Advertisement
If you have a new account but are having problems posting or verifying your account, please email us on [email protected] for help. Thanks :)
Hello All, This is just a friendly reminder to read the Forum Charter where you wish to post before posting in it. :)

Afterlife and living on.

  • 06-06-2021 9:32am
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 1,347 ✭✭✭ Eire Go Brach


    I Will be honest. I did not know how to title this.
    I also have kids. But I’m very much cool with people that don’t want to have kids. Choice is choice. So hear me out on this one.
    I’m an atheist and quite anti religion and I believe that when we die we are no different than the fly on the windowsill. Just molecules and atoms absorbed back by the universe. All we are is the most intelligent animal on this planet. Why should we be different in terms of after life. etc.

    What I do believe is that we live on through our kids. Our genes gong forward their memories of us etc. Procreation is the basic function of all living things on the planet. Except us of course. I will admit it’s a different opinion. Just wondering your thoughts on this?


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 11,719 ✭✭✭✭ Dial Hard


    It seems like a singularly poor argument for having children to me. What difference would it make to you how you "live on" through them? You'll be dead, you won't know.


  • Registered Users Posts: 17,502 ✭✭✭✭ eviltwin


    I Will be honest. I did not know how to title this.
    I also have kids. But I’m very much cool with people that don’t want to have kids. Choice is choice. So hear me out on this one.
    I’m an atheist and quite anti religion and I believe that when we die we are no different than the fly on the windowsill. Just molecules and atoms absorbed back by the universe. All we are is the most intelligent animal on this planet. Why should we be different in terms of after life. etc.

    What I do believe is that we live on through our kids. Our genes gong forward their memories of us etc. Procreation is the basic function of all living things on the planet. Except us of course. I will admit it’s a different opinion. Just wondering your thoughts on this?

    No, when I'm dead I'm dead. It won't matter if I have one kid or two or ten.

    One thing I do like about procreating is how people keep your memory alive. I am in complete awe of my paternal grandmother who died when I was 14. Its only now as an adult that I realise how incredible a woman she was and how she was ahead of her time and I've written a few pieces on her for various things, its nice to be able to share that. If I wasn't here no one would know who she is.

    There's a part of me that would love future generations of my family to talk about how great I am :P and I have things I'd like to pass down the line, stuff I don't want going to landfill or the charity shop.

    Another thing, and this may be silly, but I'd like to think that when I go someone will still come tend my resting place. I always think its sad when fairly recent graves are left uncared for. I visit my dad's and granny's grave from time to time, keep it nice and tidy and reminds me how much they were loved which is nice.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,347 ✭✭✭ Eire Go Brach


    Dial Hard wrote: »
    It seems like a singularly poor argument for having children to me. What difference would it make to you how you "live on" through them? You'll be dead, you won't know.
    well I agree this to an extent. I have said to family. That when I die do with my body what every you want. What ever makes you happy. Once it’s not a church 😀 when your dead your dead.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,643 ✭✭✭ R.D. aka MR.D


    You are dead, you won't know (in my opinion) whether people are remembering you or not.

    If you are concerned about legacy, start a foundation or something. Sponsor a scholarship. Creating a human being just so they can maybe remember you some day is odd.

    The comedian George Carlin has a great bit about people 'looking down' from above. I don't disparage religious people but if you really think dead is dead, what does it matter.


  • Posts: 18,752 ✭✭✭✭ [Deleted User]


    Not sure I quite get it OP, do you feel that some of yourself lives on through their.DNA or is it just your legacy living on?

    Either way, can't say it bothers me either way, when I'm dead I'm dead, doesn't matter what happens when I'm gone, if no-one ever even mentions my name.again, what harm.


  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 614 ✭✭✭ notsoyoungwan


    It really doesn’t bother me whether I ‘live on’ through others or not. Why would it? I believe that once I’m dead, that’s it, no awareness, just like before I was alive. I wont be aware of anyone remembering or forgetting me. The likelihood is people will only be remembered for two generations anyway, maybe 3 in some cases. In 100 years time we’ll all be forgotten, unless you made significant contributions to society and are remembered for that.

    I don’t care about ‘leaving something behind’ or any of that. The earth was here long before me and will (hopefully) be here long after me, I’m only passing through.


  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    I'm a parent but I never once thought about 'living on' through the continued existence of my son after my death. He may not have kids himself, so it could possibly be a temporary extension anyway.

    When I'm gone, I'm gone forever. If someone remembers me for a while, that's nice. Sooner or later though, someone will say my name for the last time and I will go the way of the vast majority of the billions before me and I won't even be a memory any more. I'm fine with that, it's the nature of life and death.

    It sure as hell isn't much of a reason to have kids.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,347 ✭✭✭ Eire Go Brach


    I suppose it’s a genetic thing thing as well. Not so much about being remembered. Maybe a bit selfish to. But it’s something I thought about from my early 20s. Mid 40s now.


  • Registered Users Posts: 36 Scouseouse


    I suppose it’s a genetic thing thing as well. Not so much about being remembered. Maybe a bit selfish to. But it’s something I thought about from my early 20s. Mid 40s now.
    A lady I know was very determined to have at least one baby so that her parents (who were not religious) could have a grandchild, That in itself is not so unusual - parent pressure on children to produce grand kids etc. When grand child arrived grandad was delighted and walked up and down the street with baby telling anyone he met how pleased he had achieved this( the granddaughter), which he described as his immortality. I used to think this was a bit of an extreme story but actually these people were very frank about their motivations and these ideas might be quite common. It got worse though...
    Even to the point were said lady told her now teenaged immortality baby why/how she chose her father so she could get pregnant. This obsession with reproduction was relentless in this case - didn't put much value on the individual child as an individual rather a means to an end - live through your children , they are to be controlled, when will you give me a grandson?... you are a such a disappointment to me... etc etc. The daughter distanced herself when she reached adulthood, not really surprising.


  • Registered Users Posts: 10,538 ✭✭✭✭ Igotadose


    It's funny how little concern is shown to the offspring manufactured to preserve someone's "legacy." What if that child is born disabled? Into poverty? Into a massively more crowded, hotter, violent world.

    And, other than, I don't know, some prominent politician, is "legacy" anything but nonsense? Legacy, shmegacy. Maybe you have a career and a family. Maybe not. Maybe you come up with some prominent scientific breakthrough. Highly unlikely.

    Someone wanting a 'legacy' is really looking for justification for their want. They want an offspring. That's all. Chances the offspring remembers you in a positive way? Estrangement is common in human history, maybe you can hope for the offspring having some positive memory of you. Or maybe they'll simply try to forget about you.

    No concern in advance for the offspring, no concern for the world the offspring will grow up into. Might as well get a puppy, a rescue puppy is measurably doing something good, unlike producing another human for 'a legacy.'


  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 12,026 ✭✭✭✭ DaCor


    To answer Op, yes reproduction is the method by which our genes carry on.

    However as a childfree person I do not care about this. If my genes die with me, meh, could care less.

    Now the family name, thats a sore point in my family. My father was one of 4 brothers, the only one who married and only one son, me, so the family name effectively dies with me.

    He asked me once if I would consider having a child to carry on the family name, told him that wouldn't even figure in any list of reasons to have a child.

    That the family name & genes will end with me does not cause me any loss of sleep, its simply not something I care about


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,788 ✭✭✭ ztoical


    Create art, plant a tree, pay for a park bench, use your will to set up a fund for sports/art/local event...there are loads of ways to make something that lives on after you other then creating children.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,812 ✭✭✭ Addle


    I think it’s a bit obnoxious to actively want your genes to be carried on to be honest.
    What’s so great about you?
    I know a family like this. A righteous group, who genuinely believe the world is better with them in it.
    They’re a bunch a hypocrites.


  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 6,394 Mod ✭✭✭✭ pinkypinky


    I'm a genealogist, and am all too aware that the people in the tree who don't marry and reproduce are often not explored. I love adding in new family members to my tree - a great joy when my niece was born. I'm a tiny bit sad that I won't add any self-produced children to my tree, but it's not enough of a reason to have them.

    Because I also work with DNA - I see that within a few generations, you don't even have much shared DNA with your ancestors anyway...

    Genealogy Forum Mod



  • Registered Users Posts: 10,538 ✭✭✭✭ Igotadose


    DaCor wrote: »
    To answer Op, yes reproduction is the method by which our genes carry on.

    However as a childfree person I do not care about this. If my genes die with me, meh, could care less.

    Now the family name, thats a sore point in my family. My father was one of 4 brothers, the only one who married and only one son, me, so the family name effectively dies with me.

    He asked me once if I would consider having a child to carry on the family name, told him that wouldn't even figure in any list of reasons to have a child.

    That the family name & genes will end with me does not cause me any loss of sleep, its simply not something I care about

    Of course, an adopted child can carry on the family name. Problem solved and a good deed done (talk about a positive legacy, adopting a child's a pretty good one. Even an unmarried brother can adopt a child.)


  • Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 6,781 Mod ✭✭✭✭ shesty


    I don't go in for this kind of thinking myself at all but......we have 2 girls and then a boy. My husbands family (Mother and Father in law, and sundry relations particularly on my FIL's side) were disproportionately thrilled at the arrival of our son......because he will be the only one in the extended family to carry on their family name (they assumed).They went so far as to be really insistent that they meet him shortly after he was born, and that was basically their first comment. It annoyed the sh*t out of me.Not least because it is the absolute last thing that would ever occur to me.


  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 30,481 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Faith


    I'd be curious about why you believe we live on through our children, specifically, rather than other family members? Or indeed our friends and the people we have close relationships with? I think wanting to "live on" or, more likely, a fear of being forgotten, is a poor reason to have kids. I'm happy that I'll be remembered for a while by the people close to me, and their kids, without needing to make my own. I don't feel I have any special DNA that desperately needs to be passed on either.


  • Registered Users Posts: 614 ✭✭✭ notsoyoungwan


    Addle wrote: »
    I think it’s a bit obnoxious to actively want your genes to be carried on to be honest.
    What’s so great about you?
    I know a family like this. A righteous group, who genuinely believe the world is better with them in it.
    They’re a bunch a hypocrites.

    Absolutely. There’s something quite narcissistic about it, IMO.


  • Registered Users Posts: 450 ✭✭ MintyMagnum


    Really how many people are remembered by their family's next generations anyway. Once you go past grandparent / great grandparent, people who've never met you, unless you've some great claim to fame won't be talking about you or tending your grave etc IMO


  • Registered Users Posts: 12,026 ✭✭✭✭ DaCor


    Igotadose wrote: »
    Of course, an adopted child can carry on the family name. Problem solved and a good deed done (talk about a positive legacy, adopting a child's a pretty good one. Even an unmarried brother can adopt a child.)

    The hint is in the forum name


  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 10,538 ✭✭✭✭ Igotadose


    DaCor wrote: »
    The hint is in the forum name

    Of course. Was responding to the poster commenting about the family name issue as a reason to have a child, and the OP mentioning 'legacy.' You don't need to have a child to have a legacy.


  • Registered Users Posts: 12,026 ✭✭✭✭ DaCor


    Igotadose wrote: »
    Of course. Was responding to the poster commenting about the family name issue as a reason to have a child, and the OP mentioning 'legacy.' You don't need to have a child to have a legacy.

    That's not what you wrote


Advertisement