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Description of the Afterlife in Different Cultures - Essay Example

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Afterlife means the life after death, in other words eternal life. According to James Still, people use euphemisms like God called her/him when somebody dies. He however says that these ideas are meant to make people believe that there is always life after death…
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Description of the Afterlife in Different Cultures
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Download file to see previous pages That is why different cultures attach different meanings and beliefs to this afterlife. (Still3)
The Greeks for instance, believe that once someone dies, they go to another world, whereby you are welcomed by a goddess who is very beautiful. Homer uses a narrative to explain this myth. He shows how Odysseus was carried in a ship together with other companions in a black ship. He also explains that there is another region which they saw, and which was covered by mist and clouds where another goddess sits. According to the Greeks, the dead communicate with each other and can always see each other. They also believe that after the end of the physical life, the spirits of the dead join the dead in the new land even before they are physically buried. That is why Elpenor and Odysseus manage to talk to one another, and that is why Elpenor sends Odysseus with a message that, he should be buried soon. (Homer 89)
They also believe that the living can communicate with the dead through spirits and that one can recognize the dead by appearance. That's why when Odysseus made the sacrifice of a ram, he even saw his mother's spirit who did not speak to him, but god advised him on how to lead his life. The gods act like their seers and can foresee all the shortcomings in life, and warn their families. Greeks have different gods for different things, who also have different names. Through the sacrifices they make, the living are told what they want by talking to their god and asking these gods, questions which are not clear to them. (Homer 150)
The (home) land of afterlife appears to be a very scaring place from Homers description. It appears like a lifeless place. For instance, "huge rivers, fearful waters, oceans which no man can cross on foot." This means that there is a lot of water in this land and people use boats to move across these waters. The living can communicate with the "Living" dead verbally. The dead live together as groups, and they seem to appear in groups of their gender. The women came in large numbers to drink the blood. Odysseus seems to hold a very detailed conversation with people's spirit who had died long time ago. It appears to be a question answer dialogue between him and these spirits and also the gods of the people. (Homer 601).
The deaths of people can always be prophesied just like Odysseus death was prophesied. There is also revenge from the dead to those who had crossed them or killed them. The Greeks afterlife seems to have very many interactions with the living. It's like there is always a channel of interacting and communicating between the living and the dead.
According to the Islamic culture, afterlife is a moment to enjoy more than the physical life. They believe that, in that land, Angels are all over taking guard on the dead; the environment is so good and very peaceful. They believe that once one dies, they go to accompany their God in a precious land. They believe that the physical life on earth is actually a preparation to the afterlife in heaven. According to them, their afterlife is in heaven, and that all generations will meet some day in that land. Once someone dies, they go to heaven and they will be judged one day, the day when all the generations will meet. However they believe that the faithful Muslims will be rewarded for their faith. That is what the Koran (Qur'an) states, and that their God is very generous. They ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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