Life After Death notes

Notes made on the Life after Death topic of RS03 Edexcel Religious Studies

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  • Created on: 15-04-16 13:45
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Life after death -Bodily Resurrection
Life after death is to discuss whether there is a post-mortem existence
Theory that the mind is inseparable from the body.
Mind and body are linked together to form one entity
Human beings are psychophysical unities
Monists will only support life after death if it concerns physical survival (i.e Bodily Resurrection)
Identity of person is linked to physical body
Our mental activity is caused by neurone activity (mind and body working as one)
There is no physical evidence for the existence of `a soul'
Supports our knowledge of the physical world
Does not support theistic view of afterlife (resurrection, reincarnation etc.)
No sense of purpose in our earthly life no incentive
Morality becomes meaningless as the soul doesn't live on
No explanation for things which only occur in the mind. (e.g love, joy, fear)
Reductionistic theory idea that everything we do is physical = absurd. Is `love' really just the
behaviour of kissing?
John Hick `Replica' theory
If someone died and appeared in another place with the same memories and physical features,
then it would be meaningful to regard this replica as the same person because they would be
conscious of being the same person as the one who had earlier died
Background to Hick
We develop our morals and the choice to develop a relationship with God
The soul needs a body so that it can continue into the afterlife
The soul changes and become in the likeness of God
The body and soul = inseparable
Eschatological answer: We are provided with an explanation for evil in the earthly life. After
death likeness of God
Supports Monism
A Replica
`Replica' = us in a perfect state.
The location of a replica is not on earth.
The Replica is not the same as a copy, there is only one replica and it is the real you.
We can't have thousands of copies as to be human is to be an individual.
The Resurrection of the Person
The resurrection is the creation of `replica' by God in a different space.
His Replica Theory shows that resurrection is a divine action in which an exact `replica' of
ourselves is created in a different place.
A world of resurrection is logically possible as it is not spatially related to our world.

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Reassurance that there is life after death
There will be an answer to life problems (Eschatological answer)
The concept of an afterlife, where replicas are observed is perfect
Some propose the idea of multiple replicas but then the individually of the replica is lost.…read more

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The theory that the mind and body are two separate and distinct entities which exist
independently of the other, but can influence the other.
Humans consist of composite natures. Partly Material (physical body) and Partly NonMaterial
Descartes: The body is spatial but not conscious. Mind is non spatial but with feelings and
thoughts. They are two separate entities but interact with each other through the workings of the
The Physical body eventually dies but the Soul lives on.…read more

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Philosophers, though, are like the man who escapes the cave and sees the real world. They have
true knowledge.
Myth of Er
Found at the end of `The Republic'
Plato tells of a soldier, Er, who was killed on the battlefield. After 10 days his body showed no
signs of decomposition.…read more

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Hugh Montefione (The Paranormal a Bishop investigates): `Something very specific when
occur when people are near to death or think themselves to be. It is not uncommon for people to
have out of the ordinary experience when they are in situations close to death'
Pleasurable NDEs
Involve mostly feelings of love, joy, peace and bliss. No pain is involved.
"Classic" pleasurable NDE includes 4 phases that tend to happen in a certain order:
Disassociated: no longer feel associated with their physical bodies.…read more

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Bad actions: produce suffering for people and are motivated by aggression.
Four types of Karmic effects
Maximum/fully ripened an action motivated by hatred will cause rebirth in hell.…read more

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At the final hour people will hear the sound of trumpets and all people from past and present
will be gathered in front of God.
Those who have lived virtuous lives are to be rewarded with entrance into the `garden beneath
which rivers flow' perceived to be Heaven (Jannah)
Those who have lived wicked lives are punished in Hellfire (Jahannam)
The angel of death removes the soul from the body, immediately at the time of death.…read more


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