Some friends of our are Jehovah's Witnesses. To start off, I'm not here to slam anybody's faith. They have an interesting and refreshingly open view of Christianity. To hear them talk about their views is more like sharing and less like preaching. We engaged in Bible study because we (my husband and I) were interested in hearing things from the point of view of this much-maligned sect. The concept they have of the Afterlife and reincarnation is, as far as I know, unique. There is no promise of any paradise awaiting the deceased up in the clouds or in some mystical realm. There is no reincarnation. To sum it up, when you die you cease to exist until Jehovah remakes Earth into the Paradise He intended it to be (After Judgment Day, when the wicked will permanently cease to exist, the rest of us get to live forever here on a Paradise Earth, free of pain, want, and other negative things). We went around and around on this. I explained my belief in reincarnation and why I have that belief. They pointed out that the Bible doesn't mention an afterlife. We're not promised a glorious realm in the clouds with Jehovah. Since people like Lazarus didn't come back from the dead talking about Heaven, then it was obvious, by JW teaching, that it didn't exist for the dead. I felt obliged to point out (jokingly) that the Bible also never mentions Jesus passing gas or going to the bathroom, but we can assume he did so. Ultimately the description of life was like a candle. When it's lit, the flame is the spirit. When you snuff the flame, the fire, they said, doesn't go someplace else until a new candle is available. It doesn't linger on. It simply ceases to exist. So where does Jehovah get all those righteous people from who are going to live on Paradise Earth? According to the JWs, they'll be taken from Jehovah's perfect memory. Aha! I said. Then something does live on beyond death! Of course, their question was about why do we forget our past lives. I said that we don't, we just have a very hard time remembering. You know that 3 years, 8 months, and seven days ago you had lunch, but can you remember what you had for lunch? How much harder is it to remember what you did for a living 700 years ago when you've had the trauma of a few deaths between now and then? Tell the story of your current life and see how many significant details you forget even without the trauma of death, I challenged. As I said, we're good friends and I will miss them. (They retired to Mexico a week or so ago.) But it was interesting while they were here to exchange ideas on heavy topics. Since so many people turn JWs away without even listening, I thought I'd share what I learned when we opened the door to them.