Is it possible for an atheist to believe in an after-life?

I know this is a dumb question but its bugging me. As an atheist from the age of 9 I was always a little envious of religious people as they had the hope (no matter how illogical) of an after-life. All I had to look forward to as an atheist was being worm food. Last week-end after quite a few rum and cokes I came up with an idea how an atheist could legitimately have the hope of an afterlife. It is based on the theory of the Big Bang. This theory explains how the universe was created but cannot explain how the original expansion of the universe occurred from nothing. I had the idea that it did not  occur from nothing but in fact occurred from the expansion of a previously contracted universe. The theory is that the universe expands out from its state of maximum contraction until it reaches its maximum expansion and then contracts back. This process is infinite as energy cannot be created or destroyed but merely changed from one form to another. If this process is indeed infinite then at some point I will exist again (and again) in another universe under slightly differing circumstances each time.

I created a webpage which explains the idea better and would appreciate it if people could take a look and criticize the logic. The page is http://bangism.wordpress.com/

Please just take a minute to look and let me know if it makes sense or if I have totally lost the plot.

Thanks

Alan

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I do not believe there will be any connection between my life in this universe and another existence in another universe. I do believe the cyclic Universe argument is the strongest argument yet for another existence.

If there is no connection between your life now and another life later, how is it that you can characterize that other life as being you?!?  Another life, utterly separated and in no way connected to this one is just that, and any invented connection is just that as well.

If that is the case, then you could also believe that all of life is just iterations of you....that overlap...you just don't realize it. Every person in the world is you just a different incarnation.

WHERE is your brain's hard drive?  THERE ISN'T ONE

So what we need is a backup system for a human being.
You're in the WTC on 9/11, you fall to your death.

No problem, just reboot at your most recent restore point. 

Bothered by something in your past?  Just reboot at a restore point before it happened. 

It would solve a lot of problems. 

And create new ones, but that's what life is for.

"Reboot, reboot!"
I always liked the idea that when we die, we "turn off" so to speak. Kind of like Data from Star Trek TNG; nothing, zip, zilch, nada. In so many ways I find this so much more comforting than any kind of afterlife. Especially an afterlife with so many of the xtians I have known. Now that would be hell!!

As scientists are currently unable to explain the point at which nothing could become something this is where the religion and beliefs of Bangism come in. This is more than vaguely reminiscent of the theistic "God of the Gaps" argument. Just because science can't explain something - yet - does not mean the default answer is magical thinking.

In this life you may never win the lottery but at some time in this infinite process you will! So, just the same as religious belief, our consciousness lives on forever, and we have an afterlife. Not in a heaven, but more akin to the eastern belief of reincarnation. Which raises the same question as I have for any other theists. Why do you think the universe owes you something after you die, e.g. eternal existence?

Not to sound overly blunt, but I'd lay off the rum and cokes if I were you.

And as to nothing becoming something, there's a problem with that: it would seem as though "nothing" ain't so nothing as we think it is.  Lawrence Krauss sure doesn't think so, and he has the means to back up his assertion.  Regardez:

That was really good.

Thanks Loren that guy is brilliant. There is a part I dont understand though. He clearly states that the total energy in the universe is zero. The problem I have is Einssteins theory of relativity states that energy is equal to mass multiplied by the speed of light squared. This means that if the universe has zero energy it also has zero mass. I cant figure out how this can be. I can see how he gets energy to be zero by using negative energy in the form of negative gravity but how does he balance out the other side of the equation? 

I suppose the negative energy has negative mass.

That is the only explanation I can see but negative mass is only hypothetical and goes against some laws of physics.

No conscious does not go on. You would have no awareness. 

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