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So, Tell Me About Your Heaven...

qweerblue

Registered Member
So, the thread about religions and cults sparked an old interest of mine—asking people who believe in Heaven to describe how they envision it.

I was raised in a Southern Baptist church, and I heard, countless times, about how in Heaven, the streets would be paved in gold, how there would be mansions made of gold with walls emblazoned with fine gems, and, I think, something about people wearing crowns of gold also festooned with gems. Lots and lots of gold and gems in Heaven. And jasper.

I was also taught that there would be no more sorrow, pain, or suffering, that we would be reunited with our loved ones, and that we would all be sexless—neither male nor female. Seems as if I also recall hearing that there would be no sun, no moon, no oceans/seas. All in all, it was described as a place of untold beauty and joy, such that words could never really describe and that mere earth-bound humans could never really fathom.

I don't believe in this idea of Heaven, and I'm not sure if my church, or any church, still teaches it this way. To be honest, I'm not sure what I believe happens when we die. Something between absolute nothingness and some kind of transfer of energy—not necessarily out-and-out reincarnation, but something along the lines of seeing that spark of energy that we all have, and that I think runs through us all like so many connecting filaments, re-emerge as a flower, tree, fish, bird, or, yes, another human. I think every single thing in our universe shares energy, that we all, and everything, are floating together in an ocean of energy, and that there's a constant re-shaping and re-aligning of that energy, just like the way waves move across the ocean's surface. Things are in constant motion in the ocean, they get jostled and uprooted and re-settled, they die and decompose and "come back", so to speak, by feeding other organisms or by being absorbed by the ocean itself.

Anyway.

How I do go on.

So, how about it? Care to share your idea of Heaven? Or, if you don't believe in Heaven, your notion of what happens when we shuffle off this mortal coil?

And I hope I don't need to say this, but people, please—be good to each other. This is not a thread for ridiculing or challenging or demeaning other people and their ideas. Asking respectful questions is ok, but let's keep this a safe space, where no one has to worry that they'll be attacked or mocked for their beliefs.
 
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Wade8813

Registered Member
I was raised in a Southern Baptist church, and I heard, countless times, about how in Heaven, the streets would be paved in gold, how there would be mansions made of gold with walls emblazoned with fine gems, and, I think, something about people wearing crowns of gold also festooned with gems. Lots and lots of gold and gems in Heaven. And jasper.

I was also taught that there would be no more sorrow, pain, or suffering, that we would be reunited with our loved ones, and that we would all be sexless—neither male nor female. Seems as if I also recall hearing that there would be no sun, no moon, no oceans/seas. All in all, it was described as a place of untold beauty and joy, such that words could never really describe and that mere earth-bound humans could never really fathom.

I don't believe in this idea of Heaven, and I'm not sure if my church, or any church, still teaches it this way.
When I believed in heaven, it was (more or less) like this. I'm not sure about the sexless thing, and I seem to remember that there WOULD be oceans/seas. There are plenty of churhces who teach something along those lines.

So, how about it? Care to share your idea of Heaven? Or, if you don't believe in Heaven, your notion of what happens when we shuffle off this mortal coil?
Right now, I don't have any idea of what death holds.

Actually, that's not true. I'd guess that it's either sort of like what you described, or just nothingness.
 

Dabs

Registered Member
I am not a religious person, but when I was a young girl, my Dad made me go to church, it was a Baptist church. His family are still members there to this day.
But, I would like to think there is something like you described, something so perfect, so serene and beautiful, because I know if there is one, that is where my Mother is.
My Mother believed in God and Heaven.
She told me this story, a couple of days after we were told she was terminal....God how I hate that word.
Anyway, she was sitting on the edge of her bed, and it was just her and I.
We hugged and started talking and she told me she had a dream last night.
I said "Oh really Mom, please tell me".
She said that her and I were tied together with a string, at our waists. And we were floating....going way up higher and higher into the skies.
I asked her if we were afraid and she told me no.
I asked her what was below us, she said the city. I asked her what was above us, she told me the skies. And she kept repeating that we were not scared, we were just floating along :)
She was so calm, and very quiet like when she was telling me this. Then she told me that she took a pair of scissors, and she reached out, and she cut the string!
(this sort of shocked me!)
I asked her why she did that, and she shrugged her shoulders, said she didn't know really. So I then asked her where I went, and she replied "You just floated off way over there to the side".
And I asked her where she went, and she said "I went up to the sky" and she pointed upwards as she said that.
I'll never forget that conversation, ever. My Mother believed she was going someplace where there is no pain and no suffering and she wasn't at all afraid. Her only fear was leaving me.
 

qweerblue

Registered Member
When I believed in heaven, it was (more or less) like this. I'm not sure about the sexless thing, and I seem to remember that there WOULD be oceans/seas. There are plenty of churches who teach something along those lines.
Interesting how much variance there is among Christians and ideas about Heaven--I was talking about this with my girlfriend, and she expressed surprise at the notion that loved ones would know one another in heaven--apparently, she was taught that we would not recognize each other from our past lives but would live, instead, in peaceful harmony anew. Or something like that. She also was not taught about people wearing bejeweled crowns, either...

Oh, and I think the sexless thing was an attempt to explain that we would be spirits or angel-like rather than be enclosed in the flesh-and-blood earthly bodies.
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I am not a religious person, but when I was a young girl, my Dad made me go to church, it was a Baptist church. His family are still members there to this day.
But, I would like to think there is something like you described, something so perfect, so serene and beautiful, because I know if there is one, that is where my Mother is.
My Mother believed in God and Heaven.
She told me this story, a couple of days after we were told she was terminal....God how I hate that word.
Anyway, she was sitting on the edge of her bed, and it was just her and I.
We hugged and started talking and she told me she had a dream last night.
I said "Oh really Mom, please tell me".
She said that her and I were tied together with a string, at our waists. And we were floating....going way up higher and higher into the skies.
I asked her if we were afraid and she told me no.
I asked her what was below us, she said the city. I asked her what was above us, she told me the skies. And she kept repeating that we were not scared, we were just floating along :)
She was so calm, and very quiet like when she was telling me this. Then she told me that she took a pair of scissors, and she reached out, and she cut the string!
(this sort of shocked me!)
I asked her why she did that, and she shrugged her shoulders, said she didn't know really. So I then asked her where I went, and she replied "You just floated off way over there to the side".
And I asked her where she went, and she said "I went up to the sky" and she pointed upwards as she said that.
I'll never forget that conversation, ever. My Mother believed she was going someplace where there is no pain and no suffering and she wasn't at all afraid. Her only fear was leaving me.
That's a really beautiful story, Dabs. And you know, if there's something I lament about not believing in Heaven, it's that peaceful feeling that believers have about their death and afterlife. I mean, my Gramma can't wait to die! I can't imagine the solace I would have, moving through this world, if I believed what so many Christians believe about God and Heaven and our lives here on earth and after...

It's not that I'm afraid to die--it's that it's rather annoying not knowing, or at least believing I know, what awaits me (if anything).

Anyway--I was really touched by the story of you and your Mom, and I think it's beautiful imagery, the two of you floating and connected. It would make a really lovely drawing or painting...
 
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Wade8813

Registered Member
Interesting how much variance there is among Christians and ideas about Heaven--I was talking about this with my girlfriend, and she expressed surprise at the notion that loved ones would know one another in heaven--apparently, she was taught that we would not recognize each other from our past lives but would live, instead, in peaceful harmony anew. Or something like that. She also was not taught about people wearing bejeweled crowns, either...

Oh, and I think the sexless thing was an attempt to explain that we would be spirits or angel-like rather than be enclosed in the flesh-and-blood earthly bodies.
Certain things the Bible spells out (but some may be metaphorical?). There are some that are commonly held due to popular media (like sitting on clouds playing harps). There are some that people may be able to infer. There are some that people hope is true, or insist that they wouldn't want to be in heaven if it wasn't true (like pets being in heaven).

There are Bible passages that talk about crowns. Some of them seem like they may be metaphorical, and I'm not sure how fancy any of them are supposed to be (for instance, one translation mentions "wreath" instead in one of the passages, which is the 'victor's crown' they had for the olympics back in those days, but didn't have a lot of bling).

Some Bible verses definitely imply that we'll be able to recognize each other in heaven, but I'm not sure if there's any conclusive passages. I seem to remember two conflicting things - one that we won't have any physical body, or that we'll have a body like Christ's was after He was resurrected. Or maybe we don't have a body during a certain period, then do have one for some other period (possibly we have one when on the "New heaven/new earth" but not in heaven, or during Christ's 1000 year reign, or whatever).
 

Dabs

Registered Member
I


That's a really beautiful story, Dabs. And you know, if there's something I lament about not believing in Heaven, it's that peaceful feeling that believers have about their death and afterlife. I mean, my Gramma can't wait to die! I can't imagine the solace I would have, moving through this world, if I believed what so many Christians believe about God and Heaven and our lives here on earth and after...

It's not that I'm afraid to die--it's that it's rather annoying not knowing, or at least believing I know, what awaits me (if anything).

Anyway--I was really touched by the story of you and your Mom, and I think it's beautiful imagery, the two of you floating and connected. It would make a really lovely drawing or painting...
QB, I am like you, I'm not afraid to die either, but I just don't know what's OUT THERE.
The story about my Mother and I, thank you btw, as I love talking about my Mother- but when I would tell some people that story, they said it sounded as tho Mother was ready, and she knew it was time to 'let go', and they all suggested she was telling me I needed to let go.
Oh how damn hard that is :sigh:
We were/are so very close QB, bestest friends ever! Thanks for telling me it was a beautiful story.
 

Raos

Registered Member
I don't understand the whole streets paved in gold and wearing jewels thing. Jewels and gold are prized for how valuable they are. Yes they are pretty, but look spikes can be just as pretty. It seems weird to me that something like that would have any meaning in heaven.

If there is a heaven then I think each persons heaven would be different. It would be your idea of perfection in every way. What is my idea of perfect is different from someone else's. But I am of the opinion that there is no heaven. I think once you die there is nothing. I hope I am wrong, but my feeling is that heaven was made up by humans who were scared of death and found a way to make it more palatable.
 

qweerblue

Registered Member
I don't understand the whole streets paved in gold and wearing jewels thing. Jewels and gold are prized for how valuable they are. Yes they are pretty, but look spikes can be just as pretty. It seems weird to me that something like that would have any meaning in heaven.

If there is a heaven then I think each persons heaven would be different. It would be your idea of perfection in every way. What is my idea of perfect is different from someone else's. But I am of the opinion that there is no heaven. I think once you die there is nothing. I hope I am wrong, but my feeling is that heaven was made up by humans who were scared of death and found a way to make it more palatable.
Well, to be honest, I think ideas about gold and jewels in heaven do come from Biblical scripture, though, as Wade suggested, there's a good chance that there were metaphorical elements at play in some of these passages. Or, even just a lack of suitable words/language to describe the beauty and light of Heaven, and, so, the authors used common notions of what is beautiful, such as gemstones and precious metals.

I've thought before about each person's vision of Heaven being true for that person, and I think it's, you know, a really nice idea, right? But it's also the most complicated afterlife framework that could exist. I'm not saying that it couldn't be true--it's just that I almost broke my brain thinking about it in the past, thinking about all the implications and things that would have to be true for *that* to be true. Yowza.
------
QB, I am like you, I'm not afraid to die either, but I just don't know what's OUT THERE.
The story about my Mother and I, thank you btw, as I love talking about my Mother- but when I would tell some people that story, they said it sounded as tho Mother was ready, and she knew it was time to 'let go', and they all suggested she was telling me I needed to let go.
Oh how damn hard that is :sigh:
We were/are so very close QB, bestest friends ever! Thanks for telling me it was a beautiful story.
I have been incredibly blessed to have not dealt with much death yet in my life, and I have yet to lose someone who was truly a part of the fabric of my every-day life. I cannot imagine the pain of loss like that, yet I know it will come. My grammas are both in their late 80s, and I live in fear of the phone call that will someday come.

I'm envious of the connection that you and your mother shared--my mom and I are close, but it's incredibly complicated and not always a comfortable relationship. I can see why people would interpret your Mother's dream as a sign that she was trying to encourage you to let go--I'm sorry it hurts so much, Dabs. I hope you can find solace in the fact that she was ready for whatever it was that was coming next for her, and, in part, I'm sure that was because you had loved her so well in this life. She didn't have to be worried about moving on or letting go, because she had her faith to guide her, and because she had faith in you.
 
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Dabs

Registered Member
I'm envious of the connection that you and your mother shared--my mom and I are close, but it's incredibly complicated and not always a comfortable relationship. I can see why people would interpret your Mother's dream as a sign that she was trying to encourage you to let go--I'm sorry it hurts so much, Dabs. I hope you can find solace in the fact that she was ready for whatever it was that was coming next for her, and, in part, I'm sure that was because you had loved her so well in this life. She didn't have to be worried about moving on or letting go, because she had her faith to guide her, and because she had faith in you.
QB, even tho my post right now has not much to do with your OP, I wanted to make this public and not write you in PM.
You just don't know how much it means to me, to have someone tell me what you just did.
Even tho I know beyond a shadow of a doubt my Mother loved me, it always gives me comfort to tell our story and have others, like you, tell me they can tell the love my Mother and I shared :)
I am actually crying right now, your words touched me, I so appreciate what you wrote. My Mother was ready, and she was never afraid and she never once cried, she knew her time was very close, her life was about to end, and she had so much courage!
I feel blessed that she and I had such a close relationship. When I hear stories of others, mostly women, who are not close with their Moms, it breaks my heart a little, because I think they are really missing out on some good stuff. But I know not everyone can have a close family bond.
You are a great person QB and I'm sure your Grammas know how lucky they are to have you in their life. I hope you all have many years together!
 

qweerblue

Registered Member
QB, even tho my post right now has not much to do with your OP, I wanted to make this public and not write you in PM.
You just don't know how much it means to me, to have someone tell me what you just did.
Even tho I know beyond a shadow of a doubt my Mother loved me, it always gives me comfort to tell our story and have others, like you, tell me they can tell the love my Mother and I shared :)
I am actually crying right now, your words touched me, I so appreciate what you wrote. My Mother was ready, and she was never afraid and she never once cried, she knew her time was very close, her life was about to end, and she had so much courage!
I feel blessed that she and I had such a close relationship. When I hear stories of others, mostly women, who are not close with their Moms, it breaks my heart a little, because I think they are really missing out on some good stuff. But I know not everyone can have a close family bond.
You are a great person QB and I'm sure your Grammas know how lucky they are to have you in their life. I hope you all have many years together!
Awww, Dabs, now you got me all weepy. I can't tell you how happy it makes me that I was able to somehow cobble together the right words to say what I felt about your story and your incredibly loving relationship with your mother. She was obviously a truly amazing woman, and I know that you must hurt every day with missing her. My friend Jody lost her mother about five years ago, and they were very, very close, and she tells me that not a day goes by that she doesn't miss her. She also tells me that some people in her life have told her that she needs to move on and that it "shouldn't still hurt." Can you imagine!? I always feel a lot of hurt for Jody, because she has so few people in her life who understand the deep heartache of having lost someone who was such an important part of her life and who she loved so deeply. Whenever we talk, I always ask her to share her stories and memories with me, and she knows it's ok to cry with me and to show her heart.

Thank you so much for your kind words about my Grammas--we talk on the phone every day, a few times a day, and I visit them a few times a month; they live about an hour away. Next week I'll be visiting my Gramma Fowler to plant flowers--it's a yearly tradition, and she makes me a big, country-cookin' lunch, and it's always one of my favorite days of the year.

Be well, Dabs--and feel free to share stories of your Mother with me any time.
 
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