Two Old Codgers

How the World strikes us

Whatever your beliefs, somewhere at the back of your mind is the hope that there is something after you die. It is seems a bit depressing to think that it all comes to a dead stop when this life ends. Well, I have some bad news and good news for you. No facts or hard information, just a theory. Nevertheless it seems as good a theory as any other.

First the bad news. This bit of your existence really does come to an end. We regularly read that He/she/they will be remembered for ever. Not true. If you are Christopher Columbus, Galileo, Julius Caesar, Henry V111 or Adolf Hitler there is a good chance you will be written about and be part of the school curriculum but take a look at an old newsreel shot of a 1920s football match.
Football Crowd
Thousands and thousands of men in flat caps watching their team. There may be a couple still alive, a few hundred will be in the family photograph album, captioned as Uncle Albert or Grandad but remembered forever? - I don’t think so. Any more that Ugg from the stone Age is remembered.

The good news is you don’t need to worry. Once you are gone it isn’t painful and no matter how guilty you feel about the naughty bits of your life, you aren’t going to be stoking the fires of Hell until Kingdom Come.

Try to think back to before you were born, I know it isn’t possible but the thing is, it wasn’t bad good, or
anything for that matter. If the next stage is no worse at least it will be peaceful. No Brexit, no mortgage, no debt, no fear, no worries. For me it will do. Don’t get me wrong, I would much rather be here than there but as far as I can see everybody ends up on the ‘Other side’ so as the old song said "What’s the use of worrying"

(Interesting digression. There are currently about 7 billion people alive today and about 107 billion people have ever lived. This means there are 15 dead people for every person living. (Must be a bit crowded on the other side)

So what’s this ‘Life Everlasting’ thing? You often hear people say "I would just like to be remembered for . . . . . ."
Pie Eating
It may be good deeds, being brilliant at the high jump, scoring 147 at snooker, winning the conker competition, beating the others at a pie eating contest or being a smart, good looking fella’ or gal’. So a bit more good news for you. You will be remembered, perhaps not consciously but every other human you come into contact with will take a bit of you with them. It may be an idea, a good deed, a kind thought, a piece of knowledge, a skill. No matter what, a wee bit will stick.

Let’s make it easy and stick with knowledge. From Ugg chipping away at a piece of stone to a man walking on the moon, is the result of generation after generation passing on information and knowledge, however small with all the bits coming together at one time. Think of all the knowledge needed to launch a space ship - mathematics, chemistry (for the rocket fuel), metallurgy, life support, radio, computers and all the other technological know how.

It couldn’t have happened in the 1800s because all the bits weren’t there. To make the computer we needed electricity, electronics, plastic, cables and hundreds of other snippets of knowledge and skill. Add to that everything else we needed to get lift off and it becomes mind bogglingly complex.
Moon Walk

But what else do you pass on to others? As a youngster I decided quite early that I couldn’t accept the concept of Heaven and Hell. But if I didn’t accept divine retribution, why did I have to be good? Why could I not just go for what I wanted and blow the others? Strangely, I knew that trying to do the ‘Right’ thing was the way to go and I somehow came to the conclusion that the destination for humanity was the general good for all. I also realised there wasn’t a quick fix to change the World. The World changes slowly but my small steps together with thousands of other small steps could change things.

Even a smile rather than a frown or a ‘thank you’ rather than a grunt can change things. Here’s a little experiment I learned from Bill. Next time someone serves you in a restaurant or cafe, break off your conversation, look the person serving you in the eye, smile and say Thank you. At the super market check out, take the receipt, look the check out person in the eye, smile and say Thank you. Sometimes they will ignore you but often their face will change because you have recognised them as a human being rather than someone paid to do a job.

Check Out


Comment on Everlasting Life from William
Like you I never believed in Heaven or the Fires of Hell, well not since I was a child

I’ve always thought that doing the right thing is the Heaven, and doing wrong is Hell, but that only works if you have a conscience - it has always fascinated me how some folk can sleep at night.

Tossing and Turning

I can toss and turn for nights tormented by the thought that I hurt someone by a careless or angry word, even if I felt I was in the right.

What a plonker!

Comment on Everlasting Life from Steve
If we are just one out of 107 billion people that ever lived, we really are insignificant. Many human beings have a problem with having to think of themselves as insignificant, preferring to believe that they have a greater purpose or importance. Our importance is no more than that of an ant in its colony; simply survival of the species. Once you’ve removed the negative connotation from the word, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with being unimportant.

Looking at the big picture, when we’re gone, we’re quickly forgotten, just like the ant or one of your seagulls Arthur
(Youtube - The Reason isn't always obvious); they always seem to be the same each year.
With enough passing of time we all become ‘unknown soldiers’ and our names may get dug up when future generations decide to explore the family tree.

Even when they find great great uncle Albert, all they find is his name, address and occupation; they can never know the human being that made the man who he was.

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