Now I'm considering whether or not I believe in reincarnation —depending on how you lead your current life, your soul or spirit gets a promotion or demotion in the next. "Karma" — what goes around comes around.
It's easier for me to believe that when I die, the lights simply go out. A comforting long nap. But I'm trying to expand my mind about these things.
The Heaven and Hell of monotheism, I find, are difficult concepts. Hell, who needs it. (I think my unrepentant diverce and remarriage already qualifies me.) Heaven — it always sounds about as interesting as the long nap. No challenges, no projects, no competition? I can only tolerate so much partying.
And what's up with Purgatory — Hell + Hope? Is it like going to prison, where you know when your parole hearing is coming up? Or is it more like Guantanamo, only hotter?
Early Christians apparently believed in the transmigration of souls, which is roughly similar to reincarnation. I wonder why they stopped. Maybe when they decided that only humans had souls. Because then how do you account for population explosions? Transmigration of souls adds up if you can assume that Dick Cheney could be reincarnated as pill bug.
I do believe in purpose. And in service toward the common good. When I die, if I get a ticket to Heaven, do I want to be sitting around listening to the angels sing? Or worse, listening to the whiners on Earth asking me to put in a good word with the Big Guy? I'd just as soon be recycled back into the fray. Maybe, assuming my karma score is good, in my next life I could be a popular teenager who wears a Size 2 (okay, Size 8) and goes on to win a Pulitzer Prize. See, that gives me a little more incentive to be a better person now... a few more points on the old scorecard and in the next life I might be able to throw a softball...
Oh, and if my sins land my transmigrated soul into a fertilized egg in a clinic freezer? PLEASE, put me to work. Take my stem cells, award me the karma points for martyrdom, and release me to the next life up. Then maybe I could go on to have a great singing voice...