What If Your Consciousness Never Dies?

One of the ultimate insults of death is that by permanently losing consciousness one can’t appreciate the glorious fact that one is finally at total peace, free of all of life’s trials and tribulations, or at least that would seem to be the case.

I mean when consciousness is permanently lost, it’s as if neither you nor the universe ever existed — ever. This is because our base ego mind is hardwired to see us as being the center of everything. Of course our intellect tries hard to dispute this primitive egocentrism, but not very successfully with some folks. One Donald J. Trump comes to mind as the poster child on this account.

Some folks try and reinforce their egocentrism by wrapping themselves in elaborate religious fantasies or hare-brained conspiracy theories that serve as distractions from life’s harsh realities.

But the worst possible nightmare of all is that consciousness may never die. It merely transfers to another life form. In other words physical death can’t really kill off consciousness. Well, if you think that is absurd, think of those millions of Christians who can’t waited to get to heaven and spend all eternity with Jesus — even though many would prefer that his Jewish descendants not be members of their local country clubs. But I digress.

I guess some would call this notion of consciousness transference the reincarnation theory. But in any event when one really thinks about it, consciousness is a hard concept to wrap one’s mind around. I mean if, say, one has an identical twin brother and every physical part of the two of you is the same, you may share many similar interests and what not, but you still are not experiencing the world through the same consciousness. If he dies you’re still just as aware of things around you as when he was alive.

If you think I’m going in circles here you would be right. For if consciousness can’t be shared, then how in the world can it be transferable? Our rational intellect would say that when we die all of us dies. Yet I can’t shake the feeling that, like undetectable dark matter and dark energy, there is something inexplicable going on with individual consciousness. I mean it’s not a tangible, touchable thing, but it’s there somewhere. The remaining question is whether or not it is always somewhere forever, which could be a very scary proposition, indeed.

Jim Ridgway, Jr. military writer — author of the American Civil War classic, “Apprentice Killers: The War of Lincoln and Davis.” Christmas gift, yes!

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