Why is it that religionists accept the concept of heaven without thinking it through to its logical conclusions? To them, that is what this world is all about. Live your life within the guidelines of morality, as dictated by a book that could not be more irrelevant to the modern world, so that you may enter the kingdom of heaven …. otherwise ye shall be condemned to the firey pits of hell. Oh yeah – it’s for eternity, by the way. Eternity. As in forever and ever and ever and ever.
Maybe it’s just me, but when you add that “eternity” caveat, doesn’t that make both versions of the afterlife seem like nothing to look forward to? Of all the vacations that I have ever taken, and of all the vacations that I would like to take but can’t afford to, I cannot imagine one that I wouldn’t eventually be sick of. You could send me to my own private island in the most beautiful Caribbean waters on earth, with all the free amenities, servants, delicious food and drink that I can partake in – it may take a year, it may take 5 years, but eventually it will get old and I will want to get the hell out of there. Maybe I’m off a bit, and it would take 20 years to become painfully tired of such an environment – but what is 20 years in comparison to eternity? Maybe it will take 1,000 years to get sick of it, but again - what is 1,000 years in comparison to eternity?
There is virtually nothing that a billionaire cannot afford to buy, and consequently I imagine that not much of anything falls into the category of a luxury at that point. If heaven is a land of milk and honey where you are richly rewarded with anything you desire, what would you have a desire for that would last an eternity?
If hell is eternal, wouldn’t you get used to that burning sensation pretty quickly? What is torture if you cannot eventually die from it? How do trillions of souls, who cannot die again, not stand up to one devil and change their environment? How does that devil manage to control all those souls and still find time to mess with mortals on earth?
If doing things like gambling, partying, having sex, cursing, telling lewd jokes, not going to church, working on a Sunday, etc. is what lands you in hell, and doing things like singing religious hymns, proselytizing, going to church, and living a quiet, sanitized life of utter mediocrity is what gets you into heaven, which kind of souls would you rather be surrounded by for ETERNITY? Once you get beyond the paradise surroundings, and you are sick to death of being waited on hand and foot, and tired of playing golf every single day with gold plated clubs and diamond tipped golf balls, and don’t want to ever see another luxury item again – the only thing you will have left to suffer through eternity with will be the trillions of other souls who you are surrounded by. It sickens me to think of myself ever being that position.
Once you think it through, the fact is that the only just reward that a god could ever grant would be the opportunity to come back to earth, or some other non-eternal place, and do it all over again. If I can’t have that, then leave me to disintegrate into the earth and become a part of whatever else happens to absorb me. The heaven concept sounds grand, but thanks to that eternity clause it will eventually be as maddening as hell.
Okay, so you would be expected to have a sexual relationship with God as well as feed it doggy chow and pat it. LOL!
If you want to read about a "heaven" from a rather different perspective, I heartily recommend Robert Heinlein's Job: A Comedy of Justice. His heaven is a bureaucratic nightmare where the left hand rarely knows what the right is doing and where R. H. I. P. seems to be among the primary rules of the road, yet somehow the dictum of the bible still manages to maintain ... and it is worth at least a chuckle in places. Of course, hell comes into the equation as well, and Heinlein gives us his own unique take on that.
Heinlein has taken on religion in at least a couple of his novels, but nowhere quite so head-on as with Job.
Sounds right up my alley. I'll look for it when I return my current load of library books.
I find the biggest problem with the concept of Heaven and all theists wishful thinking that they will meet their departed love ones there is that considering the difficulty of gaining a spot in Heaven and human nature, there is very little chance any of them will ever meet any of their love ones there.
They have a 99.9% better chance of meeting all of them in Hell.
So, I find the entire concept extremely idiotic indeed.ROFL! :D Theists are funny!
Good thing the afterlife is eternal, since it would take you an eternity to find anyone in sea of infinite souls. What's so enjoyable about that?
One of the main reasons I am opposed to Heaven is that I have no desire whatsoever to see my relatives again.
This discussion reminds me of the musings of the late Christopher Hitchens. In commenting about his impending death, he stated that unlike the old adage about how the party's about to be over, it's more like the party's going to continue, but without you. You must leave while everyone else gets to stay. An eternal afterlife, on the other hand, is the never ending party. No matter how much you may want to leave and call it quits, you can't.
In the words of Theodore Cleaver (Leave It To Beaver) to his older brother, "That's really creepy, Wally."
That IS really creepy! lol Pat. :)
This reminds me of "The existential horror of being trapped in an LMFAO music video"... HA! They get tired of it after just two days. Imagine what eternity would be like. ;)
It appears that in order to contemplate the nature of heaven, one needs to not believe in its existence.
Do even theists give it this much “thought”?
Then again, it is kinda fun.
"Theists" and "thought" in the same sentence? You're kidding, right?
I have thought for quite some time, that the concept of heaven negates the argument for the necessity of evil. If there is only good, no evil in heaven, then evil is not a necessary thing. So a claim that evil exists on earth out of necessity, is wrong. If evil is a human invention, to get people to obey the rules set up by the religions, then it makes sense, and there is no heaven.