saying-11; ; an empty heaven.

 

Thomasgospel-Jesus

if you want to experience what he meant

saying- 11; an empty heaven.

 

 

 

 

Jesus says,

This heaven will pass away,

and the one above it will pass away.

 

 

Comments:

 

Is this an apocalyptic prophesy, or does it have a different meaning?

 

Back then heaven was taken to be composed of several layers. Some considered seven

different levels, but the Old Testament only three: one directly above

our heads where the birds of heaven fly; the second one that reached unto the celestial bodies,

whereas God resided in the third heaven. The heaven between men and God was thought to be

inhabited by demons and spirits, who, because of their proximity to men, could easily come

down to attack or even take possession of someone.

 

I am not sure whether the first two levels are meant in this saying, in which case the human

and demonic worlds were predicted to "pass away"; when and how

remaining unclear, but an apocalyptic twist would be evident, as the third heaven

would remain.

 

Jesus might , however, not have spoken about the heavens in a literary sense, but

figuratively, in which case he probably meant to say that heaven as a concept in our mind

(this one and that one; they are not numbered!) would pass away once his teachings

are really understood. Considering his other sayings, to me this seems the

most plausible interpretation as in that case it aimed at fully subverting

conventional thought about heaven, doing away with dualistic thinking about the

nature of reality. Reality, experienced as many great masters referred to, cannot be

conceptualized (Plotinus, the Enneads, 1991). Furthermore, the idea of non-duality

hardly escapes conceptual thinking itself (Loy, 1988).

 

Such rather agnostic consideration about the concept of heaven would

sound familiar to the ears of a Buddhist.