Today on Radio lab they did a really good hour on death and the afterlife. Here is the link: http://www.radiolab.org/2009/jul/27/
They pulled it off without religion and just enough gentle woo to suck in even an atheist.
As a kid I was terrified of the idea of eternity in heaven. I even went through a short period where I would cry in bed at night at the thought of it. Obviously atheism was inevitable for me!
Now with the help of my limited readings, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Carl Sagan, and you fine folks, I feel a warm comfort in knowing that my atoms or subatomic particles (if my atoms get split somehow?) will be floating around making new stuff here or elsewhere or floating freely in space (if they can escape the atmosphere somehow.) The atoms might miss each other at first, but they will soon be off to new and exciting adventures.
And there is always this math theory which, while I haven't verified it's authenticity, is awesome: " there are about 200 billion Shakespearean atoms in each of us. "
Here is a place I'd like some of my atoms to visit after I go:
That's beautiful, annet. I want some of mine to visit 40 Eridani A. Why? That's the home system of the planet Vulcan and those crazy Vulcans, like Spock, Surak, T'Pau. :)
Live long and prosper Tony.