Photo: George Burns/Harpo Studios
Since she believes the soul is everlasting, Shirley says she does not attend funerals—in her belief system, no one ever dies.
"Nobody's dead, so why am I going to a funeral?" she says.
Shirley believes that instead of dying, people shed their bodies and literally pass on. "[You] go to another level of understanding until you decide to come back to the schoolroom again—Earth," she says. "It could be that you decide to reincarnate on another planet. That's why we're so interested in star nations and extraterrestrials and so forth, because we probably had experiences there and it's in our memory system."