Friday, April 27, 2007

People Are Screwing With Your Head About Heaven

Don't wait for the Last Judgement. It takes place every day.
- Albert Camus, writer and philosopher (1913-1960)

What if that's true? What if what we have been told conditions are like in an afterlife is really nothing more than our daily lives?

Some people live lives that they would not know how to improve if they knew what they could wish for. Does that seem possible to you?

Some people live under such conditions that they would not shed a tear if their mortal coil were snatched away from them today because they can't imagine anything worse.

People living for the accumulation of money and wealth could not imagine themselves in a heavenly place on earth because they can never be satisfied, never have enough. That applies as well to those who live for sex, for gambling, for drugs or any other addiction, for hate or for the desire to destroy or to hurt. For them, this life is nothing but a continual wanting, a need for something they can never have. Isn't that a form of hell? Getting more, but never getting enough. Never finding happiness because they're on the hunt for something not related to happiness.

For some people, the amount of money they may have or lack or need means very little. To the accumulators, these others live in poverty, a private form of hell. To themselves, they live in heaven because they do what makes them feel good and they never regret the passing of a day.

They don't imagine living in a place where the streets are paved with gold as being anything interesting, just a waste of resources on materialistic thinking.

The latter group are builders, supporters, helpers to their fellow members of the species of humanity. They won't lower themselves to the level of someone else when they would rather raise the other to their own level if that is desired. The help those who want to be helped.

They see their mission on earth as something very different from that of the accumulators. The accumulators gather as much as possible around them for as long as they can. They believe the old saying that he who has the most when he dies wins. But the accumulators have nothing to take with them when they die and most have little to leave behind except spoiled children who will enjoy their newly acquired wealth.

The builders and helpers don't consider themselves poor. On the contrary, they consider themselves rich in what makes their lives worthwhile. For them life is not about what you can buy with the money you have, or about power or influence. It's about what you do with the time you have.

It takes no wisdom to spend money. Everyone does it. It requires wisdom to spend time wisely.

The accumulators spend their time getting more money they can't take with them when they die and they can't really enjoy because they spend their time trying to get more. The builders and helpers invest their time in creating a life for themselves by helping others to grow toward their potential.

The accumulators look forward to getting their reward in heaven, even if they haven't earned a reward. The builders and helpers have their reward here, today.

Camus told us to not wait for the Last Judgment, that it takes place every day. Perhaps he should have added that each day we have the opportunity to build ourselves toward that Last Judgment at the end of the day.

Every time the sun comes up, we begin a new lifetime. Tomorrow is always blurry and yesterday fuzzy. Only today is clear and vivid. No one can prove that yesterday ever existed or that tomorrow is anything but fantasy. Today is in our faces.

Tonight when you go to bed, you will have done more to help yourself or more to help others. That's not to say that you shouldn't build yourself, grow yourself into what you want to be in the future. Everyone can help others to grow and to build, even if they are in the process of growing themselves.

The difference is the objective of what we want from life. If what we want from life is only what we can use in life, then we live a base existence. If we live to have others admire us for what we have accumulated, we live a base existence that will be squelched out of being one day, never to be remembered.

There is nothing special about the stuff of this planet from which we derive money and wealth of other kinds. It's all over the universe, in about 100 billion galaxies. Only this earth has humanity. That makes earth special. Only those who advance the cause of humanity will have meant anything while they were here.

You must figure out what you believe is important. You must stand up for what you believe. You must work for what you believe. But, at the end of the day when no mortal remains of you is left, what will you have contributed that benefits those who stay behind?

Tomorrow you will have another chance at another lifetime. You will choose between taking unto yourself or giving of yourself. By the end of the day your lifetime will have been wasted or will have contributed to the betterment of humanity.

Heaven won't wait for you. You have to do some building yourself. Heaven, whatever it is, is not an entitlement but a reward. It isn't bequeathed to you, you must work for it.

You can't buy it with money. You can only buy it with yourself.

Bill Allin
Turning It Around: Causes and Cures for Today's Epidemic Social Problems, striving to have life make sense because much of it doesn't.
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