever difficult and painful childbirth? "So the original purpose of man's existence was to act as caretakers for the planet" Biblically, just the Garden of Eden. Nothing is said about the rest of the planet. I'm not sure about the original Hebrew, but King James uses the word "Dominion" over the animals. As much as I'd like to encourage Christians to think of themselves as caretakers of the Earth; I think Genesis here is just permitting people to kill and even torture any wildlife they want. A Hebrew scholar might convince me otherwise, but no one with an English Bible is going to.
    "Only man was given God's moral qualities to act as his representatives." Well, the Tree is the "Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil". It certainly sounds like "man" wasn't given any moral qualities at all. In fact it's rather weird to for God to make a statement (to who? Not Adam or Eve) that they've gained knowledge of good and evil AFTER eating the fruit. How were they supposed to be good and not eat the fruit without this knowledge? How could they be sinful without knowledge of evil? This is the kind of thing that gives me doubt about anyone who claims to be a "Bible believer" You've got contradictory information right in the first book of the Bible! You can't logically believe this, or the other contradictions in the Bible especially books that contradict one another. You have to doubt some of the Scriptures, even if you believe the vast majority.
     
    #11 cuvtixo, Aug 11, 2018
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2018
  12. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    Are you a Bible believer cuvtixo? Do you consider yourself a Christian? How much Bible knowledge do you believe you have, to make the kind of judgments you express here?

    Genesis 2:15-17...."Jehovah God took the man and settled him in the garden of Eʹden to cultivate it and to take care of it. 16 Jehovah God also gave this command to the man: “From every tree of the garden you may eat to satisfaction. 17 But as for the tree of the knowledge of good and bad, you must not eat from it, for in the day you eat from it you will certainly die.”

    So do you see the clearly stated penalty for disobeying the only negative command there was....death? Adam chose the sin and so did his wife.....and they both eventually paid the stated penalty. They died spiritually that day and physically began to die as well.

    Oh dear. God said this....when? After the pair had both eaten the forbidden fruit. What does the rest of that scripture says?

    "Jehovah God then said: “Here the man has become like one of us in knowing good and bad. Now in order that he may not put his hand out and take fruit also from the tree of life and eat and live forever,—” 23 With that Jehovah God expelled him from the garden of Eʹden to cultivate the ground from which he had been taken. 24 So he drove the man out, and he posted at the east of the garden of Eʹden the cherubs and the flaming blade of a sword that was turning continuously to guard the way to the tree of life."

    The Bible makes it clear that God created all things through the agency of his son (Colossians 1:13-17) The "Us" is God addressing his "Master workman". (Proverbs 8:30-31)
    You have to take passages of scripture in context because not to do so fails to get at the truth. It can be very misleading. You are so far off track that you aren't even in the same ball park.

    After saying that the humans had taken it upon themselves to "know good and bad" God expelled them from the garden...why? To prevent them from accessing the tree of life and to prevent them from having all the fruit they wanted because God had provided so bountifully for them...and this is the thanks he gets. Now they will have to eke out an existence on cursed ground because they proved to be ungrateful and selfish. God had given them so much, but had asked so little in return. The ensuing object lesson would set precedents that would last forever concerning the appropriate use of free will.

    To reinforce the punishment, he stationed angels and' the flaming blade of a sword' to make doubly sure that they did not ever take anything belonging to God again.
    Try to pay attention...or at least try reading the Bible before you post complete nonsense. OK?

    They did not have children before they were expelled. But they were told to before they sinned. It was right after their creation.....

    Genesis 1:27-28..."And God went on to create the man in his image, in God’s image he created him; male and female he created them. 28 Further, God blessed them, and God said to them: “Be fruitful and become many, fill the earth and subdue it, and have in subjection the fish of the sea and the flying creatures of the heavens and every living creature that is moving on the earth.”

    Do you understand their purpose?

    There was no prohibition on the tree of life at all in the beginning. It was obviously there to give them the physical ability never to die. Perhaps it needed to be eaten every day? The Bible does not tell us. But once they became sinful, God was never going to allow flawed humans to live forever. The "trees of life" are not mentioned again until the Revelation....so they will feature in our future if we obey God like Adam and his wife should have.

    As you can see in Genesis 1:27-28, they were to fill the earth, not just the Garden.

    I am not a fan of the KJV...there are so many other superior translations. No one speaks archaic English anymore.

    Dominion is not domination.....just to make that clear.
    The Jewish Tanach renders Genesis 1:28..."And God blessed them, and God said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and rule over the fish of the sea and over the fowl of the sky and over all the beasts that tread upon the earth. "

    It was rulership of the earth and its creatures that God originally offered to humankind. Nothing there to say they had a right to abuse any of them. Only a sick person would want to. They were endowed with God's moral qualities so that they would treat the earth and its inhabitants was God himself would.

    Again, you have not read the scriptures well but somehow put your own slant on things.

    The tree of the knowledge of good and evil represented God's right as Sovereign to set reasonable limits for his human creation. They knew what obedience meant and they knew what death was. They had a superior intellect and Adam was educated by his God for some time before the woman was created. She was presented to him as a wife and it was his job to educate her. He had obviously told his wife about taking the forbidden fruit as a priority, because she repeated God's command to the devil when he tempted her, but she too knew what obedience was and she too knew the penalty before she ate.

    Did they become "like God" after eating the fruit, knowing good and bad? Or did humankind rather fail miserably for the rest of their existence, careening from one disaster to another because they didn't really know the difference? That is what the fruit represented....God's right to set the standard. Humans thought they could do better, so God allowed them to reap what they sowed. Its been a disaster ever since.

    I'm afraid it is you who have the contradictions, not the Bible.....so unless you do your homework and actually demonstrate that you have some knowledge about the subject, perhaps it is better not to showcase your lack of knowledge. Ask questions by all means but please don't make statements you can't back up.

    The Bible does not contradict itself. A book from God never could since he is its author. Any discrepancies are minor scribal errors and do not affect the Bible's overall integrity. I have had enough of these conversations to know that there are no real contradictions.....just misinterpretations, as you have demonstrated in this reply. :(
     
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  13. cuvtixo

    cuvtixo New Member

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    If you can stay in the now, and minimize thoughts of the future (which, for all of us, are bound to be mostly incorrect anyways) or the past, which none of us can change or do anything about, that is the "Eternal Now," on an experiential level if nothing else. You can dismiss that sentiment as word trickery, semantics, the highest truth of Zen, or any other religion, fortune cookie material, or dialogue for Yoda. Maybe that's even what Jesus was getting at. "Living life to the fullest" moment by moment, that's good enough to qualify as eternity to me. When you can do that, you've transcended time. I think you've already figured it out. You've "grokked it," as Heinlein fans might say. It's just up to you and me to live up to that ideal. Right now what I can do is acknowledge and affirm your words and compassion. Because I believe living in the now and total compassion is synonymous. I'll risk ridicule and say to you, "Namaste."
     
  14. cuvtixo

    cuvtixo New Member

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    I haven't read your entire post, as I'm too tired right now. But as far as the last point... you can just Google "contradictions in the Bible" as I have, or even look up Internal consistency of the Bible - Wikipedia. The latter doesn't necessarily back up my point of view, but it enumerates all the issues I refer too, brought up by more eloquent and knowledgeable scholars. My favorite, New Testament scholar, agnostic and author Dr. Bart D. Ehrman has written several articles and even books on the subject. And yes, I too consider myself an agnostic, not a Christian. I was raised in the Catholic tradition and educated by Jesuits. I was even encouraged to consider priesthood in high school as a promising student, so I'm not as ignorant of Scripture as you might assume the average Catholic might be.
    Fortunately for me, it's your job as a Christian to convince others of the truth of the Bible, not mine. As an agnostic, my teachers say I can sit back and express skepticism just about the opening story of Genesis. The talking snake alone is enough to justify that no one should bother studying the Bible at all! On many other areas of debate you can dismiss alternative interpretations as "ignorant" and that I need to back up my side. But as far as I can tell, your scriptures command you to take responsibility to try and make the case for the Bible. You can certainly give up after a nominal attempt, but as far as I am concerned, I can make my case (I'll repeat for emphasis) in two words. Talking serpent.
     
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  15. osgart

    osgart Nothing my eye, Something for sure

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    The asymmetry between matter and antimatter will eventually end, and all things will cancel each other out. So whatever caused the imbalance will be all thats left of the universe. And perhaps the cycle will happen all over again. The pendulum swings.

    The volume of all things in the universe will turn out to be finite. Which makes me wonder what lies outside of all this stuff of the universes. Eternal life? The great beyond. Pure perpetual energy.

    Non existence doesn't exist. From non existence nothing comes.
     
  16. ben d

    ben d Being

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    ^ But whenever matter and anti-matter annihilate each other, they are just transformed into energy, how is that energy going to made to not exist, apart from transforming back into matter again?
     
  17. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    I would appreciate your thoughts on the content of my previous post. There was quite a bit that I responded to, showing you that there is more than one view of things.

    Been there, done that.....unless you have something specific to discuss, it is a fruitless exercise. There are no real contradictions, only misinterpretations or minor scribal errors of no consequence.

    Well, that explains a lot. Your lack of scriptural knowledge is rather obvious. It has been my experience over many years of teaching the Bible to others, (one on one in a private setting) that unfortunately Catholic education in the Bible has been rather appalling in the past. Catholic religious education I found was based more on learning Catholic tradition and ritual, rather than scripture. If you consider yourself more educated in scripture than the average Catholic, then I'm afraid that doesn't put you too high up on the scale.....sorry. :(

    Fortunately for me, that is not true. It is my job as a Christian to deliver a message......I am just a messenger. What people do with the message is actually up to them. I am just a 'planter and waterer'....it is God who makes the seed of truth grow....not me. (1 Corinthians 3:6-8) :)
     
    #17 Deeje, Aug 12, 2018
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  18. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    This deserves its own response.....

    Since the Bible is the story about an incredibly powerful being who was capable of creating the entire universe, why would a talking snake throw you?

    What do you think angels are? Hint....they aren't fairies. They were created long before humans.

    Looking at the scenario in Genesis, and gleaning information from other scripture, we can fill in a few of the blanks.

    For example, we know that angels can materialize. Imagine....there are beings who are called spirits (meaning that they are not material creatures) who can take on the form of whatever they please. In order to deliver communication from the Creator to his human servants, these beings often appeared in human form. There are several occasions mentioned in the Bible. I can elaborate if you wish.

    The prophet Ezekiel was told to write a dirge to the King of Tyre.
    In that dirge there are certain statements that clearly apply to satan and his role in man's beginnings, identifying him as a "covering cherub" in the garden of Eden. (Ezekiel 28:11-19) A once perfect and trusted angel who turned traitor.
    That puts the angel who became the devil right there. Placed in a position of responsibility by God to take care of the humans. Apparently that angel began to envy the worship that God was receiving from these lower beings....and he plotted a way to get the humans to give him the worship he wanted. All he had to do was separate them from their God by lying to them, assassinating God's character, and making himself out to be "an angel of light"....a good guy. (2 Corinthians 11:14-15)

    We do not know if these guardians were in materialized form...the Bible does not tell us. They had appeared in human form when visiting Abraham and also when evacuating Lot and his family from Sodom. Angels were also stationed at the entrance to the Garden after their their expulsion.

    But Eve was a relative newcomer on the scene. Not as educated as her husband who had been taught by his God for some time before he was presented with a mate. A snake was not threatening (because at that time no animals were predatory and posed no danger to humans) It apparently did not occur to her to question it.

    Targeting the woman when she was alone was calculated because the devil's real target was the man. Had he approached Adam directly, there was a real possibility of rejection, so he used the woman, (for whom Adam had waited a very long time) to force him to choose to either obey his God and lose his wife or join her and die with her. Divide and conquer is still one of the devil's favorite tactics.

    And the rest, as they say....is history.

    I have researched this scenario thoroughly, so I know it holds up scripturally. All you have to do is put the pieces together. The picture is not so far fetched IMO.
     
    #18 Deeje, Aug 12, 2018
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2018
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  19. Audie

    Audie Veteran Member

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    In religionism, anything anyone makes up is proven truth.
     
  20. Audie

    Audie Veteran Member

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    Bible believers with their rationalizations display behaviour
    much like battered wife syndrome.
     
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