Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Eternal Life?

Bizarro is brought to you today by Reclaimed Souls.

To my surprise, there were quite a few readers who didn't understand this cartoon. I didn't get into a lengthy discussion with them so I don't know if it was because they are so unfamiliar with recycling that they don't recognize the triangle symbol, or if their minds were so anthropocentric that they could not make the leap between reincarnation/eternal life and recycling.

This cartoon idea came from my dandy buddy, Richard Cabeza, who has contributed some dandy ideas to Bizarro before. As I've mentioned on this blog in the past, my work is also offered in a strip format and since they usually don't entail much extra art – just a reconfiguration of the panel version – I don't bother posting them. This one, however, adds some punch to the church atmosphere, so I'm sharing it with you. Click it for a better view.

Of course, I particularly like the "Mountain Pie" soda bottle.

I've never quite thought of it this way, but our species' persistence in religious beliefs can be thought of as a desire to be recycled. Most people cannot bring themselves to believe that they will end when their body gives out. The way our brains work, it is difficult not to feel there is a difference between "us" and our bodies. I do not believe in any such difference and think that those feelings are a brain function, like everything else we think and experience. And that when I die, I die; that's it, no more me, no afterlife, no purpose. In contrast to the panic that most people seem to feel about an exclusively biological life with no divine purpose or destination, I find it comforting. I no longer fear dying except for whatever pain or fear might occur during the process; I won't exist to care. Much the way I cannot care what happens in another apartment across town when I'm asleep.

Sounds kind of nice, in a way. Not that I'm in any hurry.



Unknown said...

I read this the other day, and Thought of you, then I came to read the blog and just knew you of all people would appreciate this!

Christopher Hitchens

ojeano said...

What if in the other apartment, while you were asleep, someone was putting non-recyclable plastics into the recycle bin and bundling them up in mylar bags?! Then would you care?

SL said...

HA! Awesome :)


June said...

Death is the excellent cure for old age infirmity. The only cure and I'm very happy there is one. Like you, I'm counting on nothing after that. What if afterlife is lived like the last few years or months of the deteriorated condition? Brr.

Mamallamadingdong said...

Kind of makes you think that what you do in this life is what's important, because that's it. That is all you get.

Matt S said...

Saw this already.


Anonymous said...

if you go along with standard theory of Physics, then all matter, and therefore energy, in universe originated from big bang. Since energy can neither be destroyed nor created, it follows that all the matter and energy that makes up our body and soul originated from big bang. Then it follows that after you die your body will disintegrate into matter and energy and be reconstituted into something else. Therefore then it appears the belief in being reborn is not too far fetched after all.

Plan 9 Studios said...

Given the number of references you made to Jan-in-the-pan today, I feel obligated to respond.

Other than that, I don't know what to talk about.

ojeano said...

You might like this one.

Guzzo said...

To my surprise, there were quite a few readers who didn't understand this cartoon.

Were you really surprised?

There's always a small portion of the population who can't find their Johnson with both hands. Heck, a recent poll shows that 20% of Americans think that our President is Muslim.

But, I got your joke.. it was a good one.

LaLaOrange said...

I love this cartoon so much. Thanks.