I’ve never read anywhere that it happens this way, never heard anyone say they think so. Which doesn’t mean that’s not what happens.
The EEG flattens, the body falls, spasms, something exits.
That thing that exits hangs around out in the ether trying to figure out how it got there for a while. Then comes a voice:
“SO. WHAT DO YOU THINK?”
Looking around isn’t an option. It’s the first input for a while, so the hanging-around something ponders the question a while before deciding on an answer.
“I sure do like them Dodgers.”
“NO. What do you THINK?”
The hanging -around something senses some urgency in the query. Something might be important, and the something is beginning to suspect it’s no longer alive.
“I don’t like illegal aliens, Moslems or welfare. I love God. I always wanted to travel and wanted my son to play football.”
Long, endless pause.
Finally the hanging-around something begins to wonder whether the voice is still present, waiting. In life it was always best to come right out with things, so the hanging-around-something tried to turn the situation around.
“What do YOU think?”
The ether vibrates with something akin to an opening door, a shrug in the air, finality.
“I’M NOT REAL IMPRESSED WITH HUMANITY.”
The door closes.
Leonard Cohen–Everybody Knows
Maybe I should have clarified the question from the beginning.
Seems to me the answers we give to life’s crucial questions are almost never truly spontaneous, but also never the product of clear, careful thinking applied inside skulls by our own brain cells. The body of data we package and label, “What I think” is actually something we had little, or nothing to do with. Rather than examine the source of how we came to ‘think’ it, we just pick it out of the cosmic data pool we percieve as ‘common sense’ and place it lovingly in the folder of what’s important in our lives without giving it any thought at all.
But because we’ve taken ownership of it, staked out claim to it, assigned a value to it, [all done on autopilot] it’s been elevated to the level of truth.
Now we rub our hands together in satisfaction and pronounce, “I think”
Somewhere, someone, sometime needs to actually do it occasionally.
I happen to believe I ought to be one of them, but I’m lousy at it, falling down on the job. My gut feel is that probably everyone ought to be one of them, but it’s plain they’re lousy at it too, falling down on the job.