Thursday, September 12, 2013

Afterlife: Heaven, Hell, Reincarnation and the Cease of Existence

source: Facebook Post
This post is the reason why I started asking about the forgiveness and perfection of the Christian God.  If God is forgiving, why would He condemn all sinners to Hell? They say the answer is in the Bible but I’m still looking for it.  Suppose I found an answer, how can I be sure that it is true?  Christian beliefs are deeply rooted in the Bible and they say that questioning it is like questioning the history.  What’s wrong with questioning history? 

It’s possible that the Bible is not the ultimate book of moral.  Take the Christian crusades as an example.  They kill in the name of God.  What kind of excuse is that? Though some says that most of these crusaders are not Christian; it’s still questionable.  That’s one point for questioning history.  Let’s have an example closer to my home, Spaniards’ invading the Philippines.  As they force Christianity here, God knows what they did to the natives.  That’s at least 300 years of history.

Another answer I got: just accept Jesus Christ with all your heart.  It doesn’t make any sense.  Didn’t that mean God is not forgiving? Unless I do what He wants, I won’t be forgiven?

Others insisted that God is forgiving.  They also said that we’re already forgiven.  All we need to do is accept Jesus and repent our sins.  That contradicts the post I linked above.  It seems that we, the sinners, are fated to be in Hell but God is giving us a chance to change that.  This thought and together with Christ’s second coming: I think it’s not about salvation.  I think it’s just an invitation to their kingdom.  This means that by accepting their invitation, sinners worse than me; a murderer for example, still has a chance to enter in Heaven.  Therefore, it’s okay to kill someone; just remember to accept Jesus and repent your sins later.  So much for morality.  If this is not the case, then God is not forgiving.

Suppose I don’t choose to accept their invitation and followed other teachings, why would they punish me? Doesn’t that make them selfish and bitter? Is being selfish and bitter a doing of a perfect being? I don’t think so.  Or maybe I’m wrong.  Maybe being selfish and bitter makes one a perfect being.  You decide.

Now that I chose not to enter their kingdom, why would they say that Hell is a place of grief and torment?  Is it a marketing strategy to gain a lot of followers? Maybe it is and it’s very effective. 

Another reason why following other teachings is not a problem: if monotheists are right, it doesn’t matter which teachings I follow because they should all lead me to Him.  If, on the other hand, polytheists are right, any religion should lead me to at least one of the Gods.  Therefore, turning down Jesus and His Father’s invitation doesn’t necessarily leads me to Hell.  It could just give me a chance to walk another path towards Him or a chance to enter another Kingdom.

Suppose they’re right about the sole path towards God and aside from His kingdom, there’s no other place for me to go but Hell, why should I believe that it’s such a bad place?  Couldn’t it be just a place that theists hate but I love? A room full of bloody video games for example.  Why should I hate it if it seems that I am created to be in it?

If Hell is really a nasty place per se, I can think of three options: (1) accept my fate and be punished for eternity; (2) try reconsidering God’s offer: if He’s forgiving, it should never be too late; or (3) fight my way out of Hell.  The third one seems fun.  Look, I’ll be spending an eternity there so why not try fighting my way out or why not challenge it’s king? I’m already dead, what’s the worst that could happen? Die again? It doesn’t matter.  I guess I’ll just have to try again.  While I’m at it, why not try something new? Being comfortable with fire for example.  I can master a lot of things.  I haven’t got a deadline!

There’s a problem though.  They say that we can’t have both immortality and free will.  I don’t know why that’s the case but knowing the story of Lucifer, being a rebellious angel, I still have my hopes up. 

Back to my plan in Hell, doesn’t it sound like the theory of reincarnation? Trying to break my way out of Hell or these worldly illusions in order to reach Nirvana or Heaven?

Here’s another possibility: what if afterlife doesn’t exist? What if after death, we just cease to exist? And all that leads us to these questions: What is the purpose of life? Why should we be good? What is good in the first place?



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