“X: But the scientific materialists assert that after the death of man nothing remains; that the human body simply disintegrates into its component elements, and that what we call soul is merely a temporary self-consciousness produced as a byproduct of organic action, which will evaporate like steam. Is not theirs a strange state of mind?
M: Not strange at all, that I see, If they say that self-consciousness ceases with the body, then in their case they simply utter an unconscious prophecy. For once that they are firmly convinced of what they assert, no conscious afterlife is possible for them.
X: But if human self-consciousness survives death as a rule, why should there be exceptions?
M: In the fundamental laws of the spiritual world which are immutable, no exception is possible. But there are rules for those who see, and rules for those who prefer to remain blind. … Having persistently denied an afterlife during this life he will be unable to sense it.” ~H. P. Blavatsky
The Afterlife and the Soul
There are people who say that they don’t believe in an afterlife, but if there is one, they will be happy to enjoy it when it happens. As Blavatsky says, that is simply not going to happen. There are others who insist there absolutely is not an afterlife (how they know this, they never explain) and they are correct: for them, it doe’s not exist.
Let’s start with the idea that the soul, consciousness, the mind, and the conscious are all the same thing, or just different aspects of the same thing. That is simply not the case. There have been cases where people who have suffered severe brain injury, or have been born with almost no brain at all, continue to function and be conscious. This is fairly strong evidence that the brain-mind and consciousness is not the same thing. Consciousness is connected to the brain, but that doesn’t mean they are the same thing. I remember once hearing someone who was amazed at the fantastic things a small computer terminal in a store could do. He didn’t realize that the terminal was simply sending a message to a big computer elsewhere, and getting back the answer from that much bigger and more powerful computer. The relationship of the brain and consciousness is much like that of the basic terminal connected to a much more powerful computer that is unseen.
The soul is not the brain-mind or the consciousness. Some people think it is simply because they have never awakened the soul. A person who is born blind, but is never told about eyesight, will not be aware that he is missing something. Likewise, the person who has not awakened his soul—and sadly that is the majority—will hear people talking about a soul and assume he has one and therefore will think it is just his mind or his consciousness. It isn’t. The soul is something purely spiritual and it is dormant when we come into this world. Sometimes it is awakened by a traumatic experience, but it can also be intentionally awakened intentionally.
The Soul of the Materialist
So what happens than to the immortal, spiritual soul of the materialist who dies believing there is no afterlife? When she dies, the soul will separate from her. The soul, having been unused, will be recycled in a sense. It will return to the spiritual realms, but without that person attached to it. It doesn’t even know she existed since she never bothered to awaken it. This “unused” soul can than return in another human body, which is where the somewhat confused concept of reincarnation comes from. The rest of that person: body, mind and energy centers (chakras), will be left on the material plane, fulfilling their own self-prophecy about the afterlife.