How often do you wonder about it? Are you planning ahead for the trip?
Maybe we will cross a Rainbow bridge, where we are greeted by all of our lost and beloved pets. They were always the first to greet us in this life, and the best at doing it, so why not? And we will live there forever with everyone we’ve loved … In the popular image of Heaven, not much is mentioned about God. But isn’t He supposed to be the point?
In today’s Writer’s Almanac, there’s a nice little poem called Heaven, which says that we will live in the past there – that Heaven is the past – and we’ll live there with
“Everyone we ever loved,
and lost, and must remember.”
Sweet. Everybody gathers up and goes back in time, and entry is automatic, based on love, loss and memory. But it doesn’t make much sense, from a theological perspective. What about, you know, Judgment? God will not be mocked.
And if we gather up at a point in time and go back in time, what about everybody who lives on, remembering and missing us? Do they show up on a later bus?
I imagine we are like Billy Pilgrim, stuck in time now but not stuck in time always. So it goes. And heaven exists outside – beyond – the stream of time. It’s not past, present or future, it’s forever.
What do you think?
Interesting. I'm a generation closer than you are to the end of life, and yet I don't think about "heaven" and such at all. Indeed, the time I've spent devoted to the issue while reading your post and composing this comment (perhaps twelve minutes by the time I finish typing and proofreading it) will be the most I've pondered the question during the past year. I wonder often about the "meaning of life" (for that matter, whether life has "meaning"), but in that deliberation the concept of a heaven doesn't intrude. For me, any meaning-of-life reflection relates to matters temporal, corporeal: to Earthly actions, not heavenly concepts. Indeed, I find such notions boring because I realize at the outset there is no answer to the question and hence, for me, no relevance of it to life-on-Earth.