I read the manga and am currently watching the anime.

Ryuk once commented that users of the Death Note can neither go to heaven nor hell. (Though one source claimed that this was only a fake rule that Ryuk wrote/spoke.)

This suggests Light becomes a Shinigami. If so, why does Light not continue the work he began on Earth? Does L (who also touched the Death Note) become a Shinigami as well, somehow preventing Light from doing his deeds?

  • 4
    Please, cite the other source that claims contrary.
    – Braiam
    Apr 13, 2014 at 2:25
  • 1
    relevant: anime.stackexchange.com/questions/14/…
    – Maroon
    Apr 13, 2014 at 3:28
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    I'm not sure if I'm remembering this right but I'm sure I read something that said Ryuk's statement was a bit of misdirection. He only said that Death Note users don't go to heaven or hell, omitting that this applies to everybody else too. Dec 6, 2014 at 12:41
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    @JamesO'Neill In fact, it's not much later when Light calls out Ryuk on his obfuscation. In the sense that he comments to the effect "When you said that, what you really meant was that there is neither heaven nor hell to begin with, right?", to which Ryuk gives a wry smile and, I believe, compliments Light on his perceptiveness. Nov 20, 2016 at 19:37

6 Answers 6


Ryuk once commented that users of the Death Note can neither go to heaven nor hell. (Though one source claimed that this was only a fake rule that Ryuk wrote/spoke.)

No, the claim/source is incorrect. Anyone who uses/writes in the Death Note can neither go to heaven nor hell. This can be seen as Purgatory or 無 MU/Nothingness

This suggests Light becomes a Shinigami.

Wrong. :) The rules of the Death Note have been explicitly stated in both the anime and manga as stated by Braiam which was...

The human who uses the notebook can neither go to Heaven nor Hell and die an unfilling and unhappy life.

Finally touching the Death Note does not make you a Shinigami, although touching it allows you to see the Shinigami.

  • 2
    While Light doesn't become a Shinigami, Ryuk does state that he would make a Good Shinigami because of how he uses the Death Note, he makes this comment i think the episode "Deal" when Ryuk mentionsthe eye deal after Light says "If i keep bargain for Eyes and Wings i'll probably end up becoming a Shinigami". i think this is where the misunderstanding comes from. Ryuk is in no way saying that Light will become one when he dies so the rules of the Death Note apply, and the fake rules were in the back from what i remember written just before Light got locked up.
    – Memor-X
    Apr 13, 2014 at 23:19

Shinigamis are not in heaven nor hell.

They are all bored and unhappy and do not lead fulfilling lives. Cased closed. Light is the unnamed Shinigami. Remember Light's tie or the bag he carried with him in the beginning? Think of all the Shinigamis that were introduced. Even though Ryuk said all Shinigamis love apples, he was the only one we saw eating any. The unnamed Shinigami in the 5 minute clip continuation threw him an apple as Light did when living, and he did not stay for the rest of Ryuk's story as if he already knew how it ended.

  • Nice theory but 100% out of canon. Do you have any fan-diycussion or other source of this? I'd like to read more of thie conspiracy theorys.
    – hajef
    Jun 21, 2017 at 12:51

Those are mere speculations. There were only two things that Ryuk said about the usage of the Death Note by humans:

  1. All of them die while being unhappy, in despair.
  2. Their soul doesn't go to either hell or heaven.

This was said in both, the manga and the anime and none of the other Shinigami said about the matter.


I have done a ton of research and my conclusion is, how are shinigami created in the first place, then I thought something, maybe shinigamis are human who died in possession of the death note but with no shinigami to take it from them (they also don't remember being human). But light as we all know is one of the smartest beings alive so maybe he might've become a shinigami but found a loop hole to be able to remember a bit of his previous life. Maybe he goes back down there to find out about everything or to continue his previous goal.


I believe I remember in the end of the manga, Ryuk said that Light would go to MU(Nothingness). This was immediately after Light died.

I took that to mean that he simply ceased to exist.

  • 1
    You might want to cite that it's from chapter 107 of the manga.
    – nhahtdh
    Jan 22, 2015 at 18:34

Light Yagami ultimately died as Ryuk himself took his life by writing his name in his Death Note just before Light suffered from a bullet wound. Ryuk had promised Light that if such a situation ever happened, he would set Light free by writing his name in his Death Note.

Update: You can read about it in the first episode of Death Note where Ryuk talks about killing Light using his death note at 14:50 into the episode.

And regarding what happens to Light after he dies is probably the Shinigami realm where his life span becomes equal to the number of lives he has taken using the death note. You can read about it here http://bit.ly/1xFOBns

  • There is no reason to believe having his name written in the book would allow him to be sent to heaven or hell or behave as if he never wrote in the death note.
    – kaine
    Jan 22, 2015 at 18:03
  • @kaine yeah I guess you are right ! So after death Light apparently goes to Shinigami realm where his life is equal to the number of people he killed. I read about it here bit.ly/1xFOBns Jan 22, 2015 at 23:28
  • @Geniusknight your alternative ending link is non-canonical (i.e., not official).
    – кяαzєя
    Jan 23, 2015 at 0:31
  • @ʞɹɐzǝɹ yeah I know but that timeline certainly makes sense and I read the in the alternate version, the one in black and white was created by one of the popular artists in an attempt to continue the plot of the original manga Jan 23, 2015 at 2:49

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