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The world I built was tailor-made with no distractions, in order to use only what was needed for the stories -- so it is more effective to work on the theme or message.

Note: The distractions are Things, Paths, and Landforms.
Sounds kind of vague, but also makes it seem (to me at least) less like a world and more the set dressing for a stage play. Not saying the story can't be just focused on it's theme or message, should it have one. Definitely going to have to carry it for a stripped down world. Though if the actual message is 'Can I believe I live forever?', all those distractions might definitely help answer it in one way or another. Tests of faith and all being a common thing, be it from a deity or a character themselves.
the set dressing for a stage play.

That's cool! I haven't seen it that way, but now, that you say it, makes even more sense to me. I even have two metaphors for it (for "the set dressing"), and they're called a Frying Pan (a waterhole | store) as a little house in a (day) desert, and, the General R.I.P. Home, a waste, in a (night) desert, both (respectively, an artifact and a terrain) meant to keep Things, Paths, and Landforms as needed by the story or characters or theme-topic-message.
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Not sure if this requires comment, but I can totally get with this. The less defined, the more room to just start working the magic. When I first started, I was looked at the story world similarly, there was no big map, and no definition to where anything was. Just what ever seemed needed to tell a story.

Now I have a map, and it is both good and bad. Allows something that can be followed to help with understanding, but also ties me up with speed of travel an the distances between things. Not gonna say I have never fudged it a little.

Who wants to live forever anyway?
What if you tend to believe that, Don Juan's «Eagle» * is, you know, true!?!

* in The Fire From Within by Carlos Castaneda
How about you sum up the eagle rather than footnote it so others have an easier time following along?
The «Eagle» is according to the Yaqui, in this case the lineage of Don Juan and Carlos Castaneda, god. It gives us life and takes it, when we die -- if we don't reclaim it (that is, our life). That's the difference between living forever and dying forever.
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I'd say a world (that) needs to hear, "Can I believe I live forever?" it's a world which doesn't even exists!

For the context, see specifically, the last line of the first paragraph, here > Portals .
it seem (to me at least) less like a world and more the set dressing for a stage play.

Hey Orc Knight, I'm reading, "The Ultimate Guide to Yin Yang" * and somewhere in the reading I got triggered to Feng Shui and I linked it to your comment #2. And, I had a realization: "My Storyworld is a desert where I put Things, Landmarks and Landforms, according to Feng Shui."

Thank you! ...for the set dressing.

* by Antony Cummins, (2021).