Is there a place called Heaven after death?

OBE's, NDE's, lucid dreams, and the like...

Re: Is there a place called Heaven after death?

Postby HowToKnowGod » Sat Mar 28, 2009 12:35 pm

Tolle's main teaching about what happens after death is that it doesn't matter because it's in the future and the future is only an illusion. He has spoken and written about reincarnation a little, but it's a very small portion of his work. He mentioned that animals probably reincarnate. He's said that it doesn't matter for humans, that we may be given the chance to reincarnate, or probably will reincarnate if we're not present, but that it ultimately doesn't matter.

Byron Katie has stated that we're already in heaven but don't know it. I'm pretty sure E.T. would agree. A lot of other spiritual teachers say so too.

Christianity is sort of warped in that sense. I was brought up a Christian, and I found it perplexing that basically I have to wait until I die before I get to go to heaven. To be honest, I probably still subconsciously believe that and am somewhat looking forward to death. Sometimes I've thought about suicide simply for the chance to actually find out what happens. Like why should we wait? Is it simply out of fear that if we do commit suicide, God will banish us to hell, or otherwise keep us from heaven? That doesn't sound like a nice viewpoint, yet I'm sure it keeps thousands of people from actually going through with the act.

Even E.T. talks about death being a portal. I can't lie. I am honestly looking forward to dying. I'm very curious. However, at the same time, I have no intentions of killing myself (at least for now).

I can see intellectually what E.T. is saying though. It really doesn't matter what happens, because what happens is not our reality. Our reality is that we're the observing presence behind WHATEVER happens. One of those things that "happens" will be our death. So even if we find ourselves entering some sort of heavenly realm, that's still not who we are. We're still the observing presence.

Are you afraid that heaven doesn't exist, that being the observing presence only is sort of a rip-off?
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Re: Is there a place called Heaven after death?

Postby Webwanderer » Sat Mar 28, 2009 5:29 pm

HowToKnowGod, while you're pondering the nature of life after death, you may also wish to consider life before birth. If this physical life is a temporary incarnation from some greater realm of being, what is its purpose? And as much trouble as our present experience may seem to be, would an early intentional exit waste an opportunity in which we endure a childhood and the experience of unique conditions to gain.

Investigation of life beyond this physical expression may well be beneficial in making the best use of our "time" here. But if all we want to do is run from our pain to some perceived sancutaury, we may "live" to regret it. Not because one may face some divine retribution, but because of squandering valuable opportunities to grow.

I hardly think hell and eternal damation would be in the plans from a loving creator who manifests beings out of his/her/its own essential nature. That would be condemning aspects of itself to suffering. It's more likely any hell we may experience is the realization of our own wasted opportunities, and any condemnation that may result is self imposed.

Consider life as a gift regardless of appearances, and approach the challenges you face as a labor of spiritual alchemy. Can we see the truth beyond appearances? The words of Tolle and others point the way to presence-awareness and clarity that makes that seeing possible.

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Re: Is there a place called Heaven after death?

Postby RCharles » Mon Mar 30, 2009 6:17 am

Thanks so much, WebWanderer, for the reference to Mellen's website. I found his story very touching and reassuring. It left me amazed and awestruck, which I suppose is a normal reaction to an encounter with God.

Charles
"They are all...perfect..." --Ken Watanabe, dying scene in the movie The Last Samurai
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Re: Is there a place called Heaven after death?

Postby beYOND4m » Tue Mar 31, 2009 1:21 am

RCharles wrote: Reincarnation or eternal presence with God? Or is there a way that they are the same thing?


I'm guessing... both.

There are numerous articles about reincarnation being required, up until the soul has completed its mission. Eternal presence with God? Well, aren't most of us working on that through Tolle's pointers right now? I have no proof of the former. I get glimpses of the latter, and hope to someday, in this life, to be able to have the ability to remember what we already have - that eternal presence. The answer to the next question would maybe be easier to answer - that the reincarnation and eternal presence ARE the same thing.

:)
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Re: Is there a place called Heaven after death?

Postby RCharles » Thu Apr 02, 2009 6:27 am

The Bible says (paraphrasing) that it is appointed to a person to die once, and then comes the judgement. When I was more fundamental in my beliefs, I thought that ruled out reincarnation.

Now I can easily see how that could mean that it is appointed for THIS body to die once, and for the life of THIS body then to be judged, but that does not exclude the possibility that the spirit could then be sent into a new life, or the spirit could remain with God forever. It's up to God's judgement.

That's still one death and one judgement per person (if you define a person as THIS body/ego/personality), but multiple deaths and judgements per spirit.

That all sounds way too literal, but I do find it interesting that the Bible does not actually contradict reincarnation after all.

Charles
"They are all...perfect..." --Ken Watanabe, dying scene in the movie The Last Samurai
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Re: Is there a place called Heaven after death?

Postby Webwanderer » Fri Apr 03, 2009 1:29 am

It also seems wise not to default to the Bible as "The" source of truth. It's a book of Jewish and Christian history, and a source of some useful pointers. Sometimes we try to make sense out of things someone said in history, that are better seen directly.

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Re: Is there a place called Heaven after death?

Postby gdvant » Sun Apr 05, 2009 1:58 am

Is there a place called Heaven before death? How might they be different? How might they be the same?
Andy


I like ET's pointing to how the egoic mind is disturbed by the fact of the impermanance of all things but our unconditioned aspect finds a deep peace in the fact of impermanance. I find this is so. Awareness of impermanance, like relinquishment of the future, is a portal to the dimension of stillness (aka the kingdom of heaven) which is untouched by what is of thought and time.
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