The beginning of my Photography domain.
As I have said previously I constructed a questionnaire to further my research, and help with the development for my ideas towards what I would include within my photographs for my final piece. With the amount I received back I was pleased with the range of beliefs I got. Although I was on the other hand slightly disappointed that I didn’t get as much as a variety of religions as I wanted, I still however got a wide range of beliefs and opinions people have as to what happens to them when they die. I was surprised that the amount of people who expressed that they withhold no religion, actually had more of a belief and opinion to those that do. They were more imaginative and also you can say positive on the subject in a way they look at is hoping that there is something after death.
One point of me doing this project that carries the subject is does is because I sensed that it was one that is feared by a high majority of people, because it is unknown and will always be. I want the final piece I make to enlighten the people that view it in some way, and to make it a subject that shouldn’t be feared as in conclusion it does indeed happen to all of us.
Findings and Responses to the Questions:
Christians – 3
Catholic – 3
Islam – 3
Buddhist – 1
Sikhism – 1
No Religion – 15
Christian Responses and Beliefs:
Two believed death was a fear and an end, they were scared of missing out on future life experiences and missing loved ones. The other stated that they believe its an end of one life and another begins – they feel optimistic. They felt a fear of it going into the unknown, that its the end of everything and the wondering and worry whether there is anything else afterwards. Christians I asked said they believed there was no such thing as fate, that when you go you go it’s your time but there’s that belief in the chance of a spiritual life or afterlife. I also had a question in my questionnaire asking what they would like to do in there last days, and the responses I got were that they would either; go somewhere they had never been before or spend it with their family and loved ones.
Catholic Responses and Beliefs:
The catholic beliefs shown within my questionnaire mostly feared death. They expressed the belief that when we die we can’t experience anything, that there is nothing. One response was that we build and build our lives for years then it all just goes, so they questioned why did we work so hard to build our lives when we just one day go anyway? Again in relation to other responses, they were scared of what we don’t know is going to happen. It’s the end of your life and you can no longer spend time with anyone that you love. Catholics believe in the concept of heaven and hell, and that you meet up with the people you have lost in your life .
Islam Responses and Beliefs:
They expressed a fear towards the subject of death as you are judged by God. They believe that it is am end to a life and a beginning of a new one, through the means of heaven and hell. Once you are dying it’s a scary though that you are leaving your loved ones behind and not knowing what happens next, dependant on the good or bad deeds you have done throughout your life sets a guarantee on what happens to you after death. They hold the assumption that death is the end of their life in this world, but don’t have a clear knowledge of what exactly happens next. The belief that you have no say in death, it’s up to God, you only know that one day you will die, just not a specific one it is out of your control. In comparison to the beliefs of Catholics, Islam believers also carry the belief in the day of judgement based on your good and bad deeds. Heaven and hell, your soul goes to God and he then decides where you go. There is also the belief expressed in eternal afterlife. In the question I asked on where they would spend their last days, it would either be in Saudi Arabia the Holy City or with family and loved ones.
No Religion Responses and Beliefs:
This was the most response I received from doing this questionnaire, people that withheld no religious belief yet still had some form of opinion and thought on what could happen when they reach death. It was a mixed of both fear and under the category of other, that people felt towards the subject mainly again like all of the other people I spoke to, that they had that initial fear of the ‘unknown’. Also carrying the fear on how others will feel in the event of their death, the people they will leave behind, where it will happen and when. I got a response of one participant saying they believed in reincarnation into an animal, which is a similar belief from the Buddhist Religion. Then another wrote that they hoped we would start a new human life with no memory of our old one we lived before. Some even reflected on being intrigued, as they would be completing this life and shouldn’t fear death they should see it as an accomplishment as their life would have no meaning without an end. Another thought that enlightened me came from one participant believing that when we are gone we fall into an eternal sleep and rot without consciousness. In comparison to that of the people that withheld religious beliefs, the participants expressed a fear of loosing people they loved, and when they are gone leaving them behind. This appeared many times throughout my questionnaire. The responses that mostly gained my attention from this group were; the belief in that we have guardian angels, that when our loved ones pass they watch over us, and we reciprocate that when we ourselves die. Also that there was no belief, that we just go, which as said above is like eternal sleep. A development of questions appeared through the responses I got from this group, which in my opinion I feel threads from the fact that the participants hold no religious beliefs, so they have to almost come up with their complete own opinion on the subject.
Overall with the use of putting together a question for the main part of my primary research for my FMP, has had many benefits towards the project. It is what stemmed the outcome of the finalised idea I now have for my project, and has given it that much needed substance and question to ask. It has also provided my with ideas on what I shall photograph, what representations I can pursue with the responses I have gained from the people that took part.
Personally it has made me broaden my own thoughts towards this particular subject I have chosen to focus on for my FMP. I feel is has made me be less judgemental, I myself do not hold a religion but I do have an opinion when it comes to death, with the responses I have gained through this process it has made me develop in my own personal thoughts.