Thursday 19 September 2019

If Heaven is a Family...

Much follows. But we need to consider family in an ideal way that is not seen (except in glimpses) in the modern world.

We need to imagine an extended Family, or clan - many extended Families linked by marriages and committed friendships.

A Family world that is the basis of society - the political, economic, and also artistic, scientific, and - in general - creative grouping.

In our world, Families are seldom the environment for creativity; but an exception is perhaps when new religions emerge. These are often family affairs in their early years. We can see this in Christianity, when it seems that Jesus's family were the basis. Another example is the growth of Mormonism from Joseph Smith's family.

The Fourth Gospel depicts exactly this phase - and it could be taken as a vision of Heaven. No institutional forms, no hierarchy, no rules or laws - but a wholly organic, spontaneous, love-based human grouping. And creative.

In this mortal world, this phase has - usually sooner rather than latter - been fitted into the formal 'political' structures of settled society. So we get churches.

Probably inevitable, probably (at least in the past) A Good Thing.

But not ideal, not Heaven.

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