Is There “Free Willy” In Heaven?

Free Willy had no free will. He was kept in a tank and had to do tricks.

Oh, my mistake. That’s supposed to say “Free Will”.

theBEattitude raises some interesting questions in a recent blog post. I’m just going to swipe the whole article, because I can’t do it justice with a short excerpt. There are a lot of other good articles over at theBEattitude. You should go over there and check ’em out.

If you stop wanting to sin in heaven:

  1. If sin is a choice in heaven, you can still be immoral and harm other people. Thus making heaven an imperfect place.
  2. The only deterrent to evil behavior is fear of consequences and guilt. If heaven has no fear, guilt or consequences, what is stopping people from evil behavior?

If God makes it impossible to sin in heaven:

  1. Why not bypass earth and create all people in heaven? Does God get joy from watching people suffer? Why put his “beloved” humans on an imperfect planet? Is our existence on earth some sort of twisted game?
  2. If your free will taken away from you in heaven, how is that a reward? Do you become a slave with every day controlled like a mindless robot? If your free will is taken away, that makes you a prisoner.
  3. Lastly, how did Satan fall away from God if he couldn’t sin in heaven?

If you can reject god and/or sin in heaven:

  1. If you can sin in heaven and be sent to hell, how is it different than earth?
  2. How could evil things happen in a so-called perfect place?
  3. People would spend eternity avoiding sin and fearing God’s wrath. That doesn’t sound like a joyful eternity.

The idea of a perfect Christian heaven is flawed no matter how you look at it. Either you are a mindless drone, or God is some sort of ruling dictator in heaven still threatening people with hell. Under either description, heaven isn’t a perfect place.

Or there is always the possibility that heaven is an imaginary place invented by ancient Jewish men.

8 Responses to “Is There “Free Willy” In Heaven?”

  1. defective robot Says:

    So heaven is like socialism? Hmmm, no wonder Obama shills for god. Why are the fundies so eager to get there?

  2. Parrotlover77 Says:

    Because it’s socialism with a dictator. They aren’t against socialism. They are just against a democratically elected socialist government full of those with a secular government attitude. God is a religious dictatorship, so they are happy under any “economic” system of heaven.

  3. Steve Wiggins Says:

    Actually, the concept of heaven was invented by the Zoroastrians from whom the Jewish guys borrowed it. Seems ironic that the idea of heaven originated in what is now Iran.

  4. Rose Says:

    Steve, that’s an interesting lesson, I had no idea. I knew that a lot of the christian traditions were taken from pagan culture but I should really brush up on my history 🙂

    You know I tried having this free will in heaven debate with a friend and I’ll got in response was “Nobody will want to sin in heaven.” Who knew that all christians needed was to live in their afterlife to get rid of that pesky desire to sin? I went with the “there is no good without bad” route and didn’t have anymore luck there either.

    From my experience, these kinds of arguments just make the standard fundie shake their head in pity over the over-analytical and faithless person willing to deny their “maker.”

  5. Steve Wiggins Says:

    I teach a course on Ancient Near Eastern religions at Rutgers, so I have lots of fun tidbits about the origins of “Christian” concepts. The early Christians were surprisingly uncreative — many of their concepts were borrowed. The problem is that modern people, who should know better, take all this symbolic talk literally. It creates no end of trouble for the rest of us!

  6. Jeff Eyges Says:

    Steve, I thought the Egyptians had a form of it prior – although that may have been a later development. I realize that Egyptian civilization went on for a l-o-n-g time.

    As you may know, Karen Armstrong is on a book tour. I heard her speak the other night, and she insisted that prior to the modern era (since the 17th century or so), adherents of the Western religions didn’t understand their scriptures literally, and would be surprised to learn that millions today do. I’ve heard her say this before, and I think she’s seeing what she wants to see. Do you have an opinion?

  7. Brian Says:

    I recently managed to completely flabbergast a Christian who thought he was clever enough to make me change my evil ways. After the usual back-and-forth about God’s existence, I granted him the hypothetical assumption that everything he believed in was true. Even if that were the case, I told him, heaven is the last place I’d want to spend eternity. A never-ending existence spent on bended knee praising a deity whose egotism and paranoid insecurity sent others to eternal damnation? Thanks, but no thanks. I’d rather laugh with the sinners than cry with the saints, the sinners are much more fun…

  8. Parrotlover77 Says:

    If heaven is truly full of all those that fundies claim will be there, I agree. Why would I want to hang out with them? Granted, I could find my own heaven clique of lesser fundies, but still. Would it really be that much better?

    If I really have an eternal soulful existence ahead of me as the fundies claim, then both ultimate outcomes sound like torture. So, why not have a little fun while I’m still alive?