The Importance of the Afterlife. Seriously. - NYTimes.com
Salim Ismail stashed this in Philosophy
the article should just tell you to read The Children of Men. That plus some Shakespeare will get you the same conclusions.
There is also a lesson here for those who think that unless there is a personal afterlife, their lives lack any meaning or purpose. What is necessary to underwrite the perceived significance of what we do, it seems, is not a belief in the afterlife but rather a belief that humanity will survive, at least for a good long time.
Plus, the light from our actions travels outward through the universe for billions of years.
So, what we do in this life echoes in eternity.