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The Difference between Heaven and Hell

I became aware of this fable when I was teenager. It was read to us in school assembly one morning. Although it has the hall marks of a story that, with a few superficial differences in detail, will appear in range of different spiritual traditions, in fact, I have never yet come across it.

The story is this: 

A man was granted a wish to better understand what is Heaven and what is Hell. He was given a guide and taken to viewing point where he could observe what happened to those who had passed over.

First they were made to stand in line before two doorways and were eventually directed by those overseeing the operation to either one or the other. Before they entered their designated door way, each was given a spoon with a long handle. Then they disappeared inside.

The man observing this was still no clearer about the matter which had brought him here. So the guide signalled that he should go across the threshold of the door way marked Hell, and as soon as he did he heard the sound of shouting, sobbing and wailing. Then he found himself in a large hall amid scenes of great distress as malnourished people struggled to get food from an enormous pot into their ravenous mouths. But the length of the handle of the spoons that they had been given was such that, although they could reach the pot, they dropped the food before they got it to their mouths. The man was appalled by the suffering he was observing.

Asking whether he had seen enough the guide lead him towards the other door marked Heaven, and as they advanced, the man heard the soft buzz of pleasant conversation between replete people In Heaven the man saw that with similar long handled spoons and from a similar large pot, each person was feeding his neighbour .

He understood then what is Heaven and what is Hell.

On a daily basis I observe people who have awareness of 2012 and who are trying to find a way forward, either failing to recognise or pushing away the things that would serve them because they cannot get them on their own terms.

None of us will get things on our own terms. You must understand this if you want to live on passed 2012 because the planet will not accommodate any longer the terms of selfish, acquisitive people. We have to start listening to what is required of us. 

If you are in hell, frightened by the prospect of 2012 and not able to find the groups or organisations that you think will help you, or bored by the dismal business of thinking about personal survival, try turning round the telescope and start thinking about what you can contribute rather than what you need. Then the view may change. 

Before ever we put to ourselves the question what is going to be right for me, we all need to be asking what is right about me and my lifestyle. Our problem is not 2012; our problem is and always has been self centredness.

One of our members found this organisation on the Internet and although we have not yet managed to establish contact with those involved we are supplying a link because we like the sound of it. 

August 2008

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