What would you ask the Dead?
What’s the temperature there? I know that sounds like a dumb question, but consider the implications for science if it were established that there really was an afterlife. Physics alone would progress by leaps and bounds if given just a little information about the physical properties of another dimension.
Are there atoms or is there magnetism in heaven? Is there any matter at all? Is there gravity in heaven, do balls fall down? How many dimensions are there in heaven? Left/right, forward/backward, up/down; what else is there?
What is the ground like? Is it like soft clouds or green meadows? Is the weather always the same? Does it sometimes rain? Are there regions with different climates in heaven? Is it all Caribbean beaches or is there a sub-Saharan and a polar heaven? Are there hurricanes or blizzards? Can you travel in heaven? How far can you go? Is heaven infinite or does it have borders? If you have gone to the infinite, what is infinity like? How did you get there and how long does it take? Did you fly to infinity or is there some kind of public transportation?
Are there plants there? Are there animals there? Are all animals represented? Are there dinosaurs in heaven? Do animals breed in the afterlife? Do animals in heaven eat other animals? If they do, then what happens to the prey when they are killed? Do they go to some other heaven? If animals don’t eat other animals are they deprived basic instinctual pleasure of the hunt? On the subject of basic instinctual pleasures, are people allowed to drink in heaven?
Do the inhabitance of the hereafter all hale from different time periods? Do they all speak the same language? Can you have a conversation with someone who died during the Renaissance, like Michelangelo? If you’re speaking to Michelangelo, do you have to restrict your subject to only things an inhabitant of the Renaissance might understand or can you talk to him about the newest iphone apps? Are dead famous people in heaven always being hounded by dead fans?
Are there animals in heaven; are there Neanderthals, or Australopithecus? Are there aliens from other planets in Heaven? What are those beings like? How many different species are there? If as a ghost you can occasionally visit Earth, can you also visit the other planets that the aliens came from?
Do you wear clothes in heaven? Do you change your clothes every day? Do you eat? Are you awake all the time or do you regularly need to sleep in heaven? If you sleep, do you dream in heaven? What are the dreams of a dead person?
Can you feel your own body? Are you transparant? Do you still have the sense of touch, taste, smell? Can you see without eyes? What is it like NOT having to breathe? Do you miss taking air into your lungs or feeling your heart beating in your chest? Do you have desires and cravings? Do you have sex? Do you ever get tired of eternity? How do you keep yourself from going insane?
Do you have money in heaven? Do you have jobs? Do you have responsibilities? What are the consequences when you don’t meet those responsibilities? How could you possibly have motivation in heaven? If everything is provided for you in heaven, do you still have goals? Do you still have a sense of purpose? Is there depression?
Can you go to school in heaven to better yourself? Can you study science and medicine? Are there research facilities in heaven? Can you make scientific discovers? Can you discover a cure for cancer? Would you then be forbidden to share that cure with the Earthly world? Can you study more than one discipline? Can you become an expert in law, and medicine and computer programming and engineering all at the same time? Since you have all the time in the world, can you collect an unlimited amount of knowledge? Can you become omnipotent, or is that frowned upon by you know who?
I suspect the reason clairvoyants avoid questions like these is probably because they might start contradicting each other. Madam Mindy in Ohio says the afterlife consists of lying in a hammock on a tropical beach. But Omar the Oracle in Thailand describes a shimmering ether, while Sammy the Seer reveals that the afterlife is not much different from being here on earth with work and responsibility and disappointment, but you get to smoke all the pot you want. If we were to start getting wildly different answers from the same questions, then the general public might start getting the idea that at least some of these wise men and woman might not truly see as far as they say they do.
If I really had the chance to interrogate some dearly departed, I might end with the following line of questioning. Oh Great Spirit from beyond the netherworld, I don’t know if you’ve been looking down at us lately but this world is filled with some crazy people. Let’s face it. No one human is perfect. Here on Earth, everyone one of us clutches onto some nutty idea or concept that is flat out wrong. Oh, restless apparition, I ask you now, is this also the case in the afterlife? In heaven are you granted the privilege of being given the answers to all things? Or can some souls continue to hold beliefs that are incorrect? Do some specters in the dark beyond still have irrational fears? Are there phantasms with phobias? Are some poltergeist prejudice? Is there racism in heaven? Or is there some perfect party line? Is everyone in the afterlife forced to think exactly the same way. If all is perfect and good do spirits in heaven still have free will? I didn’t quite get that. What did you just say? Excuse me, Mr. Ghost, I believe your fading out..hello...hello...