Yes, the dead are lifeless, unable to hear, see, speak, or think. For example, the Bible says: “The living are conscious that they will die; but as for the dead, they are conscious of nothing at all . . . Their love and their hate and their jealousy have already perished.” The Bible also states: “There is no work nor devising nor knowledge nor wisdom in Sheol [the grave], the place to which you are going.”—Ecclesiastes 9:5, 6, 10.
According to God’s Word, therefore, while people are alive, they are aware of death. When death occurs, however, they are aware of nothing. They do not stand beside their own corpse, observing what is done to it. In nonexistence there is neither pleasure nor pain, neither joy nor sorrow. Those dead are not aware of the passing of time. Theirs is an unconscious state deeper than any sleep.
Job, a servant of God in ancient times, knew that people did not continue to live on after death. He also understood that without God’s intervention, there would be no hope of coming to life again. Job said: “An able-bodied man dies and lies vanquished; and an earthling man expires, and where is he? [He] has to lie down and does not get up.” (Job 14:10, 12) Job certainly did not expect that when he died he would join his ancestors in a world of spirits.