What is Heaven? Why MOST People WANT To Go to Heaven While Some .......WELL.....
What is Heaven
The afterlife has been in the human consciousness since primordial times. Humankind has developed a knowing that there is an existence and life beyond the temporal and/or physical life. Humans also believed that there was a reward and/or punishment in the afterflife for actions and deeds done in this life.
This belief in the afterlife is what religions were constructed upon. The main emphasis of many religions, ancient and modern, were based upon the premise of actions equals reactions. If one's deeds were deemed good and he/she led a life of goodness, he/she would receive a good reward in the afterlife. Conversely, if one's deeds were reprehensible and he/she led a less than honorable life, he/she would be punished in the afterlife.
Many religions believed that there was a place where there was ultimate goodness. They viewed that place as symbolic of beauty, peace, and nirvana. They maintain that this place was the place of a benevolent deity and his/her helpmates or angels. There were some religions who viewed such a place as a place of the ultimate beauty and light. While to others, this place was a place of everlasting revelry as a reward for an arduous life. Humankind was taught that this was THE place that all should aspire and want to go after their death.
Heaven or its equivalent was/is thought to be such a place. It is believed that everyone in his/her right mind would want to go to Heaven. To think otherwise, in many people's mind, would be total preposterous. Heaven is seen as the ultimate lottery win because it is believed that Heaven is the quintessential perfect place, it is a place without worry, difficulties, and any type of woes. Furthermore it is a place without any mortal and/or earthly limitations. It is THE ULTIMATE of ultimates.
Heaven is Viewed..............AS
It is the ultimate desire, hope, and dream of most people that they go to Heaven when they die. However this concept of Heaven is as varied as there are people on this planet. To the more traditional and religiously minded people, Heaven is viewed as a place where one is in the presence of a benevolent deity, His/Her representative, and/or other beneficent entities. It is also seen as a place where earthly and mortal concerns/problems are nonexistent. It is furthermore perceived as a place where there is no more error and sin. In essence, the traditional and religious minded believe that heaven is a reward for leading a very moral life.
There are those who feel that Heaven is a reward for a hellish life on earth. They contend that after a difficult even hellish life, there have got to be some type of unearthly reward and/ or that there has to be something better than their abysmal life. Then there are more extreme people who maintain that the purpose of their lives is to prepare for the time they wll go to heaven. A few even view their lives as a penance. These are the people who forgo worldly pleasures and situations, indicating that such matters are transitory and temporary, even distracting and evil. They maintain that their primary concern is getting into Heaven and nothing else is of significance.
There are some who see Heaven as the highest consciousness. They do not view Heaven in traditional religious terms. To them, it is merely acquiring a higher, more positive level of consciousness. A few assert that Heaven is a state of the highest level of spiritual positivity. They maintain that when one reaches such an exalted state, all negativity and connection to one's baser desires dissolve to be replaced by a the ultimate in spiritual awareness and consciousness.
Others see Heaven as merging with the Godhead or Ultimate Consciousness. They believe that upon physical death, they become reunited with the source of the universe. It is believed to be the absorption of their essence into this Godhead or Ultimate Consciousness. They know that in Heaven, they and the Godhead are ONE. A few view Heaven as evolving spiritually to the ultimate blissful state or absolute nirvana. To them, Heaven is an indescribable and unimaginable state of positivity. In fact, they contend that it is beyond the most superlative level of positivity.
You Really DON'T Want To GO To THAT OTHER Place-Hell
Most people want to go to Heaven because they do not want to go to Hell. The concept and idea of Hell have been used by religions as a fear tactic for milennia. It has been used by religionists for the purpose of getting people to conform to their idea of a moral life. Hell has been further used to sway people away from the concerns of the physical, material, and temporal world to a world which is spiritual.
There are people who have a morbid fear, even dread of Hell. It is viewed as a place which is beyond heinous and abysmal. It is described as a place of eternal punishment and torture. It is thought to be a place where malevolent spirits dwell. As a result of such inculcation, many people lead a fear-based life, believing that if they deviate from this fear-based paradigm, they will be condemned to Hell.
There are some who have such an extreme phobic, even psychotic apprehension of Hell that they see life in general as a continual, even neverending basis of tempation, evil, even sin to be avoided or at the most merely tolerated if they do not wish to end up in Hell. Such people contend that even the simplest pleasures are sources of sin and ultimately Hell, believing that in order to avoid such, one's life should be based upon denunciation of pleasure and joy. Life, to them, is an exercise as to avoid the physical, material, and/or temporal world unless it is necessary to interact with it. They feel that by shunning this world and becoming unworldly, they will end up in Hell.
Others perceive Hell to be the lowest abject state of consciousness. To them, it symbolizes a regression in one's state of consciousness. They do not fear Hell but contend that the purpose of their lives is to evolve to a higher state of consciousness, not to devolve. They contend that if they do devolve into a lower state of consciousness, their lives would be an utter exercise in futility.
A few see Hell as numbling negativity as the worst, abysmal kind. To them, it represents an unimaginable level and state of negativity which is beyond any type of human description. They perceive it to be an abysmal and bleak hopelessness from which there is no type of respite. They see it as being enveloped in utter and wretched darkness. Still others believe Hell as total obliteration of their being and consciousness, disappearing into nothingness.
There are people who are neutral, even quite indifferent, regarding the subject of Heaven. They maintain that Heaven is a sweet, soothing myth, nothing more and nothing less. They contend that the concept and belief in Heaven is simply outdated and has no place in the postmodern world. It is their assertion that Heaven was instituted with the purpose of giving people hope at a time and place where there was no hope from a less than ideal existence.
They argue that the idea of Heaven was appropriate in a more, simpler, and prescientific time. They maintain that people believed in Heaven when there were very little scientific explanations for the causes and effects of human life and events in the universe. They further state that Heaven was used as a method of positive reinforcement, even encouragement for the collective human psyche.
However, they assert that with the gradual advancements of technology and science in addition to the improvements in society, the idea of Heaven is best to be discarded as a relic of an earlier era. They indicate that humankind has reached such an advanced state of knowledge that the idea of Heaven would be a contradiction to such knowledge. They further proclaim that it is the duty, even obligatoin of humankind to create heaven-like conditions on earth, not to hold on to the antiquated belief of a mythical Heaven.
Heaven as ...........the ULTIMATE Con Job and Pipedream
Some people have a vitriolic reaction to the mention of Heaven. To them, the concept of Heaven is one of the greatest con jobs in the history of humankind. They maintain that because of this concept, many people believed in religions which proved detrimental, even toxic, to them emotionally, mentally, and psychologically, even psychically. They further assert that because of this idea, people subverted their joy of living, fearing that if they enjoy life in its many aspects, they would forfeit Heaven.
They further insist that religions have used this idea to create a pipedream, stating that there is a life much better than this one so do not concentrate on the latter. They assert that this ideology resulted in people accepting and enduring less than positive, even hellish conditions and situations with the belief that there is something infintely better instead of improving their present circumstances and conditions. They maintain that the concept of Heaven has created a schizophrenic disconnect in the human mindset, psyche, and consciousness, causing people to avoid and dismiss the conditions of this world in favor of a more spiritual world.
There are some who staunchly proclaim that Heaven is a juvenile and unrealistic concept which is the province in the more infantile inclined person. They indicate that such people use Heaven as an escape mechanism from a world that the latter believe is harsh and unrelenting. They further assert that to such people, Heaven is the perfect world where everything and everyone is fine and harmonious. To them, such people do not have the mechanism to interface with this world which they deem to be quite problematic so rather than to face their problems, they escape into a utopic world called Heaven.
Others find the idea of spending an eternity in Heaven to be unsettling. They maintain that Heaven as it is presented is a sterile, bland world. To them, to spend an eternity in Heaven is equivalent to most people spending an eternity in Hell. They see Heaven as an anticlimactic conclusion to their lives.
A few people dismiss the idea of Heaven entirely. They assert that there is no Heaven at all. To believe that is childishness at its zenith. In addition to that, such a concept has no basis in logic. They maintain that the physical/temporal world is all there is and after one dies, all aspects of existence is finished. They explain that people insist on believing in the concept of Heaven because they want to live forever, refusing to believe that death is indeed the ultimate end. They add that the belief in Heaven persist because people have a fear of death and refusing to believe that THIS life is IT.
Most people want to go to Heaven because it is believed to be place of eternal happiness and peace. It is also a place where one is united with God or a benevolent deity. There are others who see Heaven as a reward for an arduous, if difficult, life. Heaven is also seen by many to be a viable alternative to Hell, a place of utter and abject negativity.
However, the idea and concept of Heaven has its distractors. There are those who insist that Heaven is a mythological concept which is out of place in this postmodern world. They also maintain that Heaven was used as psychological reinforcement to give hope and strength to people. They believe that the effort devoted to believing in a mythological Heaven would be better utilized to create a better environment on earth. Others see Heaven as the ultimate con job, brainwashing people to believe in things which are detrimental to their human development and progress. Still some view Heaven as an escape mechanism to avoid facing problems in the real world. Heaven is really what the individual believe it is.
© 2014 Grace Marguerite Williams