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After We Die

Updated on December 20, 2014

Do you believe there is a Heaven?

Does Heaven exist?
Does Heaven exist? | Source

Written May 2012 by Anne DiGeorge (awordlover)

Published February 2014 by Rachael O'Halloran for Anne DiGeorge

Updated 12/21/2014 with Dr. Raymond Moody video at end of article.

What do you think?

After we die, where do you think we go?

See results

"No one knows when that day or hour will come .. except for the Father."

An essay of observations and reflections by awordlover (Anne DiGeorge)

"Time of Death ... 3:12AM"

I can't tell you how many times I have either said that or heard it in my professional life. I also don't know why people have to die at 3AM but they do. I worked third shift (11PM to 7AM or 7PM to 7AM) in hospitals and nursing homes for over 30 years. Same shift, different place. The old saying about things going bump in the night can be well attested to by health care professionals who work third shift.

Unless one has insider knowledge, most of us do not know the date or time of our death. Sure, doctors can guestimate if you have a terminal illness and sometimes they can be darn close. But there are just as many stories from patients where doctors have missed the mark, sometimes by years. But I'm talking about normal healthy people.

You will never know if a drunk driver speeding through a red light two blocks ahead will be the one that hits your car broadside and kills you instantly. If you had foreknowledge, you'd probably pull over or take a different route, right? And who knows if that different route would put another whole set of cause and effect laws in place?

You will never know when a routine surgery will go very wrong, either due to a traveling blood clot, bad reaction to anesthesia, or surgeon error. If you knew in advance, you might choose not to have that surgery, right? Well, who knows if months or years down the line, if that decision against surgery would have led to a bigger health issue. We don't know. It's all a crapshoot.

I often wondered if we did know the exact time, date, and place of death if we would want to know.

For me, I never want to know. I think it would seriously impact the way I live my life, causing me to approach many happy occasions morbidly and put a damper on things for others. While it is true that I have Multiple Sclerosis, Crohn's Disease and a brain tumor that has to be reduced periodically, my doctors have never given me a prognosis in months or years. I have never looked at any of these ailments as a death sentence. I look at these things as just excess baggage that I carry around with me. As I'm fond of saying, I can still walk, talk and chew gum at the same time. lol

I think in the grand scheme of things, there are so many good reasons why the Book of Life has that last page torn out of it.

Other than people who will find nefarious ways to profit (like taking out large life insurance policies on a relative, for example), I think one of the reasons we don't know is so we will not be preoccupied with the end of life that we miss out on the enjoyment of living our life.

In my line of work, unfortunately I faced death every day until my retirement five years ago. To be in attendance of people who are dying is truly an eye opening experience. Each person experiences death differently; some people die peacefully, some are violent, some are in and out of coma, some are lucid. It is in the listening, not the talking, to these people that reinforced why I view death much differently now than I did as I was growing up in the 1950s and 1960s. Back then, it was a very scary thought.

I guess I have always wondered "What happens after we die?"

Pondering thoughts while taking in nature

contemplation added 3/22/2014
contemplation added 3/22/2014 | Source

1 minute duration: Here's what some people believe happens after we die.

Choose one:

What do you hope happens after you die?

See results

The Five People You Meet In Heaven

Mitch Albom quote Added 3/22/2014
Mitch Albom quote Added 3/22/2014 | Source

No God?

I could never wrap my head around some people's concept that there is no God.

I think I am even offended when people write it with a small "g" like this "god," because God should be revered, in my opinion, which includes a capital "G."

However, if you are like Stephen Hawking in the next video and don't believe there is a God, then am I to assume your views of what happens after you die is just as negative?

Note from Rachael 2/9/2014: Link added for interview: As a scientist, Hawking has long said that there is no God who created the earth and, that if there is no God who created the earth, then there is no God or Heaven. Share your thoughts after you read the following interview and view the video.

Here's the link to the interview:

Famous physicist Stephen Hawking - He's says there is no God


I don't assume this guy talks for all atheists, but I did view quite a few You Tube videos before choosing this one. His philosophy is pretty much what most of the others say. His video is to the point and just happens to also be the shortest one, which is what I look for when I'm choosing videos for my hubs.

2 minute video - What atheists think will happen when they die.

Edgar Cayce & A.R.E. Center

By age 12, I started reading about reincarnation and delved into the writings of Edgar Cayce. I have been on several trips to the A.R.E. Center in Virginia. By not embracing any one religion, I was open to so many different possibilities. Reading everything I could get my hands on about past life experiences and near death experiences consumed the next 30 years of my life. Reincarnation was the mindset that governed how I approached death from age 16 onward.

I wondered, What did other people believe?

I think If I had remained a staunch Catholic, and not read about different theories, the stories that patients told me of their near death experiences might have met with a very different reception from me. Talking to and listening to patients and holding their hands as they passed from life over to death would most likely have been right out of the Theology textbooks of college.

Instead, I believe I made a difference by lending an ear and helping in peaceful passings. That may be presumptuous on my part because no one has come back from the dead to tell me differently, so I'd like to think I helped in some small way. If anything, they were not alone and that is the best that I can hope for when my time comes.

1 minute Introduction to Edgar Cayce

James Leininger's story

6-year-old James Leininger believes he was a WW II fighter pilot on a mission over the Pacific and was shot down. He told the story so often, his parents finally researched it on the internet to see if any stories matched their son's. They found out that James M. Huston Jr. was shot down by the Japanese during a raid near Iwo Jima on March 3, 1945.

The link gives you some background on James. The video is an update of the story so see if you think this is a case of reincarnation.

Did this child have a past life? Or a vivid dream?

A case of reincarnation?

Do you think James Leiniger was reincarnated from James Huston, a WW II bomber pilot?

See results

Is there a doorway to heaven?

made with pizap added 3/22/2014
made with pizap added 3/22/2014 | Source

The Act of Dying

Are you afraid to die? The actual act of dying, not the pain of it.

See results

Fear of Death

Do you think the majority of people in this world have a fear of death?

See results

Some people believe they will die and come back in new body to correct wrongs they have done. Some people believe they will die and come back as animals.

Some people believe they will die and go to to heaven to wait until the end of time.

Some people believe they will die and come back. Period. Just that they will come back.

Some people believe they will come back as a relative or friend they know in this life and "walk a mile" in their shoes.

Some people believe they will die and come back to experience whatever bad things they ever did to other people.

Some people believe they will die and that they come back in different professions and opposite sex to experience and learn whatever they did not experience and learn in this life.

3 minute video - A neurosurgeon's experience in Heaven

The Dalai Lama's 18 Rules of Living

1. Take into account that great love and great achievements involve great risk.

2. When you lose, don't lose the lesson

3. Follow the three Rs:

  • Respect for self
  • Respect for others
  • Responsibility for all your actions.

4. Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a wonderful stroke of luck.

5. Learn the rules so you know how to break them properly.

6. Don't let a little dispute injure a great friendship.

7. When you realize you've made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it.

8. Spend some time alone every day.

9. Open your arms to change, but don't let go of your values.

10. Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer.

11. Live a good, honourable life. Then when you get older and think back, you'll be able to enjoy it a second time.

12. A loving atmosphere in your home is the foundation for your life.

13. In disagreements with loved ones, deal only with the current situation. Don't bring up the past.

14. Share your knowledge. It's a way to achieve immortality.

15. Be gentle with the earth.

16. Once a year, go someplace you've never been before.

17. Remember that the best relationship is one in which your love for each other exceeds your need for each other.

18. Judge your success by what you had to give up in order to get it.


Here's what Dr Raymond Moody has to say after life after death

Death happens to everyone, so

Why do you think death makes us sad?

See results

What happens after we die?

Is it the end of life, or the beginning of something else?

Some people won't accept that death is final and that there's nothing after this life.

Other people can't wait to get out of this life, so they just help it along.

Still others have been revived from death and tell us of their experiences.

Of course, no one knows for sure. But the beauty of living in this world in the year 2012 is that we can each believe whatever we want and not be condemned for it.

It is always interesting to listen to what people think on this subject - whether you meet them over dinner or hold their hand while they are on their deathbed.

The act of death is not all about religion because some people have never been exposed to religion all their lives. Either their parents never sent them to church or somehow church and religion just didn't factor into their lifestyle.

Everyone has an opinion and I respect that. I was not able to say that in 1971.

What I believe really doesn't have a place here.

This essay is merely to give a few ideas to provoke your thought processes to help you to know where you stand.

Thank you for not copying my article

Please don't copy other people's work. Thank you.
Please don't copy other people's work. Thank you. | Source

Written in May 2012 by awordlover

On 2/7/2014 this hub was updated with links and photos by Rachael O'Halloran.

© 2014 awordlover


Submit a Comment

  • awordlover profile imageAUTHOR


    4 years ago

    #raymondphilippe, It is ecause it is an unknown. People will always speculate, hope, wish, pray, and some will even say with downright conviction exactly what is going to happen to them. It will always be a preoccupation, until it is no longer an unknown.

    By then, it will be known only to those who pass over, and the masses will still be preoccupied with it. Until science proves it, or until someone comes back with real unrefutable proof of life after death, only then can people move on to other things to speculate about that will take up their attention.

    If I were preoccupied with it, I'd miss out on living. I know others feel the same way too. Thank you for your comment, glad you liked the polls, and for your votes.


  • raymondphilippe profile image

    Raymond Philippe 

    4 years ago from The Netherlands

    I enjoyed your hub. But i honestly don't understand why so many people are preoccupied with what happens after death? Voted up and interesting.

    Ps. I enjoyed your polls. Filled them all in.

  • awordlover profile imageAUTHOR


    4 years ago

    Thank you AliciaC for your comment and follow.


  • AliciaC profile image

    Linda Crampton 

    4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

    This is an interesting hub. It concerns a topic that I often think about! Thank you for sharing all the thought-provoking information.

  • awordlover profile imageAUTHOR


    4 years ago

    Thank you, Eddy, for your comment and votes.

  • Eiddwen profile image


    4 years ago from Wales

    A wonderful hub; so interesting, well informed and useful.

    Voted up and now looking forward to so many more.


  • awordlover profile imageAUTHOR


    4 years ago

    teaches12345, I updated this article for awordlover last month to add some videos and better photos. When I first read it, I was intrigued that she had presented a few different ideas people thought about what happens after they die. I am comforted in my own belief that there is a heaven and I'm sure people who believe otherwise are happy with their beliefs too. Thank you for your comment.

  • teaches12345 profile image

    Dianna Mendez 

    4 years ago

    You bring out some interesting thoughts and challenges on death. It does present itself often throughout our lives as people die. The fear of death does not hold such a sting when you know your life was lived well with purpose. I am one that does believe in heaven and eternal life.

  • awordlover profile imageAUTHOR


    4 years ago

    Hi Phyllis, Thank you for visiting and commenting.

  • Phyllis Doyle profile image

    Phyllis Doyle Burns 

    4 years ago from High desert of Nevada.

    I know reincarnation is an actual process of life, spirit, and life again, till we have accomplished all we were meant to achieve and learn. This is an awesome article. Thank you for sharing this.

  • awordlover profile imageAUTHOR


    4 years ago

    FlourishAnyway, thank you for commenting, following and voting.


  • FlourishAnyway profile image


    4 years ago from USA

    I do not profess to know but I like the teachings of the Dalai Lama. I enjoyed this hub -- very thought provoking. Voted up and more.

  • awordlover profile imageAUTHOR


    4 years ago

    Moonlake, thank you for your comment.

  • moonlake profile image


    4 years ago from America

    My husband always says the day your borned it's marked on the wall the day you die. No one can stop it or do a thing about it.

    I hope there is not reincarnation once I'm gone I want to stay gone. Enjoyed your hub voted up.

  • awordlover profile imageAUTHOR


    4 years ago

    SusieQ42, You are not alone in that feeling. Many people feel the same way too. Thank you for your comment and for following.


  • profile image


    4 years ago

    My children's dad passed away nearly 20 years ago. A while back my daughter was referring to him being gone and I said, "he is alive, he just moved to a different place." Great thought provoking hub!

  • awordlover profile imageAUTHOR


    4 years ago

    Barbara Kay, I think Anne (awordlover) was just trying to stimulate the reader's thinking to see where they stand on this subject. In 3 weeks since publishing, this hub hasn't grabbed enough attention either in comments or with readers sharing their views via the polls.

    While Anne didn't usually talk online about her beliefs or religion, I thought that this hub had some interesting concepts about what happens when we die, and that maybe others might want to share their thoughts. The polls are diverse and we can only know what readers think if they leave comments or click on the polls. awordlover died in May 2013. I'm moderating her account because there are a few more hubs left in the queue to be published and answering reader comments. I will soon be starting out on my own on Hubpages. This has been a good training ground for me. Thank you for your visit and comment.


  • Barbara Kay profile image

    Barbara Badder 

    4 years ago from USA

    This was interesting. I'm not ready to die just yet. My husband and children aren't ready to accept it. I wrote a hub about this subject around the same time you did, but it is based on Christian beliefs and asks questions.

  • awordlover profile imageAUTHOR


    4 years ago

    billybuc, I'm with you. I have no fear of death either. When my time comes, I'll go wherever it is meant for me to be. Like some people, I do wonder once in a while, but I don't dwell on these matters. I've got so much more to get done in this world before I have to face the next one.

    One at a time.

    Thank you for your visit and comment.

  • awordlover profile imageAUTHOR


    4 years ago

    Harvest Moon, I did not research this before I published the info the way Anne wrote it. The only thing I did was reword the poll questions and add videos and photos that matched her info. Since your visit, I did a little more research and I have updated the info and included a link regarding Stephen Hawking. Thank you for your comment.


  • billybuc profile image

    Bill Holland 

    4 years ago from Olympia, WA

    I really have no fear of death. I almost died seven years ago; now, instead of worrying about it, I concentrate on making the most of the time I do have during this life. I'll leave the heavier questions to someone else much more intelligent than me. :)

  • Harvest Moon profile image

    Harvest Moon 

    4 years ago from Earth

    Great article! You know, I remember some time ago hearing Stephen Hawking say something that sure sounded like he DOES believe in God. I wish I could remember where so I could link you!

    I thoroughly enjoyed the Dalai Lama segment and thank you for writing such an in-depth, informative article. I can tell that you put a lot of effort into it and that your heart was really involved in the subject! :-)


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