If you think about it, it is kind of a stupid question. Death means the end, finale, the final caboose, that's all she wrote, etc. It reminds me of the old Mad Magazine bit about snappy answers to stupid questions, like "Is this the end of the line" when 50 people are obviously lined up, facing in one direction.
Is there life after death? Well, no.
There I answered that one. I think what people are really trying to figure out is what happens after you die. Is it like a video game and you have to start over at the first level? Or do you get to start where the game left off? Or do you start a completely new game?
The dumbest option I can think of is that you float around in the spirit world, hanging out where you died or lived a long time and hope that someone takes a photo of you that appears to be an "astral orb" or uses sophisticated recording equipment to try and capture your spiritual wisdom and all you can whisper is, "Soooo..."
I used to want to believe in ghosts because I thought it would ease that cosmic fear I have of death just being the end and then you are nothing. I still don't want to believe that. But I also don't want to believe that death means being put on hold in a limbo world listening to elevator music.
This post was prompted by a program I watched today on the History Channel while working out on the elliptical machine. It was about a group of ghost hunters who put tons of cameras and recording equipment in several rooms of the Lizzie Borden house to see if they could capture the ghost of Lizzie or her murdered father and step mother (remember the nursery rhyme, "Lizzie Borden took an axe, gave her mother 40 whacks...When she saw what she had done, gave her father 41").
After about 50 hours, the best the ghost hunters could come up with was a recording of what sounded like a whispered, "Sooo..." after the ghost hunters were packing up the rest of the equipment. Oh, and they took an infrared photo of a trunk in one room that liked like the bottom of the trunk was hotter than the top part.
Apparently the next world doesn't have cable so spirits spend lots of time trying to figure out how to communicate with this world. They think of clever things to say like, "So," and "yeah" (perhaps all spirits are teenagers). And they heat up the bottom of trunks.
Maybe death just being the end isn't so bad after all.