Why Don't I Just Kill Myself and Go To Heaven?
The usual way of thinking about getting into Heaven is to wait until the self dies. And often Heaven is something to be won through righteous living in the world. In this view there is a direct correlation between the self’s life in the world and Truth (Heaven). Even if one does not have to earn Heaven it is implied that It can only be experienced when the body falls away. The body is one’s obstacle to being aware of Truth and experiencing Heaven.
A Course in Miracles, however, teaches that Heaven is here within you now and all you have to do is choose to be aware of It. There is no intersection of the self’s life in the world and Truth. You can experience both, but never at the same time, because they are diametrically opposed. Each cancels out the other. So the body is not an obstacle to Truth. But your belief in the body as your reality is. Heaven, then, is what is left when you let go of the belief in the body as your reality. This is an action of the mind and it has nothing to do with the body.
Despite this I still get this question from students of A Course in Miracles: “Since I don’t have to earn Heaven through this life in the world why don’t I just kill myself right now to go to Heaven?” The person asking this always reassures me that this is an intellectual inquiry and that they are not feeling suicidal. I explain how killing the body does not lead to Heaven because doing so also kills of that which seeks Heaven. That which is in pain in its identification with a self (body/personality) is also that which seeks relief (Heaven) from that identification. If you have never tasted ice cream but want to do so do you taste ice cream or kill yourself? Which would bring you the satisfaction you seek? Killing yourself would eliminate your desire for ice cream but it would not satisfy your desire to taste ice cream. It would also eliminate the “you” that you think wants to try ice cream.
Imagine a line stretching infinitely into the distance. It has no beginning and no ending. This line represents Truth, or Heaven, in your mind. Imagine that along part of the Infinite line a faint, wispy, finite line runs parallel to it. This finite line is the illusion of time. The finite line’s beginning represents the beginning of time and its ending represents the end of time. At no point do these lines intersect.
The space between the Infinite and the finite is the split-mind (Son of God in A Course in Miracles). The Infinite is the Reality within it; the finite is what it imagines. It, too, begins and ends with the wispy finite.
What you think of as your individual split-mind is a tiny part of the space between the Infinite and the imagined finite. It lasts for only a tiny part of the wispy finite. Again, at no point do the Infinite and the finite intersect. The end, or “death”, of a part of the finite or of the finite as a whole, does not make a bridge between the finite and the Infinite. The end, or death, of any part of the finite is part of the finite. It does not affect the Infinite at all.
Death is not a bridge between Truth and illusion. It is part of the illusion. When an illusion ends no part of it “goes on” or “crosses” over to Truth. No part of illusion becomes Truth. Truth continues on, as it did for the duration of the illusion, completely untouched by the passing of the illusion.
The split-mind only has to be willing to put aside its belief in the story of time (finite) to be aware of Heaven. Death ends belief but it does not correct it. Death defeats the object of a changed perception because perception ends with death. Suicide would end, but not satisfy, one’s desire to perceive Heaven because it ends the desirer, too. A split-mind is no longer split when one part of it has fallen away.
Perception (awareness, consciousness), desire, lack – these are all temporary (time-bound) experiences. They can be satisfied in time through an awareness (perception, consciousness) of Truth. But they, and the awareness of Truth, end in time. Only Truth Itself has nothing to do with time.
Do you have burning questions or concepts on which you are stuck? Why not book a half-hour with me to get past them? Liz@acimmentor.com. Answering questions and removing obstacles is what I do with my clients. Learn more at www.acimmentor.com.