Scary Stuff

Since it’s fall and Halloween is coming, I’ve been talking a lot of death with God lately. She actually finds it kind of fascinating because it’s something that she can’t actually do. Oh, she can enter into something that’s dying, or various other tricks (or treats) but it’s just pretending when it comes down to it. It’s like us watching some character die in a movie, it might give us insight, but it’s not the same as really dying.

What she finds particularly interesting is how we put so much effort into celebrating something that we only ever get to experience in the future, something that none of us ever get the chance to hear a first person account of. So without a chance to get any first hand information, we’ve concocted various Day of the Dead celebrations, such as Halloween. Even funerals can be looked at as just another way of us preparing for that last great adventure, of trying to experience it in our heads before it happens.

The Christian take is that we’ll shuffle of our mortal coil and then catch the express train to either heaven or hell, depending on how good we were while living. Before getting the chance to have daily conversations with God, I was a pretty staunch atheist, but I still lived my life being as good as I could reasonably manage. I didn’t do it to get into heaven, but rather because of a firm belief that if we all tried to be good to each other the world would be a much more pleasant place.

So this leads me to wonder, what if I got into heaven just by being good and without “accepting Jesus Christ as my personal saviour?” What if I got up there and discovered that the place was mostly full of proselytizing zealots? That’s a notion I find a lot scarier than any horror movie I’ve seen. Maybe I should dress up as a preacher this Halloween and see how many little kids I can scare then? Then again, thanks to the Catholic church, that might be a whole different kind of scary.

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