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The idea of an afterlife is central to almost all religions, and the idea of heaven, hell, and how you get there has been depicted in art across the world. Our anticipation of what lies beyond the grave has ranged from the purity of a higher place to the gruesome depths below. But why do we have these broadly shared ideas? Is it simply society trying to police individual behavior? The promise of heaven and the threat of hell have, for some societies, been a carrot-and-stick device to aid the maintenance of the status quo. Throughout the film, Tim asks whether artistic depictions of the afterlife are the expression of deep spirituality or the product of society’s need to police individual behavior. Above all, the film provides a new fresh look at some of art’s greatest works.
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