By Brad Bowins MD
We do seem to be very religious and spiritual by nature, but why? The answer in short is that religion offers hope for a positive scenario beyond this life. In one form or another something more optimistic than “the end” that science posits, is provided by these beliefs. You might wonder why we care. Human intelligence is a wonderful thing, enabling us to solve many problems, but it comes with a price, that being awareness of our own mortality, and that of loved ones. Although we do not know for sure, it is unlikely that our pets are weighed down by such concerns. The weight we feel from this, heightened at critical times during our life, cries out for a solution.
As a psychiatrist and researcher, specializing in theoretical research, I have investigated a diverse range of topics, the results presented in peer-reviewed papers (psychiatrytheory.com) and books (bradbowinsbooks.com). I thoroughly research each topic from different perspectives, with the goal of achieving the truth. One of my early discoveries being that we naturally distort things to the positive side as a key defensive strategy, at least those of us who have good mental health. Consistent with this defense, we generate reassuring scenarios for what happens after our time on this world is over, the answers being core to religious and spiritual beliefs. This is not to say that religions lack benefits beyond psychological defense; indeed, throughout time they have offered a mostly constructive way forward and social solidarity. However, what distinguishes the various forms of religion and spirituality is answers to the questions that really matter to us at a deep level.
Then science enters with concepts that counter religious beliefs, such as how there is no evidence for an afterlife. So, on the one hand we have religion and spirituality offering hopeful solutions to our concerns about what comes after death, and on the other hand, science knocking these promises down. Defenders of religious beliefs often reject science, wall religion off as separate, or misinterpret science. Followers of science frequently see religious beliefs as uninformed. There never really seems to be any way of merging or aligning them, or is there?
The search for an answer to what happens after our time here is over, that is consistent with science, became my goal. To achieve this goal, I set about exploring what major religions, present and past, might contribute. Based on this exploration, I can confidently say that we are indeed very spiritual, with almost every conceivable solution proposed, from heaven, passage into underworlds of multiple forms, continuation as spirits, and even the “deceased” person still present with the modern day Torajan people of Sulawesi, Indonesia. My search also looked at relevant science, and as it turns out, some of the concepts are very informative regarding the ultimate solution.
In going through all the information, I was struck by how religion and science readings share one thing in common, at least in terms of details; they often present quite dry and tedious. From this awareness, I decided to present this non-fiction information in a light and entertaining fiction and travelogue format. Following a life-changing experience, a young physician realizes that he needs to seek the answer to what happens after our time here is over. The Horror leads to The Curiosity, his journey of discovery taking him around the world exploring several of the major religions—Ancient Egyptian, Islam, Judaism, Christianity, ancient Greek, ancient Roman, Maya, Inca, Anishinaabe and Objibwe, Hinduism, Buddhism. Along the way, he encounters many interesting characters, and enters into a romance with his soul mate. He also experiences further trials and tribulations, that strengthen his resolve to succeed. With much information but no clear answers, he ventures forward to The Discovery. Intrigued by the notion of permanence and impermanence, he learns how this plays into the ultimate answer during visits to the perspective changing Torajans and the “heavenly paradise” of Hawaii. Combining this understanding with scientific knowledge, he achieves an answer showing how we are all immortal in a very real sense. You will be surprised at how simple the answer ultimately is.
Beyond providing an informed answer to the ultimate question of what happens after our time here is over, a “treasure” more valuable than the sum of all others discovered to date, is revealed! This treasure has amazing implications for how the universe is likely structured, and for accessing vast amounts of information.
For a refreshing and optimistic answer to the ultimate question, take a journey of discovery to THE INFORMATIVE GOD.