I was thinking recently about the Spirit World, and how much we will know when we get there. Will a full knowledge of our pre-earth life be restored at that time? What will non-believers think when they realize that death wasn’t the end? Will it be easy to see that Christ’s church is leading the Spirit world or will there be just as much confusion as there is here?
A well-known scripture shed a little light on this for me today.
Whatever principle of intelligence we attain unto in this life, it will rise with us in the resurrection.
Of course we won’t have the full knowledge of our pre-earth life restored unto us in the Spirit World. That will not come until the Resurrection. Our time in the Spirit world is still part of the test of “mortality”. That makes sense because many people accept the gospel in the Spirit world and we can still change and repent there (although we’re told it’s much more difficult to repent there than here – see Alma 34:33-35). The judgment will not have happened yet either, which means the test is certainly not over.
4 thoughts on “What will we know in the Spirit World?”
I also have questions, like what language will we speak, if any? Will we be able to see what is happening in mortality whenever we want? Will we have to find a social circle to associate with? – Gee, it goes on and on. We know very little about the spirit world.
Interesting comments Brandon. I also don’t feel we just “remember” everything after we die. I really don’t know what it’s like, but I get the feeling it will be similar as it is to this life.
This reminds me of one thing I once heard my old Elder’s Qurom President say: (I don’t remember if this was in Elder’s Quorum or Gospel Doctrine class… but he’s also a Seminary Teacher) we should not feel that there are any “second chances” after we die. “This life is the time to prepare to meet God…” (Alma 34:32)
But whether saying after we die is a second chance – or part of this “chance” – I really don’t know. But I would like to work it out here 😉
On a flight home from a business convention, I sat across the aisle from a woman that in the course of our conversation I discovered to be one of the pre-eminent researchers into Near-Death-Experiences (NDE’s), of which I knew a fair amount about prior to our meeting.
From the NDE perspective, it’s not *poof* you’re in the end-state. Most NDE’s are just hanging around locally, until they get ‘summoned’ to be sorted out. That’s where the whole ‘tunnel to the light’ part comes in. The far end of the tunnel, which is not here on this world, is to the person evidently the outskirts of Heaven. People mingling, coming and going, etc. Sooner or later everyone get’s sorted out, whether reunions or judgements.
The case that this researcher expounded on was that of a woman who was blind from near birth, and who thus had no mental comprehension of visual substance or logic. On the Heaven side, she described the communications between people as unusual, but instinctive. Queries and thoughts existed within the beings, and flowed freely without constriction. She recalls large amounts of complex technical knowledge ‘flowing’ into her and ‘existing’ inside her. She was told that she would not be permitted to take that back, but she distinctly senses ‘blanked out’ or ‘inaccessible’ memories.
Also common to NDE cases is the understanding that there is a ‘point of no return’. Their understanding is once they have crossed the threshhold into heaven, there’s no chance to return to mortality. In their travels and communications however they do sense and observe the constant visitations and communications, primarily spirit to spirit.
NDE’s are essentially the only useful non-canonical sources of information we have about the afterlife, and they are nearly all silent about the activities and ministries of those who have crossed the threshold into heaven permanently.
From NDE experiences, generally there is no sensation of the restoration of all knowledge. They are blessed with the opportunity to gain a brief glimpse of the current state, but obviously since they are destined to return to mortality the veil must still be in place. Also relevant to that argument is how although Joseph Smith and Moses could part the veil almost on command, by default it still applied to them, and their parting of the veil enabled them still only tiny glimpses of eternity.
There’s a couple interesting lessons I’ve learned from all this. First is a greater understanding of the communication of intelligence, and the self-existance of intelligence. Second is a better glimpse of the transcendence of spiritual awareness. Sometimes people use the term ‘plane’, really it’s not practical to use classically mortal external references to measure something that is self-existant.
I’ve been playing with the idea that our Brain, which holds our Memories and Knowledge is a separate vehicle from our Spirit, which is a more nebulous, inner force that motivates us and gives us our uniqueness.
I thought that D&C 130:18 is implying something we rarely speak about, that our knowledge and memories of this earth will not be immediately accessible to us in the Spirit World, but only after the Resurrection. In the Spirit World, we will have a recollection of all our guilt, however, which implies that some sort of Aura, Alignment, or “wear and tear” is present on or with our Spirit.
In addition to these quotes, I remember reading a sermon from Brigham Young, although I cannot find it at the moment, where he basically said that it is almost impossible for a Spirit to repent, compared to how it is in this life. Not having our knowledge would really make that true, because we would not know a thing about Churches, Religion, Afterlife… It would be like we are born as a baby again, essentially.
The vail we passed through on entering this mortal life also took away a “brain” or a set of memories, so why wouldn’t the vail at the end of this life do the same? And doesn’t Resurrection reunite our spirit with our body, brain, and our premortal memories as well?
Those are my thoughts, at least. I enjoyed your post, thank you!
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