Understanding Our Existence
Think about it. We live in a basic plane of existence. Going through the motions everyday, basic tasks over and over again. What is the possibility of other realms, other planes of existence, other universes, and dimensions? I want to study the idea of different theories of how life and the world works. How are we just on this planet, just randomly coming into life? (Side note, I am an atheist, so some of my opinions may not necessarily line up with yours. I encourage you to read this article still, as it is interesting to at least ponder.)
The idea of Heaven and Hell
While Christianity is one of the most popular religions that many people practice, what does it truly mean? The idea that it is so binary, either Heaven and Hell, and that you are just sorted after death into the afterlife, how did so many people suddenly begin following this type of ideology? While many other religions besides Christianity also practice this theory, Christianity is probably the most prevalent that I can think of. I will be only focusing on Christianity in this article, as it would be a lot more reading to analyze many different religions and ideologies. So, while we have books like the Bible, many historical sites, and different events that seem to prove God's existence, what’s the whole point?
If God has this amazing afterlife plane of existence for us, why would he even waste our time by placing us on this planet in the first place?
Christianity teaches that you have to “keep the faith” and believe without much concrete evidence that relates to you to help you comprehend the difficult idea of existence in the first place.
Reality is a difficult concept that I struggle to understand. From what I have based my ideologies around is that we are the universe experiencing itself from one specific perspective. But how did the planets come to form, how did time begin?
From looking at the Christian religion nowadays, it has been weaponized against groups of people to discriminate. That’s just the plain fact. It has become a way for the LGBT+ community to be continually harassed under the law's protection.
And not only this, but Christianity has also amassed so many followers that no one even acknowledges that other ideologies are on this planet, other people that believe other things. So if Christianity is it, if Heaven and Hell really exist and we will be judged after death, why is it what it is today? If Christians followed how they were supposed to live according to their sacred Bible, then the world we live in would be a much different place.
I grew up in the Bible belt that is the South, and I still live here. Upstate South Carolina. And the number of people that are even discriminative of others within their own community, the amount of negativity, it really seems like it is time for another Noah’s Arc situation where God floods the Earth to kill all the sinners. Because it sure seems like we are full of ’em.
My other problem with Christianity is that I can’t comprehend that if a God is watching over us constantly and practically affecting all aspects of our life, how has the world's state ended up this bad? Why do people get horrible diseases, why do people have mental illnesses (and I hate to sound like a broken record repeating what everyone else says), but why has 2020 been one of the worst years probably on record?
With all of my personal caveats of Christianity and the binary logic that is Heaven and Hell, I have determined to make an educated decision to choose to be an atheist. At the same time, though, I do not think of any Christians or any other members of any religions or ideologies as bad or stupid. We all are looking for a way to explain the human condition, explaining how we got on this earth, a way of justifying living each day in our own monotonous ways.
Possibilities of other realms or planes of existence
So doctors have said that the basic human, on average, only uses about 10% of their brain. If we were able to unlock more portions of our brain somehow, we would discover things past what our eyes can see. Reportedly, people have recounted that various drugs have changed their entire outlook on life or rituals they can use to contact different realms. While this may sound outlandish or like crazy-talk, if you're reading this far, you are probably past the point of caring about logic.
I think that certain drugs like LSD and other hallucinogens, alcohol, and marijuana can extend a person's mental capabilities and hallucinations or an altered state of reality are people unlocking new realms or dimensions that they were otherwise unable to see.
While I do not condone drug use, in a controlled environment or with proper care, certain drugs like LSD and marijuana (which are both non-addictive) should be tried by everyone at least once (in a controlled environment and age). They can have an opportunity to allow you to see what the world looks like to you, and you can make decisions on how you feel about ideologies and such.
I think of existence as a blessing and a curse. Many a time, I have hated living, suffering from mental illness and stress. But at the same time, I have been able to sit down and really try and comprehend the idea of expanding my mind and thinking capabilities. And I do believe that these other planes are beautiful and amazing. And for a reason, too, as the universe wants us to experience it.
Ideas like capitalism, freedom, and existence are all conflicting. Why do we do the things we do every day? Why are we just required to need to make money to survive? Why can’t we all live in harmony and experience the universe from our own individual perspectives.
The word sonder
I like to think about the word sonder. If you have never heard it before, here's the definition:
sonder — n. the realization that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own — populated with their own ambitions, friends, routines, worries and inherited craziness — an epic story that continues invisibly around you like an anthill sprawling deep underground, with elaborate passageways to thousands of other lives that you’ll never know existed, in which you might appear only once, as an extra sipping coffee in the background, as a blur of traffic passing on the highway, as a lighted window at dusk.
This is such a mind f***ing single word. Coined by John Koenig, he says,
“Sonder. You are the main character — the protagonist — the star at the center of your own unfolding story. You’re surrounded by your supporting cast: friends and family hanging in your immediate orbit.
Scattered a little further out, a network of acquaintances who drift in and out of contact over the years.
But there in the background, faint and out of focus, are the extras. The random passersby. Each living a life as vivid and complex as your own.
They carry on invisibly around you, bearing the accumulated weight of their own ambitions, friends, routines, mistakes, worries, triumphs, and inherited craziness.
When your life moves on to the next scene, theirs flickers in place, wrapped in a cloud of backstory and inside jokes and characters strung together with countless other stories you’ll never be able to see. That you’ll never know exists.”
As I close the article, I wanted to leave you with this single word. This is what has made me write this article in the first place. To spark thought in other's minds, of what could be out there. There is no one answer, no concrete evidence, but it’s out there. And it is waiting to be discovered as we extend our thought. Thank you so much for listening to me standing on my soapbox, and I hope you can take a bit to sit and comprehend what existing means to you, what planes of existence you think you could find. And enjoy being a special piece of the universe, experiencing itself.