When I was young, and people told me I was going to heaven when i died, I always thought: “really?” It sounded a little too fanciful to be real, and I got the same feeling when they told me about Hell. It wasn’t until later in life that I learnt that the bible doesn’t actually say there is a Hell.
The bible says in the first testament about life after death, that the dead are conscious of nothing at all. The only heaven that was mentioned was a heaven on earth. I don’t believe much of what is in the bible anyway, my opinions rely mostly on science. What I can say with a fair amount of certainty, is that nothing can come from nothing, and everything cannot suddenly turn into nothing.
Science is showing us (in the first law of thermodynamics), that mass/energy cannot be created or destroyed, it only changes form which means that everything that can possibly happen, such as the life and death of an individual, will happen, an infinite amount of times, if it is possible at all. The reasoning behind this is simple.
The universe, exploded in a big bang, and there could not have been nothing before it, because no reaction is possible without space/time. The thing that caused the big bang must be still around, in order to cause another big bang, because, if it isn’t, it couldn’t have happened in the first place. I favor the many worlds theory, (the big crunch).
There was no beginning of time, it just keeps going, perhaps in a form where time cannot be measured by us, but nevertheless, time and space are eternal. So the question becomes, are you yourself, or are you the universe incarnated into yourself? Is individuality an illusion? Or if you prefer, will you be reincarnated as yourself or a fly?
The Buddhists believe that all is one and turns in endless circles, one creature made out of the old one, just as in nature and the food chain. Big fish eats little fish, and little fish becomes big fish. Of course, this is not the only view. The other possibility (out of countless ideas), is that the formula that makes you you, or your DNA, means that you could only ever be yourself, continuously, in identical, or almost identical universes.
When you die, you will not notice any time gone by, so for eternity, you will die as an old man and wake up as a little baby, perhaps in the exact same universe as the last. It is impossible to tell which of these ideas is correct, but I tend to like the Buddhist idea better.
Bare in mind, I am not at all religious, and don’t believe in anything supernatural. We are all made out of the same stuff, but nobody knows what happens after death. Please check out my articles about the origins of the universe.