This question came to me while reading an article on the always fun debate concerning God’s many capabilities such as creating a rock he can’t lift, but that assumes limitations, and how can God have limitations if he is all knowing and all powerful and on and on…
All of that I’ve heard before. I think of it as theological catnip: no actual definitive answer but many wasted hours arguing.
Which brings us to this.
In order to wrap our heads around the title question, we must first ascertain what heaven is. Google, naturally, is ready, willing, and able to assist. The biblical references tells us that heaven is a city, new Jerusalem, with a crystal like river and roads paved with gold. It will be lit with the light of God.
Sounds pretty good if you’re into that kind of thing. If mid-century modern is your preference, it might not sound so good.
This is also predominantly Protestant as it doesn’t assume levels to be climbed on the way to heaven. Think Dante.
For the sake of brevity, we’ll put aside how one qualifies for entry into heaven as first we must ask ourselves is this for me. Blasphemous? That, I would think, depends on how you approach such matters, but in light of our current obsession with lifestyle choices and individual preferences, it’s important to research such things.
Assuming that there is a heaven and that it is a real place with houses and food and people, free from want, disease, and suffering, and filled with intelligent like-minded souls, our question becomes more relevant. What will we be doing and with whom? Ancestors? Descendants? If married multiple times, which spouse? And what will we actually do?
I ask because eternity is a long time, mind-bogglingly so.
As for spouses, apparently we mend fences with everyone with whom we had a beef, assuming they’re even there, and are at peace with all those we encounter. I have questions about whether that would negate those things about us that make us unique from one another, but that takes us down a different road.
Maybe we don’t do anything! Maybe we’re just blissed out for eternity, which might not be a bad thing since materially, we’ll have no wants or needs. But won’t even being blissed out get boring after a time?
Of course the assumption is that there isn’t time as we conceive of it; it is, after all, an Earthly construct. But, there is also the belief that heaven is in fact what the Earth was as Eden and that is what we will be returning to, assuming you return. That poses its own host of questions given how many people have passed this mortal coil and shall pass and is there enough room for everyone? I guess if we’re blissed out, it won’t matter.
Yet this doesn’t begin to describe the many variants of heaven just through the strains of Christianity.
Still, the question lingers: with the passage of enough time, will we become bored? Some say no. Others worry that you can only play so much baseball with Ted Williams and Babe Ruth before it get tedious. There is also the matter of good and perfection that are human constructs, and as such would not translate into a heavenly condition. Meaning the idea of heaven is meaningless due to the human condition of imperfection.
Having now wasted some of your precious time, it might be judicious to point out that this is all idle thinking, much like being bored.
On the plus side, it’s less stressful that arguing about politics.
©2019 David William Pearce