Heaven isn’t too far away

the difference between heaven and hell
Why is it that so many people feel the need to believe in a Heaven and a Hell? We can employ Richard Dawkins’ theory for why people adopt religious views. He feels a person adopts the religion they do and subsequent beliefs that go along with it because they are inundated with religious rhetoric when they are little and have no choice but to believe what they have been told. I somewhat agree with his explanation of this enigma, but I don’t wholeheartedly believe it to be the case. I was one of those children indoctrinated with Christianity and I don’t have any religious ties as an adult. No, I think the answer is much simpler than Dawkins’ or any other explanation that others have offered up. I think it is as simple as one word, hope. People have hope that there is some method to the madness around them. That there is some inexplicable higher purpose to all the death, destruction, chaos, disease, malady, and hatred that seems to fill up the hearts of man and define our lives. People hold on to the idea that there is a utopia that occurs after we depart this Earth. A Heaven. And in order to get there they must live in a pious, humble manner continuing to tow the line of the status quo. And conversely, the people who are evil in this world will not be allowed to enter Heaven and will be punished in the afterlife in Hell. Unfortunately, everyone is in for a rude awakening when they die, because this is it. This is what we are playing for, right here in front of us. And those of you who have been saving up your cosmic karma for some big payout at the end are going to find out that you were duped. There is no bright light at the end of a tunnel, but rather a slow and quiet departure as the curtains are drawn and the screen fades to black.
The truth is that Heaven and Hell do exist. They absolutely and unequivocally are real. But they do not exist as they have been described to us in churches, in stories, and in books. They are not some abstract parallel worlds that exist concurrently with ours separated by some thin veneer right below and above us governed by God and the Devil. That is just not the case at all. They exist all around us in our everyday lives. They exist in the cab driver who can’t seem to find the right street while the meter continues to run, or our dead end jobs that we loathe, or a loveless marriage that we are trapped in, or the guy who gives you 25 cents when you are short a quarter in line, or someone who holds the door open for you when your hands are full. It happens all around us, proof of its existence. But the Heaven and Hell people are searching for isn’t a place we will reach upon our death, it is here in our present, in our day to day lives. This is our reality. People hold onto the idea of another place to make the doldrums of their mundane existence tolerable. And to comfort us we need to feel that people will be rewarded when they do what is “right” and punished when they do something “wrong.” But that is not the case. It makes me sad that people think that others will “get what’s coming to them.” No they won’t. The people of the world must stop this way of thinking. We must take ownership of our lives. We must take responsibility for what happens in our own lives. Be cognisant of how we treat others, take note of how we want to be treated, and worry more about judging our own actions rather than being judged by a higher power. Allow that higher power to be ourselves.

The Devil and God are real, they exist inside of each of us. We know when we do something bad just like we know when we do something good. You can feel it inside of you. But the difference is that I am not going to be judged for it one day, I am judging and choosing it now. No one made me do it. Circumstance or situation didn’t make me do it. Choices I have made in the past have led me to the present and future situations and decisions. And then how I respond is based on years of social and formal education and the influence of outside stimuli that culminate into choices that dictate my actions. I am not the puppet of the Devil or of God. I make my own choices. Some are good ones and some are bad. But they are my choices. Everyone is capable of great evil or of tremendous good. Of being the Devil or of being God as they have been described to us. But we hold the strings. We make the choices. We decide if we are going to be the hero or the villain. The factors in our lives determine how we turn out. Mental capacity, genetic abnormalities, physical environment, parenting, schooling, and exposure to drugs and alcohol all have extreme effects on who we are and the decisions we make. Not the preordained whims of some cosmic beings playing a game of chess for all of humanity using us as the pieces. What kind of a God would that be?

And let’s say the two of those deities were real. If the Devil had an army that he sends to Earth to do his bidding, then wouldn’t he reward them when they returned to hell? Hell would be like Vegas for the Devil’s henchman and sinners. Also if Hell was meant as a punishment by God for ill will and wrong doings, that would mean that God employs the Devil to do his bidding. And what of the priests and people of the cloth that have committed atrocities that the “church” has forgiven them for? Are they too going to heaven? No, I think that they would wind up in hell as well. But then wouldn’t the Devil reward them for forsaking God? It gets really convoluted. Also, the idea that the two places, Heaven and Hell, are the only choices seems a little harsh. Do I really think a thief and a murderer deserve the same eternity? Or someone who cheated on their wife and someone who worshiped a false deity deserve to same punishment of pain and suffering at the point of Lucifer’s pitchfork? And does that mean the 5 billion people in this world who are not catholic are going to Hell just because they have not accepted Jesus Christ as their savior? No wonder the world hates us, we have told everyone they are going to Hell.

The idea of a Heaven and who will get in has only served to separate and alienate people from one another creating ironically a Hell on Earth. Separation, racism, hatred, intolerance are all side effects of religion. Religion is the yoke that leaders have placed around our necks in order to control our actions and keep them firmly in place at the top. Heaven has been the carrot they use to keep us motivated. It is time to remove this veil of illusion and determine for ourselves our own happiness. Look to what we hold dear here on Earth as pieces to creating the puzzle of heaven. Love your wife or husband, care for your children, respect your parents, be considerate to those around you, and value the time you spend with the people you love. Those are the secrets to finding and being accepted into “Heaven.” Don’t wait until the end of your life to find your paradise, for it will be too late. Open your eyes and look around and you will see that Earth is its own utopia filled with natural wonders and treasures created by the people who have come before us. It is also filled with people who are too blind to see it. Abra sus ojos.

3 monks praying


About thedailyheard

Just a guy with an opinion and some time on my hands trying to find out where the sidewalk really does end.

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