The Afterlife

  • “When we die we may continue to dream, but because we’re dead we can’t wake up.” — Rupert Sheldrake
  • “He hoped and prayed that there wasn’t an afterlife. Then he realized there was a contradiction involved here and merely hoped that there wasn’t an afterlife.” — Douglas Adams, Life, the Universe, and Everything
  • “To die: to sleep;
    No more; and by a sleep to say we end
    The heart-ache and the thousand natural shocks
    That flesh is heir to, ’tis a consummation
    Devoutly to be wish’d. To die, to sleep;
    To sleep: perchance to dream: ay, there’s the rub;
    For in that sleep of death what dreams may come
    When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
    Must give us pause: there’s the respect
    That makes calamity of so long life…” ― William Shakespeare, Hamlet
  • “Even heaven and hell arise just as we think they should be for we are each beings of consciousness creating our own reality.” — Jay Woodman
  • “In sorrow we must go, but not in despair. Behold! we are not bound for ever to the circles of the world, and beyond them is more than memory.” — J.R.R. Tolkien
  • “The soul takes nothing with her to the next world but her education and her culture. At the beginning of the journey to the next world, one’s education and culture can either provide the greatest assistance, or else act as the greatest burden, to the person who has just died.” — Plato, The Republic of Plato
  • “That’s what heaven is. You get to make sense of your yesterdays.” — Mitch Albom, The Five People You Meet in Heaven
  • “All goes onward and outward, nothing collapses,
    And to die is different from what any one supposed, and luckier.” — Walt Whitman
  • “There wasn’t a lot of bullshit in my heaven.” — Alice Sebold, The Lovely Bones
  • “But how can the characters in a play guess the plot? We are not the playwright, we are not the producer, we are not even the audience. We are on the stage. To play well the scenes in which we are ‘on’ concerns us much more than to guess about the scenes that follow it.” — C.S. Lewis
  • “The things that come to us easily, our propensities, are carried on a deep subconscious level into our next life. There are no coincidences.” — Raquel Cepeda, Bird of Paradise: How I Became Latina
  • “Nor dread nor hope attend
    A dying animal;
    A man awaits his end
    Dreading and hoping all.”
    — W.B. Yeats
  • “If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went.” — Will Rogers
  • “They can keep their heaven. When I die, I’d sooner go to Middle Earth.” — George R.R. Martin


  • “Each night, when I go to sleep, I die. And the next morning, when I wake up, I am reborn.” — Mahatma Gandhi
  • “To the well-organized mind, death is but the next great adventure.” — J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
  • “When he shall die,
    Take him and cut him out in little stars,
    And he will make the face of heaven so fine
    That all the world will be in love with night
    And pay no worship to the garish sun.” — William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet
  • “I do not fear death. I had been dead for billions and billions of years before I was born, and had not suffered the slightest inconvenience from it.” — Mark Twain
  • “Cowards die many times before their deaths;
    The valiant never taste of death but once.
    Of all the wonders that I yet have heard,
    It seems to me most strange that men should fear;
    Seeing that death, a necessary end,
    Will come when it will come.” — William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar
  • “It matters not how strait the gate,
    How charged with punishments the scroll,
    I am the master of my fate:
    I am the captain of my soul.” — William Ernest Henley, Echoes of Life and Death
  • “Death is not the opposite of life, but a part of it.” — Haruki Murakami, Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman: 24 Stories
  • “Death is no more than passing from one room into another. But there’s a difference for me, you know. Because in that other room I shall be able to see.” — Helen Keller
  • “The truth is, once you learn how to die, you learn how to live.” — Mitch Albom, Tuesdays with Morrie
  • “For what is it to die but to stand naked in the wind and to melt into the sun? And when the earth shall claim your limbs, then shall you truly dance.” — Kahlil Gibran
  • “If death is this brilliant slide, this high, fine music felt as pure vibration, this plunging float in wind and silence, it’s not so bad.” — Jayne Anne Phillips
  • “No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet, death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it, and that is how it should be, because death is very likely the single best invention of life. It’s life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new.” — Steve Jobs
  • “life’s not a paragraph
    and death i think is no parenthesis” — e.e. cummings
  • “When we die, we will turn into songs, and we will hear each other and remember each other.” — Rob Sheffield, Love Is a Mix Tape
  • “I’m not afraid of death because I don’t believe in it. It’s just getting out of one car, and into another.” — John Lennon
  • “Oh how wrong we were to think immortality meant never dying.” — Gerard Way
  • “All I know is that while I’m asleep, I’m never afraid, and I have no hopes, no struggles, no glories — and bless the man who invented sleep, a cloak over all human thought, food that drives away hunger, water that banishes thirst, fire that heats up cold, chill that moderates passion, and, finally, universal currency with which all things can be bought, weight and balance that brings the shepherd and the king, the fool and the wise, to the same level. There’s only one bad thing about sleep, as far as I’ve ever heard, and that is that it resembles death, since there’s very little difference between a sleeping man and a corpse.” — Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra
  • “Be calm. God awaits you at the door.” — Gabriel Garcí­a Márquez, Love in the Time of Cholera
  • “She laughed and danced with the thought of death in her heart.” — Hans Christian Andersen, The Little Mermaid
  • “To fear death, gentlemen, is no other than to think oneself wise when one is not, to think one knows what one does not know. No one knows whether death may not be the greatest of all blessings for a man, yet men fear it as if they knew that it is the greatest of evils.” — Socrates
  • “Death is a stripping away of all that is not you. The secret of life is to ‘die before you die’ — and find that there is no death.” — Eckhart Tolle
  • “Do not act as if you were going to live ten thousand years. Death hangs over you. While you live, while it is in your power, be good.” — Marcus Aurelius


  • “All that we see or seem is but a dream within a dream.” — Edgar Allan Poe
  • “The very least you can do in your life is figure out what you hope for. And the most you can do is live inside that hope. Not admire it from a distance but live right in it, under its roof.” — Barbara Kingsolver, Animal Dreams
  • “I dream my painting and I paint my dream.” — Vincent Van Gogh
  • “That which you believe becomes your world.” — Richard Matheson, What Dreams May Come
  • “Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake.” — Henry David Thoreau
  • “Day and night I always dream with open eyes.” — José Martí
  • “Am I alive and a reality, or am I but a dream?” — Edgar Rice Burroughs, The Return of Tarzan
  • “Happiness consists in realizing it is all a great strange dream.” — Jack Kerouac
  • “Today a young man on acid realized that all matter is merely energy condensed to a slow vibration, that we are all one consciousness experiencing itself subjectively, there is no such thing as death, life is only a dream, and we are the imagination of ourselves. Here’s Tom with the Weather.” — Bill Hicks
  • “I don’t know anything with certainty, but seeing the stars makes me dream.” — Vincent Van Gogh
  • “I dreamed I spoke in another’s language,
    I dreamed I lived in another’s skin,
    I dreamed I was my own beloved,
    I dreamed I was a tiger’s kin.”I dreamed that Eden lived inside me,
    And when I breathed a garden came,
    I dreamed I knew all of Creation,
    I dreamed I knew the Creator’s name.”I dreamed — and this dream was the finest —
    That all I dreamed was real and true,
    And we would live in joy forever,
    You in me, and me in you.” — Clive Barker, Days of Magic, Nights of War
  • “A book is a dream that you hold in your hands.” — Neil Gaiman
  • “The answer is dreams. Dreaming on and on. Entering the world of dreams and never coming out. Living in dreams for the rest of time.” — Haruki Murakami, Sputnik Sweetheart
  • “It is by no means an irrational fancy that, in a future existence, we shall look upon what we think our present existence, as a dream.” — Edgar Allan Poe
  • “That is where my dearest and brightest dreams have ranged — to hear for the duration of a heartbeat the universe and the totality of life in its mysterious, innate harmony.” — Hermann Hesse, Gertrude
  • “I live in my dreams — that’s what you sense. Other people live in dreams, but not in their own. That’s the difference.” — Hermann Hesse, Demian
  • “What are we after all our dreams, after all our memories?” — Nicholas Sparks, The Notebook
  • “Our revels now are ended. These our actors,
    As I foretold you, were all spirits and
    Are melted into air, into thin air:
    And, like the baseless fabric of this vision,
    The cloud-capp’d towers, the gorgeous palaces,
    The solemn temples, the great globe itself,
    Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve
    And, like this insubstantial pageant faded,
    Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff
    As dreams are made on, and our little life
    Is rounded with a sleep.” — William Shakespeare, The Tempest
  • “Do not lose hope — what you seek will be found. Trust ghosts. Trust those that you have helped to help you in their turn. Trust dreams. Trust your heart, and trust your story.” — Neil Gaiman, Fragile Things: Short Fictions and Wonders (Instructions)
  • “I love the silent hour of night,
    For blissful dreams may then arise,
    Revealing to my charmed sight
    What may not bless my waking eyes.” — Anne Brontë, Best Poems of the Brontë Sisters
  • “As a well spent day brings happy sleep, so life well used brings happy death.” — Leonardo da Vinci
  • “Sleep is God. Go worship.” — Jim Butcher, Death Masks
  • “Life is but a dream for the dead.” — Gerard Way


  • “If the only prayer you said was thank you, that would be enough.” — Meister Eckhart
  • “Something has got to hold it together. I’m saying my prayers to Elmer, the Greek god of glue.” — Tom Robbins
  • “Prayer is a relationship; half the job is mine. If I want transformation, but can’t even be bothered to articulate what, exactly, I’m aiming for, how will it ever occur? Half the benefit of prayer is in the asking itself, in the offering of a clearly posed and well-considered intention. If you don’t have this, all your pleas and desires are boneless, floppy, inert; they swirl at your feet in a cold fog and never lift.” — Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love
  • “You pray in your distress and in your need; would that you might pray also in the fullness of your joy and in your days of abundance.” — Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet
  • “Petting, scratching, and cuddling a dog could be as soothing to the mind and heart as deep meditation and almost as good for the soul as prayer.” — Dean Koontz, False Memory
  • What wings are to a bird, and sails to a ship, so is prayer to the soul.” — Corrie ten Boom
  • “Crying is one of the highest devotional songs. One who knows crying, knows spiritual practice. If you can cry with a pure heart, nothing else compares to such a prayer. Crying includes all the principles of Yoga.” — Kripalvanandji
  • “Go where your best prayers take you.” — Frederick Buechner
  • “I have so much to do that I shall spend the first three hours in prayer.” — Martin Luther
  • “When every hope is gone, ‘when helpers fail and comforts flee,’ I find that help arrives somehow, from I know not where. Supplication, worship, prayer are no superstition; they are acts more real than the acts of eating, drinking, sitting or walking. It is no exaggeration to say that they alone are real, all else is unreal.” — Mahatma Gandhi, The Story of My Experiments With Truth
  • “Prayer is not an old woman’s idle amusement. Properly understood and applied, it is the most potent instrument of action.”— Mahatma Gandhi
  • “may i be i is the only prayer — not may i be great or good or beautiful or wise or strong.” — e.e. cummings
  • “We have to pray with our eyes on God, not on the difficulties.” — Oswald Chambers
  • “I prayed for freedom for twenty years, but received no answer until I prayed with my legs.” — Frederick Douglass, Autobiographies
  • “Those blessings are sweetest that are won with prayer and worn with thanks.” — Thomas Goodwin
  • “The greatest prayer is patience.” — Gautama Buddha
  • “In prayer all are equal.” — Jalaluddin Rumi
  • “More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of.” — Alfred Tennyson
  • “When you pray, you are not to be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on the street corners so that they may be seen by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full. But you, when you pray, go into your inner room, close your door and pray to your Father who is in secret, and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you.” — Jesus, Matthew 6:5-6
  • “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.” — Jesus, John 15:7
  • “So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives; and he who seeks, finds; and to him who knocks, it will be opened.” — Jesus, Luke 11:7-8


  • “Man often becomes what he believes himself to be. If I keep on saying to myself that I cannot do a certain thing, it is possible that I may end by really becoming incapable of doing it. On the contrary, if I have the belief that I can do it, I shall surely acquire the capacity to do it even if I may not have it at the beginning.” — Mahatma Gandhi
  • “Doubt everything. Find your own light.” — Gautama Buddha
  • “Make your own Bible. Select and collect all the words and sentences that in all your readings have been to you like the blast of a trumpet.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • “Re-examine all you have been told. Dismiss what insults your soul.” — Walt Whitman
  • “You have to believe. Otherwise, it will never happen.” — Neil Gaiman, Stardust
  • “Some things have to be believed to be seen.” — Madeleine L’Engle
  • “If you believe in peace, act peacefully; if you believe in love, acting lovingly; if you believe every which way, then act every which way, that’s perfectly valid — but don’t go out trying to sell your beliefs to the system. You end up contradicting what you profess to believe in, and you set a bum example. If you want to change the world, change yourself.” — Tom Robbins
  • “Believing takes practice.” — Madeleine L’Engle, A Wrinkle in Time: With Related Readings
  • “I believe I am in Hell, therefore I am.” — Arthur Rimbaud
  • “That’s the thing about magic; you’ve got to know it’s still here, all around us, or it just stays invisible for you.” — Charles de Lint
  • “Man is what he believes.” — Anton Chekhov
  • “He does not believe that does not live according to his belief.” — Sigmund Freud
  • “The power of human thought grows exponentially with the number of minds that share that thought.” — Dan Brown, The Lost Symbol
  • “The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and science. He to whom the emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand wrapped in awe, is as good as dead —his eyes are closed. The insight into the mystery of life, coupled though it be with fear, has also given rise to religion. To know what is impenetrable to us really exists, manifesting itself as the highest wisdom and the most radiant beauty, which our dull faculties can comprehend only in their most primitive forms—this knowledge, this feeling is at the center of true religiousness.” — Albert Einstein, Living Philosophies
  • “There is almost a sensual longing for communion with others who have a large vision. The immense fulfillment of the friendship between those engaged in furthering the evolution of consciousness has a quality impossible to describe.” — Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
  • “God has no religion.” — Mahatma Gandhi
  • “Life is a game and you are the player. As you master the game, so you also create it.” — Jay Woodman
  • “Have faith in God. Truly I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says is going to happen, it will be granted him. Therefore I say to you, all things for which you pray and ask, believe that you have received them, and they will be granted you.” — Jesus, Mark 11:22-24

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