Where do people go after dying?

The inevitable question surfaced – “Where do people go after dying?”.

One evening, during the week Dhruv and I were staying at my parents’ place, Dhruv was sitting with my father during his puja (prayer) and he asked Papa this question.

Dhruv: Nanu, where do people go after dying?

Nanu: People after dying go to God.

Dhruv (placing his hand over his heart):
But, God lives here in my heart.

He meant how can he hold (so many) people in his heart because he is a small child.

My parents were astonished with his answer. Even I did not know how he got this understanding that God lives in our hearts but then, now, I am not the only one who alone influences his thought process. His interaction in the social space extends beyond his family to his school, school bus, friends and of course television too.

I have thought about this. The next time this question comes to me, my answer will be “When people die they become angels to those whom they loved dearly and they stay with their loved ones forever.”

And then I am sure I have to find further explanations to “Who are angels?, Do they stay in the same house? Do they eat food or sleep?” or questions which are, at present, beyond my imagination.

Would you like to share with me how would you handle this question?

Linking up with Microblog Mondays at Stirrup Queens and #MondayMusings

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16 thoughts on “Where do people go after dying?

  1. Vinitha says:

    Ooh that’s a tough one. Honestly even I’m not sure. Kanna didnt ask this question but we had a conversation on death when we passed a cemetery. The follow up questions are harder.

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  2. Mel says:

    It’s beautiful that he jumped there.

    We went very straightforward with our answer, and remember that we’re not Christian, so we don’t believe in Heaven and angels et al. So we explained that your body stops and your mind stops, but you live on in the people who remember you on earth. That when we make recipes or revisit places where we think about the person, they have another moment in the living world. We scattered one grandmother’s ashes specifically in a location that is often televised so every time it appears on TV, we all call out, “Hello, Grandma!” Hopefully that tradition will pass down a few generations. One day there will be people who never knew Grandma who say it without knowing why they say it, but she lives on, nonetheless.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Lata Sunil says:

    I tell the same.. as kids who are very young may not comprehend. But, if they are in their teens, you can just tell them without any fancy wordings. Most of the time, they figure it out. Recently, my teenaged son had asked me, Does God Exist? – Another stupefying question there.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. md says:

    i once told my twins that god lives up in the sky.. their follow up questions were a nightmare 😛
    i am learning that it is best to give them short, simple answers, and then immediately move on to another topic.. but it is all a learning process.. there are no right or wrong answers, you just have to go with what feels right in the moment.

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  5. Vasantha Vivek says:

    Great but unanswerable question, I think …. I would love to answer as ” They finished their school studies on earth and were going for higher studies on heaven “…. 🙂 ….. But I should also be ready for answering a fire of questions to be shot following this answer …. 😛

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  6. Journeywoman says:

    I remember asking my paternal grandmother this after my maternal grandmother died. She looked at me and said “They go on to the next adventure and it is a fabulous one.”
    “How do you know it’s fabulous?”
    “Because it is so good they don’t come back and talk about it. I love a good adventure, don’t you?”
    I remember how certain she sounded. I remember how wise she sounded, and it helped me when she went on that next adventure.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Traci York says:

    What a beautiful family moment about a very difficult topic. We’ve had many discussions with our three children over the years about beliefs and such, and my answer would be far too complex for this reply. However, I think his understanding, and your plan for future questions, are both wonderful.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. sunainabhatia says:

    It is so difficult to answer questions like these. Tell him it is a special place that God has made. Let him grow up with that for a while. Then you will face new thoughts, new queries. That’s how children are – curious and innocent.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Mali says:

    I love his conviction. I’m not religious, and I’m a traveller, so I love the “fabulous adventure” explanation! I also love Mel’s discussion about remembering them, and I think that, if I had been lucky enough to have children, I would have used that.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. lifestyleproblog says:

    Dhruv is so smart! And what you said about other influences is so true… i liked the answers you have thought of.. I think I am going to use them when such questions crop up… cant help thinking that it is too soon to be having such conversations!

    Like

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