It’s not true that your life flashes before your eyes when you die. At least, not all of it. Some of your life might flash. Other portions of your life it might take you years and years to recall. That, I think, is the function of Hell: It’s a place of remembering. Beyond that, the purpose of Hell is not so much to forget the details of our lives as it is to forgive them.
Reread that Bronte book all you want, but Jane Eyre’s never going to get gender-reassignment surgery or train to become a kick-ass ninja assassin.
It’s obsequious little nicety-nice girls like me who allow assholes to run the world: Miss Harlot O’Harlots, billionaire phony tree huggers, hypocrite drug-snorting, weed-puffing peace activists who fund the mass-murdering drug cartels and perpetuate crushing poverty in dirt-poor banana republics. It’s my petty fear of personal rejection that allows so many true evils to exist. My cowardice enables atrocities.
I can become someone else, not out of pressure and desperation, but merely because a new life sounds fun or interesting or joyful.
“Death is a long process,” Archer says. “Your body is just the first part of you that croaks.” Meaning: beyond that, your dreams have to die. Then your expectations. And your anger about investing a lifetime learning shit and loving people and earning money, only to have all that crap come to basically nothing. Really, your physical body dying is the easy part. Beyond that, your memories must die. And your ego. Your pride and shame and ambition and hope, all that Personal Identity Crap can take centuries to expire.