The Hindu believes that he will one day unite with Brahman. A Buddhist strives for self-liberation. A Muslim is waiting for a fair judgment of Allah. A Jew keeps the commandments of the Law, and a Christian believes that Jesus saved him.
If representatives of different religions were to work together to find out how to get to heaven, they would have a huge problem. Some belief in one God, some belief in many gods, and still, others believe that there is no absolute or it is unknown whether there is. Man’s approach to the concept of deity has an impact on how he imagines life after death. Here is a summary of the six most important worldviews that show how people around the world strive for eternal happiness.
It is a collection of many different beliefs related to the Indian region. To understand this religion, one has to start with the Indo-European invaders of the Aryans who inhabited the Indus and Ganges valleys as early as 2000 BC. They brought with them the eternal law – the Veda. Over the centuries, this religion changed to meet the pre-Vedic cultures. The most important gods are Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. Hindus believe that one of the gods, from time to time, comes down to earth in bodily form as an avatar. Such incarnations were, for example, Krishna and Buddha. Man in Hinduism is only an emanation of divinity. It is unreal because Brahma is real.
The Way to Heaven
Believers believe that an immortal soul is made in God’s image, but is not as perfect as it is. Therefore, she must go through successive incarnations (reincarnations) to finally unite with Brahman through humility and obedience. The form the soul takes depends on karma, that is, the law of cause and effect. In the present life, one earns either happiness or the suffering that awaits him in the next incarnation. This sequence continues until nirvana is achieved. An important term for a Hindu is yoga, which recognizes the nature of reality. Proper physical training, meditation, and ethical behaviour help overcome karma.
Hinduism has many different fractions, practices and deities, which makes it difficult to clearly define it. It is not easy to determine what kind of religion this is, because some believe that it is a polytheistic system, others that it is theistic, monistic, pantheistic, atheistic or nihilistic. It does not have a founder, so it is difficult to find a point of reference. It is a changeable, elusive system that adapts to new conditions. The holy Vedas are more than books of theology because they contain many myths and mix history with legends. The social position of women is also causing controversy.
This religion is not about faith because Buddhists believe that God does not exist. There is also no real person or soul. The Buddha gave up all metaphysical explanations for the self-existence problem. There is also no concept of sin. What is important, however, is the issue of suffering. The Four Noble Truths say that suffering is caused by desire (lust) and that one must follow the Noble Eightfold Path for it to cease. Buddhists believe in reincarnation, or incarnation into a new physical being after death. Man has nothing permanent about himself, except the consciousness that can pass to the next life. The highest perfection in Buddhism is nirvana, which is the cessation of all desire. The awakened being, upon attaining it, eventually breaks free from the cycle of birth and death. To do this while alive, one has to free the mind from ignorance through special teachings and practices. An important concept is karma or the law of cause and effect. What man does has consequences: bad deeds will return indirectly as suffering and good as happiness.
The way to Heaven of
Salvation can only be reached through self-liberation. It consists in completely freeing oneself from the world and abolishing oneself. Only then can you find your end, the endless cycle of incarnations full of suffering.
This religion is difficult for Europeans to understand, but in the age of tolerance, more and more people are fascinated by it. Controversy is the approach to women as somewhat impure and standing lower than men. The original Buddhist rules have a very strong tradition and are often anachronistic. It is also not a uniform religion, it has many traditions and books. To become a Buddhist in the traditional sense, one has to enter a monastery where absolute obedience to the teacher is required.
The basis of the second religion, in terms of numbers, is faith in Allah, who is the one and perfect God. It is the source of all knowledge and justice. Man is his creature and servant, but is endowed with free will. The world is real and creation is good. One can become a follower of Islam by speaking with sincere intent the formula: There is no God but Allah, and Muhammad is His prophet, and by accepting the obligations arising from the Koran, tradition and law. In Sunni Islam, a Muslim has five duties, known as the five pillars of Islam: confession of faith, prayer, almsgiving, fasting, and a pilgrimage to Mecca.
The Way to Heaven
To get to paradise, a Muslim must rely on God’s righteous judgment to reward or punish him based on his deeds. Everyone will be judged, but the unbelievers, that is, non-Muslims, have no chance of salvation.
Many people have doubts about Islam because almost every terrorist is a Muslim. Most of Allah’s followers are peaceful, but the attitude of Islam to followers of other religions is controversial, often even aggressive. The Koran can be used to justify murder or a religious war. Another difficult issue is the social position of women.
Although there are many Jews in the world, only 0.25% of the population adheres to this oldest monotheistic religion. The foundation of Judaism is the belief in one God, Jehovah (personal, indivisible and eternal), who not only created the world but also constantly oversees it. He made an everlasting covenant with the people of Israel, promising protection and assistance in return for his obedience to his commandments. Jewish law regulates the lives of the faithful in great detail. Its basis is the Mosaic Pentateuch (Torah), interpreted in another important book, the Talmud. The Torah teaches that a Messiah will come out of the Jewish people who will establish God’s kingdom on earth and gather all Jews in one place – Israel. It will be a preparation for the final kingdom of heaven, in which there will be a resurrection and the Last Judgment.
Jews call themselves the Chosen People, not because they want to be better than others. They believe that God has chosen them to be His intercessors among other people.
The Road to Heaven
According to the Judaists, the Messiah has not yet come, so the basis of salvation is the fulfilment of God’s commandments contained in the Torah.
The main place of Jewish worship was the Temple, where priests offered animal sacrifices to appease God for their sins or to thank Him. Since AD 70, when it was demolished, the Jews have not been able to worship, because the Temple cannot be rebuilt elsewhere (now there is a mosque in this area). There are many sects of Judaism, most of which rely on faithful adherence to the Talmud. Often these teachings do not fit in with the present.
It is the largest religion in the world that has a great influence on humanity. It was founded by Jesus of Nazareth, who is considered a God-man. He was a law-abiding Jew and had no intention of establishing a new religion. Christians believe that he is the Messiah who came into the world to redeem humanity from sin. He did this by dying on the cross where, as a sinless person, He took the sins of all people upon Himself. He then rose again, proving that it was possible to overcome sin and death. Someday he will come again to make a just Last Judgment. Followers of this religion recognize not only the Jewish Old Testament but also the New. Moreover, they believe in the Holy Trinity, that is, in one God who is in three persons: God the Father, the Son of God and the Holy Spirit.
The way to heaven A
Christian cannot deserve eternal life by his actions. He can only get to heaven by putting faith in Jesus as his Lord and Savior. Works are important, but they cannot be the basis for entering Paradise. It is the only religion that is not about obeying laws, but rather about having a close relationship with a personal God.
There have been some inglorious events in history, such as the Crusades and the abuses of power by the clergy. There were tensions and even religious wars between the three main groups (Catholicism, Orthodoxy, and Protestantism). Many followers today are only nominal Christians, that is, they consider themselves Christians, but you don’t see it in their lives. The concept of the Trinity is also difficult to explain.
While the agnostic is not sure if God exists, the atheist argues that God or gods certainly do not exist. He believes that belief in supernatural powers is not only unnecessary but also harmful and contrary to science or reason. We distinguish between hidden atheism, which means lack of faith without a conscious rejection of it, and declared atheism, which consists of conscious unbelief.
The Road to Heaven
Since an atheist does not believe in the existence of the absolute, he cannot believe in an afterlife. For the followers of this worldview, life ends with death, the body decomposes into prime factors, and the soul does not exist.
Atheists insist that faith is illogical. However, it can be said that not believing in God is also faith. The belief that there is no deity. Just as it is impossible to prove the existence of God empirically, it is also impossible to prove that he does not exist. Moreover, atheism cannot satisfactorily answer the question of where did matter, world and life come from.
Karma, reincarnation, Koran, Messiah, grace or rejection of God’s existence? Which concept is correct? Or maybe all worldviews describe the same God, but in a different way?