The Moment After Death
Updated: May 10, 2022
Writing prompt: All religions are real and the world just ended.
How did I get here? Jake looked around at the surrounding people packed into the white abyss. Slowly he was being shoved towards the same direction as the person in front of him. The last thing he remembered was a sudden blast then, Poof! Here he was alongside thousands.
There has to be some kind of mistake, He continued to think as he suddenly heard several shouts in front. The closer he got, the louder they had become as several people stood holding signs and waving their arms.
"Christians over here! Line up in the denomination once you've reached the markers!"
"Buddhists this way. You can choose your reincarnation after having tea and a group meditation!"
Jake stopped, allowing several people to push past as they began to herd towards the shooting men on stands, boxes and even rocks that lined against several gates, halls and building entrances. They were dressed in robes of different colours, sizes and even emblems related to each religion. To his belief, it reminded him of a university club week trying to recruit members for their activities. Jake made his way towards the closest man who was standing under a booth. The sign above was blurry as it shimmered with different symbols and characters before clearing up into a language he understood. It read, "Information booth."
Jake waited until the man finished pointing to the lost soul before stepping up to inquire about his own fate. "Good Sir, I-"
The robed man interrupted. "Oh no no, I am not good. I am neutral. How may I help you?"
Jake bit his tongue a moment before giving it a shake. What an odd person!
“Hi, I am a little confused about what is going on here!”
Without hesitation, he replied to Jake.
“Well, you are dead. Which faith, belief or ideal did you follow in your life?”
Jake blinked for a moment. How could this man be so blunt!
The being before him gave a small sigh while giving a sympathetic smile. “This is the gates to your end. Everyone has different thoughts and believes and we are here to help direct them to the appropriate one.”
Jake shook his head. “What if they aren’t sure and change their mind?”
The man pointed towards a building behind them and to the side, one Jake didn’t see before on his way. “That there is a presentation where you can see the benefits and information clearly. Sometimes down on Earth, it gets a little muddied by changes and misinterpretations. For those who are still unsure, they can stand by the gates in a waiting area to observe until they have decided.”
Jake scratched at his head. “But what of those who believed in hell and satan? If they know they are going to be judged harshly and meet their demise, why would they choose that!”
The man chortled. “Oh, you mortals. Fear isn’t always the driving factor to the decisions made in your lives. That you can clear up when you meet the doorkeeper where he can judge your life. Either you believe you were “good” or “bad” is all placed on a biased perspective. All we care about is making sure you get to the right place you want to be.”
“Well can I leave if I change my mind?”
The man scoffed, throwing his hands up. “Well of course! Seems kind of silly to stay in one place forever! Of course, you need to meet the requirements or terms needed before making religion changeovers, but that will be covered by the gatekeeper as well when he gives you the pamphlet.”
Jake stood perplexed. Was everything really that easy compared to what they believed on earth?
“Well, what if I was an atheist?”
The being lightened up. “Oh, well if you didn’t believe in any of the religions, then you must be the new helper! Take a robe of any colour and see who needs help ushering the lost souls to the right gate. You will figure out things fine. If you need anything else, let me know!”
And with that, Jake looked at the lined boxes behind the booth and picked a robe. What a strange place this is. He donned his robe and off he went to help the people.