Heaven is not real.
Do I know that? No. Well… not in the way one probably means when they say they “know” something.
Let’s just say I know there’s no heaven the same way that I know there are no fairies, unicorns or leprechauns; the same way I know there’s no government conspiracy to plant microchips in our tooth fillings to control our thoughts; the same way I know that when I buy a Hershey bar on my lunch break, it’s going to be made of chocolate and not feces.
That’s why a magazine article like this really makes me wonder how it is Christians go about obtaining their “knowledge” about supernatural things.
In case that wasn’t properly absorbed at first taste, Charisma magazine is actually citing, as “evidence,” the testimony of a man who says he visited heaven thirty-something years ago for a few hours and was then sent back to Earth so he could write a book about the experience and sell it for $12.99.
I had no idea the tickets to heaven were available round-trip.
And on top of that, he assures us that we have an eternity of work waiting for us after we die. So keep that in mind, if your doctor tells you that you have terminal cancer; you’re not experiencing a painful disease that’s selected you completely at random and for no discernible reason… God just needs more cheap labor to add another wing to his mansion.
Because all the good contractors, of course, are in hell.
All kidding aside, why the fuck should we believe anything else these people have to say about anything? Once you start basing the things you claim to “know” on a hallucinatory near-death experience and individual interpretations of an archaic book of grown-up fairy tales, where do you think your credibility ranks? I’d say somewhere between The National Inquirer and Scientology Monthly.
Christians… do yourself a favor and stop claiming to know things with certainty that no one in their right could possibly know about. I’ve heard way too many Christians claim that they just know there’s a god, because they’ve felt his presence (as if there’s no such thing as a psychological trance state or an out-of-body experience), or seen his work in their life (as if there’s no such thing as false association or confirmation bias), and that no one would ever convince them otherwise (as if that’s the sort of thing an open-minded, rational, or skeptical person would say).
That is, if you truly care about having intellectually honest dialog with atheists. If not, feel free to make all the wild, fantastic claims you want, and I’ll feel free to make fun of you.
(via Friendly Atheist)