What if after I die my life starts all over again? With the same body and the same consciousness! Do you have counterarguments? 😓

  • 8
    Then you would ask the same questions over and over.
    – D. Halsey
    Feb 9 at 23:34
  • Somewhere between 18 hours ago and 2 days ago something pretty nasty appears to have happened to you. However, your recovery seems well underway! Hope you're not too bored! Feb 10 at 15:58
  • 3
    Hi Bee Berry, are you okay? Judging by this and the other similar questions which you have recently posted, I can see that you are really struggling with the idea of solipsism (that of you being the only person in existence) and it has me worried. If it means anything, I can say with absolute certainty that that is not the case. But I really think that you should talk to someone about this. We're here for you. :) Feb 11 at 7:35
  • 1
    The counterargument for afterlife largely consists of a lack of empirical evidence for consciousness persisting after death. To date, no scientific validation of such claims has occurred. Anyone can construct sentences about the universe. Proving them is an entirely different matter.
    – J D
    Feb 11 at 18:48
  • 3
    I'm so sorry that you're struggling. If you'd like we can talk in chat. I have to go right now, but maybe in about two hours? Feb 11 at 21:42

4 Answers 4


The problem with such a scenario is this: It is entirely unclear what it means to say that someone "lives their life over again".


Wouldn't that be great? And it's gonna happen. Gods created the perfect universe for it. There is an infinity of big bangs following each other up in serially.

Every new universe has its own beginning in time. The clone argument doesn't hold for separate universes. Every time fresh matter particle are sprayed into existence, on two sides of a 4D wormhole, sticking to 3D only. And every time a new you comes into being. But in different circumstances.

  • 2
    ...Yeah, don't listen to this person, Bee. Feb 13 at 23:08
  • @MarkMorales He asked for it...
    – Pathfinder
    Feb 13 at 23:19
  • Take a look at some of Bee's other posts. I don't think that they're trolling us. It looks like they're going through some sort of existential crisis. So let's be careful with what we say to them. Feb 13 at 23:28
  • @MarkMoralesII yes, I get you. That'swhy I said it can be always a different life.
    – Pathfinder
    Feb 13 at 23:31
  • But that's still trolling them. Feb 14 at 0:06

That would be great, imagine mining Bitcoin in 2009.

  • I think they're imagining something more like "Groundhog Life", the sequel, mmmdcxxvii
    – Scott Rowe
    Sep 23 at 1:42
  • 1
    Well... wouldn't that be great? You die and get reborn with all your elderly wisdom, while all the poor souls around you live a fresh life and know so much less than you know. 2 days ago

"What if a demon crept after thee into thy loneliest loneliness some day or night, and said to thee: "This life, as thou livest it at present, and hast lived it, thou must live it once more, and also innumerable times; and there will be nothing new in it, but every pain and every joy and every thought and every sigh, and all the unspeakably small and great in thy life must come to thee again, and all in the same series and sequence—and similarly this spider and this moonlight among the trees, and similarly this moment, and I myself. The eternal sand-glass of existence will ever be turned once more, and thou with it, thou speck of dust!"—Wouldst thou not throw thyself down and gnash thy teeth, and curse the demon that so spake? Or hast thou once experienced a tremendous moment in which thou wouldst answer him: "Thou art a God, and never did I hear anything so divine!" If that thought acquired power over thee as thou art, it would transform thee, and perhaps crush thee; the question with regard to all and everything: "Dost thou want this once more, and also for innumerable times?" would lie as the heaviest burden upon thy activity! Or, how wouldst thou have to become favourably inclined to thyself and to life, so as to long for nothing more ardently than for this last eternal sanctioning and sealing?" -Nietzsche,in The Gay Science

I regard what Nietzsche as doing here as offering a gedankenexperiment, a thought-experiment on what a maximal affirmation of life would be, and dispensing with regret.

The Law of Identity would say, either the re-run is exactly the same, and you have no memory of it, and would just make every choice the same, or there is some carry-over some memory or change, and you are a different person. Teletransportation Paradoxes are an established kind of thought-experiment that can help with this. We can look at how an exact copy of you, would be very similar, but increasingly begin to diverge and differentiate. A little like a genetically identical twin, great similarity, but different.

In Buddhist thought there are many descriptions of the kind of endless cycling of lives we are. For instance the exercise to cultivate compassion, of recognising all beings have been your mother and father in past lives. I would argue that if there is some small change or variation between recurrences, those will accumulate, even from somehow exactly the same initial conditions (though, in a non-solipsist picture surely everyone else would have the chance to change a little with each recurrence too), and different 'versions of you're will diverge. So, the better picture becomes the Buddhist one than Nierzsche's trapped replay through the same circumstances. More on this here: Are there specifically Buddhist arguments against the eternal return of the same? A modern picturing of rebirth is the Kurzgesacht video The Egg.

There have been various explorations of what could happen with some freedom to move in time, instead of always moving in one direction. The key thing if this were to apply to humans, would be accounting for what passes from one cycle to another, and it has to account for what we actually experience.

One way to imagine it might be that something from one recurrence, can only change the initial conditions of another, say the genes linked to disposition. In a very real sense if there is a change, the changed is no longer 'you'. But by the same reasoning, we are not completely the same person from day to day. We need to reflect on and consider challenges to our intuitions about identity, and there are tools and thought-experiments like the Ship of Theseus, or Buddhist questions like 'What is your original face from before you were born?'. Only with a picture or definition of identity and continuity, can you explore what recurrence might mean.

  • 1
    Nietzsche isn't above making up his own myths ... the wonder is that people fall for it! Sep 19 at 23:27

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .