This study analyzes the narrative of the next world represented in Part “Rebirth” of Taiping Guangji by dividing it into spatial, emotional, and material imagination.
In the spatial aspect, the next world was perceived as a space that exists above the sky rather than underground. However, despite the spatial difference between this world and the next world, from the Chinese view of the next world was also depicted as similar to the real life in this world.
In the emotional aspect, the living and the dead must live in their respective worlds that are divided into this world and the next world by death, but it was found that the ancient Chinese tried to overcome the fear of death by believing that the two worlds are not permanently separated and imagining links that would connect them in several forms.
In the material aspect, it was considered that the concept of paper money and the use of it for funerals were based on the ancient Chinese's consideration for the dead in terms of a material tribute.
The narrative of the next world discussed in this study is an affirmation of life that continues in any form after death, and a representation of an active worldview that does not consider death as the end of everything. The love, regrets, sorrows, and desires depicted as experienced by the living and the dead in these stories are not new to us today.