February 22, 2010

"As humans we spend our time seeking big, meaningful
experiences.  So the afterlife may
surprise you when your body wears out. 
We expand back into what we really are – which is, by Earth standards,
enormous.  We stand ten thousand
kilometers tall in each of nine dimensions and live with others like us in a
celestial commune.  When we reawaken in
these, our true bodies, we immediately begin to notice that our gargantuan
colleagues suffer a deep sense of angst.

Our job is the maintenance and upholding of the cosmos.  Universal collapse is imminent, and we
engineer wormholes to act as structural support.  We labor relentlessly on the edge of cosmic
disaster.  If we don’t execute our jobs
flawlessly, the universe will re-collapse. 
Ours is complex, intricate, and important work.

After three centuries of this toil, we have the option to
take a vacation.  We all choose the same
destination: we project ourselves into lower-dimensional creatures.  We project ourselves into the tiny, delicate,
three-dimensional bodies that we call humans, and we are born into the resort
we call Earth.  The idea, on such
vacations, is to capture small experiences. 
On the Earth, we care only about our immediate surroundings.  We watch comedy movies.  We drink alcohol and enjoy music.  We form relationships, fight, break up, and
start again.  When we’re in a human body,
we don’t care about universal collapse – instead, we care only about a meeting
of the eyes, a glimpse of bare flesh, the caressing tones of a loved voice,
joy, love, light, the orientation of a house plant, the shade of a paint
stroke, the arrangement of hair.

Those are good vacations that we take on Earth, replete with
our little dramas and fusses.  The mental
relaxation is unspeakably precious to us. 
And when we’re forced to leave by the wearing out of those delicate
little bodies, it is not uncommon to see us lying prostrate in the breeze of
the solar winds, tools in hand, looking out into the cosmos, wet-eyed,
searching for meaninglessness."

 - David Eagleman


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