EXISTENTIAL topic: Why is Paradise or Heaven the solution to anything?

by TerryWalstrom 9 Replies latest social current

  • TerryWalstrom

    Gather around the campfire, boys and girls.

    I have a little journey for us all to take together.

    Long, long ago in this Universe not so far away . . .

    Once in timeless nothingness, there existed a timeless Being we now call GOD.
    Whatever "perfection" is or was--God was. God was perfect.

    But wait--that's not all!

    And here is where the story begins!


    If perfect and timeless God had been content being perfect and timeless, existing in perfection and timelessness---WHY did the next thing happen?

    God changed!


    Floating. . . Alone. . . in Darkness. . . just being perfect. . . was something God wouldn't endure any longer! Perfection and Existence were not ideal.

    God decided to become a CREATOR.

    RECAP: Not a creator became CREATOR. Alone became not alone.
    That is a change.
    An existential change signals a NEED.
    Contentment is not troubled by need.

    Buddhists might describe the ultimate state of existence as NIRVANA.
    Nirvana means that the candle has been blown out.

    It describes the darkness and peace God was in BEFORE he decided to change.

    Nirvana is the liberation from the need for change = contentment.
    So, can we say our lonely, floating, eternal God was NOT content in Nirvana? Yes.

    If Nirvana (or Heaven itself) was not enough for God---why is it the solution for man?

    Humans exist in Nature.

    Humans begin as single cells inside a male and female.

    Those two cells combine and transform over and over and over.

    We are the product of millions, billions of cell divisions. We are cyclical.

    A butterfly is not all at once a butterfly.

    A butterfly is first an egg, then a caterpillar, and finally a bag of goo which becomes

    a butterfly.
    If the butterfly is the BEST of those states of being---why is there a need for the egg and cocoon?
    Nature is whispering in our ear, "Start, Change, Stop"


    Well now, my fellow campfire companions, are you still with me?
    The question is not too difficult, is it?

    Why is man's idea of Paradise or Heaven a solution to anything?

    If God could not / would not be content--why would we expect to become content?

    Aren't we fooling ourselves?

  • Crazyguy

    People since the time of ancient Egypt and Sumerian didn't want to except death of a person as a final end so they came up with the idea of a after life. Egyptians came up with the idea of heaven and a paradise called the field of reeds. The Greeks copied this idea and called it Elysium. So did the Menoens. The Jews were not all in to it but when Christianity took hold they the followers of Christianity jumped all over the idea .

  • Pete Zahut
    Pete Zahut

    Why is man's idea of Paradise or Heaven a solution to anything?
    If God could not / would not be content--why would we expect to become content?

    I think the JW answer would be that one can only be content when they are free of sin and the worry of death and the world around them is free of suffering and chaos. They'd say that one can be content yet still be creative and ambitious at the same time.

    My question always was in regard to "purpose". They always emphasized the importance of ones life having a "purpose" and that living forever was the only real way that could happen. It seems to me life has the same "purpose" whether it lasts 80 years or goes on and on forever.

    The BIG questions that the Bible doesn't address is what was God's purpose in creating life? If he created humans to live forever, why did he do so and what was the purpose in creating animals that lived a limited time so that they'd suffer that effects of growing old and dying in full view of perfect humans who'd undoubtedly be distressed about seeing this ?

    I think humans have interpreted our hard wired instinct to survive and not wanting to die, with wanting to live forever.

    Instinctually we don't want to die but living forever might be the worst thing ever.

  • TheWonderofYou

    Dear Terry, what a fortuity. I am exactly now reading about the contentment in a book written by Dalai Lama himself. For the moment I am so surprised abouth this happening that I am quite breathless. So I hope to be ably to contribute to your campfire in this evening under the stars some thoughts about a happy God in "heaven".

  • TerryWalstrom


    Amazing, I just watched this video when I woke up this morning.

    I was knocked backwards on my heels. I had no idea these things happened to the Dali Lama or the things he caused to happen.

  • TheWonderofYou

    NIRVANA – What is it?

    „blown out like a candle“ or „quenched“

    Are you ready for putting another log on our campfire and listen to a story? At the campfire our thoughts ramble.

    I did a little homework to understand the idea of „Nirvana“ and the connected „Samsara“ how I could work for my own Buddhahood to help others if I would find time. This is necessary before talking about the fictive situation, that we put our monotheistic GOD into Nirvana and think about how „he“ feels there.

    If Nirvana meant really squinching of the candle literally, than our campfire would not exist here, because I feel content with our situation here. And what about feelings, personal identity and our personal liberated ultimate contentment, would it be squinched?

    The „magi“ speak of two kinds of Nirvana, one that is even already achievable in this world, as human being and the other after the death, the buddahood in this life is Nirvana.

    In Buddhism a person can be in this live in the state of Buddhahood, what would be the same as being already in Nirvana, but this kind of Nirvana is only achievable after much CHANGE in someones thoughts and deeds, liberation, awakeing. Yes furthermore, this kind of change of mind is positive, a positiv change that leads to enlightenment, the state of altruistic BUDDAHOOD and the release of our inner buddha-nature, say the magi.

    As for the Nirvana-state in this life, the CONTENTMENT does not mean – as we saw - liberation of feelings, emotions but in contrary the fullness of empathy towards other beings.

    What than is meant with the „extinguished flame“ in Nirvana, if the personal true nature/individuality the EGO is not „quenched“? It turns around the „ CHANGING triple FIRE“ of „illusion, greed and hatred“ - the source of suffering - from which in Nirvana you are liberated, they are blown out.

    Truth of Cessation of Suffering.
    „It is clear that nirvana-in-this-life is a pyschological and ethical reality, a transformed state of personality characterised by peace, deep spiritual joy, compassion, and a regined and subtle awareness. Negative emotional states and emotions such as doubt, worry, anxiety and fear are absent from the enlightened mind.“ Truth of Cessation of Suffering.

    To come further I go first into explaining how the way to Nirvana looks like and how it can the state of Nirvana/Buddahood is achieved.

    I read “How to expand love, widening the cycle of loving relationship“, 2005 by Dalai Lama. In this book he describes the way of altruistic enlightenment as mediation, awareness, widening out out empathy on all beings, commandable meriterious altruistic deeds.

    Fundament: Equality of friend and enemy, meditation

    1. First step: Positive attitute towards other beings
    2. Second step: Appreciation of benignity and amicability
    3. Third step: Responding to benignity
    4. Fourth step: Love, solidarity, awareness of suffering, care (unconditional Love)
    5. Fiftch step: Development of Pity and mercy,
      (Desire to see others released of suffering)
    6. Sixth step: Pledge oneself to altruism and charity, (unconditional devotion)
    7. Seventh step: Unselfish altruistic entlightment
      (transformation from egoisms to healthy welfare and love towards others)


    So everthing in buddhism turns around „AWAKENING“ of the spirit. This is a process accompanied by CHANGE, wisdom, learning, meditating, empathy, doing.
    “Ultimate enlightenement therefore is not egoism of the individual, redemption for yourself without thinking of others, but is only achievable through being merciful and pityful to other beings.

    Dalai Lama writes: So you will not rest in peace but consecrate yourself to the wellbeing of others....The endpoint of spiritual practice is the large empathy.“

    The wellknown titels for this way of AWAKEING are:
    Buddahood [Awakended one = being benefit all beings]
    Buddanature [awakened mind]
    Bodhisattva [someone who wants to awake]
    NIRVANA [state after awakening],

    The highest degree is in buddhism the enlightenment [AWAKENING] which is the permant presence of empathy.

    Dalai Lama writes: So you will not rest in peace but consecrate yourself to the wellbeing of others....The endpoint of spiritual practice is the large empathy.“



    Buddhists might describe the ultimate state of existence as NIRVANA.
    Nirvana means that the candle has been blown out.
    It describes the darkness and peace God was in BEFORE he decided to change.__

    So my understanding of the meaning of "blowing out the candle" is now not any longer a state of DARKNESS, BOREDOM, LONELINES in heaven but of AWAKENING,TRUE COMMUNION, FRIENDSHIP like at our fine campfire here, with flames of empathy, flames from our hearts, free of false illusions. This comes close to nirvana-paradise.

    How does this fit to a GOD FLOATING over the sea?

    More shall come if my spiritual condition allows.


    SAMSARA - NIRVANA - cling to each other

    In this enlightened BUDDHAHOOD state that anyone can theorically achieve by own efforts and preexisting abilities like buddha nature the NIRVANA, the inner freedom means simple the exemption from the conditional world called SAMSARA, which is the conditional world existing only in our imagination that causes pain due to our compulsive spiritual attachment or adherence to false premises, dualistic ideas, fears and hopes, changing conditions and false premises of the own EGO, SAMSARA is described as endless world-cycle of painful and conditional experienes. Only then we understand why NIRVANA is unclear translated as „great quenching“, it turns around „exemption from evil conditional thoughts and not from feelings, experiences, personality or happiness in general.

    In contrary in turns around bringing out the best of mankind to its full enlightenment, values, love, mercy and empathy and realisation about an inconditional permanent true condition of the clear spirit as a boundless candor.



    Comparsion 1- House built on sand

    I would compare the SAMSARA notion for the beginning - in a limping comparison of course - with the biblical „house that is built on sand, and not built on permanent positive values or treasures with God.“ Samsara would in my comparison be then a whole WORLD built on sand, built on false premises and veiled spirit. True values and happiness would be found only then in the House of Nirvana, the world-House of values and clear spirit of boundless spirit. If you like kingdom-spirit (NIRVANA) against wordly spirit (SAMSARA)

    Note: It turns around spiritual conditions in our mind.

  • Vidiot

    Terry - "Why is Paradise or Heaven the solution to anything?"

    Because for some people, the flaws of the world we live in seem so insurmountable, the only way they can be truly dealt with is intervention by a higher power.

  • Xanthippe

    Eh 'cause dying is frightening? Surviving sounds better?

  • TerryWalstrom

    I have to confess I've never believed in heaven beyond mere acknowledgment that it "exists" as a conceptual term.
    The idea of Paradise seems ok--but--unless I have identity as a separate thinking entity with my own thoughts and tastes, I may end up having to "conform." Gee, I never liked that.

  • myelaine

    Elohim is a triunity of being. Father, Son and the feminine Spirit. The notion of creating man in their image (male and female) wasn't borne out of not being content, but the desire to create man to share in love.

    entering into eternity to become part of a loving family is a hope. Many don't have that pleasure on earth and many live with constant adversity as their "human condition". I wouldn't call heaven or paradise a solution like you did. (I guess that's the way you've framed the idea because you've got a crappy life?)...but for those humble in spirit or downtrodden it certainly is a blessed reward or consolation after their time on earth. Matthew 5:1-10.


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