The Times Before.

“You can’t take a picture of this, it’s already gone.”

I recently finished watching Six Feet Under for the first time. I must say, this was the perfect time in my life to watch this show. It’s given me a lot to consider.

It’s no secret that the concept of time is a frequent debate for me. I recognize how imagined it is, yet, it does exist to some extent. I am getting older, even if years are not technically real. Wear and tear from metabolism and movement is the cause of aging, and eventually being too worn to sustain life anymore. I know that the clock does not exist for other species on this planet, and while 2 o’clock isn’t really real, the wear and tear is. Each setting and rising of the moon and sun, I know that I am getting further from birth, and closer to death. I am chronically aware of my impermanence, and the impermanence of the organisms around me.

And things do go faster and faster it seems. Sometimes I feel that I am watching my life from memories. Is there ever really the present moment? It’s over too fast. As I get older, I will have more and more to relive until the final moment, when I can look back on all of it at once. And then that’s it.

I understand the allure of religion and spirituality. Without them, life can appear terribly bleak and pointless. I recognize the true importance and comfort they can provide. I personally try to allow my own spirituality to fill the uncertainties I have. I do believe I am a soul, and I think I believe that souls continue for eternity. I must admit that eternity often scares me, but perhaps I just do not fully grasp what that means, or what it will be like. I’m using what I know from this life to assess what the afterlife will be, and I’m sure that’s unfair and too biased. I don’t know, and I won’t (until I do, of course).

An afterlife seems fantastical sometimes, though. Humans think they are the main characters of earth, and we are so special as to warrant the creation of everything. If I have a soul, then I believe that all creatures on this planet also have a soul. If we get an afterlife, then all the other animals do as well. Otherwise, it just wouldn’t make a whole lot of sense to me.

These ideas and thoughts have been defining much of my life for a number of years now. And I’ve only progressively gotten more and more curious. Consuming media that touches on these topics is helpful, though, as it reminds me that I am not the only soul who wonders. And I do not have to do this alone. No matter how scary, it transcends my specific existence. The people who came before me also wondered what came next. And now they know, that is if consciousness does continue. I think it does. I am part of a large collective whole. There are some reassurances in that.

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