Example research essay topic: Analysis Of Life, Death And The After-life In Religion – 1,755 words

Do not stand at my grave and weep; I am not there,
I do not sleep. I am a thousand winds that blow. I
am the diamond glints on snow. I am the sunlight
on ripened grain. I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the mornings hush I am the
swift uplifting rush Of quiet birds in circled
flight. I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry; I am not there,
I did not die.

–Anonymous In todays society our
perception of death is generally very negative,
not to mention our haunting associations with
death. The human beings that we are, have the
inclination to fear even the slightest thought of
death and or loss. Yes, of course, it is a natural
act to feel this way. In fact, it is usually
expected, and most of the time anticipated that
one would be afraid of what is to come of him in
the next world. As we approach death one of the
tantalizing feelings that we have is that of being
afraid. For those of us that believe in an eternal
life, the above poem creates the perfect image of
how death will be in the after life.

The author of
this poem states, I am not there, I did not die.
He or she is saying that after you die you are not
necessarily dead, but you can make the most of
your after life, it is what you do before you die
that prepares you for the after life. The above
poem allows our insight on death and we are now
able to come to terms with death. Christians and
certain Non-Christians both believe in an after
life, so one must understand that only the after
life can occur after death. It is of common
interest for both people of the Christian faith
and those of other beliefs to be concerned with
the status of the soul after ones death. For this
reason it is important that all people of the
world continually face the ultimate question of
death and the rebirth of the soul, Christians and
Non-Christians alike both believe in hope for the
soul after death. The Epic of Gilgamesh, as we
come to find that life here on Earth is only a
journey through the darkness that will eventually
lead us to the light of eternal life.

When he had
gone one league the darkness became thick around
him, for there was no lightAfter eleven leagues
the dawn light appeared. At the end of twelve
leagues the sun streamed out (The Epic of
Gilgamesh, pg. 99). This passage represents the
journey that a Non-Christian can take in his life.
Here we see how the journey through life can lead
to the resurrection or the light. This passage
clearly adds justification to the fact that the
life on earth has a direct affect on the life
after death for Non-Christians. This directly
states that the soul shall achieve eternal life
through the soul that has lead many individuals to
examine their personal lives to the best of their
ability.

All people can find comfort in death by
understanding the positive characteristics of the
after life. The up coming characters along with
Gilgamesh are perfect examples of people, who are
Non-Christians, who casted away the fear of death
in belief that the soul is immortal. The Trial and
Death of Socrates presents a quick over view of
how individuals different religious status can
come to the terms with the fear of dying: This is
the reason why a man should be of good cheer about
his own should, if during life he has ignored the
pleasures of the body and its ornamentation.but
has seriously concerned himself with the pleasures
of learning, and adorned his soul not with alien
but with its own ornaments, namely moderation,
righteousness, courage, freedom, and truth, and in
that state awaits his journey to the underworld
(Plato pg. 55). It is a strong belief of Socrates
that by living a good life here on earth one can
require life after death. This idea may not be as
compelling as that of the Christian belief, but it
serves a purpose.

Here, without religion, one can
concentrate on his life on earth, which can then
lead to eternal happiness. Still the understanding
of the after life must surface and be examined. I
have been saying for some time and at some length
that after I have drunk the poison I shall no
longer be with you but will leave you and go and
enjoy some good fortunes of the blessed (Plato pg.
56). Socrates is clearly saying that he should not
fear death due to the blessings that are to come
in the afterworld. This notion of the after life
or rebirth of ones life once the mortal body has
perished acts as the buffer for Socrates and many
others who have fulfilled their earthly duties.
The Christian faith gives humans beings the hope
they maybe looking for after the death of the
body. Listen, I will tell you a mystery! We will
not all die, but we will be changed, in a moment,
in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet
(1st Corinthians 15:51).

It is definitely not any
mystery to those of the Christian belief that once
the body has died, the soul will live on. Rudyard
Kipling said, If any question why we lived, Tell
them because our father died
(http://startpage.com/html/quotations.html).
Eternal life has been the foundation for many
Christians who believe in God. Yet, many people of
faith are still afraid of death. For these
individuals the understanding of the after life
must come into play. So it is with the
resurrection of the dead. What is sown is
perishable, what is raised is imperishableIt is
sown a physical body, it is raised a spiritual
body (1st Corinthians 15:42-44).

It is only with
the death of the body can the soul experience life
after death. Henry Ward Beecher said, Living is
death; dying is life. We are not what we appear to
be. On this side of the grave we are exiles, on
that citizens; on this side orphans, on that
children
(http://www.borrowedtyme.com/quotes.html). Here we
see the side of the after life where dying is
life. Beecher is getting at a point where we live
our lives as two different people.

It is the faith
in God and his magnificent ability to raise living
souls and grant human beings everlasting peace
that has continually drawn people to the Christian
religion for two thousand years. Christ gives
everyone that believes in him and has faith the
full ability to escape the fear of death. He says
in Mark 16:16, The one who believes and is
baptized will be saved. This verse is one that
Christians always have in the back of their minds
that help stand strong against the fear that death
presents. Jesus Christ is saying he guarantees
anyone who believes in him will be saved from sin,
but Christ has a place for our everlasting soul.
When the soul is guaranteed to last forever you
can look past death. In the novel, Silence, by
Sushaku Endo, Mokichi, the Japanese peasant, is
being persecuted by the Samurai for his Christian
beliefs.

The authorities allow Mokichi to denounce
his faith, yet he stays strong in his belief that
the next world will bring everlasting life.
Mokichi knew that after death his soul would be
resurrected, which in turn allowed him to
withstand the ultimate fear of death. Mokichi was
able to sing a hymn, Were on our way, were on our
way..to the temple of paradise (Silence, pg. 60).
As he sings this song it has a sense of dark
sadness to it. The life was too painful for these
Japanese peasants. Relying on the temple of
paradise they have been able to go on living and
accepting death. Go into all the world and
proclaim the good news to the whole creation (Mark
16:15).

This is what Jesus Christ wants people to
do, the good news that is proclaimed here is the
exact recipe that is prescribed to allow us the
ability to experience good life after death. This
Good News can eliminate the fear of dying,
allowing the positive notions of death to become
real. This Good News is that the Lord and Savior
Jesus Christ died on the cross for our sins and
that he promises to grant eternal life to all
those that believe and are baptized in the name of
the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The
Bhagavad-Gita, which represents the notion of the
after life from the Hindu perspective: Our bodies
are known to end, but the embodied self is
enduring, indestructible, and immeasurable Death
is certain for anyone born, and birth is certain
for the dead (Bhagavad-Gita Gita, pg. 33). This
birth is the exact action that occurs for those
that die and have lead a good life.

The Hindu
religion goes further in its explanation of
eternal life: Never have I not existed, nor you,
nor these kings; and never in the future shall we
cease to exist (Bhagavad-Gita, pg. 31). This shows
the notion of the Hindu belief of the comfort in
the assurance that life after death will truly
bring happiness. The Hindu based belief that we
will never cease to exist only adds clarity to the
idea that the body is only a physical state in
which an eternal soul emerges. Regardless of what
religion tells us individuals will continue to
fear death. The problem with this is we see and
hear the body leaving the earth and never
returning which are what we as human beings have a
hard time grasping.

Until one becomes aware of the
positive characteristics of death, resurrection,
and rebirth one will continue to fear our mortal
fate of death. Even though Christians have the
opportunity to find hope in their soul after death
due to their faith in God, others differ in their
religion and beliefs, in which they cannot find
the same Christian comfort in their religion. Dag
Hammarskjold said, Do not seek death. Death will
find you. But seek the road which makes death a
fulfillment
(http://www.borrowed-tyme.com/quotes/death.html).
Seek the road in which death is a fulfillment is
something that many Christians and Non-Christians
try to do to have that guaranteed spot for theyre
after life..

Research essay sample on Analysis Of Life Death And The After life In Religion