If the title was of any interest to you, I strongly advise you to read Chuck Palahniuk’s short story called, “Obsolete”. Here is a link to it:
Or if you dont feel like reading, here is a youtube fan made short movie about it(although the written story is 10x better):
And if you choose to do neither, here is a breif synopsis: A manned space ship discovers life on Venus. For reasons unknown to them, command programs their ship to crash on the planet. But no one dies, instead they are reborn as themselves on the planet. It is then deemed that what they have actually discovered, is heaven. After the truth about life and Venus is made public, the planet Earth becomes a mad and unrecognizable place filled with anarchy and violence. This horrible place makes up the setting of “Obsolete.” It is discovered that the only way all of humanity could live on Venus forever is for humans to become extinct; “if one breeding couple was left behind, the birth of a child could call a back a soul… the whole process could start up again”. This realization is what turns earth into a place filled not only with suicides, but mass murders. Entire countries determine that Earth is no longer the place they want to be, and one by one each country orders mass extermination by any means unnecessary.
The story takes the question head on, “If we discovered a heaven, would we really want to live life on earth anymore?” While its uncertain how many would answer, Chuck holds the take that humans, for the most part, are selfish and greedy. And having a heaven would make our lives here on earth absolutely worthless.
The question I pose to you: Why do so many people who hold religious beliefs want proof of God, or proof of heaven? How would that help in anyway? Wouldnt the result, be similar to that of this story? This is one of my favorite stories ever written, I want to discuss it at length with you fine folks.
hmm…I wouldn’t personally see this way of life unfolding as true, as far as humanity’s response to the proof of heaven’s existence. the resulting anarchy and destruction makes little sense to me, perhaps due to the fact that I grew up “christian-adjacent” so one doesn’t simply walk into paradise (much like Mordor…sorry, had to do it) the way I see the afterlife is that we don’t really go to heaven for simply doing our best and doing right by our fellow human, but a certain level of spiritual maturity needs to be achieved first, so in that sense, I see our waking lives on earth as a “spiritual puberty” of sorts.
this, to me at least makes the idea of heaven/nirvana/valhalla, whatever you wanna call it, worth that much more appreciation. so the premise of us killing ourselves to extinction seems simultaneously the most counter-intuitive and counter-productive act we could do, as all of those souls will just wander about with no bodies to inhabit, therefor making their quest toward that “eternal reward” stagnate…it’s terribly ironic,really
Such a complex civilization that exists without destitution would mend our consciousnesses in such a profound, divine and unexplainable way that our perspective on co-existence would drastically shift to a vivid possibility instead of a hazy impossible one. Humankind’s functioning would be rendered in a simplistic impulse of love and act only on the impulse of generosity.
I think that we have found heaven, but some of us choose to ignore it. Every situation and every place where we currently are is heaven. We just can’t see it because we focus on all of the negatives. I don’t think that the traditional belief of heaven can exist because of one main reason. If we existed somewhere perfect for eternity where nothing ever went wrong, we wouldn’t be able to comprehend the goodness because there would be nothing bad happening to compare it to. I believe we have to make our own heaven wherever we happen to be if we ever want to experience it.
i think if we discovered heaven there could be possible wars to gain control of it, and once someone did have control, spots to live there would be sold or auctioned off. i think heaven would become corrupt because society always has to ruin everything good and natural.
If I found out Heaven was real, I wouldn’t feel life on earth is a waste. Why can’t we enjoy both life on earth and the next life as well (assuming there is one)? This life is not nothing, therefore I’d want to do my best here, all the while feeling reassured that I won’t simply cease to exist when it’s all over. One of my biggest beefs with the system of work is that it forces you to use your time doing things you don’t necessarily enjoy so that you can keep existing to keep doing them, all the while you are getting closer and closer to the end of your seemingly one existence and if you didn’t get to enjoy it too bad – but if Heaven were real, I’d feel less doom-and-gloomy. It would be like going to the next level in a video game. I would feel like it would be experiencing a form of evolution on a personal level.
Also, does the existence of Heaven necessitate the existence of Hell, or any God or gods, goddesses, or miscellaneous spiritual beings?
Agree with @theskafish
Life on earth wouldn’t be absolutely worthless.And why will people start killing each other? And does this heaven require you to do good deeds like the traditional idea of heaven? Maybe the pilots were good people? I would just carry on,do good deeds and wait for my place in heaven.
@butidonteven, To say that heaven, an almighty illimitable utopia could be conquered and control by a pragmatic human society is a nonsensical notion. Human perception is only able to think in linear patterns (point A to point B, beginning and end etc.). However the ruler of a divine utopia has an eternal knowledge capable of deviating from these utilitarian thought processes. This being said, his wisdom is light years ahead of our every day thinking, so to say that heaven can be conquered is almost a paradoxical statement.
P.S. I personally do not mean any disrespect or want to come across as ill-mannered, I would just like to tell you why I think that notion is a tad flawed.
If we found heaven on venus… I’de dare say the church was wrong, there’s no reason to believe that the discovery of a heaven verifies the existence of hell. A HUGE problem with this scenario is the idea that births on earth would require souls to return to earth, if that were the case how do we account for the massive population growth that we’ve experienced? I would assume, hypothetically speaking, that souls that choose to return would be able to do so, and outside of that new souls would be created. If you’ve watched waking life this argument is not unfamiliar.
This idea is not new… There were books on the matter prior to chucks birth. A man named Ernest L. Norman, a proclaimed psychic and healer, had written a book about a higher dimensional society on venus in 1956. Supposedly there is civilization on venus, they are just vibrating at a rate outside of our current ability to perceive. I’m not an advocate for them but there is a foundation built around this mans life and teachings, The Unarius Academy of science, they still do past life regressions and I believe healing. Interesting shit but out of this world by most standards, not that that means much.
The book is The voice of Venus..http://www.amazon.com/Voice-Venus-Pulse-Creation-Series/dp/0932642004/ref=la_B00288N2T8_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1346268431&sr=1-1
Here’s there web page for those interested…http://www.unarius.org/
For some of you, it’ll be a good laugh at least
For me, when I see you say “heaven”, I don’t think of it in a religious sense, just in a more of a plane of enlightenment kinda way. Does that make sense? I also question, if we do discover a higher plane of enlightenment, will we be happy with it?
Part of me thinks that if we all found this heaven together, we would simply grow bored of it after a while, meanwhile all these miraculous things are happening all around us. We just see it so much now that we’re bored of it.
Maybe we are already in heaven, and if we are, is there another higher existence above?
@majesticbenevolence, we are still talking about a completely fictitious place right? Because when you make statements like, “ruler of a divine utopia has an eternal knowledge” and “his wisdom is light years ahead of our every day thinking”, it makes it sound like you are talking about undeniable facts. Its ok and encouraged to debate other peoples stance on the matter, but dont use words like “has” and “is”, instead say, “I think that…” or, “I could argue your point on…”. Since we are talking about an imaginary place, his argument has a 50% chance of being right, and yours has a 50% chance as well.
I love that story, just becuase in my mind that paradise doesn’t exist in the story, and the government is just doing a global cleansing. I bet celebritys would jump off roofs if they were sure they’d go to heaven.
While my opinion on the matter of a heavens existence is in complete agreement with what @jemmapatterson said, for the sake of the argument I’d like to take a more positive route than that of warring or attempting to conquer heaven. Besides the fact that even if we did try that I doubt it would be possible because everything has a natural order (Even the end of Palahniuk’s scary and bleak take on such a hypothetical leaves us with an uncanny form of hope at the end if one looks at it the right way), I would like to think that if the stories premise on the nature of the purposes of both the Earth and then Heaven are true that it would only drive mankind to work better and more harmoniously towards this ultimately awesome end goal. I think people would find more purpose in their lives and with this newfound meaning that everyone seems to already be searching for amongst the chaotic life we already lead in this current state, everyone would strive to better their lives in order to attain transcendence into this other superior realm. Instead of breaking the natural order which, like I already mentioned, even the most unsympathetic accounts of our nature argue against it being possible, I believe we would begin to work in synch with it in order to reach paradise. Great story @yoinkie.
@yoinkie, I understand your point however, to our common human knowledge heaven would consist of those things (ruler, divine utopia etc.). So while I acknowledge that the question proposed is one centered on a fictitious area, dimension, whatever the case may be, I give my answer based on a knowledge of perennial philosophy. So I retract none of my prior statements due to the simple fact of basic human knowledge of heaven and the divine.
P.S. the question asks about “heaven” which can be generally defined in every religion hense my allusive comments. i would hope now you will be able to better understand the subjects in my statement. To me and most human beings heaven would consist of those things.
Nobody told me i was supposed to be looking for Heaven….holy crap….they lost it?!….fan-freakin tastic…Story of my life (abnd afterlife too, apparently) My eternal happines is waiting in a dusty lost n found box in the basement of a bus company somewhere …….Has anyone searched Hell..the devil loves pranks….what about the stairway to heaven?….still there?…the highway to Hell is …Some say its paved with good intentions…NOT…well my grannie once told me “Everyone wants to go to Heaven, but nobody wants to go today.”…..cant I ever catch a break?….total bummer, man….
I think the only heaven we could discover is to rediscover that heaven is right here and now on earth with everything that comes with it and all the little or big misteries that it offers. So let’s smile, breath and try not to screw it up :)
If people use violence and murder to get to heaven, then why wouldn’t there be violence and murder in heaven as well? Heaven is defined as a place for those with peace in their body and soul.
If you read the bible clocely, you’ll discover that “heaven” is just an intermezzo, and that the real goal is the “new earth” – a reinkarnation of the planet. Humans are built and supposed to be a part of this eco-system called earth, not to sit on a cloud or on Venus.