The unnecessary world

Let us suppose there is free will in Heaven; that is, those there can do what they will. One supposes they are such a well-behaved lot this does not include any murderous mayhem. If one does not suppose free will in Heaven, it doesn’t look much like a Heaven anymore, I guess; our literature and arts seem pretty universally hold that not doing what you wanna is a horrible state of being.

Now, whatever spirit appears in Heaven — a spirit, a soul, use whatever word most pleases you — has memories, and those memories code for tendencies: that is, those that appear in Heaven are people.

I haven’t heard a Christian say or deny that there will be births in Heaven; but if there are no “Heavenborn” babies, then Heaven will soon be largely a place with no babies and no children, which seems a bit sterile to me, though logical: people enter Heaven, and after a few decades any entrant has had enough time to grow up; and no-one ever leaves. (Well, unless the Lucifer road is still open.)

An interesting question is what kind of adults Heaven will be filled with. Let us first suppose “age” means largely the size and shape of one’s body.

There, both alternatives are spooky. Namely, the arrivals could either grow up, or they could stay as they were when they came in. Then Heaven is either eventually overwhelmingly full of able-bodied adults (or greybeards, depending on the chosen endstate), or then there will be lots of cranky adults in kid bodies, pissed at being eternally two feet under the average height. (“Hello you seemingly ninety-year-old man! I am your great-grandfather despite seeming only thirty!”)

This is supposing “age” means the state of one’s body, though. Heaven could be a lot of energy beings zapping around, or changing their appearances at will. (Depending on one’s God, even changing one’s gender could be frowned on, or no big deal. If there is gender in Heaven, that is! And then there’s the extraordinarily vague question of sex in Heaven. Promise orgies, and there will be converts!)

But even if one has no body, “age” can still mean the extent of what one has seen and felt; but if Heaven is an “all-nice” place, doesn’t that mean that souls won’t age much in Heaven? Hair-raising thrills and dangers braved showing one’s mettle don’t seem much like Heaven, but they’re quite a component of maturity. (Unless under the glare of God there can be adventure camps organized by Lucifer et al.) But if hard times make one mature fast (I won’t say they are necessary for maturity, because I don’t believe that), then there’s a nightmare scenario for you: Heaven overran by the masses of those that died as infants, and who as a result are incredibly immature brats. Sinless… but brats.

Here’s another nightmare scenario: Suppose that all that die young enough get to Heaven. If that is so, then to linger here in the valley of the shadow of death is to risk damnation; babies are pure, or then divine mercy purifies them. As I think it is supposed those babies are not obliterated or merged into some amalgam whole, then they arrive in Heaven much like those that die older do, and they then (hopefully) grow up. (If they don’t grow up physically, tough for them; if they don’t grow up mentally, Heaven is a hall full of retards. Millennia at that pacifier and nothing new! That is not Heaven!)

Now, by these amateur probings it seems reasonable on a theological level that a baby can go to Heaven, and eventually be a “citizen” of that place much the same as anyone else. It seems altogether reasonable to assume, then, that God could create new souls into Heaven out of nothing; after all, a baby isn’t that much removed from such a blank slate. (And what about angels? Did God make what he needed and then cull the imperfect ones along with the guy with horns, or are new angels continuously generated? There are a whole lot more people to guardian-angel around than there used to be, and more folks in Heaven. Indeed, might it not be the case there are a hundred angels or more in Heaven for every human being, waiting for the Big Population Bada Boom? That’s a bit unsettling.)

If Heaven could be populated with beings that have not been anywhere else before, then — in my opinion anyway — immediate spasms of panic should follow if one takes these speculations seriously. Namely, what’s this world of ours then? If God could populate the Heaven with sinless free-willed souls, and if He is good, He has no need to create hordes of us into this crucible, and only accept a portion after much testing. There is no need for this world, or for Hell; God could just wave a hand, and have a Heaven populated with pure and loyal beings.

It seems the likely retort to this would be some loyalty-proving gambit; but it seems foolish and outright wicked of God to create inferior beings (us) instead of more perfect ones (the hypothetical Heavenborn) when such a creation means so much grief (in some theologies, eternal grief) for so many of the created. (For God, too; “Oops! Josef Stalin!”)

(Theological possibility, quite gruesome: if it pleases God to have the deserving come to Heaven, does it also please God to have the unworthy aflame? I with my secular ethics don’t think any suffering is gloat-worthy, but I think others would disagree, Aquinas with his damned balcony and people like that: “that the saints may enjoy their beatitude and the grace of God more abundantly they are permitted to see the punishment of the damned in hell”!)

It gets worse, by the way, if you suppose everyone gets to Heaven. Things get altogether repugnant, as a fact: “I could manifest everyone straight to perfect bliss, but I think I’ll watch them suffer a bit first. That’ll make them appreciate Heaven!”

Then we could assume God isn’t good, or in control… or that this world of ours is actually Hell. Hah! (“I love the smell of theological speculation in the morning!”)

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