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Heaven and Hell: They Really Exist? ~ BENEATH THE SURFACE with PAUL MURANO

By: Paul Murano – Oct. 2017

Man is the only creature who is aware of his own impending death. We all know we will die, and as we grow more mature we realize the lighting speed at which this life flies by. It may occur naturally with age, or with a man-made disaster like in Las Vegas, or by natural disaster like a hurricane Irma, or a disease that could take you within weeks, or even an accident that could kill you instantly. We Bouncy castle for sale may die before birth by natural miscarriage or by abortion. The bottom line is that our personal death is relatively imminent. After that, what is next? Many believe we will spend an eternity in perfect happiness or misery – heaven or hell. But are these places real? Let’s go beneath the surface on this question of the afterlife.

First, we can make one general observation about death and the human condition: belief in an afterlife is universal. This does not mean everyone who has ever lived has consciously believed in life after death. However, every people and every culture since pre-historical times seems to have held some form of this belief. We see it in cave paintings, pyramids, and ancient literature. This belief was present in pagan polytheistic religions, ancestor-worship cultures, and those that believed in reincarnation. Finally, we have seen it in the great monotheistic religions of the world spanning back four millennia. This fascinating phenomenon of a universal knowledge of life after death can be distinguished into three categories: human intuition, human reason, and divine Revelation. Let’s take a look at each.

With regard to intuition, the pre-Socratic pagan world universally held that life continues beyond the grave. It made no sense to them that the unique personhood of each individual would end with the cessation of bodily function. Hence the ancient world and far eastern cultures to this day believe in some form of continued existence of life after death, revering their ancestors even after they have passed on.

With regard to reason, the great philosophers of the ancient and medieval world came to the conclusion through reason alone that we survive bodily death. The component of our being that is able to grasp immaterial objects such as thoughts and ideas must be immaterial itself, and therefore survive death of the material body. Only something physical can grasp a physical object, like a hand does to a pen; and likewise only something immaterial can grasp an immaterial object, like a mind does to an idea. Physical brains process perception of the material world through the physical senses, like other animals; but our immaterial rational powers enable us to understand essences and ideas, use reason, and freely choose to act over and above our physiological impulses. Physical things cease to exist by decomposing and disintegrating. With immaterial or spiritual things there are no parts to decompose. Hence, the soul continues to exist after the body dies.

Lastly, with divine Revelation there is an element added to intuition and reason: faith. God has revealed it. Christianity holds that God broke into history to communicate the important truth that we are made for union with Him, in this life and forever in the next. This means perfect happiness and fulfillment once all the effects of sin are eradicated. Since the redemption project was consummated in Christ’s sacrifice, all we have to do is say ‘yes’ to His grace and invitation with a willingness to cooperate. A ‘no’ is a rejection of God’s love and a choice to live apart from Him. Our choice is fixed at the moment of our death; its trajectory will be magnified through eternity. It is reasonable to conclude, therefore, that this ultimate choice is to what all our lesser choices in life ought to be directed.

In keeping with this theme, it is important to note that from pre-historical pagan times it has been universally believed that justice plays out after death. One’s afterlife correlates with how one has chosen to live this life. This is also the case in Christianity, the notable difference being bodily resurrection and a belief that God is merciful and offers help to us in overcoming our self-imposed unhappiness. The only block to perfect never-ending joy is one’s prideful refusal to accept this divine mercy.

One final thought. For generations Catholics would meditate regularly on what was aptly called “the four last things” – death, judgment, heaven, and hell. Since secular materialism infected western culture, this priority for many has been placed somewhat on the back-burner. Nonetheless, all the internal and external evidence points to the universal belief that there is life after death. What, then, could possibly be more important than the choice of where to spend eternity? As Augustine once said, it is ultimately a choice between God and self, His (perfect) will and our (disordered) will. Do we humbly accept His forgiveness and resolve to conform our lives to the objective good? Or do we stubbornly deny, ignore, or reject it? This is the difference between heaven and hell. Faith, reason, and intuition all appear to confirm what mankind has held from the beginning: that heaven and hell are real. Our free choice determines which will become real for each of us.

Dr. Paul Murano teaches philosophy at Rivier University and North Shore Community College and hosts Beneath the Surface radio show on 980 WCAP. Paul has a doctorate in marital theology, is certified in bioethics by the NCBC. He is founder of Heartbeat Pregnancy Help in Burlington, and is a singer-songwriter-musician. E-mail Paul at PJDM@aol.com

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A bad girl
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Small tools
The recipe
A bad girl
appetite
attitude
movies
rendezvous
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toys
catering
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outdoors
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science
stretch
training
business
cookbook
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fitness
health
magazine
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Street fashion
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art
fashion
health
Fitness equipment
fitness
nutrition
Nutritious food
routine
training
video
Yoga
Classic cars
evaluation
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transact
Classic cars
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Female models
fitness
health
lifestyle
Small tools
The recipe
travel
hygiene
industry
invest
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medical
Motor car
Real estate
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animation
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Motor car
movies
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Science and technology
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business
cookbook
fashion
fitness
health
magazine
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sports
Street fashion
travel
Big data
business
Fashion show
fitness
lifestyle
Small tools
The recipe
A bad girl
appetite
attitude
movies
rendezvous
sex
toys
catering
health
outdoors
Reduce weight
science
stretch
training
business
cookbook
fashion
fitness
health
magazine
news
sports
Street fashion
travel
art
fashion
health
music
photography
sports
The recipe
tourism
travel
Fitness equipment
fitness
nutrition
Nutritious food
routine
training
video
Yoga
Classic cars
evaluation
technique
transact
Classic cars
technique
transact
business
Fashion magazine
Fashion show
Female models
fitness
health
lifestyle
Small tools
The recipe
travel
animation
car
games
Motor car
movies
music
news
Science and technology
tutorial
catering
health
Lose weight
outdoors
Reduce weight
science
stretch
training
A bad girl
appetite
attitude
movies
rendezvous
sex
toys
business
fashion
fitness
health
lifestyle
news
Small tools
Street fashion
The recipe
travel
hygiene
industry
invest
markets
medical
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Real estate
technique
Fitness equipment
fitness
nutrition
Nutritious food
routine
training
video
Yoga
art
fashion
health
music
photography
sports
The recipe
tourism
travel
hygiene
industry
invest
markets
medical
Motor car
Real estate
technique
animation
car
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Motor car
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news
Science and technology
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business
cookbook
fashion
fitness
health
magazine
news
sports
Street fashion
travel
Big data
business
Fashion show
fitness
health
lifestyle
Small tools
The recipe
A bad girl
appetite
attitude
movies
rendezvous
sex
toys
catering
health
outdoors
Reduce weight
science
stretch
training
business
cookbook
fashion
fitness
health
magazine
news
sports
Street fashion
travel
Fitness equipment
fitness
nutrition
Nutritious food
routine
training
video
Yoga
art
fashion
health
music
photography
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The recipe
tourism
travel
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industry
invest
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Motor car
Real estate
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animation
car
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Motor car
movies
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Science and technology
tutorial
business
cookbook
fashion
fitness
health
magazine
news
sports
Street fashion
travel
Big data
business
Fashion show
fitness
health
lifestyle
Small tools
The recipe
A bad girl
appetite
attitude
movies
rendezvous
sex
toys
catering
health
outdoors
Reduce weight
science
stretch
training
business
cookbook
fashion
fitness
health
magazine
news
sports
Street fashion
travel
art
fashion
health
music
photography
sports
The recipe
tourism
travel
Fitness equipment
fitness
nutrition
Nutritious food
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Yoga
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Classic cars
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Paul Murano

Paul Murano

Dr. Paul Murano teaches philosophy at Rivier University and North Shore Community College and hosts Beneath the Surface radio show on 980 WCAP. Paul has a doctorate in marital theology, is certified in bioethics by the NCBC, and teaches adult ed. at St. Patrick's in Nashua. He is founder of Heartbeat Pregnancy Help in Burlington, and is a singer-songwriter-musician. E-mail Paul at PJDM@aol.com

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One Response to Heaven and Hell: They Really Exist? ~ BENEATH THE SURFACE with PAUL MURANO

  1. Gianna Reply

    October 30, 2017 at 6:30 AM

    Great article….Heaven and Hell are real literal places…I believe without a doubt acceptence of Jesus Christ and what He did for us on Calvary will allow us access to enter Heaven…He is the Door…our rejection will lock that door and Hell would be the result.

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