The Promised Land

The payoff of bogus faith is always found…

in some stupendous supernatural event…

in some distant time and indescribable place…

a grand reward reserved only for “the faithful”.

Of course, “the faithful” cannot even define such a place except in the most childish terms.

What are you gonna do there, my friends?

Play more golf?

Sip piña coladas on the beach all day?

Perhaps you’d enjoy singing your favorite hymns a trillion times in perfect tune?

Perhaps never-ending self-flagellation is your thing?

Perhaps you’re the sort who’d enjoy watching all those nasty infidels and apostates burn in hell?

Perhaps your real reward is to enjoy all those things you were told were mortal sins on earth?

Who knows?

Authentic faith knows that “the promise” is not the false hope in some rapturous future.

Authentic faith knows that “the promise” is not a place where character and virtue are no longer required.

Authentic faith knows that “the promise land” is to be created in this life… in the compassion and courage to heal, create, and love in the here and now… a here and now filled with anguish and deep responsibility towards ourselves and each other.

Existentialism Humanism Religion

Frank J Peter View All →

A uniquely burdened and blessed citizen of the world thinking and acting out loud!

9 Comments Leave a comment

  1. I pulled this off Quora…’s a bit long

    Millions of Years
    If life were perfectly happy and happy became routine then happiness would no longer exist. Eternity in heaven unable to interact with our world in any way that can be observed or measured would become a frightening experience.

    Let’s imagine Heaven is like a theme park for the mind. It is like an
    experience machine of the grandest scale and capabilities possible. Once in Heaven you can do anything you can imagine and experience anything you want but there is one rule it must always be a happy experience. There can be no sadness and no pain in this experience. You can travel through time or space and visit virtual worlds that you could imagine but there can only be happy experiences there is no pain and no sadness in heaven.

    My Abridged Happy Heaven Diary

    1,000 years. Think about eternity for a moment. It is a really long time. Would you not have experienced every game and activity you ever wanted to do in just a 1000 years?

    1 million years. Go farther.  Could you visit every place on earth in this virtual heaven? You could see every corner from every angle. But only the perfect days. Not the rainy miserable ones or the gloomy ones. You have longer to explore it than mankind ever had.

    1 billion years. Go farther. Could you not experience what it is like to live in every era of time in every part of the world? But only the perfect days. Not the rainy miserable ones or the gloomy ones, or the scary terrible parts of history that might make you sad.

    1 trillion years. So what is left to do in 1 trillion years? That is 1 thousand times as long as experiencing every place and every time period. Now you revisit history year by year. Wouldn’t it all start to run together?

    1 Quadrillion years. You’ve made it. By now heaven is agony. You have been there for 1,000,000,000,000,000 years. There is no experience you have not yet had. There is no place in the entire universe you have not explored. Everything is beginning to seem the same. One planet begins to look like another just as one airport begins to look like another after flying too often.

    1 Quintillion years. It won’t end. Happiness all the time. Not even through 1 percent of eternity. You can’t even remember what it was like to have to walk home sad on a rainy day. But you would give anything to experience it. You would give anything to experience pain again. If for no other reason it would be different than the mind numbingness of perfect food, perfect sex and perfect skies every day for 1,000,000,000,000,000,000 years.

    1 sextillion years. This will continue on for eternity.  There is no end. Please let me die again. Let it all end. Please! Eternity is really really long…..

    1 septillion years…. Arrgh Ahhhhh! Gaaahhrggg! AHHHH! So happy! So terrifically happy. Ahhhrg. Can’t stop being Ghaaa… Help!

    1 Octillion years…

    Liked by 1 person

    • The only way it would work is if there were no restrictions on what kinds of experience you could choose — not even that they had to be happy ones. I read a science-fiction story once about a man who led a practically utopian life, but used virtual reality to create an alternate world of pain and misery to which he retreated every so often when he started to get bored. He was smart enough to realize it would make his perfect reality more enjoyable by contrast.

      Heaven sounds incredibly boring, in part, because it’s supposedly perfect and can never change. Living indefinitely on Earth would be a very different matter because culture and technology keep advancing, knowledge keeps expanding, new art keeps being created, etc.

      Who knows, maybe the real reward is to finally get to enjoy all those things you were told were mortal sins on earth?

      Now that has possibilities. Too bad there’s no basis for it in any religion I know of.

      Liked by 1 person

      • All of any conceivable options for pleasure or pain would ultimately get very boring. Heaven would literally turn into hell. That’s why I don’t long for an eternal life. Not that I believe in it anyway..I don’t.

        But in fantasizing and being a very curious person, I like to come back every hundred years or so for about a month, just to see all the changes, new technology, new species, eventually no humans, life on other planets etc. and then call it quits for good before the universe died away in heat death or cold death, whichever it is.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. The irony for me is the fact that all the promises of things we’ll have, I already have the moment I left faith. Peace, love, and tranquility are the antithesis of a system that defers responsibility to another entity at another time. Personal responsibility is the key to the self mastery they preach, and belong allowed to wallow in deprecation and delayed achievement, essentially giving up the fight to make the world right, is not a mortal blessing, but a stunting curse.

    Liked by 1 person

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