The first thing one must do in order to determine the truth of any matter is to find a reliable source of information on the subject you are investigating. In your case, “Is there an afterlife?” That search must be made strictly within the rules of a reliable method of determining the truth from the reliable source – a scientific method if you will, utilizing the four key points of determining scientific fact: it has to be observable, testable, repeatable, and falsifiable, following the established / normative rules of language, context and logic of the language one is communicating in to perform such a scientific operation and get a reliable/trustworthy result.
According to science, the scientific method is limited by that which can be observed, tested, reproduced and falsified. That which lies outside of these parameters is not science but is in the realm of the un-testable – the unproved, and therefore unreliable.
But now we have arrived at the first hurdle. Can the afterlife be observed, tested, reproduced and falsified? No! So then we must find a reliable source of information that addresses the subject of the afterlife by utilizing the established / normative rules of language, context and logic which provides the most plausible description of the afterlife. Dreams are not provably reliable because they neither can be observed, nor tested, nor reproduced nor falsified especially person to person, time to time, account / book to book. For when dreams which occurred at different times and/or with different people and/or are described via author’s extra biblical accounts of them are compared to one another in detail / scientifically, they prove to be contradictory and illogical; hence they do not prove to be consistent and reliable. On the other hand the Bible’s accounts when examined properly, scientically are wholly consistent and without contradiction. Since it can be observed that the Bible – all 66 books which are authored by some 40+ authors, over a period of over 1500 years, which have been properly and accurately translated from the most reliable manuscripts of the original language texts as determined by the proper rules of interpretation into the most accurate versions of the languages of the world indeed does address this topic of the afterlife, and since such an interpretation has an extremely – even supernatural, inerrant – reliable reputation for being a source of great significance, it behooves one to examine it in order to rule it out or in as a reliable source on this subject by each individual of accountable age.
upon careful examination of the Bible it becomes evident that the
authors who wrote every word exclusively utilized the normative rules
of language, context and logic; and in the absence of evidence anywhere
in the Bible or elsewhere that it is to be interpreted with a
specialized set of rules outside of what man - to whom the Bible was
written - would normally expect; and in view of the evidence that a
strict adherence to the normative rules of language, context and logic
produces the most trustworthy, non-contradictory, immutable, consistent
interpretation; we must thereupon follow the writers' plan of how to
interpret their work of the Bible. So having studied the topic of the
after life and other topics that are closely related to it, we can be
confident that we indeed do have a trustworthy source for determining
what happens when one dies.
Whereupon one can proceed to investigate the Bible on the subject of the afterlife via those normative rules.
I suggest the following studies which might give you a valid
perspective on the subject of the afterlife as it comes from a wholly
reliable source: the Bible:
immortality.htm - Immortality and Everlasting Life
sheol_hades.htm - Sheol, Hades, Paradise and Gehenna
heavenbound.htm - Believers go directly to heaven when they die
quran.htm#IA - Resurrection appearances prove out Jesus in the after life